The Feast of Saint Coellicia III

Author: Arfons Jellicandante

THIRD COURSE

Author’s Note: As custom dictates, the fish course was followed by a course of vegetables.

WILTED GREENS with a dressing of Oleander Coast vinaigrette. A simple salad of hearty greens, more likely than not kale, was paired with perhaps the most shocking culinary decision of the evening—a vinaigrette composed with Oleander Coast reserve. This wine, imported from Alinor, is said to be so rare that it can only truly be enjoyed when imbibed from a goblet containing a sapphire (and, as the High Elves insist, each goblet demands a fresh sapphire garnish). To use such a vintage in a salad dressing was a sign of immense wealth to some, though to others it was a sign of enormous stupidity.

PITH OF UMBER PERSIMMONS pounded flat. Though many enjoy the sweet flesh of umber persimmons, there is an orchard outside of Marbruk in Greenshade that cultivates a pithy strain of the fruit. This pith, both sumptuous and springy, was pounded flat with mallets and lightly brushed with garlic oil.

THE TOWER OF MUSHROOMS, so called because the assembled dish stood over twelve feet tall. This artful tower was said to imitate White Gold tower, though no sketches of it survive to the present day. To prevent the tower’s collapse, servants selected mushrooms for diners from the top of the tower downward, using modified polearms.

SINMUR’S CARROT, an original dish prepared by Brazollus’ chefs. The centerpiece of the dish was a carrot of staggering proportions, discovered by a farmer outside Cheydinhal and purchased by Brazollus’ castellan for an undisclosed sum. It was said to be as tall as a fully grown Breton, and as wide as a hogshead. The entire carrot was buried in a pit, roasted with coals, and served garnished with vinegar and syrup.

KELP FRITTERS, with an aioli composed with truffle oil. Tough kelp harvested from the islands of Topal Bay were steeped in tea from Corinth for days to soften its leathery texture. The kelp was dredged in flour and then folded in the manner learned from bookmakers. It was then dipped in beaten egg and covered in breadcrumbs before being dipped in lard. The result is a complex assortment of textures. A crisp outer coating, chewy middle layers, and creamy inner ones.

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FOURTH COURSE

Author’s note: The grains course is often the last eaten in lesser households, where meat and poultry were not readily available.

EYES OF MARA filled with grape must. These balls of seasoned rice, normally a confection for children, were served by Brazollus Dor as a joke of dubious taste. His brother-in-law, Anwentende, had been recently captured by pirates and castrated. Whether the joke was well-received or fell flat was not recorded for posterity.

BRAZOLLUS’ SURPRISES, served with butter and cream. These were simple bread rolls, though at Brazollus’ instruction each was given a unique filling and randomly distributed among the guests. As history instructs us, the Emperor’s Surprise was filled with a live dove, while a minor squire found his was filled with pearls the size of grapes.

ALMFINGERS, served in the traditional manner. Using ovens of Akaviri design, Brazollus’ kitchens were able to puff saltrice grains to several times their size, which gave them a peculiar honeycomb-like texture. Troughs of honey mixed with mustard were set up along the table, allowing guests to coat their hands in the sticky sauce, then in puffed saltrice. The puffed saltrice and sauce were then licked off the hand. A Khajiiti diplomat in attendance found this disgusting practice too much for his fastidious sensibilities and stormed off. Relations between Cyrodiil and Elsweyr took years to recover.

NIBEN BRAID in a sauce of stewed herbs. As Niben braid noodles are prized for their length, Emperor Brazollus decreed that no noodle made by his chefs could be any shorter than nine feet.

RELIGIOUS WAFERS served unadorned. On the fast days of Saint Coellicia, the wafer was eaten to signify the end of the fast. Here, Brazollus served wafers to signify the end of the fast and the arrival of the feast (as the previous courses did not emphasize meat). An apocryphal story suggests that Emperor Brazollus had Saint Coellicia’s bones disinterred, ground, and mixed in with the flour of his wafer. This is, of course, absurd, as the practice of saint-eating had been banned almost a decade earlier.

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