Atan Irith/Gastronomy

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A Sampling of the Gastronomy of Atan Irith is an Official GemStone IV Document, and it is protected from editing.

A Sampling of the Gastronomy of Atan Irith

If there is such a thing as a universal truth, it may be that food and drink bring communities together everywhere. At the very least, this can be seen throughout Elanith, and it is definitely a primary foundation to life in Atan Irith. Erithi and Inyexat both find ceremony and tradition in sharing meals.

For example, the Inyexat enjoy tapitl, a meal style that involves the sharing of numerous small plates of a variety of dishes. Restaurants in Inyevexl specialize in tapitl, but in smaller areas without formal restaurants, friends and family gather together to have tapitl, often with numerous participants bringing their own dishes to contribute.

Food profiles vary between the two, but both cultures frequently share similarities, and their culinary proclivities influence one another greatly. In addition, both groups love finding unique cuisine when outside Atan Irith and bringing it home.

Below are but a handful of examples of unique cuisine one may find in Atan Irith.


Akateq or Korimata: Akateq are small, perfectly spherical balls of vibrant green lake algae found throughout cold water lakes in Atan Irith. In Inyexi, the name translates to "bouncy lake goblin," and in Erithi, korimata means "squishy water moss ball."

These edible balls of algae are formed by gentle wave action that slowly turns them, and colonies of korimata are cultivated in alpine lakes by the erithi. Inyexat have numerous tales and superstitions around akateq, including stories that small beings inhabit the algae. Their scholars believe this originated with the "bouncing" the balls do with any shift in the water. Inyexat rarely cook with it, but they will eat it when it is served.

Surath living in mountainous areas with alpine lakes first popularized the use of korimata in food dishes, and they continue to create unique dishes around it. One common method is to dry the balls, taking care to maintain the spherical shape, then serve it on a bed of translucent noodles so the bright green stands out. Edible florals are strewn about, and a light dusting of sea salt is the only spice.

Deep-fried balls of korimata are also popular, and again, care is taken to maintain the natural shape. This dish can be sweet or savory depending on the spices used. When it is removed from the oil, it is rolled in a coating complementary to the spices used in preparation (such as a cinnamon-sugar mixture for sweet korimata, for example).

By itself, korimata mostly tastes like fresh vegetation. When prepared properly, it maintains that light, fresh flavor while embracing its accompaniments fully.

Ciktat: A tangy cheese made from the milk of an ixacikta (a type of mountain rolton found in Atan Irith).

Niritanka: A signature coastal dish, niritanka is comprised of tender-cooked, crimson stalks of lunho coiled into a nest which holds bits of the day's fresh catch and fire-roasted lunho "grapes." Flavorings vary from town to town, but a bright sudachi and fish sauce is always popular.

Poctivl: Traditional Inyexat poctivl slow-simmers rolton meat in a large pot, infusing it with a citrus vinegar, chunky mushrooms, and ixica peppers. It is served by itself in a bowl or wrapped in a flatbread. Goat or pork are acceptable substitutions, but anything else renders it a dish other than poctivl.

Talaik: A traditional Inyexat flatbread, talaik is a versatile accompaniment to any meal. Some Inyexat chefs turn talaik creation into an artistic symphony by marrying it with spices, bits of meats, and cheeses, all baked right into the bread itself.

Vataki: With their predisposition to wandering, the Valaka enjoy dabbling in food that is suitable for their chosen lifestyle. Vataki is their whimsical nod to that, and a popular addition to erithi cuisine. Vataki is literally just meat, any meat, on a skewer that has been marinated then grilled. Vataki vendors often roam city streets with a mobile cart. Some Valaka joke that this is how they make everyone a wanderer -- by providing them with food they can eat while walking.

Fine dining establishments often pair vataki with a bed of complementarily spiced rice noodles and locally sourced grilled vegetables, removing the more mobile aspects while elevating the flavor profiles.

Yaol: Yaol is the erithi term for dumpling, and it is used loosely to describe anything wrapped in a specialized pastry then cooked (typically by steaming but pan-roasting is also popular. Boiling, braising, and roasting are less common but not unheard of, especially when the Inyexat adapt for their own uses). The word, when combined with other terms, often has the "l" dropped for aurally aesthetic purposes.

Types of Dumplings:

  • Gayao: Ground meat, vegetables, and spices fill a thick, rice flour wrapper that is pan-fried in a sesame-chile oil and served with a variety of dipping sauces.
  • Ai'yaol: Using a thin, slightly sweetened wrapper, ai'yaol are an erithi dessert specialty. The filling can be anything sweet, but sweetened red bean paste is believed to be the originator of the food.
  • Yaolxi: Also known as soup dumplings, eating these is an art form in and of itself. Filled with a flavorful broth and a small core of meat or vegetables, these steamed delights require care when releasing the piping hot interior onto one's tongue.
  • Dal'yao: Dal'yao, or moon dumplings, are a specialty dumpling shaped like a crescent moon. The specific shape is intricate and takes years of practice to perfect. Fillings vary, with dipping sauces and accompaniments changing to match. Beyond the shape, the primary difference between dal'yao and other dumplings is the fact it is deep-fried. Even the frying oil can change, with different flavors infused to elevate the dumpling's primary flavor profile. These are considered a specialty item and outside of fancy restaurants, dal'yao are usually made only for special occasions. Dal'yao are a prominent feature at the annual Festival of Lights.


Athsyla: Athsyla is a liqueur brewed from mereviolet blossoms, dreamgrass, and orcbane berries. See Flora of Atan Irith document for details.

Coffee: While scholars believe coffee is not native to Atan Irith, in the protected surroundings of Inyevexl, it flourishes in small pockets. Inyexat legend states that a handful of Inyexat on a travel quest visited an area where the plant was plentiful and managed to bring back live specimens. Inyexat coffee beans are robust, with naturally occurring hints of mushroom and ginlai (the small fields are dotted with them, impacting the soil's composition and thus the final bean).

Dreamwine: A wine typically used by Inyexat oneiromancers, dreamwine has a soporific effect, and is made of fermented ghostvine berries and crushed lotus petals, with other ingredients added at the discretion and preference of the diviner.

Ghostwine: A sweet wine of deep crimson made from ghostvine berries and aged in ghostwood barrels.

Jusora: Jusora is a distilled alcoholic beverage from Atan Irith. Native to the erithi, the Inyexat also enjoy it and will either trade for it or make their own. Clear and colorless, it is made from rice and often flavored with fruits and herbs. A wild rose tea-infused jusora has been popular in western Atan Irith for several years now, and citrus additions are always well-loved, including lemon blossom, blood orange, and grapefruit. For erithi, jusora is a beverage meant to be shared over a meal with family. Traditionally, the eldest will pour and drink the first drink. That completed, the bottle is passed freely afterwards about the table. In Eloth-Ra, there are establishments specializing solely in a wide variety of jusora and its pairing with various dumplings, and they are quite popular amongst university students.

Teas & Tisanes: Tea, while not unique to Atan Irith, has several unique varietals, mostly grown by the erithi, as with them, tea is as much an art form as painting. The Inyexat do enjoy tea but had let the plant grow wild until erithi began cultivating it.

The erithi brew healing plants into drinkable tisanes, while the Inyexat tend to eat the raw plant. See Flora of Atan Irith document for details.

Spices & Common Flavorings

Citrus: In the southern, temperate reaches of Atan Irith, a variety of hardy citruses grow, including yuzu and sudachi. These two fruits make it into a variety of sauces and flavorings, especially with the erithi. Erithi records indicate that once the initial shock of finding themselves on Atan Irith had passed, a handful of erithi farmers and botanists found carefully packed seeds from their forgotten homeland and began the cultivation of these instinctively familiar flora. Inyexat teachings support this, and they assisted in finding the best areas to grow the non-native plants with minimal impact on the local environment.

Ixica: Sometimes called star chile or star pepper, the ixica is neither chile nor pepper -- it is technically a berry off a type of citrus tree known as the prickly ash. With its unique tingling effect upon the tongue, ixica is believed to have powerful, mystical effects and is used frequently in Inyexat cooking. Erithi have adopted it as well, preferring the green ixica for its faintly floral notes, but also embracing the incarnadine ixica and its powerfully piquant culinary properties.

Nathaita Honey: Honey from the nathaita, a mountain bumblebee native to Atan Irith, is used liberally in both erithi and Inyexat cuisine. Also known as nathai, the honey has an herbaceous, faintly cucumber-like flavor as the bee's preferred flower is the vethajira comfrey.

Sukaju: This salty-citrusy sauce is attributed to the Surath Dai, with lemon being the most frequently used citrus. Recently however, some erithi chefs have been making variations with sudachi or yuzu with salt imported from Ta'Loenthra or Ta'Nalfein. For a richer umami flavor, dried fish flakes and kelp can be added.

Tobacco & Other Food-Adjacent Items

While not originally native to Atan Irith, tobacco has been cultivated for centuries in small amounts in the most southern spots of the continent by the Inyexat and the Yachan Dai. There is also a small, greenhouse-controlled cultivar grown just outside Eloth-Ra.

Curing takes on a variety of methods depending on the specific cultivar, and both Inyexat and erithi farmers alike have preferred and secret processes. Within the Inyexat, it is also quite common to mix the cured leaves with a few other herbs and plants, often with hallucinogenic offerings.

Shihaixa is a common blend created by the Yachan Dai. The name translates to Dream's Mist, and it is a light and citrusy tobacco.

Azouliq tobacco, known as Mystic's Repose in Common, is an Inyexat cultivar used by seers and mystics when seeking a respite from visions. Azouliq additives do not include significant mind-altering substances and rely instead on the strength of the leaves.

Resources & OOC Info

  • Created by GM Xynwen, 2023
  • In addition to specific dishes and drinks listed here, there are many edible plants and animals in Atan Irith. Some of these may be covered in the various other documents.