The Strangest Recipes Recommended In Elizabeth Taylor's Diet Book

Aren't celebrity cookbooks fun? We're not talking about famous chefs here, but celebs whose claim to fame has nothing to do with food. Sure, today they mostly just release YouTube videos like Paris Hilton's Cooking With Paris, a one-of-a-kind tutorial that teaches us a lasagna-making technique that seemingly involves copious spritzes of body spray. Every once in a while we get a series like Amy Shumer's quarantine cooking show that actually aired on the Food Network, although admittedly her efforts were given screen time during a period where they were short on new content. Back in the olden days, however, food TV was still in its infancy and DIY web shows barely existed — sadly, a proposed Macho Man Randy Savage cooking show from the late 90's was never picked up by any network, so it only exists on a VHS tape.

In the 20th and early 21st century, celebrity wannabe-chefs often preferred the printed word. While many of their masterworks are long out of print, you can go online and purchase a used copy of Can You Take the Heat? The WWF is Cooking! that will allow you to smell what The Rock was cooking at the turn of the millennium, as well as Ted Nugent's 2005 Kill It & Grill It, VH1's Mob Wives' 2014 guide to How to Use a Meat Cleaver, and 1988's Elizabeth Takes Off by the divine Liz Taylor.

Elizabeth Taylor's book is a combination of a memoir and a weight loss plan

This last-named book, penned by a woman who once rivaled Marilyn Monroe for the title of world's most beautiful woman, is actually rather moving. It honestly details her despair as she bloated up to nearly double her fighting weight and describes how she struggled so hard to slim down once again. Not only does Taylor offer motivational advice, but she also gives a blueprint complete with exercises, a daily eating plan with built-in "cheat days," and even a few chapters of recipes (via Internet Archive).

Many of these recipes are just as fancy as you'd expect from an A-lister's table: grilled swordfish, steamed lobster, barbecued squab. Others, however, are pure mid-century strangeness: steamed cucumber? Baked tomatoes stuffed with nutmeg-spiced spinach? Hamburgers with peanut butter? (Oh wait, you can get those at Shake Shack). By far the grossest concoction, however, is a horrifyingly weird tuna salad. While it starts out fairly normal with water-packed tuna, low-cal mayonnaise, scallions, and celery, it then takes a turn for the bizarre when it mixes in tomato paste and goes full-on whackadoo by adding grapefruit segments. Worse yet, the whole icky mess is served inside a grapefruit shell for some extra added bitterness. Blecch, really? Still, as Liz herself said in this book, to lose weight, you've got to "keep your sense of humor," so we're going to assume that salad recipe was meant as a joke.