The Archive – "Eggs Oriental"

Posted on Sep 1 2010 - 7:09am by RetroRuth


*Note – Our recent contest for the Worst Mid-Century Recipe forced my brain to reluctantly recall the many horrible things we have made on this blog. Eggs Oriental was prominent in those memories. This post was originally published in April 2009, and looking at pictures of it still make me gag!

You know, I don’t consider myself to be the most orderly person. Or the most driven person. I have great ideas, but, like most people, a good majority of them never really pan out.  But here it is, only three weeks into my Mid-Century Menu project, and I have already met my goal of finding a ridiculous recipe that really shouldn’t be made. Mission accomplished.


This week’s recipe is from the slightly (slightly?!?) disturbing cookbook put out by Heinz Ketchup.

This recipe is bad. Really, really bad. I wonder if I should even finish this post?  It is so horrible that it might disgust all you nice, innocent readers, who only came  out of curiosity to see what I made. It might cause you to never return again.  And then it might cause you to spread the news all over Twitter and Digg, and might cause everyone to recoil in horror if they even read the name of my blog, let alone go and visit it.

The recipe is that bad. Really.

Don’t believe me?  Well, here. Look for yourself. ketchup002

Eggs Oriental, huh?  You coulda fooled me.  It looks like Eggs in Cream of Mushroom Soup. With ketchup. They could have at least added some soy sauce!

But as always, Hubs was game, so off we went.


Not so bad, right?  Nothing wrong with some prepped ingredients.  Except fooooooooor……


this bowl. Which is all the “seasoning” for this dish. Yum.

eggs-oriental-012The mushrooms and green peppers, happily cooking in a quarter cup (!) of butter. This is a lot of butter. Half that would have sufficed for the small amount of veggies that needed to be cooked.


Far too much butter, browning in the pan.


All the “seasonings” added to the pan. At this point, the mixture started to give off the most noxious smell. If anyone has ever smelled cream of mushroom soup with ketchup in it, it is not a good mix. Not at all.


After adding the egg slices, I turned to Hubs and said, “The eggs better make this magically taste better. Otherwise this is going to be bad.”

Hubs was unusually silent during the cooking, except for an occasional burst of incredulous laughter.


Finished up and plated. All one can really say is….Eww.  I decided to serve it over noodles because…well, it seemed like a sin to serve it over rice. I was already wasting enough ingredients, I wasn’t about to waste some of our good brown rice.


Being perversely enjoyed by Hubs. He couldn’t stop laughing throughout the whole meal. It was truly horrible. The smell was amazingly bad, and every time I took a bite I was shocked by the combination of ketchup and cream soup.  The eggs surprisingly did help, making it edible. But it was far from delicious.

The Verdict: Horrible

As I was sitting there, staring at and smelling this plate of food, I realized that serving bad food is a pretty new thing for me.  I was unhappy, even uncomfortable, with the idea that this was our dinner. That I had made….this thing that tasted horrible. It was a pretty new experience for me.   As an adventurous cook, I have made things in the past that hadn’t gone exactly as planned, but nothing had ever, EVER been this bad.  It was a strange feeling.  I was definitely out of my comfort zone.


I made it through the serving on my plate, but it was a close one.  Hubs ate more, mostly because he had just gone for a long run and was really hungry.  But even he was eventually forced to stop by the smell. The rest hit the trash.

*From the Mid-Century Menu Archive!

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I love everything retro, vintage, mid-century, kitsch and all things atomic! A 21st century housewife just trying to fit the 50's. I have a passion for vintage recipes and an enormous vintage cookbook collection that I keep testing, even though by now I should know better. Creator of Mid-Century Menu (, No Pattern Required (, and I Ate The 80's (

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11 Comments so far. Feel free to join this conversation.

  1. Annie B. September 1, 2010 at 9:19 am - Reply

    Ruth, that recipe is an insult to your beautiful Fiestaware!

  2. Sharon September 1, 2010 at 10:29 am - Reply

    Oh gosh, I have this cookbook and it truly is filled to the brim with horrific recipes! There is one for an ice cream topping made with ketchup and peaches …. I mean, WHAT?!?

    I think we can all clearly see why there were no photos included in the book. Very. Very. Bad.

  3. Barbara September 1, 2010 at 10:39 am - Reply

    First, I have to wonder which ingredient makes this dish “Oriental”. Secondly, WHO THINKS OF THESE RECIPES??

    Do you actually eat something after these awful dinners?

  4. Lidian September 1, 2010 at 11:36 am - Reply

    Oh my stars, you are so brave to make the horrible retro recipes! I just post about them and shudder 😉

    That is just so terrible it is kind of wonderful (in a horrible way, if that makes any sense. The tomato-headed chef is scaring me, too.

  5. Brat (aka Ace) September 1, 2010 at 1:29 pm - Reply

    This is nasty! But the look on Tom’s face made me smile. 🙂

  6. Miss Marwood September 1, 2010 at 3:29 pm - Reply

    Another great contender for the past contest, really. This is godawful horrible, I mean I hate mushrooms in any shape or form, but this one tops it all! I could not have touched it for the life of me. Barks!
    I agree with Tom, it’s one for either laughing or crying! 🙂 Yum!

  7. Jen September 10, 2010 at 9:51 pm - Reply

    Wow … I don’t think I’ve ever laughed and gagged simultaneously before …

  8. mels June 8, 2011 at 7:23 am - Reply

    i love the blatantly racist illustration. i wonder how many people grew up thinking asians don’t actually have eyes.

  9. Spencer February 26, 2014 at 4:24 pm - Reply

    Oddly, this isn’t all that far from the Betty Crocker strogonoff recipe much beloved by my father. Swap the eggs for sirloin and you’re pretty much there, especially when served over noodles. Delightful!

  10. Handful March 11, 2015 at 10:13 pm - Reply

    Somehow I ran across this blog during the top 4 most horriblest dishes EVER. I must say, you are one brave lady and Hubs is quite the good sport.

    I remember the ghastly gelatin mold monstrosities of the 60’s and 70’s. Thank goodness my mother never fell prey but I was them at potlucks.

    I have Mom’s old Westinghouse cookbook that was a wedding gift in 1956. AHHHHH! Thanks for the laughs.

  11. Handful March 11, 2015 at 10:15 pm - Reply

    I can’t find a place to subscribe!

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