kitchen geek: “Order of the Phoenix” edition

what to make when you’re feeding an Army

With the final film in the series now in theatres, MoT‘s Literary Liason and Noshing Nutritionist feels the pressure to have done with this series (review Chomping in the Chamber of Secrets hereThe Not-Last Meal of the Prisoner of Azkaban here, and the Tri-Wizard Tri-Course Championship Banquet here).  As the series matures, an appropriate culinary approach favors layered elements that reflect the increasing complexity of the plot but also, especially, the multi-faceted complexities of the book’s not-clear-cut characters.  So, dear reader: review book five, warm up the dvd player, and join us for some rations good enough for Dumbledore’s Army–as well as those (as yet) unsung heroes who we can just tell were serious foodies, too.

Deleted scene: To ease the tension of a difficult occlumency lesson, Snape shows Harry around his well-stocked spice cabinet.  (“Of course they are not the same and one must always keep a variety of hot, sweet and smoked paprika on hand, Potter, you twat!”)

concentrate!

Behold: Occlumens salad with Legilimens chips

Preparation: The basic recipe for Sirius Black Bean Soup, adjusted to make it more dip-like, is the base, and really all you need.  But to elevate the bean dip into an appropriately complex analogy of a thinking-bean, load it up: guacamole, cheese, sour cream, tomatoes, and as much cilantro as Prof. Sprout can spare from her garden.

Note: Snape’s description of the mind as “a complex and many-layered thing” that can be “delved into” by masters of Legilimency is exactly like the snack that Muggles call a layered taco dip.  We like the idea that triangular salty chips are somehow like the sharp skill of the  Legilimens spooning into the goopy memories of an unshielded mind, but we also have our limits of pushing this analogy too far and fear we have overstepped even our own generous limits.

Service: Serve with Pure Blood Orange Juice Spritzer

rich in nargle-fighting antioxidants

Behold: Luna’s Tuna Spirals with Kreacher Peachers

Preparation: whirl curry, mayo, peaches, red pepper, red onion and basil; dash it across tortillas and roll them up.  Chill, slice, present.

Note: These little snacking rounds are curious: mildly fishy, with a bright fruitiness alongside the heat of a pepper–not quite searing, but surprisingly, and unexpectedly, purposeful none the less.  Overall sweet, and a nice accompaniment to the evening’s events, but not our favorite part, not by a long shot.

pink, sweet, and cold.  oh, so cold.

Behold: Umbridge Pie

Preparation: Mash layer upon layer of ice cream into a terrine mold (OK, OK, a meatloaf pan works too).  Ice creams should be in as many shades of pink as possible: cherry, raspberry, strawberry, etc. etc. etc.  Any flavor will do, as long as it’s pink.  But really mash it in there: force it under the pressure of ambition and racism and intolerance and other bad things that are hidden in the creamy sweetness of all that ice cream.  Finish with a top layer (which will, when it is unmolded, become the crust) of processed chocolate cookies, because you know there has to be something more bitter and darker underneath all that pink.

Service: Garnish with more super-sweetness.  Cherries dyed an unnatural shade of red? Perfect.  Manipulated to look like the magical eye of a defeated auror? More perfect.

use your napkin.

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