Mad Men is crack for vintage lovers. It’s like watching a movie filmed in your hometown. Scene after scene presents glimpses of items you own, owned or remember from your childhood. It’s also rife with food and drinks that make me nostalgic for Sunday nights at my grandparents.
The Pyrex bowls Francie brought over to Betty for Gene’s birthday party, the highball glasses used in the office and the wall hangings in Pete’s apartment are just a few of the details that spark a feeling of familiarity and inspire me to mimic the show.
Last season we missed a few episodes and decided to devote an entire night to catching up. To fully enjoy the mood, I pulled out a pink peignoir set, a la Betty, took our son to my sister’s house, invited our friend Gwen over and created a canapé party that would have pleased Matthew Weiner.
I referenced lots of recipes from 60’s-era cookbooks in my collection. What I found was an abundance of recipes with mayo, green onions and cheese. With those ingredients as my marching orders, I resurrected a recipe my high school boyfriend’s mom once made for me. No doubt she learned it from her mother in the 60’s. Try it this Sunday when you sit down for episode 9.
Cheddar Cheese-Onion Toasts
6 ounces sharp white cheddar cheese, grated
3 tablespoons mayonnaise
2 large or 4 small green onions, sliced thin (white and green parts)
Pinch chili powder
24 slices cocktail rye bread
Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or use a nonstick baking sheet.
Stir together the cheese, mayonnaise, green onions and chili powder in a medium bowl.
Arrange the bread slices on the baking sheet. Top each with about 1 tablespoon of the cheese mixture. Bake until the cheese is melted, about 10 minutes. Transfer to a platter and serve warm.
What to drink: A gimlet!
What to smoke: Lucky Strikes!