The Best Assassin, Incarnated into a Different World’s Aristocrat - Chapter 104
- The Best Assassin, Incarnated into a Different World’s Aristocrat
- Chapter 104 - The assassin cooks the best dishes
- Chapter 104 : The assassin cooks the best dishes
The next evening, I went to the kitchen.
To cook up the celebration feast for the newest member of our family.
[Lugh-sama, please taste test the stew.] (Tarte)
[It needs a little more salt.] (Lugh)
I let Tarte take care of adding the finishing touches to the stew and salad, while I handled the boar and the Lunan trout.
The day before, the boar was cured in spices to eliminate the odor, marinated in fruit juice containing enzymes to tenderize the meat, and cooked in a special way since noon.
The part I used was the loin, which was low in fat, and I thoroughly removed the tendons.
Since this meat was going to be fed to a pregnant woman, I was extremely mindful about hygiene.
After meticulously cleaning the meat, I used wind magic for high pressure sterilization and froze it with water magic to prevent parasites.
And the day before, I stated that I would make it into ground meat, but I wasn’t going to serve it raw.
I was going to try out my new cookware.
[This is a strange pot.] (Tarte)
[It’s called a low-temperature cooker. It’s pretty handy.] (Lugh)
This was the most cutting-edge cookware yet back in my world.
It had been scientifically proven that the ideal temperature for cooking meat was around 60°C, which increased the flavor and prevented the meat from becoming too tough.
By heating it at a low temperature of roughly 60°C for a long period, the perfect balance between flavor and tenderness could be achieved.
However, it was also a cooking method that demanded a great deal of patience and time.
After all, I had to heat this boar for 5h while maintaining a temperature of 60°C before chopping it.
I couldn’t achieve that manually.
Therefore, I used the technology I made possible by analyzing the【Divine Treasures】. By inscribing magic formulas on the material and using a Fahr Stone as a power source, I created a pot that automatically kept activating the magic formula.
And this cooking session also served as a way to test the endurance of this magic tool as I kept using it for a prolonged period.
I had poured water into the low-temperature cooker, and I was now taking the vacuum-packed boar meat out of the water.
The vacuum pack was filled with the seasoning juice and spices along with the meat.
I cooked them together for 5h, making the meat rich in flavor.
[Yes, it’s perfect. …And finding out that the accuracy of this magic tool isn’t negatively affected by prolonged use is a great haul. Time for the finishing touch.] (Lugh)
I took out the charcoal grill I built long ago as a pastime.
The charcoal was lit, and the net was heated.
The boar meat was cut into bars, and I seared the surface by rolling them over the grill.
Since the meat was already fully cooked on the inside, I only roasted it to add aroma.
After that, I cut the pieces into thick slices. The particularity of low temperature cooked meat was its tenderness, and the enzymes of the fruits tenderized it even more. So even if I cut them thick, it was still easy to bite through them.
[Whoa…! What a beautiful light pink color. It looks so tasty.] (Tarte)
[It is. Try one slice.] (Lugh)
The best part of a roast beef was the pink center.
And the pounded boar meat I made was pink all over except for the surface, which I grilled.
This was the power of my low-temperature cooker.
[It’s so sweet and tender, I feel like my cheeks could fall off. So this is what you call wild boar tataki.] (Tarte) (TN : In the previous chapter, I mistranslated “tataki” as mincing/grinding. But now I know it’s the name of a Japanese cooking method, so I keep it as it is.)
[Yeah. I rarely make it because it takes so much time, but it’s worth the effort. Please give it the finishing touch.] (Lugh)
[Yes, sir…!] (Tarte)
Tarte placed the slices on top of a salad, and finally, she poured my specially made ponzu sauce over it. The light ponzu went well with the tataki.
Then at last, it was time to start the main course of the day.
[As I thought, this smell would be too much for a first-timer.] (Lugh)
I took out the Lunan trout from the bran.
It smelled of bran and fermentation.
…It’s no longer a problem once you’re used to it, but I guess it would be hard to bear for a first-timer.
I carefully rinsed the Lunan trout to wash away the bran, cut a slit in it, coated it in salt, wrapped it in wet paper with herbs, and put it in the steamer.
[What is the purpose of wrapping the fish in paper before steaming it?] (Tarte)
[Wrapping it in paper keeps the fish extract from escaping and makes for a fresh finish, and the scent of the herbs I used to remove its smell will permeate well.] (Lugh)
[That way, the smell of bran will disappear.] (Tarte)
[And that’s just the beginning.] (Lugh)
Steaming fish using paper was a Japanese cooking technique called “Houshoyaki.”
However, that was just the prep.
Today, I was going to cook that fish Chinese style.
I removed the fish from the steamer before it was fully cooked, then I moved it to another plate.
I threw a large amount of chopped green onions on top of it, then I poured hot aromatic oil over them.
The fragrant smell of scorching green onions drifted by with a loud sparking sound.
That smell was mixed together with the fragrance of the oil I added to the fermented Lunan trout, getting it rid of the barley bran smell.
I sweetened the steaming to calculate the amount of oil I would cook at the end.
This cooking method was called qīng zhēng (清蒸).
It was Chinese. And in my opinion, it was one of the best ways to eat fish.
Finally, I poured sauce over the fish and sprinkled it with herbs.
[I can’t get enough of the smell of charred green onions! It stimulates my appetite!] (Tarte)
[It’s a dish to enjoy for its aroma, but it also has great flavor. The oil makes the skin crispy and the surface soft, but the inside is moist.] (Lugh)
[Whoa…! I cannot wait to try it! May I have a taste?] (Tarte)
[No can do, because the visual appeal of a whole steamed dish is important.] (Lugh)
[That’s too bad.] (Tarte)
It had a strong fragrance and combined the best of fried food and steamed food.
Such was the charm of qīng zhēng.
That’s enough food for today.
…I did promise to make a gratin, but it would be too much if I added that as well.
I’ll make it tomorrow with today’s leftover stew.
At long last, it was dinner time.
Ah our table were my parents, Tarte, Dia, and Nevan.
[Um, are you sure you don’t mind me sitting with you?] (Tarte)
[Today is an exception! Because it’s for a special occasion! Besides, you are now officially our son’s mistress, so no one will complain even if we give you special treatment. In fact, from now on, I would like you to come and sit with us.] (Esri)
Tarte, who was usually on standby behind me as my servant, timidly took a seat.
[Um… When did this become official?] (Tarte)
[If anything, as your mother-in-law, I’m surprised you thought you were hiding it well despite you two being so daring about it.] (Esri)
Tarte turned red.
She was a shy girl, yet her emotional defenses were weak.
[Mom, please save the teasing for later. The food will get cold.] (Lugh)
[Right. Well then, let’s all dig in!] (Esri)
After we said our dinner prayers, we toasted with the local brew of Tuatha Dé.
[[[Congratulations on your pregnancy!]]] (Everyone)
With those congratulatory words as our cue, dinner began.
[Mmgghh…! Lugh, you big liar. You didn’t make any gratin!] (Dia)
[Because it would’ve been too much in my opinion. I’ll make it tomorrow.] (Lugh)
And obviously, Dia was pouting.
However, as soon as she ate a slice of boar tataki, she cheered up.
[It’s so tasty! I don’t think I’ve ever tasted meat so sweet and tender.] (Dia)
[I shall have a taste too. Oh my…! This is truly delicious. It’s even more tender than the beef they serve in the capital. Is this really boar meat?] (Nevan)
The cattle of the royal capital were the very best of the best, raised only for consumption.
Most cattle were used for labor and then turned into meat once they became useless, so they were hard and smelly.
However, the cattle of the royal capital lived a comfortable life, so they didn’t develop too much muscle, and they were fed with food designed to improve the quality of their meat.
[It all depends on how you cook it. Even boar can be tasty if you take the time and effort to make it right.] (Lugh)
If you picked the right parts and put a lot of effort in it, the resulting dish could exceed all expectations.
…Although, careful attention isn’t enough for something to measure up to high-grade meat.
I wanted to obtain a cow from the royal capital somewhere. If I asked Maha, she would provide one for me, but I didn’t want to add to her workload just for my own entertainment.
[I would like to know about the time and effort you invested in this. Is that fine with you?] (Nevan)
[If this is only about the cooking method I used, then I can teach you, and you’re free to tell whoever you want about it. I’ll write you the recipe later.] (Lugh)
Since the low-temperature cooker was an example of the technology I obtained by studying the divine treasures, there was no way I could spread it, but there was no problem with showing her the low-temperature cooking method.
…Given Romanlung’s financial resources, she could probably afford to hire a full-time cook dedicated to low-temperature cooking, and have them do it all manually.
[It’s a shame that there is no gratin, but Lugh’s stew is still a delight.] (Dia)
[At present, the cream stew made by Lugh-chan is a specialty of Tuatha Dé, and there are even people from other territories who come just to eat it.] (Esri)
The wild boar tataki and the standard cream stew were well received.
But the problem was the steamed fish.
It was made by fermenting a Lunan trout, which was a special product of Tuatha Dé.
[Fufufu…! Nevan, I see you haven’t touched the fish. A girl who cannot appreciate its taste isn’t fit to be a bride of Tuatha Dé.] (Esri)
My mother had an evil look on her face.
Ever since the day before, she had been wary of Nevan’s attempts to make me her groom.
[Yes, of course I will have a taste.] (Nevan)
[Um, does this mean I’ll have to eat it too!? I don’t want to eat bran-perfumed fish!] (Dia)
Rather than Nevan, it was Dia who was afraid to taste the fish, despite being officially approved by my mother, like Tarte.
[But, even though you said it’s supposed to smell foul, it has a delightful aroma. It’s fragrant and very appetizing.] (Nevan)
[Eh? You mean this is the stinky fish? I thought it would come out later.] (Dia)
[Huh…? Come to think of it, it does have a very nice scent. …Lugh-chan, don’t tell me you used a regular Lunan trout without fermenting it!? That’s foul play!] (Esri)
[No, I did use the fermented Lunan trout. Have a taste and you’ll see.] (Lugh)
Indeed, it was really pungent, but the characteristic of fermented food was that it had a much richer taste than raw food, so if they tasted this one, they would instantly realize it.
As no amount of ingenuity could bring out a flavor like that from raw food.
The three of them took a bite at the same time.
[It’s exquisite! This is, without a doubt, the best steamed fish in the world!] (Nevan)
[Yeah, it’s amazing! This is the first time I see a fish dish that smells so good. And the fish itself tastes great.] (Dia)
[…This does taste like fermented fish. It’s absolutely delicious. This renders my test null and void, but the fact that Lugh-chan made such a wonderful dish for me moves me deeply. And I can feel the baby in my tummy enjoying it too.] (Esri)
I tried it as well.
Just as I had hoped, the skin was crispy, the surface was tender, and the inside was juicy. And the seasoning was perfect too.
I was convinced that such tasty steamed fish couldn’t be found even in the royal capital.
And Tarte, who ate it a bit later, also praised it.
However, there was only one person who seemed to have mixed feelings about it.
[Dad, is it not to your taste?] (Lugh)
[Oh no, it’s undeniably good, but… I like the smell of bran, so I can’t help but find it lacking.] (Cian)
I would’ve never guessed.
Cooking was a really profound discipline.
I thought the smell of bran was a bother, but I didn’t think some people would like it.
This time, it wasn’t just my mom who was the protagonist, but my dad too.
…I’d better make the best of this blunder next time.
After that, we had a fruit tart for dessert.
This fruit tart was made with lots of seasonal fruits.
[Phew…! That was delightful. Your cooking is the best in the world, Lugh-chan!] (Esri)
[Perhaps this is an exaggeration. A parent’s opinion tends to be too biased.] (Cian)
[Not at all, Father-in-law. As someone who has tasted gastronomy from all over the world, I can vouch for that. I see that your strength isn’t your only forte, Lugh-sama. Now I want you even more.] (Nevan)
A shiver ran down my spine.
When I turned to my father, he smiled wryly and threw me a lifeline.
[Lugh is an overachieving boy. The only thing I’m worried about is that he might be too capable for his own good. …Any more than this, and the country may no longer leave him alone. At the very least, he should be able to relax while in our mansion.] (Cian)
[That won’t do. We have to make use of what time we have to make the appropriate preparations. Otherwise, we’ll be defeated and killed.] (Lugh)
That’s why I took advantage of today’s feast to test the durability of my magic tools, as well as the hunt to test my new searching spell.
[If I may, Lugh-sama. Having already defeated three demons, I have a feeling that we will manage to defeat the remaining five soon as well.] (Tarte)
[That’s unlikely. Our battles will definitely get tougher from here on out.] (Lugh)
I declared with conviction.
I wasn’t apprehending the future, I was certain of it.
[Oh dear. May I hear the reason for that?] (Nevan)
Nevan asked. It was most likely not because she didn’t understand my point, but to see if my answer would match her own thoughts on that subject.
[The demons are intelligent. The ones we’ve met so far were all acting independently without coordination because of the competition going on among them. And that’s also the reason their assaults were done so hastily. But now, the orc demon, the beetle demon, and the lion demon, all three of them were killed in a row. So unless they’re the ultimate stooges, the rest of them will think of a way to deal with us.] (Lugh)
If they were just pawns in a game, no doubt they would foolishly continue to act alone and use shallow tactics.
But the demons weren’t stupid. If the methods they used until now didn’t work, then they would resort to other means.
[Say, how would they deal with us for instance?] (Dia)
[A simple answer would be that they would have more than one demon attack us. The other day, if there had been another demon like that one, do you think we could’ve won?] (Lugh)
[…I’m not sure we could have, it would’ve been practically impossible.] (Dia)
[Exactly. Right now, we’re in a situation where we can finally defeat the demons who are working independently if we are carefully prepared. …To be honest, I’ve been worried for a long time that many of them would attack us at once. That’s why I had spells like【God Spear】ready to send our enemies flying.] (Lugh)
The reason I was able to use a variant of【God Spear】to isolate the lion demon at that time was because I had developed it beforehand.
[But that’s not all. They could create a situation where we would be in no position to fight them. For example, let’s say Tuatha Dé was attacked by a horde of monsters. If a demon showed up somewhere at a time like this, I wouldn’t be able to abandon my home and head there instantly. By the time we had cleared out the monsters, they would’ve long completed their objective and vanished into thin air. Or they could do something even simpler, with a demon rampaging through locations we can’t reach before they finish their job.] (Lugh)
With the hang-gliders, we could move at super speed.
However, the people who would inform us of the emergence of the demons couldn’t move as fast.
And I couldn’t always get information from Meena as easily as last time.
[There are way more gaps than I thought.] (Nevan)
[Yeah, that’s why we can’t let our guard down, and we’ll need to be more diligent.] (Lugh)
I was always trying my hardest to get stronger.
I was also strengthening my information network. In cooperation with Maha, we were building a high-speed communication network that connected the information network bases that Orna had set up.
Carrier pigeons were conventionally considered to be the fastest means of communication. The plan was to enable communication that surpassed that in terms of speed and reliability.
In this era where communication = transporting letters, real-time communication would be intensely effective.
It would exist not just as an anti-demon measure, but also in future businesses.
[You’re truly amazing, Lugh-sama!] (Tarte)
[Thanks for the praise, but I also plan to make you even stronger, Tarte.] (Lugh)
[Yes! I’m ready to do any kind of intensive training for you, my lord!] (Tarte)
[Of course, I’ll do my best as well. I’ll create a whole bunch of new spells.] (Dia)
[In that case, I shall contribute with money and authority.] (Nevan)
I had a feeling that what I couldn’t do on my own, I could do with them.
Speaking of which, that stuff should be arriving soon.
Better get ready for it too.
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