Vintage Baking Pans
Once more, the adage is proven: complain that something doesn’t exist and whammo! It appears. No sooner did I announce – at the end of last week’s Honey Bar recipe – that 11 ¼ x7 ½ x 1 ½ inch baking pans seemed to be pans from the past than there they were in the new supermarket (our neighborhood’s first Hannaford’s), in the not terribly well stocked housewares aisle. Not exactly, but 11 x 7 x 2, which is close enough.
Now the question is what inspired the manufacturer; very few modern recipes specify a pan of this size: google offers a paltry 1,760 hits when asked for the for roll-the-dice size, versus 102,000 for an 8 inch square.
So evidently the pans are out there, but why buy new when it’s so much fun ( and so environmentally preservational) to collect and use pre-owned models – the ones that are “vintage” in age and attractiveness but not yet “vintage” in price. There’s a ton of terrific tin out there; glass that’s not jadeite is still inexpensive, and yard sale season will be starting soon (if it ever stops raining).
The tasty meal casserole (roughly 6 1/2x 4 ½ ) is, I just learned by looking on e-bay, a Planters peanut collectible… shoulda known from the hat. Ignorance has been useful, though, because I’ve been using them for years for things like custards and potpies. Had their serving-dish nature been known they’d probably never have gone in the oven, even though they’re thick as Pyrex. The popover pan is Griswold cast iron but not the kind collectors chase, so examples can still be found for no more than new pans that aren’t nearly as good. It’s HEAVY, as a popover pan should be; and because there are air spaces between cups the popovers can do just that and still stay crisp and separate.