The Best of Taste

The Best of Taste  – the finest food of fifteen nations

The Best of Taste is a cookbook published by SACLANT-NATO – the Supreme Allied Command Atlantic division of NATO, based in Norfolk, Virginia.  On the many occasions and events hosted by the member nations, native cuisines and customs were shared with allied partners.  The idea of documenting these recipes and menus from the fifteen member nations resulted in The Best of Taste. 

The cookbook was first published in 1957, with a second printing in 1960 and a third in 1962 – pictured here is a copy of the 1962 edition.  In addition to recipes from the member nations, a recipe from each nation’s leader is included, and each country has submitted various menus for parties, formal banquets, family dinner, and holiday menus.  The country of origin is attributed to each recipe, the English name of the dish is given, along with the name of the recipe in the country’s native language if the dish originates from a non-English speaking country. 

The cookbook contains the following sections:

  • Foreward/Acknowledgements
  • Wines
  • Heads of State
  • Menus
  • Hors d’Oeuvres and Canapes
  • Soups
  • Seafood
  • Meats
  • Fowl and Game
  • Vegetables and Salads
  • Breads
  • Dishes en Casserole
  • Desserts ~ Pastries, Pies, Cookies, and Cakes
  • Outdoor
  • Miscellaneous – Luncheon dishes, Preserves, Sauces 


Old Fashioned Beef Stew

Dwight David Eisenhower, President of the United States of America

The recipe from the United States is Old-Fashioned Beef Stew, submitted by President Dwight D. Eisenhower. 


2 pounds stewing beef (prime round)
1 pound small Irish potatoes
1 bunch small carrots
3/4 pound small onions
2 fresh tomatoes
2 1/2 pints beef stock
Salt and pepper
Monosodium Glutamate
Assorted spices – (thyme, bay leaves, garlic, etc.); in a cloth bag


Stew meat until tender, add vegetables and spices.  cook until vegetables are done, strain off one cup of stock from the stew, thicken slightly with beef roux mixture.  Pour back into the stew and let simmer until ready to serve (about one-half hour).  For six portions. 



Every member nation submitted sample menus for occasions and holidays, here are a few samples


Snack Luncheon Menu

  • Sherry or Martinis
  • Celery and Olives
  • Hot Cheese Biscuits
  • Sausage Rolls
  • Creamed Chicken and Mushrooms in Tiny Patty Shells
  • Lobster Sandwiches
  • Minced Chicken Salad Sandwiches
  • Brownies
  • Toll House Cookies
  • Tea or Coffee

Editor’s Note: Actually this is not a menu but a new idea for easy, informal entertaining.  It is becoming very popular in Canada, especially around Toronto.  No plates are used as the saucer suffices.”

Formal Dinner Menu

  • Consomme with Sherry
  • Cold Boiled Salmon with Spice Sauce, Imported White Wine
  • Beef Tenderloin with Mushroom Stuffing, Oven-Browned Potatoes, Green Beans, Crusty Curls, Imported Red Wine
  • Rhubarb Ice Cream, Date Bars
  • Savory – Port
  • Coffee – Liqueurs

Family Dinner Menu

  • Pork Chops with Ham Stuffing, Candied Tomato Sauce
  • Corn and Lima Beans
  • Apple Dumplings
  • Coffee

Note:  The complete dinner is cooked in a 350-degree oven so that you can have that hour before dinner free.”


United States

Patio Party Menu

  • Mint Julep Bowl
  • Hawaiian-Style Teriyaki Steaks
  • Raw Vegetables – Supreme Mustard Sauce
  • Shallowbrook Broilers
  • Tossed Geen Salad
  • Garlic Bread in Foil
  • Persimmon Delight
  • Coffee

Thanksgiving Dinner Menu

  • Relish Tray – Carrot Sticks, Celery, Radishes, Green and Ripe Olives
  • Consomme with Sherry and Avocado
  • Roast Turkey – Oyster Stuffing
  • Cranberry-Orange Relish
  • Sweet Potato Casserole
  • Spinach Ring with Creamed Mushrooms
  • Corn Sticks
  • Pumpkin Pie
  • Assorted Fruits and Nuts
  • Coffee
  • Dry White Wine, Champagne
Author: SACLANT-NATO Cookbook Committee
Publisher: George Banta Company; Menasha, Wisconsin
Year Published: 1957
Pages: 244

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