I was thrilled to hear last year that CINDER was on GoodReads list for books most frequently chosen for book clubs, and it’s delighted me this year to hear how many book clubs continued on with Scarlet when it came out! I’ve even been invited to attend a couple discussions locally, which is so much fun – not only because it’s always a delight to hang out with fellow book lovers, but also because you book clubbers tend to always have such good food at your meetings!
So I thought – if so many book clubs are hosting get-togethers to discuss Cinder & Scarlet, why not suggest some edibles that tie in with the books?
If you’re discussing Cinder, try…
“Yes,” Kai said, lifting a shrimp wonton between his chopsticks. “It falls on the ninth full moon of each year.” (p. 267)
Shrimp wontons are delicious, fairly easy to make, and very shareable. If they’re good enough for Kai to serve his royal Lunar guests, they’re good enough for your book club, right? (In fact, my friends and I made this cooking video last year showing you how to make shrimp wontons, in case you need a little extra direction!)
Shoppers mulled about, swinging bags against their hips and snacking on tea-boiled eggs. (p. 290)
Celebrate 126 years of world peace by sampling some of the street food from the peace festival. Tea-boiled eggs are a common street food in the Commonwealth (and modern-day China), and they look exceptionally easy to make. Plus, they’re beautiful!
She spotted Sacha in her booth, behind the glass case of sweet breads and pork buns, gawking at her outstretched hands. (p. 15)
Chang Sacha, the market baker, is well-known for her delectable pastries. Whether you opt for Chinese delicacies filled with bean paste or barbecued pork (my personal favorite, yum!!) or more westernized specialties like honey buns (which Chang Sacha also carried), you’ll be in for a treat.
When you’re discussing Scarlet, try…
Pushing through the crowd, she deposited the sandwich on the table. “You had le croque monsieur?” (p. 13)
The traditional French sandwich that Scarlet brings Wolf during their first meeting happens to be delicious, filling, and so basic (it’s really just a grilled ham and cheese sandwich). Cut it into triangles to make finger foods, or fancy it up with some béchamel sauce (as Wolf’s has). Or be an overachiever by adding a fried egg on top, which is called a croque madame. Is your mouth watering yet?
Digging through the cabinet, Scarlet cobbled together a can of olives and a jar of marinated artichoke hearts. “Here, we’ll have an antipasto.”
There’s hardly a more simple and pretty appetizer than a nice antipasto plate. Start with olives and artichoke hearts, add some rustic bread and tomato bruschetta (because tomatoes are easily the most memorable food item of the book…), finish off with some salami or prosciutto and you’re done!
She’d even missed Scarlet’s eighteenth birthday, though she’d bought the ingredients for Scarlet’s favorite lemon cake the week before. (p. 9)
Scarlet never does get her favorite cake for her birthday, but it would make a delightful finish for your delightful feast. Oui?