Fictitious Dishes: Food From Famous Literature

Most fiction stories have some form of main character, a protagonist to remember long after the last page. Then there are stories where another type of character remains in our minds, reminding us like a small hunger of the story which came before: that character is food. From the famous porridge in Oliver Twist’s bowl to the cheese sandwich on toast with a chocolate milkshake from Catcher in the Rye, certain meals stand out while lending meaning and insight into those omnipresent and hungry protagonists.

Now, Dinah Fried, a graphic designer pursuing her MFA at Rhode Island School of Design, has produced a series of photographs capturing the very essence of these famous literary meals. Titled Fictitious Dishes, the series puts before us the place settings from 5 different novels: the formerly mentioned Oliver Twist and Catcher in the Rye; along with The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, and Moby Dick. Each scene is perfectly recreated as if it sprung from the cinema screen or the very pages of the book itself. Perhaps because of the perspective they are captured from, you really get a sense that you are there, about to partake in this meal… appetizing or not.

Interested in more tasty treats from Dinah Fried? Head over to here website at


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  1. Harriet Swift

    Dinah Fried’s meals from novels is a wonderful idea. The framing, lighting and technical aspects are well done but the time and place aura is off. Except for “The Girl With etc” all the images are recognizable as recreations from 2012 — or thereabouts. Most egregious is the condiments holder with Holden Caulfield’s grilled cheese with sugar packets and pink and blue packets of sugar substitutes. In the 1950s there was only sugar, no substitutes. And the sugar would have been in a glass sugar dispenser. Hope Ms. Fried will keep working on this project, doing more research on the time frames and refining the details. “The Great Gatsby” and “The Maltese Falcon” have some interesting meals that would make interesting photographs.

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