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February 9, 2011

Mid-Century Menu – Cracker Kabobs Tutorial

By RetroRuth

Good Housekeeping App Book001

So, I might not have had the best time watching the Super Bowl, but I had a great time cooking for it. After I finished the fun stuff for our two person Super Bowl Party (Artichoke dip, taco dip and buffalo chicken meatballs), I broke out the mid-century snacks because…well…I had too. I had the greatest snack book ever!

Check out this beauty.  It’s the Appetizer Book from Good Housekeeping and was published in 1958. It is filled with the most amazing crap to serve. Really. And one of the greatest things is right on the cover. Crackers, olives and Spam on toothpicks and jammed into a candle!

And the daisies are a nice touch, too.

Good Housekeeping App Book002

Unfortunately, I couldn’t find the proper-sized unscented candle (vanilla scented Spam? Really? That stuff is bad enough on its own!) so I decided to take the easy way out, and just shove everything into a grapefruit.


The ingredients here are mixed with those for Planetary Frankfurters, which are hilarious and are coming up next week!


Ah, Spam. How mid-century housewives loved you.


Cubed up and ready to go. 

As a side note, we gave one of our cats a piece of Spam, which she gobbled down faster than anything that has ever been in her mouth before. It turned her into a Spam-crazed maniac for the rest of the day, jumping from counters to tables frantically trying to grab another piece.

It’s powerful, powerful stuff people. Use with caution.


Anyway, on to the Snack Ball.

Take a toothpick and a cracker.


Insert toothpick into cracker.


Add a chunk of whatever you have laying around.  In this case, it is an uncooked (eek!) piece of Spam, complete with the meaty gelatin that clings to the Spam when you de-can it.


Add a chunk of something else.


Waa-laa!  Perfect every time.


Then take your kabob and plunge it into an unsuspecting grapefruit.

Warning: Grapefruits WERE harmed in the making of this recipe.


Vary as much or as little as you like until you run out of cubes or space on your grapefruit.


Gorgeous, isn’t it? Like a Mid-Century Medusa.


Tom, unnecessarily jamming and entire cracker kabob into his mouth.


This is the look I got when I told him to stop it.


And this is him chewing said kabob.


And this is him not being impressed.

The Verdict: Fun. Basically just cheese and crackers jammed in a grapefruit. Definitely a different way to serve snacks.  Some bologna or  sausage can be substituted for the Spam, or you can just leave it out altogether. A big plus is how easy it is!

Hmmm…I wonder how they would taste jammed into a bacon-scented candle…

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16 Responses to Mid-Century Menu – Cracker Kabobs Tutorial

  1. Sara in AZ Reply

    February 9, 2011 at 10:51 am

    A candle as an appetizer holder thingy = awesome! 🙂 hee! That is hilarious! But a grapefruit, even better! Ummmmmm wait, why wasn’t I invited over for the big super bowl party??? I love dip! And Tom not being impressed by your cracker making ability, well that is just sad. LOVE that “not impressed” pic!

  2. Eartha Kitsch Reply

    February 9, 2011 at 12:26 pm

    I have that book too but have never noticed that they maimed a candle! I’m going to take your advice about never giving Spam to a cat. Cats have addictive personalities and Spam is just the kind of thing that would make them tweeked out junkies. I can’t wait to see the Planetary Frankfurters! (which would make a great band name by the way!)

  3. Barbara Reply

    February 9, 2011 at 1:14 pm

    You are aware that Spam is “precooked”, right?

    That was truly one original recipe!

  4. Toni Reply

    February 9, 2011 at 3:23 pm

    Spam may be precooked, but eating it without cooking off some of the fat… *shudder*

  5. Elise Reply

    February 9, 2011 at 4:19 pm

    Ladies, this is the first time I’ve commented on your site–and what an amazing one it is. I’m reading your posts daily, it’s so nice to have found such kindred spirits!

    Anyway, after reading about your lovely grapefruit centerpiece, I was wondering if you’d heard about the Astro-Weenie Christmas Tree (http://www.charlesphoenix.com/2006/11/the-astro-weenie-christmas-tree/). It’s pretty incredible; I made one for my Christmas party this year and it was a huge hit!

    I promise I’ll stop lurking and come out of hiding more often. You ladies are always one of the best highlights of my day!

  6. RetroRuth Reply

    February 9, 2011 at 6:36 pm

    Argh! I just finished writing out a long, personalized reply to all your lovely comments, and my internet went down during critical mass and lost everything! Rats! So, we are going to do this again, abbreviated style.

    Sara – I expect you to use nothing but candles to hold your food from now on.

    Eartha – Remind me why we love cats, again?

    Barbara – Yep, we know Spam is precooked, but eating it straight from the can is like eating an uncooked hot dog. Possible, but just not right.

    Toni – Thanks for having my back on the meat gelatin!

    Elise – Welcome to the fold! Yes, please come out of the shadows and into the light!

  7. ae Reply

    February 9, 2011 at 6:41 pm


  8. ae Reply

    February 9, 2011 at 6:42 pm

    Nice picture of you, Ruth!

  9. Barbara Reply

    February 10, 2011 at 11:48 am

    I love uncooked hot dogs!! Man, you can tell you’re all young! I was raised before food was BAD! 🙂 Uncooked hot dogs from the butcher shop were treats for being good!!

    • RetroRuth Reply

      February 10, 2011 at 12:09 pm

      Oh Barbara…are you really sure you want to advertise that stuff??? 🙂

  10. Two Barking Dogs Reply

    February 10, 2011 at 2:17 pm

    its Sputnik Kebobs!

  11. Becky Reply

    February 10, 2011 at 2:37 pm

    I am cracking up at Mid-Century Medusa – particularly since that olive right in the middle looks like an eye!

  12. Annie B. Reply

    February 10, 2011 at 5:50 pm

    Grapefruit abuse! I’m reporting you to Anita Bryant.

  13. ae Reply

    February 10, 2011 at 10:14 pm

    I agree with Barbara. Uncooked hot dogs are so… good. Use to have a cooked one for lunch at school–my mom put it in my thermos. Uncooked were for snack time.

  14. Andrea Reply

    February 11, 2011 at 2:13 am

    Ok, I must admit, I threw up a little in my mouth when I read this:
    “complete with the meaty gelatin that clings to the Spam when you de-can it.”

    There is something so completely wrong with the concept of “meaty gelatin”!

  15. Barbara Reply

    February 11, 2011 at 3:42 pm

    I will never apologize for loving uncooked hot dogs.

    You know you can rinse Spam off, right?

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