Monday, May 3, 2010

what would be YOUR last meal?

I came across this book during one of my junk shop hauls, and knew that it was exactly the type of subject matter I love: a little warped, slightly morbid and somehow combined with a foodie twist. What would your last supper be? "Last Suppers" by James L. Dickerson attempts to answer that question based on the replies of film, television and music stars, political and business personalities, authors, sports celebrities and of course, famous chefs. The celebrity list is a little "dated" in a 1990's way, but the answers to the question of "what would your last supper be?" are all interesting and revealing.

Some replies are predictable. As you can imagine, the choices of chefs tended to be like this one: "Napoleon of Seared Cape Cod Sea Scallops with Yukon Gold Potatoes, Winter Truffles, and an Asparagus Emulsion". And but of course, the chairman and CEO of Boston Beer Company suggests a different Samuel Adams beer with each of his courses. Some selections leave you scratching your head - George Zimmer, CEO of The Men's Wearhouse chooses oatmeal with brown sugar and low-fat milk. Um, I'm going for the unhealthiest, fat-laden fried and cheesy things I can find, dude. No way would oatmeal be the last thing I eat on my last day on this planet.

I found my own choice to be most similar to Gregg Allman's: catfish and hush puppies, red beans and rice, sweet iced tea, and tiramisu (although I'd likely swap fried chicken for the catfish and get a beer in there somewhere). Or, maybe Ann Coulter's last supper: margaritas.

A guest list for each celeb's last supper is also included, and many of the menu choices are accompanied by recipes (although the one that I really wanted to read was not included, naturally - Chef Todd English's "chocolate hash browns." Say what?)

The book concludes with the actual last suppers of several deceased celebrities, based on eyewitness accounts, etc. Of course, most of these people didn't actually choose their last suppers; it just sort of unfortunately happened that way. The exception would be Ernest Hemingway, who apparently calmly dined on his usual choices at his favorite restaurant before shooting himself the next morning: New York strip steak, baked potato, Caesar salad and Bordeaux wine.

Marilyn Monroe's final meal was reportedly at a Brentwood restaurant where she ate guacamole, stuffed mushrooms, spicy meatballs and washed it down with Dom Perignon champagne. Yeah. I could go for that, I think.

Overall, this is a good read; the reader is introduced to true comfort food stories. I mean, your choice of a last supper menu should be foods that you absolutely love and want to share with loved ones (or a freaky and surreal "celebrities in heaven" guest list) as the last meal you will ever enjoy. Even if that last meal is oatmeal.

"Last Suppers - If the World Ended Tomorrow, What Would Be Your Last Meal?" by James L. Dickerson; 1999 Lebhar-Friedman Books, New York.


Beth said...

Sounds interesting! I may have to check that one out one of these days.

Doris Sturm said...

Wow, that is thought provoking and then I'm thinking: Why wait? I may have a fine meal while I'm still alive all by myself - and not wait for something drastic or fancy occasion, right?
I was thinking crabmeat, big ole scallops, avocado, vine ripe tomatoes and lots and lots of sauteed mushrooms in butter and the meal had to have fresh rasperries, whipped cream and ice cream... oh, and I never tasted truffels...I wonder what they are like?

Lonesome Road Studio said...

I would definitely have to have peaches, too, I think.

twiddletoes said...

Interesting! I'll have to keep an eye out for that.

I try to eat like it's my last meal every night. Makes it tough to stick within the budget, though! :)

Lonesome Road Studio said...

Or the diet, hehe.

Wicked Thrifty said...

haha, kind of creepy but cool. i like that kind of thing, too. i am totally with you on the oatmeal thing- only if i was undergoing that as a form torture, it seems to me...

Patrick said...

Very cool - a group of my friends is doing a 'Last Meal' dinner party series - where each of us will host the group for what our own last meal would be.

Lonesome Road Studio said...

What a great idea Patrick!! I'd love to see some of the menus.


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