“I’m trying to help a lady who is looking for a recipe for Beef Wellington. It was originally printed in the 1970s or 1980s, in an issue the McCall's Cooking School Magazine. The ingredients include Madeira wine, pate, celery, carrots, garlic, and shallots, but not onions, and parchment paper not puff pastry. You cook the vegetables, chop them, wrap them in cheese cloth, and squeeze out the juice using the handle of a wooden spoon to twist the cloth. The juice is used in cooking; dispose of what remains in the cheese cloth. I’m not having any success. Can you help me?” The Newton Falls Public Library staff can sympathize with the frustration of trying to find that missing recipe.
There is not a single McCall’s cookbook on the seventeen shelves of cookbooks owned by the library, nor in our shared TiPL [Trumbull Independent Public Library Consortium] catalog. Our staff expanded the search online and found a couple of websites with similar recipes. At www.foodtimeline.org/foodmeats.html#beefwellington we found Julia Child’s recipe. community.cookinglight.com/showthread.php?t=104317 had Beef Wellington Without Fear. While both of these recipes had similarities to the one requested, neither was “the” recipe. Another website, www.chef.com has many of the McCall's Cooking School recipes, but not the one needed.
In our search, we discovered that it was published in 1984 and was subscription based. The purchaser received binders, and then periodically pages to insert. We checked the Ohio Shares MORE statewide catalog for “McCall's Cooking School Magazine.” We could not find the magazine, but we did find that the Ridgeway Branch of Ridgemont Public Library owns volumes 1 and 2 of the 3 volume McCall's Cooking School: step-by-step directions for mistake-proof recipes set. We contacted them and their librarian went to look for the item. She returned our call with the sad news that there were 3 pages missing from the meat section of the loose leaf binders; one of which was the Beef Wellington Recipe.
We contacted our patron. She explained that she is a “recipe hunter” who routinely searches for lost recipes. She was contacted to search for this recipe. While she owns a huge collection of cookbooks and single recipes; she does not have this particular magazine. She is hoping that one of our patrons saved their issues of McCall’s Cooking School Magazine and would be willing to share the recipe with us. If you have or find this recipe, please contact Carol at the Newton Falls Public Library, 204 S. Canal St., Newton Falls, Ohio 44444, 330-872-1282, fax 330-872-9153, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.