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    Canonfire :: View topic - Foods of the Flanaess?
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    Foods of the Flanaess?
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    Tue Nov 02, 2021 7:28 pm  
    Foods of the Flanaess?

    Hey all,

    We started this discussion in the Discord but I wanted to continue it here so that we can eventually build an article from it. The idea is to set a rough idea of the different foods of the Flanaess.

    Step 1 is to get a rough idea of each human culture's food style. Then we can begin to assign a blended menu for each country based on their human culture split.

    So here is my first pass.

    A) The Oeridians are a horsemen and warrior culture. Heavy armor. Usually needs a lot of meat for energy. So I would make them a steak and potatoes type culture.

    B) The Suel are more France / Italy in their food. High flavor, fancy tastes, not so much meat eaters. Lots of seafood (based on their multiple water gods as providers).

    C) The Bakluni, I would avoid the stererotype of arabic meals for them. Probably go Asian / Eastern Russian cuisine due to their climate.

    D) The Flan would be the spice people. They would love herbs and spices,
    seeing as they are more druidic/nature lovers. They would know best how to make nature part of their meals - a lot of vegetables, fruits, spices, etc.
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    Richard Di Ioia (aka Longetalos)
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    Tue Nov 02, 2021 7:33 pm  

    Copying over my Discord start/replies:
    would a caprese salad be Velunese? Or Dyvers? Both? More Sheldomar Valley? Assumes tomatoes native to Flanaess and don’t need to be brought back from Amedio or Hepmonaland…
    Hmmmm. And would a seafood paella be Keoish. Or Nyrondel? Solnor Compact ….?
    Sea Princes gumbo!!!!
    Urnst goulash. And Furyondy stroganoff ….
    I like the approach. Bakluni borscht … in the Gnatmarsh I am thinking the Marsh folk are Flan and there are plenty of herbs and spices in the marsh so they’d have a very spicy diet. Plus tasty game like eels, squab etc.
    Also comparing climates Keoland and Nyrond along with Old Aerdi seem mainly Mediterranean in climate, or North African. So can see that applying.
    (A) above could also be some of the Korean or northern Chinese foods. Heavy for cold weather. Hearty.
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    Thu Nov 04, 2021 10:46 am  

    We can probably discern a lot of the cuisine of different human cultures by examining their real-life counterparts:

    -The Flan would make good use of pemmican and bannock as traveling foods, much as real-life First Nations people have done. Real life pemmican was often seasoned with fruits like blueberries and saskatoons, and Flanaess pemmican could include yarpick nuts or kara fruits too. As far as drinks, spruce needle tea was used as much for medicine as for general consumption. These traveling foods would also be popular with other human cultures as well as demihumans and fairy folk they trade with.

    -The Baklunish would not only drink a lot of coffee and tea, but also have elaborate ceremonies about it. Meat and dairy are at least as likely to come from goats or lambs as they are cattle. Foods like musakhan and falafels seem to be common in the real-life Arab world, so they'd be popular among the Baklunish. Coffee and tea would also be one of the main Baklunish exports to the Flanaess itself.

    -The Oeridians, being blunt and straightforward as their real-life British and German counterparts are often stereotyped as, would favor a lot of grains and meats more than fruits or vegetables. They might also be the most regular consumers of chocolate imported from Hepmonaland. Spices and sauces are also very popular.

    -The Suel would, like their real-life Scandinavian counterparts, probably enjoy a lot of fish as Longetalos says. Fruits and vegetables would not be common in the Barbarian lands, but they would be more common in southern Suel lands than among the Oeridians. High flavor and fancy tastes are, again as Longetalos says, more popular than in more 'salt of the oerth' Oeridian cultures.


    Last edited by CruelSummerLord on Tue Nov 09, 2021 7:47 am; edited 1 time in total
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    Fri Nov 05, 2021 11:09 am  

    CruelSummerLord wrote:
    We can probably discern a lot of the cuisine of different human cultures by examining their real-life cultures...

    -The Suel would, like their real-life Scandinavian counterparts, probably enjoy a lot of fish as Longetalos says. Fruits and vegetables would not be common in the Barbarian lands, but they would be more common in southern Suel lands than among the Oeridians. High flavor and fancy tastes are, again as Longetalos says, more popular than in more 'salt of the oerth' Oeridian cultures.


    -I wouldn't put all Suel in the Scandanavian category, just Cold barbarians. The Scarlet brotherhood, Ulekers/Keoish, and Urnst/Greyhawkers would be different.

    Gem of the Flanaess had something about the common foods of Greyhawk. Fate of Istus' section on Junre mentioned the New World dietary vibe, and Gygax's Gord books, particularly the first one, had a lot of gastronomic stuff.
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    Sat Nov 06, 2021 2:30 am  

    Funny how we can end up with different interpretations of the closest real world analogs for the peoples of the Flanaess.

    I picture the Suel as Germanic, with the northern barbarians basically Norsemen.

    I picture the Oeridians as more Greco-Roman/Latin in temperament and culture than British or German.

    And I think of "Flan" as a catchall category imposed by the invaders of yore to distinguish indigenous inhabitants from Suloise and Oeridian settlers. I don't think all Flannae would necessarily resemble indigenous North Americans (assuming Duke Owen of Geoff is Flan, his name suggests a more Celtic - or Pictish? - analog).

    Different views on different peoples evidently complicates how we might assign culinary preferences among them. It's worth pointing out that it isn't 100% clear whether pre-contact North American indigenous peoples made their own bannock-like breads, or whether it was a post-contact Scottish import that indigenous peoples made into their own. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bannock_(food)

    But as this is a fictional world, we have a great deal of flexibility with regards to the construction of ethnicities and cultures, food preferences, and the origins of particular foods.

    I look forward to seeing everyone's suggestions, as this is a subject I have always wanted to see fleshed out.

    EDIT: it would be also interesting to identify differences between the types of meals members of the different social strata in a given country are likely to enjoy. Bowl of brown, anyone?
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    Sat Nov 06, 2021 10:11 pm  

    TwiceBorn wrote:


    And I think of "Flan" as a catchall category imposed by the invaders of yore to distinguish indigenous inhabitants from Suloise and Oeridian settlers. I don't think all Flannae would necessarily resemble indigenous North Americans (assuming Duke Owen of Geoff is Flan, his name suggests a more Celtic - or Pictish? - analog).

    EDIT: it would be also interesting to identify differences between the types of meals members of the different social strata in a given country are likely to enjoy. Bowl of brown, anyone?


    Regarding names, I never put much stock in trying to create 'ethincally authentic'-sounding names for different cultures in part because of the mingling that's happened since the Great Migrations (just look at the number of black and brown people in the Americas who have European-derived first names), partly because so many iconic Greyhawk names are based on puns rather than etymology, and partly because...well, I frankly suck at it.

    The only exception are with Flan names that are based off natural phenomena similar to many real-life First Nations names and are easier for me to come up with than a collection of random syllables that is somehow 'cultural'. That's why my stories have Flan characters with names like Ehyeh Thunderhorse and Revafour Greystar.

    Regarding bannock, it has an important cultural role for Native peoples in Canada and I wanted to reproduce that here.
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    Mon Nov 08, 2021 1:43 am  

    I think the problem with using real world food analogies is that it's always dependent on our individual take regarding each ethnicity's cultural reference we use. We can see from a lot of other threads that our views vary greatly!

    Noel Graham's article "Return to Falcon's Bazaar" in Dragon #271 details a bunch of Flanaess themed foods & drinks. I've listed a few below;

    North Province:
    Cockles in laminari - brined cockles packed with laminari (a purple kelp that is also tasty)

    Frost Barbarians:
    Djekul - a creamy cheese from Djekul popular in COunty of Urnst

    Furyondy:
    Goldenseed Nuts - a salty seed harvested in Gold County

    Nutherwood:
    Karispa - a peppery marsh cress

    Lordship of the Isle:
    Pilac - a long brown grain can be eaten as a gruel or used as a grain in soups or as stuffing.

    Gnarley/Vesve:
    Villosa - a meaty tuber actively planted since the Greyhawk Wars. Can also be used to make an orange dye.


    An easy way to add a uniquely Flanaess vibe to food is to use the various fruits and nuts described in the Guide;

    Galda-fruit - salty & astringent to the palate but refreshing & nutritious, the seeds are high in protein. The trees only grow in central Flanaess.

    Kara-fruit - when ripe chewy & somewhat sweet, it provides a staple int he diet of many people. The trees only grow in the southern Flanaess.

    Uskfruit - size of a large grapefruit with three or four lobes, bright blue & aromatic. Loved by many creatures. The trees only grow in the central Flanaess.

    Yarpick "Nuts" - large as plums, very whoesome & nourishing. The meat is eaten roasted or ground intomeal. The trees only grow in the central Flanaess.

    According to the guide the following fruits & nuts would be available;

    Central Flanaess - apples, chestnuts, maples (syrup), mulberries, pears, plums, walnuts, elderflowers

    Southern Flanaess - apricots, figs, grapefruits, lemons, limes, olives, oranges, peaches, pine nuts
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    Mon Nov 08, 2021 3:26 pm  

    CruelSummerLordJared wrote:
    Regarding names, I never put much stock in trying to create 'ethincally authentic'-sounding names for different cultures in part because of the mingling that's happened since the Great Migrations (just look at the number of black and brown people in the Americas who have European-derived first names), partly because so many iconic Greyhawk names are based on puns rather than etymology, and partly because...well, I frankly suck at it.

    The only exception are with Flan names that are based off natural phenomena similar to many real-life First Nations names and are easier for me to come up with than a collection of random syllables that is somehow 'cultural'. That's why my stories have Flan characters with names like Ehyeh Thunderhorse and Revafour Greystar.

    Regarding bannock, it has an important cultural role for Native peoples in Canada and I wanted to reproduce that here.


    Yeah, that's fair enough. And good point about 'ethnically authentic-sounding names." I sometimes forget that it's been more than 1,000 years since the Great Migrations, and that there's been a lot of time for cultural assimilation to occur and naming practices to change within that time frame. Just as not all 'modern day' Flannae would still follow the reportedly nomadic ways of their ancestors.


    Last edited by TwiceBorn on Mon Nov 08, 2021 3:29 pm; edited 3 times in total
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    Mon Nov 08, 2021 3:26 pm  

    Wolfling wrote:
    I think the problem with using real world food analogies is that it's always dependent on our individual take regarding each ethnicity's cultural reference we use. We can see from a lot of other threads that our views vary greatly!

    Noel Graham's article "Return to Falcon's Bazaar" in Dragon #271 details a bunch of Flanaess themed foods & drinks. I've listed a few below;



    Nice find!
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    Tue Nov 09, 2021 7:46 am  

    TwiceBorn wrote:


    Yeah, that's fair enough. And good point about 'ethnically authentic-sounding names." I sometimes forget that it's been more than 1,000 years since the Great Migrations, and that there's been a lot of time for cultural assimilation to occur and naming practices to change within that time frame. Just as not all 'modern day' Flannae would still follow the reportedly nomadic ways of their ancestors.


    When I tried creating a 'Mesoamerican' sounding name for Ma'non'go, I ended up with something that probably sounds more southern African than anything else. Maybe it's the result of cultural intermingling with the Touv? Neutral My attempts at naming his 'false friends'-who Ma'non'go will reveal more about in the next novel-weren't any more successful.

    Besides the references to bannock and pemmican, I also tried to describe the menu at a high society gala the party attends in For Crown Or Country based on some of what I found in the LGG. South Province is the agricultural breadbasket of the Great Kingdom, so it contributed a lot of the fruits and vegetables. North Province does a lot more herding than agriculture, so it contributed the meats. Hepmonaland trade contributed the chocolates. The Sea Barons contributed seafood for obvious reasons.
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    Tue Nov 09, 2021 11:17 am  

    A short thread on Dragonsfoot:

    https://www.dragonsfoot.org/forums/viewtopic.php?f=33&t=73446&sid=9be4bc77d7b1829ced79deb50a0e90e2
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    Fri Nov 19, 2021 7:29 pm  

    I'd look at it as a technique issue more than anything else.

    Which ethnic group is most likely to have figured out that beating eggs and then continuing to beat them changes their properties for baking? Not the Oeridians who don't have the patience for that. I'd say the Suel who gave the chore of beating eggs to a kitchen drudge and forgot to tell him to stop and then figured out that STUFF could be done with this. So, the Suel have souffles and meranges.

    Who's big on dried meat and the proper technique for making beef jerky? The Suel are aghast at the thought of it, so I'd go with the Flan or Baklunish.

    As a general rule, I'd go: practical technique - Oeridians, esoteric technique - Suel, requires a lot of time - elves, requires less effort - Flan, can be made while stoned - halflings.
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    Sat Nov 20, 2021 8:15 pm  

    At one time there were several articles on the web about food and drinks of the Flanness which I had downloaded. Unfortunately I have had a few data losses of the years but a few of them were by Iquando/Erik Mona. So thosr might be in the Best of AOL atchive here on Canonfire.
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