Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Coffee Breaks

A coffee break to me is when I'm at work and need to step away from my desk and walk to the kitchen where I generally discover the pot has been drained and I need to make a new one, return to my desk and wait 5 minutes and proceed back.  Usually I get involved with something and by the time I get back to the kitchen it's gone again and the cycle repeats. Not much of a break, is it.

But this pamphlet dates from an era when "coffee break" meant neighbors (women, of course) taking a break from their household chores (sorry, ladies, this isn't me talking, it's the '70's) and getting together to"klatch", as my mother called it.  From 1978 and Maxwell House Coffee Times, it's "Coffee Breaks with The Friendly Taste of Home". 

As evidenced on the cover and first page, we're talking Maxwell House Instant Coffee.  I guess the idea is your neighbor pops in unexpectedly and you're fresh out of fresh-brewed. I wish she'd call beforehand.

 Each of the recipes inside features another General Foods (parent corporation of Maxwell House) product such as Minute Tapioca and Baker's Angel Flake Coconut.  I see those immersion boilers (see above in "Harvest Gold") at estate sales fairly often.

Post "40% Bran Flakes" are still available, but they are simply called "Bran Flakes" now. Come to think of it, I'm not sure that's true.  While Post still sells a cereal called "Bran Flakes", how can I be sure it's 40% bran?  Now I have to know.  I've submitted the question to the Amazon product site.  I'll keep you posted (ha!).

I'm one of the few people I know who like "Grape Nuts".  The odd thing is, I only like them about once a year.  After going through the whole box, bowl by bowl, I'm done for another year.  I hate banana bread, so don't even suggest I add them there.

"C.W. Post" was another cereal I liked as a kid. It was similar to Quaker "Simply Granola" and Sunbelt's "Fruit and Nut" granola cereal.  According to its Wikipedia entry, it was nearly 28% sugar. No wonder I liked it.

 "For those occasions that are a bit more special. When friends are invited to spend an evening." Not like your annoying neighbor who just pops in any time she pleases.

 If there's one thing my mother taught me, it's to not trifle with strawberries.

 "Be sure to watch for the next Maxwell House Coffee Times booklet".  I'm afraid the Coffee Times was cancelled after it's first edition. I haven't come across any follow up books.

Like many companies, after absorbing a number of other companies (including Burger Chef restaurants), General Foods was absorbed itself into Kraft which then merged with Heinz. Their parent company is Phillip Morris.  Good to see they've diversified from cigarettes.


  1. i had a red version of those hot pots in college. it boiled many, MANY ramen noodle meals for me.

    what's with the crazy hyphenation in all the headers in this booklet, anyway? didn't they have proofers? "Take-a-quick-break," "Take-Along-a-Break," "Plan-a-Break"... it's just plain unnecessary. i blame the 70s.

    1. >i had a red version of those hot pots in college. it boiled many, MANY >ramen noodle meals for me.
      Excellent application for these. They are just about the fastest way to boil water.
      >what's with the crazy hyphenation

    2. it's hard to beat the style of the hot pot, too. and the various colors were great.

      i forgot to mention earlier that i love Grape Nuts, but they are super high in calories. a little goes a long way -- just ask Euell Gibbons!


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