I recently bought “The Gold Cook Book” by Louis P. De Gouy first published in 1947, mine is the 5th printing from July 1950. I was intrigued by the book, and I haven’t been disappointed. The recipes are more a road map to fixing an interesting dish as opposed to being step-by-step instructions. Our tastes and preferences sure have changed over the last 50 years! For instance, how many times have you made “Eclair d’Anchois” (Anchovy Eclairs) for your book club? or Super Bowl Party?
The main reason I like this book is because it lays out a “road map” to complete a dish, with the assumption that the reader/cook knows something about cooking and has some skills to accomplish/finish the dish with some success. This is pretty much the way I cook. I like to read the recipe, consider the ingredients, buy what I need to make the dish. I then read the recipe again noting the oven temperatures and cooking times, and then I hardly ever look at the cookbook/recipe again. At some point, the cook in me needs to rely on some previously obtained knowledge or instinct and just go with the flow.
So, relying on this wonderful cookbook, and perhaps a few other vintage cookbooks, I thought I would share a vintage recipe from time-to-time.
As written, and with credit to Chef de Gouy:
Anchovy Eclairs (Hot)
These eclairs should have the appearance of miniature sausage rolls.
Roll puff pastry out as thinly as possible; cut into oblong pieces. Lay on each a well-washed well-dried and trimmed anchovy filet slightly shorter than the pastry, fold together and seal the edge over with a little cold water or slightly beaten egg white. Sprinkle each eclair with a little grated parmasean cheese; arrange on an ungreased baking sheet and bake in a very hot oven (425-450 F) for a few minutes, or until nicely browned and glazed. Serve at once. NOTE: Small cooked or canned sardines may also be prepared in the same manner.
Comment: Who makes puff pastry anymore? Use the frozen kind, and thaw before using. Serve with a Cosmo or Martini, stretch out on your mid-century modern couch, and reflect on anchovies.