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OP: Meatless Meals

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by Jean Prescott Adams

Nutrition, beauty, and economy: the many benefits of meatless meals abound!

In the early 20th century scientists began studying and understanding the chemical composition of foods and isolating nutrients. Home economists incorporated this new understanding into their approach to domestic science and placed even greater emphasis on nutritious and balanced meals.

Leona Alford Malek (1878–1951)—home economics instructor, writer, and editor—here taking the pen name Jean Prescott Adams, specifically calls for the addition of more fruits and vegetables to the American diet. Meatless Meals (1931) is her approach to what was the most cutting edge science available. She says in her introduction: “The last ten years have opened undreamed-of doors in the realm of bodily welfare and beauty, particularly as affected by the daily menu.” 

The recipes range from blatantly nutrition-oriented (bran lemonade, “health salad”—a slaw served over lettuce cups) to others whose benefits are less obvious to us now: cheese sandwiches fried in pancake batter, chocolate ice-box pudding. However, each of them specifies the minerals and nutrients present.

We are pleased to offer a 1939 fifth printing in Very Good condition, foxed about the edges. Clean and unmarked, with the exception of a sweet gift inscription facing the table of contents. The rear hinge is split—the binding now delicate but sound. Ours lacks the scarce dust jacket, and the case is lightly shelfworn. The blue clothbound cover is whimsically illustrated in the same style as the interior and endpapers.

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