September 07, 2007

Discontinued Products

I'm not a big QVC fan and haven't really watched much. I know one lady who told me she is addicted and must hide her remote control from herself so she won't order anything.

I attended a tag sale once where the deceased must have been one of their best customers. Her home was literally stuffed with products she had ordered through QVC, many of them still in boxes with the original packing slips. Her kitchen was quite a smorgasbord of goodies.

Savory & Simple Cooking with Savory Seasonings Herb Blends (1994, 96 pp.) was one of the items I picked up at that sale. The author was Virginia Olson who was well-known on QVC as the Nesco lady. She was, in fact, one of their Home Economists and was the author of several Nesco Roaster cookbooks.

The recipes in this book all feature the use of her Savory Seasonings Herb Blends which were all natural with no salt added. There were five varieties: Garden Blend, Cook Blend, Bake Blend, Meat Blend, Poultry Blend and Fish Blend.

It looks like a very nice cookbook. The recipe titles sound delicious, the photographs of the plated food are gorgeous and the recipes themselves seem fairly simple and easy to prepare as the title suggests.

However, the seasoning portion of all the recipes all call for the Savory Seasonings products which apparently no longer exist.

In most cases, when you use a cookbook or recipe and don't like the brand name ingredients you can usually substitute your own favored brand with no problems. Or you can take a recipe with generic ingredients and use whatever brand name product you like.

In situations such as the one found in this cookbook, you would just have to use your best judgement and rely on experience to figure out how to season the dishes. Not a problem for some, but for those who cook directly out of the book, following the recipe to a T, this doesn't work, which renders this cookbook pretty much useless.

It's interesting that out of all the many advertising cookbooks in my collection, that the large percentage of them are still quite useful, even if they might be 50 to 100 years old. In most cases, if the original product doesn't exist anymore, then a comparable one does.

I suppose I should have dug a little further at that sale. I'm fairly confident that I would have found those jars of Savory Seasonings in the lady's cupboard and could have figured out what herbs and spices each blend consisted of.

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