Food and video games go hand-in-hand. From the Pork chops and Roast Turkey found in Castlevania to Skyrim’s delicious Sweet Roll, video games have showcased and created some of the most appealing and tantalizing culinary creations.
I’m sure we’ve all found ourselves playing a game while hastily making our way through some Doritos or a equally healthy Pizza, wishing you could tuck in to Sonic’s chilli-dog or some Yoshi cookies However, thanks to Gourmet Gaming and it’s creator, Daniella Zelli, that has become a reality.
The 24 year old who lives in Edinburgh started Gourmet Gaming in 2011 and since amassed over 30,000 Tumblr followers, told me about what inspired her to start it:
“Gourmet Gaming happened after I’d thrown several play-through parties for Deadly Premonition, one of my favourite games of all time. I made some of the infamous Sinner’s Sandwiches to eat while we played, and everyone really enjoyed it.”
The infamous sandwich contains an odd mix of, white bread, turkey, jam and cereal, certainly sounds like something a 5 year old would make for lunch if they could, but apparently it’s quite nice.
It wasn’t just the strange sandwich that pushed Daniella, but a reason that most people end up starting a blog, band or YouTube channel, unemployment.
“What really pushed me to try was that I was horribly unemployed at the time, I felt that if I dedicated my time and energy to something that maybe something would come of it.My friends and family were very supportive, and no one else was doing it at the time, so I thought why not.”
Since Dani’s first creation, which was of course the cake from Portal, she has created 91 mouthwatering concoctions from the world of video games. So which was the tastiest piece that Gourmet Gaming has created?
“I like to think all the food is very tasty – If I don’t like to eat it then there’s no point in sharing it with everyone! My favourites are probably the Costume Quest Pizza Sundae and the Guild Wars 2 Omnomberry Cake; I was so impressed, and they tasted incredible.”
With such a catalogue of talented creations and recipes you would expect Miss Zelli to have been taught by Michael Roux or Cooking Momma. However that isn’t the case at all…
“My mother and my boyfriend had to cook all my meals for a number of years. I then decided that was ridiculous so I just started cooking, and I find that’s the best way to learn. My progress is evident between the early and later posts on GG; with cooking you learn tricks purely through trial and error, and often making a dish over and over. Kind of like trying to beat a level or get a new high score – only repetition really helps!”
Practice clearly makes perfect, but could these creations help put a stop to the stereotypes and negative connotations that have scorched the tag?
“I’m not sure why gamers have the overweight, lazy stereotype – I don’t know one gamer like this out of all my friends. For Gourmet Gaming I make an effort to cook everything from scratch, to cater to allergies and use high-quality, organic ingredients where possible. Food is a pleasure, as are video games, and it seemed totally natural to combine these things.”
“If games companies approached me to help them integrate food into their marketing, I’d be delighted to help. I think it would be a huge step forward from giving gamers vouchers for microwave burgers and crisps – something I feel a large proportion of the gaming community aren’t really interested in. I hope Gourmet Gaming encourages people to cook their own food more, and if I do that then I’ll feel like I’ve accomplished something.”
Personally, I would rather be able to pop to my local supermarket and find a can of Finkton’s Baked Beans or a tin of Yeto’s Soup or pick up their ingredients than nip to MacDonald’s or Burger King.
To see all of Dani’s creations make you way to Gourmet Gaming-