In "Hands Across The Table," Carole Lombard's character, manicurist Regi Allen, is shown at an upscale restaurant with purportedly wealthy Theodore Drew (Fred MacMurray). While the real-life Carole enjoyed a night out on the town, having meals where the elite meet to eat, she was often content being at home, preparing something for herself or for guests.
Truth is, Lombard fancied herself as not only a fine hostess, but a pretty darn good cook as well. The other day, we noted that Carole participated in a charity cookbook called "Fashions In Foods In Beverly Hills," and even autographed some copies (http://carole-and-co.livejournal.com/467636.html).
When I wrote it, I didn't know what recipe Lombard had included, but thankfully LiveJournal's sunnylimoncello came to the rescue. It turns out that sunny, who like me lives in Virginia, has a copy of the 1930 edition and replied to the entry. Here's what Carole contributed:
Two recipes for soup, one with spinach, the other with lettuce. Since Lombard was still living with her family on 138 North Wilton Place in the spring of 1930 (http://carole-and-co.livejournal.com/81610.html), it's entirely possible she prepared these soups for her mother, Elizabeth Peters, and older brothers Frederic and Stuart, when the family sat down for dinner:
And who knows -- perhaps a few years later, when her legendary residence was 7953 Hollywood Boulevard, she may have made those soups in this (since renovated) kitchen:
These recipes seem easy to make, and if you see me in the supermarket buying flour, you'll know it's for the spinach soup. (I'm not much of a lettuce eater, and for many of us it simply doesn't appear to be a good base ingredient for soup. In contrast, I've enjoyed spinach since my childhood -- and while I loved the Max Fleischer Popeye cartoons, they had nothing to do with it.)
Some of you may not believe soup makes a sufficient meal, and you'd like to complement it with a main course. Never fear -- Carole the cook can help there, too. Try her recipe for barbecued spareribs, from the 1939 cookbook "What Actors Eat -- When They Eat" (http://carole-and-co.livejournal.com/204782.html).
One wonders if somewhere, Lombard has a recipe for seafood, based on her experiences fishing: