Anyone who has seen even a handful of episodes of "Gilmore Girls" can tell you that, above boys and dogs and hating on Taylor and maybe even coffee, Rory and Lorelai Gilmore love to eat junk food. From late night slices of pie at Luke's Diner to Chinese takeout and extra cheese pizza by the TV, both women are famous for being bottomless pits capable of consuming seemingly thousands of calories a day while A) remaining stick thin and B) simultaneously consuming tons of coffee, an appetite suppressant and stimulant.
I've always wondered how the two leading ladies of Stars Hollow must feel inside after consuming, say, multiple Thanksgiving dinners in the span of a few hours — and as of last week, thanks to the creators of "Eat Like a Gilmore: The Unofficial Cookbook for Fans of Gilmore Girls," I finally know. The Gilmore cookbook contains dozens of recipes inspired by actual meals from the show, and the options range from Friday Night Dinner fare to Luke's Diner-esque Americana staples to Sookie's most famous desserts.
Revelist was given four recipes to debut exclusively — Rory's "Birthday Girl Cocktail," Sookie's famous "Muffin Bottom Pie," Paris Gellar-approved mac and cheese, and most absurdly, a Chicken Chow Mein sandwich — ahead of the book's release, so entertainment reporter Liv McConnell (for the sake of this experiment, "Rory"), along with myself ("Lorelai") spent an entire day of our lives cooking up a storm and eating like Gilmores.
Are we still alive? Is this actually a straight-from-the-grave retelling of events, like "American Horror Story: My Roanoke Nightmare?" (Because come on, you totally know that's the twist.)
Keep reading to find out ... and laugh at our Gilmore-esque food fails.
In the Season 7 episode "To Whom It May Concern," Sookie references a "Muffin Bottom Pie."
After starting off our day with a high intensity cardio workout to hopefully kick our digestive systems in gear, we made this bad boy first. Developed by contributors Shehzeen and Mehreen Ahmed, the pie consists of an easy graham cracker and butter-based crust, literal muffin bottoms (you can choose the flavor; we went with an easy chocolate chip), and multiple layers of vanilla pudding.
This pie looked REALLY GREAT when we put it in the fridge to chill, but after a solid hour ... yeah, you see what happened.
The recipe calls to put the whipped cream layer on first and THEN chill the damn thing before serving, but I'm going to go ahead and suggest you ignore that and do the inverse. Aesthetically, this dish was a mess that would make Sookie cringe in horror ... but when it comes to taste, holy shit did the Muffin Bottom Pie deliver.
Liv says this pie confirmed her theory that coffee was actually a euphemism for marijuana on "Gilmore," since Rory and Lorelai eat more like stoners and less like stressed out coffee guzzlers, while I personally was too focused on the pure deliciousness of what I was eating to think too much about the damn Gilmores.
This was the final result. I probably should have tossed some of the cheese sauce for my waistline's sake, but overall the dish was an easy win.
This was a very basic mac recipe for me — this far more complicated asiago and sweet potato mac is my typical winter go-to — but it checked off all the boxes and was our easy favorite of all four recipes. It only took about 20 minutes to prep and under 45 minutes to make in total, and the decadent cheesy flavor was enough to convince a then very full Liv that seconds were a great idea.
I personally kept the leftover mac after our "Gilmore" party and ate it liberally throughout the next few days, to the point where I gained a full five pounds over last week at my Monday morning weigh-in (the Sunday Funday beers probably helped). So, I'd recommend this one for a winter dinner party if you're short on time, big on flavor, and down to wear drawstring sweatpants for several days because you can't fit into your skinnies.
However, this drink — made with vodka, pineapple juice, and grenadine, shaken, then topped off with champagne — was just sweet enough and ultimately very refreshing.
I downed one or two* of these bad boys easy, and would definitely make them again. If anything, it made the large quantity of food I was expected to house go down easier.
... Though not even the delicious cocktails could ease the burden of these Chicken Chow Mein* sandwiches.
I should have known these sandwiches were doomed when Liv sliced her finger cutting the French rolls that barely contain the noodles. (Though she also put BBQ sauce in the cocktail shaker instead of grenadine, so maybe our "Rory" should just stay out of kitchens in general ... of the two of us, she's the real deal Gilmore.)
Her summary of these godforsaken foodstuffs — "I don't think I'll ever be well hydrated enough to comfortably swallow a Chicken Chow Mein sandwich" — says it all. These bad boys were dry. However, the asterisk above is necessary because we actually used Lo Mein instead of Chow due to a mix-up with my local Chinese place (yes, this recipe is literally just takeout on buttered French rolls, because Gilmore), and I'm not sure whether or not sticking to the book's instructions would have improved our eating experience.
My friend Sarah (let's call her "Paris") documented our reactions as we first attempted to pick up the Chow sammies, and Liv's "STAY THE FUCK AWAY FROM ME" pose here pretty much says it all.
Liv buttered the rolls and I already mentioned that she's awful at this, so MAYBE that's why they ended up being an explosion of hot butter from some dry-as-hell supermarket rolls, counteracted with the also relatively dry Lo Mein. But regardless, I won't be trying these again and maintain that LO MEIN NOODLES SHOULD BE EATEN ON THEIR OWN.
Now here's where we talk about how it actually felt to eat like a Gilmore, if only for a day.
It felt like garbage, you guys.
Again, I would absolutely remake the Muffin Bottom Pie (with some tweaks; and maybe only on 4/20), the mac and cheese, and the cocktail from this cookbook, but eating all of this at once just reconfirmed my feeling that the "Gilmore Girls" revival should chill just a bit with the "Rory and Lorelai eat junk food 24/7 yet are still high functioning workers in size 2 jeans" stuff. Because A) I never could have downed all of this stuff without the help of alcohol and WITH tons of coffee messing with my appetite, B) I felt so sick the next morning that I seriously struggled to get to work, and C) my weight gain confirms that 30-something women (like Rory now, and Lorelai back when) absolutely cannot consume this much garbage without some serious water retention at the very least.
Liv is 23 and fared way better than I in terms of how she felt the next day. But since "Gilmore Girls" is now the story of a late-40s mother and her early-30s daughter, they need to show these chicks eating some kale — or at the very least, looking like I do above — come November, or I'm calling shenanigans.
There are dozens of recipes in the Gilmore cookbook that cater to a more healthy eater — some inspired by Emily's famous Friday Night Dinners — so I'd still check it out if the idea of so much cheese and butter repels you.
I ended up with final custody of the cookbook, and despite my feelings about the Chow Mein monstrosity, can't wait to try goodies like the salmon puffs and mock turtle soup to make up for my terrible diet last week.