Joan's grandson Casey LaLonde joined me for this very special episode of Hollywood Kitchen.
Joan Crawford is one of my favorite stars and doing one of her recipes has been on my list for a while. I was thrilled to get her grandson Casey LaLonde and my friend Jack Fields to join me and help make two of her recipes!
The first recipe is from "Cooking with Joan Crawford" by Jenny Hammerton of Silver Screen Suppers. It also appeared in Joan Crawford's 1971 book "My Way of Life". Joan's grandson Casey LaLonde holds the publishing rights and the book was put back into print in 2017. It is fabulous and Joan offers up advice on make up, fashion, cooking, hosting parties and being a woman in a man's world. It is a MUST read and fortunately my most favorite bookstore Larry Edmunds has plenty of copies for a mere $12.99.
Peanut Butter and Bacon Toasts
Cut little circles from very thin white bread with a cookie cutter, toast them, butter them, spread over some peanut butter and stick them under the broiler (grill) until they're piping hot. Sprinkle crips, crumbled bacon over the top.
Joan Crawford's Meat Loaf
This recipe is from "Cookbook of the Stars" (1970) and also appears in "My Way of Life" and "Cooking with Joan Crawford".
2 lbs. ground sirloin
1 lbs. Jones bulk pork sausage
1 lg. Bermuda onion, finely chopped
3 Tbs. Lawry's Seasoned Salt
3 Tsp. A-1 Steak Sauce
3 raw eggs
3 raw green bell peppers, finely chopped
3 Tbs. Lea & Perrin's Worcestershire Sauce
4 hard boiled eggs, whole
1 cup water
Combine meats, unbeaten eggs, onion, peppers, 1 Tbs. Lawry's Seasoned Salt, 1 Tbs. Lea & Perrin's Worcestershire Sauce and 1 tsp. A-1 Steak Sauce. Mix thoroughly. Shape mixture into oval loaf form in large shallow baking pan. Gently press hard boiled eggs into the loaf.
Sprinkle remaining Lawry's Seasoned Salt, Worcestershire and Steak Sauce on top of loaf, as a crust. Pour 1 cup water in the base of the roasting pan. Do not pour over the meat loaf after you have put the sauces on.
Bake in pre-heated oven at 350 degrees for 30 min. Turn over down to 300 degrees and bake for another 30 min. Turn oven down to 250 degrees and bake for 45 minutes to one hour, basking frequently with pan juice. (10 portions.)
*I have some thoughts on this! I consulted Samantha Ellis of Classic Movie Hub. She writes a "Cooking with the Stars" column and has made this recipe. I read her blog and we chatted on email as well. Since the pandemic is still going on, I can't invite friends over to help me the food and things don't tend to fare very well in my freezer. I whittled this recipe down to serve two people instead of ten. I nixed the veal as well. Samantha warned me that the hardboiled egg in the meat loaf would be tricky. She suggested that I make sure the eggs were very soft boiled so that the oven would take care of cooking them. I decided not to add the egg until the very end. I also reduced the cooking time to only one hour since I was making a much smaller portion. Samantha also suggested covering it in tomato sauce and she was right! I would even suggest adding pressed garlic as well. The meat loaf turned out well, but I think the peanut butter and bacon toast has emerged as the big winner. Several friends commented that they would love to try it and that it would be great to serve at a party in the future.
Casey LaLonde is Joan Crawford's grandson and has dedicated his life to restoring his grandmother's reputation as a person and classic Hollywood icon. Through The Joan Crawford Home Movie Collection and republishing his grandmother's long out-of-print autobiographies A Portrait of Joan and My Way of Life, Casey brings a new level of understanding of Joan Crawford's life and career to fans around the world.
Jack Fields has been a contributing writer and researcher for Turner Classic Movies since 2016. He has appeared as a film critic on NPR and GoldDerby.com. Jack serves as a programmer for the Plaza Classic Film Festival in El Paso, TX.
The Final Product
This was a delightful episode and I am thrilled that Casey LaLonde was able to join the fun! He is kind, gracious and I think Joan would be beaming with pride!
P.S.- As you will see in the video, we drank a toast with Pepsi (naturally) in honor of Joan's birthday on March 23rd.