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Thursday, September 29, 2011

"Dead Celebrities Cookbook..." by Frank DeCaro~Deathly Hallows Never Tasted So Good!

Title:  Dead Celebrities Cookbook: A Resurrection of Recipes from the More Than 145 Stars of Stage and Screen
Published by: HCI
Pages:  385
Genre:  House & Garden, Cookbooks

Book Summary :

If you've ever fantasized about feasting on Frank Sinatra's Barbecued Lamb, lunching on Lucille Ball's "Chinese-y Thing," diving ever-so-neatly into Joan Crawford's Poached Salmon, or wrapping your lips around Rock Hudson's cannoli – and really, who hasn't? – hold on to your oven mitts!
In The Dead Celebrity Cookbook: A Resurrection of Recipes by 150 Stars of Stage and Screen, Frank DeCaro—the flamboyantly funny Sirius XM radio personality best known for his six-and-a-half-year stint as the movie critic on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart—collects hundreds of recipes passed on from legendary stars of stage and screen, proving that before there were celebrity chefs, there were celebrities who fancied themselves chefs.
Their all-but-forgotten recipes—rescued from out-of-print cookbooks, musty biographies, vintage magazines, and dusty pamphlets—suggest a style of home entertaining ripe for reexamination if not revival, while reminding intrepid gourmands that, for better or worse, Hollywood doesn't make celebrities (or cooks) like it used to.

Elizabeth Taylor's Chicken with Avocado and Mushrooms
Farrah Fawcett's Sausage and Peppers
Liberace's Sticky Buns
Bette Davis's Red Flannel Hash
Bea Arthur's Good Morning Mushroom Tomato Toast
Dudley Moore's Crème Brûlée
Gypsy Rose Lee's Portuguese Fish Chowder
John Ritter's Famous Fudge
Andy Warhol's Ghoulish Goulash
Vincent Price's Pepper Steak
Johnny Cash's Old Iron Pot Family-Style Chili
Vivian Vance's Chicken Kiev
Sebastian Cabot's Avocado Surprise
Lawrence Welk's Vegetable Croquettes
Ann Miller's Cheese Soufflé
Jerry Orbach's Trifle
Totie Fields's Fruit Mellow
Irene Ryan's Tipsy Basingstoke
Klaus Nomi's Key Lime Tart
Richard Deacon's Bitter and Booze
Sonny Bono's Spaghetti with Fresh Tomato Sauce

And many others from breakfast to dessert.

Your Dame's Spicey Review:

"The Dead Celebrity Cookbook" makes you wish you were at a banquet of the dead.  Honestly,  Frank DeCaro tells tales of celebrities and shares their secret, homey recipes in such a way that you want to go "down under" with them.  Alas, it's impossible--to most of us!  For cookbook readers everywhere...this is one for your library.

Mr. Decaro is a funny character, and a gifted writer.  His characterizations and talent for focusing on perfect highlights that show us the nature of famous celebrities, brings a certain bubbly brightness to his cookbook.  When you read his quips and synopses of such celebrities as Johnny Carson and Joan Crawford you can't help feeling they are people you could spend time with over dinner. 

Let's talk about the recipes.  Man, oh, man!  There are sooo many to try!  As a Southerner, I have to try Johnny Cash's fried okra.  There are pies galore, lots of fish and casseroles.  Yum!  These celebs knew how to cook and entertain friends;  I suspect the gatherings were like family times.  Interestingly enough, many were health conscious; probably in order to keep those beautiful figures.

Set into categories, such as:  Batman Capers, I Lunch Lucy, and Watching A Detective (Cook), just to mention a few, and to give you an idea of how much fun this cookbook is.  The tidbits of information about cast members of famous shows brings back memories!  I loved being reminded about Dinah Shore, Merv Griffin and others... And, having a Bette Davis recipe is practically like gold for a fan like I am.

When all's said and done, I'd kill (die) for this cookbook.  It's a dance with the dead that will stick with you and will offer friends a ghostly conversation at a dead celebrity-based dinner party.  What fun to know so many details of the actors we grew up watching, believing in and loving.  Here's to Frank DeCaro for bringing us this wonderful book...and here's looking at all our beloved celebrities.

How about a Halloween Dinner Party using this crazy cookbook this year!?  Fabuloso!

5 stars for this cookbook keeper!



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