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Guacamole Bracket: The Old Dark House

(Collage artwork by Cherie Savoie Tintary)

There are ton of sporting events these days. On February 13th, 2022 Los Angeles hosted hosting the Super Bowl. The Olympics are in full swing and basketball season is still going on too. Even if you don't watch sports (like me), watching TCM still provides the perfect opportunity to watch TV and eat a lot of guacamole. My friend Annette suggested doing a classic star guacamole bracket. It sounded like fun! Instead of sports teams, several different stars from Hollywood's Golden Age will battle for the top spot.

There are several ladies out there who have been making movie star recipes and writing about them for a long time. I've been inspired by their work and I was so happy that we could finally join forces.

The Team

Jenny Hammerton is a film archivist in London and has been blogging and cooking movie star recipes for over 15 years at She is the author of "Cooking With Joan Crawford", "Cooking With Columbo" and co-author of "Supper with the Stars."

Samantha Ellis writes the column "Cooking with the Stars" for the Classic Movie Hub. She blogs at Musings of a Classic Film Addict and co-hosts the podcast "Ticklish Business".

Fritzi Kramer writes extensively about silent film cooks the recipes from the Photoplay Cook Book of 1929 for her blog "Movies Silently".

*Given our schedule and time zone differences, this bracket will play out over zoom, social media and this blog.

The Bracket

Samantha Ellis devised the game plan for the team.

The Old Dark Bracket

Boris Karloff and Gloria Stuart co-starred in the 1932 horror classic "The Old Dark House" directed by James Whale. They both have guacamole recipes, so we will see which one wins the first round. (By the way, The Cohen Media Group did a stunning 4K restoration of "The Old Dark House".)

In case you aren't familiar with her, Gloria Stuart was also in "The Invisible Man" (1933), "Gold Diggers of 1935" and she earned an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress for her role as the elder "Rose" in the 1997 blockbuster "Titanic".

The Recipes

I found this recipe online and I heard from a friend that it came directly from Forrest J. Ackerman's scrapbook.

This recipe is from the book "Famous Stars Favorite Foods" edited by Fannie Sniff and published in 1938.

The Final Result

You've got to love how Gloria Stuart wants "dead ripe" avocados! Fritzi suggested that we get blue corn chips, as they would look more "dead" too. Of course, I was totally on board with the idea. Besides I'll take ANY excuse to whip out my coffin chips & salsa serving platter!

Below is Jenny's photo of the two guacamoles for side by side comparison.

We all agreed that the Gloria Stuart guacamole (on the left) was oily and way too strong on the onion. We all felt that the Boris Karloff guacamole (on the right) was chunky, flavorful and the use of Sherry actually works as an added bonus.

For ROUND 1 the winner is Karloff by unanimous decision.

I've posted about Boris Karloff films in the past, so here are some Gloria Stuart films to check out on DVD, Blu-ray, streaming or Turner Classic Movies.

I had a fantastic time chatting with these ladies and we are coming up with more guacamole brackets and many more joint episode ideas in the future. Stay tuned!


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