Culinary practices in crime

9 Mar

Whodunnits – set in other times and places – are a favourite of mine, certainly because of the crime stories but also because of the small window into another culture and into another era, courtesy of the authors. Two in particular I would mention here: Firstly, the Erast Fandorin Series by Boris Akunin (Grigory Chkhartishvili), whose tongue-in-cheek treatment of his tsarist-Russian hero adds to my reading delight. Foodscapes in the form of banquets and cafes feature as backdrops for the unfolding stories.

fandorin_klein

Secondly, the Judge Dee Series by Robert van Gulik, set in China during the Tang Dynasty (618-907 A.D.). Here culinary habits add to the temporal setting. The detective escapades are based on the historical magistrate Di Renjie (or: Ti Jen-chieh). van Gulik, a Dutch diplomat to Asia, first translated an 18th century Chinese detective novel Dee Goong An on the legendary Tang statesman, before starting off on his successful series.

JD_composite_klein

One of the recurring customs in the Judge Dee books is the serving of tea kept warm in a tea basket to the judge. I always imagine Judge Dee puzzling over the aspects of the crimes while sipping hot tea kept warm in a travelling tea set such as the following examples.

936746_kleintea 5_kleinteaset_kleinUnbenannt_kleinTea Set 2_klein

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3 Responses to “Culinary practices in crime”

  1. YunitaGena March 10, 2013 at 02:19 #

    wow, nice and you really use your imagination and search it. nice 🙂

    • simplycarola March 10, 2013 at 13:25 #

      Hi Yuna of The Little Orange World 🙂
      Thank you! Glad you liked it; hope to see more of you in the Interwebs.

      • YunitaGena March 11, 2013 at 07:01 #

        Hi the simplycarola,

        you are very welcome 🙂

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