When I tentatively approached Chris from Cooking Round the World if he would like to run a joint linky for ReadCookEat challenge, he kindly agreed to go along with my crazy idea. We didn't know if there might be any interest from fellow bloggers, as there are so many excellent foodie challenges and linkies around, some have been running successfully for years. Who ever needs a new challenge?
The idea was to choose a work of fiction and recreate a meal mentioned or described in the book.
As an opening entry Chris has chosen a book "Three men in the snow" by Erich Kastner. Pasta and beef were a favourite dish of the main protagonist of the book, and Chris has creatively recreated the scrumptious meal. His Pasta with Beef would make anyone feel like a millionaire for sure.
I went for my favourite series by Alexander McCall Smith, and the famous fruitcake which features in several books. I dedicated my cake to Mma Ramotswe, a traditionally built lady detective.
After the linky was announced, we waited with trepidation on who will be our first entrant and which book and recipe they would choose. We waited and waited. I was biting my fingernails.
And what a marvellous first entry we got. Elizabeth from Elizabeth's Kitchen Diary did a splendid job with her most unusual Medieval Horsebread, inspired by Ken Follett's Pillars of the Earth. She wrote so eloquently on the subject, that I promised myself to re-read the novel, which I have read over 20 years ago. You really should read the recipe, as it is a work of art.
Lovely Cheryl from Madhouse Family Reviews has submitted not one but three delightful recipes (Cheryl, you are my friend forever!).
Butterfly Cake from Butterfly and the Birthday Surprise was a lush lemon curd filled sponge cake. She had it easy, of course, as she had help from two mini-chefs Juliette and Pierre. The cake looked so pretty with a butterfly on top and scattered dried cranberries. Send me a slice by courier!
Very Hungry Caterpillar is a classic, and Cheryl's Blood Orange and Pear Lemon Drizzle cake (with hidden pears) was a homage to the little creature with a big appetite. It was an adorable cake, and I would be happy to have a slice or two with my tea.
Then there was a turn for an exotic dish that I never came across before - Cheesy Briouates, as mentioned in The Darkening Hour by Penny Hancock. These filo pastry parcels are little pockets of deliciousness, and it's another recipe on my must-try-to-make list.
A lot of ideas were buzzing in my head, and this time I moved from Botswana to Sicily and its sex symbol, Inspector Montalbano, a great foodie of modern times. Andrea Camilleri's books are a veritable encyclopedia of the Sicilian cuisine, and I would love to recreate more dishes described in the books. The recipe for Polpette di tonno was mentioned in The Snack thief, and they were absolutely delicious.
Frances Hodgson Burnett's The Secret Garden is a much loved book. There are many food references through the book, and Alison from Dragons and Fairy Dust has chosen Chelsea Buns for her recipe. They look absolutely beautiful and taste lush. They look so gloriously tempting, and would taste great eaten outdoors with a flask of tea or at home.
Sarah Bailey is a published author, and I was delighted that she decided to share her colourful and flavourful Fish stew with us. Saffron is one of the ingredients in this splendid stew. What a feast for eyes! The recipe was inspired by Ian McEwan's novel The Saturday. And mopping up the juices with a chunk of bread is an excellent idea.
And the last entry is a great homage to Thomas Wolfe's "Look homeward, Angel" - an evocative post by Caroline from Caroline Makes. Caroline takes us to North Carolina in 1929. Her recipe for Chicken and ham croquettes is inspired by the authentic recipes from the period. Caroline writes passionately about her favourite author, and her enthusiasm is so contagious that I want to read this novel.
Well, what a variety of recipes and books! Thank you all for taking part!
We're going to run the ReadCookEat challenge in May as well, so if you missed doing a recipe this month, please come and join us next month.