Top Ten Books to Feed On

I once again decided to do my own top ten list this week, and as tomorrow is the Holiday of Feasting, these are books that focus on memorable foods and feasts.

1. The Magic Thief series by Sarah Prineas

2. The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows
The title food, plus roast pigs and stews! Also a holiday tea tradition that I would love to bring to life…

3. Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll
Eat me!

4. The Ordinary Princess by M. M. Kaye
Spun sugar castles, and gorgeous swans, and ice-cream licking, and nuts!

5. Mrs. Piggle Wiggle by Betty MacDonald
Whisper sticks!

6. Little Witch by Anna Elizabeth Bennett
Sandwiches, cake, and of course ice cream!

7. House of Many Ways by Diana Wynne Jones
-Ah, the quest to figure out how to convince a magical house to feed you…

8. Her Royal Spyness by Rhys Bowen
-Tea, champagne, and learning to cook and boil.

9. The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien
-Where food equals home, safety, and order…in comparison to hostile adventurers, anyhow.

10. The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis
Turkish delight!

What are some foods or feasts that you found memorable in books? Alternatively, in shows? Personally, I think “Pushing Daisies” the most delicious
series. It has the pie-maker, the cheese cupboard, and all the honey! On the other end of the spectrum is Fringe, where in spite of all the invitations and references to food made to and around her, Olivia only eats in about 5 episodes, and that depends on whether you are willing to count 5 m&ms as eating or to assume that a raised hand in the blurry background can be taken as actually eating a bite of french toast…

Well, what works shall you imbibe this week?

China grounds world’s first CAKE DRONES

China grounds world’s first CAKE DRONES over fears they might fall on someone’s head as novelty delivery service goes from sweet to sour | Mail Online.

The Incake bakery recently purchased three mini-drones and used them to carry its products  from its main branch to customers on the outskirts of the city.

Measuring three-and-a-half feet wide and weighing 22lb, the remote-controlled drones also were mounted with twin cameras to identify customers. 

However, despite its apparent success, Incakes fleet has now been suspended following concerns by the local civil aviation authority.

Officials said all unmanned aircraft need approval before they can be used for business.

Incake said its service will be suspended until it gets the relevant permits.

Incake describes itself as a high-class modern bakery. Orders for its £200 cakes can only be taken online.

The bakery claims its selection of cakes are devised by a ‘British top-class cake master’, called ‘Mr Vincent’.”


I don’t think this really needs anything added.  Cake drones!  Possible cakeshops as spy front!  a “cake master” called Mr. Vincent who may also be planning world domination!  Possible death-by-cake!  THE CAKE-DRONES ARE A LIE.

A Tea Song

A Tea Song to celebrate the first of December and the first real snowfall.


“Tea Song”


The kettle is on,

About to sing its smoke-sweet song.

We’ll pour it in shares,

comforting to our cares,

As the aroma erases what’s wrong.


Set out the mugs!

It’s time to pour our liquid hugs,

And get out the honey,

the sugar, and milk

to stir into our drink deep.


There’s herbs and there’s spice

to make our world nice

As we sip from the magic we’ve steeped.

It’ll flow to our toes,

Curing as it knows,

And the warmth is for us to keep.


Set out the mugs!

It’s time to pour our liquid hugs,

And get out the honey,

the sugar, and milk

to stir into our drink deep.


Crossposted on

Non-Disney Dinner

There are also ample reasons to be thankful life is not really a cartoon or akin to the Disney version of fairy tales as you gather for dinner.


These include:

1. No birds put their germ-ridden feet on your pie in order to make the indentations in your delicious crust.

2. You do not have to eat the same piece of food from opposite ends with someone else in order to show you care.

3. No one will put out their cigarettes in your dessert. (Hopefully.)

4. The kitchen appliances and utensils will not complain about what you did or did not eat.

5. The cooks will remember to properly bake their dishes before applying toppings or decorative touches.

6. The seafood will not wander off your plate.

7. No one will serve you food by launching if off their elbow.

8. There will be no grubs.

9. Your dishes will not be the hiding spot of choice for mice.

10. The condiments will be slathered onto food instead of pocket watches.


(Seven points for every Disney reference you know.  Fifteen points for any new Disney thanks you have to give.)

Fairy Tale Food for Thanks

Today is a day to be thankful that:


1. There is a variety of food instead of simply a house (full) of dessert.

2. The cooks both appreciate and use salt, but it is not the only gift they’re serving.

3. There are enough greens without attempting to steal, beg, or barter them from anyone, let alone a witch.

4. Even if someone did ruin the loaf of bread, or side of potatoes, or pie, no one sunk down through the earth to be tortured as a statue in a realm more creepy than hell.

5. Since the family is gathered around the table, you can be sure that you didn’t accidentally imbibe the flesh of your son, sibling, or other relatives.

6. No matter what path you take to your family’s house, or how many wolfish problems you encounter on the way, there’s now insurance for that.

7. If you find a piece of jewelery in one of the dishes, you won’t have to try it on half the people in the realm before returning it to the right owner.

8. Even ducklings that grew up as just ugly ducks still taste delicious.

9. If a piece of food like apple, poisoned or not, becomes lodged in your throat, odds are someone will know and employ the Heimlich maneuver instead of imprisoning you in a coffin-like display case.

10. No matter how sleepy the meal makes you, you WILL wake up in less than a hundred years.


So raise a glass and give thanks that your holidays are not a fairy tale come true!

(Twelve points for every fairy tale reference you know.  Twenty-five points for any more fairy tale thanks left in the comments that fit the theme.)

Night Rhymes

There’s a reason I’m awake right now:




There was a giant bug

That gave me a giant scare.

Its giant body skittered,

Its redness made me stare.




I wanted it to die,

So I whacked it with a broom.

Then I drowned it in the toilet,

So it’s all gone from the room.




Straight from savage killing to sleep isn’t working for me.  However, I haven’t given up hope-nursery rhymes are often read before sleeping.  Fortunately, I’m not alone, someone else I know is also up tonight:




There was a crazy man

Who liked some blazin’ wings.

The challenge gave him six minutes

To devour those 12 things.




He won the challenge fair,

Through burns and snot and all.

But now he’s burning somewhere else

That’ll keep him in the stall.

Little Otik


This film, based on a Czech fairy tale, is bizarre and horrifying.  The tale goes that a couple wants a child, but is barren.  One day the man finds a tree stump that reminds him of a child, so he shapes it like one. It, Otik/Otesanek comes alive, eats his parents, and rampages around eating mammals until he finds a cabbage patch.  He eats cabbages too, but the old woman who grew them guts him with a hoe.  Otik dies and everybody he ate comes back out.


This movie brings things into the modern day.  The barren wife is the Miss Haversham of wanting a child.  The director adds a lot of strange, obsessive oddities about food.  There’s a neighbor girl who ‘feeds’ Otik people to eat after his father gets creeped out and hides him.  Otik does wind up eating cabbages and presumably getting gutted by a hoe.  However, the (really long) film ends before we see his demise.


I have some theories about all this.

1-“Little Otik” is a statement promoting vegetarianism.  The thing eats whatever it’s told is food.  His parents quickly learn that after he’s tasted meat, Otik wants meat and he doesn’t distinguish between meat other people consume and people.  His interaction with the neighbor girl where she tells him she is not food shows that it can learn and distinguish, but that it sees no difference on its own between pork, cats, and humans.  It’s nothing but a great appetite that eats cattle and people in the tale.  As the girl says, it is ‘blameless’ because it only follows urges that it’s learned.  It even washes its ‘hands’, showing that it can be civilized when someone shows it how.  The thing is, everyone else eats meat too, so no one can explain the line between being carnivorous and murder.  When Otik discovers cabbages, that switch signals the end of this frightening appetite.  The old woman who grew the cabbages is never shown to eat anything else, so has no connection to anything but vegetables.  The ‘vegetarian’, then, saves the day by having the power to stop appetites from eating things they should not.  The director wants us to apply this to ourselves and become vegetarian.  We don’t need to see the actual climax of Otik dying because the consuming of cabbages is what’s really important here.


2. While not specifically vegetarian oriented, this film is demonstrating that the way we approach food is the same way that we approach the other fundamental aspects of life, death and sex.  The father sees babies in, of all things, food during is obsession (perhaps because they’re alive?).  The tree stump was the first non-food item.  Perhaps Otik constantly ate meat because he was a wooden thing trying to become the meat, flesh-and-blood baby the father wanted.  Eat enough meat he’ll become meat, or good enough.

The neighbor girl constantly read/talked about sex and birth while eating or when her mother cooked.  She also had a habit of oddly touching her food.  Clearly, in matters of sex, birth, and food she saw connections and wanted to be involved.  No wonder she was the one who linked food with death by feeding Otik humans.  That’s how she eats, so that’s how she’ll judge the line of behaviour concerning others’ life, death, and food.  Her father’s hallucinations about food just further illustrated that the way you perceive everything else in your life will always come back to what and how you eat.  As the frugal foodmaker, the girl’s mother was the one with the sense and fear to barricade people in and try to protect her family.  This is reminiscent of other fairy tales where wives are chosen and people are evaluated based on watching them eat (cheese, in the version I know).  Thus, the old woman has the power to kill Otik because she not only eats, she balances it out with growing more food to replenish the cycle.  Balance triumphs over excess!


3. Saying that sex and food are two appetites that everybody thinks they know about, but that still encounter all kinds of problems all the time.  The old pedophile’s desire for small girls-wrong, but the adults still like him and refuse to see it.  It’s clear the couple’s desire for a baby is unhealthy, but everyone refuses to see the awful results until the little girl basically tells them by reciting the fairy tale.  Everyone gets together and eats every day, but the food represents their own obsessions-sex, what alcohol does to commercials, children.  Only the person who grows their own food, who’s intimately acquainted with nurturing what goes into their body, instead of consuming or killing it, has the willpower and self-control to stop human appetites when they get nasty.  This version could say the film is a plea to return to more organic things food, or simply to be more aware of what’s around you.  Inside every human is a desire with the size and potential to become like Otik-slaughtering everything in its path.  Be aware and ready to control it!  And, for God’s sake, never just stand by and let someone be the Miss Haversham of anything, ever!


I know some of those overlapped, but I needed all thoughts about this movie out of my head.

In more palatable news (…sortof)

the ragbag – how to make cockle bread -or- for wunderpantry:….

Apparently England used to host a specialty baked good called “cockle bread.”  It involved women kneading/shaping bread dough to their nether regions and then presenting the baked loaf to their preferred man.

“cockle bread was a popular stuart-era baked good said to excite the passions of men. young women would make it for the objects of their affection by sitting on raw dough with their naked derriere, kneading it with their privy parts by madly wriggling around and singing the cockle bread song:

my dame is sick and gonne to bed
and i’ll go mould my cockle bread
up with my heels and down with my head
and this is the way to mould cockle bread”

-Apparently garnered from brand’s popular antiques (1905).

I went looking into this and found an alternative shaping method in Lisa Splittgerber :: Aphrodisiacs in the Libro de buen amor: Serranas’ Sexy Secrets:

“…the tradition of cockle bread which was described as:

. . . a small piece of dough which the girl would knead and then press against the vulva. The dough, moulded to this shape, was then baked in the normal way and the loaf presented to the man she sought to attract. If he ate it, he would fall beneath her spell and be powerless to resist. Similar types of charms have been used throughout Europe and indeed may still be used in primitive country regions (Taberner 46-47).”

Wikipedia says:

John Aubrey wrote of it: Young wenches have a wanton sport which they call ‘moulding of cocklebread’ – they get upon a table-board, and then gather up their knees and their coates with their hands as high as they can then they wabble to and fro with their buttocks as if they were kneading of dough with their arses, and say these words: ‘My dame is sick and gone to bed/ And I’ll go mould my cocklebread’. I did imagine nothing to have been in this but mere wantonness of youth … but I find in Buchardus’s book Methodus Confitendi … one of the articles of interrogating a young woman is, if she did ever subjugere panem clunibus, and then bake it, and give it to the one she loved to eat … So here I find it to be a relic of natural magic, an unlawful philtrum [i.e. aphrodisiac or love charm]. [from A. McLaren, Reproductive Rituals (1984), p. 37].

Nursery rhyme

In the 19th and 20th centuries, Cockle-Bread was a children’s game in which one squats on his/her haunches with hands clasped beneath the thighs, while others grasp his/her arms and swing him/her to and fro. This action was often accompanied by a rhyme:

My granny is sick and now is dead
And we’ll go mould some cocklety bread
Up with the heels and down with the head
And that’s the way to make cocklety bread.”
Forget bread and circuses!  Give me bread, sex, magic, and rhymes-it’s a much more rounded survival plan.    Also, as entertaining!  If the arenas hosted competition in these arts…actually, that picture’s not really that different from how ancient Roman life is often depicted now.  Still, the point is made. 

Recent Revelations concerning Death, Life, and Location

Things I’ve learned the past week:


1. There are many reasons why a skeleton would wear sunglasses.

-To aid scientists develop a way to determine a skeleton’s age due entirely to bone bleaching when compared to the dark circles around the eyes where the sunglasses kept sunlight from whitening the bone.  Hence, how long the skeleton’s ‘slept’ will be apparent from the dark circles around their eyes.  Yet one more way that death is opposite from life.

-Being far more naked than the rest of us, skeletons may be prone to utilizing any and all accessories they can grab.

-Even the dead have a right to fashion sense.

(Discovered due to a parasail ride with and a parachute showing a jolly roger in what appeared to be sunglasses.)


2. Holding a newborn with hiccups is like holding a reverse squeaky toy.  They sound the same and are comparable in size, but while you contract the toy to make it squeak, the hiccuping newborn expands with each noise.


3. There is an island in Michigan (Mackinac Island) which only has one mall strip without a fudge shop in the whole place. (Yum!)

Alice in Independence Land

The blue caterpillar with red stripes blew white smoke shaped like stars over the girl’s head.  “Recite!” he commanded.

“How doth the little crocodile..”

“That is not correct.”  The caterpillar spoke:

“How doth the little patriots

Improve their shining works!

And pour light in glimmering watts

Into the sky to lurk!

How cheerfully they eat and grin,

How heartily work their jaws,

And cheer on their country’s win

With explosions and guffaws!”

“I’ve never heard it that way!” protested Alice.

“Obviously, you’ve never come here on the 4th of July,” drawled the caterpillar.  He blew his fiftieth white star.  Immediately the caterpillar burst up and apart-filling the sky with red and blue sparks.

“Hm-curiouser and curiouser,” Alice remarked.  “How loud and beautiful he was.”  She turned and headed off into Independence Land, unknowingly traveling towards the twins’ great grilling.  Today they were called Twethepeopledum and Twethepeopledee.

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