While scouring decades old Sears catalogs for my book, I discovered that there was a brief moment in which Merry Mushrooms microwave cookware was available.
It was the end of the 1970s, a decade filled with gas shortages, stagflation, disco, the end of Vietnam, flared pants, social justice movements, and the introduction of computers and 911. Add into this mix the proliferation of the microwave oven, which was invented in 1947. By 1967, the ovens were small and sort of affordable enough to appear in American kitchens. In the mid-1970s, microwave ovens were outselling gas ranges and were found in 60% of homes. To capitalize on the rise of the time-saving cooking method, community colleges, test kitchens, and housewares companies and began offering microwave cooking classes, cookbooks, and cookware.
Sears was no different. Looking in catalogs from 1978 and 1979, Merry Mushrooms decals were affixed to several Thermo-plastic products. These include: a baking ring (Bundt pan), cake pan, a set of 3 casserole dishes, a Dutch oven, muffin pan, pie plate, popcorn popper, roast pan with cover, roast rack, serving dishes with a tray, and a slow cooker.
Other cookware appear alongside these items, though no fungi are discernable on these items: bacon rack, cookie sheet, round lid, and divided plates with covers.
Even though microwave cooking was reasonably popular for about a decade, the cookware, with or without Merry Mushrooms, was offered for only a short time. To date I've never seen any of these items in person or anywhere online.
Do you have any Merry Mushrooms microwave cookware? I'd love to see it!
UPDATE 5/30/21: Microwave cookware has been confirmed!
2/18/2022 11:51:31 am
Hello! I have the set of three casserole dishes and was trying to figure out if they were oven safe when I came upon your website. They say "FOR RANGE AND MICROWAVE", but I think range means stove top, not oven?
2/18/2022 08:40:51 pm
Thanks for your question! A range combines both an oven and a stovetop. So in this case, your dish is safe in the oven, on the stovetop, and in the microwave.
12/13/2022 05:39:14 pm
I have 8, 9, and 7. I paid 50$ for. They were sitting in an antique mall for months before I started collecting MM. I love them so much.
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