Salvador Dalí’s 1973 cookbook, Les Diners De Gala, begins as only a cookbook by Salvador Dalí can, with a fearless statement of principles that celebrates the hedonistic and rejects the mundane: “Les diners de Gala is uniquely devoted to the pleasures of taste ... If you are a disciple of one of those calorie-counters who turn the joys of eating into a form of punishment, close this book at once; it is too lively, too aggressive and far too impertinent for you.” What follows doesn’t disappoint. Among 136 recipes organized by meal courses—including aphrodisiacs—there are instructions for making calf’s brains with bacon, grilled lamb’s head, larded meat à la mode, and frog cream. Corresponding illustrations by the Spanish surrealist painter depict decadent and frequently bizarre meals from the menus of old school Paris restaurants like Lasserre, La Tour d’Argent, Maxim’s, and Le Train Bleu. The dishes look like they were ripped out of a dream. But, as a new edition of the book published this month by Taschen, Dalí: Les Dîners de Gala, attests, these are recipes that any adventurous chef can, and should, make at home.
Dalí loved food, and the recipes in the book were those prepared at opulent dinner parties he threw with his wife and muse Gala. Some of the recipes, including the following egg-based delicacies, transfer perfectly to breakfast. So take a look at these instructions, fire up your stove, and get ready for a surreal morning.
Eggs on a Spit
It is fun to present this dish, which is also good to eat. Using a needle, you pierce the top and bottom ends of each egg and let the insides of 5 of the eggs drop into a salad bowl. Keep the last egg in a cup.
In a large pot brown the onions in the olive oil. When they are a nice color, add the chicken (or giblets) and fry thoroughly before pouring in the water and the wine.
Add sugar, turnips, salt and pepper, and cook for an hour. During that time, hard boil a dozen eggs in boiling salted water for 10 minutes.
Shell and take out the yolks.
Excerpted from Dalí: Les Dîners de Gala. Copyright © The Gala-Salvador Dalí Foundation. Published by Taschen. All rights reserved.