The King of Rock ‘n’ Roll’s eating habits are almost as legendary as his music. At the time of his death in 1977, he is reported to have weighed around 25 stone and there can be no doubt that his taste for rich foods had a role to play in his untimely demise.
However, if you fancy tickling your taste buds Elvis-style, here are five fabulously over-indulgent snacks to get your teeth into.
Perhaps the most famous Elvis snack of all, the peanut butter, banana and sometimes bacon sandwich is now served all over the world in the King’s memory and known simply as The Elvis on most menus.
If you’d like to make one, you’ll need to lightly toast two slices of white bread, sandwich them together with peanut butter and sliced banana, then fry the whole lot in a skillet of butter until the filling is suitably oozy.
If that’s not quite rich enough for you, you can fry some bacon in the butter while you’re at to give the oozy filling some added bite.
According to Mary Langton, one of the round-the-clock cooks in the kitchen at Graceland, the fried peanut butter and banana concoction was a real favourite and Elvis would often order it for breakfast, which could in fact be any time of day.
In an interview with the BBC, she said, “He said that the only thing in life he got any enjoyment out of was eating… and he liked his food real rich.”
Fool’s Gold Loaf
Another fried favourite was given the name Fool’s Gold Loaf, and there are numerous Elvis-lore tales of an 800-mile or so trip taken in his private jet just to get his hands on one. Apparently, Elvis and some of his pals flew from Memphis to Denver just so that he could give them a taste of the best sandwich he’d ever had – a sandwich that came with a bottle of Dom Perignon, making the BLT, bag of crisps and a coke ‘meal deal’ offering at your local supermarket seem like a very poor substitute!
If you’d like to experience what all the fuss is about for yourself, you’ll need to hollow out an entire Italian (sourdough) loaf of bread, spread the inside liberally with margarine, then stuff it with the contents of an entire jar of peanut butter, an entire jar of grape jam, a whole pound of bacon, and deep-fry the lot.
Of course, whether or not you wash it down with champagne is a matter of personal choice.
Elvis’ Party Meatballs
In other words, meatballs wrapped in bacon. Elvis loved meat as much as he did peanut butter and bananas, and while some seem to question his taste for wrapping meat with more meat, it’s not a million miles from the festive favourite of pigs in blankets enjoyed by many every year – but therein lies the difference; it was more than an occasional indulgence for Elvis.
Bologna BBQ Surprise
To prepare this meaty dish, a half stick of bologna (finely ground sausage) was punched full of holes and then slow cooked in the oven for around an hour before being smothered with barbecue sauce and given another 30 minutes or so in the oven on a low heat, being basted with the sauce and meat juices throughout.
And, as if this dish wasn’t calorific enough, he liked to wash down every meal with more than a few glasses of fizzy drink.
Biscuit-filled Lumberjack Breakfast
In her BBC interview, Mary Langton said, “For breakfast, he’d have homemade biscuits fried in butter, sausage patties, four scrambled eggs and sometimes fried bacon.” The biscuits she made are the American variety that are much more like scones than the British interpretation of a biscuit, and sometimes she’d pack one with sausage before frying it in butter.
She says, “I’d bring the tray up to his room, he’d say, ‘This is good, Mary.’ He’d have butter running down his arms.”
Store Cupboard Staples
The fascination with Elvis Presley’s somewhat bizarre diet has led to the creation of several Elvis-related cookbooks including, Are You Hungry Tonight? by Brenda Butler and Fit for a King: The Elvis Presley Cookbook by Elizabeth McKeon.
In the latter, a list of Graceland store cupboard essentials is given, so if you want to dine like Elvis you’ll need to stock up with the following:
- fresh, lean, unfrozen ground meat
- one case regular Pepsi
- one case orange drink
- hot rolls
- cans of biscuits (at least six)
- hamburger buns
- cans of sauerkraut
- three bottles of milk, including half & half
- thin, lean bacon
- peanut butter
- banana pudding (to be made each night)
- ingredients for meat loaf and sauce
- ice cream (vanilla and chocolate)
- shredded coconut
- fudge cookies
- chewing gum (Spearmint, Doublemint, Juicy Fruit – three of each)
So there you have it, all you need to know to rustle up a snack fit for a king, and ensure you become more roll than rock, but there is still one question remaining – did Elvis prefer crunchy or smooth peanut butter?