A somewhat unconventional Turkey Day spread
I don’t think I’m alone in saying that as far as its origins go, Thanksgiving is by far the worst holiday of the latter part of the year. In light of this, I do my best to forget how the celebration got its start, and instead focus more on how much I love the food that I could eat year-round if I wanted, but only choose to eat on this holiday because it feels more special. Video games are known to have some of the most delectable-looking food that I’ll sadly never get to eat, but I can at least compile a list of all the virtual Thanksgiving dishes I wish I could down this year on my food holiday.
7. Fried Chicken – I Love You, Colonel Sanders!
I learned recently that KFC is a big holiday tradition in Japan, so I’m gonna go ahead and say that’s fair game for the sake of this patchwork list. Now as far as how good this chicken looks in the game, I don’t think they could have made it look more tantalizing if they tried. It’s also presented to us in the format of a dating sim, which somehow makes it look even more dreamy and amazing. Honestly, screw a turkey this year, this game that was created solely for the purpose of selling me chicken has done an excellent job of making me want said chicken. And those mashed potatoes? Say no more.
6. Pumpkin Pie – The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild
The desserts aren’t something to make super often in this game, because they don’t have a ton of utility and their ingredients are often valuable and hard to come by. Did I make them anyway simply because they look amazing and I have a sweet tooth? Absolutely, yes. It feels like a special little treat to give Link a cake after he narrowly escaped death after running through a field of Guardians. It feels only fair. All of the desserts in Breath of the Wild look amazing, but I’m gonna have to go with the pumpkin pie on this one for obvious reasons. Plus, it’ll give me an armor buff for when those Thanksgiving tensions start rising, am I right?
5. Stupendous Stew – Super Mario Odyssey
When I was playing the Cookatiel boss fight in the Luncheon Kingdom, I swear I could barely focus — all I could think about was how good that stew looked. I love a good cream-based soup, and those big chunks of potatoes, carrots, corn, and zucchini looked amazing to me. The only thing it’s missing is a little bit of protein to give it that rich flavor, but I assume that’s what the Cookatiel is for. This is one of those recipes that gets replicated online a lot, and for good reason. I might just have to try and make my own Stupendous Stew for my own Thanksgiving celebration.
4. Butterscotch Cinnamon Pie – Undertale
Okay, I know the circumstances surrounding this pie are… questionable, but you cannot tell me that it isn’t your dream to wake up from a nap and have the most incredible, warm, ooey-gooey butterscotch cinnamon pie just sitting out for you. It sounds cozy, and it’s exactly what I would want if I found myself in some mysterious underworld that was full of monsters. To be honest, neither butterscotch or cinnamon are usually something I’ll go out of my way to eat, but in this case, I just have to make an exception.
3. Stuffing – Stardew Valley
Stuffing is a classic Thanksgiving staple, and one of my personal favorites, so I couldn’t very well leave it out. It’s simple, sure, and the low-res pixel art doesn’t do it many favors, but when you take into account that it’s going to be made with fresh ingredients right off of your farm, you know it’s gonna be delicious. The recipe is simple — bread, cranberries, and hazelnut — and while that doesn’t quite stand out as the most involved stuffing recipe I’ve ever received, the thought of it somehow still makes my mouth water. Plus, you get a +2 defense bonus. What is it with all these Thanksgiving foods giving me defense buffs?
2. Sweet Potatoes – Cooking Mama 2: Dinner With Friends
Let’s be honest, I could have included pretty much any dish from any of the Cooking Mama games, but I chose Dinner With Friends because it was the one I played growing up. Now these sweet potatoes are certainly one of the more simple dishes you can make, but that’s part of what makes them look so tasty. You’re really taking your time to make sure they’re slow-roasted to perfection, and that you get that nice sweet glaze on top. This is a much different way to prepare sweet potatoes than I was used to growing up, but I honestly think I would prefer it. Mama knows best, which means these bad boys have got to be incredible.
1. Ambrosia – Hades
Alright, I’ll admit that this one is a bit of a wildcard, but I mean, come on. Never has a video game food or drink drawn me in with its siren song like the Ambrosia from Hades. In real life, ambrosia is a horrifying monstrosity of a dessert that mixes fruit, marshmallows, and sour cream. Who does that? No, no, no, I want whatever sweet, golden liquid is in those fancy glass bottles. I once had this amazing drink made of fresh-squeezed orange and grapefruit juices, and it was probably the closest thing I’ll ever get in this earthly realm, goddamn it was so good. The fact that there is no real-world equivalent to this truly breaks my heart.
So, what video game foods would you want to add to your Thanksgiving plate? What real-life foods do you look forward to during the holiday season?