This is a story and a recipe I sent to a friend (Jodi Black) for her digital Gamer's Cook book. I thought you'd enjoy the story, a bit of Palladium history, and maybe even the pumpkin pie recipe. It is delish.
Looking forward to seeing most of you at the 2021 Palladium Open House. Details on the Palladium website.
For Jodi Black’s recipe book.
Twinkies, Mountain Dew and Battles
As any gamer can tell you, munchies and snack food are an essential part of most role-playing game experiences, particularly those that take place in your home. For years and years I ran a Saturday night Palladium Fantasy RPG with 8-12 friends. The game would start around 7:30 and last until one or two in the morning. It was a blast.
We’d have the usual array of soda pop, potato chips, pretzels, popcorn (we even bought a large popcorn machine to make mountains of popcorn as needed and enjoyed it for years), and sometimes other goodies like homemade brownies, cake, etc. My ex-wife, Maryann, was good cook and baker, so sometimes she would make dinner for everyone before the game, or a special desert for consumption during the game. Lots of fun and good eats.
Ah, but one of my favorite and fondest memories goes back to the Detroit Gaming Center (DGC) in downtown Detroit. I was a sprawling 10,000 square foot second floor location near the Wayne State University campus. Erick Wujcik, Matthew Balent, me and handful of others founded the DGC. It was incredible (if ahead of its time and unsustainable in the early 1980s). A couple hundred gamers arrived every weekend to show off their latest game acquisitions and to game the nights away. Me and my regular group of 26 players (yes, you read that correctly, 26 maniacs every Saturday, sometimes more – all collage kids and twenty-somethings), would game from 7:00 PM Saturday night till 7:00, 8:00 or 9:00 AM Sunday morning. These games and the DGC represent some of the greatest gaming experiences of my life, and made many lasting friendships.
Anyway, whenever the group was facing an especially powerful enemy or dangerous situation, I would arrive to find a package of Hostess Twinkies set atop of two cans of Mountain Dew waiting for me in my designated Game Master’s seat. If things looked really grim, there might be a package of Hostess cream-filled chocolate cupcakes too. “An offering to the Gaming Gods,” they told me with a grin. “You know, to have mercy on us tonight.”
In truth, they knew I was dirt poor and couldn’t afford a lot of junk food, so while I’m sure it was partly an offering to go easy on them (which never worked, by the way), it was mostly a kind gesture to show their appreciation for my time and energy. They’d also bring other goodies for everyone to share and if they thought I needed it, additional cans of Mountain Dew would magically appear next to my Game Master screen thought the night. I love those guys. Each and everyone of them. No wonder I wound up doing RPGs for a living. There is nothing else like the role-playing game experience.
– Kevin Siembieda, Founder and Owner of Palladium Books®, Inc., Writer, Artist, Game Designer and Role-Player
© 2019 Kevin Siembieda
Here is one of Kevin Siembieda’s favorite desert recipes for a Perfect Pumpkin Pie that is always silky and delicious.
Recipe makes 2 Pumpkin Pies
Oven preheated to 425 degrees.
1. Use frozen pie crust, but thaw out first. Take the two pie crusts out of the freeze the day before and put them in the refrigerator, so they’ll be unfrozen and ready the next day. (We recommend Marie Callender’s frozen pie crust, personally, but use whatever you like).
In the alternative, use any refrigerated pie crust (not frozen). Pillsbury’s ready to bake pied dough is easy to use and delicious, or make your own pie dough from scratch.
2. Combine: Sugar 1 ½ cups
Salt 1 teaspoon
Cinnamon 2 teaspoons
Ginger 2 teaspoons
3. Add large can of pumpkin
4. Add 4 beaten eggs
5. Use one can of evaporated milk and pour into a 4 cup measure.
6. Add water to evaporated milk to make up volume to 3 cups. Warm in microwave 5 minutes at half power and stir the 3 cups of warm milk in with the previous ingredients (spices, beaten eggs, pumpkin filling).
6. Pour into the two unbaked pie shells.
7. Cook in oven at a temperature 425 for 15 minutes
Turn down to 350 degrees and bake for an additional 30 minutes.
8. Remove, let it cool. It tastes best cooled or chilled in the fridge. Now chow down with or without whipped cream. Yum.