When it comes to food, some presidents went all out for their state dinners. They met with dignitaries, celebrities, and other important people. Here are some presidents that served interesting food at their dinners.
Harry S. Truman
Truman had more of a unique take on his formal menus. He had everything from watermelon pickles, strawberry shortcakes, baked ham, fried potatoes, and even Fritos. Queen Elizabeth II was certainly scarfing down some baked ham and potatoes in the White House in 1951.
Dwight D. Eisenhower
Eisenhower also had a soft spot for simple foods. Not to mention, he liked to cook just like his wife. He served green turtle soup to the prime minister of Canada and the president of Mexico in 1955. His wife Mamie and he also showed class with some down-home charm by serving King Paul and Queen Frederika of Greece some shrimp cocktail, roasted lamb, and Boston brown bread sandwiches.
John F. Kennedy
JFK believed in adding variety and culture to the menu. French chef Rene Verdon was a big part of this, especially when he added a herb garden on the roof of the East Wing. He had classic training to help bring in some French-inspired dishes, such as Tournedos Héloïse and roast sirloin vert-pre. JFK also had an impeccable meal on the menu, which consisted of whipped avocado and crabmeat mimosa, poulet chasseur (hunter-style chicken), and raspberries with whipped cream to serve President Mohammad Ayub Khan of Pakistan.
Carter kept the same motif by serving light things earlier in the evening and heavier items as it got later in the dinner hours. He brought more Southern-style food into the fold with gumbo, con sticks, Virginia ham, and green squash.
The Clinton administration tried to keep the foods on the low-fat side. They eliminated cheese and put in more greens to help push a cleaner diet. However, they didn’t skimp when it came to desserts. They had everything from sugar balls, ice cream, sorbet, and other items. The only thing is they used 2% milk.
Obama has a lot of influence with different cultures from American, Kenyan, and Hawaiian. You saw his background in how he served guests from different parts of the globe. He served dishes that complimented their nationality. For example, he and his wife, Michelle Obama, served Mexican President Felipe Calderon a dinner with Mexican, American, and Hawaiian food in 2010.