Megs, Megs, Megs all I want is Megs (to be famous again)

13th Annual Easter Meggstravaganza, Easter Meggstravaganza, Guess Who's Coming to Dinner

I am so sick of doing the Easter Meggstravaganza.

Don’t get me wrong, I love Meg and would do anything for her – anything – but how has the woman not had a bonafide hit to return her to the A-list in the previous 12 years of completing the egg based ritual?

Surely this year will be lucky number 13, right?

(Though with nothing on the horizon, the ritual has its work cut out for it).

Sit back and relax – you (should) know the drill – as I assemble Megs, a struggling musician, a successful TV star, a shockingly still living legend and a hero, to complete the ritual … and save the world.

Because a world without Meg headlining a movie is a world in need of fixing.

Welcome to the 13th Annual Easter Meggstravaganza – Megs, Megs, Megs, all I want is Megs (to be famous again)!

Image source: XX.

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Lemon Kurd Cobain

12th Annual Easter Meggstravaganza, Condiment, Dessert, Easter Meggstravaganza, Snack, Sweets

Let me tell you, when the lights were off I entertained Kurt Cobain … but that isn’t the point of today’s catch-up. It was all about Meggy.

As you’ve probably figured out thanks to basic deduction and the process of elimination, Kurty is this year’s hero in the meggstravaganza process and I’m hoping through the power of my time machine, he is able to give a posthumous-yet-still-alive-in-the-past boost to Meg’s career.

Kind of like how I brought him back to life, technically, through the use of my scientific brilliance.

It would come as no surprise to anyone, that I enjoyed (and still do with the latter) a very close friendship with Kurt and Courtney in the late 80s and 90s. Fun fact: I actually introduced the two after meeting Courtney in the gay clubs of Portland where I was turning tricks at the time. While in the later years of his life we shared an addiction to heroin, our friendship, first and foremost was built on trust, unconditional love and a passion for ELO.

As is the case with a lot of my friends, I ended up being Nirvana’s chief muses most famously inspiring Smells Like Teen Spirit with a love-letter I wrote to Kurt when I misunderstood his kindness.

Using the time machine to catch-up with my deceased friends is always bittersweet, but being able to see Kurt and Courtney at their happiest while she was pregnant with little Frances Bean was a true joy. Kurt was a bit confused as to why I was reviving Meg’s career, given that it was at her height in the early 90s and he assumed she would stay at the top of the A-list, but was very happy to be able to help out.

Proving, once again, why the reluctant voice of a generation is my hero.

After delicately explaining the situation with her poor 00s choices, I needed something nice and sweet to avoid any awkward butterfly effects from my stint in the past. Although I did attempt to thwart the future release of the abhorrently awful The Butterfly Effect. Thankfully I had a batch of my Lemon Kurd Cobain on hand to bring the fun!

 

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Lemon curd is quite possibly one of my favourite things, particularly when it is super tart and added to a pie. I was concerned about how meringue would hold up in the time-travel, so had to stick with eating it straight out of the jar with a spoon. And slathered on bread … but sadly not our bodies. Once again, I ruined my chance of forming a Love-Judd-Cobain throuple.

Enjoy!

 

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Lemon Kurd Cobain
Makes: About 2 cups.

Ingredients
1 cup sugar
2 tbsp finely grated lemon zest
⅔ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
8 large egg yolks
¼ tsp maldon salt
140g unsalted butter, diced into 1-2cm cubes

Method
Whisk together, sugar, zest, juice, yolks and salt in a medium saucepan. Place over medium heat and stir constantly until it thickens and can coat the back of a spoon. A couple of minutes.

Remove from heat and add butter, piece by piece, stirring well after each addition until melted, combined, smooth and thickened.

Pour curd through a fine sieve into a jar and cover with cling wrap directly on the top to avoid a skin forming. Refridgerate until cool before devouring.

 

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Tagene Hackman

12th Annual Easter Meggstravaganza, Easter Meggstravaganza, Main

You know that friend you have that every time another close friend dies you think, damn I miss Mr/Ms X so much, they went too soon … only to Google them to be reminded of their death information and discover they aren’t actually dead?

Yep, that is my dear friend and ex-lover Gene Hackman … making him the perfect candidate for phase four of the Meggstravaganza … and a welfare check.

I first connected with Gene Genie in the 40s through our (well his brother and mine) mutual friend, Dick Van Dyke. While I had a falling out with Dick after using his name during my brief stint in porn in the 60s, Gene and I have enjoyed a close, continuing friendship for the past 70-odd years.

Gene’s passion for my porn career probably helped.

Gene and I enjoyed a brief open relationship in the late 60s, probably due to the social climate at the time, and as such, he was lucky to avoid having me as a scorned ex. This helped in him securing his Oscars, as I am one of the top award season smear-campaigners working in Hollywood.

Gene was so thrilled to see me and I him – mainly out of relief that he isn’t dead. Gene was very excited to be able to share a meal and help his former co-star return to fame (he thinks French Kiss and The French Connection franchise are the same thing). I do get the feeling he was more excited to have a nice homecooked Tagene Hackman though?

 

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But who wouldn’t be?

I mean, a big kick of spice, the majesty of lamb, the trashiness addition of frozen peas and a rich, spicy tomato sauce to delicately cook eggs – what more could you want?

That’s right, nada – enjoy!

 

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Tagene Hackman
Serves: 4.

Ingredients
500g lamb mince
2 onions, very finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, crushed
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground cumin
½ tsp chilli powder
1 tsp paprika
¼ cup finely chopped coriander leaves
¼ cup finely chopped flat leaf parsley
5 eggs
salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp tomato paste
2 tbsp chilli flakes
400g can chopped tomatoes
2 tsp honey
200g frozen peas
Chopped parsley, to garnish

Method
Preheat the oven to 200°C.

In a large bowl combine the lamb, half the onion, garlic, ginger, cumin, chilli powder, paprika, coriander, parsley and an egg. Season and mix well, before rolling out into balls just smaller than golf balls. Cover with cling and leave to rest in the fridge for a couple of hours.

When you’re ready to cook, heat the olive oil in a tagine over medium heat and sweat the onions with the chilli flakes until sweet and translucent.

Scrape the onion to one side of the tagine and add the meatballs, cooking until lightly browned. Add the can of tomatoes, paste and honey, stirring carefully to combine. Reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer for ten minutes.

Remove from the heat, uncover, sprinkle the peas over the top and stir. Crack the eggs onto the top of the stew. Return the lid and place into the oven for up to ten minutes, until the eggs are cooked to your liking.

Remove from the lid, garnish with feta, parsley and serve, generously, with couscous.

 

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The Croque Madame

12th Annual Easter Meggstravaganza, Easter Meggstravaganza, Main

Yes, The Rock is now more widely known as a movie star but let’s be honest he will always be the acclaimed televisual faux-athlete of the WWE … making him, obviously, the perfect fit for the successful TV star of the Meggstravaganza.

Oh, plus he has Ballers that is currently on HBO, so he is firmly in the TV legend realm. Fun fact: Ballers was originally conceived as a romantic comedy about my sexual exploits in the late 90s / earlier 00s, just before he hit the big time.

I first met The Rock while attending the non-shit version of William McKinley High School, where we quickly bonded over being man-children and having to shave in kindergarten. Our love for wrestling also bonded us, although he was less enthusiastic about my Ancient Greece inspired naked/sexy Greco-Roman Wrestling, called Dicko Roman.

While the style didn’t reach the mainstream, I did parlay it into a beautifully scripted porno that, to be honest, should have crossed over to mainstream … like a gay, hardcore Debbie Does Dallas.

The Rock has long been a fan of Meg Ryan’s work (we used to spend our Friday night slumber parties play wrestling and watching her rom-coms), so he was thrilled to be given the opportunity to help her re-ascend to greatness.

He is very busy, what with him currently filming Babe-watch with my on again-on again fling, Zeffy, but was able to take some time out to snack on a rich The Croque Madame.

 

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While this isn’t the most ideal meal to serve someone busy being shirtless and oozing sex appeal like the OG Mitch Buchannon, The Rock just can’t go past the quintessential French brunch version of the grilled cheese. Between the rich white sauce (which admittedly I am very heavy handed with to avoid waste … despite the risk it poses to my heart), the gruyere (which smells like SJP looks, a foot), the whack of dijon and the perfectly fried egg, you can’t help but be there to devour it.

Before a slow-mo run into the water to burn of the extra calories – enjoy!

 

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The Croque Madame
Serves: 2.

Ingredients
30g unsalted butter
1 tbsp flour
1 cup milk
¼ tsp salt
Freshly grated nutmeg
1 cup Gruyere, grated
4 slices sourdough
Dijon mustard
4-6 thin slices of deli ham
2 large eggs
pepper, to taste

Method
Preheat the oven to 180°C.

In small saucepan, melt the butter over high heat until it starts to foam. Whisk in the flour and cook until it is golden and viscose, before adding the milk and salt, whisking constantly until the mixture thickens. Remove from the heat and stir in a pinch of nutmeg and half the cheese.

Lay the slices of bread on a baking sheet, spread with dijon and top with the ham and remaining cheese. Divide half of the bechamel over the top and close the sandwiches.

Melt a lug of unsalted butter in a frying pan over medium heat, add the sandwiches and fry on both sides until golden brown and the cheese is melted and gooey.

Place the sandwiches on the baking sheet, top with remaining bechamel and bake in the oven until it crisps and browns. About ten minutes.

While the sandwiches is becoming gloriously golden, wipe out the frying pan and heat over high heat. When nice and hot, reduce the heat to low and fry the eggs, sunny side up, until the white is gloriously cooked and the yolk soft.

Remove the sandwiches from the oven, plate, top with the fried eggs, season, devour, regret eating so much and run slow-mo into the water, obviously after waiting 15 minutes.

Or you could run in straight away and hope that you hit some trouble and need Zeffy to save you. Which coincidentally is one of our top ten role play situations!

 

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Axl Rosewater Meringues

12th Annual Easter Meggstravaganza, Dessert, Easter Meggstravaganza, Snack, Sweets

As I’ve said, step two is always one of the trickiest aspects to complete of the Meggstravaganza. I mean, no want wants to be classed a struggling musician … unless they are like pre-Usher Bieber. When you’ve enjoyed a successful career however, struggling is quite a down-grade.

Thankfully my dear friend Axl Rose doesn’t let his pride get in the way of helping to reignite careers. Particularly those of the star of his three favourite movies, You’ve Got Mail, Sleepless in Seattle and *cringe* The Women.

I first met Axl in the 80s outside The Troubadour in West Hollywood. I was turning tricks, trying to net myself a musician lover to fund my addiction and my adicktion. While Axl wasn’t interested, he loved my rock and roll attitude and we quickly became friends with me playing an integral part in the ‘85 merger that formed Guns N’ Roses.

We grew apart while I was away in prison and running scams, but I always played an integral part in inspiring the group acting as the Chief Groupie Advisor and muse.

As I said, Axl is a huge Meg fan and was very eager to get into the ritual arriving with a bandana/headress hybrid, some peyote and various useful percussion instruments. Maybe I should have mentioned a KitchenAid Mixer and a dry bowl was all I really needed to make the egg-white sacrifice known as my Axl Rosewater Meringues.

 

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Crusty bakery meringues in the 90s turned me off the treat, until I realised they weren’t meant to have the texture of asbestos powder with similar health benefits.

These little treats are sweet, crusty, gooey and everything you want out of a good meringue. Now with pistachios!

I’m off to the hen house to pick up some more eggs before my TV star friend drops by – enjoy!

 

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Axl Rosewater Meringues
Serves: 8-12.

Ingredients
600g caster sugar
300g egg whites
2 tsp rosewater
Finely chopped pistachios, to garnish

Method
Preheat oven to 110°C.

Place sugar in a small pan over medium-low heat and cook until it starts to dissolve. When it reaches 115°C on a thermometer, place the egg whites in a large mixing bowl and whisk on high speed until the whites just begin to foam like an OD outside the Viper Room in the 80s … aka around a minute.

When the syrup reaches 121°C turn off the heat, increase the mixer to high and with motor running, gradually pour the syrup into meringue. Reduce the speed to medium and continue to beat until cooled to room temperature and thick and glossy.

This takes about 15 minutes, be patient. You want to be hypnotised by its beauty, like Skarsky peen-scene.

Line two trays with baking paper. Use two spoons, shape the meringues into generous, rough quenelles. You can make these as large or as small as you like, Axl for instance loves my little friendship-kisses sized domes, other lovers friends like them realround, thick and juicy. The only three second rule I have is to space them well apart to allow for the growth as they get hard and hot.

Sprinkle meringues with the chopped pistachios and leave to bake for about 2 hours, or until set – firm on the outside and just soft in the centre.

Remove from oven and allow to cool. Devour.

 

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Megg Rolls Ryan

12th Annual Easter Meggstravaganza, Easter Meggstravaganza, Main, Snack

Bless her heart, Megsy is happy with her mediocre career resurgence!

“You don’t have to do this, I worked with Kiernan Shipka!”

Kiernan shouldn’t be responsible for paying your bills Meg, she is still a child.

“But I can’t be the first recipe double-up on your highly-lauded, prestigious and meaningful anthropological documentation of your close, personal relationships with celebrities told via your cooking catch-ups.”

Ah, yes you should be Megs – and more importantly, you deserve the prestigious honour of being our 150th Recipe! We’ve always loved you and you deserve another shot at fame thanks to the Easter Meggstravaganza … it is named after you, after all.

The battle waged for about six hours, but eventually I was able to convince that this would be our year and we’d be able to celebrate her return to fame/form together at the Oscars next year, rather than have it continue to languish like the victim of a biking crash while the Goo Goo Dolls played.

Megs has been busy with her latest actorial-directorial effort with my friend (who I must catch-up with) Tam Honks, Ithaca and really needed the break … and the good juju for reviews/box-office receipts/plaudits that comes with my egg based ritual.

While last year I went with an 70/80s special Devilled Meggs Ryan, I decided this year that the only way to truly get her back on the A-list was something hearty, substantial and relevant aka the culinary embodiment of what we want her career to be – enter scene, Megg Rolls Ryan.

 

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I have really struggled through the recent Queensland summer, so have been dabbling in any meal that is luke-warm yet delicious as I like to eat good food, but don’t enjoy the accompanying sweet dripping off my balls when in the kitchen making it.

These Egg Rolls, which aren’t like their American Chinese take-away counterparts, are light, fresh and packed full of paper with minimal cooking leaving me satisfied but not like I’ve just stepped out of a G-rated, food-safe sauna.

Now to start prepping for my struggling musician pal … enjoy!

 

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Megg Rolls Ryan
Serves: 4.

Ingredients
500g shredded cooked chicken breast
1 large carrot, peeled, cut into matchsticks
1 red capsicum, seeded, thinly sliced
1 Lebanese cucumber, cut into matchsticks
2 tbsp kecap manis
6 eggs, lightly beaten
1 tsp sesame oil
1 tbsp peanut oil
Extra kecap manis and sriracha, to serve

Method
Combine the shredded chicken, carrot, capsicum, cucumber and kecap manis in a large bowl. Stir and season to taste.

Combine egg and sesame oil in a jug. Heat a nonstick frying pan over medium-high heat, add a dash of the peanut oil and swirl to coat. Drizzle a few tablespoons of the egg mixture into pan to form a crisscross patterned omelette. Cook for 30 seconds, carefully flip and cook for 20 seconds. Transfer to a plate, cover and keep warm. Repeat with remaining egg mixture and oil, to form 8 crepes.

Place the egg crepes on a clean work surface. Divide the chicken mixture among the centres of the crepes. Roll up the crepes tightly to enclose the filling – I’m pretty bad tag this, so mine look more like crepe enchiladas. Transfer the egg rolls to serving plates and drizzle with extra kecap manis and sriracha. Devour but not so quickly that you end up Sleepless (in Seattle) with indigestion.

 

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Tina Souffle

Dessert, Easter Meggstravaganza

Step five is always a blessing and a curse. As Peter Parker famously said, with being a hero comes great power and great responsibility – so trying to pin down Teenz is always a tad difficult.

After we failed to befriend Amy Poehler through Adam Scott, we travelled back in time to the Delaware County Summer Showtime to befriend Tina in her (our?) younger years. It worked and thankfully, history was rewritten with the four of us being best friends (she totally got us in with Ames). Her love for us knows no bounds and she went on to write 30 Rock with Tracey Jordan and Jenna Maroney being based on us. We were also instrumental in the writing of Mean Girls, which was actually a thinly veiled attack at our less successful co-stars at the County Summer Showtime.

Tina was always keen as mustard to help us out with our blossoming careers. She got us auditions with Saturday Night Live, however Ben was overly keen to sleep his way in (even when this was explicitly not necessary). He peddled one junk-shot too many unfortunately and Lorne Michaels banished both of us from the studio, swearing our names would never be uttered on set again and rendering us the unofficial voldemorts of NBC.

Despite trashing the brilliant opportunities Tina generously found us, she still considers us two of her oldest friends. She is always willing to help out so jumped at the opportunity to help another person in dire straits – Meg Ryan and her pitiful, failing career.

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As Tina is the gold standard in entertainment, we needed the gold standard of desserts. Chocolatey and rich yet light and delicious like the lady herself, the Tina Souffle ticks all the boxes.

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Tina Souffle
Serves: 6

Ingredients
6 eggs, separated
180g dark chocolate
50ml cream
50g caster sugar
Butter and caster sugar, for ramekins

Method
Heat oven to 200C. Butter and sugar the ramekins.

Over a low heat, melt the chocolate and cream together and allow to cool slightly before whisking in six egg yolks.

Using a stand mixer, beat egg whites until stiff peaks form and slowly add caster sugar until a thick meringue forms.

Impossible Quiche Richards

Easter Meggstravaganza, Main

In amongst all the frivolity and grandeur that marking the torturous death of a religious figure brings upon us, Ben and I decided that for the good of humanity, and in line with our peyote induced visions, we would honour someone who, by divine intervention or other means, miraculously keeps on kicking.

Yes, Keith Richards is the perfect candidate for step four of our Meggstravaganza ritual.

A pal of ours since our days in the boys soprano trio (aka a barbershop quartet minus one) at Dartford Tech, Keith Richards was undeniably the talentless hack of the group. Ben and I had no choice but to force him out of the prestigious trio and lo and behold he landed directly in the arms of Mick Jagger.

Our relationship with Keith was rocky in the years that passed from the glory quartet-minus-one days. We comforted him after his survivor-esque fall from a coconut tree. We connected over the death of his father, and encouraged him to find comfort in the snorting of his ashes. Yet, he never truly forgave us for ruining the happiest days of his life at Dartford.

How is he still alive? In order to find out the secret to his longevity and give him the opportunity to piggyback off our resurgent fame and Meg’s soon-to-occur-comeback, we decided to invite Keith over for a hearty and nourishing, eggy dinner.

quiche 2

Our choice of meal was, like its namesake, a miracle of modern science – the Impossible Quiche Richards.

quiche 5

Impossible Quiche Richards
Serves: 6

Ingredients

6 eggs
300ml cream
½ cup self raising flour
¼ cup finely chopped chives
400g butternut pumpkin, diced into 1cm cubes
125g smoked ham, roughly chopped
½ cup green peas
1 ½  cups grated cheddar, divided

Method

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees celsius. Line a large baking tray with greased baking paper and roast diced pumpkin for 20 minutes or until tender and golden.

Whisk together eggs, cream, flour and one cup cheese and season to taste. In the bottom of a large quiche dish, scatter half the pumpkin, ham and peas. Pour over half of egg mixture and repeat with remaining dry ingredients and remaining egg mixture. Top with cheese.

Bake for 35-40 minutes until set and golden.

Adam Scottch Eggs

Easter Meggstravaganza, Party Food, Snack

Step three is probably the easiest of Easter Meggstravaganza to follow through with; they aren’t struggling or near death and they aren’t overwhelmed by their hero status.

They are just a TV star (go to 4:08, JLD gets it), after all. Plus, Adam Scott is obsessively in love with both Annelie and I, and would do anything for us.

We first met Adam during our BAT period (Before Amy and Tina) when we were trying to Catfish Amy Poehler into befriending us. Well actually, we were aiming to enter into a polygamist marriage with her, but friendship would have been great. While this particular scheme didn’t bring us to Ames, it did bring us to Adam.

You see, Adam Scott was also catfishing us hoping that he could sleep his way to the top with our persona Anneljamin Juddailes: Record Producer, Hip-Hop Mogul and multiple Academy Award Winner.

It was a messy time for all of us, but after working through our feelings on a scrapped episode of TV Catfish (I refused to both put on pants and be pixellated) we became close friends and well, Adam fell for the people behind the masks.

With Parks and Rec recently finishing Adam called us to let us know that he, and I quote “had some time on his hands and wanted to put them to use,” which was the perfect opportunity for us to all whip up a batch of our famous post-coitus snack, Adam Scottch Eggs and help Meg return to greatness.

 

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Scotch Eggs have a reputation for being quite simplistic or unrefined, but with the right blend of herbs and the addition of hot sauce they become the perfect accompaniment for a beer with a generous dollop of Coolaioli. Enjoy!

 

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Adam Scottch Eggs
Serves: 8.

Ingredients
10 eggs
800g good pork sausages, skins removed
1 small onion, finely diced
1 small clove garlic
handful of chives, finely chopped
handful of parsley, finely chopped
generous pinch nutmeg
1 tbsp English Mustard
½ tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp Tabasco, or to taste
150g breadcrumbs
1-2 cups plain flour
vegetable oil, for frying

Method
Preheat oven to 160°C.

Place eight of the eggs into a pot of cold water and boil for 3-4 minutes. Transfer to a bowl of cold water, peel when cooled and leave aside to dry.

Put the sausage meat into a large bowl with the herbs, nutmeg, mustard, paprika and tabasco and season with salt and pepper. Mix it all together well and separate into eight patties.

One at a time, flatten out the patties, place an egg inside and wrap the patty around until it is completely coated. Leave aside.

Get three small bowls out and place flour in one, breadcrumbs in another and beat the two eggs in the third.

Again, one at a time, roll each sausage/egg ball in flour, followed by the egg and then the breadcrumbs until they are all crumbed and ready to go.

Pour vegetable oil into a large pan until it is roughly 2cm deep and place on stove over medium-high heat. When the oil has come to heat, cook them in batches until the crumb is crisp and golden and then transfer to a lined baking sheet.

When all eggs have been lightly fried, place tray in the oven and bake for 10-15 minutes or until the eggs are browned and cooked through.

Devour.

Coolaioli

Condiment, Easter Meggstravaganza, Sauce

Step two is always a bit difficult, what with our friends not wanting to identify as a struggling musician. Did we not mention that was part of the ritual? Well it is.

Anyway, after much coercing (that briefly reunited us with our frenemy Michelle Pfeiffer) we were able to convince our dear friend Coolio that he was no longer really spending most if any of his life, living in a gangsta’s paradise and as such, he needed to help Meg reach redemption and hope she wants to help his re-ascent.

While Annelie was a close friend of Ice T growing up, I was a confidante and pseudo manager of Coolio and encouraged him to expand into film and television, helping him find employment on The Nanny and Sabrina the Teenage Witch, and got him the gig/co-wrote the inspirational love theme of Dangerous Minds.

After my countless disappearances to prison and rehab, Coolio just kind of disappeared from the A-list but being the kind, warm man he is, he never held it against me.

He dropped by hoping to reconnect professionally and write the next It’s Hard out Here for a Pimp/Let It Go and eventually came around to helping us with Meg first before working on our Oscar winning song (I mean, we were always destined for one so why not give him that).

Plus, Coolio goes crazy for his condiments and the promise of our famous Coolaioli was enough to snag his help.

 

Coolaioli_1

 

I love an aioli that smacks you in the face with garlic and this one doesn’t disappoint. Seriously, I have the bruise to prove it. Enjoy…and be careful!

 

Coolaioli_2

 

Coolaioli

Ingredients
1 clove garlic, peeled
1 tsp sea salt, plus more to season
freshly ground black pepper, to season
1 large egg yolk
1 tsp Dijon mustard
500-575ml olive oil
lemon juice, to taste

Method
Smash up the garlic and salt in a pestle and mortar.

Place the egg yolk and mustard in a bowl and whisk together, then start to add your oils bit by bit (this is when you fall in love with your stand mixer all over again as your arm isn’t exhausted). Once you’ve blended in roughly half the oil, you can add the rest in a quicker, steady stream.

When the mixture thickens, add lemon juice. When the texture seems right (or all the oil is gone), add the garlic.

Season to taste and add more lemon juice if needed.