Ahhhh, sweet victory after two debacles in the kitchen d’etting. Saturday dawned in a rather ominous fashion – well, mainly as I knew that I simply couldn’t put off La Gaynor anymore. I felt her looking at me constantly. From every direction. In fact, showed a clip to les students this week and practically screamed when her sweet visage looked right back at me saying, “I know that this recipe is made of “american” cheese, but don’t give up on me…”

Let us begin by saying that for Janet, “fondue” really means more of a souffle. or something. After a quick call to the grandmere (who is now officially going to be called before any attempt at a recipe out of the Photoplay book with its vague and “of course you know what i mean when i say ‘warm’ oven temperature”), I popped open a cold bottle of pinot grigio brought over by the nutty professor, and began unrwapping my sheets of kraft american cheese. The recipe did demand that it be shredded, but clearly american cheese in the 1930s was made of heartier stock than now. I attempted to chop it and ended up with a mound of clumpy, sticky, nay, rubbery velveeta. Only made more hilarious by the nutty professor constantly sneaking up and grabbing mouthfuls and muttering – “don’t laugh”. He claims to have grown up not knowing that there was any other kind of cheese until he discovered brie at age 25. I believe him.

Well, the results were not unedible (a step forward, no offense to the divine Anna May Wong) but nothing to dream about long term. Fluffy, light as air, and that peculiarly unique orange color that velveeta brings… I fell asleep dreaming about the future sss cooking show that would feature lya de putti making this dish, then ruth etting pulling out a can of cheese whiz in a confident manner demonstrating that modern conveniences can short cut just about anything.

Thus reinvigorated, I plan to attack Shirley’s pecan bars again this week. Huzzah!!

Monthly movie star menus direct to your inbox

You have Successfully Subscribed!