On the 21st of that month, wherever in the world one was at 11 a.m., it was time to belly up to a table, or settle on a park bench, a fallen log or picnic blanket, fluff up a napkin and (in pairs or by the hundreds) engage in a second round of before-noon noshing. Somehow I missed it.
In its respect, however, it was a very nice way to honour the 75th anniversary of J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit.
But short, any good Halfling would have to agree, of the true spirit and appetite of Hobbitdom.
Where, oh where, after Second Breakfast, was Elevensies?
And where Afternoon Tea?
Luncheon? Dinner? Supper?!
A Hobbit could starve, wondering where all the other meals have gone.
Could, that is, if the Second Breakfasters were left to run the foodservice. The same Second Breakfasters, many of whom probably skipped lunch later on, and then enjoyed a light supper with dressing on the side.
If you’re like me, though, your stomach is growling, and you’ve felt starved for some time of a middle meal. And starved, too, of Middle Earth, ever since the credits rolled on The Return of the King.
This December, however, comes with the perfect opportunity to peel some extra taters. To roast a chicken and some other roastable meats. Stuff sausage. Pour some beer and wine. Simmer soups and stews. Crisp up slices of bacon. Bake bread and pies and cakes. And when your table is groaning with the abundance of it all, then celebrate, in the same holiday season as Christmas and Hannukah, the release of Peter Jackson and Weta’s first of three The Hobbit films!
Yes, I know I’m a nerd.
No, I do not have costume feet.
It has, however, been a terrible long count of years since The Return of the King completed The Lord of the Rings trilogy. And too many years altogether since Chefhusband and I last set aside an entire day for the re-watching of the three films, in their extended editions, while preparing seven Hobbit meals.
Clearly it’s time to rekindle a favourite tradition.
So, while we wait for The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey to arrive in theatres later this month, we’re making a menu, polishing up disk one of Fellowship of the Ring, and sitting down to feed our own inner Hobbits.
As if we needed an excuse.
Chefhusband’s Hobbit Day Menu
• Breakfast: Brioche Sticky Buns
• Second Breakfast: Prairie Berry Clafoutis
• Elevensies: BLT Bread Salad (below)
• Luncheon: Baked Potato Soup
• Afternoon Tea: London Fog and Crumb Cake
• Dinner: Ultimate Egg Sandwich
• Supper: Sausage Bubbat
NOTE: To find all of the other Hobbit Day menu recipes, visit nicefatgurdie.wordpress.com.
BLT Bread Salad
4 slices bacon, crumbled
3 slices day-old bread, cubed (or equivalent artisan bread, cubed or sliced into thin fingers, as shown)
2 medium tomatoes
2 cups salad greens
2 cloves garlic, peeled and thinly sliced
2 Tbs light mayonnaise
1 1/2 tsp Dijon mustard
dash hot sauce
3 Tbs milk
flaked kosher salt/freshly ground pepper
Fry bacon until crisp, then remove with tongs to a paper towel. Add sliced garlic to bacon fat and distribute evenly around pan. Add bread and fry until golden on one side. Flip and fry on other (or all) side. Remove from pan.
Roughly chop the tomatoes. Place in a large salad bowl and squeeze lightly to release some of the juices.
Whisk together dressing ingredients. Pour over tomatoes and stir. Adjust seasoning. Just before serving, toss in bread.
Arrange salad greens on two large plates. Top with the tomato/bread mixture. Sprinkle with crumbled bacon. Season lightly with salt and pepper.