While your mouth is watering uncontrollably as you’re reading the tasty descriptions, you might wish you could taste those recipes in real life and experience the same feasts your heroes do.
Here is a small guide to help you fulfill your culinary wishes.
Game of Thrones A Feast of Ice and Fire: The Official Companion Cookbook
The official Game of Thrones cookbook and cooking blog!
Fans and amateur chefs Chelsea Monroe-Cassel and Sariann Lehrer have recreated a wild range of dishes from across the Seven Kingdoms and beyond.
I have to admit here I have never – yet – read or watched Game of Thrones. I have not tried the recipes, but the reviews are overwhelming. The recipes seem to be perfect for fans, role playing events or medieval reenactments.
A Song of Ice and Fire is one of my favorite book series and to see the wonderful food descriptions of George RR Martin’s epic novels come to life in a cook book is just brilliant. I find that it’s a unique and powerful way to connect to a story that I love, and at the same time has some great recipes both old and modern to try my hand at. I love cooking, I love reading, and this combines both in a fantastic way. I’ve made Sister’s Stew (absolutely amazing!) and recommend that recipe highly. Even if you’re not a fan of George RR Martin’s novels Chelsea and Sariann have put together a cook book that has some wonderful dishes for anyone to try.
The Pies of Locke Lamora, Food Through the Pages
Chelsea Monroe-Cassel, one of the GOT cookbook’s authors – see above – provides a wealth of recipes taken from fantasy books, especially from the Lies of Locke Lamora by Scott Lynch.
This wonderful fantasy novel is set in an alternate Renaissance city not unlike Venice, with strange Roman Empire-like gladiatorial games – albeit with sharks. The heroes are clever thieves.
As they grow up, their thief master – the Garrista – wants them to learn everything they might need to blend in posh society, including cooking and food.
“At one end of the banquet table were desserts (the Fifth Beautiful Art): cherry cream cakes encased in shells of gold leaf that were intended to be eaten; cinnamon tarts painstakingly assembled with honey-paste glue into the shape of sailing vessels, a whole fleet of little ships with white marzipan sails and raisins for crewmen. There were hollowed out pears, their cores replaced with cylinders of river-melon fruit or brandy creams; there were shaved river-melons, their green exteriors scraped down to reveal the pink flesh inside. Every exposed pink face bore a relief sculpture of the crest of Camorr, and alchemical globes set within the melons made them glow with an inviting pink light…”
Do you think this:
“So Locke scuttled about, embarrassment and relief mingled on his face. The meal was roasted capon stuffed with garlic and onions, with grapes and figs scalded in a hot wine sauce on the side. Father Chains poured all of his usual toasts, dedicating the last to ‘Jean Tannen, who lost one family but came to another soon enough.’”
The Lies of Locke Lamora, by Scott Lynch
is mouth-watering? Well you can try to cook it yourself thanks to Chelsea Monroe-Cassel, who writes:
Scott Lynch is one of those authors whose humor-tinged descriptions send readers reeling into an exotic and interesting world. I personally love the Gentlemen Bastards series, and in no small part because of the food. It’s unexpected, quirky, and almost exclusively delicious.
I haven’t tried them yet and can’t find reviews, but the recipes do seem delicious.
There are recipes for other universes too, such as Neil Gaiman’s!
The Parasol Protectorate’s Tentacle and Treacle: Receipts for the Victorian Household
The official Parasol Protectorate Cooking Blog, by none other than Sariann Lehrer, one of the cooks behind the Game of Thrones cookbook (see above).
The Parasol Protectorate is a steampunk series by Gail Carriger set in an alternate Victorian world. Tea times and sophisticated meals are important, as part of the Victorian tongue-in-cheek etiquette portrayed in the novels.
This blog aims at explaining to Victorian and modern readers alike how to cook some of the food you can find in the books.
While I can’t find reviews on the blog, a lot of people ask questions the author answers very competently. The recipes seem to be good basics for a Victorian/Steampunk tea party, and I’d like to try some of them soon myself – now that I have an oven!
The blog: http://tentacleandtreacle.com/
Butterbeer, Bertie Bott’s Beans and Chocolate Frogs: Warner Bros Harry Potter Studio Tour, London
“Why don’t we go and have a butterbeer in the Three Broomsticks, it’s a bit cold, isn’t it?“
Butterbeer is a foaming beverage characters in Harry Potter can enjoy, especially in Hogsmeade. Have you ever wondered what it might taste like?
Have you dreamt of eating a chocolate frog and getting an animated card? Have you always wondered if Bertie Bott’s Every Flavour Beans can be that bad?
“You want to be careful with these. When they say every flavour, they mean every flavour – you know you get all the ordinary ones like chocolate and peppermint and marmalade, but then you can get spinach and liver and tripe. George reckons he had a bogey-flavoured one once.“
Well, if you visit the Warner Bros Studio Tour in Leavesden, near London, your dream will come true! A small booth in the Backlot serves butterbeer and you can buy a lot of Harry Potter themed candies in the shop!
I visited the Studio Tour in August and couldn’t wait to try everything. I did enjoy butterbeer. It’s very sweet, tastes a bit like a candy, but hey I’m very resilient as far as sugar is concerned. So I liked it.
However most people are repelled by the too-sweet taste:
This is where you can buy some “butter beer” but my advice is don’t! it’s revolting and nothing like beer, you’d do just as well drinking a tin of golden syrup.
I loved the Chocolate Frog, huge and made with high-quality chocolate. The beans were as expected: some of them were very good, but the bad ones were horrible, which is the point though!
The Warner Bros Harry Potter Studio Tour is located in Leavesden, near London: http://www.wbstudiotour.co.uk/your-visit/getting-here#where-are-we
I strongly recommend visiting it, if you like Harry Potter or props!
Everett Singh’s recipes in the Everness Series, by Ian McDonald
In Planesrunner by IanMcDonald, young Everett Singh join an alternate universe airship’s crew while searching for his abducted father. His culinary experiments are mouth-watering:
Captain Anastasia took a sip of scalding, cinnamon-infused chocolate. She closed her eyes in bliss.
‘Mr Singh, that is damn fine chocolate, What’s the little suspicion of heat?’
‘Chilli, ‘, Everett said. ‘A pinch. I once had it in this coffee place in Seattle.”Mission for you, Mr Singh. Christmas is coming and we must have bona manjarry. Does you Punjabi granny have any recipes for turkey? […]’
Planesrunner, by Ian McDonald
I’ve been adding some Chilli to my hot chocolates ever since I’ve read this book. The food descriptions really suit the atmosphere and give a homely feeling to the airship, where most of the main characters live. However the recipes are not really detailed so there’s no easy way to fully enjoy the book’s food.
In the Everness airship.
The Hunger Games… What did you expect?
While I have not read any of the Hunger Games books (didn’t watch the movie either) I stumbled upon this very interesting article while researching mine:
In the postapocalyptic fantasy series “The Hunger Games,” starving characters eat whatever they can kill or forage: wild dog, horse, tree bark, mouse meat.
It’s not exactly the kind of story that demands a recipe swap.
Yet fans have tried to create some Hunger Games inspired recipes and an unofficial cookbook can be bought.
“People were like, ‘It didn’t taste that good,'” she says. “I said, ‘It probably didn’t taste that good for them either.'”
Crystal Watanabe, Fictional Food
“odd but definitely edible, It helps you relate to the character and understand how she was feeling.”
Fictional Food blog: http://www.fictionalfood.net/category/books/hunger-games-book/
Other Fantasy Food
Lord of the Pans
A very interesting article about Tolkien inspired food: http://www.tor.com/blogs/2013/12/hobbit-recipes-food. Lambas everyone?
Fantasy-inspired Japanese Cafés
Alice in Wonderland! http://www.lacarmina.com/blog/2008/02/gothic-lolita-ginza-cafe-alice-in-wonderland/
By the way, I recommend La Carmina’s book about Tokyo’s craziest restaurants: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/6494892-crazy-wacky-theme-restaurants