FOOD & DRINK
As a melting pot of cultures and races, Püertagœ has many traditional foods originating from different cultures, or the grand metropolis itself. At most, one cannot deny that the most fusion food is in Püertagœ. It is most certainly a place to venture to for a culinary experience unlike any other.
For new arrivals to Püertagœ, the cuisine can be rather too rich, and the Püertagœn specialty known as the Tūkka’ Pies is no different. The Tūkka’ Pies are essentially simple unleavened breads made of Tūkka’ flour and baked with a rich filling of fried meats (mostly leftovers of Wôrdiţ (deer), ßnuwg (antelope) and C-bxa' (chicken), but there could be many other surprise meats mixed and baked into the pies, depending on who’s cooking, or Žringjă (cheese). More rarely, an innovative cook will fill the Tūkka’ Pies with more exotic mixtures, such as Gyfw-t (rodent) meat, which is considered somewhat of a delicacy and imported, Ka'Tika (a type of fish), resulting a delicious blue filling, grilled Skïtra (tomatoes), Zagifu (gamey bird) meat, and so on. Most interestingly, Tūkka’ Pies are never made with sweet fillings, although there are numerous other sweet dishes to compensate for this lack.
Since breads generally are a large part of the Püertagœn cuisine, bakeries are numerous, and the smell of Tūkka’ Pies, Brakß Tūkka and other baked dishes is pervasive in the lower Rings, as is the smell of fried Wôrdiţ (deer) and C-bxa' (chicken).
In the 12th Ring of Püertagœ, down near the cistern and the docks, several merchant stalls sell foods especially for dock workers, merchants, military and new arrivals who just want to grab a quick bite on their way. Mostly, it’s fried Ka'Tika (fish) and other simple stuff, but one particular savvy Ãoni has developed quite a savoury and particular option - the Brakß Tūkka.
Brakß Tūkka is extremely popular. Cheap, filling and easy to eat while walking around, it has all the marking of a food which is about to become traditional. First, long strips of warm flat bread made with Tūkka flour, B'ashl (seaweed) and water, are lathered with a little Ynéijusx (milk) - brushed with a feather is best, just enough to soak a little through, but not all the way. Then, sprinkles of chopped and fried Ka'Tika are added on top, and the flat bread strips are rolled in, and grilled for a few moments.
Because in Tam'nýer—a' people don't waste food, leftover Glass Noodles (aka noodles made of B'ashl seaweed) are fashioned into small round shapes, peppered with Vrația spice (the mild version only) and fried in Noor’liès oil, and the result is the spicy-salty Tam'nýer—a' equivalent of chips. They are typically eaten with fried Ka'Tika.
From a distance, the colourful stalls of the Qua’Wumhi sellers in Püertagœ could resemble those of merchants of clothing and leathers, but only the most naive tourists could mistake them upon a closer inspection. First, the smells are absolutely delicious; then, there’s a gaggle of children constantly milling around. Made of all sorts of fruits and sweet fungi, including the lovely purple Kandanžu, the pink Vuîntü, the orange Zlytnoki (peach-orange) or the deep-red Zyţ, the Qua’Wumhi could essentially be described as jam-leather. A delicious, healthy, nutritious option to preserve and transport easily most fruit and fungi, the Qua’Wumhi are a specialty of the Lung Continent.
For weary travelers and teething children alike, chewing on a Qua’Wumhi is a common sight near Püertagœ and all the way to Fawzia-Kedet. The sweet dried preserves are also cheaper than the real thing, unless we’re talking off season. Most Qua’Wumhi, if carefully kept in closed dried containers, could last up to a few days.
The Qua’Wumhi are made out of all fruit and fungi which are made from good harvested fruits & fungi, or less than presentable and whole - either because of a fall, small cut, or because part of the fruit could be rotten. In Püertagœ especially it is almost akin to a sacrilege to waste food, and so the making of the Qua’Wumhi is a very respectable and long-lived tradition which has its origins in the aftermath of the catastrophe known as Žraăst'e's Ire.
As a side note, despite just having Qua’Wumhi just as a pizza slice of fruit leather, some people bake them thick and crispy, making them into fruit leather chips, which one could make dips for. Eat Qua’Wumhi on the go or not, it is a delectable staple.
Muntade Bark Cake
The flour* is mixed with yeast, Drîmos sugar and Ynéijusx milk until it forms a smooth dough, and then left covered in a large bowl in a warm place, with enough room to grow a little while the composition is prepared. The Noor’liès are first roasted and then crushed, and the baked Hurtulj is chopped into very fine pieces and mixed with the Noor’liès and some more Drîmos sugar until the composition is more or less homogeneous. Then the dough is separated in two parts, and rolled into two large sheets, and the composition is sprinkled above them. They are first rolled in, and then braided together loosely, in a shape which resembles a Muntade tree trunk. Bake in an oven for a candlemark, and then leave to cool before eating. It is served whole for a party, or sliced down into individual portions. Decorate with IÞ'clet berries and roasted Noor’liès.
*Popular in Püertagœ and ZàÞça, this is an Ãoni treat, when made with real Muntade tree bark, and a sweet tasty desert when made for the general populace. The Ãoni variant is much more expensive due to the need to import the Muntade tree bark specifically to be used in cooking and then prepare it carefully - it’s not like the Ãoni simply eat the visible part of the bark, right?
The Ãoni typically shave off the outer bark, as well as the colored middle layer, to get down to the rubbery, white or cream colored inner parts. On the Coast, the fresh bark can be eaten as such, or fried. However, it dries up extremely quickly and so it is more difficult to export than one may think. One day, a clever Z'sa'Ză-'Bäa who was used to trading K'wãt found a way and now the fresh bark strips are preserved in Takhir̀-cha'. It keeps them fresh, and on the upside it also creates a variant of the Takhir̀-cha' with a Muntade aftertaste which is extremely popular with the Ãoni. Win-win, as they say, and a lot of P'ee K'äh for the clever merchant. Another way to use and transport the Muntade tree bark is to turn it into flour, after it dries. It’s easy enough to preserve, just needs to be stored in a dry and cool dark place.
It’s the last variant which is easiest to use for the Muntade Bark Cake, and for the non-Ãoni variant ground Tūkka’ seeds make a perfect replacement. The recipe simply refers to “flour”, but the difference is very important.
Village Special: Béschmed
The village is well-known for supplying Püertagœ and is really close by. The Kandanžu Pie, however, is best served warm out of the oven, and some would travel from the city for an Hour just to have a taste. The recipe is a family secret shared among few; despite the fact that pies are generally a simple concept to grasp, nobody manages to get it quite so good. Normally, the matured berries have a lovely hearty jam-like taste, resembling our blueberries and blackberries, but when baked into the Kandanžu Pie, they also leave a slightly nutty flavour, which is not entirely due to the Tūkka’ flour used. Rather, the secret is to gather a few twigs carefully and ground them into a fine powder, which is then mixed with Drîmos sugar and added to the composition before baking.
Village Special: Kwetz
For a fishermen's village, there could be no doubt that the special is related to the catch of the day - it is in fact a variety of fish chowder soup made up of fish, Skïtra (meaty tomatoes) and Berduri, and seasoned with B'ashl (seaweed) and Takhir̀-cha' (vodka). While it may seem strange that Takhir̀-cha' should be added to the chowder, it is in fact a long tradition which started with the first settlers of Kwetz. Nobody knows exactly why this was done, but the chowder is a men’s food, and this is no doubt part of the story. For the traveler, the taverns will almost always add a good chunk of heavy Tūkka’ bread, which should take the edge off. Still, the chowder is best served before bed.
SKY-CORAL SEA TRADITIONAL FOODS
Sweet snack made with small chopped Hk’täs slices mixed with Drîmos sugar and crushed roasted Noor’liès, and cooked in the Hk’täs leaves. The Hk’täs is sliced to remove the toxic parts and then finely chopped and mixed with Drîmos sugar and crushed roasted Noor’liès. The resulting mixture is wrapped in the most tender part of the Hk’täs leaves, and boiled for a candlemark.
*baked nectarine-like berries that are sugared with walnuts
Savoury snack made with small chopped Hk’täs slices, crushed roasted Noor’liès, and Tzlivy jerk meat. The Hk’täs is sliced to remove the toxic parts and then finely chopped and mixed with the crushed roasted Noor’liès and finely chopped Tzlivy jerky meat. The mixture is fashioned into small meatballs which are then fried in Noor’liès oil until they form a crispy crust.
*sliced nectarine-like berries, crushed & roasted walnuts with Tzlivy jerky meat made into meatballs
While Grásh are cute coast dwelling animals that are Tam’nýer-a’’s version of seagulls, (not forgetting either that they are considered good luck charms by pirates and the denizens of B'hărăbû), to coast-dwelling Khah’ the Grásh are their primary form of protein without having to face the dangers of the jungle. They are usually grilled and put onto skewers but can be eaten in various ways.
Purple (Lakăs) Omlette
The namesake is slightly deceptive, because eggs are not the main ingredient in this dish; rather, the largest purple Lakăs leaves are gathered and boiled together until then are properly cooked, then the excess water is removed. Zmew (Znawik eggs) and finely chopped Tzlivy jerk meat are added and mixed together. The resulting mixture is poured into a large cooking pan coated with Noor’liès oil and cooked until it starts to brown, after which it is flipped over. It is served with crushed roasted Noor’liès on top.
*Duck eggs cooked with kale-like tasting leaves, jerk meat, cooked in walnut oil and served with walnuts on top
Miphak are a type of monkey that are prominent in the jungles of the Sky-Coral Sea. They are a delicacy to the Khah’ peoples, and the Khah’ are also the only ones that tend to eat these cute creatures.
Zmew (Znawik eggs)
Another delicacy to the Khah’, which are traditionally served raw, so be prepared.
Lão crab meat is used for a specific dish; Lão Purses. The crab meat is packed into thin pastry and wrapped up as if a small coin pouch. Hence, the name Lão Purses. This is a common dish of coastal living Khah’.
Drîmos Vibûmçi (or Drîmos Tears)
Scrumptious and very rich dessert which is traditional to the Khah’. We all know how this race lives in close connection to nature and that they feed the bones of the animals they eat to the Lopikăş. Well, some of these bones are not given to the Lopikăş but instead boiled for a long time, marrow extracted, and through careful processing turned into a crystal-clear gelatin which is very rich in fat and protein.
The gelatin is then mixed with Drîmos sugar and poured into a big leaf where it gains a rounded tear-shaped form. A little honey drizzled on top and the dessert is ready to be served!
Why is it called Drîmos Vibûm, you ask?
The legend says that after a rain, a young Khah’ found a ball of the little dead insects stuck together in a white teardrop beneath a Brendyr’ză leaf and brought it home. The rain having been too acidic for the little creatures, they had all died. Because it was made of Drîmos, the child wanted to eat it, but he was not allowed. To appease him, his mother tried to make something for him which looked very similar. It was the beginning of the Drîmos Tears desert, but the recipe was significantly adapted and improved over the years until its current form.
The foods of this beautiful southern continent benefit greatly as it is known as the agricultural center of the world. Blessed with the temperature to grow crops in mass quantity despite the heat, this also means that not only are their creatures tough working animals but rich in flavour, tasting like game. With their warm climate, Trótskarr is able to grow many fruits, so their foods have not only pack a heartiness to them but also a citrus punch generally.
Desert foods are always interesting and spicy in Trótskarr, but this one is special because it is made with a mixture of meat composed of ßnuwg, Gyfw-t and C-bxa' (quantities may differ based on what is available, but bringing the three types of meat together is important for the taste), as well as ßnuwg liver and C-bxa' boiled eggs, all stewed together in an underground sand oven, and then mixed with Žraăst'e’s Fingers. Locals swear it is finger-licking good!
This is a sweet snack made of Hurtulj mixed with Féòg (blended together into a paste and mixed with Drîmos sugar) and slow-baked into small patties.
This particular dish is a traditional ZàÞçan meal. This salad is a refreshing meal to beat the desert heat; finely chopped edible cactus is mixed with Žraăst'e’s Fingers and Hurtulj. The resulting meal is a fresh slightly sour salad which feels very filling and not heavy, which accompanies any meat very well. The reason it is called Fishermen’s Salad is simply that the boats from ZàÞça, when going out to sea for longer than a few Hours, would pack a whole edible cactus, Žraăst'e’s Fingers and Hurtulj among the provisions, so that the men can have vitamins and nutrients for the duration of the trip and not fall prey to scurvy.
T-'a'ŢĂs'múr TRADITIONAL FOODS
Life in the mountains can be cold, this is why the Z'sa'Ză-'Bäa still retain fur, albeit thin, all over their bodies, unlike their cousins the Khah'. Settlements in the mountains themselves start at an elevation of 6,000ft, so if you live up here what really makes the heart sing is spice and hot foods. This is why traditional Z'sa'Ză-'Bäan foods are generally hot and meaty, to keep the belly full & cozy warm.
This dish doesn’t include the sweet Q'wolḑ spiders, but a large species of tarantulas that the Z'sa'Ză-'Bäa actually hunt for food. Their legs are pulled off, as well as their venom sacs (very carefully) and after they are washed with clean water they are actually cooked among hot flat stones (a layer of stones are placed over the hot fire embers, then the spiders, and then another layer of stones). It is said that cooking these stones in contact with the spiders gives them healing effects.
Wôrdiţ meat in a curry with Zlytnoki as a base, made with additional herbs and spices which are pounded together in a stone mortar and pestle to release oils and flavors. It may not seem like much, but the combination, slow cooked over several candlemarks makes a hearty meal that helps fight off the cold of living at such an elevation. This one is definitely a comfort food for any Z'sa'Ză-'Bäa.
Since the Z'sa'Ză-'Bäa are very appreciative of Zagifu as a salty and savoury meat, it is not surprising that one of their traditional recipes is centered around this bird. Tenderized by a special vinegar made of purple Tágraz, the meat is slightly fried or roasted prior to being stewed for one candlemark. It is stewed in a mix of finely chopped Skïtra (including the purple version) until the meat falls off the bones by itself. Now, although traditional, this meal is expensive because the Skïtra doesn’t naturally grow in the Mountains. For those Z'sa'Ză-'Bäa who do not have the resources, a good but less savoury dish can be obtained with IÞ'clet berries and fresh Tágraz.
Ãoni coast TRADITIONAL FOODS & THOSE 'BORROWED'
The Wôrdiţ Pot-Pie takes a bit of time to make, but it’s a favourite comfort food from the Ãoni Coast that has been made popular in the Mountains and throughout the Lungs continent due to the Z'sa'Ză-'Bäa trade. The Wôrdiţ flank meat is chopped in small chunks, and then half of it is browned in a large pan, and later mixed with the raw half of the meat and left to stew with Muntade bark and a handful of B'ashl (not more or it will become too salty) for two candlemarks. Once the Wôrdiţ is cooked to the point that the meat is tender, it’s time to slightly brown the chopped Hurtulj with mild Vrația spice added for taste, and then everything is mixed together with chopped herbs to form the stuffing of the Pot-Pie.
Dry Muntade bark is then used to create a “nest” which gets padded with a sweet dough made from Tūkka flour and baked Zlytnoki. Once the “nest” gets filled with the stuffing, more dough is added to form the crust, and everything is baked in the embers of a dying fire until the Muntade bark is almost burned. The Wôrdiţ Pot-Pie is a dish to eat hot and to share as a family.
suggested by Mel
This is a food specific to the Ãoni living in ZàÞça, although they say that it has been developed based on a traditional Ãoni Coast recipe. According to other rumours, a talented Ãoni cook discovered the sweetness of the Féòg and, becoming addicted to it, tried to incorporate it in as many Ãoni recipes as possible. Irrespective of the truth, the ZàÞçan Delights are very popular with the Ãoni healers due to the burst of energy they produce.
The Tūkka flour, Féòg pods, half of the Drîmos sugar, the Ynéijusx milk and the water used to boil the B'ashl are combined into a smooth homogenous dough, and then a small piece of Wôrdiţ lard is stirred into the mix until it melts, together with the finely crushed roasted Noor’liès and the juice from the Žraăst'e’s Fingers and the Zlytnoki. At this point, the dough should be rather sticky and a couple of handfuls of Tūkka flour should be added in, after which the mixture should be left to rest for a candlemark in a cool and dark place. To make the cakes, the cooled dough is rolled on a floured surface with a pin until it’s only slightly thick. Using a glass cup, round cake shapes are formed and then placed on a heated pan until they’re lightly browned on each side. Set aside to cool until they are just warm, and then sprinkle with a few drops of Miraile nectar and the other half of the dried Drîmos sugar before serving.
Spice of Life Salad
This is a food specific to the Ãoni living in ZàÞça, although it has been developed based on a traditional Ãoni Coast recipe.
The Glass Noodles are boiled with Ynéijusx milk and Vrația spice until they are done and all the milk has been absorbed, and then left to cool for a candlemark, after which the chopped Ka'Tika fish and the Damþî petals are added together. This should result in an intense blue color and quite a powerful taste too. The black Skïtra are roasted separately, and then added together with the shellfish and the Fairies of the Sea, and everything is mixed together into a blue-black-white salad which is said to make one receive visions from Ŧ'ţ'ra-'kii as they sleep after their meal.
This is a recipe which has actually been brought to the Ãoni Coast by the Z'sa'Ză-'Bäa merchants trading. However, in true Ãoni spirit, our lovely birds have adapted it to their own tastes and they swear up and down that it was Ŧ'ţ'ra-'kii’s wish for them to cook the Wôrdiţ meat in a different way. It is now considered a traditional meal. The food is actually very popular in T-'a'Ţăs'múr as well.
The fresh Hurtulj and the Wôrdiţ meat are boiled together with the B'ashl until the meat is very tender and almost melting, and then layed out as a thick paste over hot flat stones (cooking on hot flat stones is actually specific to T-'a'Ţăs'múr). On top, sprinkle the dried IÞ'clet berries, dried (and chopped) Skïtra of all colors, and dried blue Tágraz, and then the Vrația spice (after taste). Let everything slowly cook on the hot stones until the boiled meat is dry and starting to burn around the edges, and eat hot.
Lakăs is an interesting, colorful fern, and is a plant growing everywhere in the Sky-Coral Sea on the jungle floor or as a parasite on certain trees. When sprouting or very small the Lakăs are a very vivid purple. However, as they grow and mature, the larger leaves start to take on different colors, more often a lighter shade of purple or magenta, or even a fuzzy grey. It can be acclimated and grown on the Lungs continent as well, although it requires special care, as it needs plenty of water and protection from direct sunlight.
The roots of Lakăs can be baked, roasted and ground to make a bitter stimulant drink which the Khah’ have named Tók’Smărrj, literally meaning 'life-giver' in C'eröd. This drink is very similar to our coffee and is currently spreading in popularity as a drink to other parts of the world. However, overdosing on Tók’Smărrj is possible and can lead to arrhythmia and hyperactivity.
Takhir̀-cha' is actually a fungus in Tam'nýer—a' that is known for it's
bright yellow colour. While it is a fungus that causes dry rot, if boiled
for a candlemark (an hour), or left to simmer overnight, it extracts a
compound, turning the water into an alcohol, similar to that of our
Vodka here on Earth. Now, simmering overnight tends to make a
smoother, and stronger alcohol, but if you are a successful merchant,
needing to make high volumes, you can mix quickly prepared batches
with slower ones and alter the flavor and strength. Even when boiled,
the alcohol carries a much more diluted yellow colour of its original
Takhir̀-cha' alcohol is not solely useful as a beverage though, which means more opportunities to sell. If making this alcohol is your profession, you may want to delve into perfume making, as Takhir̀-cha' alcohol is the most common base.
Ordering Şzein will instantly notify the waitress that you like your liquor strong and straight to the point. It will tell your friends that you aren't afraid of spice and the burning sensation as it goes down too. Şzein is Tam'nýer—a''n whiskey, and even if you're a whiskey drinker in real life, perhaps the ingredients in this variation will turn you off.
The reason for this is because in order to make 'proper' whiskey includes various ingredients of which all are key. The first is Vriksum penis. Vriksum is a large majestic four-eyes beast that reigns in the Sky-Coral Sea and the Emerald Isles. The males are hunted most specifically for their reproductive organ for the creation of true Şzein. With the organ cleaned it is then stuffed with 10 C-bxa' egg yolks, bowl needles, Časht'ild and Zyţ. Once appropriately stuffed and sewn shut, it is to marinate in Zlytnoki for one whole Tam'nýer—a''n day on a bed of Ghōteni before ultimately being placed into a sack made of cheese cloth.
All this prep is vital for the drink to turn out proper. The other key factor of making good Şzein is the precious casks that hold everything as it aids to flavour the fermented wheat mash & added cheese cloth. The casks are nothing short of true craftsmanship as they are made from a blending of charred Muntade & Rus–lim' wood. Each cask is kept sealed for a minimum of one Tam'nýer—a''n month (3.5 earth years) to two full Tam'nýer—a''n years (60 earth years).
When all is said and done, a true glass of Şzein should appear as though it is burning. A chemical reaction that no one truly understands, but it does indeed warm the soul. Despite the fire however, because Şzein burns in such a way, eases all physical pain, and has Časht'ild, a known aphrodisiac as a component, having a drink of it can be a sign that
imbibe slowly with eyes closed the entire time, only opening them upon resting the glass back down on the table, it can be a sign that you are looking to 'worship' the Goddess with that person later.
A tea created by a handful of mixed herbs used to soothe the mind as well as the stomach.
G'týl is the umbrella term for a distinct type of tea that is meant for relaxation, and the health of the digestive system. While recipes of G'týl teas may vary, the main component of them is comparable to what we know as mint on Earth. G'týl can be combined with many things creating a multitude of flavours and enhancing the effect of the mint. It has been known to lull people who are having very bad and painful digestive issues into a healing sleep as well.
A tea created by a handful of mixed herbs and sweets. Can be used as a dessert.
If you have a keen eye, you may have recognized that this type of tea has a name similar to that of the Goddess Bók-T'ak, and you wouldn't be wrong to assume an allusion to her. Mët-L'ak is a type of tea that can be made multiple ways, as most can, but Mët-L'ak teas in particular are considered either a dessert, an aphrodisiac, or both.
Mët-L'ak teas have a notably rich, sensual flavour with an aftertaste akin to chocolate.