Tuesday, June 21, 2016
Top 9 Fictional Dishes to Try
So I don't know about you, but I have a small foodie streak in me. I get excited about food. Especially if it's something I've never tried before. Coming back from a conference last year, my honest-to-goodness favorite part was the food, especially the amazing creme brulee at the last dinner. I get excited over everything from stopping at a favorite restaurant to eating something amazing at home.
Someday I want to write a modern novel where I can cram in a lot of good food the characters get to eat.
I thought it would be fun to explore the fictional dishes I'd love to try among my current bookshelves. Some books talk a lot about food. Some barely mention it. (Am I the only one who would love to see some more amazing food in fantasy? I mean, medieval meat and bread are great, but let's get creative here!)
So here's my list of dishes I'd love to try from books:
Puny Bradshaw's cornbread. (At Home in Mitford) I'd kill to sit down at her table. (Um, not really. Metaphor for I'D REALLY LIKE TO DO IT.) Jan Karon had a proper appreciation of food in literature, and eating Puny Bradshaw's cornbread would be a dream come true.
Father Tim's ham. (At Home in Mitford) Made for every wedding--I'd gladly have him bake one for some social event I was involved in.
Esther Bolick's marmalade cake. (At Home in Mitford) Did I say Jan Karon had a proper appreciation of food in literature? That cake, when she described it straight out of the fridge, sounded just about heavenly.
Samwise Gamgee's potatoes. (The Two Towers) That famous potato line may not have been in the book, but I'd love to sit Indian-style by the fire and eat a dish of coneys and taters with Sam. (Preferably without the oliphaunts).
Candace's chicken. (Laddie: A True, Blue Story) It sounds way too good--good enough for children to snitch and carry off, all crusty and juicy. But I would never dare take Mother's piece.
Mrs. Comstock's lunches. That woman could pack a lunch box. A Girl of the Limberlost wins hands-down for the best food I have ever read about. My mouth watered over the pickles and spice cake and salads and sandwiches. I think Philip Comstock saw the light over the dinner table.
Scarlet Blaine's pie. (Chasing Jupiter) Life is not complete without reading about her peach pie. I will never taste it. Sadness.
Robin Hood's venison. (Robin Hood) It would be beyond jolly to sit around the fire, listening to tales of daring and eating deer with the lot of them. Only I shouldn't, because it's stolen deer. So it's just as well it's in a fictional book where I can't be tempted.
Ma Quiner's pancakes. (Little House in Brookfield) I ate those pancakes right along with Caroline--so fluffy and good, with the sweet syrup and butter dripping down the sides. Imagine a plate of pancakes just about now, and I defy you not to eat it.
Aunt Irene's chocolate peppermint cake. (Jane of Lantern Hill) I'm not sure it's good to eat at the table of mine enemies, but if she made a cake, then it shouldn't be left to waste.
Meat and dessert. That's pretty much the theme of this post. That's the best in life, isn't it, after all?
If you're a writer, feel free to give your character a signature dish. And don't make it boring, either! Something simple and homelike is perfect, but variety gives them that unique angle they wouldn't otherwise have had.
What food would you love to try from the books you've read?
PS. You can find lots of the titles mentioned in this post under the Book Reviews tab!