Alan Ladd’s Kidney Deluxe

As some of you may remember, we have a vast collection of “Golden Oldies” (movies) – limiting the movies up to the early 1980s……. (See much more on Jo’s own Blog “” for your enjoyment).

We enjoy watching those wonderful movies leisurely in our home with a glass of wine (or two!) and appreciate the many ‘stars of yesteryears’ and we bemoan the sad fact that they don’t’ make stars and films like that anymore, and what a pity it is.

A few days ago I wanted to see a 1957 film which at a much younger age I must have seen at least three times; “The Boy On A Dolphin” – I remember that I liked the story, I liked Alan Ladd but most of all I liked Sophia Loren whom I had met and had tea with at a fashion show in Frankfurt/Main.

There is a song in this film, sung by (unaccredited) the smoky-voiced Julie London – oh how we love this song (ok I admit it here – we love them all) and particularly, her wonderful voice and interpretation of each individual song (you remember her “Cry Me A River?”). Who cannot remember this (to us) slightly haunting performance of one of her most famous songs “…Saddle the Wind” from the film with the same title which was released in 1958 (See in-depth review of this film posted on October 18, 2012 in Jo’s own site.)

“There’s a tale that they tell of a dolphin
And a boy made of gold.
With the shells and the pearls in the deep,
He has lain many years fast asleep;
What they tell of the Boy on A Dolphin,
Who can say if it’s true.
Should he rise from the depths of the ocean,
Any wish that you wish will come true.
You say he’s only a statue,
And what can a statue achieve.
And yet while I’m gazing at you,
My heart tells my head to believe.
If the boy whom the Gods have enchanted,
Should arise from the sea,
And the wish of my heart could be granted,
I would wish that you loved only me.”

And whilst Jo was looking for the Alan Ladd film in our library he came across an old recipe, tucked away many years ago in the cover of this DVD of one of Ladd’s favourite recipes “Kidney Deluxe”. It is a slight variation of our very own “Devilled Kidneys”, which I nevertheless will post here shortly.

I was not able to get mushrooms, bacon and Sherry for the moment and so I cannot show you any photographs. But I leave you with some images from this enjoyable movie instead.

So, here I am with the recipe (for 4 people) for Alan Ladd’s “Kidney Deluxe

¼ x kg lamb kidney
2 x Tbsp butter
4 x slices bacon, diced finely
5 x Spring onions, chopped
10 x large button mushrooms, chopped
1 ½ x Tbsp butter
1 ½ x Tbsp flour
¼ x tsp salt
Dash of pepper
1/3 x cup Sherry (dry) (or equal measure of red or white wine)
Parsley, chopped (for garnish)

Wash kidneys. Cover with cold water. Bring slowly to a boil and simmer for 20 minutes. Drain and slice, cutting away fat and tubes.

Sauté bacon in 2 Tbsp butter until crisp. Add scallions and mushrooms; sauté for 5 minutes.

Add kidneys and cook for another 5 minutes.

Melt in a saucepan 11/2 Tbsp butter and stir in flour. Cook over low heat until blended. Add water. Bring to a simmer, stirring: cover and simmer for 5 minutes. Add gravy, Sherry wine, salt and pepper to kidney mixture. Cover and simmer for another 5 minutes. Garnish with parsley.

That’s it! Enjoy.


5 thoughts on “Alan Ladd’s Kidney Deluxe

  1. Once upon a time, “they don’t make movies like that anymore”, related to old people bemoaning the loss of their youth. However, these days, one only has to look at the “best” films of last year, or even the last 10 years to see that it has become a reality. Hollywood has forgotten how to make good films!
    I will look for the movie – Sophie Loren is always a ray of sunshine!
    I will be cooking those kidneys too – thanks to you and Alan Ladd.

  2. I was just talking with my husband, Don, who saw this movie. He remembers that they had to place Alan Ladd on a box in certain scenes because he was shorter than Sophia Loren. Don lived in the movie theaters when he was young and would love to stop by your place to relive these amazing movies.

  3. *smile* Have to admit I saw this film when it was first released and remember both Alan Ladd and Julie London very well/ We are all different . . . I recall many films from the so-called Golden Age of Hollywood but have to admit my tastes have changed with the times and, when I have time for such, find the more real films of the here-and-now quite acceptable 🙂 ! Remember Ingrid Bergman, I guess and Audrey Hepburn . . . I love kidney dishes, try to get veal kidneys if I can and your recipe is very similar to the one I most often make . . . !

  4. * Just to give you a laugh* Because of his short stature Alan Ladd often wore a short white naval jacket with points downwards in the front atop black formal trousers as a dress suit for the evening. Am sure you remember ! I was a very romantic long-haired blonde who decided to copy the whole deal and my tailor in Hong Kong obliged ! This was the time of social photographers – I could barely get out of the car at the Opera House steps before the flashes began going off – such nothingness but such fun !!! Well, I did behave on regal and semi-regal occasions and actually turned up in silk and satin 🙂 !

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