Chapter 45: Xiao Meng Has Come to the Store
Translator: OnGoingWhy Editor: Vermillion
"The host’s first attempt has failed."
The system's voice rang out in Bu Fang's mind, startling him. How could he have failed? The fragrance was so strong...
As Bu Fang lifted up the clay pot from the stove and uncovered the lid, a thick amount of steam mixed with the fragrance of chicken gushed out. The sweet scent of Sage Herb was mixed within the fragrance as well. Bu Fang was slightly intoxicated as he greedily inhaled.
Within the clay pot, the blood red chicken meat was slightly quivering like jelly and the chicken soup was still bubbling. Every time a bubble burst, a rich fragrance would flow out. The purple juice of the Sage Herb had turned into a lime color after simmering for a while. There was a layer of yellow foam floating above the soup; it was the crystallization of the spirit herbs' essence.
"Hmm?" Bu Fang was frowning as he stared at the color of the chicken soup. After a long while, he gave a long sigh and a touch of regret appeared on his face.
There was no mistake. Bu Fang had indeed failed. If he had successfully completed the Sage Herb Blood Phoenix Soup, the soup would not be lime in color. In order for the chicken soup to achieve a perfect efficacy, the juice of the Sage Herb had to completely permeate into the meat, and then the color of the soup would be amber.
"System suggestion: During the process of cooking the Elixir Cuisine, the host can expedite the process of the permeation of the Sage Herb juice into the meat of the chicken by using true energy. This will preserve the efficacy of the spirit herbs and improve the texture of the meat," the system said.
"Use true energy to expedite the process?" Bu Fang's eyes slightly lit up. There were basically no mistakes in his cooking steps, but he still failed in the end. He reviewed what he did and pondered for a while, but still did not figure out where he was wrong and only realized his mistake after the system's reminder.
He was cooking an Elixir Cuisine and the ingredients and spirit herbs used were extremely abundant. In order to perfectly neutralize the spirit energy of the ingredients and spirit herbs, he could not just rely on kitchen tools to cook the dish. He also needed to use true energy as a medium to complete this Elixir Cuisine.
The truth was that it was not just the Elixir Cuisine. In the future, Bu Fang would also need to use true energy as a medium when cooking other dishes. It was also one of the reason why the system would help Bu Fang to convert crystals into true energy.
Many high grade ingredients contained a tremendous amount of spirit energy and it was not possible to rely on kitchen tools to handle them. In the event he made a mistake, it would easily result in an explosion or various other problems. Bu Fang would need to consider these issues once he started to use ingredients that exceeded fifth grade.
"Huff~" Bu Fang deeply inhaled, then beckoned for Whitey and placed the failed product of the Sage Herb Phoenix Chicken Soup into Whitey's stomach to be recycled.
He stretched his body and yawned. It was time for him to sleep. As a young man aiming to become the God of Cooking, Bu Fang must regulate work and rest. When it was time to sleep, he would definitely not be doing other things.
Even though Bu Fang failed his first attempt at cooking the Sage Herb Phoenix Chicken Soup, he was still enigmatically calm and collected as usual.
After patting Whitey's wide belly, Bu Fang went back to his room and peacefully slept.
The next morning, he woke up and after washing up, he started that day's business.
He practiced the Meteor Cutting Technique as usual and completed that day's mission. Then he used the radishes from the practice to cook a Radish Egg-Fried Rice.
After Bu Fang tasted it and was satisfied with the taste, he expressionlessly left it for Blacky who was sleeping at the entrance.
The store was starting to get popular as well. At the very least when he opened up for business every morning, he would see a loyal army of obese men outside. Fatty Jin and his buddies came everyday regardless of rain or shine.
"Owner Bu, I'll have a serving of Golden Shumai! Oh my, the Sweet 'n' Sour Ribs actually costs fifty crystals! Since it's expensive enough, I'll have a serving as well!" Fatty Jin laughed and said as the fat on his face jiggled.
The other obese men also ordered their dishes, and so, Bu Fang started his busy work. Ouyang Xiaoyi quickly arrived as well. After working for a few days, she was slightly more experienced and was more proficient at her job.
During business hours, Bu Fang was working as usual. He did not have the time to think about the cooking method of the Sage Herb Phoenix Chicken Soup and seemed to be very calm.
Xushi unhurriedly walked into the store. Ever since the crown prince ordered him to investigate the place, he was completely taken captive by the delicious food and came almost everyday.
"Girl, I'll have a serving of Boiled Fish!" Xushi slightly nodded toward Ouyang Xiaoyi.
Boiled Fish was Xushi's favorite dish. He liked it more than Lees Fish and Fish Head Tofu Soup. The feeling of pleasure as each slice of smooth and tender fish entered his mouth was simply intoxicating for him.
After receiving the order, Bu Fang nodded and walked toward the fish tank. His hands swiftly entered the water and grabbed a black fish out of the tank. The fish was a type of freshwater fish and was a grade lower than the Thunder Silver Carp. However, the texture of its flesh was more tender than the one from the Thunder Silver Carp.
When Bu Fang placed the struggling fish on the cutting board, the fish even spat out a stream of water at him, creating a patch of wetness on his clothes.
Bu Fang was expressionless as he smacked the fish's head with the kitchen knife. Then he skillfully descaled and gutted the fish. Finally, the fish was sliced into pieces. His cutting technique was even more superb after a few days of training and his speed when slicing the fish was extremely fast.
Once the fish was sliced, the other steps were much easier. After the spirit vegetables were handled, they were placed into a single pot to boil. When a fragrance drifted out, he threw in the slices of fish that were just slightly heated up with ginger water to remove the fishy smell. After boiling for a while, the dish was plated.
The fragrant and glossy Boiled Fish was placed in front of Xushi, causing his eyes to suddenly lit up and reveal an eager expression on his face.
Perhaps even the crown prince was unaware that his number one advisor was actually a foodie.
A middle-aged man, with a handsome face that seemed to have been sculpted from marble, stepped into the store with his hands behind his back. His gaze was steady and cold, while his aura was tense.
The rich fragrance that filled the interior of the store caused a slight amazement to appear on the middle-aged man's face.
When the middle-aged man saw Ouyang Xiaoyi, he was startled once more and puzzledly asked, "Hmm? Xiaoyi? What are you doing here?"
As his voice rang out within the store, Xushi who was just about to put a slice of Boiled Fish into his mouth suddenly trembled and the slice of fish fell into the bowl once more. The result was some of the sauce from the bowl splattered onto his beautiful beard.
"Great… Great General Xiao Meng?" When Xushi turned his head saw who it was, he immediately stood up from his seat and greeted while performing a fist and palm salute. At the same time, he thought, "My heavens… The Great General Xiao Meng actually appeared in this little restaurant as well? This is an important information. I must inform the crown prince."
Xiao Meng nodded. He naturally recognized the crown prince’s number one advisor. He appreciated the ability of Xushi to plan strategies and schemes as well and recognized him as a talent.
"Unc… Uncle Xiao, why are you here as well?" Ouyang was still afraid of Xiao Meng. After all, the number one expert within the imperial city was very prestigious.
"Since I am at a restaurant, I am naturally here to eat," Xiao Meng simply replied and turned to look at the menu. The astronomical values on the menu did not surprise him and his expression did not change in the slightest.
As expected of a seventh grade Battle-Saint, his temperament was steady.
Xushi secretly nodded and gave a thumbs up to Xiao Meng in his mind.
"Sweet 'n' Sour Ribs, improved Egg-Fried Rice, Lees Fish, Golden Shumai… as well as a jar of Ice Heart Jade Urn Wine," Xiao Meng calmly read out the name of the dishes, while standing with his hands behind his back.
After memorising the order, Ouyang Xiaoyi went toward the kitchen and relayed the dishes to Bu Fang.
Bu Fang was slightly surprised as he thought, "It looks like a big spender came, these many dishes would cost a lot of crystals..." After expressionlessly nodding, Bu Fang began to cook.
After Xushi quickly finished the Boiled Fish, he bid farewell to Xiao Meng and swiftly left. He was in a hurry to inform the crown prince about the news.
Since the Great General Xiao was visiting the restaurant, it was a good chance for the crown prince to win him over.
Not long after Xushi left, Ouyang Xiaoyi timidly served each of the dishes that Xiao Meng had ordered.
Every single dish exuded a rich fragrance. Even someone as calm as Xiao Meng could not help but be surprised… As he discovered that the taste of the dishes were far more delicious than he had expected.
They were far better than the dishes of the number one restaurant in the imperial city, the Immortal Phoenix Restaurant.
The last order, the Ice Heart Jade Urn Wine, was personally served by Bu Fang. As he walked out of the kitchen, he was quickly noticed by Xiao Meng.
Xiao Meng put down his chopsticks, looked at Bu Fang with a fake smile and said, "You're the owner? The Owner Bu who injured my daughter and claimed to be able to save her as well?"