Sweet Celebrities: A List of Pastries and Desserts Named After People

Desserts Named After People
Having a food named after you seems like the ultimate legacy--until you consider someone like Gustave Doré, a French illustrator of the 19th century for whom the dish Estomacs de dinde à la Gustave Doré was named. (Hint: estomac means stomach, and dinde means turkey. Yeah.) What follows is a much sweeter list of legacies: a collection of desserts named after people (both real, and fictional).

CakeSpy Note: How was this list made? I started by first consulting Wikipedia's list of Foods Named After People, (which also served as the inspiration for this list); then I consulted other various sources and added a number of other desserts named after people which I discovered; then, each entry was expanded to include a description, interesting stories (and in some cases myth-busters!), and where possible, recipes. If you've got one to add, please leave a comment or send me an email!

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Big Hearted Al Candy Bar: Alas you won't find this one in drugstores: it was a short-lived confection named after an early-20th-century presidential candidate Al Smith (1873–1944).

Ali Babas: Alas, it's not the fictional character that this one is named after: per Wikipedia, though, "The original form of the baba was similar to the babka, a tall cylindrical yeast cake. The name means 'old woman' or 'grandmother' in the Slavic languages, and has nothing to do with Ali Baba; babka is a diminutive of the same word."

Alexandertorte: What's for sure is that this treat consists of pastry strips filled with raspberry preserves. Who invented it is a little hazier: Alexander I was gourmet Russian tsar who employed Antonin Carême. Per this site, Finland claims the creation, allegedly by Swiss pastry chefs in Helsinki in 1818, in anticipation of the tsar's visit there. Here's a recipe.

Gâteau Alexandra: Per Wikipedia, like her husband Edward VII, Alexandra of Denmark (1844–1925) was honored by an assortment of foods named after her when she was Princess of Wales and Queen. Besides this chocolate cake, there is consommé Alexandra, soup, sole, chicken quail, and various meat dishes.

Amundsen's Dessert: Roald Amundsen (1872–1928) was a great Norwegian polar explorer who ultimately met his end in an Arctic plane crash--allegedly he was served a was served this dessert before departing on his final flight, but I haven't been able to locate a recipe.

Anadama bread
Anadama Bread: There are several legends behind this bread (including a family that claims ownership), so I'm going to go with my favorite one: "A fisherman, angry with his wife, Anna, for serving him nothing but cornmeal and molasses, one day adds flour and yeast to his porridge and eats the resultant bread, while cursing, 'Anna, damn her.' " Oh Anna, you may have been cursed, but the bread is so sweet, and delicious when liberally buttered. Here's a recipe from the wonderful Melissa Clark.

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Lady Baltimore Cake
Lady Baltimore Cake: Per What's Cooking America, A Southern specialty that in the present day has many recipe variations. A favorite wedding cake, this mountainous cake is a white cake topped with a boiled or "Seven Minute Frosting." What makes the cake so distinctive is the combination of chopped nuts and dried or candied fruits in its frosting. It takes its name from the main character in Owen Wister's Lady Baltimore. For more lore and a vintage recipe, visit The Old Foodie.

Battenberg Cake
Battenberg cake (also called window cake): Per Wikipedia: This is a sponge cake which, when cut in cross section, displays a distinctive two-by-two check pattern alternately colored pink and yellow. The cake is covered in marzipan and, when sliced, the characteristic checks are exposed to view. These coloured sections are made by dying half of the cake mixture pink, and half yellow, then cutting each resultant sponge into two long, uniform cuboids, and joining them together with apricot jam, to form one cake. Though the origins of the name are not clear, it is rumored that the cake was created in honor of the 1884 marriage of Queen Victoria's grand-daughter to Prince Battenburg, with each of the four squares representing each of the four Battenburg Princes: Louis, Alexander, Henry and Francis Joseph. Here's a recipe.

Sarah Bernhardt Cakes: This sweet seems to waver between cookie and cake, but generally consists of a rich, nutty filling enrobed in chocolate. Either way, they take their name from famous French actress Sarah Bernhardt (1844–1923). Here's a recipe.

Betty: A Betty (or frequently, Apple Brown Betty) is a dessert which consists of a baked pudding made with layers of sweetened and spiced fruit (commonly apples) and buttered bread crumbs. It is usually served with a lemon sauce or whipped cream. The thing I can't tell you is who Betty is (do you know?); however, I can share a recipe I found.

Bismarck: Is the filled doughnut named for Otto Von Bismarck? Some say yes, some say no, but I like the explanation on Joe Pastry:

Some claim Bismarcks are called Bismarcks because Otto von Bismarck was fond of them. There's really no proof of this, since the only thing Bismarck was actually known to have an appetite for were small Northern European nation states. My guess is that the Bismarck got its name not because the Iron Chancellor loved to eat them, but because, being fairly plump pieces of pastry, they rather resembled him (he was not a thin man). But who really knows?

Either way, here's a recipe.

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Charlotte Corday: This ice cream dessert, dreamed up by Charles Ranhofer of Delmonico's, is named after Charlotte Corday (1768–1793), the assassin of the radical Jean-Paul Marat. The directions, from Ranhofer's The Epicurean Part Two are as follows:

Obtain some round crimped paper cases; cover the bottoms and sides with uncooked Andalusian ice cream and fill the centers with biscuit glacé preparation with vanilla, adding a little maraschino to it; also put in some candied orange peel cut in exceedingly thin fillets; powder the tops with pulverized macaroons and cover this with Andalusian ice cream and candied fruits. Lay them in a freezing box for an hour to finish freezing.

Apple Charlotte: Per What's Cooking America, This is a golden-crusted dessert made by baking a thick apple compote in a mold lined with buttered bread. This dessert was originally created as a way to use leftover or stale bread. Some historians think that this sweet dish took its name from Queen Charlotte, known as being a supporter of apple growers.

Charlotte Russe
Charlotte Russe: A cold dessert of Bavarian cream set in a mold lined with ladyfingers; it was invented by the French chef Marie Antoine Carême (1784–1833), who either named it in honor of his Russian employer Czar Alexander I ("Russe" being the French equivalent of the adjective, "Russian") or Queen Charlotte (1744–1818), wife of George III.

Chiboust ingredients
Chiboust cream: This heavenly substantce is a crème pâtissière (pastry cream) lightened with whipped cream or stiffly beaten egg whites. It is eponymously titled for the French pastry chef Chiboust who invented it in the 1840s, intending to use it to fill his Gâteau Saint-Honoré. The filling is also sometimes called Saint-Honoré cream, and I have also seen cream filled pastries called simply Chiboust. Check out this recipe which includes vanilla chiboust (along with caramelized bananas and doughnuts? Booyea!).

Peaches a la Cleveland
Peach pudding à la Cleveland: Another dish by Charles Ranhofer, named for Grover Cleveland (1837–1908), 22nd and 24th U.S. president--although Cleveland was reputed to not much like French food.

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Little Debbie Cakes
Little Debbie Cakes: Oh, to have an entire line of snack cakes named after you! Such is the case of the Little Debbie Brand--the story goes as follows (via the Little Debbie website):

In 1960, McKee Foods founder O.D. McKee was trying to come up with a catchy name for their new family-pack cartons of snack cakes. Packaging supplier Bob Mosher suggested using a family member's name. Thinking of what could be a good fit for the brand, O.D. arrived at the name of his 4-year-old granddaughter Debbie. Inspired by a photo of Debbie in play clothes and her favorite straw hat, he decided to use the name Little Debbie® and the image of her on the logo. Not until the first cartons were being printed did Debbie's parents, Ellsworth and Sharon McKee, discover that their daughter was the namesake of the new brand.

Oh, and if you want more Little Debbie fun, check this out.

Desdemona: Per The International Dictionary of Desserts, Pastries, and Confections: A Comprehensive Guide This is a pastry composed of two 3-inch round biscuits sandwiched together with vanilla whipped cream, brushed with apricot glaze, and covered in a kirsch-flavored fondant; it is named after the wife of Othello in the Shakespeare play. I only wish I had a recipe!

Dione's Chocolate Roll: This very chocolatey jellyroll style cake was the single dessert served at onetime NYC eatery The Egg Basket, and was named for proprietress Dionne Lucas. A recipe can be found in Maida Heatter's Great Desserts, and a variation can be found here.

Dobostorte
Doboschtorte or Dobostorta: Per Wikipedia, It is a five-layer sponge cake, layered with chocolate buttercream and topped with thin caramel slices. The sides of the cake are sometimes coated with ground hazelnuts, chestnuts, walnuts or almonds but the original cake is without coat, since it was a slice of a big cake. It is named for its creator, Hungarian pastry chef Josef Dobos. Just look at this recipe.

Hello Dolly Bar
Hello Dolly Bars: I'll be honest. I don't know the story behind the name of these bars, which also go by "Seven Layer Bars"--but I love the taste enough to include them in this roundup. Here's a recipe.

Lorna Doone: This packaged shortbread cookie made by Nabisco takes its name from the character of the same name in the novel Lorna Doone: A Romance of Exmoor (read more here). Want to try to make your own at home? Try this recipe.

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Mamie Eisenhower fudge: This rich, creamy fudge (which is also called "Million Dollar Fudge") takes its name from the first lady and the wife of U.S. President Dwight D. Eisenhower, Mamie D. Eisenhower. It was her contribution to a 1950's collection of recipes published by Women's National Press Club of Washington, D.C. Here's the recipe as it appeared in that book.

Elvis: I am going to go ahead and say that the banana, peanut butter and fluff combination is associated enough with Elvis to make the list. Uses for the flavor combination range from his favorite sandwich to pies and cakes. Here's just one wonderful recipe.

Essie's Cookies: This recipe, which I found in Betty Crocker's Cooky Book
, is a simple rolled cookie with almond extract; as to who Essie is, I haven't the faintest, but here's a recipe.

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Bananas Foster
Bananas Foster: This dish which beautifully melds bananas, booze, and fire, is named after Richard Foster, regular customer and friend of New Orleans restaurant Brennan's owner, which is where the dish originated. Here's the Brennan's recipe!

Frangipane: This is an almond pastry filling and tart, named for Marquis Muzio Frangipani, a 16th-century Italian of the Frangipane family (also known as Cesar Frangipani) living in Paris. He also invented a well-known bitter-almond scented glove perfume, used by Louis XIII. As for a recipe? How 'bout an apricot, cherry, and frangipane tart?

Joe Frogger: These molasses-rich cookies take their name from "Black Joe", whose partner, Lucretia Brown, invented the recipe.Find a recipe and more lore here.

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Cherry Garcia
Cherry Garcia ice cream: This is a cherry and chocolate flake-flecked ice cream homage to Jerry Garcia of the Grateful Dead by Ben & Jerry. And, there's actually a recipe to make it yourself at home!

Garibaldi biscuits: These raisin or currant-filled English biscuits were named for Giuseppe Garibaldi (1807–1882), an Italian patriot and leader of the drive to unite Italy, after his wildly popular visit to England in 1864. (Per Wikipedia, There is also a French demi-glâce sauce with mustard and anchovies, and a consommé named after him.)

German Chocolate Cake
German chocolate cake: It's named after a good German, but he wasn't actually German. This chocolate and coconut throwback to the 1950's to Sam German, who developed Baker's German's Sweet Chocolate (which falls somewhere between milk and semi-sweet) in 1852. Here's a recipe.

Gianduja: Per Wikipedia, this is a sweet chocolate containing about 30% hazelnut paste, invented in Turin by Caffarel and Prochet in 1852. It takes its name from Gianduja, a Carnival and marionette character who represents the archetypal Piedmontese, the Italian region where hazelnut confectionery is common. Here's a recipe from Dana Treat for gianduja mousse!

S'more Party!
Graham crackers: These s'more-mobiles take their name from Graham flour, which in turn takes its name from Sylvester Graham, 19th-century American Presbyterian minister and proponent of a puritan lifestyle based on teetotalling, vegetarianism, and whole wheat, who probably twists uncomfortably in his grave every time a deliciously chocolatey, marshmallowy s'more is devoured. Remember when CakeSpy introduced the world to S'moreos?

Bombe Grimaldi: Per Wikipedia, this kümmel-flavored frozen dessert probably named for a late-19th-century member or relative of Monaco's royal Grimaldi family. There is also an apple flan Grimaldi. However, I don't think either of these are related to the pizza.

Gundel Palacsinta: This is a crêpe-like pancake stuffed with rum-infused raisins and nuts and served with a chocolate-rum sauce, named for (and invented by) Hungarian chef Gundel Károly. Recipe? This one sounds good to me.

Gypsy Bar: Apparently there was a candy bar named after Gypsy Rose Lee (you know, the one that the musical was based on!). What flavor is it? Sorry friends, I am not sure.

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Hamantash (or Hamantashen): A small pastry allegedly named for the hat of the cruel Persian official outwitted by Queen Esther and hanged, Haman, in the Book of Esther. Hamentashen are traditionally eaten at Purim. You can read more here and find a recipe here!

Heath bar: This American "English toffee" bar is named for brothers Bayard and Everett Heath, Illinois confectioners who developed it in the 1920s and eventually turned the local favorite into a nationally popular candy bar. Here's a homemade Heath Bar recipe!

Oh Henry!: This candy bar, introduced by the Williamson Candy Company in Chicago, 1920, was named for a young man who frequented the company store and was often called (or perhaps admonished?) with said phrase.

Hernani Biscuit: Another Charles Ranhofer special, comprised of a Savoy biscuit with marmalade, fondant, chocolate and pastilles; possibly named for the rascal in Victor Hugo's play.

Hershey Bar: To say that Hershey is "just a chocolate bar" would be a vast understatement. It's a company, a product...and a town! And it is all named for the guy who started it all, Milton S. Hershey, who developed the bar in 1900. Read more here.

Hiroko: This raspberry Grand Marnier cream cake tart (cake and tart! at once!) takes its name from pastry chef Hiroko Ogawa; a recipe can be found in Rose Levy Beranbaum's The Pie and Pastry Bible .

Gateau St. Honore
Gâteau Saint-Honoré: Per Wikipedia,

this dessert is a circle of puff pastry at its base with a ring of pâte à choux piped on the outer edge. After the base is baked small cream puffs are dipped in caramelized sugar and attached side by side on top of the circle of