Zoidberg: Oh my God, is that Captain Crunch casserole?
– Game of Tones (Futurama season 7 episode 23)
Futurama’s Philip J. Fry is a man out of time, but it’s a credit to the show that, unlike many other fictional time travelers, he finds that he’s much more at home a thousand years into the future and doesn’t spend all of his time trying to return to the year 1999. A world filled with mutants, aliens, and killer robots is much more Fry’s liking, and he even celebrates the fact that everyone he’s ever known is long dead in the series pilot, Space Pilot 3000.
As the seasons progress, though, Fry’s past and his feelings toward it are explored, and we begin to see a bit more nuance with regard to Fry’s place in the world, both past and future. The most bittersweet stories of the series are often ones in which Fry tries to come to terms with his past and the world he left behind, as in episodes like Jurassic Bark, The Luck of the Fryrish and even the DVD movie Bender’s Big Score.
Season seven’s Game of Tones is the series’ final (for now) look into the past of Philip J. Fry, and it strikes many of the same chords as does Jurassic Bark. Early drafts of Jurassic Bark had Fry’s mother in the place of Seymour the dog, and it was supposedly she who would die waiting for Fry to return at the end of that tear-jerker. Game of Tones, then, allows us to finally explore the relationship between Fry and his mom in a similarly heartfelt way. The existence of Lars and his life in the early 21st century complicate both of these episodes, but we’ll leave that be for now.
Game of Tones also introduces us to one of Fry’s favorite foods, as this episode is the first to mention Captain Crunch casserole. It’s apparently still well loved in the 31st century, as Dr. Zoidberg recognizes it on sight when he (and other Planet Express members) journey into Fry’s dreams.
- 3 cups pureed sweet potatoes
- 2/3 cup light brown sugar
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- ½ cup melted butter
- 2 eggs
- ½ cup milk
- 2 tablespoons self-rising flour
NOTES (1): you can find canned sweet potatoes (or yams) at your grocery store – and they are typically canned with exactly three cups inside (plus liquid – drain the liquid if you use these). If you use canned sweet potatoes, use a potato masher to, well, mash the potatoes before you mix in other ingredients.
NOTES (2): if you don’t have self-rising flour, you can use the following ingredients to make it: for every cup of all-purpose flour, stir in 1 ½ teaspoons of baking powder and ½ teaspoon of salt. For a recipe like this that only calls for 2 tablespoons of self-rising flour, that comes out to only about ¼ teaspoon of baking powder and just a pinch of salt.
- 1 cup light brown sugar
- ¼ cup melted butter
- 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 cup Cap’n Crunch cereal, crushed
NOTES (1): there’s a lot of butter in this recipe, both in the casserole and especially in the topping. Use your best judgment.
NOTES (2): I used Cap’n Crunch Berries instead of plain ol’ Cap’n Crunch, because why not? I thought it would make the end product look nicer (it didn’t). I also saved some whole pieces to sprinkle on top. As we’ll see, these whole pieces got a bit singed in the process, but they tasted fine.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Casserole: In a large bowl on medium speed, mix together all casserole ingredients. Pour ingredients into a buttered casserole dish.
Topping: In a small bowl, stir together all ingredients. Crumble the mixture on top of the sweet potato mixture. Bake 35-40 minutes, until top is golden brown and set.
Morbo Gives It: 6/10 Delivery Boys. I didn’t have high hopes for this dish starting out, and they sank a little further when I pulled the final product out of the oven. However, I do think it tasted better than it looked. The overwhelming flavor of Captain Crunch casserole is, easily, sugar. It’s so sweet that it’s almost too much, and this is coming from someone who loves sugar almost as much as Fry loves Slurm. It wasn’t bad, but probably isn’t something that I’ll make again.
Tale. Of. Interest!
Game of Tones is the only episode in the series to reference Captain Crunch Casserole. However, we learn that Cap’n Crunch has earned a promotion and is now referred to as Admiral Crunch in the second episode of season one, The Series Has Landed.
I had another recipe in mind when considering Cap’n Crunch casserole. Upon doing a little more research, though, I settled on the above and it’s probably more in line with what we saw in Game of Tones. However, I have plans to make a second Captain Crunch casserole recipe soon in a post I will call… “Captain Crunch Casserole – Part Two”!
Dork Calling Orson
I find that I use this blog to promote my Comic-Con appearances a lot. That’s cool. I’ll be heading back to San Diego once again for this year’s show, and if you’re also in town between July 20 and the 24, I hope you’ll look me up.
I’ll be appearing at the New England Comics booth at various times between Thursday and Sunday (booth #1807), and I’ll also be sharing a space in the small press section (booth #M06). I’m bringing two prints with me that I’ll be giving away at various points of time.