Chapter 0020 Salt-grilled Gernape
“Hey, when you say you eat monsters, do you just eat them raw?”
Looking at Gernape, Elisha asked with a fearful look.
“Of course not. I cook it in the same way as a normal dish.”
After switching location to flat ground, I took out the tools necessary for cooking from my magic bag.
“I see you have a proper magic bag.”
“If I didn’t invest in one, I wouldn’t be able to carry all these cooking utensils around. Elisha, you have one too, right?”
“Yeah, it’s a pretty big one too!”
Elisha proudly tapped her magic bag.
“How much can it fit?”
“Hmm, a building like Manpuku-tei can fit in easily.”
That made me so envious. My magic bag was pretty much full with just the cooking utensils and necessary supplies. I decided to chuck all the supplies in Elisha’s bag when we go on an adventure.
When I washed the Gernape with water, I felt a slimy sensation.
It seemed that its surface was slimy. Cutting it on the chopping board would be difficult as it was, so I fixed it in place by stabbing it through the side of its head with a sharp tool onto the board. Inserting a knife from the top of the head to the spine, I sliced along its spine.
When I filet it open, I found beautiful pale pink flesh.
After cutting the base of the viscera near the head with a kitchen knife, I grabbed the viscera with my hand and pulled it toward the tail to remove it.
After the internal organs had been dealt with, the next step was the bones.
I made incisions along the ventral side of the spine from its head to the base of its tail.
Then, the bone separated from the body, so I cut off the spine from the head. Insert the cutting edge of the knife under the spine from the cuts, I scrapped off the spine from the meat.
Then, I stopped at the base of the tail without cutting it off yet and cut off the dorsal fin along with the remaining spine.
While pulling the tail with my left hand, I moved the tip of the knife from the dorsal fin to the base of the head to cut off the dorsal fin. After slicing off the tail fin, I moved the knife to the base of the head and cut off the head along with the innards.
“You handled that so quickly.”
“The basic body structure is the same as that of a fish after all.”
I was just applying my knowledge of fish I’ve handled.
If I took the time to scrub off the mud, I should be able to eat all the parts, but I didn’t have time for that, so I threw away the internal organs.
I didn’t know if that was the right way to do it, but since I removed the more inedible parts, it shouldn’t be a problem.
“All that’s left is to either grill or boil it?”
“That’s right, but before that, I want to remove the slime with hot water.”
The slime of such fish is often the source of the odor. I tried washing it with water, but it still had a slight odor, so I wanted to remove the slime.
“Ah if it’s hot water, I can use magic to create it.”
“Oh, as expected of a Magician!”
Normally, I would have to put water in a pot and heat it with fire magic to boil it, but with Elisha who could use both water and fire magic, creating hot water was a no-brainer.
Elisha smiled bitterly when I reflexively reacted so greatly.
I tilted the chopping board a little and poured the hot water that Elisha made for me over the Gernape.
“I see something whitish coming out.”
“Maybe that’s what’s causing the sliminess and smell.”
When the Gernape meat was soaked in cold water, a white substance floated to the surface, which I scraped off with a kitchen knife.
“Oh! The sliminess is gone.”
“The odor is almost gone too.”
I was right, that slime seemed to be the cause of the smell. Pouring hot water over it was the right choice.
With the sliminess and odor removed, I cut the Gernape into appropriate sizes.
I then sprinkled a little salt on it and fried it in a frying pan with oil over medium heat.
It smelled like fish fat and looked really delicious.
When the meat was cooked, the meat swelled up, and when the skin was browned, I turned it over.
Then, when the surface was also browned to a light brown color, I served it on a plate.
“Salt-grilled Gernape is complete!”
“Hey, it looks delicious, but…”
Looking at the finished dish, Elisha swallowed.
“Do you want to eat?”
“I can’t eat it because it’s a monster!”
“If you start turning into a monster, I could use [Shoulder] on you?”
“You don’t know what kind of abnormalities will appear in your body before you start turning into a monster! That’s not so tempting that I would risk my life for it.”
“I guess you’re right.”
Even though I knew I might be able to eat it, I was afraid of losing my life and never tried it.
I guess it was natural for Elisha who didn’t have my unique skill to be scared. We were unclear on how much [Shoulder] would work anyway.
“I’ll eat this by myself then.”
“Please do so.”
Her expression and tone sounded a little envious.
It looked and smelled so delicious after all.
While Elisha was watching, I poked the Gernape fillet with a fork and brought it to my mouth.
“What does it taste like?”
“It’s plump and melts in my mouth! Along with that, the fat and umami of the Gernape spread and coat the mouth!”
Since the fat of the Gernape had a proper sweetness, I made the right choice to eat it with salt without adding extra seasoning.
A thick sauce would spoil the taste of the Gernape.
“Those kinds of thin fishes usually have a lot of small bones, but what about this?”
“There are indeed a few small bones, but it doesn’t bother me. They’re neither big nor hard enough to stick in my throat, so I can eat it normally.”
It wasn’t difficult to eat, unlike Elisha’s concern.
Since the bones were that soft, it would be nice to try grilling it or making it into a soup stock.
There was no fishy or muddy odor that I was worried about, probably because the sliminess was removed.
I was so absorbed in eating it that I finished the Gernape in no time.
“Wow, that was delicious.”
“You really ate a monster. Is your body okay?”
“Yeah, nothing happened in particular. Rather, my body is full of strength.”
When I showed that I was in excellent condition by flexing my arms, Elisha looked at me as if she was looking at a strange creature.
Elisha’s reaction was natural because it was common knowledge in the world that monsters shouldn’t be eaten.
“So, if you eat a monster, you can get that monster’s skill, right?”
“That’s right. I acquired the three skills of [High-Speed Swimming], [Water Bullet], and [Sniper] that the Gernape had.”
“Oooh, I want to see those skills, so try swimming in the swamp over there.”
“Oi, I rather not.”
I wanted to see how fast I could swim, but I absolutely didn’t want to swim in a swamp.
I’d rather try it in a normal river or somewhere with clean water.
When I refused, Elisha laughed and said it was a joke.
“Swimming may be hard, but [Water Bullet] and [Sniper] might work.”
As Elisha stared at me with blazing eyes, I activated [Water Bullet].
As I held the water generated from my body in my mouth, I found a tree growing in the distance.
It would be boring to just fire at the tree, so I aimed at the few remaining leaves and shot a water bullet.
The [Water Bullet] shot from my mouth splendidly shot through only the leaves thanks to compensation by the [Sniper] skill.
The sound of applause rose from beside me.
“You really can use the Gernape’s skills. Lude’s power, acquiring skills by eating monsters, is way too broken.”
“So are you sure you haven’t changed your mind after watching me eat monsters?”
“Of course not. So let’s work together, okay?”
Thus, Elisha and I officially formed a party.