Did you ever think about what you would like for your last supper? Prisoners have long had “a last supper” request where they are allowed to choose a menu. If you knew without any uncertainty that you were going to die tomorrow what would be your last meal on earth?
I was intrigued when I saw the title of the book My Last Supper – 50 Great Chefs and Their Final Meals by Melanie Dunea with an introduction by Anthony Bourdain. I ordered a used copy because I could not justify spending $30 on a book that I would read and give away but when it came I was thrilled. It has graced my coffee table for weeks now and I am finally getting around to really reading it and enjoying it before I pass it along to one of my food loving friends.
According to the book jacket this is a favorite game of chefs. Who knew? Coming up with a last meal seems like a pretty simple task, doesn’t it? Photographer Melanie Dunea added a few more dimensions to the game by including questions of what the setting would be, what beverage would be consumed with the last supper, musical selections, who would be present and finally who would actually prepare the meal. I found this to be a fun way to think about what I would want to be my Last Supper.
While I knew very few of the chefs who were included in the book I learned a lot about each one of them by their choices. Melanie Dunea expertly photographed and recorded answers to the questions and the book is full of glossy photographs depicting various settings sometimes humorously as in the shot of Anthony Bourdain showing off his preference of roast bone marrow (trust me I won’t post a picture here but you would understand if you look up the picture) or magically as the shot of chef Helene Darroze depicts butterflies and sparkles.
Wylie Dufresne lounges amongst a butcher block table filled with cheeses and eggs to show his love of all things eggs and cheese.
Laurent Tourondel shares his love of Krispy Kreme doughnuts along with french fries and Heinz ketchup.
The choices range from ultra fancy preparations to simple meals like fried chicken with settings as varied as the universe. Favorite guests included family, other chefs alive and dead, and friends and loved ones.
I put my thinking cap on and came up my Last Supper requests. Since I am far from being a chef my requests would be simple but I do love to eat so of course it would be all the perfect comfort foods. Now I am not saying I would have to eat a large quantity of any of the items I am listing but just a taste would make me happy.
Grilled Chicken Breasts Marinated in Olive Oil and Herbs
Fried Macaroni and Cheese
Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Sweet Chili Sauce Glaze
Tomato Basil Mozzarella and Olive Salad
Crusty Bread with Dipping Oil
Fresh Fruit Salad with all my favorite fruits
Strawberry Trifle made with Brownies
Strawberry Rhubarb Pie
Setting: Anyplace near a body of water. Could be a beach. Could be in our backyard at our mountain home once we get the backyard all landscaped the way we want it to be.
Beverage: Definitely some iced tea, maybe some wine, coffee and hot tea to go with the dessert choices.
Musical selections: 70’s and 80’s music on shuffle from my music collection
Dining companions: All my family and all my best friends that I have met over the years in all of the different places we have lived. There would be a huge crowd of loved ones —including all my loved ones who are no longer present on earth.
Who would prepare the meal? We would all do it together but Grandma Bonnie would make her fried mac and cheese for me, Chris would grill the chicken because he does that best, Micah and Aaron would collaborate on the veggie prep and the rest I would prepare ahead of time. Anyone who wanted to could pitch in to help. I never turn down help.
So what about you? I would love to hear what your Last Supper would be. Let me know in the comments and remember that all comments this month go to help support our Comments for a Cause SAFE.
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I think I’ll have to ponder this one a bit…….but this sounds like a book I would purchase (yes, even at $30!!!). The names you mentioned, actually, are somewhat familiar to me. Your meal course choices sound totally yummy!!!!! Great post/book!!!!!
Thanks, Doreen. It was a really fun book to read and the recipes at the end are a bonus, of course. Thanks for stopping by. I would love to hear what your perfect meal would be.
Your caprese salad is delicious. This is a very thought provoking book. Rented it a long time ago but somehow missed the recipes? I think I’d want to eat soup!
Soup would be great as well. I think a bunch of different kinds — a sampling of the favorites because they are definitely comfort food and if it was indeed going to be my last meal I would need comfort perhaps. 🙂
You forgot something! You need to get a small plate of hand-made gourmet chocolates on that list!
The book sounds great! Why not try to make the meals?
I think my perfect last meal, even though I love to cook, would have to be any gourmet, beautifully-presented, 5-course meal, with champagne and elderflower ligueur cocktails, all prepared and served to me by a world-renowned chef. (Just no octopus, squid, clams, mussels, snails, etc. or eggplant, please!) And, like you, definitely all my loved family, past & present (including Sunny!) and best-est friends (including you!)
Oh, and I think it would have to be served outside, on the deck, in the Tetons, at the Jackson Lake Lodge just an hour before sunset. The most beautiful sunset in the world….
That is a perfect setting!!! We love it there and that view from that lodge is amazing!
I know!!! I loved how when the sun was setting, you could hear a pin drop inspite of the number of people all around you!
BTW, did you see the post on NExtDoor about Connestee being in the path of the total eclipse of the sun in August 2017? We should have a cocktail party!!!!
I did see that post and yes–we definitely will need to do something! What fun!
Oh shoot–I did forget those delicious chocolates!!!! I love your meal as well. It is perfect!
I would have perogies made by mom or grandma with fried sauerkraut and apfle kuchen made by mom. (German food from my childhood is my comfort food) LIke you, I would want all my family and friends over the years with me. In fact I want this meal right now!!
Cheesecake would definitely have to be in my last meal because I LOVE cheesecake.
You can have mine anytime—not a cheese cake lover at all. I left off chocolates from the local chocolate shop—Marci reminded me of that.
Something I may want to buy also. My last meal, my own ceviche with shrimp. Perfected it to my specifications, now one by one my children are sharing in it with me!
Oh that sounds wonderful, Patricia. I bet you make a great ceviche!
I’m a huge fan of this game! Though I’ve never thought it out before. This will require more thought! For that I thank you. P.S. yours sounds lovely.
What a cool book!! This question has honestly crossed my mind a time or two, I mean how can it not when you grow food, smoke & cook it, blog about it, eat it, and entertain people with it? It would definitely involve smoked pork loin glazed in honey whiskey BBQ sauce, green beans with bacon, garlic, onions and butter, and my grandmas garlic mashed potatoes and finally warm grilled pineapple over homemade vanilla ice cream 🙂
I love your meal and yes—pork is a must have for you! The warm grilled pineapple over homemade ice cream sounds fabulous.