“Later came sweetbreads and pigeon pie and baked apples fragrant with cinnamon and lemon cakes frosted in sugar, but by then Sansa was so stuffed that she could not manage more than two little lemon cakes, as much as she loved them.” – A Game of Thrones
Food is one of the most memorable aspects of George R. R. Martin’s masterpieces, as he describes for pages and pages the lavish feasts served in the Red Keep’s dining halls, the hearty meals crafted on The Wall while the summer haul lasts, and exotic spicy dishes prepared amongst horses and elephants in the East. While there have been many “unofficial” cookbooks to go along with the Song of Ice and Fire franchise, this official cookbook with an introduction from George R. R. Martin takes the cake. Martin explains in the intro that the first suggestion to create an official cookbook came right after the publication of A Game of Thrones in 1996, and has continued with increasing popularity over the years. The authors Chelsea and Sariann took it upon themselves to try out the many recipes in the series on their blog called The Inn at the Crossroads, named after the famous Inn in the series where Tyrion is taken captive by Catelyn.
The cookbook divides the food into six regions: The Wall, The North, The South, King’s Landing, Dorne, and Across the Narrow Sea. The authors explain that stocking a medieval pantry is not as complicated as it appears in the series, as you can substitute the more exotic meats for something tamer: aurochs (an extinct bovine species) can be easily replaced with beef or bison, goat can be replaced with lamb, pigeon can be replaced with duck, and quail could be any kind of game hen.
Some of the more memorable recipes from the cookbook include applecakes and iced blueberries in sweet cream from the Wall, trout crusted in almonds from King’s Landing, Dornish snake with a fiery sauce, and honey-spiced locusts from Meereen (no meat substitutions here!). Perfect for theme parties or just a creative chef, this book is a mouthwatering fantasy.