Next week marks the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the ill-fated RMS Titanic in the North Atlantic. This week marks the re-release of the ill-fated 1997 film Titanic in 3D. Hopefully this article will be a lot shorter than the movie. If I date one more girl who wants to see the movie Titanic, I will politely excuse myself, exit the room, find a thick rope and hang myself from the nearest yardarm. What? I’m just saying out loud what a lot of guys have kept to themselves all these years.
The original Titanic sinking resulted in the death of 1,514 people, only 710 survived. The original movie Titanic caused the deaths of countless boyfriends and husbands who were dragged to the theater to see it. This figure does not include casualties brought on by the release of the DVD. The number could be in the millions. Pass the box of Kleenex please.
So the great liner continues her legacy to this day. On the anniversary of this great tragedy, many chefs, both professional and amateur, recreate the last menu of the RMS Titanic’s first and final voyage.
There were three classes of passengers on board the ship and three different menus offered on April 14, 1912 to the doomed passengers.
Third class passengers such as Jack Dawson or his buddy Fabrizio were treated to what was known in the day as “High Tea”, which is different than “Afternoon Tea”, Green Tea” or say, T-Shirts. The menu probably consisted of Irish stew, stewed apricots, bread and featured entertainment by goofy cartoon character, Stewie Griffin of the “Family Guy” TV series.
The second-class dinner menu was a little more upscale. Baked haddock, curried chicken, spring lamb and roast turkey were the entrees. Ice cream, fresh fruit or plum pudding were among the desserts. Passengers is second-class like Molly Brown and her posse did not go hungry.
First class passengers such as John Jacob Astor or Benjamin Guggenheim feasted on a 10-course extravaganza. Oysters, chicken Lyonnais, roast duckling or sirloin of beef with chateau potatoes. Pate de fois gras, roasted squab and waldorf pudding also were featured. But three of the items on the menu caught my eye because in all honesty, I had never heard of them.
Consommé Olga, I assumed was some sort of soup. Soup indeed it is, but a peculiar soup, one I imagine died with the Titanic.
1 Lb. Beets, Peeled and Diced
½ Cup Onions, Sliced
4 ½ Cups Water
¼ Cup Fresh Thyme, Chopped
2 Tbs. Lime Juice
1 Tsp. Salt
1 Tsp. Sugar
1 Cup Sour Cream
Throw the beets, onions and water in a large stockpot. Bring to a boil then simmer covered, for 15-20 minutes, until beets are tender. Let cool and strain into a large bowl. Reserve the beet broth.
Pour the beets and onions in batches into a food processor and puree until smooth. Return puree to broth and add rest of ingredients except sour cream. Bring to a boil and cut the heat off. Pour soup into bowls and add a dollop of sour cream.
We all know the legend of the Filet Mignon, the most prized cut of beef, but the kitchen on the Titanic served Filet Mignon Lili. A little research showed me that this recipe could be a keeper. Normally I like my Filet wrapped in bacon, char-grilled medium rare and nothing else. Try this one out for a new take on Filet Mignon.
Filet Mignon Lili
1 Tbs. Butter
1 Tbs. Olive Oil
1 Garlic Clove, Peeled and Sliced Thin
4 8)z. Filet Mignons
Salt/Freshly Ground Black Pepper
½ Cup Cabernet Wine
4 Artichoke Hearts, Cooked and Quartered
Heat butter and olive oil in a cast-iron pan. Add garlic and sauté for 1 minute. Season Filets with salt and pepper and add to the pan. Brown each side and cook until medium rare. Add wine, deglaze the pan, and add artichoke hearts, cooking for another 2 minutes until warmed through.
Finally, something on the first class menu called “Punch Romaine”. As an experienced drinker with a lot of experience, I have never come across this one. I’m a sucker for a good punch and this one almost has a Sangria quality to it.
6 Cups Ice
1 Cup Sugar
2 Cups Champagne
1 Cup Chardonnay
¼ Cup Freshly Squeezed Orange Juice
2 Tbs. Freshly Squeezed Lemon Juice
2 Tbs. Rum
Orange Slices and White and Red Grapes
Place all ingredients except rum, orange and grapes in a blender and blend until combined.
Pour into champagne flutes, drizzle with a little rum and garnish with orange slices and grapes.
Today the mystique of the ocean cruise aboard a luxury liner is still part of our vision for an exotic vacation escape.
Ships host thousands and have become a floating Las Vegas of the high seas. And nothing could be safer. Today’s cruise ships are outfitted with the latest maritime technology and not only do they carry enough lifeboats for every passenger, they also carry an ample supply of food-borne illness and Legionnaire’s Disease.
Please don’t make me see this movie again.