This is not a post about how to treat your family to plump, juicy pork chops without frying. It is instead about Nut Cutlets—or “nutlets,” as Steve insists on calling them. We found this recipe in Kitchenology with Principia Friends, a 1933 cookbook written by “St. Louis mothers” as a fundraising tool for Principia College. Perhaps because of Depression-era budgets, the book has an entire section on “Meat Substitutes”—with ideas like Mock Veal Loaf (broken spaghetti, chopped walnuts), Cheese Rarebit (American cheese, crackers, tomato soup) and this gem Steve demanded we make one evening when he discovered a surplus of shelled pecans in the freezer.
We had a bit of fun whirling the ingredients together, forming a fake chop and frying it up. We won’t bother with a real recipe (pecans, egg, breadcrumbs, white sauce, pasta “bone”) because we can’t really say it was an acceptable substitute for our delicious local pork.
We do, however, think it’s an acceptable bit of April Foolery, and charitably hope this will be the most foolish you feel today.
We made this forever ago. And, every week, Steve would say: “What about nutlets?” Glad it finally got its day and I can delete the photo to make room for others!
Cool April Fool. Meat substitutes have always remained an enigma to me so the “nutlet” ain’t going to happen here. Love the illustration.
It won’t happen again here either. Glad you liked the illustration! I hoped you would.
The April Fools jokes will be plentiful today and yours is clever. Love the bone.
Thanks, Karen. Isn’t it a hoot?
I rather like the name – sounds foolish.
Great foolery, for sure!!! Happy April!
And to you as well, Mimi!
I fell for it — hook, line and sinker. Clearly, this pig will not fly.
So fun! I first looked at the picture, wondering what meat had such “étrange” bones, then I read the post…
“Étrange” is the right word for it!
Excellent! They’ll never get me on the other side 😉
Nor we either.
Wow, even back then people were doing weird things to otherwise innocent ingredients in an attempt to recreate meat.
It’s strange, isn’t it? I love vegetarian foods. I just don’t understand when folks try to turn them into “meats.” This book is really bizarre. In addition to the fake veg meat, there’s a recipe for “Mock Chicken with Noodles” that’s made with bacon and veal (yes, and a can of chicken soup). HUH???
Love this post. Happy April Fool’s to you!
Et tu aussi, Daisy!
The pasta “bone” is very cool. I’m a meat eater through and through and I’ve yet to enjoy a meat substitute. Don’t get me wrong, I love mushrooms, tofu and halloumi, I just like them with meat.
Glad you like the “bone.” That really made it for us, too. I agree: Let veg be veg. Don’t try to make them into “meat.” (I don’t get that.)
I’ve seen faux-meat ribs with plastic pieces as bone. I thought that was pretty weird. I guess there may be vegetarians out there that miss having something inedible in their food?
That is truly strange. And then, of course, there’s also tofurkey.
Good one, Michelle, title and all.
Isn’t Steve clever? Thanks, John. Happy spring!
I didnt realize that it was even fake on the photo
How funny. I love looking at my grandmother’s old recipes. Sometimes I stumble upon one that makes me wonder what they were thinking back then! Thanks for the fun post.
Old recipes are so fun, aren’t they? If a little bland…
Ha! I knew upon reading the post title that this was going to be a good one.
Thanks, Sacha! We’ve had that photo for nearly a year now. Steve kept bugging me about it and finally I said, OK, OK, on April Fool’s Day!
Too funny.. I was squinting at the lines in your “bone” and wondering how they got there. Imagine having to resort to this sort of cooking. We are so blessed!
Don’t they have bones like that up in Canada? 🙂 Kidding aside, you’re so right about that.
I think you have a winning fish there. I know quite a few folk who’d go nuts over your Nutlet and it looks bloody tasty too!