A Holiday Menu Inspired By The Good Ol' Days

With the popularity of Mad Men and the new wave of retro fashions, furniture and home decor, it's no surprise that everyone is dreaming of simpler times. If you're hosting a retro dinner party or want to enjoy some dishes inspired by the '30s, '40s, '50s and '60s, try one of these vintage recipes!

Vintage Christmas menu | SheKnows.com

We looked way back into the archives of some of our favorite magazines to find these vintage recipes. From stuffed clams and gin rickeys to old-fashioned fruit cake, this menu will perfectly match your tufted sofas and Mad Men-inspired dresses.

1

Stuffed clams

 Vintage Christmas menu

Adapted from Simply Recipes

Serves about 5

Ingredients: 

  • 10 large clams (we used quahogs)
  • 3 tablespoons chopped onions
  • 1 stick butter, unsalted
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon dry white wine
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan
  • 1 cup breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 cup chopped basil
  • Salt and pepper

Directions: 

  1. Bring a large pot of water to a rapid boil. Add the clams, reduce heat to a simmer and cook for about 6-10 minutes or until the shells open. Remove the clams until they are cool enough to handle and then carefully peel open and remove the clam meat.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Melt the butter in a large skillet. Add the onion and cook until fragrant, about 4 minutes. Add the clam meat, white wine, lemon juice, breadcrumbs and chopped basil.
  3. Lay the clam shells on a baking dish. Stuff with clam stuffing until filled 2/3-3/4 full. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Bake for about 20 minutes, or until golden brown.
2

Red wine roasted lamb

 Vintage Christmas menu

Adapted from Saveur Magazine

Serves about 4

Ingredients: 

  • 4 medium lamb shanks
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 medium onions, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 carrots, chopped
  • 2 cups dry red wine
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Fresh basil, chopped

Directions: 

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Heat the butter and olive oil in a large Dutch oven over medium heat. Add onions, garlic and carrots, cook until soft. Add lamb shanks and cook until browned on both sides, about 8 minutes.
  2. Pour the red wine, chicken stock, water, bay leaf, salt, pepper and chopped basil to the Dutch oven.
  3. Bake for about 3 hours or until the meat falls off the bone. Garnish with fresh herbs.
3

Gin rickey

 Vintage Christmas menu

Serves about 4

Ingredients: 

  • 5 ounces Tanqueray gin
  • 1 ounce lime juice
  • 4 ounces soda water
  • Fresh mint or limes, for garnish

Directions: 

  1. Mix the gin, lime juice and soda water in a martini mixer. Shake to combine. Pour into a chilled glass 1/2 filled with ice.
4

Old-fashioned fruitcake

Vintage Christmas menu

Makes 1 loaf

Ingredients:

  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup cottage cheese, small curd
  • 2 cups dried cranberries
  • 1 cup chopped pistachios
  • 1 cup dates
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 large egg, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • Grated rind of 1 orange
  • 2 tablespoons orange juice
  • Dash cinnamon

Directions: 

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Grease a standard 9 x 5-inch loaf pan with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, beat the egg, sugars, orange juice, orange rind, vanilla and cottage cheese together. Stir in the flour, baking soda, cranberries, pistachios and dates.
  3. Pour the mix into the prepared loaf pan. Bake for about 70 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.

More vintage-inspired recipes

Retro appetizer recipes
Old-fashioned squash and apple casserole
4 Old-school weeknight meals

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