Chef Zane Grey

Zane Grey was a dentist who hated his profession. Two passions ruled his life. The first was baseball; in fact, he attended the University of Pennsylvania dental school on a baseball scholarship. His brother, Romer, played in the major leagues for the Pittsburgh Pirates but Zane never realized that ambition.

His second obsession was hunting and fishing. He dreamed of a career that would let him escape a dreary daily routine of bad breath and decayed teeth and spend all his time outdoors. Zane Grey, unhappy dentist, turned to writing to escape. He published his first novel, "Betty Zane," in l903. This was the first of some 90 books he authored. Hollywood made 110 movies from his work and the Zane Grey Theater was a popular TV series.

He followed his first book with "Spirit of the Biorder." A few years later he struck gold with "Riders of the Purple Sage." It sold more than 2 million copies and has been made into movies three times. It made Zane Grey a millionaire. An interesting footnote is that actor Randolph Scott starred in many of the movies based on Grey's books, and his "To The Last Man," filmed in 1933, introduced a dimpled, curly haired moppet named Shirley Temple.

Zane Grey married Lina "Dolly" Roth in 1905. With his financial future secured, he built a palatial mansion in Altadena, Calif., where Dolly raised their three children. For his part, Zane Grey took off on what must be the world's longest camping trip. He was gone several months per year, hunting or fishing all over the world. Many of the records he set for his catches are still in the record books. Dolly understood her husband's wanderlust. Their marriage ended only with his death in 1939, at age 67.

The trips were not all pleasure. Grey was a disciplined writer. He took along a collapsible writing board and spent part of each day writing. He produced 100,000 words per month. Some were hunting and fishing article for magazines such as Field and Stream, even though he was primarily remembered as a western novelist. These sagebrush dramas were his forte. His passion for baseball inspired him to write several forgettable baseball epics but the westerns paid the bills.

His tsunami of words created a backlog of unpublished manuscripts. The publishers did not want to flood the market so only two or three Zane Grey westerns were released annually. He died at home in Altadena on Oct. 29, 1939. Many of his backlog were published posthumously.

Zane Grey fished and hunted everywhere: Florida, Alaska, Arizona, Nova Scotia and the South Pacific. He hooked and landed a 1,040-pound blue marlin in Tahiti but one of his favorite fishing spots was Oregon's Rogue River Valley. As usual, he combined business with pleasure, using the locale as the setting for another cowboy story. His book "Rogue River Feud" was another completed manuscript that was not published until 1948, nine years after his death.

After his phenomenal success as a writer, Zane Grey went camping in style. He took his cook, George Takahashi, along to clean and cook his catch. George knew his boss liked salads but lettuce wilted after a few days. Cabbage, peppers and carrots lasted for weeks without refrigeration. He often served him his cabbage-carrot salad.



65279;1/2 cups finely shredded cabbage

1 cup grated carrots

1/2 cup diced green peppers

1/4 cup grated onion

1/2 cup mayonnaise

1/2 cup sour cream

Dash of celery salt, pepper if desired

PREPARATION: Mix mayo, sour cream, and grated onion, add spices and toss with vegetables. Serve.

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