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The Gilmore Girls Cookbook That Could Have Been

Early in the summer of 2021 — before my devastating hand injuries that I’m only now slowly recovering from — I auditioned for one of the coolest gigs ever: to write the text for an officially licensed Gilmore Girls cookbook. What a dream! I’ve seriously never had so much fun doing a writing test in my life. I sadly did not get the job, rejection being par for the course as a professional writer. But since I loved creating these test blurbs, here you go. In Omnia Paratus!

Sookie’s Magic Risotto

Stars Hollow’s resident chef and prolific recipe creator Sookie St. James has no shortage of signature dishes, including her child-unfriendly mac’n’cheese with a jalapeño-chipotle sauce. But only one of her sometimes wacky creations comes with enchanted properties: Sookie’s Magic Risotto. This risotto was so darn good that when Sookie brought it to her mother on her actual deathbed, just one bite gave Mama St. James the will to live for three more years. Thanks to its legendary reputation, Sookie has one of her characteristic nervous breakdowns upon reading a review of her Magic Risotto that refers to it as merely “fine.” The nerve. Just make sure you don’t serve this one with a riesling, and as magical as it might be, please don’t expect it to change a D on an English paper.

Luke’s Santa Burger

Lorelei loves snow and Christmas. Luke not-so-secretly loves Lorelei, but can’t figure out how exactly to express it to her until she’s disinvited from her parents’ fancy Christmas party (along with her favorite apple tarts) and ends up at Luke’s Diner for a trusty burger. Except this time Luke presents Lorelei with a festive creation that forgoes his holiday season curmudgeonliness: a deconstructed hamburger shaped like Santa Claus. For occasions when you want to tell someone you love them without saying the actual words, we have Luke’s Santa Burger, which is as adorable as it is weird. This is a meal with a meaning far more important than how it might actually taste, especially if you follow it up with an even grander gesture like Luke did taking Lorelai to the hospital after Richard’s first heart attack.

Rory’s Pretzels from Around the World

One of the few things that gets Rory Gilmore to pull her head out of a book is food, and especially when she gets to college this passion often keeps her friends fed, too. However, like her mother, and very much unlike her Aunty Sookie, Rory doesn’t actually know how to cook so she often relies on her exceptional take-out ordering skills and excellent snack hoarding capabilities. Case in point: Rory’s spread of pretzels from all around the world during to counterpoint all the delicious fresh food Marty snagged from his catering job for their Marx Brothers movie marathon. Featuring San Francisco sourdough, German pumpernickel, chocolate-covered Swiss, and wasabi bites, this recipe combines Sookie’s extraordinary baking skills with Rory’s low maintenance concept to create a fun game night spread. The just-in-case pizza (and unrequited love) come separately.