Red Green meets Julia Child. For the Loganberry Books Edible Book Project, to make a book-themed food I chose Moby Dick. Mainly because I had a rubber whale, I was going to make a cake and put the whale on top of it, with blue frosting, and a model whaleboat, and a pretzel stick for Ahab’s leg, and a bit of Hannuka gelt for the coin nailed to the mast. Then I re-read the rules, and all of the submission has to be edible. So, plan B: A savoury tea sandwich whale frosted with cream cheese frosting, with chives for a spout and olives for eyes.
First off, get two loves of white bread from Breadsmith, unsliced. The second one is a spare. Cut off the crusts, and carve the loaf into the rough shape of a sperm whale. Use the crusts to make the flukes and the fins. Make three lengthwise slices, butter all the areas that will touch filling with soft butter, and fill with filling. I used chicken salad. I know tuna is traditional for these things, but tuna smells bad. I also worry about tuna and egg on something that has to sit out for a couple of hours before consumption.
To make the filling, take 1 can chicken, ½ yellow onion diced fine, 1 stick of celery diced fine, 1 shallot diced fine, 3 dashes hot sauce, ½ cup sultanas and enough mayonnaise to hold it all together.
Having carved and sliced the whale, wrap a Styrofoam sheet with aluminium foil and secure the foil with the cook’s secret weapon, duct tape. Place the bottom slice of loaf down on the tray and spread generously with filling, cover with next slice of bread. Spread second layer of bread filling, cover with next slice of bread. Spread third layer of bread with chicken salad, cover with top slice of bread.
Take cream cheese and beat it until it is fluffy using the paddle attachment on the mixer. Dilute it with milk, approximately two tablespoons to 16 oz of cream cheese. Make it the consistency of frosting, and spread it using a spatula or the back of a spoon. Make a spout from a carved piece of celery. Make eyes out of olives. Chill it until a quarter of an hour before serving.
The completed whale
This won the prize for “Most Literary Submission” this year. Salome, with her red velvet Millions of Cats cake, took home “Most Delectable” and “Best in Show”. W00t!