Cooking The Simpsons: Clove and Tom Collins Pie

Food Features The Simpsons
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We kicked off this foolhardy series last month with a funny looking but all-around delicious Marge creation—Little Meatloaf Men. That’s all well and good, but there have been plenty of gross Homer food concoctions over the years, and I thought it was time we got our hands dirty. There’s a great episode in Season 5 titled “$pringfield (Or, How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Legalized Gambling),” and it features a desperate Homer breakfast for the books.

Before we get to that, this is another all-around great episode. It opens with a flashback to the bygone days of Springfield, when the town was so prosperous the streets were literally paved with gold. Flash forward to “present day,” and Springfield has fallen on hard times. Mayor Quimby holds a town meeting, and everyone agrees that legalizing gambling is the solution to the town’s money problems. For once, and to everyone’s surprise, Marge doesn’t object. Later, Homer remembers this differently, telling Marge that according to his “photographic memory” she objected to the whole idea. This glimpse into Homer’s memory is one of my favorite things to happen on The Simpsons (levitating beard baby, anyone?).

As is often the case with these sort of deals, Burns’ casino doesn’t work out quite as planned. Everyone gets really into gambling, with Homer landing a job as a terrible Blackjack dealer and trying to teach Maggie how to gamble. Mr. Burns begins a quick descent into germ-fueled madness, and Bart starts his own treehouse casino with special guest Robert Goulet (“Vera said that?”). Marge becomes addicted to slot machines, leaving her family to fend for themselves for days on end. This results in chaos at home, with a great bogeyman scare and a total lack of edible food—which leads us to our recipe this month. I think it’s best just to quote the scene to, well, set the scene:

Lisa: There’s nothing to eat for breakfast.
Homer: You gotta improvise, Lisa. Cloves, Tom Collins mix, frozen pie crust.
Lisa: Maybe mom just doesn’t realize we miss her. We could go down to the casino and let her know…
Homer: Oh, come on, Lisa, there’s no reason to—[takes a bite]—let’s go see Mom.

—“$pringfield (Or, How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Legalized Gambling),” The Simpsons

There you have it. Breakfast of champions. Whole cloves Tom Collins mix a frozen pie crust = delicious? Okay, well, even Homer didn’t think it was delicious, and Homer once ate a single sub sandwich for weeks on end until it nearly killed him. That’s not a ringing endorsement. But I decided we have to start somewhere, and we should probably start by making it as written.

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