If you’ve only seen the first movie, you probably know that the people in The Hunger Games are pretty hungry (unless they’re living in the Capitol), but you might not realize just how food is specifically mentioned in the books to illustrate the difference between the impoverished people living in the many districts and the wealthy urbanites in the Capitol. In fact, there are even a few cookbooks written about these foods.
If you’re ready to go check out The Hunger Games: Catching Fire premiere this weekend, consider getting in the spirit before you hit the theater with these delicious recipes inspired by The Hunger Games. I’d like to give a special thank you to Fictional Food, which specializes in recreating recipes from popular fictional sources.
Burnt Nut Raisin Bread
Easily the most famous food mentioned in The Hunger Games is the burnt bread Peeta gives to Katniss –even the movie showed this scene. Fictional Food has a great recipe for recreating these loaves, but you might want to skip the burning step unless you really want your food to be accurate to a fault.
The day before the reaping, Katniss goes out fishing, foraging and trading, returning home to a stew of fish and greens. She adds the strawberries and bread she collected while out to the meal, which makes Fictional Food's picture all the more authentic -and the recipe looks pretty accurate too.
Basil-Wrapped Goat Cheese
Only four pages into the first novel, Katniss’ sister, Prim, makes her a special treat for the reaping ceremony –basil wrapped goat cheese. Fictional Food’s recipe doesn’t just show you how to wrap basil around goat cheese (that would be way too easy), but also how to make your own goat cheese from scratch just like Prim.
Creamy Orange Chicken
Imagine living your whole life barely getting enough food to survive and then meeting with a stylist (Cinna) who pushes a button on a table to reveal this impressive spread. It’s no wonder Katniss immediately wonders “What it must be like, I wonder, to live in a world where food appears at the press of a button?”
While we might not be able to push a button and make our food appear, we can at least head to the store and buy all the ingredients for this luscious, creamy chicken and orange dish served with green peas and pearl onions and pudding the color of honey. In fact, the hardest thing for the chefs at Fictional Food to master was shaping the roll like a perfect flower.
Lamb Stew With Plums
In Katniss’ interview with Casear, he asks what impressed her the most since she arrived in the Capitol. When she answers “the lamb stew,” the host and audience laugh and Casear agrees that he too adores the stuff. This recipe by My Burning Kitchen adapted a Julia Child’s recipe to create this delicious-looking delight.
So what does one actually eat while playing in the Hunger Games? Whatever you can find, really. At one point, Katniss is lucky enough to snare a rabbit and one of the dead tributes still has a fire burning so she can cook it without getting caught by the others. Fictional Food copied her cooking style, by putting unseasoned rabbits on a stick over the fire and the results were surprisingly delicious so at least we know Katniss didn’t suffer too much during that meal.
If you’re looking for arena food that’s a little more complex, try this recipe for groosling soup based on the one Katniss made Peeta.
Creamy Pumpkin Brew
During her Victory Tour, Katniss is treated to some of the best delights the Capitol has to offer. One table alone features twenty or so soups, of which Katniss selects a “creamy pumpkin brew sprinkled with slivered nuts and tiny black seeds.” While there are a lot of pumpkin soup recipes out there on the net, this on by Word Up Nerd seems the most accurate and, since it uses canned pumpkin, you can make it year round -which seems pretty appropriate for Capitol food.
If you want to go all out on a Capitol-style spread, you can also serve up some frothy pink soup dotted with raspberries, like Katniss enjoys after the pumpkin soup.
Of course, not all great Hunger Games food has to actually come from the pages of the books. There’s nothing wrong with using a little creativity to make a tribute to the series –like these delightful Effie Trinket cupcakes that celebrate the character’s delightful and eccentric style.
May The Odds Be Ever In Your Flavor
If you prefer more classic dessert designs to get you in the mood for The Hunger Games, there are plenty of great cakes out there, but my personal favorite is this stunning dessert made by Cake Central user tideeboo larkilou.
I Volunteer As (Delicious) Tribute
For those who prefer cookies to cakes, it’s hard not to love the impressive collection by Life’s A Batch. This great set of cookies not only includes the ones you see above, but also a crest design for each district out there.
If you have the money, space and time, you can also try serving up a roast pig on a bed of beautiful fruits. Just try not to shoot the arrow in its mouth with a crowd of guests around because chances are you probably aren’t as good of a shot as Katniss.
Happy Hunger Games everyone!