Sunday, September 27, 2009

Groucho Marx's Matzo Balls


"From the moment I picked your book up until I laid it down,
I was convulsed with laughter. Someday I intend reading it."

My meeting on Thursday was fabulous. I am inspired, enthused and excited about the nebulous entity that will be the book AFTER Silver Screen Suppers. Better get on with this one first though I guess. As Groucho says, "Time flies like an arrow, fruit flies like a banana."

I am loving the surreal banter that I am having with test cooks all over the world via the medium of the email. Katharine in Cardiff is now my official advisor on all things Matzo related. She has cleared up my confusion as to the exact definition of a "Tea Matzo". She also tipped me off to the fact that Matzos with butter, apricot jam and little morsels of cheese dotted on top are utterly divine.

When making Matzo Ball Soup you could of course buy some "kneidlach" (Matzo ball mix) but where's the fun in that?! Ms H. said that it was the first time she had made Matzo balls that weren't out of a packet and they turned out "a million times better". Although alarmed at the amount of chicken fat in the recipe, she later came to the conclusion tht this may be the secret of their success. After popping up to the top of the chicken broth and bobbing around for 15 minutes or so they emerge, "very soft and light and fluffy and tasty".

Katharine also let me know some delicious nuggets of information about Marilyn Monroe. Apparently when she was married to Arhur Miller she once helped her mother-in-law prepare chicken soup and matzo balls. For a while Marilyn embraced domesticity and learned to make pasta. She draped sheets of it over the back of chairs and dried it with a hairdryer. Superb! But where are Marilyn's favourite recipes. In our collection of over 3500 we don't have a single one. The call is out!

6 comments:

Molly said...

I need to know anything anyone can tell me about Groucho Marx' taste in food, favorite recipes, food featured in films ... you get the idea!

Lya de Putti said...

Hi Molly - everything I know is here I'm afraid.... I wish I knew more but I'm generally more interested in the ladies of the silver screen than the gents!

Molly said...

Thanks. What is your original source for knowing about Groucho and Matzoh ball soup? I cannot divine it from Silver Screen site. Many thanks.

Lya de Putti said...

It's from a cookbook that my co-writer has in Texas. I believe it is called the League Cookbook and was published some time during the 1930s. Is your blog a Groucho related blog? Your profile seems to be blocked so I can't check it out...

Anonymous said...

She was married to Arthur Miller, not Henry Miller. Easy to confuse the two names I know.

Anyway, the only MM recipe I know of is she stated in a magazine article she would heat up a glass of milk on a hot plate, break two raw eggs into it, whip it up with a fork and eat it for breakfast. Probably not exactly the type of recipe you're looking for though.

-Rebecca

Lya de Putti said...

Gawd - thanks for pointing out that schoolgirl error Rebecca! What a klutz... LOVE the anecdote about Marilyn's breakfast dish. I GUESS that I'll try it - just for research purposes - but it sounds atrocious!