The Hungover Gourmet


Last Meals: Artery-Clogging Delights with a Side of Justice

I don't think I'd get much argument from even the gentlest THG reader when I say that recently-executed domestic terrorist Tim McVeigh was a monster.

McVeighFrankly, it was hard for even the most vocal death penalty opponent to work up much of a lather over the lethal injection death of the infamous Oklahoma City bomber. This was, after all, the guy who killed 168 people with a rental truck filled with homemade explosives back in April of 1995. It seemed like the only opposition to McVeigh's execution centered around the method. Lethal injection seems like a pretty easy way out for a guy that referred to the innocent kids that perished in the building's day care center as "collateral damage." In fact, execution eyewitnesses made it sound like the buzz-cutted killer simply drifted off to the Great Mass Murderer's Convention in the Sky.

Now, I'm not saying that we should've shot him full of holes, hung him or juiced him. Not unless you could've guaranteed me some sort of "tragic mishap" like the one that befell Jesse Joseph Tafaro in a Florida prison on May 4, 1990. As reported by the good folks at, "Instead of using a natural sponge, they replaced it with a synthetic one. Six-inch flames erupted from the head apparatus and three jolts were required. The Floridians tested their theory by putting a similar sponge into a toaster and then observing that it smoldered and burst into flames. This theory of botched electrocution is causing some controversy, since other states supposedly use synthetic sponges without problems."

To paraphrase Penn Jillette, if you've got to have capital punishment we might as well enjoy it!

But, even worse than McVeigh's senseless act of anti-government terrorism (an act sure to be the subject of many bad Steven Seagal movies) is his blatantly bad taste. It all starts with that Army brush cut he never seemed to shake after his time in the shit. Matched with that orange jumper or those priso-issue khakis it made him look like he was off his rocker!

Yet that pales in comparison to the subject of his last meal. Despite rotting in various prison cells for the last six years, McVeigh kept us guessing until the hours before his June 11th execution to find out what he'd requested for his last meal...

...two pints of mint chocolate chip ice cream.

Ice cream. Doesn't he know that stuff'll kill him? At the very least it can't be good for your teeth!

All the talk about Big Tim's Final Ice Cream Binge got me thinking about last meals. Did you know that the state of Maryland doesn't let you request a last meal? You get whatever's on the menu for that day! Now, if it's Baltimore Crab Cakes, that's not so bad. With my luck, though, it'd be something with beets. Like a Beet Casserole. Dirty screws!

I expected McVeigh to thumb his nose at us one last time with his last meal request, or at least find Jesus. A quick look at the Texas Department of Corrections ('natch) Web site turned up their highly-detailed, extremely entertaining look at last meal requests. Listed without the slightest hint of irony the site details the last requests of the likes of: Dennis Dowthitt (1 dozen fried eggs (over easy), 1 loaf of bread, a bowl of salad dressing, french fries, and milk (3 cartons)); Jeff Dillingham (1 Cheeseburger with American, Cheddar and Mozzerella Cheese, without mayonaise, mustard or onions; Large French Fries; Bowl of Macaroni and Cheese; Lasagna with 2 slices of Garlic Bread; 4 oz. of Nacho Cheese; 3 Large Cinnamon Rolls; 5 Scrambled Eggs; 8 pints of Chocolate Milk); David Gibbs (Chef salad (any dressing except oil and vinegar), two bacon cheeseburgers all the way (cut the onions), deep fried home fries (with chili powder on top), pitcher of fruit flavored milkshake, two scotch eggs (boiled and packed in a sausage roll, battered and deep-fried and served with syrup), slice of pie); Odell Barnes, Jr. (Justice, Equality, World Peace); and, Delbert Teague, Jr. (None. Last minute he decided to eat a hamburger at his Mother's request.).

But pity poor Pedro Muniz who went to the Great Beyond back in 1998. Muniz, doing time for the rape/murder of a 19-year-old college student, requested shrimp and salad for his final meal. In a last fit of irony, shrimp was not available. Muniz was instead served a cheeseburger, french fries and cola. With a little justice on the side.

In case I finally snap and murder an airline counter attendant, here's the recipes I'd like to be used for my Last Meal. I flirted with the idea of "Breakfast for Dinner" featuring a skim latte, Asparagus and Cheese Omelette, side of Creamed Chipped Beef Over White Toast, Scrapple with Ketchup, and a Large Glass of Milk, but I decided that it just wouldn't be comforting enough as I walked that long, dark corridor.

Meat Loaf

2 cups freshly made bread crumbs
1 onion, chopped fine
2 eggs, slightly beaten
2 pounds ground beef
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1 1/2 tsps. dry mustard
1 1/2 tsps. salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
3/4 cup milk

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a loaf pan. Combine all the ingredients in a large bowl; your freshly washed hands are the best tools for the job. Pat into the loaf pan and bake for 45 minutes. – The Fannie Farmer Cookbook

Mashed Potatoes

6 medium all-purpose potatoes
1/2 cup hot milk
4 tablespoons butter
Salt and Freshly ground pepper

Peel the potatoes and cut them into quarters. Put them in a pan and just cover them with cold water. Bring to a boil and boil gently for 15-20 minutes or until fork tender. Drain well and return to low heat. Add milk and butter and start mashing with a potato masher or fork. Smooth out the lumps. Transfer to a bowl and whip with a fork adding more milk if necessary. Flavor with salt and pepper. Serve immediately. – The Fannie Farmer Cookbook

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