31 July 2013

From Marlene Dietrich's Hotplate: Banana Trifle

A onetime chef at one of Marlene's favourite Parisian restaurants wrote a book about dishes the star liked to order (for delivery, naturally), and Dietrich herself shared some dish in her ABCs, but no-one has yet published  "The Way To Cook With Maria Riva's Mutti".

The recipe for Banana Trifle below may or may not be Dietrich's: it was called hers in a 1943 edition of the fan magazine Hollywood, not always a reliable source. Certainly, the lack butter or dill in a Dietrich recipe is suspect, but this may have been the sort of thing John Wayne liked between takes on the set of Pittsburgh.

You will need:

1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup water
1 heaping tsp cornstarch
1 even tsp sugar
1/2  tsp salt
2 bananas
6 ladyfingers
1/2 pint cream or whipped white of one egg


Slice bananas and lay them in a glass dish in alternate layers with four ladyfingers split in two. Heat milk and water in a saucepan; add sugar, salt and the cornstarch which has been diluted in a little cold water. When thick, pour over the bananas, and let stand until cold. Then cover top with whipped cream. Split remaining ladyfingers in two, and place them upright around the edge.



  1. That recipe is in dire need of rum!

  2. Any recipe that suggests you can replace a cup of cream with a measly egg white has problems not even rum can solve!