By Richard Peterson
I never cared much for Elvis Presley. But since his death I’ve become more tolerant of him because he was a world class glutton. That tolerance has blossomed into admiration as I learn more and more about Elvis’s ability to pack away food.
Here’s some interesting information from a column by David Grimes, which appeared in the Sarasota (Fla.) Herald-Tribune 10 years ago:
I know, I know.
Like you, I thought that the life and times of Elvis Presley had been poked and prodded from every conceivable (and inconceivable) angle and that if one more jot of nonsense was added to the reeking, groaning tonnage of previously published material, the earth would fall out of orbit and plunge into the sun.
Sadly, such is not the case.
As evidence, I have before me a copy — oh, all right, a review of a copy of a book titled, "The Life and Cuisine of Elvis Presley," a so-called "food biography" written by David Adler.
I don’t know, call me old-fashioned, but if you want to write about a man’s drug addictions, emotional problems or sexual dysfunctions, that’s fine, but don’t go snooping around in his refrigerator. How can a man — even a dead one retain a shred of dignity when the world knows that his $500 weekly grocery bill included a case of orange soda, a side of bacon and three kinds of nose spray?
So the guy liked to eat. What’s the big deal?
True, Elvis was not your average, run-of-the-mill fat slob. He took gluttony seriously. No standing over the sink shoveling cold lasagna into your face for The King. When he decided to let out the jumpsuit a couple notches he did it right. Grab a couple of pals. Hop onto his private jet and fly from Graceland to Glendale, Colo. for a sumptuous feast of Fool’s Gold Loaf.
For you espresso sippers who are unfamiliar with Fool’s Gold Loaf, here’s the recipe:
One loaf of Italian white bread
One pound of lean bacon, fried & drained Peanut butter Jelly Smear loaf with butter and bake in a 350 degree oven for 15 minutes.
Remove loaf and slice lengthwise. Hollow out the insides of each half, smear peanut butter and jelly inside, add the bacon and slap the two halves together.
According to the book, this would feed Elvis or 8 to 10 others.
Call me a sentimental fool, but it’s hard not to be touched by a guy with enough money to buy his weight in caviar, who, when he goes out to eat, orders a box of Krispy Kreme jelly donuts.
Which is not to say that some of Elvis’s tastes weren’t a bit odd.
For example, his favorite dessert was Del Monte fruit cocktail with coconut flakes, raisins and mini-marshmallows.
Anybody who ruins a perfectly good can of fruit cocktail by sprinkling it with coconut flakes deserves to be impersonated in motel lounges from now to eternity.
Elvis also liked his meat cooked well-done. ("That’s burnt, man," was high praise.) Anybody who orders his steak on the gray side of medium rare deserves to be abducted by aliens and pop into obscure hardware stores from now to eternity.
Elvis’s favorite pizza topping was said to be barbecued pork with barbecue sauce instead of tomato sauce. I’m going to give The King the benefit of the doubt on this one, since I’ve never had pizza that way.
Then again, I’ve never snorked down an entire box of Eskimo Pies in one sitting, either, so I’m probably not one to judge.
After reading Grimes’s column, I got a fierce hankering for one of those Fool’s Gold things. I didn’t have a loaf of Italian bread, so instead I pigged out on a snack of Hi-Ho crackers with limburger cheese and horseradish.
We have virtually no mosquitoes in Minnewaukan. At least there aren’t any in my yard. I think the scarcity of the pests is related to those bugs which hatch every few weeks. Come to think of it, we haven’t had many of those hatches either. It’s just wonderful not having mosquitoes.
* I used to eat a lot of natural foods until I learned that most people die of natural causes.
* Gardening Rule: When weeding, the best way to make sure you are removing a weed and not a valuable plant is to pull on it. If it comes out of the ground easily, it is a valuable plant.
* The easiest way to find something lost around the house is to buy a replacement.
* Did you ever notice that when you blow in a dog’s face he gets mad at you, but when you take him on a car ride, he sticks his head out the window to catch the breeze?