Dive into many a novel and you’ll experience fantastical descriptions of dishes that seem just too good to be true – after all, where would James be without his giant peach? And don’t get us started on the wondrous world of Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory. To celebrate the International Day of Literacy, we’ve taken a trip down memory lane and re-figured recipes from our favourite classic novels:
Oliver Twist: porridge
Regardless of whether you’ve dabbled in Dickens, you’ve probably heard the line ‘please, sir, I want some more?’. Gruel is the object of Oliver’s desire, born out of hunger and a need to survive. Now, because we’re not in the market for bland sloppy oats, we’ve come up with a sweet alternative, adding some maple, pecan and chia seeds… although we’re not really sure they were a thing in Dickens’ day.
Maple and pecan baked porridge
The BFG: frobscottle
Dive into this classic Roald Dahl novel and you’ll probably remember the green-coloured drink that makes drinkers fly and gives them… whizzpoppers. After the BFG hands Sophie a bottle (the bubbles go down, not up), she remarks that it tastes of vanilla and cream, with a hint of raspberries. While our version may not make you fly, it certainly will deliver on flavour (so your taste buds will take flight, if nothing else):
Sparkling lemon and thyme drink
Harry Potter: sherbet lemons
Accio dessert! This recipe is dedicated to Albus Dumbledore’s love of sherbet lemons. Described as a ‘muggle sweet’ – meaning they are popular among the non-wizard community – the professor of Hogwarts loves them so much that he uses their name as the password for his office. We’ve added a little meringue-jazz to our take:
Lemon sherbet meringues
The Hunger Games: burnt raisin bread
In the first novel of Suzanne Collins’ trilogy, the main characters share their first encounter when Peeta throws Katniss a raisin loaf. While it may not be for the same selfless reason as Katniss, you’ll definitely be saying ‘I volunteer!’ when it comes to the question of who will take the first slice of bread.
Walnut and raisin spelt loaf
A Song of Ice and Fire: all of the pies
Let’s be honest, with all the HBO hype surrounding George R. R. Martin’s epic fantasy novels, you’ll struggle to find anyone that hasn’t heard of Game of Thrones. And what character optimises food? Hot Pie, naturally. Notorious for his hearty love of pastry, this fictional legend is there to make the day brighter one dish at a time.
Chicken and mushroom lattice pie
Happy International Day of Literacy everyone, may the food be ever in your favour!