Food in comic panels and morality tales

The deviation is the culinary comic in the form of the comic cookbook with characters, stories and the history of cuisines.

Published: 21st November 2021 05:00 AM  |   Last Updated: 20th November 2021 09:45 PM   |  A+A-

Ramen noodles

Ramen noodles (Photo| Special Arrangement)

Food is not only a taste bud act but also a visual treat. However, the boilerplate cookbook is unimaginative: a little bit of explanatory text, instructions, ingredients and the recipe. Gastronomic narration is only for restaurant reviewers, which is also quite a groaner.

The deviation is the culinary comic in the form of the comic cookbook with characters, stories and the history of cuisines. Here are the best food comics on the pantry shelves. Hungry Ghosts by Anthony Bourdain, Joel Rose, Alberto Ponticelli, Irene Koh, and Paul Pope Horrible food can taste great with the great Bourdain's horror recipes.

This comic book, created by the late gastronomic doyen and well-known novelist Joel Rose, is the story of a Russian oligarch who has commandeered a group of international chefs to play the samurai game of 100 Candles, where each chef tells a terrifying ghost story or demonic tale around food, as the reader gasps to know who will survive and which recipe will save whom.

It is based on the Japanese cult game of Hyakumonogatari Kaidankai, and Bourdain had cooked most of the recipes in the book and added some new recipes. It is an ode to Japanese culture and its celebration of cuisine. Another Bourdain comic classic is Get Jiro! about an former yakuza-turned-sushi-chef who lands between a fight between two warring restaurants: a satirical take on the gourmet versus local debate.

Let's Make Ramen! by Hugh Amano and Sarah Becan A comic book to teach you how to make real ramen is here. It tells the history of the wildly popular Japanese noodle dish and over 40 interesting recipes for a variety of broths, making ramen noodles from scratch, and toppings, and their specific proteins. Also check out their Let’s Make Dumplings!, another comic cookbook.

Oishinbo by Tetsu Kariya and Akira Hanasaki This is corporate cuisine at its most imaginative. A journalist, Yamaoka Shir, is asked by his employer to select the ingredients for an 'Ultimate Meal' to celebrate the company's centennial.

The cookbook author Tetsu Kariya and artist Akira Hanasaki have created a massive monument to gastronomy. It has 35 volumes in its original form. It is a clever and gorgeous way to teach the best of Japanese cooking to novices and pros alike.

Cooking Comics!: Simple Skills, Fantastic Food by Lauren Thomson and Tsukuru Anderson This comic book teaches the fundamentals of cooking - how to transform yourself from a rookie to a bona fide maestro (at least one hopes). It instructs you on methods that can be applied to different dishes, shortcuts, and modifications, whether it be a quick dinner or a party.

Seconds by Bryan Lee O'Malley

One of the most imaginative food books ever, Seconds is not exactly a cookbook but a food book morality tale. It features young chef Katie who is contemplating setting up a second restaurant after the success of her first.

But her life gets messy with her boyfriend, an affair on the side and a mishap at the place. Then mysterious girl appears to Katie in the middle of the night to give her the following instructions - write down the mistake you made, eat a mushroom, go to sleep and wake up refreshed. The message is that everyone deserves a second chance.


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