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Cuisine in the World of Avatar

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Meal
Cuisine in the World of Avatar
General information
Type

Food and drinks

Examples
  • Noodles
  • Tea
  • Fish
Cuisine in the World of Avatar can be divided into four major categories which follow the division of the four nations; however, regional variation in cuisine can be found, particularly in the Earth Kingdom.

Air Nomads

Fruit pie

Fruit pies were a notable Air Nomad treat.

Being that the Air Nomad civilization was mainly wiped out at the beginning of the Hundred Year War, little information is known about the culinary tastes of the Air Nomads. However, the most defining characteristic in their cuisine was a strict vegetarianism.[1] Aside from vegetarian dishes, Air Nomads are known for their sweets, such as fruit pies and custard tarts.[2]

Cooking style

Little information is known about the cooking style of the Air Nomads except that they are known to be skilled at baking foods.[3]

Common ingredients

  • Apple — Used for pies and feeding sky bison.[4]
  • Banana — Used for juices.[5]
  • Flour — Used in baking fruit pies, for example.
  • Moon peach — Eaten whole.[3]
  • Nuts — Eaten for a snack.
  • Onion — Used for juices.[5]

Dishes

  • Dumplings — Presumably filled with vegetables.
  • Egg custard tart — Tart with an egg custard center.
  • Fruit pie — Baked pastries filled with minced fruit.[3]
  • Moon cakes — A cake.
  • Noodles — Mixed with vegetables.
  • Rice — Eaten as a side dish.

Water Tribe

Sea prunes

Stewed sea prunes are a Water Tribe delicacy.

Because of the bare land on which they live, the Water Tribes draw most of their food sources from the ocean. Cuisine basically consists of sea crab, sea prunes, sea squid, seaweed, and seal jerky.[2]

Cooking style

The cooking style of the Water Tribe is mainly boiling or stewing, due to the limited resources they have available to make more elaborate dishes. Also, as they live in a colder part of the world, it is more practical to have food that warms the body like stews and less practical to have salads. They also make jerky out of seal meat.

Common ingredients

  • Fish — Usually steamed or boiled.[6]
  • Giant fly — Hunted as food by tribesmen of the Foggy Swamp Tribe.[7]
  • Giant sea crab — A delicacy considered by many to be the most popular and sought-after food in the Northern Sea.[8]
  • Octopus/Squid — Used in stews.[8]
  • Possum chicken — Hunted as food by tribesmen of the Foggy Swamp Tribe.[7]
  • Sea prune — Boiled into sea prune stew, similar in taste to ocean kumquats.[9]
  • Seal — Used to make blubbered seal jerky.
  • Seaweed — Made into noodles,[2] stew, sprinkles, soup, bread, and cookies.[8]
  • Whale — Usually boiled.

Dishes

  • Arctic hen — A delectable Southern Water Tribe dish.[7]
  • Blubbered seal jerky — Jerky made from seal meat and blubber.[3]
  • Five-flavor soup — Traditional Southern Water Tribe dinner.[10]
  • Kale cookies — Cookies made out of kale, they are sometimes served at meetings.[11]
  • Pickled fish — A meal that lives up to its name; eaten in the Northern Water Tribe.
  • Sea prune stew — Sea prunes stewed in water and with other common ingredients.[9]
  • Seaweed noodles — A typical Southern Water Tribe dish.[2]
  • Seaweed stew — A Northern Water Tribe dish, it can be made with substitute ingredients in the Forgetful Valley.[12]
  • Tentacle soup — A Northern Water Tribe dish, consisting of squid/octopus tentacles and noodles.

Others

  • Freeze-dried cucumberquats — Used by adventurers in the Southern Water Tribe as an emergency food source should they get stranded in the arctic.[13]

Earth Kingdom

Earth Kingdom cuisine

The Earth Kingdom offers a variety of dishes, some of which were served to Zuko and Iroh while they visited Song's home.

People in the Earth Kingdom eat a variety of grown foods such as fruits, nuts, vegetables, rice, and tea. There is a large regional variation on the types of food eaten, ranging from simpler village fare to the elaborate roasts, cakes, etc. found in Ba Sing Se. Meat and poultry from wild game and farms are also common.[2]

Cooking style

A huge variety of cooking methods are utilized in the Earth Kingdom. Earth Kingdom people live in a huge country with great variation in climate and therefore food. Boiling is used for rice and many vegetables. Fish is usually steamed, and meats are usually roasted. Baking is also extensively used to make cakes, buns, and tarts. In the metal city of Zaofu, they serve a fusion cuisine of gourmet and vegetarian entrees, most which use specially prepared ingredients such as kale.

Common ingredients

  • Cabbage — Usually boiled, stir-fried or left uncooked and used as garnish.[14]
  • Chicken — Usually roasted.
  • Chili — Used as a flavoring.
  • Duck — Usually roasted.
  • Egg — Used in a variety of ways.
  • Fish — Usually steamed and applied with garnish.
  • Flour — Used to make noodles, cakes, pastries, and buns.
  • Jennamite — A fast growing rock candy that can be eaten as a snack. It is also known as Creeping Crystal.[15]
  • Lettuce — Usually boiled, stir-fried, or left uncooked and used as garnish.
  • Mango — Used to make a beverage of the same name.
  • Platypus bear egg — Used in a variety of ways.
  • Pork — Usually roasted.
  • Rice — A staple food, usually boiled.
  • Soy — Used to make tofu.
  • Wheat — A staple food, usually made into flour.

Fruits

Dishes

  • Bean curd puffs — Made from cottage cheese and beans.[17]
  • Beetle-worm soup — Dish prepared and served by Grandma Lokai.[18]
  • Bison steak — Cooked meat from a flying bison. It is a rare dish that is consumed by citizens of the Upper Ring of Ba Sing Se.[19]
  • Cakes — Mixed flour, sugar, egg, and butter; baked.
  • Crab puffs — Crab meat made into puffs.
  • Deep-fried pickled radishes — These are never seen, only mentioned by Katara in "Sokka, The Avatar".
  • Egg custard tart — Tart with an egg custard center.[1]
  • Fried dough — Flour dough that is fried.
  • Ginger-infused pea tendril — An aromatic vegetarian dish often served in many gourmet meals.[20]
  • Hibiscus root salad — A vegetarian side dish made from shredded hibiscus root.[20]
  • Jook — Rice congee.[5]
  • Noodle soup — Noodles and various vegetables and meats cooked in soup.
  • Pan-fried noodles[21]
  • Pau buns
  • Roast duck — A duck that is seasoned with herbs and spices, roasted, and applied with a special sauce.[22][23]
  • Seared wild Kyoshi elephant koi — A gourmet meal prepared by pan searing fresh elephant koi. Often served with complementary side dishes, such as hibiscus root salad.[20]
  • Soup — Made from a variety of meats and vegetables; usually thin.
  • Tofu — Tofu made into smaller puffs and fried.[21]
  • Unfried dough — Regular flour dough, cut into the shape of Avatar Aang. Exclusive dish of Chin Village.[24]
  • Vegetable wrap — A vegetarian course often served raw and made out of leafy produce, such as kale.[25]

Beverages

  • Cactus juice — Found in the Si Wong Desert, this liquid can be consumed straight from the cactus, though has strong hallucinogenic properties.[26]
  • Kalenutsco — Fresh drink made from a mixture of kale, walnuts, and coconut water.[27]
  • Mango — Made from mangoes and other fruits mixed with water in an ice bowl.[28]
  • Tea — Made from a variety of tea leaves in hot water.[29]

Others

  • Mint — A small piece of candy.[30]

Fire Nation

Fire Nation food

The Fire Nation also carries a wide variety of food offerings, much like the Earth Kingdom.

The defining characteristic of Fire Nation cuisine is its spicy nature, closely resembling Szechuan cuisine. Fire Nation citizens even put spices into many of their delicacies and treats. Like the Earth Kingdom, the Fire Nation uses a wide variety of grains, meats, and vegetables in cooking.

Cooking style

As with the Earth Kingdom, there are many cooking methods. Regional variation is smaller, but the available types of food are still extensive. Boiling is used for rice and many vegetables. Fish is usually steamed, and meats roasted. Baking is also extensively used to make cakes, buns, and tarts. The Fire Nation also has many snack foods, commonly in the form of roasted bite-sized pieces with a large amount of spices. Chili and other spices are added to nearly all savory food.

Common ingredients

  • Cabbage — Usually boiled, stir-fried, or left uncooked and used as garnish.
  • Chili — Used extensively for almost any type of dish; found stir fried, boiled, and in salads.
  • Clams — Usually boiled.[31]
  • Crab — Presumably fried.
  • Duck — Usually roasted.[23][32]
  • Fish — Usually steamed with garnish applied.
  • Flour — Made from wheat into buns and dumplings.
  • Komodo chicken — Presumably roasted. In 100 AG, Zuko took a box of komodo chicken to his uncle, Iroh, during his imprisonment in the Capital City Prison.[33][34]
  • Komodo rhino — Made into sausages.[10]
  • Rice — A staple food, usually boiled.
  • Sea slug — Usually smoked.
  • Squid — Presumably fried.
  • Wheat — A staple food, made into flour.

Fruits and vegetables

Dishes

  • Buns and bread — Made from flour.
  • Cookies
  • Dumplings — Flour filled with meat and vegetables, usually boiled.
  • Fire gummies — Snack food.[36]
  • Flaming fire flakes — Snack food; spicy flakes that are roasted.[4][36][37][38]
  • Fruit tart — Dessert. It can be served with rose petals on top.
  • Ice cream — Frozen cream, eaten in waffle cones.[39]
  • Komodo sausage — Sausage made from komodo rhino meat.[10]
  • Loco moco – Traditional dish of Hira'a.[40]
  • Mochi — Rice cake.[41]
  • Noodles[42]
  • Noodle soup — Soup with noodles and sea foods.
  • Roast duck — Duck that is seasoned, roasted and cut into bite-sized pieces.[23][32]
  • Sea soup — Soup with seafood and eggs.
  • Sizzle-crisps — Snack food, probably made from meat.[4]
  • Smoked sea slug — Common dish enjoyed by middle and upper class.[43]
  • Rice[42]
  • Superspicy soufflé — Specialty of Kirachu Island.[44]
  • Tart pie — Pie with fruit tart on top.

Beverages

  • Juice — A cold drink with a slice of fruit; a favorite of Piandao.
  • Tea — Made from a variety of leaves in hot water. There are many varieties. The type drunk in the homeland is Fire Nation spice tea, mainly by commoners, but nobles may have it as well. They also enjoy jasmine and ginseng tea, the latter of which Iroh says is his favorite.[29]
  • Watermelon juice — Consumed on especially hot days or at the beach.[45]

United Republic of Nations

A majority of food comes imported from the other nations, and the United Republic offers mostly commercially prepared foods such as instant noodles and snack cakes.

Bolin eating seaweed noodles

Consumers in Republic City are able to enjoy foods from around the world, including seaweed noodles.

Dishes

Beverages

  • Lychee juice — Made from lychee nuts.[49]

Trivia

  • Most dishes, specifically those of the Earth Kingdom and Fire Nation, are heavily influenced by Asian cuisine, particularly that of China. Many of them are actual dishes. Also, chopsticks are the primary eating utensils worldwide.[29]
  • The Air Nomads are the only entirely vegetarian nation.

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 O'Bryan, John (writer) & Volpe, Giancarlo (director). (May 20, 2005). "The Great Divide". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 1. Episode 11. Nickelodeon.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 Welcome to Republic City. Nickelodeon (May 4, 2012). Retrieved on May 4, 2012.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 DiMartino, Michael Dante (writer) & MacMullan, Lauren (director). (February 25, 2005). "The Southern Air Temple". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 1. Episode 3. Nickelodeon.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 Ehasz, Elizabeth Welch (writer) & Volpe, Giancarlo (director). (October 13, 2006). "Appa's Lost Days". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 2. Episode 16. Nickelodeon.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 DiMartino, Michael Dante, Konietzko, Bryan (writers) & Volpe, Giancarlo (director). (December 1, 2006). "The Guru". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 2. Episode 19. Nickelodeon.
  6. Commonly eaten by Water Tribe members like Sokka or Katara throughout Avatar: The Last Airbender.
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 Hedrick, Tim (writer) & Volpe, Giancarlo (director). (April 14, 2006). "The Swamp". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 2. Episode 4. Nickelodeon.
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 The Lost Scrolls: Water, page twenty-eight of The Lost Scrolls Collection.
  9. 9.0 9.1 Wilcox, Ian (writer) & Volpe, Giancarlo (director). (October 7, 2005). "Bato of the Water Tribe". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 1. Episode 15. Nickelodeon.
  10. 10.0 10.1 10.2 10.3 10.4 Hedrick, Tim (writer) & Dos Santos, Joaquim (director). (November 9, 2007). "The Puppetmaster". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 3. Episode 8. Nickelodeon.
  11. DiMartino, Michael Dante (writer) & Heck, Colin (director). (September 20, 2013). "Civil Wars, Part 1". The Legend of Korra. Season 1. Episode 15. Nickelodeon.
  12. DiMartino, Michael Dante; Konietzko, Bryan; Yang, Gene (w), Sasaki of Gurihiru (p, i), Kawano of Gurihiru (col), Heisler, Michael; Comicraft (let). The Search Part 2 (July 10, 2013), Dark Horse Comics.
  13. Hamilton, Joshua (writer) & Graham, Ian (director). (September 13, 2013). "The Southern Lights". The Legend of Korra. Season 1. Episode 14. Nickelodeon.
  14. Shown by the cabbage merchant throughout Avatar: The Last Airbender.
  15. O'Bryan, John (writer) & Lioi, Anthony (director). (March 18, 2005). "The King of Omashu". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 1. Episode 5. Nickelodeon.
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  18. Pittarese, Frank (w), Ridge, Justin (a), Dzioba, Wes; Kim, Hye-Jung; Sno Cone Studios (col), Comicraft (let). "Divided We Fall" (Serialized January 23 – August 14, 2007, by Book Two: Earth DVD volumes), Nickelodeon.
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  29. 29.0 29.1 29.2 Throughout Avatar: The Last Airbender, mostly by Iroh.
  30. Nick Magazine presents "Going Home Again".
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  34. Escape from the Spirit World — Avatar Roku Online Comic Book
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  47. DiMartino, Michael Dante, Konietzko, Bryan (writers) & Dos Santos, Joaquim, Ryu, Ki Hyun (directors). (May 12, 2012). "And the Winner Is...". The Legend of Korra. Season 1. Episode 6. Nickelodeon.
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See also

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