Groucho Marx’s Recipe Challenge

Well, Art is Art, isn’t it? Still, on the other hand, water is water. And east is east and west is west and if you take cranberries and stew them like applesauce they taste much more like prunes than rhubarb does. Now you tell me what you know. – Groucho Marx

What I know is that Groucho may (or may not) have known that there is no recipe commonly known that includes cranberries, applesauce, prunes, and rhubarb.
I have, however, searched and found the separate ingredients themselves in some different places than I expected.
There is a recipe for Walt Whitman’s cranberry coffee cake here at Paper and Salt. I wonder if it tastes poetic.
Applesauce is impossible to photograph well. Forget about it. But there is an unusual recipe I like very much, though I don’t make it often. Here it is at The Dainty Pig. I remember eating this macrobiotic dessert a long time ago at a restaurant on East 7th Street on the lower east side of Manhattan. The custard was layered between chunks of lightly poached apples, and there was some sort of creamy topping. Is whipped cream macrobiotic? I don’t know. Perhaps it was a substitute?
This is a prune bear. I’ve never seen a prune bear in real life . . .
The Prune Bear, made of prunes grown in the Sacramento Valley, Calif., at the Portland, Ore. Exposition. Lib. of Congress
Date 1905
If you live in certain countries you can drink your rhubarb rather than eat it stewed or in a pie. The drawing on the label reminds me a bit of Roald Dahl
A bottle of rhubarb juice premixed with mineral water. (Non-alcoholic spritzer = “Schorle“) Hofgarten is a small Hamburg-based organic juice brand.
Source Flickr: Hamburg – 2009-10-16
Author Henry Mühlpfordt
Groucho, that’s what I know. And I know that if I had to put together all those ingredients in one place, I’d do it in a strudel. But right now, I’ve got to go, there’s another mystery to solve. I am going to solve the case of the Cranberry Goblet.
Or, as you would say,

A child of five would understand this. Send someone to fetch a child of five.


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