Hogwart's Faculty Meeting Reports
by Pika-So, Diana, Fluffy, Rouge

When the teachers of Hogwart's convene for the pre-term faculty meeting, they use that opportunity to report on their activities since the previous school year had ended. The reports often take on the form of field notebooks filled with drawings and images of the focus of their interest, and/or a dish from the locales or situations they encountered. The recipes are detailed in Hogwart's Mid-Summer Pot Luck Faculty Meeting set piece in Hut Cuisine. The field doodles and situation descriptions, are both there and here. It's a lot of drawings to enjoy!

Professor Sprout | Minerva McGonagall | Gilderoy Lockhart | Remus Lupin | Madame Hooch | Albus Dumbledore | Severus Snape | Filius Flitwick | Sybil Trelawny | Alistor Moody | Irma Pince | Professor Quirrell | Poppy Pomfrey | Igor Karkaroff | Olympe Maxime| Armando Dippet

Sesame Plant, botanical sketch, Professor Sprout
The professor visited Florida on one summer sabbatical, and collected and recorded many plants. These were not uncommon flora, but the way the Floridians grew them intrigued her -- using hydroponics, for example; massive orchards wedged on highway medians. Given the Americans' obsession with technology and novelty, she was surprised to see sesame plants growing in a field, in the traditional manner. She had never seen a plant live, with both seed and flower blooms on it like this one.

Cake Making, Instant-Style, Minerva McGonagall
Even those versant in spells and magic cannot make something from nothing. As was noted by the witch in "Bedknobs and Broomsticks," money is something extremely difficult to create; time is another. Professor McGonagall has little of either to spare, so she opts to use pre-made ingredients in creating her signature trifle-like dessert offering; creating or procuring the ingredients from "scratch" would take too long, even with magic. It's an impressive dessert -- no need to let anyone know that it's not 100% "yours"!

Pylecapoeda Gigantia, var. dentitia (sic), Gilderoy Lockhart
Professor Lockhart encountered this giant clam in the South Pacific seas, where molluscs of many kinds can grow to humungous proportions. In his haste to record it's existance, Lockhart not only misspelled "Pelecypoda" but gave the wrong genus/species designation -- it's correctly "Tridacna gigas," which is classified in the phylum Mollusca, class Pelecypoda or bivalvia, order Eulamellibranchia, family Tridacnidae. He claims this heretofore unknown sub-species is an offshoot of the more common "bear paw clam," which has a heavy, coarsely fluted and toothed shell. The two shells close slowly and the creature normally feeds by filtration and on symbiotic algae that grows on their mantles. In contrast, this "variation dentitia" lies in wait like an overgrown Venus Flytrap, and snaps shut in a trice, trapping fish or men in it's hungry maw. Unfortunately, Lockhard said he killed -- and ate -- the only discovered sample of this new creature (heeding his responsibility to protect others from it's voracious dangers), so his claim cannot be either proved or disproved. This encounter is detailed in his best-selling book, "Dangerous Clams: the Case for Bivalve Euthenasia."

Monkshood, also known as Wolfsbane, Remus Lupin
Remus Lupin could not help that he was born a werewolf, and that for a quarter of his time, he is a dangerous, feral creature with the need to feed on living flesh. Even in the wizarding community, the ferocity of this transformation is feared, and werewolves are keenly avoided, at any cost. Even Lupin admits this is so -- he is not himself during the full moon, and he is not to be trusted. As a student, he was locked away in a remote house to rage in solitude, doing harm only to himself. As a teacher, his former classmate Severus Snape fed him a potion that kept him docile and in a sort of hibernating state for the week of the full moon. A major component of the potion was wolfsbane, which acts as catnip does for cats -- werewolves are drawn to the poisonous plant. In small concentrations, it served to sedate them; in larger amounts, it could kill them or worse, trap them in wolf form. To make sure the safe concentration was never exceeded, Snape used wolfsbane pollen in honey, created by bees he kept on the grounds just for this purpose.

Hot, Roquefort-Scented Clouds, Madame Hooch
In her position as physical education and flight skills instructor, Madame Hooch is, of course, interested in flight safety. But during the summer, she lets her general interest in the wind lead her to places all over the world where wind is said to have other properties. For instance, she is intrigued by the "Santa Annas" in California, when the wind reverses direction in winter, causing temperature inversions and hot temperatures. Or the constantly sweeping trade winds of Tasmania, which create "pure air" environments. Or the very famous "El Niño" and "La Niña" phenomena, due to wind changes. She is also interested in local air differences -- the aforementioned Los Angeles smog, for instance, or the extreme year-round humidity of Japan. But the most beguiling was the scents of the air in southern France, which smelled of the Mediterranean Sea -- and bleu cheese!

Makings of a Fruit Salad, Guaranteed to Disappear, Albus Dumbledore
Headmaster Professor Dumbledore is way beyond any need to impress anyone, and has simplified many aspects of his long life. He is still a formidable dark wizard hunter and warrior, and in addition to being headmaster, he is also on call to consult with the Ministry of Magic on every little thing. It's no wonder he prefers this simpler, refreshing fruit salad as typical fare!

Fizzy, Fresh Ginger Beer, Severus Snape
When making carbonated beverages the old-fashioned way with a yeasty brew under pressure, one runs the risk of the corks popping out. Even worse, the bottle itself might explode if the cork is put on too firmly! If the corks popped and you had your wits about you, you could scramble to catch the drops as they flew threw the air. Thus, the quaffing of ginger beer tended to be an outdoors-only activity. Leave it to the Professor of Potions to find a way to create ginger beer from fresh ingredients -- meaning you could have it any time you wanted it, rather than waiting a week or more -- but to keep it from exploding! His secret ingredient? Bottled soda water, of course!

Dreamtime Fairy Cakes Go Walkabout, Filius Flitwick
The prevailing landscape in Australia is very much like Mars; Hogwart's professor of levitation studies should know -- he's been to both places.

Gatekeeper for the Fountain of Youth, Sybil Trelawny
An oracle -- in the traditional form of a sphinx -- is said to live in the Fountain of Youth. In exchange for it's life- and energy-restoring properties, the sphinx is said to take your memories -- so that you have no past and no future. They serve a nice restorative drink at the spa the houses the fountain, but it has no Fountain water in it. As proof, the sphinx drinks the concoction, too, and has retained her memories for many millennia!

Extreme Diligence: Grow Your Own Food and Cook It, Alistor Moody
An auror by profession, Moody is now paranoid and jumpy at all things. Still, even growing his own mushrooms, herbs, tomatoes, and carrying his own cooking implements didn't protect him from Barty Crouch ...

Broken Hearts, Irma Pince
The Hogawart's librarian entered into a passionate affair, but it ended badly. She refused to see the Lothario anymore, but he kept sending owls, pleading for an audience, so he could explain himself. For some, time is not a healer of all wounds.

Very Icy Gazpacho, Professor Quirrell
Lord Voldemort was forced to live as a parasite on Quirrell. By rights, the dark lord should have died long ago, but he was powerful enough -- and desired immortality enough -- to keep alive, even as a mere evil mist. As for Quirrell, he played the part of host to his master gladly. One wonders how little a life can be worth that the seemingly timid wizard would sacrifice his, for so little return. In any case, the deal was done, for whatever reason. Quirrell was always extremely warm as a result of Voldemort's occupation of his body. He'd always refuse to remove his turban or his cloak, even when near fainting from the heat. Instead, he was said to drink this very chilly, tasty soup many times a day, even in the dead of winter.

Strawberry Congealed Salad in Layers, Poppy Pomfrey
Madame Pomfrey got this recipe idea from homesick, stressed-out, frightened American soldiers assigned to do peacekeeping duties in war-torn Hertzegovina. They told her they'd been trained to shoot and kill, defend and attack. The need to keep others from killing each other and knowing when to step away was incredibly frustrating and scary. She knew that getting them to talk about the things they'd like to eat, making up a menu in their minds, was a great exercise in stress management. It was distracting without interfering with mission parameters, and not at all militarily sensitive. So many of them talked about this "Jello salad" that she felt it must have some mysterious medicinal properties. Certainly, every patient she fed it to did immediately feel better!

Death Eater Cabbage, Igor Karkaroff
Though Karkaroff's apple and cabbage recipe was very good, his past as one of Voldemort's Death Eaters made everyone frankly cautious about doing justice to this dish. Although he was apparently repentent and helped the Ministry of Magic hunt down collaborators, everyone knew Karkaroff had done it to avoid a term in Azkaban. Nothing like a pot of braised cabbage seasoned with suspicion ...

Giant Strawberries by Owl, Olympe Maxime
Madame Maxime needed large strawberries to cover in chocolate, and she wrote to a friend who grew gigantic ones in South America. She sent back the required number of humungous berries, and required several owls to transport them! They had to fly, generating a gravity-defying vortex to keep the large produce aloft. Here they are, flying at dusk over the English countryside, approaching Hogwart's.

The Celtic Pie Plate, Armando Dippet
Armando Dippet was the headmaster of Hogwart's School before Albus Dumbledore and though many consider the latter to be the greatest headmaster ever in Hogwart's history, Dumbledore demurs. He considers his predecessor to be greater, if for no other reason than Dippet never got the acclaim he deserved; in fact, Dippet would have rejected it. The older man was the absolute diplomat, able to soothe parents of murdered children, fire or hire with great tact, calm a panicky crowd -- Wizard and Muggle alike. It was this ability to keep the status quo without drawing attention to the fact that he was doing so that was his real contribution to society at large. If pressed Dippet would smile and offer you some pie, served from an old dish made for an ancestor of his. It's a beautiful piece, very homey, and the questioner would not be able to resist asking about it, allowing the conversation to change, without anyone noticing ... and the pie was always good, too!