The Elven Cuisine of the 3rd Age

Discussion in 'Other Related Topics' started by Elaini, Nov 3, 2018.

  1. Elaini

    Elaini Lost in Eä

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    Hobbits and Elves are probably to best chefs of Middle-Earth, though I reckon the difference is that the Hobbit food is your homely bowl of mushroom soup and pie, as Elves go more in the culinary lines of Michelin star restaurants. Both are great in a different way, especially given the right timing.

    Inspirations

    Considering how long the Elves live they sure have gotten experience and time for many experiments. When the food of Middle-Earth is considered I usually start with medieval kitchen but in the case of Elves perhaps there's a realistic reason to look at our later centuries for inspiration. As long as their food is always organic.

    Though even the medieval food was more advanced than many like to think, not only the stew and roast that you come across in medieval roleplay ever so often. Would it be a surprise if I said that medieval people already knew the recipes for organic food colouring?

    Agriculture

    Once it's considered that the Elves have had plenty of time to bring seeds all the way from Valinor and the northern and southern reaches of Beleriand, the diversity of the plants they grow for food could very well be comparable to ours, with some plants included that do not exist in our world. War of Wrath lasted for about 40 years, there was plenty of time to save the seeds for crops before the flood.

    If one wants to use the extended list of cultivated vegetables used in the medieval Europe as an example, the texts from there mention at least gourd, cucumber, artichoke, spinach, leek, melon, lemon etc. But considering even Valinor, could Elves have known spices like vanilla?

    Here's a few quotes from The Lord of the Rings:

    The recipe for the real lembas was first invented by the Yavanna, and the corn (read: grain) needed for the recipe was also created by her. The secret of the authentic recipe has been granted only to a select few, and Galadriel is one of them.

    I also see no reason why Elves wouldn't have used dairy to make cheese.

    Meat / Fish

    Some who depict the Elves like to portray them as vegetarians. An Elf can have such a choice of being a vegetarian or vegan of course, though the Elves are known to hunt. At least the princes of Noldor and the Elves of Mirkwood have done so, and venison seems to be their favourite game.

    It is also not a strange idea that the sea loving Elves such as Falmari or Falathrim catch fish or shellfish and also collect seaweed on the side, since they are great in all things related to ships and they dive for pearls.

    Sweeteners

    Bees are able to extract honey from nut or almond blossoms and it has a unique flavour, and mallorn trees produce silver nuts. Thus the mallorn honey has been often used an ingredient in a roleplay before. What adds to the special flavour of the ingredient is that the mellyrn grow in Lothlórien of course, but are originally from the island of Tol Eressëa in Valinor. This makes the mallorn honey work as a very elvish sweetener.

    Whether the Elves have probably discovered the other kind of organic sweeteners that can be likened to sugar as we know it (though is likely healthier) can be speculated. Grape sugar might be such.

    Beverages

    Elves are known to enjoy alcoholic beverages, especially wine. Actually they do not get drunk easily, so to get drunk they would have to drink the stronger alcohol such as the famous Dorwinion wine served in Mirkwood.

    Another mentioned beverage is the fragrant miruvor which is mead or liquor made of flowers and it's served both as a festive drink and a cordial.

    Anyway, here's for my research, now tell how you see it. ;)
     
    CirdanLinweilin likes this.