Grape Milk Shake – A Retro Recipe Test

Posted on Mar 7 2012 - 6:31am by RetroRuth

Whew. Tom and I are exhausted. We just got back from a 5-night trip to Las Vegas and wow, it was ever crazy. Yep, crazy. Non-stop debauchery. 24 hours a day. Yep. Yeppity-yeppity-yep.

Okay, so…most of that was a lie.  

I have to say we aren’t a very exciting couple. Moderate gambling. Moderate drinking. Moderate spending. Probably the most scandalous thing we did was not share entrees at restaurants. Which, if you’ve been to Vegas, you know that they feed you enough for five people, two dogs and a very hungry ferret. So, after 6 days of ordering 3 meals a day of junk and wasting 2/3rds of it, I was actually looking forward to coming home and cooking for us.

Even if “cooking” consisted of mixing three liquids together.


It’s Grape Milk Shake, people. Much crazier than anything in Vegas!

Betty Feezor Grape Milkshake001

This recipe is from Betty Feezor’s Best TV-tested Recipes. Betty Feezor, who was a fantastic woman and an even better cook, had a television show in North Carolina from 1953-1977. It was great and I love the cookbook I have. Seriously. If you ever have a chance to pick up one of her cookbooks, do it. She was incredibly talented and inventive in her cooking. Some of her recipes, especially in the baking section, use techniques and ingredient combos I have never seen anywhere else.


Which, knowing Betty Feezor, makes the fact that you are combining grape juice and evaporated milk  in this recipe not as strange as it should be.


And, even though the term “milkshake” may immediately bring to mind ice cream, in this case it refers to the technique more than the ingredients.

Even though I didn’t actually shake mine. It ended up being more of a “Grape Milk Stir.”

Or, to be absolutely precise, Tom’s Grape Milk Stir.


“That’s really some color, isn’t it?”


“What’s in this?”



“I hate it when you say that.”


“This is grape juice and milk, isn’t it?”

Evaporated milk.”

“I hate it when you say that.”

The Verdict: Not great. But then, I am not a big fan of fruit juice mixed with milk. Tom thought it was okay. He drank his glass, and part of another, and then he was done. Probably would have been much better if it would have been made with ice cream. I am disappointed with this one, but I am not giving up on Betty Feezor!

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

  1. Beverly March 7, 2012 at 7:55 am - Reply


    • RetroRuth March 8, 2012 at 3:14 pm - Reply

      Hee hee!!

  2. veg-o-matic March 7, 2012 at 10:49 am - Reply

    “What’s in this?”
    Oh man, I practically peed myself laughing. After all you’ve put Tom through, I’m surprised he let you get away with that. ‘Cause it could have contained, oh, I don’t know–liver, perhaps.
    Excellent Tomface™, too.

    • RetroRuth March 8, 2012 at 3:14 pm - Reply

      Ha! Glad you liked it. 🙂

      Yeah, I’ve given him mystery drinks with liver in them before. It’s true!

  3. Sara In AZ March 7, 2012 at 11:13 am - Reply

    Ha! See I told y’all you should share! 😉

    And NEVER give up on Betty Feezor!!!

    • RetroRuth March 8, 2012 at 3:14 pm - Reply

      Never EVER! 🙂

      And yeah, we probably should have shared more…you were right…

  4. nickarmadillo March 7, 2012 at 3:37 pm - Reply

    I actually went into the kitchen and tried a grape shake with ice cream after I read this.

    Verdict: Actually pretty delicious

    I think that the added vanilla kind of mellows out the grape flavor and makes it taste much less icky than it sounds.

    I might actually go have another.

    • RetroRuth March 8, 2012 at 3:13 pm - Reply

      Yes! I think this one totally needed ice cream. It was missing the vanilla and I think it needs the extra sugar, too. Surprisingly, the grape juice on it’s own wasn’t sweet enough! Glad you tried it with ice cream and glad to hear it was good!

  5. Toni March 7, 2012 at 3:50 pm - Reply

    Tom is hilarious. Great faces.

    • RetroRuth March 8, 2012 at 3:12 pm - Reply

      Isn’t he a goof?? It is so fun to take pictures of him trying stuff…

  6. Buzz March 7, 2012 at 7:24 pm - Reply

    I just love the stylish William Henry Harrison glass!

    • RetroRuth March 8, 2012 at 3:11 pm - Reply

      He died in 30 days!

      It’s Tom’s favorite glass…

  7. Deena March 7, 2012 at 7:32 pm - Reply

    When I was in elementary and junior high school, any time I was sick, I’d tune in to WBT to watch Betty Feezor’s show. I’d even come home from the pool in the summer to watch her cook and sew. She seemed so gracious and kind, and gave viewers the feeling that they could make anything.

    It makes me happy to see that she’s remembered by so many, and makes me wish I had one of her cookbooks. I’m going to have to try to find one.

    Thanks for the lovely memories!

    • RetroRuth March 8, 2012 at 3:11 pm - Reply

      Wasn’t she just the best?? A lady with real style! 🙂

  8. Annie B. March 9, 2012 at 11:22 am - Reply

    He hates it when you say that. Hmmm, next time, just give him a wicked smile.

    Ruth, I don’t think even the addition of copious amount of alcohol could save this one.

  9. BlueRoc85 March 25, 2012 at 2:39 pm - Reply

    “This is grape juice and milk, isn’t it?” Hilarious! I couldn’t stop laughing!

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