Party Elephant

Encyclopedia of Creative Cooking: a step by step guide to the world’s best cooking, 1980 

Once I learned of the existence of the party elephant, it was hard to imagine how I had managed to survive without it for so long. Suddenly past dinners and parties seemed dull – gloomy even – and glaringly lacking in oil-soaked elephants.

For anyone unfamiliar with a party elephant, it is described in the book as being “an amusing centrepiece for a buffet table”, and it looks like this:

Party Elephant recipe 1

To make it, you chill a loaf of bread, cut bits off it into the shape of an elephant and then deep fry your animal.

Party Elephant recipe 2

A glace cherry then represents an eye, a capsicum represents a saddle and skewered grapes and cheese sticking into its back represent… I don’t know… Animal cruelty?

Party elephant

Unfortunately I’m going to have to make a confession at this point – and that is *hangs head* – that we ate the elephant.  It was only later that I noticed the warning in the recipe: “Remember that the elephant is only for decoration – you cannot eat it.”

But we did, and it tasted like cold oily bread.

Party elephant after


It was probably the best thing we’ve made.

9 thoughts on “Party Elephant

  1. Was just introduced yo this blog and am reading back through it. I Have to say I think this recipe would be even better, maybe more retro (but probably no more appetizing) if made with Spam.

  2. I think that the skewered grapes & cheese are supposed to be the howdah, but as I recall howdahs were a big thing in the 70s. Or so it seemed. Anyway, hats off to your giant elephant crouton, and to your lovely blog.

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