Sunday, February 24, 2013

Pre-Oscars: Best Food Scenes in Movies

Pretty straightforward, I compiled a list of movies wherein I could almost taste the food on the screen or where I felt my stomach growling. Comment with your favorite food scene below :D

1. Ratatouille - My little brother, who normally doesn't eat vegetables, asked Ma to cook Ratatouille for him after we watched it in the cinema. She obliged, wanting to try it out too, but my brother bailed at the last second (to which I said, "More for me!"). Whenever I feel uninspired to cook/bake but have to, I remember this film and encourage myself with the quote "Anyone can cook!"

Here's a recipe for Ratatouille that's based on the movie:

Ratatouille from

2. Julie & Julia - coincidentally named after me (lol). I have to be honest though, I enjoyed the Julia Child scenes more, she had always been a charming lady (the real Julia Child) and her declarations of love for French food had me wanting to buy a plane ticket so I can have the real thing. Bon appétit!


Ooh, I just found a site where they posted recipes of all the food that was featured in the movie!

Raspberry Lemon Cream Cake - Yum!
Coincidentally, I have a friend who used to post about his adventures in following recipes by Julia Child in his blog The Culinary Chemist. He still regularly posts on his Facebook account of pictures of his latest projects, but I really wish he would put them up on his site! (Side note: I think Chemists make great cooks and bakers because we're so used to following instructions and having to be precise in our measurements, or else our lab experiments might fail haha. Right?)

3. Romantics Anonymous - I already mentioned it in my previous blog post HERE but I'll say it again - I love this simple, quirky and quaint film about a chocolate maker and the owner of a small, dying chocolate factory, the actors played their characters so well and the French language is beautiful to listen to. Not to mention all the chocolate that they make and get to eat on the set. Mmm :) Here's a clip of them trying out a new batch of chocolates:


4. Spirited Away - Studio Ghibli films have this uncanny ability to make me want to live in their universe and wish that the food on screen would magically appear in front of me. The characters always seem to eat or cook them with such gusto it literally makes me salivate. A couple of examples:

Both .gif files are from

Here's a more detailed writeup about the food in Spirited Away, I highly enjoyed reading it:

While looking for images and stills from the movie, I came across CinemaAndSpice, a youtube channel by two lovely ladies who prepare food that is based on or inspired by a particular movie/show. Check out the video they made for Spirited Away:

If it wasn't for my cold, I would go out to eat at our nearby fave Japanese place, Yoyogi Sushi

Additionally, here are informative articles on How to Eat Sushi, Sushi Etiquette and a really detailed post on Sushi Etiquette here.
(a couple of pointers: eat small slivers of ginger in between sushi pieces to cleanse your palate; it is ok to eat big pieces in two bites; dip the fish side in soy sauce so that the rice won't fall apart, or you can use a ginger sliver to "paint" soy sauce on your sushi).

5. Marie Antoinette - a historical figure known for her love of being excessive and frivolous (she was a young queen after all), the 2006 Sofia Coppola movie had a no-holds-barred approach to portraying her as such, as you can see in this scene:

Not included are the various scenes where they dine in opulence, luckily I found some stills online:

I wonder how long it took to set up each of these scenes, it seemed like every tiny detail was well-thought out and add to the overall look without being overbearing. I've always been fascinated with period films and all the work that goes into making them as authentic as possible (unlike the film "Love and Other Drugs," where in the first scene we're made to believe that it's 1996 yet Jake Gylenhaal's character is selling huge flat screen TVs that were not available until 2003. My suspension of disbelief went *poof*).

(Interestingly, one of the oft-quoted phrases, "Qu'ils mangent de la brioche" or "Let them eat cake!" has been wrongly attributed to M. Antoinette; there are no historical records nor evidence of her having said that.)

6. Harry Potter - Ron constantly eating is one of the books' and movies' running jokes, and someone was clever enough to make a montage of all his eating scenes in the movie.

Hermione: Will you stop eating, your best friend is missing!

If you recall, one of the first bonding moments between Harry and Ron was when Harry bought all those treats in the train and shared them with Ron :)

I was fortunate enough to have been to the Harry Potter theme park in Orlando, Florida with my family last year, and my inner 12-year-old self was giddy with delight when I was *finally* able to try butterbeer (an easy, non-alcoholic recipe is available here)! It was sweet and even better than how I imagined it. Get the frozen version, if you have the chance, and get it in a mug :)

Holding all the giddiness in to look like a respectable 26 year-old
So strong was the influence of food in the books (and subsequently, the movies) that they just had to include Honeydukes and its famous treats (chocolate frogs, Bertie Bott's Every Flavor Beans, etc.) in the theme park. I had to clamp my wallet shut and say no to my inner child plenty of times, it was easy to get carried away and buy a bit of everything. One of my biggest regrets though, is that I didn't get to try a bottle of Pumpkin Juice (which is actually a mix of apple, apricot and pumpkin puree).

Images courtesy of
Here's an article that includes all the food items mentioned in the books: HP Food

Bonus: a video on how to make Harry's favorite dessert, Treacle Tart!

And an alternate recipe: Harry Potter's Favorite Treacle Tart
Image taken from here
7. Hook - The scene where Robin Williams' Peter Pan looks weirdly at the Lost Boys for not having actual food, only to find out that he can make them appear by using his imagination. Raise your hands if you watched this as a kid and could not help licking your lips once Peter sees food in front of him :D

8. It Takes Two - one of the famous Olsen twins' movies (who have proven themselves in the field of fashion through their clothing label The Row) where I was introduced to Sloppy Joes. The scene itself starts at 1:25

I usually try not to eat red meat (the only times I do are during Filipino gatherings and when my friends go to Honey Pig in Ellicott City), but this scene makes me want to haha. If I ever want to try it out, I need to go back to this entry and cook for it myself :)

Honorable Mentions:

1. Simply Irresistible starring Sarah Michelle Gellar and a magical crab (who, with a wave of his claw, is able to transmit Sarah's character's feelings into the food she makes, thus making her restaurant a hit).

2. No Reservations starring the beautiful combo of Aaron Eckhart and Catherine Zera-Jones, this movie will make you hungry and fall in love at the same time. Cross my heart.

3. Because I Said So - for the various cakes and of course, the chocolate soufflé that Mandy Moore's character loves to make.

4. Mousehunt - where I hated the mouse for the entire movie, up until the final scene of course :) Here's the scene where the brothers, inspired by the mouse, convert their father's string factory into a string cheese factory. I love cheese!

5. The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe - two words: Turkish Delight. I finally got to try an upscale version at Zaytinya, a Greek restaurant in DC, and it was wonderful having to actually taste it after years of wondering how it would be like on my taste buds when I first read about it in high school (me and my friends stashed the books in various parts of the library when we had the chance, we only had one set available and we fought over it haha). Here's the scene where the White Witch (played by the great actress Tilda Swinton) plies Edmund with Turkish Delight while trying to convince him to become her "king" and lead his siblings to her:

Bekir Effendi, the reputed inventor of Turkish Delight, first set up his sweet shop in Istanbul in 1776. It is still open to this day :) 
Reimagined Turkish Delight from Zaytinya, courtesy of
6. Spanglish - a subpar Adam Sandler movie, its redeeming factor is its creation of The World's Greatest Sandwich, which is actually a glorified BLT. A lot of people have posted about this and did find that it was the tastiest sandwich they've ever had.

An actual still from the movie found here
7. The Lord of the Rings trilogy - below is an advert for Lembas, a very nutritious Elvish bread stored in leaves.

And if you ever wanted to make it for yourself and see if it will sustain your long journey to Mordor (or the office), here's a Lembas recipe that's worth a try, courtesy of Geeky Chef:

Legolas, gimme some Lembas!
Image taken from Geeky Chef
Image from here
8. Matilda- based on one of Roald Dahl's beloved books, the main character Matilda's smart, can-do attitude and love for books captured my heart when I was a kid (I had been teased as being a bookworm, which did not really hurt me because it was true! I would walk up and down flights of stairs with a book shoved in front of my face, and read in the dark with the help of a flashlight until one of my parents would wake up and scold me about intentionally ruining my eyes), but one of the things I loved best was when Bruce defiantly eats a gigantic chocolate cake in front of Miss Trunchbull and the entire school.

I never knew until now that Roald Dahl also published a recipe book for food that he mentioned in his books, called Roald Dahl's Revolting Recipes, and it includes the recipe for the aforementioned chocolate cake. Someone tried it and said it was the best cake ever, and judging from the pictures she's telling the truth! Behold:

Image taken from

Link to the recipe: The Matilda Cake

Whew, that was a long but worthwhile post! I hope I didn't make you THAT hungry. Remember folks, eat to live, not live to eat!

<3 lots plus some treacle tarts,

1 comment:

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