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With The Hunger Games: Mockingjay — Part 1 hitting theaters today, it”s time to start whetting your appetite, not only for the film”s serious eye candy, but also for the vividly described food that makes a few cameos in the movie. From freshly baked bread loaves to that legendary lamb stew, here are more than a dozen provisions from the first chapter of the series that”ll leave you, well, hungering for more of the Games.
Source: Camilla Salem, Lionsgate
During the Games, Katniss recalls her meals in District 12, including the soothing mint tea that her family drank after meals. Re-create your own by steeping fresh leaves in steaming hot water for several minutes.
Break bread with a no-knead loaf, in the same way that Katniss and Gale do on the day of the reaping.
As coaches and stylists awkwardly talk game strategy over dinner, Katniss keeps herself occupied with the silky mushroom soup at the table.
Fancy cakes “with flowers and pretty things painted in frosting” were a specialty of Peeta”s, since he worked under his father”s tutelage at the bakery. We imagine something at least as elaborate as a tiered cake from Ladurée. However, a yellow cake decorated with a few succulents may be more doable for home cooks.
Photo by JAC Photography via Style Me Pretty
Over dinner with Cinna, Portia, Haymitch, Effie, and Peeta, Katniss admires (and devours) bitter greens with tomatoes the size of peas.
Katniss is mesmerized by “cheese that melts on your tongue served with sweet blue grapes.” Re-create a similar experience with thick-skinned table grapes and runny Époisses.
Katniss and Cinna, her stylist, sit down to an over-the-top meal that finishes with a pudding the color of honey. “I try to imagine assembling this meal myself back home,” Katniss reflects. “As for the pudding, I can”t even guess what”s in it.” Perhaps it was a taste of these Snickers cheesecake pudding cups.
Katniss gathers strawberries to eat with her family the night of the reaping. As the fragrant berries are best during the Summer, you can still enjoy them off-season by seasoning them with a little sugar and lemon.
Katniss”s most decadent meal of all time just might be the Capitol”s lamb stew, which she enjoys prior to competing in the Hunger Games. Her stew, piled high with chunks of tender lamb meat and dried plums, is served on a bed of wild rice.
When Katniss parts for the Hunger Games, Peeta”s father, a baker, comforts her with his version of an olive branch: a paper package filled with cookies. We envision them to be sort of like the buttery shortbread shown here. Katniss describes them as “a luxury we can never afford.”
Katniss and her sister, Primrose, often scour the meadow for edible stems like dandelion greens. Our favorite thing to make with the wild vegetable? A creamy dandelion green and goat cheese gratin.
Before Katniss gets coached by Haymitch on her strategy in the games, she sits down to not one but two steaming plates of beef stew.
Alongside the bread, serve goat cheese wrapped in leaves, like the basil-wrapped gem that came courtesy of Primrose”s goat, Lady. Our favorite is Mozzarella Company”s goat cheese, wrapped delicately in a heart-shaped hoja santa leaf.
On her first encounter with Peeta, Katniss receives a warm (if slightly burnt) loaf of bread, filled with raisins and nuts. “We ate an entire loaf, slice by slice,” she recalled. For a similar effect, try the Cranberry and Walnut Levain from Acme Bread.
On the train ride to the Capitol, Katniss has her first taste of the hot, sweet, creamy liquid known as hot chocolate, and it makes her shudder. We think she”d love Mindy Segal”s famous hot chocolate, or our homemade version with vanilla.