My mom, sister, and I (and grandma, and aunt, and many others in the family) are huge fans of the 'Outlander' book series by Diana Gabaldon. I've written about them before (anticipation of the Starz show and the Outlander Fan Retreat in Seattle), and now the show has finally premiered! You can check out my thoughts on the first episode too, if you'd like!
I've read about people who do Game of Thrones viewing parties, and my family and I decided that viewing parties would be necessary for Outlander. The show officially aired last Saturday, August 9th, but Starz did a free multi-platform early viewing on Saturday, August 2nd. The show is actually in swing now, so I thought I would share what we've decided to do to enhance watching it!
Meat Pies (I know this is technically an Irish recipe, but it sounds too good to skip!)
For the early premiere I made bridies and stovies for dinner, and my mom made bread and my sister brought homemade jam for dessert. The stovies took about an hour, and the bridies about an hour and a half. I made the crust from scratch, which was a lot of extra work but totally worth it. It really felt like a party, and event, to have people over, talking and laughing, while making delicious themed food. It was a first, and I hope we do it for future episodes! Food is mentioned a lot in the books so it's easy to find relevant recipes online.
Whisky (something Scottish, preferrably!)
My mom and sister are big wine fans, but I'm more of a whisky person. While many of our party sat down with wine, I poured myself a nice glass of Bunnahabhain Scottish whisky, which I brought back with me from my trip to Scotland in the spring! If any of you want to try whisky because of Jamie and Claire, but you're unsure if you'll appreciate the taste, I recommened drinking it on the rocks and allowing the ice to melt a bit before sipping. It's a legitimate, and tasty, way to enjoy whisky! If all else fails, grab some Coke as a chaser ;)
Bagpipe music on youtube
We didn't have any music at our premiere party, but I would love to incoroporate traditional Scottish melodies into our cooking adventures. There are samplings of Bear McCreary's 'Outlander' tracks on youtube to enjoy as well.
Wear something tartan
Bring a sword!
It was about 80 degrees in the house from our roasting summer and the fact that I was cooking up a storm, but I still managed to don my Fraser taran (from Scotland!) and pose for a festive photo. Since it's a split season and we won't get the second 8 episodes until early next year, there's plenty of time to figure out warmer themed outfits for future parties!
Pre and Post Party:
Discussions of what we think the episode will cover based on the synopsis
Discussion everything we loved about the episode! Plan food for next week ;)
There was plenty of pre-episode chatter and preparation, especially since over half of our party hadn't read the books before! Afterward we talked a bit about the new additions (scenes that weren't in the books), and asked everyone what they thought. We also reminded them that pilots are slow, and that because it is an especially faithful rendition so far, they can expect things to pick up rather quickly.
We're definitely not alone in our enthusiasm. Outlander Kitchen has many great ideas for hosting viewing parties, (and tons of recipes!) if you need more ideas! I hope this post has encouraged you to throw wee food celebrations of your own to bring your favorite TV shows to the next level!