Hokuou Kizoku to Moukinzuma no Yukiguni Karigurashi — 85

Delicious Mushrooms and the Summer Scenery
Stories of the Four Seasons

Once it’s summer, even the remote village in the snow country has the sun shining down brightly.
The forest is dyed in a bright green shade and flowers are blooming attractively.

Today, I am going to pick mushrooms with Sieg.
I was full of energy from the morning, making lunch to be taken to the forest.

Today’s dish is ‘salmon cream pie’.

First the pie crusts were made.
Into a bowl, salt, flour, and butter were put in then mixed well with a wooden spoon. Flour was frequently sprinkled on butter to make the surface well-coat

In this season, dairy products could be acquired at cheap prices in the stores, so I did not hold back on using butter.

Once the butter became fine, I then rinsed my hands with cold water.
After that, the dough was then put in a clean cloth bag and then left to sit in a icehouse for an hour.

While letting the dough sit, I made the creamy salmon filling.
I used an imported salmon I bought from the store. I used only the upper half and left the other half for the Rango family.

The salmon that had been salted and stored in the icehouse was taken out and dipped in milk to remove the smell.
Next, mushrooms, onions, carrots and potatoes were fried until they become soft.
In another pot, butter was melted, and then flour was added. A while after that, milk was added and stirred. Once the lumps from the flour were gone and the mixture became smooth, the pot was taken away from the fire.
The vegetables that were just cooked and the cream sauce were mixed and then soup from last night and spices were added to adjust the flavour.
Finally, the salmon was added and then it was cooked until the moisture disappears.

When the creamy filling was done, the crust that was resting in the icehouse was ready as well.

A process of melding the the moist crust was shaped using a long wooden stick was repeated.

**

The finished pie dough was placed on a cloth.
On one end of the square shaped crust, ingredients are placed then arranged into a triangular shape. As for the ends, they were tied up firmly to not let the cream leak. Next, beaten eggs were used to coat the surface to give it lustre.

Oil was applied to an iron plate then the ready pies were cooked for some minutes. Salmon cream pies, ready to serve.
If it was winter, warm and crunchy pies would be nice, but this was sweaty season so there was no desire to bite into fresh pies.

After the residual heat went away, it was put into a basket. Lunch was ready.

Afterwards, I had breakfast with Sieg then we headed to the forest.

“You were up early today. How rare.”
“I was making packed lunch.”
“Was that so?”

The packed lunch was placed in the basket.
I wonder if Sieg will be happy. While thinking that I proceeded down the road.

“Ah, it’s there!”

Today’s objective are yellow mushrooms called kantarelli. {Chantarelle}

“Sounds like there would be poison in them.”
“There are.”
“……”
“It’s okay as long as we don’t eat too much.”

Kantarelli are one the most loved mushrooms in the world aside from cultivated mushrooms.

As for the poison, well, it should be fine. Probably.

“Sounds suspicious.”
“It’s alright, it’s alright! Father said so I’m sure it’s alright.”

Kantarelli has a refreshing scent like apricots. I brought Sieg closer to make her sniff the mushroom scent.

“It indeed does have such an aroma.”
“Right? These are tasty, you see!”

Sieg too seemed to have given up and started harvesting mushrooms.

Around an hour later, we collected a fair bit so we stopped harvesting mushrooms.
In the area, there were blueberries so we decided to pick some.

“Sieg, why don’t we rest now?”

Aren’t you tired? Even when asked that, Sieglinde said that she was fine with a carefree face.
There was a leaf on her hair so I took it off.

Since there was a river nearby, we decided to have lunch there.
I soaked handkerchiefs that I brought in a basket in the river. I handed one to Sieg.

The forest is cool, but when we diligently pick berries we still have sweat forming. It feels good to wipe one’s face with a cold handkerchief.

When I glanced at Sieg, she was in the middle of wiping her neck with the handkerchief.
The traditional clothing has a closed collar so she was sweating unnecessarily.

I could get a slight peek her white neck, and for some reason the way she was wiping her sweat was sexy so I unconsciously blurted out, “Ohh!”

It was something I wouldn’t have been able to see if I was sitting next to her. I thanked god for this fortune.

“Ritz.”
“Y-Yes!?”
“What is it?”
“No, nothing.”
“?”

Sieg called me without turning around so I was surprised.
She just wanted to say, “It’s hot today,” nothing more.

I was acting suspiciously, so Sieg shot me gazes of doubt.

“Did you do something?”
“Ah, erm, no.”

In the end, I confessed honestly.

“Erm, I was watching you wipe your sweat from behind.”
“What fun is in that.”
“It’s not fun, but unbearable~ or so.”
“……”

I received reproachful gazes.
Even so, I still liked it when Sieg looked at me like that so I got a bit excited.

However, I don’t want to anger Sieg.

“S-Sorry, Sieglinde-san……”

After that, I made up my mind to stop peeping at Sieg.

◇◇◇

Lunch was the salmon cream pies I made in the morning!
I wanted to be praised by Sieg, so I claimed to have woken up early and put all my effort into making it.

“Look, Sieg! I worked hard from the morning.”
“That’s amazing.”

I wondered if she would pat my head, so I put my hands on my knee and lowered my posture, but Sieg only patted my shoulder. How regretful.

I was hungry, so I decided to proceed.
The triangular pies were slightly larger than our palms. I grabbed one with both hands and bit into one end.

The outside of the pie crust is crunchy, while the inside is soft from the cream.
The salmon has a faintly savoury taste so it tasted even better. The lumpy cream had a thick flavour, and the vegetables that were cooked until they were soft also entertained the tongue.
When I chewed the mushroom we recently picked, the flavour overflowed.

The pies made using the gifts of summer were very satisfying.

“Ritz, it was delicious. Thank you.”
“You’re welcome~.”

Sieg also liked it. Nice. It was worthwhile to wake up early.

“Come to think of it, how do you cook the poisonous mushrooms?”
“Kantarelli, huh.”

The poisonous mushrooms, I mean, kantarelli have a crunchy texture, taste slightly like pepper and have a rich scent.

Frying them in butter and eating them on bread is good, and putting them in milk soup is also good. They can be used as ingredients for pies, they can be cooked alongside meatballs, and they go well in the sauce for grilled fish.

“Well, the cooking methods are the same as normal mushrooms.”
“I see.”
“It also goes well with alcohol.”
“I’ll be looking forward to that.”

I decided to reflect on my peeping today, and put effort into pouring drinks.

……Well, though I already pour drinks for Sieg because I like it.

After returning home, I delivered half of the harvested kantarelli to Ruruporon and as for the rest the dirt was removed and then the mushrooms were left to dry in baskets. Dried mushrooms are important for the winter.

“Sieg, what should we do about the blueberries?”

I already made about enough jam, sauce and juice for twenty. I just made tart the day before yesterday.

There were many ripe ones so I ended up picking a lot, so I was agonising over what I should make.

“How about Lassi?”
“What’s that!?”
“A yoghurt-based drink.”
“Hehh, sounds delicious!”

It seemed that Sieg drank them during her days in the army when she did not have much appetite.
Apparently it’s a healthy beverage from a foreign land.

There were ingredients at home, so Sieg said that she’ll make them.
I offered to help.

To not get in the way of Ruruporon while she’s cooking, we made them on the table.

“Ritz, can you crush the blueberries please.”
“Alright.”

While I was crushing blueberries, Sieg did other work.
In a bowl, she mixed yoghurt, syrup with lemon, and milk.
The crushed blueberries are then squeezed with a cloth to get only the juice.

“Then, it’s finished by adding blueberry juice.”
“Hehh~”

I drank the fresh beverage.

“Ah, it’s cool and delicious.”

The sweet flavour of the blueberries and the sour taste of the yoghurt went well. It had a clean taste, so as Sieg said I could imagine myself drinking this when I did not have much appeitite.

As we did that, dinner was served.
It was cold at night, so I closed the windows.

The season showed signs of changing from summer to autumn.



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12 thoughts on “Hokuou Kizoku to Moukinzuma no Yukiguni Karigurashi — 85

  1. I haven’t actually heard of kantarelli containing poison , but my parents pick some every year, and I don’t think they get rid of the (possible) poison in any elaborate way.

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    • A lot of toxins are protein-based, and cooking with heat denatures (rips apart the unique 3D structure) the protein. An example would be egg white. Uncooked, when the proteins are tight little folded clumps, egg white is a clearish fluid. Cooking dentures these proteins into amino acid chains, which then tangle up to create the solid white we eat. A protein’s effect is based on it’s 3D structure, so if you denature a toxin’s proteins, then those effects will no longer exist.

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      • Amendment to that. Looking it up, the most common “false chantarelle”, is harmless, or is possibly slightly irritating to the gut. The really toxic false one, of genus Omphalotus, has its toxin as a kind of terpene, which is a hydrocarbon. Coincidentally, hydrocarbons, which include crude oil, are flammable, though I have no idea if cooking them involved combustion.

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