Like all comfort food from my childhood, this is kinda gross, but I loved it. Squishy, salty, peppery, a little sweet from the bread and peas…omg now I want some, and it’s got about six things in it I shouldn’t eat.
Come to think of it, Shit on a Shingle (also known as SOS, also known as creamed chipped beef on toast) only has about six things in it. Like all good 50s comfort foods, there’s very few fresh nutrients in it. You definitely want the stuff that comes all dried up in a jar like this. (Plus, the jar can be reused as a juice glass! We had dozens of them.) Frozen peas. Cheap bread. My mom used margarine, of course, because I suppose in 1960 that was either a) health food or b) cheaper.
Shit on a shingle was an old servicemen’s staple—my dad was in the Navy, but he knew and loved it as much as the nearest Army guy. They probably used powdered milk, too. Although in WWII, the boys got most of the butter, which was rationed for civilians. Nice to know Uncle Sam was giving them some good stuff.
You can find a bunch of versions of the recipe here, but some of those people are nuts. They add vegetables. They try to reduce the fat.
Well, here is the correct and classic version.
Creamed Chipped Beef on Toast
serves 2 or 3 hungry folks
1 jar (4.5 oz) dried beef
small can (6 oz or less) new young green peas
1 cup milk
3 T butter
3 T white flour
pepper to taste
2 slices soft bread per person, toasted just before serving
Drain the can of peas. Reserve the liquid in case your white sauce comes out too thick.
Slice or dice the dried beef—I think my mom used to quarter the rounds.
Make a white sauce thusly: melt the butter in a heavy pan. Add the flour and whisk briskly. Let the flour cook a bit until it begins to turn yellow. Add the milk and whisk briskly until the sauce thickens.
Stir in the sliced beef and peas. If the mixture is too thick, thin it with a dash of the canned pea liquid.
Season with pepper.
Pour over piping hot toast, two slices per serving.