Late to the Party

3 09 2012

“Wow, a food blog post about the Hunger Games.  How original.”  See how judgmental you can be?  Maybe you should come back later when you’re feeling better.

Some very good friends of ours just moved 3,000 miles away.  But before that they did something terrible.  They introduced me to the Hunger Games.  I’m not sure exactly why this trilogy of books has nailed me so completely, but I find myself going back every so often to reread certain passages (or the whole book).  What strikes me is that from the beginning this series is not so much about a fight to the death or action or violence, but survival.  From the very first page we find out that in the districts of Panem the main enemy is starvation.  Food is vitallly important in this story, and even in the arena Katniss notes “…how quickly the food disappears.”  So it’s no surprise that it’s inspired a cookbook and countless bloggers to take up the mantle and dedicate posts and recipes to the many meals described in detail in the book.  I may be late to this party but that’s what I do.

The very first food in The Hunger Games is so simple, yet it’s given star treatment.  A gift from her sister, Katniss receives a “…perfect little goat cheese wrapped in basil leaves.”  Spread across some special bakery bread, this breakfast is dubbed a feast.  It certainly made my mouth water to read it, so I thought it would make a perfect appetizer for our Hunger Games dinner (which you’ll find out about later).

I searched my favorite recipe site (Cooking Light) for “goat cheese basil” and this beauty showed up:

Fresh Herbed Heirloom Tomatoes and Goat Cheese Crostini

That’s quite a title, isn’t it?  For a recipe with no photo, just the list of ingredients made my mouth water.  But it’s not exactly what I was looking for so I made a slight adjustment.  And by slight adjustment I mean I put the bread on the bottom instead of the tomatoes.  Actually it was more than that, because we didn’t have lemons and I used limes.  But lime juice is very potent so I used half as much as they asked for; even so it was a bit limey for my taste but still very good.  We went to the bakery at our local butcher shop and got some Italian sun-dried tomato bread and toasted it up in the toaster oven.  On went the goat cheese, topped with the tomato slices and basil oil.

A feast indeed.  Karen mentioned that this could have been a meal in itself.  I agree.