Archive for the ‘Media’ Category

The Muppet Show – How Swedish Chef Makes Donuts

Friday, April 30th, 2010

It is somewhat of an odd obsession, being the Fried Dough Ho, to find humorous doughnut bits now being forwarded to me from friends and readers. And it is my sincerest plan to ultimately share each and every one over time. I’ll admit to having been a Muppet Show fan in my youth. I liked the crazy old guys in the balcony, Statler and Waldorf. I had a Rowlf The Dog hand-puppet. And everybody liked Kermit.

And then there is Swedish Chef. For those who don’t know, he was designed by the Muppet factory as a parody of televisions chefs (long before there were celebrity chefs). Much of the humor lies in the fact that his vision is almost completely obscured by his bushy eyebrows and toque blanche. Unlike most other Muppets, you can actually see human hands protruding from the character’s costume. How else to handle actual cooking implements?

The other hilarious part for me is Chef’s song, which he sings at the beginning of each episode. Mostly incomprehensible, Swedish-sounding gibberish, the song is never quite the same but always finishes out with the barks of “Börk, börk, börk!” before the Chef flings the utensils aside and starting in on his culinary endeavor. I hope you enjoy today’s offering!

30 Rock – Tina Fey comments on her favorite donut shop

Tuesday, April 27th, 2010

I don’t watch a lot of regular television. I admit that I tend to just watch classic movies over and over, but some close friends recommended 30 Rock to me. I know that creator Tina Fey puts a lot of her own personal interests into the nuances of the show (like continual references to Star Wars) so it made sense that her character’s love of food would include doughnuts.

Apparently they are from a Brooklyn bakery known as Peter Pan and she describes them as “powdered sugar on the outside, white cream-filled donut (not to be confused with Bavarian cream).” It seems the cream filling is “very, very white” and “if made correctly, makes you blind.” Sounds like I need to hit up a special spot in Brooklyn when next I visit New York!

Doughnuts in Art, Part III – Emily Eveleth

Saturday, April 24th, 2010

I would like to introduce you to Emily Eveleth. Well, truth-be-told, *I* would like to be introduced to Emily Eveleth but the least I can do is introduce you to Ms. Evelth’s amazing artwork. I first saw her work on the cover of Gastronomica in the Winter of 2003 but I will readily admit that it did not have that much of an impact on me then. Yes, it was a very pretty image of a jelly doughnut and one could easily think it was a photograph. That picture, by the way, is entitled Nigh and was painted in 1998.

It was several years later when I attended Art Basel in Miami Beach, Florida in December of 2007 and I saw it (or another from that series) in person that the full effect hit me. Her paintings are HUGE. The one I saw in person was more than 8′ square. And while she paints other things, she has become quite famous for her jelly doughnuts, which she has been painting for over twenty years.

These doughnuts are sensual; oozing vibrantly seductive jelly which seemingly begs to be touched and licked. These are sexual doughnuts with their gaping maws, opening to reveal the moist inner secrets of desire. Her paintings are hyper-realistic in their size, but a form of food porn that exudes sexual innuendo.

Burl Ives – The Donut Song

Tuesday, April 20th, 2010

No, we are not celebrating Christmas yet. This is yet another mostly-obscure media reference which I wanted to share from American actor, writer, and folk musician Burl Ives.

I grew up listening to Burl Ives sing The Big Rock Candy Mountain on one of my 38 rpm records. From my childhood, I knew he was the narrator voice of Sam the Snowman in the classic Christmas classic television show Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer.  And when I embraced classic movies, saw Oscar® winner-Ives in his larger-than-life portrayal of Rufus Hannassey in The Big Country, Big Daddy in Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, and as the implacable Dr. Hasselbacher in one of my absolute favorite movies, Our Man In Havana.

As the banjo-playing folk musician, he penned dozens of folksy, down-home tunes and I stumbled on a feel-good ditty which inspired one to look at the big picture through doughnut philosophy:

When you walk the streets you’ll have no cares
If you walk the lines and not the squares
As you go through life make this your goal
Watch the donut, not the hole.

It’s written on the rainbow, in letters made of gold
Written on the rainbow, there’s wisdom to behold
My friend the little sparrow flew
Close enough to see
Written on a rainbow is this philosophy.

I’m off to jolly England where
Bulldogs all wear pants
Off to Pago Pago where alligators dance
My friend the little sparrow will
Take me where he flies
Even to the rainbow to read with my own eyes

Twin Peaks; the Ultimate Doughnut-Friendly Television Show?

Thursday, April 1st, 2010

From time to time, it is my plan to share special video clips from movies and television which showcase my favorite indulgence. You will be surprised how many there are! But the inaugural post is a special one, coming from one of my favorite television shows of all time, Twin Peaks. A bit vintage now, I realize, but it was so full of odd food fodder, not the least of which were donuts. Enjoy!