Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Have a very Fritos Thanksgiving

Here's a recipe-filled advertising pamphlet that was published long ago by Fritos. That famous corn chip was "invented" by Charles Elmer Doolin (1903–1959) with The Frito Company, based in Texas, in 1932. In 1961, a merger created the Frito-Lay that we know today and that serves as a key component of so many Super Bowl parties.

So, since this pamphlet makes no specific mention of Frito-Lay, I think we can assume it dates to between 1932 and 1961.

The front measures 3½ inches by 6 inches. It folds out to four panels, which are printed front and back. It was geared toward restaurants, as the front states: "Offering Appealing Menu Variety For Exacting Appetites Of Restaurant Patrons."

One section includes a bit of contextual history:
"One may delve into the food customs of the Ancients and discover that a goodly portion of their commerce consisted of corn, wine and oil. Throughout the ages, corn is recognized as a most sustaining grain. Its planting and cultivation provided protection against famine. Corn was a chief ally to the empire builders of the old world; a friend to the pioneers of the new. ... FRITOS are a friendly food companion. Make them your ally in pleasing patrons and producing PROFITS."
The next section further stresses that notion of profits:
"The popularity FRITOS have attained in the food favor of millions, is by no means a passing fancy. More and more people are being captivated by the enticing taste of these new Mexican crisp chips, and are constantly finding manifold uses for their nourishing goodness. Being alert to the taste choice of your patrons, you are anxious to offer appealing menu variety to exacting appetites. Moreover, the quickness, ease and economy of preparing new feature dishes — with due respect to net profit — must have consideration."
And thus there are six recipes included in the pamphlet. All indicate the cost, per serving, of the ingredients for the restaurant and some suggest the menu price for the finished dish. For example the Frito Omelet has an estimated cost of six cents per order and a suggest menu price of 25 cents.

Here are two of the recipes from the pamphlet:

Frito Hot Tamale Pie
  • 2 cups ground meat
  • ¼ inch small garlic, clove, cut fine
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1½ cups meat stock
  • 8 ozs. FRITOS
Fry meat in 2 tablespoons fat, until done, mix salt, garlic and chili powder with meat and add meat stock. If no meat stock in available, use bullion cubes, and then line a baking dish, sides and bottom with crushed FRITOS, add meat mixture and cover top with remaining FRITOS.

Bake from 20 to 30 minutes in hot oven. Serve from casserole or individual meat pie dish. This is very good served with a salad, pickles or olives and cherry tarts.

Time: 20 to 30 minutes — Approx. cost 28c

At least 4 servings — Individual cost 7c

Suggested price 25c per order. Upward, when incorporated on a dinner with side dishes. Variations to suit Chef's preference can be made.

Frito Dressing
  • 3 cups moistened FRITO crumbs
  • 1 cup moistened bread crumbs
  • 2 small onions, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons melted butter
  • ½ cup celery, chopped
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 teaspoons sage, or more
Mix moistened FRITO crumbs, bread, onions, celery, salt, sage and pepper. Add melted butter and stuff fowls, game or heart. A distinctively flavored dressing that is sure to please.

Approx. cost: 10c

Variations to suit Chef's preference can be made.

* * *

The other recipes are the aforementioned Frito Omelet, Frito Enchiladas, Frito Peppers, and Macaroni La Frito.

P.S.: I think it's best that we never again discuss "Cooked Heart with Frito Stuffing."

P.S. 2: I received no money or Fritos in exchange for this post.


  1. "More and more people are being captivated by the enticing taste of these new Mexican crisp chips, and are constantly finding manifold uses for their nourishing goodness."
    I now feel my degree was a waste of time. I shall never be able to achieve such levels of cazzate elevate:)

    1. I feel like "manifold" is a word that should be associated with plastics or coal, not food products.

  2. Should I be embarrassed to say the Fritos dressing sounds pretty good?

  3. I'm with Undine, for too, think the Fritos dressing sounds pretty good.