With Christmas and New Year fast approaching, and rumours of a new comic-inspired recipe book on its way from a couple of well-known British creators, I thought downthetubes readers might be interested in my own one-off excursion into an arena made popular by sites like Geeks Who Eat and others – and find out about some other comics-inspired recipes and books.
Back in the 1980s, I was a member of the British Amateur Press Association, creating one of several zines circulated among a small network of comic fans, including the late comics commentator Tim Bateman, who sadly passed away earlier this year, Les Chester, Ross Cowin, Fiona Jerome (now at Deeper Media), comics journalist Frank Plowright (now at Slings and Arrows), artist Martin Hand, artist Nigel Kitching, Will Morgan of the brilliant 30th Century Comics, and the late, great Marvel comics artist and colourist Steve Whitaker and many others.
One of the “special” BAPA mailings was a recipe book, edited by Fiona Jerome, illustrated by Steve, and, probably, Nigel, too – I no longer seem to have a copy of myself.
It was crammed with great recipes, although the only one that sticks in my mind was from Fantasy Advertiser editor Martin Skidmore‘s, who’s contribution ran something like this:
“Get some money. Go to the fish and chip shop. Buy some fish and chips. Eat them.”
With thanks to Les Chester, who dug it out of his own archives, here’s a new scan my “Mum’s Proper Cornish pasty recipe” (with art by Steve) that was included, which I once gave to the staff at my local Birketts (a pie shop chain in Lancaster back then) in the hope that they’d take the hint and stop making such rubbish ones (they didn’t).
The recipe originally featured in a very old recipe book my Mum had as a child, that I foolishly loaned to someone and it was never returned, so I’m very grateful to Les for sending me a scan.
There are plenty of comics-inspired recipe books out there if you’re interested in finding any – and of course almost every long-standing brand worth its salt (sorry) has had a recipe book attached to it down the years, including Doctor Who.
DC Thomson has published a number of cook books and associated titles inspired by the Sunday Post strip “The Broons”, including Maw Broon’s Cooking with Bairns: Recipes and Basics to Help Kids back in 2010.
A Manga Cook Book was published by Manga University Culinary Institute back in 2007 for example, and in 2016, Robin Ha’s Cook Korean!: A Comic Book with Recipes got a lot of positive reception from foodies, for example, and Geeks Who Eat has its own section on its site devoted to comics-inspired recipes.
DC Comics has The Official DC Super Hero Cookbook, offering fifty recipes, and the Moomins have also gotten in on the act with The Moomin Cookbook, and who could not be tempted by Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Official Pizza Cookbook?
There’s also the inexpensive The Art of Cooking with Michelle, Chloe and Mia: A Comic Cookbook features recipes throughout illustrated in comic book format and brought to life by chefs Michelle, Chloe or Mia, as well as their trusted sous-chef – Oreo the hungry cat.
Meant for kids and parents alike, the book’s an attempt to discover new delicious staple dishes with this fully illustrated collection of recipes. Illustrated and written by Franco-Italian artist Liz Brizzi. The recipes have been carefully picked from her own roster of family dishes, including healthy meals and new spins on traditional dishes.
Oh, and for those of you more interested in drink than food, how about The Comic Book Story of Beer, outlining the world’s Favourite Beverage from 7000 BC to today’s Craft Brewing Revolution!
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there was also Maw Broon’s But an’ Ben spoon (an actual wooden spoon) if I recall correctly