With the release date of "The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug" (Dec. 13, 2013) just around the corner, no doubt will many die-hard fans be thinking about having a Hobbit theme party. Fans of Tolkien's Middle Earth will want to replicate the high tea menu recipes pulled out by old Bilbo, which he served to the guests who crashed through his door.
To Read More Hobbit Articles, Including About Food Themes in the Hobbit Click the Links Below
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- The Hobbit trailer for TV released: Scenes introduce Smaug (the dragon)
- Food in The Hobbit: Fan plans to bring a Hobbit cookbook to life
What High Tea Menu Recipes Have to do with a Hobbit Theme Party
According to Recipe Wise, some question exists about the difference between high tea vs. low tea in "The Hobbit." The site maintains that:
A lot of people (if not most) have the wrong idea about what a Victorian (1800s) ‘high-tea’ is, when people say high-tea, they actually mean low-tea … it has been wrongly termed for nearly 70 years because to us ‘high’ sounds more upper class than ‘low’ … Yet high-tea was a working man’s hearty tea and supper after a long, hard day of manual labour. It was the combination of afternoon tea and the evening meal, of various dishes and cold cuts of meat and cheese, eaten on a high table, (usually the only table in the house) […]
What Bilbo started out hastily arranging when the bell rang was low-tea, for an important wizard, although to his dismay it ended up being a high-tea, for common ‘coal miners’ – this then is the underlying humour of the entire chapter, ‘An Unexpected Party’. Tolkien would have understood these strict conventions from his Victorian childhood, and he obviously (and thoroughly) enjoyed standing them on their head.
Foods for High Tea vs. Low Tea: The Hobbit Party Ideas
- Meat pie figures largely into the canon of "The Hobbit." Pork pie, with its flakey crust and pork and beef fillings is an excellent choice for this party. Serve it with a dark ale and a crust of bread for pure authenticity. You can also serve other kinds of meat casserole dishes. My favorites are the shepherd's pie or lamb stew in a bread bowl if you want to more closely replicate the crust of the meat pie at your Hobbit theme party.
- Scones are also great foods to serve as one of your low tea recipes. Alton Brown of the Food Network makes a mean scone that goes well with the raspberry jam that Bifur favors in the story.
- Lembas bread is the bread of life for the hobbits, Frodo and Sanwise as they trudge to Mordor. The Geeky Chef has come up with his version of the elven bread that is delish and would be a great addition at your Hobbit theme party.
- And finally, top off your meal with Bilbo's seed cake. This seed cake recipe has caraway seeds. However, those of you who love poppy seed muffins and other breads of this sort will probably find a place at the table. Just bring your finest poppy seed muffins and poppy seed cakes, a bit of whipped butter and of course, your jam. Bilbo will pull out a chair for you.
Food in Literature and Film: Middle Earth Cookbooks and Movies