Celebrate President’s Day by whipping up a White House-worthy recipe—picks inspired by the favorite foods of presidents past.
In the movie The Contender starring Joan Allen as an embattled candidate for vice president, actor Jeff Bridges portrays a U.S. President with an unapologetic appetite. Along with political intrigues and back-room deal-making that would make Newt, Mitt and Rick run for the hills, Bridges is also a man who enjoys using his Presidential privilege to snag a shark steak sandwich at literally a moment’s notice. Nice perk.
In honor of President’s Day, we thought we’d find out what foods get Oval Office access in real life. Don’t you want to know what the president is noshing on when breaking for lunch, dining with the first family or stopping for a snack between matters of state? Here are some top foodie faves of presidents past plus an inspired recipe for each.
George Washington may or may not have chopped down a cherry tree, but historians insist the nation’s first president was indeed fond of cherries. Here’s a Cherry Tart Washington would have adored. Click on the image to get the recipe.
Of all the presidents, Jefferson is perhaps the most noted for his gustatory enthusiasm—he was an avid gardener and was especially fond of Virginia corn, peas and salads of every sort. Several of his handwritten recipes remain in existence, among them a vanilla ice cream recipe. Jefferson served the rich ice cream base with Savoy cookies. Get a modern version of the president’s ice cream by clicking on the image.
John Adams was known to appreciate any food that would “delight the eye and allure the taste,” and he liked to indulge each day in a tankard of apple cider as soon as he woke up. His wife Abigail, however, tended to stick to the simple but familiar New England fare of their pre-presidential life. Find a recipe for New England Jonnycakes similar to those the Adams might have eaten after the click.
President Zachary Taylor was a man who enjoyed his meals, especially the Creole delicacies and dishes he had picked up a taste for during his military days in Louisiana. A rich gumbo like ours would no doubt have passed muster—click on the pic for the recipe.
President William Taft counted peach salad, seafood of every sort, and salted almonds among his favorite indulgences, along with an appetite for elaborate, multi-coursed meals and receptions. Lobster Newberg was included in the menu for his first diplomatic tea—for a more modern version, click on the pic.
Though he’s now a vegan on the winning side of the weight loss battle, President Bill Clinton’s love of food is legendary: Cheeseburgers, pies, Southern-style barbecue, cinnamon rolls and chicken enchiladas. Click on the pic for a chicken enchilada recipe that Bill would have loved back in the day, and take a look below for a couple more Presidential recipes.
—By Stacey Norwood, Multimedia Editor