1. Anders Backlund
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    Anders Backlund Contributing Member

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    Research Help - Fancy Asian Food

    Discussion in 'Research' started by Anders Backlund, Sep 18, 2010.

    I'm currently running a play by post fantasy RPG game on a different forum, hoping to add some improvisation skills to my writing while having fun with my online friends. I've run into a problem I might need some help with, though.

    Basically, my players are in a culture remiscent of medieval Japan or China, and have ended up at a feast at the royal palace in honor of the birthday of a local princess, which includes a large banquet of classy food.

    The thing is: I really suck a food. It's just one of those things I simply don't know anything about. So now I'm in a situation where I need to describe a very extravagant feast, only I don't have a clue what these people are supposed to eat.

    So, yeah, I need some help with the research here. I was planning to use the historical Manchu Han Imperial Feast as a basis, except I can't seem to find any detailed description of the actual dishes save a handful of the stranger ones. (Monkey brains and so on.) I also considered just making something up, but again, I don't really comprehend the concept of food. Anyway, at this point I'm a bit desperate, so any advice is welcome.
     
  2. Elgaisma
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    Elgaisma Contributing Member Contributor

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    More modern but try typing in Sample Menu Jumbo Floating Restaurant Hong Kong. I know we had napkins from there with menus on when I was a child 12 course fancy sounding banquets. I think it is fairly posh I don't see my Uncle going if it wasn't.
     
  3. Mafuane
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    Mafuane New Member

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    I my degree is East Asian studies so....

    they would eat most of what they could rear or hunt, in the way of meat, however if they're buddhist they might be veggie, i would just keep it light, some sort of meat carcass (rabbit maybe), some sort of hotpot, and some veggies (bamboo shoots)
     
  4. Anders Backlund
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    Anders Backlund Contributing Member

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    If it helps, I'm kinda trying to establish an East Asian-style culture in a western type enviroment. They grow both wheat and rice, plus a lot of different kinds of fruit, keep the same domesticated animals and hunt the same game as you'd find in say Europe, and they have a considerable fishing capacity.

    Basically, figuring out what kind of food staples they have is relatively easy - my problem is more the actual dishes.

    As for their religion, I don't think they have a lot of taboos as far as food is concerned.
     
  5. Lothgar
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    Lothgar Contributing Member

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    May I suggest watching Iron Chef. Many of their shows feature a back story on the cuisine that incorporates not only what it is, but its historical significance.

    One such featured piece was "Swallow's nest" or "Bird's nest" soup.

    Another episode explained that beef is very expensive in Japan due to its scarcity, so it is considered to be a luxury food.

    Yet another episode featured the Japanese Emperor crab, which are huge, with leg spans of up to 5 or 6 feet.

    You said this was a banquet for a fantasy game? What ever mythological or fantasy creatures that are rare/hard to catch should definitely make their way on the menu in one form or another.
     
  6. SashaMerideth
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    SashaMerideth Contributing Member

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    You are the storyteller. Make it up, and make it seem authentic. You're already telling a story that is kinda like this and kinda like that. Authenticity doesn't really matter.
     
  7. Anders Backlund
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    Anders Backlund Contributing Member

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    Thanks for the suggestions so far; I'll try looking into them.

    Keep them coming, though.

    I don't think you understand. If I could actually do that, I wouldn't have needed to post this thread in the first place.

    This isn't just me being lazy or lacking inspiration. This is something I'm genuinely, fundamentally bad at.
     

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