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In the Kitchen With Bilbo: The Best Geek-Culture Cookbooks

In the Kitchen With Bilbo: The Best Geek-Culture Cookbooks

By Chrissie Gruebel

Ever finish a book series and then feel annoyed for days because you have to live in New Jersey and not in Rivendell? Yeah, us too. But these awesome cookbooks let you stretch out your immersion in the world of your choice (be it Hogwarts, Narnia, or Bela Lugosi's kitchen)! The best part? You can make other people join you out on your limb—because if they wanna eat, they'll put those elf ears on… TRUST.

The Unofficial Harry Potter Cookbook
By: Dinah Bucholz
Those wizards were always eating something! So many feasts at Hogwarts! And granted, they had a bunch of house elves to make it happen, but that doesn't mean you can give cauldron cakes a go yourself, right?! Right.

Skill level required: With 150 recipes, you'll probably be able to find one that suits you. But if you're a first-year, stay away from ones that require you to deep fry anything or you'll probably end up pulling a Longbottom (messing everything up when you're younger, but then growing up to be a total FOX).

The recipes: Packed with magical treats from the memorable (treacle tarts) to the not-so-memorable (Kreacher's French onion soup)—the cookbook details where each dish is referenced and even separates them into specific areas: i.e. Chapter Two is "Delights Down the Alley" and Chapter Seven is "Lunch and Dinner in the Dining Hall".

BONUS PARTY TIP!
Seat your guests at an empty table.
Figure out a way to make the food appear.
If you can do this, you were probably already a wizard anyway, but it is still a crowd pleaser.

A Feast of Ice & Fire: The Official Game of Thrones Cookbook
By: Chelsea Monroe-Cassel and Sariann Lehrer
George R.R. Martin was not messing around when he started describing all the foods in Westeros. This is the ultimate guide to becoming the head of the House of Everyone's Mouth. (Plus, these ladies are creating an LOTR one too!)

Skill level required: You should be able to wrangle most meats (including mutton) and not freak out if you have to truss something.

The recipes: The listings are divided by region and include instant crowd pleasers like rack of lamb, quails drowned in butter and trout wrapped in bacon as well as a few that would make the GoT uninitiated stutter a bit, including honey-spiced locusts (eek?) and bowls of brown (unappetizing name).

BONUS PARTY TIP!
Set up a long table and fill it with many platters of meats and maybe drumsticks of some sort and also meat pies. Set out a bowl of fruit as a palate cleanser. Maybe also have it at a castle? Do you live in a castle? Invite us over. Dessert will be figs and lemon cakes. Then, kill everyone … but let us go home first.

Wookiee Cookies: A Star Wars Cookbook
By: Robin Davis
Don't let the title fool you—this collection of recipes isn't just for intergalactic bake sales/Jedi masters cheating on their Jedi diets. It's got a wide range of dishes for all the meals of the day including snacks.

Skill level required: Can you grill cheese? If so, you got this.

The recipes: Although it's important to note these dishes are inspired by the Star Wars universe, as opposed to being pulled directly from it (which feels a little like cheating, to be honest but still), the food/character puns such as Obi-Wan Kebabs and Boba Fett-uccine are basically everything.

BONUS PARTY TIP!
You obviously have to set it up like the Mos Eisley Cantina (mood music here).
Make everyone's knife look like a light saber and any time a toast is made, it must be spoken like Yoda.
But if no one shows up in Leia buns, call the whole thing off.

The Lord of the Rings Cookbook
By: Vanessa Kittle
This lady pulled out every mention of food in the LOTR world and then created its recipe. If nothing else, she gets one hundred million points for research, execution and creativity.

Skill level required: If you're cool with getting back to basics (canning jams), you'd do just fine in Middle Earth.

The recipes: The small sample available mentions lots of cakes and lots of butter: seed-cakes, buttery teacakes, buttered scones. The best part? She includes the passage where each dish was mentioned in the books—so if cross-referencing makes your mouth water, this is the right choice.

BONUS PARTY TIP!
The. Hobbits. Know. How. To. Party. So while we know you'd at first be leaning towards a Fires of Mordor-themed party (so welcoming!)—hear us out. This party must happen outside under a huge tree. Get all the paper lanterns you can find!Invite 144 of your closest friends! Take off your shoes! Set off some fireworks! Quit your job, you're a hobbit now! Or, just go to Denny's and mosh the entire Desolation of Smaug menu.

It Came From the Kitchen
By: Geoff Isaac & Gordon Reid
From the people who brought you some of the most iconic characters in the sci-fi/fantasy/monster movie genres, this cookbook gives you Dracula's real-life favorite meal served up with fun morsels of trivia which you can feel free to lord over your guests at any time.

Skill level required: All trivia buffs who can boil water are welcome.

The recipes: Bela Lugosi's cabbage rolls, peach kuchen from Ray Bradbury plus more (as the book describes) "monstrously delicious celebrity recipes" from a who's who of actors and writers: Boris Karloff, Alfred Hitchcock, Janet Leigh, etc. The best part about this book is that made by two guys who are unabashed fans of the genre and the cover is really cool.

BONUS PARTY TIP!
Have the party during a thunderstorm and make everyone come dressed as their favorite movie monster. Then, every time you place a dish down on the table, yell, "It's ALIIIIIVE! It's ALIIIIIVE!"

The Official Narnia Cookbook
By: Douglas Gresham & Pauline Baynes
If you're trying to pass along both your love of The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe AND cooking to your younger siblings or cousins or whatever, this is a good book to give a whirl.

Skill level required: Most of the recipes are fairly simple to make, but a few require such fancy cookery as a double boiler, parchment paper, or venison.

The recipes: Lots of old-school English stuff, like porridge and marmalade and things that have lemon curd in them, but if you just convince the little ones they're centaurs or orphans and they'll love it! Or you can just enjoy it on your own. Highlights: Turkish delight (obvs), Mrs. Beaver's Marmalade Roll-on-the-Run, and meat pasties!

BONUS PARTY TIP!
Bare minimum: Make the front door of your home look like a giant wardrobe.
If you really want to sell it: invite your friends over for an Autumn Feast and serve them humans! JK, JK.
Go halfway: Dress as the White Witch (never skip the opportunity to wear faux fur and an ice tiara).

What SFF series do you think has the best food?

Tags: movies, tv, cooking, sci fi, fantasy, the hobbit, books-and-comics, cook books

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About the Author
Chrissie Gruebel

Chrissie Gruebel is a bunch of things separated by commas, but more often than not, she’s a writer, comedian, and wearer of too many colors at once. Here she is on Twitter: @chrissiegruebel.

Wanna contact a writer or editor? Email contribute@sparknotes.com.