Sunday, February 26, 2012

A Cookbook Tribute to the Oscars

If you are visiting today in search of Pistachios, you've come to the right place, sorta kinda. It seems, since I celebrated World Pistachio Day last year with this fabulous Pistachio Cake... (click the cake for the recipe)

Pistachio Cake
...It's the perfect opportunity for me to share a few of my "star" quality cookbooks with you today, just in time for the Oscars tonight!

Bob & Bill

In February of 2011, fellow Long Islander, Billy Crystal returned to host the Oscars for the eighth time. Tonight he returns again. However, before there was a Billy Crystal, there was Bob Hope.
In Billy's Own Words:
The first televised Oscars was in 1953. I was five years old so for those of you who stink in math I'm 47. The host that year was Bob Hope. He hosted it 18 times, I hosted it eight and I was popped after two. Bob was the Oscars. He was funny, he was classy and he was what I think the Oscar host must be: a sexy movie star." (Movietone Blog)
As Billy mentioned, "Bob Hope was the Oscars" and a pretty amazing humanitarian too! "Bob Hope has more than two thousand awards and citations for humanitarian and professional efforts, including 54 honorary doctorates." He's been cited by the Guinness Book of Records as the most honored entertainer in the world. He also authored 13 books, seven were bestsellers!
This post could go on and on about both Bob Hope and Billy Crystal but, if we want to get down to some real fixins', perhaps we should see how these two fare in the kitchen. With the schedule Bob Hope exampled, I'm sure he had little time for the kitchen. He did however have a hankering for a good ol' lemon pie especially when it was baked the way his mother use to make it. According to the Bob Hope Recipe Page, "Mahm's" Lemon Pie recipe "has been printed in nearly every newspaper in every town Bob has performed in and in at least a hundred "celebrity" cook books." Here's the recipe I harvested from The National Enquirer Celebrity Cookbook published in newspaper format in 1991.
National Enquirer Celebrity Cookbook

Bob Hope's Lemon Pie
In an interview with People Magazine, Billy Crystal reveals his fondness for potatoes, Italian cooking, and the the television shows The Galloping Gourmet and The French Chef hosted by Julia Child.
"When a woman can drool and heavy breathe at the same time while talking about giblets, you have to go for her."~Billy Crystal
In the interview, he takes a somewhat "relaxed" approach to providing a recipe:) His most cherished recipe is for tension:

Billy Crystal's Down-Home Recipe for the Up-Tight
1 threatening legal letter
1 nuclear plant being built near your new home
5 incredibly bad reviews (If not in show business, substitute a severe oil slick on your favorite beach)
1 tax audit
½ day waiting in line for gas, only to be told once you get to the pump that it's an even day and you're odd
1 letter from your mother that confirms all the reviewers' thoughts

1. Make sure the threatening letter arrives the same day as the tax audit and the bad reviews
2. Read Mom's letter over and over
3. Convince yourself you'll never work again
4. Try to get gasoline
5. Read reviews while waiting on line
6. Let it all stew for six to eight hours
7. Go out and get something to eat and forget the whole thing
The 5th Academy Awards program was Held at the Fiesta Room of the Ambassador Hotel on Friday, November 18, 1932, During that presentation, Walt Disney received a special award for the creation of Mickey Mouse. Mickey has since become amongst many things, a Gourmet. Here's Mickey and a few of the appetizing recipes from Cooking With Mickey Volume II
Jamacian Hot Wings | Captain's Hideaway | Cooking With Mickey Volumn II

Gone With The Wind

At the 12th Academy Awards presentation in 1940, Bob Hope was the host when Gone With the Wind won eight Academy Awards. Gone With The Wind was also the first movie filmed in color to win Best Picture. Since I have previously posted a few recipes from The Gone With The Wind Cookbook here, I will simply share with you this epic picture from the back of the book.
Muppets creator Jim Henson made his only on-camera Oscar appearance when he presented Animated Short Film at the 58th Academy Awards. (1986) Here's a page from Jim Henson's Muppet Picnic Cookbook published in 1981 by Hallmark Cards.

Muppet Picnic Cookbook 1981 Hallmark Cards

The classic Muppet characters that debuted on The Muppet Show in 1976 have starred in eight full-length features; they are now owned and controlled by The Walt Disney Company and continue to appear in television, theme park and online productions.  Two Muppet films, “The Muppet Movie” and “The Great Muppet Caper,” received Academy Award nominations in music categories...

On that same night, an honorary award was presented to Paul Newman "in recognition of his many and memorable compelling screen performances and for his personal integrity and dedication to his craft." Grab a bowl of Paul's Picture Show Popcorn Crunch while you're watching the show tonight! I also just had to include Oscar winner Julia's Robert's recipe for Fresh Peach Crisp too:)
Newman's Own Cookbook
Julia Roberts won the Best Actress Academy Award during the 73rd Academy Awards for her role in Erin Brockovich and earned Oscar nominations as Best Supporting Actress for Steel Magnolias in 1989 and Best Actress for Pretty Woman in 1990. Julia Roberts will play the evil Queen in the upcoming adaptation of “Snow White; Mirror Mirror."
To close today's presentation, I would like to share a decadent chocolate recipe from Forrest Gump's Chocolate Recipes. Tom Hanks took home the Oscar for his portrayal of Forrest Gump at the The 67th Academy Awards in 1995.
Chocolate Decadence | Forest Gump's Chocolate Recipes
The only movie I've seen from the Academy Awards lineup is The Help. I really enjoyed it. For those of you who have seen it, you'll appreciate Janet's post for Minny's Chocolate Pie:) (Even if you haven't seen the movie you should check this out:)
The Oscar presentations will be televised live in more than 200 countries worldwide. Enjoy!

1. Academy Awards Trivia
2. Menu and program from the 1st Academy Awards
3. World Golf Hall of Fame Profile: Bob Hope
4. Celebrity Chefs article from People Magazine. (1979)
5. Newman's Own Recipes (previous post)
6. Cooking With the Stars (previous post)
7. Remembering Star Wars (previous post)