Widely considered as one of Britian’s best film directors and producers Alfred Hitchcock masterminded the thriller genre – cleverly blending suspense, glamour, humour and sex into cult works that include Psycho, Rear Window, Vertigo and Dial M for Murder. According to Frank Decaro’s latest publication, The Dead Celebrity Cookbook, Hitchcock was also the master of the Quiche Lorraine. Both gourmand and glutton the rotund son of a greengrocer references and celebrates food in over 10 of his films.
Born in Leytonstone, London in 1899 he later moved to Hollywood becoming an American citizen in 1956. Here he was often found indulging in the haute cuisine of Chasen's and Romanoff's, two of the best-known temples to posh food in Hollywood. At home, he loved the classic British dishes, such as Dover sole and meat pies, cooked up by his beloved wife Alma and Quiche Lorraine – his personal speciality. Hitchcock has been quoted as saying whilst he abstained from eating eggs, he could willingly consume an English breakfast three times a day. “I’m not a heavy eater,” Hitchcock once said. “I’m just heavy and I eat.”
“I’m not a heavy eater,” Hitchcock once said. “I’m just heavy and I eat”
Alfred Hitchcock: To make the crust work together pastry flour, butter, egg yolk, salt, and cold water. Chill dough 1 hour, or until needed. Roll out half the dough to line a 10-inch pie pan. Crimp edges and prock crust with a fork. (Reserve rest of dough for another use.) For filling, scatter diced ham on the crust. Sauté onions in butter until they are soft, but not brown. Spread over ham. In a saucepan, beat 4 eggs with salt, cayenne, and nutmeg. Gradually add 2 cups hot milk, beating with a wire whisk. Continue to beat the mixture over a low heat until the custard begins to thicken. Pour it into the pastry shell and back at 375° for 30 minutes or until the custard is set and the top is golden.
2 cups pastry flour
½ cup butter
1 egg yolk
1 pinch salt
¼ cup cold water
2 or 3 slices ham, diced
2 onions, chopped
2 cups hot milk
Today it was announced that Sienna Miller will play Hitchcock actress Tippi Hedren in a new film. The BFI is also currently raising money to help restore, preserve and present Hitchcock's surviving silent films in 2012.
The Dead Celebrity Cookbook: A Resurrection of Recipes from More Than 145 Stars of Stage and Screen by Frank Decaro is out now.
Text by Lucia Davies