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Monday, September 17, 2012

More Great Blog Stuff

A few weeks ago, I spoke of my visit to Notions Unlmited bookshop, where I bought A Feast Of Ice And Fire, a Game Of Thrones cookbook, and I mentioned the attached web site,  Inn At The Crossroads, where there are recipes and posts in general about the kind of food and drink you'll find in George R.R.Martin's epic series where, let's face it, characters always seem to be eating and drinking in between stabbing, poisoning, hitting each other, pushing each other off high towers, beheading people, etc., etc. A bit like another favourite of mine, Babylon Five, really, though those characters either eat at the station restaurant or cook traditional foods in their quarters in between backstabbing each other diplomatically, discovering dark plots, turning into Minbari or flying small spaceships...;-) That, too, has a  fabulous cookbook, by the way.

The thing is, the authors of the Game Of Thrones cookbook and web site have their own blogs. One of them, Chelsea, who writes as "Needs Mead" has a terrific food blog called Food Through The Pages. This web site, which you should check out here, concentrates on food to be found in various books, such as The Hunger Games, Harry Potter, the Pern series, Neil Gaiman's American Gods, even Moby Dick! I am going to have a lot of fun surfing this site, both because I can't wait to see which universes she uses and because she researches historical recipes for those connected with books set in history-themed fiction.

For example, Harry Potter Butterbeer. You'll find recipes for this all over the Net, but they tend to be based on what the creator imagines it might taste like. And that's fine and kudos to those who can come up with original recipes for something from fiction. But J.K. Rowling's wizard community has been around for centuries. They have been doing many things the same way for hundreds of years. And Ms Rowling knows her history and folklore; where she invents something it's using a real base. So instead of making up her own recipe from scratch, Chelsea has done some historical research and found a 16th century recipe for something called buttered beer!

It makes me feel bad about being so vague about food in my own writing; I know something about historical foods, have even made a bit for SCA banquets and such, but not a lot and in my books characters don't eat much . Once my oven is fixed I will be doing lots of physical historical food research for future fiction. Meanwhile, I will let Chelsea do it for me.

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