Biblyon the Great

This zine is dedicated to articles about the fantasy role-playing game Gods & Monsters, and other random musings.

Gods & Monsters Fantasy Role-Playing

Beyond here lie dragons

Fresh snacks for game night

Jerry Stratton, January 25, 2005

When I wrote the “review” of some of the best potato chips from a gaming perspective, I promised to write another article describing some healthier alternatives. Here are some of my favorite gaming snack recipes.


Popcorn is probably the easiest snack to make. It is quick and requires little skill except to shake it up once in a while. You should use a flavorful oil, such as butter or olive oil. Each has a distinctive, popcorn-friendly flavor. You need a large, deep pan, preferably aluminum or another light metal, a cover for the pan, popcorn, and oil and salt.

Place the large pan over high heat. Let the bottom of the pan warm. Then, lightly cover the bottom of the pan in olive oil or butter. Probably a quarter cup should be fine. Heat until very hot. Olive oil will just start smoking, butter will be boiling. Then, add a half cup of unpopped popcorn. Shake vigorously so that all popcorn is coated in oil. Cover, wait until the popcorn starts popping, and then shake the pan every five to ten seconds while the corn is popping.

When it stops popping, dump it into a large bowl, add salt, and eat.

You can, once you have the system down, start experimenting with any other spices you have lying around. If you have cheese, you can grate that over the popped corn. If you have a garlic press, press out some garlic over the popped corn while it is still in the pan, and shake it up before pouring the popped corn out.

But if you never do any experimentation, basic freshly popped corn in olive oil and salt is a treat on its own.


Salsas are versatile. You can use them with tortilla chips or with tortillas. Many are extremely tasty by the spoonful. They can also be spooned over other foods, such as meats and fish. They generally involve little more than chopping vegetables. The only “secret” is using fresh ingredients. Salsas are also often better if they can sit for a few hours before eating. This lets the flavors mix together.

Tomato salsa

Tomato salsa is one of the simplest salsas to make. All you need are several tomatoes, an onion, a lemon, a chili pepper, and some salt. Chop up the tomatoes, onion, and pepper, and mix together with the lemon’s juice. Salt to taste.

You can experiment by adding finely-chopped cilantro or other spices.

Black bean salsa

Probably my favorite salsa, black bean salsa is very easy to make and hard to beat for a quick fresh snack. You need:

  • 1 can crisp corn
  • 1 can black beans
  • 1/3 cup chopped onion
  • juice of 3 lemons
  • 1 tblsp olive oil
  • 1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped cilantro
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper

Mix everything together. Trader Joe’s has very good canned corn and canned black beans, but I’ve also made it with grocery-store-brand corn and beans. It’s always great.

Parsley and wheat salsa

This salsa, often known as tabouleh, is a Mediterranean-style salad. It works great as a salsa for tortillas as well.

  • 4 cups water
  • 3/4 cup bulgur wheat
  • 2 large tomatoes, diced
  • 1 whole carrot, shredded
  • 8 ounces canned corn
  • 2 cups fresh parsley, finely chopped
  • 1 whole lemon’s juice
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tblsps olive oil

Boil the water, pour it over the bulgur wheat, and then let it sit for half an hour to an hour. Drain the bulgur, then squeeze out the excess water, and mix everything together. This is often best served chilled.


Quesadillas are a great way to use up some of your salsa. All you really need, however, are a wide frying pan, flour tortillas, olive oil, and grated cheese. Later, you can experiment with adding tomatoes, onions, cooked chicken or beef, and spices.

Heat the olive oil in the pan. Sprinkle grated cheese on a flour tortilla and fold the tortilla over. Fry on each side for a minute or two, until the tortilla is golden brown.

You can also salt the finished product if you desire, or ladle salsa over it.


Trader Joe’s and other stores sell pre-made pizza dough. You roll out the dough, put your vegetables or sauces on it, some grated cheese, and then cook it. In less than the time it takes for pizza delivery you've got fresh, completely customized pizza ready to eat. Ask everyone to bring their own favorite topping, and then go wild on two or three different kinds of pizza.

In thirty minutes, you'll have a great pizza of your own design.

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