Chapter 313: Nabe/Hotpot
Translated by Zzonkedd
Edited by Gumihou and Onionpi
Please read this at kitchennovel dot com
Those stupid twins have loose lips but they were soon disciplined by Tabasa’s Fist of Fury.
She also apologises for their stupidity,  which I thought was rather nice of her. I don’t plan to make trouble for her though, since muscle brains can’t help being stupid.
I don’t hate these kinds of characters either,  so long as they have a fierce elder sister to keep them in line and thus, not my problem.
“Alright, I’m going to prepare dinner now. Teresa and… are you okay to help, Aiya?” 
“Naturally!”  said Aiya cheerfully.  It seems that getting better puts her in an enthusiastic mood.
“Would Celia like to help too?”
Celia seems quite competent with housework, this should count as part of her work in the future.
Alright, let’s go prepare some lunch!
I led the ladies to the mansion’s luxurious kitchen.
For today’s meal, let’s go with a nabe or hotpot.
A hotpot is perfect for deepening people’s friendships  since it involves sharing food from the same vessel.
It’s also easy to make, delicious and perfect for a large group of people.
Today’s hotpot will be… let’s go with the Yosenabe . One of the easiest hotpot to make. For the ingredients, I’ll be using seafood from Verulean. Since my seafood is limited, let’s make Salt Chicken Nabe  too since I have plenty of Rock Bird meat.
First, get all the necessary ingredients from [Net Super]. Since we’re going to make a lot, I probably won’t have enough.
Since I already told everyone about [Net Super], so, I could freely use it to procure Chinese cabbage, carrots, leeks, enoki mushrooms  and tofu as well as some commercially available soup base for the hotpot. To make soup base from scratch is quite troublesome. You’ll either need to boil chicken bones for a long time or use a lot of good bonito flakes for it. That’s not all, you’ll have to adjust for things like seasoning, amount of water, etc. It’s much easier to just buy the soup base you want and use it directly.
The soup base comes in liquid form, so all I have to do is cut the packets open and warm up the soup a little, before arranging the cut protein and vegetables for the hotpot.
Let’s see, let’s get a Bonito & Kelp soup base which I’ve had before and a Chicken soup base for my Salt Chicken Nabe.
Oh, I should also cook some rice to make rice soup and a few packets of noodles to finish the hotpot.
Since there are more of us in the kitchen, I also got knives and cutting boards for Aiya and the rest. Though they do have kitchen knives here, they were a bit on the large side for domestic cooking.
Among other things, I bought peelers for peeling carrots,  which should be safe for little Celia-chan to use.
Alright, shall we start cooking?
Well, I call it cooking but it’s really just cutting up a bunch of meat and vegetables and arranging them for the hotpot. 
“Celia, you peel the carrot with this,”  I demonstrated how to use the peeler, much to the delight of little Celia.
“Wow! The skin just falls off!” 
It’s good that she’s so excited about it, “Well, there’s a lot to peel, so do your best, alright?”
“As for Aiya and Teresa, please cut the vegetables this way…” For Japanese, nabe is more than just the taste, the visual impact is important too.  
Chinese Cabbage – Take off the root and core. Slice the thicker parts into thinner slices and the leaves into wider slices for even cooking.
Carrots – Cut into even slices for easy cooking
Green onions – Green part, sliced into 2 inches long. White part, into diagonal slices
Enoki mushrooms – Cut off the roots and separate the threads into small clumps
Tofu – Cut into 8 equal parts
Naturally, the vegetables should be washed before cutting.   The ladies were quite impressed by their new kitchen knives. Fufufu, Japanese knives are impressive, aren’t they? Even these ordinary supermarket level ones. I got a set each for the ladies along with a personal cutting board. Celia gets to keep the peeler, and one set was kept for this kitchen.
Personally, I find T-shape peelers great for carrots while I-shape ones are better for potatoes. Since the people in this world eats a lot of potatoes, having these peelers would make life a lot easier.
I wonder if there’s enough food for the former Adventurers?
Well, I’ll just deal with the matter as it comes.
While the ladies were preparing the vegetables, I got the seafood and Rock Bird ready.
First, the Aspidochelone and Tyrant Fish are cut into bite-size pieces. I also include some Small Hard Clams in the Yosenabe, I’ve already gotten the clams to spit out the sand so it’s just a matter of giving them a light wash before setting them aside.
The Rock Bird is cut into similar bite-size pieces. I should be making chicken dumplings too for the authentic Salt Chicken Nabe but I think everyone would prefer to eat as soon as possible so let’s leave it for another day.   Since there are so many of us, I have to make use of all three Magic Stoves. A total of 12 burners plus 2 portable stoves makes 14 pots of nabe at the same time. 7 stoves were dedicated to Yosenabe while the rest were for the Salt Chicken Nabe. Apologies but my seafood stock are limited, so I made sure to put more meat into the Salt Chicken Nabe. Hopefully, that’s fine with everyone.
After putting the soup base in, I arranged the vegetables and meat in the pot and let them simmer over medium-low fire.
“Once the ingredients are done, we can eat,” I told the ladies. Speaking of which, I also have a few portable stoves of rice cooking on the side.
The slight bubbling sound of food being cooked is very soothing.
“It smells great,”
“It should be done soon,”
“Yes, everyone will be hungry so let’s have a good meal together.”
Please read this at kitchennovel dot com~~
First, with the help of the ladies, I fed Fer & Co.
If I feed him later, Fer would make a fuss so I’d rather feed him first.
“Here you go, this one is a seafood hotpot and this one is a chicken hotpot.”
“Nu, I want meat only.”
“Maa, maa, the seafood is pretty good too, so do try it.”
“Muu, I guess it can’t be helped,”
“Be careful, it’s very hot. Oh, and leave the soup behind alright, it will be really delicious with rice.”
I have a feeling that Dora-chan probably can’t finish his two nabe portions, but I can always put away any leftovers into the [Item Box].
After dealing with Fer & Co’s portion, it’s time for the rest of us to eat.
We headed towards the dining room with the long dining table. I set out some pot stands I had bought from [Net Super] in a hurry after seeing the shiny surface of the clearly expensive table. Anyway, the table was long enough that we can sit in our own groups of four or five (one for me) with the hotpots in front of us. Each commoner family gets one Yosenabe and one Salt Chicken Nabe while the former Adventurers, whom I anticipated to eat more, were given two Salt Chicken Nabe and one Yosenabe.
For myself, I choose to have a Yosenabe.
“Wow~~ it smells really good!”  Lotte cried, her eyes shining.
“It’s the delicious meal you’ve been waiting for, so let’s sit down and eat,” I directed the people to their seats and went to the head of the table. “It’s my hometown dish, I’m not sure if it would suit everyone’s taste but please, do try it. One is made from fish and shellfish and the other is from Rock Bird.”
There was another dramatic ‘bufo!’ from the Adventurers… I’m glad my nabe is not in front of them.
“R-r-r-r-rock Bird?! Isn’t that a high-class ingredient?” Tabasa gasped.
“As sister said, even though we make a fair amount of money doing B and C rank jobs, we’ve only eaten it a handful of times,” said Irvine.
“Well, it’s not a rare ingredient for me. I happen to have some at hand,” all thanks to Fer, Sui and Dora-chan who all insisted on eating ‘delicious monsters’.
I have more waiting to be dismantled, so I really do have plenty of it.
“S-speaking of which, what kind of fish and shellfish are these?” Bartel’s voice was a little shaky as he stared at the Yosenabe.
“It’s delicious white fish, so please enjoy it.” There’s no way I’m telling you we’re eating Aspidochelone and Tyrant Fish. “Well, go on, eat it before it gets cold,”
Luke and Peter were also pretty shocked but they were more interested in staring into the pots and drooling.  As for the commoner families, they had stopped moving their hands when the combat-able slaves started making a ruckus. Lotte had been stopped by her mother from eating too. Ah, how could I resist that yearning little face?
Anyway, let’s lead by example.
I scooped out some of the Yosenabe into my bowl and started eating, “Everyone should go ahead and enjoy the food,” and proceeded to ignore them.  Maybe they’ll start eating if I don’t look at them? Slowly, the sound of cutleries moving was heard as everyone began to eat.
The tableware for today was from the original owner. For some reason, everything has a cute flowery design against a white background that doesn’t fit with the image of a hotpot.
“Delicious~~ Brother Mukouda, it’s very delicious!”
Lotte was currently enjoying the Rock Bird hotpot.
“Oooh, this fish is really delicious…”
“Yes, it’s been years since I’ve had fish but I don’t remember it being this good,”
The men of the commoner family commented.
I guess, if they are locals, the only fish they would have enjoyed in this landlocked country would be river fish. Personally, I find that sea fish has a better umami flavour than river fish. 
Aiya and Teresa laughed together as they watched the children  eat their fill. As slaves, it’s probably hard for them to eat as much as they like, no matter the situation. The five former Adventurers were gobbling down their food as though they were in an eating competition. Along with slurping and gulping, occasional cries of ‘delicious!!’ rang in the air.
Anyway, I could not finish my pot of Yosenabe and asked if anyone would like to have it. Almost immediately, the stupid twins and Peter volunteered to help me eat it.
While everyone else continued to enjoy their food, I prepared the rice soup for Fer & Co with the leftover broth.
“Hotpot is something that could be enjoyed until the last drop of soup,”  I explained as I took out a portable stove and heat up Fer’s Yosenabe broth.
Once the soup started bubbling, I plopped in the rice and cracked open a couple of eggs for him. After that, I take the pot off the heat to let the rice and egg meld together in the residual while I got started with the Salt Chicken broth. This time, instead of rice, I placed a packet of noodles into the pot and simmer it with a couple of eggs too.
When the noodles were done, the rice soup was done steaming too.
“Alright, here’s your rice soup and ramen,” I said as I placed both pots before Fer. I handed a portable stove to each group and allow them the fun of cooking the rice soup for themselves.
The commoner families were unexpectedly happy to see the eggs. Apparently, eggs were a rare treat for them.
Personally, I wanted ramen instead of rice soup today so I  used Dora-chan’s leftover Salt Chicken Nabe broth to make it. As expected, he was completely full after eating Yosenabe rice soup. I placed the noodles into the chicken soup and let it soften. As a final touch, I dropped a piece of butter onto the noodles.
“Woohoo! There’s nothing quite like Salt Butter Chicken ramen~~”
Suddenly, I felt everyone’s gaze on me.
“… ah, would you like to try the ramen?”
Everyone nodded. So, the pot of Chicken Nabe went on the portable stove as everyone cooked or quarrel over how to cook the ramen and butter. 
Finally, everyone leaned back with a sigh.
That was an excellent meal if I do say so myself.
“Hey, I’m not full yet!”
““Sui wants something more too~~””
““Haha, you two go ahead, I’m done here…””
Ah well, luckily I have more than enough Karaage and Salisbury Steaks in my [Item Box] to top them off.
After lunch, I dismissed everyone and sent them home to rest.
[Gumihou: Now I want hotpot too…]
Eguchi Ren: I am someone who likes Yosenabe. Commercially available hotpot soup base is super convenient. I like to use them when making hotpot.
 Structural Change: Combine 2 paragraphs  Structural Change: Combine 3 paragraphs  Structural Change: Combine paragraph & dialogue  Structural Change: Change passive sentence to dialogue  Delete Repetitive or Pointless Information  Additional Information for Aesthetic Purpose  Add Dialogue Tag  Creative Licence Taken  Yosenabe – 寄せ鍋
寄せ – Yose basically means ‘gather together’. Therefore a Yosenabe is a ‘Whatever Hotpot’ where you can cook whatever ingredients you like: chicken, seafood, tofu, vegetables of all kinds etc in a dashi-based broth.
 鶏塩鍋 or Salt Chicken Nabe is so ordinary that it doesn’t actually exist in the English language. It’s really ‘Salt Chicken Chanko Nabe’. Any nabe with the word ‘Chanko’ in it are basically nabe with a large amount of ingredients especially created for Sumo wrestlers, usually served with chicken dumplings.
Salt-based soup is different from water-based soup also known as Mizutaki where the soup is sometimes flavoured with a single kombu kelp, but often with just water.
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