It’s Monday morning and time for a little flight of fantasy baking. I’ve often thought of the many people I would like to bake for; some of these, like Nigella Lawson from last week’s post, would not be an impossible dream.
This week’s subject is a little less possible but a dream nonetheless. I would love to bake a cake for Groucho Marx.
Groucho Marx was a huge presence in my childhood. His wise cracks, over-sized suits, and cigars so frequented my living room that he may as well have been a blood relative.*
*This may sound like an over-exaggeration but my immediate family will acknowledge it!
I have always said that my love of old movies – inherited from my Father – shaped my image from a very young age. Looking up to those stars of Hollywood’s Golden Age with their immaculate hourglass figures, seamed stockings, and set hair had a huge impact. That’s why I dress in the way that I do. What Groucho and The Marx Brothers gave me was my sense of humour and this is as big a part of me as my wardrobe. I’m surreal at times, often inappropriate and laden with innuendo, the only thing lacking on me is the greasepaint moustache but I was not built to play it straight.
If you have never seen a Marx Brothers movie, take a moment to watch this routine. You don’t need to know too much of the plot so far, suffice it to say that Groucho has an intruder (or two) and this really shows you the family resemblance between the brothers!
I’d make Groucho a Red Velvet Cake as I think that he would recognise and enjoy it. The legend of Red Velvet (that I have heard) has it as being a very popular cake in New York in the 1920s so I can imagine that Groucho would have scored a slice at some point in his youth. I guess we would also need a good pot of coffee and he could just crack me up with those famous one-liners all afternoon.
These movies may be old but the anarchic comedy echoes through the ages – Woody Allen is probably Groucho’s most famous fan and if you love his films (especially the madcap comedies like Sleeper) you will love The Marx Brothers. I am taking a lazy day today to recover from a wonderful weekend at Foodies Festival on Blackheath Common so I may treat myself to a little giggle in black and white.
So to brighten up your Monday morning still further, let’s end with a song…