Monday, October 22, 2007

"Rodney Dangerfield's 'I Couldn't Stand My Wife's Cooking, So I Opened a Restaurant'" & "Morey Amsterdam's Benny Cooker Crock Book for Drinkers"

Date I made these recipes: October 21, 2007

Rodney Dangerfield’s “I Couldn’t Stand My Wife’s Cooking, So I Opened a Restaurant!!” – Respectable Recipes Spiced with Humor by Rodney Dangerfield
© 1972
Published by: Jonathan David Publishers
Recipe: Whiskey Wafers – p. 171

Morey Amsterdam’s Benny Cooker Crock Book for Drinkers by Morey Amsterdam
© 1977
Published by: Henry Regnery Company
Recipe: Chicken au Grand Mariner – p. 53-54

Well who knew that out of 800 or so cookbooks, two of them would be written by comedians. Everybody wants to get in the cooking act!

Depending on how old you are, you will either know Rodney Dangerfield from seeing him on the Tonight Show with Johnny Carson delivering his famous line “I don’t get no respect” or you know him from movies such as Caddyshack or Back to School, both favorite movies of the younger set in the 80’s. At one point, Rodney really did open up a restaurant/comedy club although who knows if it was really because he couldn’t stand his wife’s cooking.

And then there’s Morey Amsterdam. Fans of the Dick Van Dyke Show will know him as the hilariously funny Buddy Sorrell. When he, Dick and Sally (played by Rose Marie) got going that show really cooked with Crisco! Some might remember Morey and Rose Marie appearing on Hollywood Squares together after the Dick Van Dyke show ended in 1966 where they were just as funny as when they were on a TV sitcom.

Oddly enough, both recipes selected contained alcohol. While every recipe in Morey’s book contained alcohol, not all of Rodney’s did but it was just by chance that I decided to make the incredibly delicious Whiskey Wafers. Okay, maybe the booze is what attracted me to the recipe in the first place…but still…. Both books also contained a ton of jokes and it would be remiss of me not to include a couple from the masters of comedy. Don’t groan—some of them are somewhat dated – but they’re a nice compliment to the recipes, which were mighty tasty if I do say so myself…hic! (Kidding!)

From Morey’s book: “Judge: I hope you understand that you are here for drinking. Defendant: Okay, Judge. Get the bottle and let’s get started.” (I’m an attorney and I can assure you that somebody somewhere has probably said the exact thing to a judge. Don’t get me started….)

From Morey’s book: “Doctor: I can’t find anything wrong with you, Mr. Jones. It must be due to drinking. Boozer: Okay, Doc, I’ll come back when you’re sober.”

From Rodney’s book: “I’ll tell you again, I don’t like fancy restaurants! The other day I tried a new restaurant. It looked kind of homey. It was called: YEE OLDE COFFEE SHOPPEE. I said to the waitress, “Do you know what I WANTEE?”

From Rodney’s book: “I’ve always been unlucky in any kind of restaurant. I remember one night I had dinner in a restaurant and some guy stole my wallet. I came home and told my wife. I said to her, “I was in a restaurant and some guy stole my wallet. I’m depressed!” She said, “That makes two of you. You and the guy who found it!”

Whiskey Wafers - makes about a dozen wafers
1/2 cup molasses (unsulfured)
½ cup butter
1 ½ cups cake flour
Dash of salt
2/3 cup sugar
1 tablespoon ginger
½ jigger whiskey

Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Stir butter into heated molasses (boiling point) and mix until butter is melted. Combine flour, salt, sugar and ginger and add gradually. Add whiskey and mix thoroughly. Spoon out small amounts onto greased cookie sheet, allowing 3 inches between each. Bake about 10 minutes.

Notes: these ended up being more like a candy than a cookie. Also, when they say allow 3 inches between each one, they mean it! I didn’t leave enough space and ended up with one great big wafer at the end.

Chicken au Grand Marnier – Serves 4
1 disjointed frying chicken 2 ½ to 3 pounds
½ cup orange sections
½ cup Grand Marnier
6 tablespoons brown sugar
1 ½ cup large sliced frozen peaches
2 tablespoons vinegar
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon basil
1 clove chopped garlic
½ cup flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
½ tablespoon vegetable shortening

Combine in a saucepan orange sections, Grand Mariner, sugar, peaches, vinegar, nutmeg, basil and garlic. Cook slowly about 10 minutes.

Meanwhile roll chicken in flour seasoned with salt and pepper, and brown in vegetable shortening in a heavy skillet. Remove chicken from skillet. Pour off the shortening retaining the residue in the bottom.

Return chicken to the skillet and add contents of saucepan. Cover and simmer about 25 minutes.

1 comment:

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