All the crazy food they eat on Game of Thrones

Whether you're reading George R. R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire series, or watching its popular HBO adaptation, Game of Thrones, you'll notice that food plays a big role in the major events happening throughout Westeros and across the Narrow Sea. In a world where dragons used to roam the wild and the undead are starting to invade, everyone is focused on the politics surrounding the Iron Throne, where treachery and Machiavellian-level scheming are needed to rise to power and successfully hold onto it. Every time someone dies or two characters start talking about killing someone, it's usually at a dinner table or banquet, where all kinds of unique dishes and treats are on offer. If you're usurping someone from power or planning some kind of elaborate assassination, you better have pastries and wine available. Just make sure you wipe the blood off the table before diving into Game of Throne's craziest foods. Warning: spoilers ahead.

Oysters, clams, and cockles a la Stark

In the fifth season of Game of Thrones, we see Arya Stark finally try to assassinate someone for Jaqen H'ghar. Her master is one of the Faceless Men of Braavos, a fabled and mysterious order of assassins capable of altering their appearances in order to avoid detection and remain covert. After scrubbing the floors at the Faceless Men's House of Black and White for what seems like the entire season, Arya's finally given an assassination mission. In order to infiltrate the marketplace and get close to her first target, Arya disguises herself as a merchant of oysters, clams, and cockles. Luckily, this helps her gain entrance to a nearby brothel (because prostitution and raw, bivalve seafood go hand in hand) in order to kill Meryn Trant, who's on her personal hit list for killing her sword-fighting instructor.

Pigeon pie, sliced with Valyrian steel

Throughout Westeros, pigeon pie is a traditional dish served at most wedding receptions. One of the first times we ever hear about this poultry delicacy is when Sansa Stark is offered a slice while mourning the deaths of her brother and mother at the Red Wedding. Sorry Shea, but that's the wrong kind of dish to offer someone whose family recently died at a wedding. We also see a ginormous pigeon pie served at the wedding reception of King Joffrey Baratheon and Margaery Tyrell. Since pigeon pies are meant to be served to everyone at the wedding, this one is the size of Tyrion Lannister. Joffrey takes his grandfather's wedding gift, a Valyrian steel sword reforged from the blade of House Stark, and slices through the pie, releasing most of the pigeons inside and killing a bunch in the process.

Chicken for the Hound

If there's one thing that Sandor "The Hound" Clegane enjoys, it's a good bird. Being Joffrey's personal bodyguard for most of the spoiled king's life, The Hound is used to dealing with a chicken (zing). After abandoning the Kingsguard during the Battle of the Blackwater, the Hound captures Arya Stark, intending to bring her back to her family for a reward. After the Red Wedding, however, the Hound loses his chance to directly ransom Arya to the Starks, so he has to settle for her aunt, Lysa Arryn of the Vale. Along the way, the Hound and Arya stop at a tavern, where a group of the Lannister cronies are drinking to the demise of the Starks. The Hound growls a single sentence featuring a four-letter-word about King Joffrey and demands that they bring him some chickens to eat. After a bloody tussle, the duo kills the Lannister supporters, Arya gets her sword back, and the Hound gets his chicken. Everyone wins! Except those dead guys.

Hot Pie's direwolf bread

When it comes to the land of Westeros, Hot Pie has to be the worst name ever given to someone, but it completely fits his character. Arya Stark's portly, orphan companion was originally a baker's apprentice before being recruited for the Night's Watch. Hot Pie follows Arya Stark (who's disguised as a boy) and Robert Baratheon's illegitimate son, Gendry, as they try to evade the Lannisters' men. The Brotherhood Without Banners captures the trio and offers up Hot Pie's services as a baker to a local innkeeper in order to pay for the platoon's meals and lodging. Hot Pie, content with working in a kitchen and staying away from danger, gives Arya a loaf of bread he baked in the shape of direwolf, which is the sigil of House Stark, as a parting gift.

Lemon cake for discussing monsters

These desserts are luxuries only reserved for the nobles and more refined areas of the Seven Kingdoms. Lemon cakes are purposely baked in smaller sizes so that nobles can nibble on them with one hand as they gossip. This baked good is also the favorite food of Sansa Stark, which says a lot about her spoiled upbringing that seems to have led to her selfish demeanor. Well, until Joffrey ruins her life, that is. Of course, Olenna and Margaery Tyrell are fond of lemon cakes as well, which they all eat together as Sansa finally breaks her facade and reveals the insidious nature of King Joffrey.

Lamprey Pie, made from monsters

Lamprey pie might sound like a tame dish, until you realize what it's made out from. Lampreys are jawless eels whose mouths are filled with teeth. These beasts hide in water and then burrow their mouths into unsuspecting victims to feed off of their blood. Just look at this thing. It's hard to think that someone in Westeros goes into lakes and rivers just to hunt these things down in order to sell them on the market for butchers and bakers to put them into delicate, refined pies for the upper class to enjoy. In a land where the dead are raising an army and dragons are eating people, you know these bloodthirsty eels are probably humongous. You're basically eating a Kaiju by this point.

Pork sausage at the Dreadfort

Lord Roose Bolton's bastard son, Ramsay, swooped in to take Joffrey's place as the show's resident "creep who everyone hates." And with good reason: Ramsay tortures and kills countless people at the Dreadfort, and one of his most prized victims is Theon Greyjoy, who he captures after retaking Winterfell during the Greyjoy invasion. Ramsay breaks Theon, elaborately and repeatedly torturing him until he becomes completely subservient. But the castration scene redefines the word "cringeworthy," and it doesn't help that Ramsay jokes about it by eating a pork sausage in front of poor Theon afterwards, having mailed the severed body part to House Greyjoy in the Iron Islands. Hopefully, Balon Greyjoy had our favorite Justin Timberlake song playing when he got that gift in a box.

Dothraki horse heart

The exotic dishes of the Free Cities in Essos across the sea are quite different than the delicacies and plates served in Westeros. When the wife of a Khal is pregnant, Dothraki priestesses host a special ceremony where the mother-to-be must eat the raw, uncooked heart of a stallion as they chant and pray around her. Daenerys Targaryen is forced into marrying the Dothraki Khal Drogo by her brother, Viserys, in order to gain an army capable to retaking Westeros. Daenerys eventually falls in love with Drogo and embraces her position as Khaleesi. Of course, it takes a lot of heart to rule the Dothraki and there's a lot to stomach. Let's just hope her throat didn't feel hoarse after eating so much (zing…again).