Every once in a while, there will be a commercial for some kitchen gadget that promises to make your cooking chores easier. You can make delicious meals with this gizmo, you can wow your family with specially-prepared meals from this whatizit, and you can make cooking great again.
Make cooking great again. Someone should stitch that on a red baseball cap. Nah, that’s been done before, I think…
Anyways, I remember seeing this commercial for a special type of food processor. You put an item in this device – a potato, an apple, a tomato, an onion, maybe a block of cheese – and you can dice it, slice it, and essentially entice it.
Yep… it’s the Popeil Veg-O-Matic.
Now where did I say that I “saw” this commercial yesterday? I saw this commercial back in the 1960’s. But wow, see how swift and efficient this device is?
A quick glance on eBay, and I found not only a working Veg-O-Matic, but the additional “wedge” cutter blade.
Not bad for a piece of injection plastic and some wire cutting inserts.
All right, so I’ve got this little device. Let’s make some food with it.
The Veg-O-Matic came with a booklet for use and maintenance, along with two recipes – a recipe for Waldorf salad, and a recipe for potato pancakes (Swiss style). I don’t know if “Swiss style” means my food will have holes in it, if it will yodel when I serve it, or if it will have a cuckoo pop out at the top of the hour … I kid, I kid…
Anyways, the recipe required chopping several potatoes, a cored apple, and an onion in the Veg-O-Matic. Then you mix the ingredients in a mixing bowl with some egg yolks, 3/4 cup of flour, and salt and pepper to taste.
First thing. Whatever you plan on chopping, make sure it’s washed, peeled and that it fits through the cutting blades. Also, you need to gently score the potato by pressing it slowly into the blade, before slamming the Veg-O-Matic lid down.
Second thing. Whatever you slam down through those blades, the cut foods will fly EVERYWHERE. This is not a cutting utensil known for neatness.
Okay. A few foods diced up, mixed with eggs and flour in a mixing bowl. Looks almost like a lumpy pudding.
I dropped some shortening into my iron skillet, and poured the mixture into the frying pan. Now I don’t know who wrote the recipe fifty-five years ago, but they must have been feeding an army – or a nuclear family with a mother, a father, three point two children and a dog named Mr. Tinkles.
Still, after all the cooking … this came out.
Well, it’s less potato pancakes and more of a potato hash. But it was tasty. It was also a big, big meal – I maybe finished a quarter of it. So … we introduce you to the ULTIMATE bachelor cooking recipe … place the food in the fridge, and tomorrow take the food out of the fridge, put it in the microwave for four minutes, and eat as either a breakfast or as last-minute supper.
As for the Veg-O-Matic, I’m sure that when I get more used to it and what I can use it for, I’m sure I’ll have more success with its output.
Trust me. I have no problem using vintage cameras, so why not introduce vintage cooking and food prep gear to my life?
Now if I can use this to cube up some Spam … I could make some super-delicious Spam Stroganoff a la Veg-O-Matic … yum-o…