It’s time to get your Elvis on.
The 40th anniversary of the King’s death - Aug. 16, 1977 - is looming. The iconic entertainer will be revered with movies, photos, memories - and food.
The also iconic fried peanut butter and banana sandwich usually comes to mind when people think of Elvis’s favorite foods. Apparently, it also does for Melissa Williams and her son, Glaze Hardage. Using the sandwich as a jump start, they created the “Elvis” cake.
“He loved peanut butter and bananas,” Williams said. “We love banana cake. We love peanut butter frosting. And it was born.”
When it comes to creating, Williams, who is owner of Blink restaurant at Southern College of Optometry, said she’s “development” and Hardage, the catering manager, is “research.”
“I come up with an idea,” Hardage said. “I tell her, ‘Hey this sounds like a good idea.’ Then she works on making it a reality.”
They came up with the Elvis cake two years ago, Hardage said. “We were sitting there thinking about Elvis Week,” he said.. “Our banana cake is very popular. And our peanut butter icing is very popular. And we’re thinking, ‘Hmmm. What if we combine the two?’ And once we did, it was a hit.”
The Elvis cake is in rotation with their many other types of cakes at Blink, so you should call ahead to see if they have it that day.
The cake also is served at the Arcade restaurant. Jeffrey Zepatos, the restaurant’s general manager, said the Elvis cake now is available and it will continue to be during Elvis Week. “Every time we get it I can only keep it in stock a day, a day and a half at this point,” Zepatos said.
I stumbled upon the Elvis cake by accident one afternoon when I was eating lunch at the Arcade. I just wanted cake for dessert, so I’d have eaten anything. The restaurant happened to have the Elvis cake that day, so I ordered a hunka hunka of it. I was blown away after the first bite. It’s so delicious. But then I also love the fried peanut butter and banana sandwich, which Arcade regularly serves.
When I recently was at the Arcade, I noticed a man and his wife eating Elvis cake at another booth. I had to ask them what they thought.
“I love it,” said Abrann Harrison from Seattle. “It’s absolutely great. It’s fun. We had the Elvis sandwich at Graceland yesterday, but this is four times more intense. The flavor’s just outstanding.”
The cake was “sweet and peanut buttery and got that little banana in there," said his wife, Sharon. "It was great.”
Meanwhile, back in the kitchen at Blink, I asked Hardage what type of cake he orders for his birthday.
“The banana with the peanut butter frosting,” he said. “Just because it’s so good.”
And who makes it for him? “My mother, of course.”
That’s alright, Mama.
Blink is at Southern College of Optometry at 1245 Madison; (901) 722-3289
Arcade Restaurant is at 540 South Main; (901) 526-5757.