Sure, everyone eats — there’s nothing remarkable about that. But with so many available options (meat, dairy, fruits, vegetables) and so many ways to prepare each dish (broil, bake, steam, chop, mash, puree), it’s what and how people eat that can be telling. Journalists Matthew and Mark Jacob investigated the dining quirks of some of the world’s most famous and infamous people, and in their new book, What the Great Ate: A Curious History of Food & Fame (Three Rivers Press, $14), they give readers a look into the culinary lives of well-known actors, musicians, politicians, philosophers, artists and authors. Here are just a few of the juicy tidbits revealed inside:
CLARK GABLE loved to eat raw onions, causing many a female co-star to complain about the heartthrob’s breath.
Apple co-founder and CEO STEVE JOBS is a vegetarian who named his company after his favorite fruit. He once tried an all-apple diet, believing (incorrectly) that it would eliminate the need for him to shower.
Former Boston Celtics coach RED AUERBACH forbade his players from eating pancakes on game day. He thought that they stayed in the stomach and made players lethargic.
ANDY WARHOL had a serious sweet tooth. Once, while he was going through Customs at an airport, his bag was searched. It was full of candy, gum and cookies.
When JOHN F. KENNEDY was growing up, his family was so large, they would go through up to 20 quarts of milk a day.
At each of their concerts, rock group Van Halen requested a bowl of M&M’s — sans the brown ones. Though the request seemed petty, singer DAVID LEE ROTH explained that it was a test to determine whether more important arrangements such as electrical and stage setups would be properly completed.