If you have ever made the dreadful mistake of paying attention to my Twitter feed, which you should be able to see in the sidebar on the right side of my main page, you may have seen instructions for cooking and eating several Pokémon. These are my submissions to a podcast I listen to, I Chews You, where the hosts compete each week to come up with the most appetising and creative recipes for cooking a predetermined species of Pokémon (because I think we all know deep down that, just as Pokémon are smarter and more powerful than real animals, they also taste better). I’m normally not really a podcast person at all – it’s just not a format I particularly enjoy – but Pokémon and food represent a… very specific combination of my interests that don’t normally intersect. I Chews You is nothing intense or super-analytical, just good relaxing fun and generally pretty zany: four friends chatting about Pokémon and food, $#!t-talking each other and, for some reason that I honestly think even they have forgotten, discussing the pros and cons of La Croix sparkling water.
Anyway, I thought it would be nice to have all my recipes in one place, where they might provide some passing amusement to any of my readers who haven’t come across them before. If you enjoy these, maybe give I Chews You a listen, and if your own creative juices are stimulated, you can always send in your own recipes (on Twitter to @ichewspod or by e-mail to email@example.com) for their Wailord’s Mail Hoard segment. I usually submit something each week, and it’d be nice to hear someone from my own audience join in now and again.
So, let’s get cooking:
Delibird – Bellossom – Xatu – Cleffa
Kabuto – Shuckle – Tyranitar – Pichu
Gligar – Lugia – Plusle & Minun – Ludicolo
Chimecho – Swellow – Registeel – Beldum
Anorith – Nuzleaf – Wailord – Ninjask
Walrein – Tropius – Wingull – Solrock
Lileep – Makuhita – Feebas – Luvdisc
Shelgon – Camerupt – Wynaut – Torchic
Claydol – Whiscash – Spinda – Season 3 Finale Drinks
Psyduck – Cubone – Miltank – Wooper
Nosepass – Grovyle – Trapinch – Slowpoke
Glameow – Drapion – Hippowdon – Regigigas
Bidoof – Rotom – Prinplup – Bronzong
Stunky – Starly – Shieldon – Floatzel
Gastrodon – Munchlax – Gallade – Dialga
Lopunny – Garchomp – Toxicroak – Snover
Wormadam – Cresselia and Darkrai – Timburr
Boldore – Jellicent – Simisage – Solosis
Vanillite – Eelektrik – Volcarona – Darumaka
Foongus – Golurk – Cottonee – Shelmet
Klinklang – Trubbish – Leavanny – Deerling
Musharna – The Pan-Unovan Gargle-Blaster – Gourgeist – Florges
Spewpa – Aurorus – Pyroar – Dedenne
Two things about Delibird: 1) it’s an Ice-type, and that means a long, slow roast is in order to avoid burning the delicate meat, and 2) it’s a FAT bird, so it’ll cook more like a goose than a chicken. Trim as much excess fat as possible before cooking, and regularly drain the fat that renders out during the roasting process, but don’t throw it away! Save it for roasting or frying other dishes (beer-battered Arrokuda pan-fried in rich Delibird fat… mmmmmmm…). To get some Christmas-y flavours in there, I suggest preparing our Delibird with a spice rub of dark Dutch-process cocoa powder and ground cloves, nutmeg and allspice. Stuff the bird with a mixture of chopped raisins, apples and cranberries with a little lemon and orange zest, then roast at a low temperature for four hours. Delibird’s tail is extremely high in fat and should be prepared separately – slice it into inch-thick sections and sear with no extra cooking fat, the way you would a wagyu steak. Again for the Christmas theme, I recommend a mint sauce made from chopped fresh mint leaves with a little sugar and vinegar.
Here’s what I think about Bellossom. On the basis of Oddish, I think Bellossom’s body is essentially a tuber; because of the hula aesthetic, I suspect it’s similar to a Polynesian sweet potato. Thus, I propose a tropical dessert variant of the classic loaded potato.
Strip your Bellossom’s leaves and flowers (but don’t throw them away), then wrap the whole body in foil and bake until soft (probably at least an hour). Slit the Bellossom open, scoop out its starchy flesh, transfer it to a bowl, and mash it.
Combine the Bellossom mash with coconut shavings, some pieces of finely chopped mango and pineapple, some butter and a teaspoon of allspice, then stuff it all back into the hollowed out body. Liberally sprinkle with brown sugar and bake it on high for five or ten minutes.
To serve, pile on some whipped cream, sprinkle with chopped pistachios, drizzle with fresh nectar from Bellossom’s flowers, and wrap it all up in leaves from Bellossom’s skirt. Enjoy!
Time to cook and eat Xatu! Xatu is famous for its powers of pre- and retro-cognition, so we’re gonna cook a meal that will make you SEE THE FUTURE: fried Xatu brain! Crack that fragile bird skull, extract the brain and soak it overnight in salted Musharna milk.
The next day, drain and dry off the brain, then chop it into bite-sized pieces. Thoroughly coat the brain in flour seasoned with salt, pepper, and dried oregano, sage and Exeggutor leaves (or your alternate psychoactive herb of choice).
Fry the brains with finely chopped green chillies, onions, sweet corn and Morelull caps (again, you can substitute whatever psychoactive mushrooms are available in your area). Double check that you don’t have any work shifts in the next 24 hours, put on some soothing music and mood lighting, and get ready to become one with dreams, time and the cosmos!
Cleffa’s like… like a big chocolate-dipped space marshmallow. I think the way to go with Cleffa is to stuff it with ice cream (mixed from Miltank milk, fresh Payapa berries and a pinch of stardust under a full moon) and sear the outside to make a baked Alaska.
(This was actually the Houndour episode, but I didn’t have any good Houndour ideas and Kabuto came up in an unrelated Twitter conversation with the hosts)
Horseshoe crabs are not very meaty and their flesh apparently contains the same neurotoxin as pufferfish, but people in southeast Asia do eat horseshoe crab roe. More importantly, that blue blood contains chemicals with useful medicinal properties that couldn’t be produced artificially until very recently. Kabuto blood is probably downright magical; for all we know it could make you become immune to all disease and live for 300 years.
So, slice open your Kabuto, extract the roe, then drain the blood. Use the blood to make a sauce – I imagine it having a strong coppery tang, so balance that with some cream and a bit of sugar, flavour with onion, garlic, ginger and a hint of cinnamon, then reduce and thicken.
As for the roe, just fry it gently in butter, season with salt and pepper, then serve it in the empty Kabuto shell with fried rice, peas, carrots, chives, and a drizzle of the Kabuto blood sauce (bottle the rest for use with other dishes).
Prepare this dish for birthdays, career changes, midlife crises, retirement, or any other time you just kinda feel old.
I dunno if you want to cook Shuckle, but it’s… almost canon that you can make booze by stuffing berries into its shell and waiting for the juice to ferment. If only Pokémon didn’t have to keep that pesky kid-friendly rating, Shuckle wine would definitely be a thing.
The way you cook a Tyranitar is pretty straightforward; you hack it into thick steaks with a machete, season with salt and pepper, smoke them for an hour with old-growth Ilex Forest oak, then briefly sear them on both sides. Rare or blue; anything else is frankly a crime.
The meat has a powerful “earthy” flavour that comes from eating rocks and soil for over a hundred years as a Larvitar, which you can complement with a mushroom or miso ginger sauce.
Note that, as a Dark-type, the more chaos and destruction Tyranitar causes, the healthier it will be and the better its meat will taste. For best results, allow it to demolish a few small towns before setting up an ambush with high-level Fighting Pokémon, grenades, heavy anti-tank rockets, or a small nuke.
As I think we all know deep down, Pichu is really just a garnish to Pikachu… so this week, I propose we serve Pichu four ways as an accompaniment to I Chews You’s four classic Pikachu dishes.
To go alongside Ian’s coffee-marinated Pikachu, we can chop our Pichu into bite-sized pieces, drench in a batter liberally seasoned with cocoa powder, then fry and serve with rice and a sesame sauce.
For Evan’s Roman-style honey-roasted Pikachu, we can mince our Pichu and mix it with breadcrumbs, orange zest, black pepper, garlic and just a tiny drop of battery acid, then use that to stuff our Pikachu before roasting.
Accompanying Ben’s Pikachu mochi, we can render our Pichu’s fat and combine it with lemon or orange zest, a sweet white dessert wine and a decent helping of cinnamon to create a rich, decadent sauce.
Finally, to top Jeremy’s lemon Pikachu parfait… I Chews You logic clearly dictates that Pichu’s ears are made of black liquorice, so let’s turn that lemon parfait into a lemon-and-liquorice swirl, with a bit of grated liquorice on top.
Real scorpions are small enough to fry whole and are supposed to have a sort of nutty/salty flavour, but I reckon for Gligar it makes more sense to roast. Slice your Gligar down the middle and open it up, like butterflying a chicken.
Remove the large front claws and tail to cook separately. Slather the body with olive oil and apply a rub of garlic powder, cumin, cayenne pepper, paprika and thyme. Fold the wing membranes back over the exposed meat of the body cavity, to form a crispy “skin” during cooking.
Roast for an hour, then turn up the heat and broil for a few minutes to char the exoskeleton. Meanwhile, extract the venom from the tail and set it aside (use it sparingly to give a numbing zing to cocktails, sauces, etc, or use two full Gligars’ worth to murder an enemy).
Stuff the claws and tail with a mixture of breadcrumbs, dried apricots and hazelnuts, with a little orange zest and parsley. Use egg or milk to coat them with more breadcrumbs, lightly seasoned with salt and pepper, then fry them whole.
Lugia (season 2 finale)
The Random Number God has assigned to me my greatest challenge yet: my contribution to the #WumboMailHoard for I Chews You’s great festival of hedonism is to be none other than the ancient and holy master of the Whirl Islands, Lugia.
Obviously you can’t exactly buy Lugia fillet at your local supermarket, so the first thing you’ll need is a small fleet of whaling ships with grenade-tipped harpoons to bring the damn thing down. An epic Pokémon requires an epic cooking method, so (assuming you survived step 1) we’re going to cut down a silver fir, strip the branches, and use the trunk to spit-roast our Lugia whole over a massive bonfire for, like, 12 hours. You might have to rig a crane or something to turn the spit; apply basting sauce with a paint roller, y’know, get creative.
Stuff the body cavity with like a dozen whole lemons (at this scale, don’t even bother zesting them), an entire branch of rosemary, about the same amount of bay leaves (from, if possible, an actual Bayleef), a couple of diced Parasect shrooms and all the garlic you have.
For basting, use about four litres of Sinnohan Cherubi wine (make sure to get the good stuff, even if it bankrupts you; you can’t sully a Lugia with everyday cooking wine) and half as much Miltank butter, seasoned with paprika, oregano, onion powder, chilli flakes and garlic.
(Yes, I already told you to use all the garlic you have – get more. You’re cooking a Lugia, this is no time to be thrifty)
Once it’s been on the spit all day and the juices are running clear, you can start carving bits off with a two-man saw, or better, an Aegislash.
The best meat on a Lugia is in the belly and tail, where all the fat is – enjoy a slice with a rich balsamic sauce or a bright salsa verde, alongside a can of cran-raspberry LaCroix.
Oh, and remember to invite, like, 30 friends – partly to share your meal, but also to help defend you from the Kimono Girls who will absolutely hunt you down for what you’ve done.
Plusle and Minun
(from this bonus episode produced by some other fans)
Okay, here’s what we’re gonna do: Plusle & Minun cocktail. This is how they used to do it at this hole-in-the-wall dive bar in Mauville City that got shut down for health code violations back in ’09. First, get yourself two cocktail shakers (ideally copper, but stainless steel will do). In the first, mix grenadine, cranberry juice, raspberry vodka and a little Campari; in the second, blue curaçao, pineapple juice, blueberries and white rum. Now comes the tricky part: get your Plusle to zap the first cocktail shaker at full power for at least 10 seconds, and have your Minun do the same to the second one. Then, using rubber gloves, pour both drinks into a single glass. If you’ve done it right, the red drink will have picked up Plusle’s positive charge and the blue one Minun’s negative charge, and you’ll get a vivid lava lamp effect inside the glass (is this how science works? absolutely not, this is Pokémon, fµ¢£ you). Drink it all before the charges equalise, and you’ll have a static tingle for hours!
So the great thing about Ludicolo is it has a pineapple on its head. For many of us, that would be enough, but for I Chews You, the podcast about cooking and eating Pokémon, we need to go full Carmen Miranda on this bitch – which means it’s time to try some creative grafting.
Step 1: obtain cuttings or buds of several tropical fruit plants – banana, mango, dragonfruit, lychee, whatever you can get your hands on. If you can, get Tropius plantains or just a whole live Bounsweet or Cherubi.
Step 2: anaesthetise your Ludicolo (chemically or psychically).
Step 3: find the stem where the pineapple joins Ludicolo’s head and make several V-shaped incisions around its circumference, one for each of your cuttings.
Step 4: Take each cutting and push the base of the stem under the skin of Ludicolo’s pineapple stem.
Step 5: Apply disinfectant and antibacterial cream, then bandage everything tightly.
Step 6: ???
Step 7: Profit! Your Ludicolo can now grow entire fruit salads on its head, which you can pick every week! Dice the fruit and serve with whipped cream infused with vanilla.
And of course, pair with a can of fine coconut LaCroix.
So, uh… not a lot of good meat on a Chimecho, as it turns out – the head’s hollow, the tail’s just a thin strip about 40 cm long. We’re going to work with the strip. The great thing is that Chimecho tails are naturally a good thickness for making jerky.
There’s this monastery halfway up Mount Pyre that makes traditional Chimecho jerky, and I dunno if it’s good, but it’s… very chewy. You get this tremendous sense of achievement from finishing a piece, and Chimecho has a sort of peppermint flavour that’s weirdly addictive.
To start, get about 50 Chimecho tails. Skin ’em, trim off the fat, cover ’em in salt. Marinate them for a day or two in a mixture of Sitrus Berry juice, chopped mint leaves, maple syrup, garlic, onion powder, black pepper, chilli flakes and ginger paste.
Stick the strips in a dehydrator for 8 hours (add liquid smoke to the marinade if you’re going to do this), or hang them on a line next to a smokey fire for 24. Chew a strip of Chimecho jerky on a long hike, and wash it down with the crisp floral notes of a hibiscus LaCroix.
Am I too late for this week? Swellow’s… well, Swellow’s a bird; the sky is (literally) the limit. You can roast it with a honey glaze; you can crumb and fry it; you can grill it with a traditional Hoennese spice rub; you can mince it for pies or dumplings.
The best way to cook a Swellow? I think we should go for a roulade. Pound the breast flat, roll it up with a Chesto berry and herb stuffing, wrap it tightly in rashers of maple-cured Whismur bacon, then roast it for an hour and a half.
Then slather it all in a Cheri berry sauce – I imagine Cheri berries tasting sweet and spicy, like a mixture of a real cherry and a medium-heat chilli. Garnish with fresh parsley and serve with roasted vegetables, or any Pokémon from the Oddish line.
oh, damn, almost forgot: pair this dish with the complex, full-bodied sweetness of a peach-pear LaCroix.
…I mean, you…
…look, you can’t fµ¢£ing cook a Registeel, okay
but IF YOU DID, first you would rip out its innards and smash them to pieces with a titanium mallet. Season its metal guts with powdered gold, crushed glass, sulphuric acid and a dash of mercury, blend with a pile of iron nails, then stuff it all back in the body cavity.
Roast your Registeel whole in the open magma chamber of an active volcano for 300 years, or until golden brown, and serve with a garnish of fresh, crispy obsidian flakes.
And of course, pair this dish with the simple, fresh taste of a can of “pure” La Croix.
(Warning: this dish will definitely kill you)
Beldum is another tricky one, but it does have one important culinary advantage over Registeel: it has a brain and a big, juicy, succulent eye. Also, instead of blood, it has… magnetism? That’s just a confusing Pokédex entry.
Anyway this is how you make Beldum’s eye soup the old Hoennese way. Get, like, five or six Beldum. Separate the heads from the bodies; traditionally this is done with a meteoric iron cleaver, but you may find it easier to use an industrial laser cutter.
The bodies are no good for eating, but the metal has applications in forging magical weapons, occult artefacts, cybernetic implants and spaceship parts, so keep it for trade with your local magi-tech practitioner.
Pluck the eyes and scoop out the brains from all those Beldum heads, but don’t throw the heads away. Soak the brains in water overnight, then mash them and season them with salt, paprika, cumin, turmeric and a little powdered titanium.
Sauté the brains in butter with some crushed garlic and ginger until golden. Transfer to a pot of Torchic stock, throw in some chopped Payapa, Babiri and Liechi berries for an intoxicating mix of sweet, sour and spicy flavours, then bring it all to a boil.
Let the soup simmer for twenty minutes before adding the eyeballs, then give it another five minutes. Finally, serve the soup in the hollowed-out Beldum heads (make sure everyone gets an eyeball!) You could probably serve other soups in these too; it’s just not as poetic.
The brains and eyes make this a very rich soup, so make sure your dinner guests can refresh themselves with a tall, cold glass of grapefruit Lacroix!
So you want an old shrimp recipe, huh? Um. That is, an old-shrimp recipe, not an old shrimp-recipe. But we could make it both! You can’t do generation III without trying Hoennese fossil paella: a classic of the region.
Rice, garlic, onion, turmeric, paprika, Nomel berry zest, Cheri berries, pickled Lileep and Cradily fronds (use both for the colour contrast), slices of lemon-and-herb-marinated Relicanth fillet, and of course our star ingredient, Anorith, all fried in a single pan, then cooked with a savoury broth of Torchic stock and Pomeg berry wine.
A traditionalist would say you should just throw in a couple of whole Anorith, big juicy eyes and all, with no preparation before they hit the pan. If you’ve had enough eyeballs after my Beldum recipe, then crack open your Anorith’s shell, extract the meat (but leave the claws and tail whole) and potentially marinate it with honey, garlic and soy sauce before you cook everything.
As always, make sure you pair the piquant, smoky and sour flavours of this dish with just the right drink: a light, refreshing and subtle coconut LaCroix.
So, Nuzleaf. Nuzleaf’s like a… like a big turnip. Like a real starchy boi. Boil ’em, mash ’em, stick ’em in a stew. The best way to cook a Nuzleaf in my opinion is to chop it into cubes and then slow-roast them in Makuhita fat until they’re golden and crispy.
You can also work in the rest of the evolutionary line. Seedot is an acorn, and apparently you *can* cook with acorns if you boil them half a dozen times to remove the tannins that make them bitter. After that, just chop your Seedot up and roast it along with your Nuzleaf.
Finely chopped Shiftry leaves sprinkled over the Nuzleaf cubes add a little blustery, minty flavour. This dish is a great addition to any meat-and-three-veg ensemble, or on its own. Your LaCroix pairing this week is a tart and tangy passionfruit – enjoy!
Well, it was inevitable that Wailord’s Mail Hoard would one day turn against its creator. Hoenn is one of the Japanese regions, so historically they probably did once hunt and eat Wailmer and Wailord – unofficially, maybe they still do!
Are we worried about the ethical ramifications of eating ancient, majestic creatures of the ocean, with intelligence comparable to humans, who may one day be driven to extinction by overhunting? Of course not; this is I Chews You. This is just another day in the test kitchen!
So, Wailord is 14.5 m long, about the size of a right whale, but tips the scales at a comparatively petite 400 kg. An adult right whale weighs over 40 tons. There’s a reason the Pokédex calls this thing “the Float Whale Pokémon” – its flesh is spongy, airy and… marshmallowy.
That means it’s time for…
Wailord’s whale s’mores!
Carve some big steaks out of Wailord’s belly, then chop them into bite-sized chunks. Marinate these for a couple of hours with soy sauce, honey, garlic, ginger and white miso. Then skewer the chunks and roast them over an open fire until the fat starts to get melty and gooey.
Chocolate and graham crackers famously don’t go with whale meat, so instead we’ll sandwich our Wailord chunks between squares of toasted whole wheat flatbread, with fried shallots, slivers of carrot, cucumber and daikon radish and a generous helping of garlic-herb butter.
Whaling is thirsty work, so don’t forget to pair your Wailord’s whale s’mores with the traditional ice-cold can of La Croix – a vintage lime, for freshness and zing.
Okay I’m gonna be early this week; I’m getting this recipe done fast.
…okay maybe not Ninjask fast, but fast-ish.
There’s actually a lot of real-world recipes for cooking cicadas; they’re high in protein and are supposed to have a delicious “nutty” flavour.
Now, what they do in Rustboro City is they make this sauce with Kewpie mayonnaise, Tamato berries, Nomel berries, local brandy, and I dunno, probably some other $#!t too, then they slather it on and just eat the whole Ninjask raw with some lettuce like a fµ¢£in’ shrimp cocktail.
Stay away from that $#!t. That $#!t’s nasty.
What you actually want to do is pick off the wings and legs, then pan-fry ’em whole with some chopped Shroomish, garlic, ginger, soy sauce, Roselia honey, Cheri berry paste and a little rice wine. Simple flavours, simple process.
Also check out the chocolate-covered cicadas, cicada cookies and (I swear I am not making this up) cicada pizza at this link, because honestly the things people do with real cicadas are as creative as anything I can think of to do with Ninjask.
Oh, almost forgot the La Croix pairing – this week, you’ll be washing down your delicious crunchy fried Ninjask with the earthy taste of “coffea exotica.” Enjoy!
Walrein’s one of my favourite Pokémon of gen III; it’s a great Ice-type tank, it has a fantastic moustache, and it can feed your family for months if you pickle its blubber.
You heard me.
Cut your Walrein’s blubber into cubes, leaving the skin on. Wash and boil the cubes, then keep them in a barrel of sour whey for, like, two months. If you want, you can add flavourings or spices – toss some quartered Oran or Leppa berries in your pickle barrel, maybe some cumin.
After a couple of months, you can just eat chunks of Walrein blubber on its own, right out of the barrel, as a chewy snack. It’s even better, though, if you batter and deep-fry it in Delibird fat, and serve with a honey-soy dipping sauce. This is a rich, fatty and sour dish that needs a bright, sweet beverage pairing, so I recommend orange Fanta.
Just kidding, you’re drinking apricot La Croix.
Enjoy your meal!
I don’t know about you, but I think the Pokémon that are already food are some of the most difficult. Because you don’t want to just do the obvious thing, right? Sure, you could just eat the fruit from Tropius’ neck, but where’s the joy? The spark? The panache?
Well, I’m here to tell you that eating Tropius’ fruit is a scam. According to the Pokédex, Tropius grows the same fruits that it eats, so any fruit that it produces, you could just as easily collect for yourself! It thinks it can outsmart us by feeding our own fruit back to us! I won’t stand for this! Tropius has tried to cheat us, so animal welfare be damned; we’re going to have the most delicious revenge of all: Tropius pâté de foie gras!
Like migratory birds, Tropius can rapidly pack extra fat into its liver to prepare for long-haul flights. To prepare our Tropius, we’re going to start by making a nutritious boiled mash of barley, lard and some of the rarest berries in the Pokémon world, with some of the most complex and delicious flavours: Lansat and Starf Berries. Stick a funnel down Tropius’ throat and force-feed it this mash every day for three weeks, starting at 15 kg a day and gradually increasing to 30. Its fruit and its liver will both swell and become incredibly rich. Tropius fruit prepared this way is a treat in its own right, as it blends together the flavours of the berries in the mash, and is delicious on its own or as a component in a sauce or glaze. But the main event is the liver.
When the force-feeding process is over, butcher your Tropius and find the liver. Start the pâté by chopping the liver into bite-sized pieces and seasoning it with salt, black pepper, dried Tropius leaves, Sitrus Berry zest and a little paprika. Fry some shallots and garlic in oil, then add the liver and give it a good 5 minutes, tossing the pieces regularly. Blitz everything in a food processor, return it to the pan and deglaze with fine Sinnohan Cherubi brandy. Then add some Miltank cream and a tiny bit of sugar, simmer for a bit and pour it back into the food processor, along with some butter. Blend until smooth and creamy. If you plan to store the pâté for a while, mix up a Tropius fruit jelly and pour a thin layer over the top to seal it.
This pâté is indescribably rich, melts in your mouth, and has a complex mixture of fruity and savoury flavours. Serve it on crackers or toasted sourdough. Some people say you should never serve Tropius pâté with a liqueur, only with Cherubi wine. Screw them; I like it with Shiftry absinthe. But failing that, you should use the fanciest La Croix flavour on the market – I refer, of course, to the new Cubana mojito flavour.
(Note: force-feeding is now illegal in Unova and Hoenn because of its heinous cruelty, but you *can* still do it in Sinnoh!)
It’s theoretically possible to cook a gourmet Wingull dish, something you’d see in a nice restaurant, but I don’t think that’s really in the spirit of Wingull. Wingull is based on a seagull, and seagulls are (and this is true) the worst bird. For the real Wingull experience, you need some greasy, slightly burnt, funky-smelling, recklessly unhealthy Slateport City street food.
First, pluck your Wingull and remove any shotgun pellets. If there’s no shot, your supplier probably just found a dead one lying on the beach. That’s okay, you can probably still use it – just, like, dunk it in boiling water or something, idk.
When you butcher it, save the heart, liver and gizzard, which you can flash-fry with garlic and onions. Set the bones aside for making soup. If you’re cooking a Wingull, you’re probably cooking on a budget, so don’t throw anything away.
Chop up the meat into bite-sized pieces and grill it on skewers. The local vendors all use the same mystery spice rub for this. They won’t tell me what’s in it, but it smells of overripe fruit and tobacco smoke. Grill some flatbread, like a pita or something, with a little bit of oil. Then just roll the meat up in that, along with some fried onions, fried mushrooms, fried zucchini, fried artichoke… basically you want to get some veggies in there without accidentally making it healthy. Slather on some mustard or yoghurt (in Dewford Town they serve this with ketchup, but they’re a bunch of inbred freaks, so what do they know?) and serve with the least classy of all La Croix flavours: lime.
so, if you go to Fallarbor Town in the tourist season and see shops selling jars of this weird sparkly golden spice called “sun dust” or “solar spice” or “astral pepper” or any of half a dozen other brand names… that’s ground-up Solrock spikes.
Well, usually it is. Sometimes it’s finely-grated hard cheese mixed with yellow glitter. Reputable stores will always offer you a taste before you buy it.
Mature Solrock shed their spikes just after a solar maximum, which happens about once every eleven years, so the real stuff is hella expensive. But it tastes like the warmth of the sun on your face and childhood memories of summer – spicy and sweet and rich and savoury all at once, and only slightly hallucinogenic. In Fallarbor Town they break it out for special occasions, when they barbeque a whole Numel on a spit. The spice rub uses just half a teaspoon of Solrock dust, along with garlic powder, dried Cheri berries and Figy berries, a drop of numbing Seviper venom, smoky dried Nuzleaf leaves and plenty of salt; normally the basting sauce uses honey, soy sauce and Pomeg berry wine. Traditionally you’re only supposed to drink pure spring water from Meteor Falls with this dish, but… this is I Chews You; we can cheat a little bit and embrace the sun with a nice cold can of piña fraise (pineapple and strawberry) La Croix. Enjoy!
Lileep and Cradily are based on crinoid sea lilies, which are *clearly*, *obviously* plants, but somehow technically animals (they’re related to starfish and sea urchins). This makes Lileep really flexible for cooking, because it’s a vegetable that’s made of meat! The pink, cucumber-like fronds can be pickled with rice vinegar, soy sauce, sugar and black sesame (those are a key ingredient in the Hoennese fossil paella I made for the Anorith episode). The squishy purple outer body gets shredded, pulped and reconstituted into flat sheets. Those sheets are dried and toasted, and that’s how you get the distinctive salty-but-sweet purple nori you see in Hoennese sushi restaurants. Finally, Lileep doesn’t really have a skeleton or many internal organs, so pretty much everything in the “head” is good meat. You can just cut it into strips and let it sit with a basic garlic, ginger and Lum berry marinade before briefly searing it on a high heat. Then bring everything together: cover a sheet of Lileep nori in sticky rice, lay strips of Lileep meat and pickled fronds across the middle, add some pickled ginger and a tiny bit of super-spicy Spelon berry paste, then roll it all up and slice into sushi rounds. The truly discerning, of course, will pair such a light and healthy seafood dish only with a tall glass of bubbly, subtly sour lemon La Croix.
It can hardly have escaped the notice of the ICY crew that Makuhita looks exactly like a walking barbeque pork bun, so it should come as no surprise that there is a tradition, in both southern Hoenn and Alola, of decorating steamed buns to look like Makuhita faces. You can find these with a range of fillings – spicy barbeque Taillow, soy-ginger Corphish, sweet Mago berry paste, and in Alola, smoked Toxapex with caramelised onions and vinegar. BUT you never actually see them with a Makuhita filling. I guess making a bun that looks like a Pokémon and then stuffing it with that same Pokémon’s meat would be “weird” or “creepy” or something. Bunch of killjoys. But you know what they *do* make from Makuhita? Sausage. Makuhita is the “Guts Pokémon.” It has the Guts ability. This is a Pokémon with some high-quality guts: flexible, durable, with a really satisfying “snap” when you bite into them. And Makuhita’s high-energy sumo wrestler diet gives their meat a fatty and delicious wagyu-like quality; it really melts in your mouth. Chop up the meat, put it through a grinder, and mix in some olive oil, garlic, black pepper, salt, sugar, dried Breloom caps and a sharp cheese (in Hoenn you should go with Numel cheddar, if you can handle its distinctive fiery kick). Blend it all together in an electric mixer, with enough Pomeg berry wine to make everything sticky. Stuff the meat into a thoroughly cleaned and salted Makuhita intestine, pinch and tie off the individual sausages, then hang it all out to dry for a few hours. Then all you have to do is grill ’em and serve with some fried onions, your favourite barbeque sauce, and a refreshing can of – what else? – bold and tangy grapefruit La Croix.
[Written after the Feebas episode]
oh my god I didn’t have time to come up with a recipe this week because I had to travel for a friend’s wedding but the terrible “sea bass” jokes did it for me
John Hammond’s Chilean sea bass from Jurassic Park – a dish so popular it nearly drove the fish to extinction
All we have to do to recreate its breakout success is cook Feebas with as many different dinosaur Pokémon as possible! Pan-seared Feebas, with a Tropius fruit sauce, chopped Bayleef fronds, dried Grovyle leaves, Breloom caps sautéed with garlic, slivers of spicy Cranidos jerky and a sprinkle of crushed Aurorus crystals, all served on a Bastiodon shield platter. Mmm-mmm!
oh, and uh, I guess like a limoncello La Croix, maybe? Y’know, a little bit citrus-y, kinda classy, complex aftertaste.
Ah, Luvdisc, the Hoenn region’s timeless symbol of romantic love. As we all know, love can make you crazy, and Luvdisc doesn’t just inspire chocolate heart candies: that’s why today it is my pleasure to bring you the lunatic fever dream that is Luvdisc Rangoon. Shred some Luvdisc meat, then blend it with cream cheese, chopped Farfetch’d stalks, garlic powder and Worcestershire sauce. Roll the mixture into balls, fold up each one inside a wonton wrapper, and deep-fry them. Then, serve with sweet chilli sauce while they’re hot and crispy. This is not a traditional Hoennese dish. I don’t think anyone in Hoenn even knows what Luvdisc Rangoon is. Because there’s no such thing as “authentic” Luvdisc Rangoon, chefs can add almost anything to the filling, usually to make it more “tropical,” more “romantic,” or both – often at the expense of all common sense and human decency. The cream cheese can be sweetened with Roselia honey, and flavoured with berries or even chocolate. You might see coconut shavings in place of the Farfetch’d stalk, as well as finely chopped Pinap or Pomeg berries. You can also get Luvdisc Rangoon with chopped almonds, saffron, spicy Cheri berry paste, chopped olives – or, if your chef is truly deranged, all of the above. I recommend standing by with a watermelon La Croix in case you need to quickly wash away the culinary assault.
The great thing about cooking and eating Dragon-types like Shelgon is they’re full of sacred life energy, the holy essence of the living world itself. Gets you high as a kite the first time, let me tell you! The *other* great thing about Shelgon is you can literally just roast it whole in the shell. Dragon-types resist Fire, so you might need to turn up the heat a bit with some Torkoal coals or a Solrock oven or something, but basically you’re just roasting it for a couple of hours. The problem is you can’t actually *eat* the shell because it’s over an inch thick and has a texture more or less reminiscent of bone, covered in concrete. Obviously you can’t baste or glaze the outside, so to get some really nice flavours going, you gotta stuff the bastard thing. There’s a kind of bittersweet berry they have in Sinnoh, the Haban berry, that reacts with Dragon-type energies to enhance its flavour. What we’re gonna do is get like 8 of these, stuff the *berries* individually, then *double stuff* the Shelgon *with* the stuffed berries. Blend some cream cheese, Nomel berry zest, some Altaria feathers (which are, of course, made of cotton candy) and a little cinnamon. Cut the Haban berries open, scoop out some of the goop, then stuff ’em with the cream cheese mix. Pack Shelgon’s body cavity with stuffed berries, chopped red onions, garlic, breadcrumbs, the remaining Haban berry goop and a little oil. Then you just spit-roast it over an open fire for maybe 3 hours, crack the shell off with a jackhammer or something, and the meat should be falling right off the bone! Your La Croix pairing for this week is the lively and complex cerise limón (cherry and lime) flavour. Enjoy!
so if you google “cooking camel,” one of the results on the first page is a video titled “psycho cooks a whole camel & stabs it with a rose.” Whatever you’re imagining right now is probably better than the actual video and you shouldn’t watch it, but… it does remind me of this one obscure Central Hoennese recipe you should try for this episode: Roselia-stuffed Camerupt. Basically you’re chucking a whole Camerupt in a huge smoker for a few hours, after basting it with Roselia honey, rosewater, soy sauce, garlic and ginger. The stuffing uses 3 or 4 Roselia. Chop up the foliage, boil and mash the tuber-like body, then mix that up together with some dried Oddish leaves and a lot of garlic powder and paprika. As for the roses, coat them with flour, dried Cheri berry powder, cinnamon and black pepper. Deep fry them whole, then just shove ’em in with the rest of the Roselia stuffing. Now, the danger with cooking and eating Camerupt is that it might explode, covering you with molten lava. If you get covered in molten lava, you’re gonna have a bad time. To keep this from happening, you have to slowly and carefully drain the lava from its volcano humps before you start cooking. I recommend hitting them with a powerful Ice Beam to cool them down and reduce the pressure a little, then opening a vein with a diamond-tipped drill. Once that’s done, you can hollow out the humps and recycle them as serving bowls! And just on the off chance you *do* get drenched in molten lava, make sure you have a cooling beverage at the ready – such as a nice chilled berry La Croix.
well, Wynaut’s just, um…
…it’s just made of bubblegum, isn’t it? It’s just… blue bubblegum with like a liquorice tail.
I know I usually write more, and I know there’s a long-standing controversy around recipes that just presuppose a Pokémon is food, but… look at it!
oh, damn, almost forgot the La Croix pairing
what flavour of La Croix goes with blue bubblegum?
it’s gotta be coconut cola, right? Has to be; what *else* could it be?
Is there any food Pokémon more versatile than Torchic? Hoenn style fried Torchic, Torchikka masala, Oran Torchic on fried rice, whole Torchic baked in Barboach clay, Torchic boiled in Swalot venom (not for the faint-hearted). But one stands above them all…
The legendary Tortailblu, or “Hoennese turducken”: a Swablu stuffed inside a Taillow stuffed inside a Torchic. This is an extravagant dish; this is a dish you make to show off. There’s, like, one super fancy restaurant in Lilycove City where you can order this à la carte, but more likely this is something you’d ask a catering company to make for a fancy party – or do it yourself.
Step 1: pluck and debone all three birds. Stuff the Swablu with Shroomish truffles and soak it for 2 hours in Sinnohan Cherubi brandy – the good $#!t from the top shelf. (The traditional recipe uses Ludicolo champagne, which is made by grafting grapevines to a Ludicolo’s head so its party magic ferments the grapes on the vine… but let’s be real, sometimes you can’t get authentic Hoennese Ludicolo champagne at your local liquor store, y’know?)
Step 2: Stuff the Swablu inside the Taillow, filling any gaps with a mixture of breadcrumbs, ground Seedot and olive oil, liberally seasoned with paprika and black pepper.
Step 3: Slather the Taillow with a herb butter made with Grovyle and Nuzleaf leaves and garlic.
Step 4: Stuff the Taillow inside the Torchic, this time filling the gaps with diced Leppa and Aspear berries and ground Chesto berries.
Step 5: Poke cloves into the skin, then roast the whole monstrosity for about 3 hours, basting with honey, lemon juice and mustard.
If you’re serving this dish, either you have something pretty big to celebrate or you’re seducing someone. Ideally you’d crack open a bottle of Verdanturf Roselia wine (2003 was an excellent year), but failing that, there’s always passionfruit La Croix.
So, you want to cook the shapeless void? To gaze long into the abyss, as it gazes also into you, and to say with the conviction of one who knows the doom that lies beyond the veil: “that looks so fµ¢£in’ tasty” Only one dish can satisfy such grim, heretical desire: Duskull flambé.
First, prepare your ritual circle, using white chalk on a black surface to mark runes of gluttony and hedonism, as detailed in the Pokénomicon. Under a full moon, slice open your Duskull’s shroud with a sacrificial dagger. Put the mask aside for later, Duskull’s innards are made of shadows and death, but you can render them solid and edible by coating each piece in flour seasoned with dried goat’s blood, powdered black sesame, and the rind of the Kasib berry, which can force Ghost Pokémon into the physical world. The shroud is real, but its texture is leathery and it will need to be tenderised before you can cook it; I recommend a good hammering with a meat mallet before marinating it in lime juice, soy sauce and honey for an hour or so.
DO NOT LEAVE THE RITUAL CIRCLE AT ANY TIME
Sauté the innards and the shroud with black garlic, Pumpkaboo wedges and Dhelmise fronds. Then douse the whole pan in Chandelure oil and ignite it with any Pokémon’s Will’o’Wisp attack (ordinary fire will become cold and cursed upon direct contact with these ingredients). As the flames blaze, offer Duskull’s mask as a sacrifice to the Endless Void by placing it in a black velvet bag and crushing it with your left boot. That isn’t part of the dish, but if you don’t do it, you may die in mysterious circumstances 6 days, 6 hours and 6 minutes later. As soon as the flames die down, pour in some cream and stir vigorously until you get a rich sauce that glows with otherworldly blue light. Give thanks to the darkness, break the ritual circle, and serve with a bright, lively tangerine La Croix, to anchor your soul to this world.
Beware – most Pokémon you cook and eat will only “come back for revenge” in a metaphorical sense, if you use too much spice. Duskull will eventually reconstitute itself in the spirit world and pursue you for the rest of your life. Totally worth it though.
The wonderful thing about Claydol is that is head is clearly a tajine. I’m not saying if you cut off its head and open it up, you’ll literally find a delicious spicy stew inside, but you *will* get a fantastic earthenware pot. The conical shape of a tajine lid – or a Claydol head – is designed to help retain and circulate moisture for slowly cooking meat, so you end up with a nice juicy stew. This is perfect for a tough, gamey meat like Sandshrew that needs to cook for a long time and dries out easily. Combine that with some other flavourful desert ingredients: the fragrant flowers and sweet sap of Cacnea (or even a generous glug of Cacturne tequila for a boozy version), crunchy Trapinch shells, olive oil, plenty of chickpeas, tomatoes, butternut squash, Pomeg berries, and of course, don’t forget the spices: turmeric, ginger, cumin; international versions of this dish can use ground Maractus seeds, for their lively smoky-but-sweet flavour. Sweeten with a little Roselia honey, add plenty of water or Torchic stock, then just turn up the heat and leave it to stew. And what could go better with this taste of the desert than a refreshing can of múre pepino (cucumber & blackberry) La Croix?
What are we cooking, Whiscash? Whiscash are native to hot, dry northwest Hoenn, where traditional nomadic communities often have to travel long distances between sources of fresh water. You need to take a lot of food for treks like that – but fish goes bad real fast. What do? Answer: ferment it.
So the first thing you gotta do is drink, like, a whole glass of Cacturne tequila. That isn’t actually part of the recipe, it’s just really good. Debone your Whiscash and throw out the digestive tract, but keep all the other internal organs. It’s all going to turn into a disgusting brown slurry if you do it right anyway, and there’s important nutrients in the liver, heart and spleen (folklore has it that if you eat a lot of this stuff, you pick up some of Whiscash’s ability to sense earthquakes before they happen). Pack the meat and innards into jars (traditionally glazed ceramic – use a Claydol head if you’ve got one). Add some mashed Aspear, Pinap and Passho berries; this combination is intensely sour, but also quite fragrant, which you’ll need to offset the fermenting catfish. You’ll also need a *lot* of salt – roughly a 1:3 ratio by weight of salt to Whiscash. Then just load the jars up on a pack Numel or something, and set off wherever it is you’re going! Make sure the jars are covered securely, but open them every day to stir the mixture. After a good 3-4 weeks, the Whiscash guts will have broken down into a fairly uniform paste, which you can spread liberally over your carb of choice. It smells… pretty foul, but the complex salty and savoury taste is weirdly addictive, and it’s even better if you add some fried onions, a little cumin and oregano, and some roughly chopped Seedot. If you’re making this at home, have some more Cacturne tequila, but if you’re actually trekking across a desert, you probably shouldn’t waste water getting drunk. As such, you should instead indulge in that most traditional of north Hoennese beverages: a can of cold, sweet peach-pear La Croix.
Here’s the thing about Spinda. Every Spinda is unique. Well, maybe not *every* Spinda, but the Pokédex claims there are 4 billion different spot patterns, so… yeah, it’s pretty much every Spinda. But what does that mean if you want to *cook* Spinda?
Answer: It means that every Spinda tastes a little bit different. Spinda are the Bertie Bott’s Every-Flavour Beans of the Pokémon world. An incomplete list of documented Spinda flavours includes: vanilla, chocolate, peppermint, cardamom, cola, Oran berry, Razz berry, Nanab berry, Starf berry, Lansat berry, Snozz berry, balsamic vinegar, blue cheese, olive, fermented Whiscash, margherita pizza, roast beef, toffee apple, hot-smoked salmon, coconut milk, tomato ketchup, bird’s nest soup, Worcestershire sauce, Jägermeister, lavender, pork and apple sauce, sauerkraut, green tea, mayonnaise, horseradish, prawn cocktail, marmite, chicken-and-waffles, seaweed, sour milk, absinthe, ghost pepper, hemp, corn smut, sea salt, acorns, freshly cut grass, ozone, clay, soap, pine resin, sulphur, charcoal, human blood… and pumpkin spice. Obviously the only way to handle this is to get, like, two dozen Spinda and make a huge platter of tapas-style croquettes, meatballs and empanadas. That way, you and all your friends can try the whole range. Hopefully, everyone will find something they like! Obviously the La Croix pairing for this week is “pure” because frankly you’re going to need a palette cleanser after all that.
Season 3 Finale Drinks
Another season finale, another opulent Poké-feast that will go down in history as one of the most extravagant meals of all time! But all this delicious food is going to make us thirsty…
Obviously the drinks fridge at the I Chews You test kitchen is extremely well stocked with every flavour of La Croix known to science – but (and I know this will be a controversial statement) one cannot party on La Croix alone. We need alcomahol – and lots of it.
First, we need an aperitif, something that will complement Ben’s sides… like a Deoxys cocktail, or “Deoxtail”! Cooking a mysterious alien virus from space is obviously a dangerous proposition, but alcohol kills most viruses, so this is totally doable. Crack open the purple gusher in Deoxys’ chest and extract the thick viral syrup within. Mix this with twice the volume of a strong grain alcohol like Everclear, shake it up and let it sit for no less than 5 minutes, but no longer than 15. You want to kill enough virus to keep it from being a major biohazard, but not too much, or you’ll lose all the precious cosmic nightmare flavour! Once that’s done, mix it in a cocktail shaker with some lime La Croix, white curaçao and egg whites. Serve in martini glasses with a twist of orange, for a drink that will bring your guests face-to-face with humankind’s monumental insignificance in a vast, cold and uncaring universe! Also it tastes kind of spicy. Like it might try to kill you if only it were stronger.
To go with the appetisers: vintage Hoennese black Roselia wine. Roselia wine is made by adding Roselia petals to the grapes during crushing, and is usually sweetened with Roselia honey. It’s extremely fragrant and floral, like if an expensive perfume tasted as good as it smelled. Black Roselia wine is the rarest and most expensive, because it can only be made with flowers from a shiny Roselia. It has a deep, rich, sensual, almost chocolatey flavour profile, and an inky black colour that transports the drinker’s mind to the void.
We’re already breaking the bank with that Deoxys cocktail, let alone the black Roselia wine – so why stop now? Let’s pair the main course with a drink made from Soul Dew – the infinitely holy crystallised soul of a dead Latias or Latios! First, use a silver or platinum mallet to break open the crystalline shell of the Soul Dew. (This is technically an unforgivable blasphemy against every living Pokémon in the world: if that makes you uncomfortable, get a friend to do this part for you so it doesn’t count). Inside you’ll find a wispy, volatile fluid – collect this in some kind of vessel that can hold the blessed soul of a Dragon Pokémon. A consecrated cup or bowl made from carved Shelgon shell is probably the easiest to get. Once that’s done, crush the outer shell of the Soul Dew into a fine powder with your mallet. (To be honest, you can just snort the powder at this point, but this is I Chews You; we want to be at least a little bit classy) Stir the powder into the fluid soul-stuff. Then all you need to do is mix it up with hibiscus La Croix, Angostura bitters and lavender simple syrup, for a bittersweet and mournful drink with notes of blackberry, almonds and longing for immortality. Alcohol? Don’t need any – the base of this drink is already “spirits”!
Finally, a little digestif to serve after dessert: a Snorunt snowmelt liqueur. To make this, you basically pickle a whole Snorunt in alcohol, along with lots of sugar and a traditional Sinnohan herb bouquet that includes anise, thyme, shiso, coriander and orange blossom. Store the whole thing at just over freezing temperatures (~1º C or 34º F), and wait for the icy parts of the Snorunt’s body to melt. This will take several weeks, by which time the flavours should have had time to infuse. Strain out the herbs, throw away what’s left of the Snorunt, and the liqueur is ready to serve – always chilled, with a cube of Nevermeltice for best results. The main flavour from the Snorunt melt is sweet orange, but there’s also a complex herbal/liquorice undertone.
That’s it! Four potent drinks for a four-course meal for four excellent bois. Enjoy, and Merry Christmas (or happy Hannukah, or a general happy December solstice) to @ichewspod and all the other Chewsies!
Happy new year! And Psyduck is on the menu – well then, you simply have to try that most classic of Kanto recipes: Peking Psyduck. This is a dish that dates back hundreds of years, and every restaurant in Kanto insists that they have the one true authentic recipe. Basically you take the fattest Psyduck you can find, glaze it with soy sauce, five-spice and maltose syrup, hang it out to dry for a day or so, then roast it whole until the skin is crispy. Normally you serve thin slices in a pancake wrap with vegetables and a sweet sauce.
If you get Peking Psyduck in Saffron City, they’ll serve it with chopped Farfetch’d leeks, fresh cucumber and a Lum Berry sauce. In Celadon, you’re more likely to see shredded Oddish leaves, a dusting of Stun Spore powder and Pecha berries soaked in Weepinbell acid. On Cinnabar Island, chefs smoke their Peking Psyduck. Supposedly they used to do this over molten lava flows, but the fumes would’ve made the meat taste pretty funky, so that’s probably a myth. The modern smoked Psyduck goes pretty well with pickled Tangela fronds, though. In Pewter City, Peking Psyduck is glazed with maple syrup, then served with mashed Diglett, Paras shrooms and a paste made from spiced Exeggcute curd – that last part is… an acquired taste. But make sure you don’t miss Lavender Town, where Peking Psyduck is infused with fragrant incense as it dries, and served with a rich, dark nightshade sauce that usually won’t kill you if the chef is up to scratch. Less traditional, but still a great pairing with any variety of Peking Psyduck, is a chilled can of refreshing hibiscus La Croix. Enjoy!
Who wants some hot, nutritious, flavourful bone broth? Essential for growing boys like yourselves; really puts hairs on your chest. Just boil some Cubone skull helmets and bone clubs in a big pot of water, with a splash of vinegar and plenty of salt. The only tricky part is, you have to boil them for three days to break down the marrow and extract all the nutrients. Keep a lid on the pot so you don’t lose too much water (this would be a good time to break out your trusty Claydol head tajine) and take turns adjusting the heat. Bone broth is rich in protein, and Cubone bones are the best because of their magical connection to the strength of Cubone’s ancestors. Drink a cup of hot bone broth with dinner every day if you’re trying to bulk up, or use it as the base for your favourite Kantonian soup recipe. For me, that means diced Diglett, thin slices of barbeque marinated Slowpoke tail, chopped Farfetch’d leeks, fresh Oddish greens, lots of garlic and some spicy Spelon Berry paste. And if you’re still thirsty, you can always wash it down with a refreshing tangerine La Croix.
this recipe is bad and you shouldn’t use it at home
BUT if we’re doing classic Johto dishes that I Chews You missed on the first pass… there’s no getting around it; we have to do sour Miltank udders.
If that sounds bad, don’t worry; it gets so much worse.
This is an Olivine City “delicacy” (and I use that word very loosely) where they basically pickle Miltank udders in Miltank milk. First, clean the udders, salt them and smoke them for a couple of hours. While that’s happening, heat the milk almost to a boil, to kill microbes. Some traditional farms don’t do this. Avoid them like the plague. Cool the milk and add sugar and some pickling spices; cinnamon, chilli, mustard, powdered Oran Berry, ground Heracross horn, Pineco shavings… whatever; throw in anything, it’s not going to taste good anyway.
Add a cup of vinegar to the milk. Yes, it will immediately curdle. That’s part of it. I warned you. This is like making cheese, and you also introduce cheese fermenting bacteria here, but instead of separating the curds and whey, you just… fµ¢£in’… drop the udders in, then seal it in a barrel for a month. Flip the barrel over three times a day so the curds don’t all just settle on the bottom. A month later, when you fish out the udders, the fermentation should have taken them from rubbery to… kinda gelatinous. They taste like yoghurt flavoured with raw beef. There should also be a… meaty, cheesy residue. This is supposedly edible. This dish is often served with Bellossom tubers, roasted Skiploom, crispy Yanma wings, or fried Tauros testicles (those are actually surprisingly good). Your La Croix pairing this week is…
…fµ¢£ it, just get a bottle of the cheapest, strongest Hoppip whiskey you can find; that’s what everyone else drinks with this $#!t.
In New Zealand we have this thing called a whitebait fritter, which is made from the tiny juveniles (or “whitebait”) of this fish called an inanga. It’s an easy and beloved national dish, so I’d like to share a version with a Johtoan twist: Woopbait fritters.
You need to catch yourself a whole mess of tiny, newly-hatched Wooper tadpoles in a big net as they swim upstream. You want to get them when they’re so young that they’re only a few inches long and their skin is clear like glass, and you’re trying to catch dozens at a time. Once you have your Woopbait, beat some eggs and just mix them in whole – head, gills, tail and all. The meat is extremely tender and even the bones are so fine that no preparation is needed; just throw the whole thing in. Season the mixture with salt and pepper, then fry spoonfuls of it in butter. Cook each fritter for a couple of minutes on each side, then serve them with a squeeze of lemon juice, maybe a sprig of parsley if you’re feeling fancy – and, of course, an ice cold lemon La Croix.
Here’s the thing about cooking Nosepass: eating magnets is really dangerous. If you have two separate chunks of magnet in your guts, they can attract each other and rip through the walls of your intestine. This, as many important doctors have said, would be bad. But if you’re cooking and eating Nosepass, you want that magnetic power. You want to consume the magnet, absorb the magnet, become the magnet, BE the magnet. Obviously we need a special cooking technique that will distill Nosepass’s magnetism into a form we can safely devour.
Start by crushing Nosepass’s gigantic red magnetic schnozz into a fine powder, using first a hammer, then a mortar and pestle. RESIST THE OVERWHELMING TEMPTATION TO SNORT THE NOSE DUST. Using the liquid metal from the body of a Meltan, and some heat if needed, dissolve the nose. This thick metallic fluid will serve as the base for our sauce. Season it with salt, pepper, cloves, allspice, dried coconut and just a dash of copper filings. Next, using an industrial marble-cutting saw, carve the rest of your Nosepass’s body into steaks, about 1.5 cm thick. Liberally baste the Nosepass steaks with your magnetic sauce, then roast them at 600 ºC (about 1100 ºF) until they’re tender, which should be about a week. Baste them again every morning so all the flavours properly infuse the tough, stoney meat! Serve the steaks with more of the sauce, some tropical fruits like pineapple and mango, fried in butter, and a refreshing can of “Pure” La Croix.
Warning: For about a month after eating this dish, you will be unable to turn your face away from magnetic north. Your body may also attract small iron or steel objects like nails and cutlery. So… maybe stay out of the kitchen for a while.
Grovyle leaves are a beloved herb for their distinctive fresh, spicy flavour – somewhere between black pepper, mint and lime zest. They flavour classic Hoennese dishes like Torchic katsu, Swablu wing soup, Makuhita dumplings, cream of Shroomish soup, the list goes on. Grovyle meat is less popular, because Grovyle is a very active Pokémon and that tends to make the meat quite tough and stringy, but you can slow-cook it.
What they do in Fortree City is make a wrap from woven Grovyle leaves and stuff it with stewed Grovyle meat. Simply chop the meat into bite-sized chunks and throw it in a pot with some water and a pile of other ingredients: carrots, potatoes, onions, garlic, crushed Sceptile seed pods. Cook for a couple of hours, then fry some rice and make a nice salsa of Pinap, Lum and Razz Berries. The tricky part is weaving the Grovyle leaves into a sheet that you can roll up with all the fillings inside like a burrito. You could just use Tropius wings instead, but there’s something special about the braided look and texture – and they taste great with a mango La Croix.
This week we’re cooking Trapinch, and Trapinch lives in a hole in the ground. This actually gives me an opportunity to evangelise some New Zealand culture – by cooking Trapinch in its own pit trap, using a Māori roasting technique known as hāngī.
First, dig a pit. Luckily, Trapinch has done that for us, so we’re ahead already! Then pile alternating layers of wood and stones into the pit. Light a fire on top to burn for at least an hour – the wood will burn and the stones will absorb the heat, becoming red-hot. While that’s happening, season a couple of Trapinch with salt and herb butter, using some of our favourite Hoennese herbs like Nuzleaf and Grovyle leaves, and maybe some dried Cheri berries for spice. Wrap them up in some big Tropius leaves and tie the packages with string. Finally, line a space in the middle of the pit with damp sack-cloth (to keep the dirt out and create steam), throw in the Trapinch and some Diglett potatoes, and bury everything. This traps heat from the stones and steam from the damp cloth, cooking the food slowly and gently. After 4 hours cooking underground, dig everything up, unwrap the food and enjoy your perfectly slow-roasted, tender and succulent Trapinch – cooked in its own trap. Your La Croix pairing this week is limoncello, just because Evan trashed it in the Grovyle episode and he’s wrong.
Some pronunciation notes: Māori is two syllables, not three (something like mah-ree or moh-ree, NOT may-or-ree) The ng in hāngī is a soft sound as in “singing”, not a hard g-sound as in “anger” Also hāngī is the technique, the pit itself is an umu (oo-moo)
Who needs a fancy recipe for cooking and eating Slowpoke, when you can just chew on a delicious, not-at-all-nutritious Slowpoke tail? Kick back, relax and just savour this sweet, chewy treat all afternoon as you stare out over a peaceful lake, contemplating existence.
On the other hand, this is I Chews You: cooking Pokémon is serious business! The Pokédex tells us that in Alola, people take dried Slowpoke tails and simmer them in “a salty stew,” while in Galar, Slowpoke’s regional form has a spicy taste to its tail from eating Galarica nuts. We even have an Alolan stew recipe from Mallow’s trial in the Lush Jungle on Sun & Moon: sweet Mago Berries, Tiny Mushrooms, a little bitter Revival Herb and a Miracle Seed. So who’s up for some fusion cooking? Let’s make an Alolan Slowpoketail stew with some Galarian flavours.
First, fry some Galarian Farfetch’d leek, garlic and a medley of Paras and Morelull caps. Chop up the Mago Berries and throw it all in a pot, along with the Revival Herb, a crushed Miracle Seed, a cup of Tauros stock, and of course a pound of smoked, dried Galar Slowpoke tails. Normal Slowpoke tails are quite sweet and Galarian ones are spicy, so we’ll balance it with sweet-and-spicy Galarica honey and diced Appletun (with the back skin – which the Pokédex tells us is delicious). Bring to a boil and simmer for an hour or so until it’s nice and thick. Serve with sticky rice and garnish with a handful of chopped, roasted Galarica nuts – and, of course, a chilled can of tropical mango La Croix. Happy hundredth episode, love to all the boixs, and here’s to a hundred more!
I’m sure you’ve already found this fantastic resource in your research for cooking and eating Glameow: http://coffeemachinecuisine.com/cook-cat-coffee-maker/…
The Pokémon world has coffee – they serve it in Alolan Pokémon Centres – but there isn’t really a coffee Pokémon, so probably the best way to adapt this recipe is by cooking your Glameow stew in a Polteageist pot. Make sure you get the curly tail – that’s where the flavour is!
Have Polteigest use Will’o’Wisp to fry your Glameow meat with garlic and onions, add some Galarian curry roux and chopped Galarica nuts for spice, then pour in some cream and a generous glug of top-shelf Sinnohan Cherubi wine. Slap the lid on, then simmer the stew for two hours.
Of course, nothing goes better with cat than dog, so throw in some chopped Yamper sausage as well for a bit of Electric-type zing. And to complete the Sinnoh/Galar fusion cuisine feel we’ve got going here, sprinkle some fresh Leafeon leaves over the stew just before serving. Cooking in a Polteageist pot has a tendency to add a slight… death-y taste to the food, so it might be a good idea to pair this with a lively, happy La Croix flavour like “beach plum” (one of 2021’s three new flavours that I’m sure will receive a La Croix Boix segment soon).
Drapion isn’t a Pokémon you go out of your way to cook and eat. It’s big, tough, mean, poisonous and just deeply unpleasant. It will ambush and attack you when you try to cross the desert in its territory. Even in a cool, wet region like Sinnoh, with no deserts, Drapion adapts to live in swamps, just so it can continue to be a jerk to you. With no regard for ecological plausibility, it will happily live anywhere that humans find difficult or dangerous, working tirelessly and often sadistically to make the situation worse for everyone.
Obviously, the main reason any of us should want to cook or eat Drapion is simply: revenge.
And this is what they do in Pastoria City, or at least what they used to do back in the savage old days of pitchfork justice. This is actually why Pastoria Gym’s signature move is Scald: when a Drapion became notorious for attacking caravans or killing travellers, they would go out and boil the awful thing alive with their Water Pokémon, then hack it into bits and flash-freeze the pieces with Ice Beam to keep it fresh so they could eat it over the next month. Just like king crabs’ shells turn orange when you boil them, and lobsters turn red, Drapion’s carapace becomes shocking pink. When you scoop the meat out, it’s very soft and has a pretty subtle flavour, so you shouldn’t overpower it with lots of spice or rich sauces. You can make a simple dipping sauce by mixing a few drops of Drapion’s own sharp, astringent venom from the tail into some melted butter (traditionally Bibarel butter, since Miltank aren’t native to Sinnoh, but you can use whatever you have). Serve with fried wild rice, a fried Exeggcute, some blanched Carnivine tendrils and a couple of Nomel Berry wedges (like a slightly spicy lemon). The traditional Pastoria beverage is swamp water filtered through Hippopotas sand, but for modern palates I suggest the subtle freshness of watermelon La Croix.
The thing about cooking and eating Hippowdon is the sand. So much sand. It’s coarse and rough and irritating, and it gets everywhere. If you don’t cook Hippowdon right, you’ll be picking sand out of your teeth (and potentially… other orifices) for weeks.
You might think you can just hang a Hippowdon carcass upside down and the sand will drain out of the vents on its back. Rookie mistake. There are glands and cysts inside its body that are full of sand. You need to learn to identify and remove them without slicing them open. It’s like being a fugu chef and learning to cut out the poisonous bits of a pufferfish, but instead of dying if you get it wrong, you just get a big mouthful of sand.
Assuming you don’t screw this up, you can then carve up Hippowdon and just cook it like a tough cut of beef. Tenderise thoroughly with a Metang-steel mallet; marinate for a couple of hours in Cherubi wine with Combee honey, garlic, mustard, black pepper and cinnamon; then cook it low and slow. Serve your Hippowdon steaks with Diglett roasted in Bidoof fat and a side of Grotle greens. Hippowdon is tricky to prepare but rewarding, with a rich yet gamey flavour, more earthy than Donphan and less tangy than Excadrill, that pairs well with a creamy, lightly spiced béchamel sauce. If you get it right, make sure to reward yourself with a refreshing apricot La Croix.
You want to cook and eat Regigigas? You know there’s only one of those, right? In… the world, I think? I mean, I’ll do it, obviously; I just think we need to take a moment to acknowledge the cosmic significance of this never-to-be-repeated meal.
In recognition of Regigigas’ special status as the king of golems, I propose we cook the different parts of its body with methods and ingredients that pay tribute to its five legendary creations: Regice, Regirock, Registeel, Regieleki and Regidrago. First, in memory of Regice, we drain Regigigas’ divine life-giving blood and mix it into a cocktail, to be served in goblets of pure ice. Add a measure of fine Cherubi wine, a hint of Combee Drambuie, a wisp of Spiritomb soul-fire and, of course, top it off with berry La Croix.
To honour Regirock, we crush Regigigas’ mineral-rich bones in a colossal stone mortar, grinding the giant’s bones to make our bread – fee fi fo fum. Mix the bonemeal with flour, water, a pinch of salt and some ground Sudowoodo stone-herbs. You’ll need a stronger rising agent than normal yeast for this supernatural bone dough – I suggest a sourdough starter grown from Shiinotic spores, which will give the bread a pleasing glow and some mild psychoactive properties.
In homage to Registeel, we’ll slow-cook Regigigas’ legs in a steel pressure cooker for 10,000 years. …okay, maybe 10,000 seconds (just under 3 hours). Throw in some Combee honey, garlic, onion, Applin vinegar, and liquid Magmortar smoke, then just leave it to stew.
As a tribute to Regieleki, we will fry Regigigas’ shoulders and arms with sheer electrical current. Apply a spice rub of chilli powder, sumac, lemon zest and mashed Wacan Berries, which can absorb Electric-type attacks to produce a delicious sweet-and-sour taste. Plug an Electivire into each arm, then Thunderbolt them at maximum power to get a crispy lightning-charred skin with a succulent rare interior.
Last, but most certainly not least, to show our respect for Regidrago, we can carve up Regigigas’ torso with a dragon-bone knife. Half of the meat from the torso should be offered raw as a sacrifice to any Dragon Pokémon in your area. The rest, you can cover in salt mixed with crushed Dragonair crystals, then leave to cure for a few months, allowing the life energy from the crystals to seep into the meat.
Also, as long as we’re here, we may as well use that green moss on Regigigas’ back and feet. I dunno if I’d trust it as a straight herb, but I bet it’d make a pretty trippy absinthe – and if the taste is too strong, you can always temper it with some grapefruit La Croix.
A glorious day is upon us, the day we cook and eat the greatest memelord in all of Pokémon: Bidoof. Today I have for you no exotic cooking techniques, no secret ingredients: only one precious fragment of knowledge. And that is that beaver ass is vanilla flavoured.
(I’m just going to leave that statement hanging there; I’m sure you’ve probably discovered this yourselves already – but if you haven’t, GOOGLE IT NOW; YOU CANNOT HIDE FROM THE COSMIC TRUTH)
It follows, with an elegant inevitability, that the first vanilla ice cream in the Pokémon world was not made from the cool soft-serve bodies of Vanillite, nor from Miltank milk and Swirlix sugar flavoured with some obscure berry, nor even from the creamy body of Alcremie. Vanilla ice cream in the Pokémon world is made from Bidoof and Bibarel milk, naturally flavoured by just… generously dunking Bidoof’s whole butt in it. And of course, the only way to truly enjoy a scoop of rich Bidoof vanilla ice cream is in a cherry La Croix float.
(P.S. The drink that, in America, you call an ice cream or soda “float,” we in New Zealand call a “spider,” as in a “coke spider.” No, I don’t know why.)
Rotom’s really a Pokémon that you cook with, in the normal course of events – stick it in your microwave, and your $#!tty instant noodles will come out like authentic Sinnohan street food every time. But say, for the sake of argument, you want to eat Rotom itself. What you need to do is convince Rotom to possess something edible. Normally Rotom can only inhabit mechanical things, so: what do? Answer: get creative with culinary gold.
Gold is chemically inert, which makes it perfectly safe to eat if it’s beaten into thin enough foil. Start with a recipe for a layered food like a lasagna, baklava or even just a club sandwich. While preparing it, use an elaborate tracery of gold leaf to create a circuit-board design on each layer. The more complex the design and the more layers you use, the better. When it’s finished, coax Rotom to possess your lasagna by sticking a couple of jumper cables into it to provide some electricity. If necessary, perform an exorcism on your dishwasher or whatever, to force Rotom out of its current abode. You can now eat Rotom! Its presence lends food a fascinating electrical zing that will put a spring in your step all day. Be warned, however, that if you use this recipe, Rotom will still be alive when you eat it, and your meal may try to float away or spit its filling at you.
Also, if you have a pacemaker or similar medical implant, Rotom may take over it and attempt to exact its revenge by stopping your heart. To guard against this possibility, I advise pairing this meal with the cleansing, spiritually balancing power of a can of “pure” La Croix.
So here’s the thing; my search history now contains the phrase “how to cook penguin” and I don’t think there’s any way back from that. Some acts permanently stain the soul. Luckily, this is ICY, where penguins are not even in the top ten cutest things on the menu.
Let me paint you a picture. You go to Lake Acuity, in north Sinnoh. It’s cold as fµ¢£. A Snover has eaten your shirt and a Sneasel has stolen your pants. You ate your last Fire Pokémon days ago. You ask a Meditite to share some food, and it gives you a single frozen Occa Berry. Night is falling. Snowpoint City is, like, 30 minutes away on foot, but you’re way too proud to ask those hicks for help. All of a sudden, you encounter these big, fat, flightless bird Pokémon who don’t seem bothered by the cold at all. All their blubber must keep them warm.
And if you don’t see where I’m going with this, you are not the kind of person who has ever Googled “how to cook penguin.”
You go full Han-Solo-and-Luke’s-tauntaun on that $#!t. Just fµ¢£in’ slice a Prinplup’s belly open and climb inside so the heat from its guts keeps you warm. If you survive the night, you can build a crappy little fire to cook the best bits of Prinplup’s guts. According to polar explorers, you should stew the heart and liver. I recommend seasoning with garlic, cinnamon, pepper and a splash of Cherubi brandy, like a delicate pâté (obviously you have a selection of spices with you – yeah, you just slept inside the carcass of a cute penguin Pokémon, but you’re not a fµ¢£ing savage). And naturally, you also have with you a warming taste of the tropics in the form of a refreshing can of mango La Croix.
okay genuinely though, wtf did I just write
listen I don’t want to harsh your vibes but this one makes no fµ¢£ing sense
Say for the sake of argument that you have a Bronzong and you need food. Here is an incomplete list of more useful things you could do than trying to cook and eat a massive bronze bell:
1. Use Bronzong’s weather control powers to help grow your crops, ensuring that your entire family eats well for the whole year.
2. Turn Bronzong upside down and use it as a cooking pot (something it can do better than any other Steel Pokémon thanks to the Heatproof ability).
3. Melt down your Bronzong into raw copper, use the copper to mint some coins and just buy a fµ¢£ing Hippowdon steak.
4. Use Bronzong’s Hypnosis to not only trick people into giving you THEIR food, but potentially brainwash them into bringing you more food every day forever.
5. Drop Bronzong on a wild Pokémon’s head like Wile E. Coyote dropping a fµ¢£ing anvil so you can eat THAT Pokémon instead (again, Bronzong has an ability that makes it very good at this, Heavy Metal, which raises its weight to nearly 400 kilograms).
6. Bronzong can learn Trick. Literally just steal $#!t. Wild Pokémon have berries. Fµ¢£ing take them.
7. Have Bronzong pose as a fire alarm in an office building, and fake a fire drill. When the workers leave the building, go to the break room fridge and steal everyone’s lunch.
and finally, 8. Use Bronzong as a drinking cup when you try the new “Guava São Paulo” flavour of La Croix.
So. Stunky. We’re going to cook and eat a Pokémon whose main feature is that it smells absolutely fµ¢£ing rancid, unbelievably foul, like vomit and rotting fish and an open sewer and… truly just anything else you can think of. If it smells disgusting, it’s in there. Now, you *can* painstakingly butcher Stunky to remove the scent glands without breaking them open and drenching all the meat in awful stink juice. If ya go to south Sinnoh, sometimes they dry this stuff for jerky, or roast chunks on a skewer – but not often, because it’s $#!t. Stunky are kinda small and skinny and stringy, and there’s just not a lot of good meat on them… it’s just deeply not worth it. Mostly people only bother to prepare them like this when there’s no other food left and they’re reduced to eating dried Glameow tails and $#!t. We’re not gonna do that. This is I Chews You. We’re all about the gourmet $#!t. If you’re cooking Stunky you’ve gotta embrace the stink.
Carefully extract the scent glands, just like before, but this time, put on a heavy-duty gas mask and bottle the disgusting garbage-liquor (if at any point you spill any of the raw fluid… look, just burn your clothes and move to a different postcode; you’re never going to get the smell out). Age it for at least a month in a cool dry place, then take one drop and mix it into a litre of water. Diluted by a factor of 20,000, this stuff is still pretty scary, but a discerning palette can begin to appreciate complex notes of onion, mustard, horseradish, leek and ginger. That leaves you with, basically, a pungent but sophisticated stock that you can use in a variety of savoury sauces and marinades. Barbeque Bidoof rolls, Hippowdon steaks, fried Croagunk legs, Gabite fin soup, it works with everything. And yeah… yeah, you can marinate your goddamn scraps of $#!tty chewy Stunky meat in it, then mix a few spoonfuls into a spicy Cheri Berry sauce or something, serve it with some white rice and… I dunno, like a lemon La Croix or something, I don’t even give a $#!t anymore.
Starly doesn’t have any freaky anatomy or elemental powers, so you can kinda cook it any way you want. In Sinnoh they do a style of fried Starly called zangi, where it’s marinated in a sweet soy-and-ginger sauce, covered in Diglett starch, then deep-fried. But Starly are also naturally found in Kalos, and the Kalosians… they turn that $#!t up to 11.
Here’s what you gotta do. Put your Starly in a tiny cage, like so tiny it can hardly move and can’t stretch its wings. Keep it in a dark place, like a cupboard. Then feed it. Feed this Starly on the tastiest berries you can find, for six weeks. The prolonged darkness triggers Starly’s instinct to fatten itself up for winter migration, so it’ll eat anything you put in front of it and never stop, getting fatter and more delicious by the day. Once Starly reaches critical mass, drown it in a jar in top-shelf Sinnohan Cherubi brandy. Let it marinate in the brandy for a few hours, then roast the bird whole.
That’s it. That’s the entire recipe. Serve it whole, eat it whole, starting from the feet, leaving only the beak. Traditionally you’re supposed to cover your head with a napkin while eating – some say this is so other diners don’t have to watch you spit out the bones, others that it keeps the aroma of the brandy from escaping, others that it protects you from the disapproving stare of God. The truth is that the napkin prevents adult Staraptor from seeing what you’re doing and dive-bombing the $#!t out of you. Trust me, once one of those birds wants you dead, your life is gonna change – so savour what might be your last meal alongside a cold cherry & lime La Croix.
Disclaimer: this recipe is actually illegal in Kalos now because the technique is so cruel, but because it was never a traditional dish in Sinnoh, no one’s ever seen the need to outlaw it. I’m just sayin’, there’s a business opportunity there that no-one’s spotted yet.
P.S. This is a real French recipe for cooking a bird called an ortolan, which is the culinary equivalent of pure Colombian white heroin. It’s prepared only by black market chefs for exclusive high-society dinners, and is described by diners as a transcendent religious experience.
Normally for my Pokémon recipes I try to think about what the traditional recipes and local specialties might be in the regions where that Pokémon naturally lives. But Shieldon’s been extinct for 100 million years – there are no traditional recipes for Shieldon. So I did what any sane person would, and asked an AI to generate ideas for cooking Shieldon. From its wisdom, I learned that “many have referred to Shieldon as a pizza-alligator.” Now I just had to figure out why. Shieldon skulls have a big, round, heavy, curved stone shield.
Even though there are no living wild Shieldon, people in Sinnoh have been digging up preserved Shieldon skulls for hundreds of years. And it’s well known that the shield makes a really good pizza pan. Make an ordinary pizza dough; let it rise, roll it out, apply your toppings. Heat up your Shieldon shield over an open fire and lay your pizza over the convex face. The dense organic rock stores heat really well, but is also porous enough to absorb moisture and ventilate the underside of the pizza to get it nice and crispy – nature’s perfect pizza stone.
In the modern world, we can turn fossils back into living Shieldon – so the latest trend is to make the pizza alligator into the star topping for its own pizzas. In Oreburgh City they do a style of meat-lovers pizza with Shieldon pepperoni, Shieldon jerky and Shieldon bratwurst. The base sauce combines tomato paste with soy sauce and black vinegar, then you just pile up the Shieldon meats with some garlic and hot peppers, and smother everything in a soft Bibarel cheese. For this week’s La Croix pairing, I recommend a tangy grapefruit. Bon appetit!
(Also, for posterity, here is everything I managed to get the demo writing AI at https://app.inferkit.com/demo to tell me about Shieldon)
A simple recipe this week, because the fun thing about Floatzel is that it comes with its own sausage casing, in the form of that inner tube thing that loops around its shoulders. It’s a bit tough and rubbery, but you can fix that with a good old soy vinegar marinade. Flavour some Floatzel mince with oran berry zest, spicy cheri berry paste, some peppery dried Carnivine leaves, garlic and a generous helping of salt, then just stuff it all into your sausage casing and hang it out to dry for a few weeks till you get a nice spicy Floatzel salami. Floatzel are found all over Sinnoh, and every town has its own recipe – this is a middle-of-the-road Jubilife City version that goes great in a charcuterie board with a rich Bibarel brie, pickled sour Cherubi, dried Shellos wafers, whole fried Skorupi and a nice orange La Croix.
Of Gastrodon, the UltraSun Pokédex tells us: “When it’s attacked, it gushes a purple liquid that’s not poisonous but makes Gastrodon’s meat bitter and inedible.” On the one hand, this tells us that Pokéverse humans canonically HAVE tried to cook and eat Gastrodon. On the other hand… well, that’s it, right? “Bitter and inedible.” We can’t cook this one. We’ve been beaten. Time to pack it in and go home.
Sure, Gastrodon’s inedible for those soft, pampered Alolans in their tropical paradise islands, with their luxury fruit salads and their malasadas and their Araquanid gin (that’s one for season 7). But Sinnohans are tougher than that. Sinnohans take what they can fµ¢£in’ get.
In Sinnoh, they age and cure Gastrodon meat. Save all the purple gunk and mix it with Combee honey, black pepper, dried Breloom caps and a mash of some of the common ‘bitter’ berries like Rawst, Kelpsy and Aguav. They also have this, like, sourdough-starter stuff that they add to get the right kind of bacterial growth. I dunno where it comes from. It smells like a Lucario’s armpit; for all I know it may *be* gunk from a Lucario’s armpit. Whatever. In it goes. Seal the meat in bags of the curing mixture, then store it in a cold place for at least a month. Over time, the bitterness mellows out and a whole range of other fungal, mushroom-y, cheesey flavours start to develop. Then you can smoke the meat over a bed of Abomasnow chips.
After all that… look, I’m gonna be honest, it still tastes pretty fµ¢£ing foul, but in a *sophisticated* way – y’know, like how beer is obviously disgusting but lots of people enjoy it because they taste all kinds of subtleties in their gross mouldy bread water. The best part is, Gastrodon can completely regenerate even after being cut in half. You can just keep the same herd of Gastrodon and chop bits off them every week. They probably won’t even hate you for it, because Gastrodon don’t really have brains; they’re dumb as hell. The traditional Sinnohan beverage pairing for smoked aged Gastrodon is this extremely potent liqueur they make from Abomasnow resin and about 16 different herbs, but it’s a bit of an acquired taste, so maybe just stick to a kiwi and watermelon La Croix.
Really seems like a shame to cook and eat Munchlax when we could be enlisting it in the quest to cook and eat every *other* Pokémon. Still… I guess the temptation of those rich, fatty ribs and flanks is just too much to resist (why do you think they’re so rare?). You’ve gotta be careful with Munchlax, though, because it will eat *anything*, including a lot of stuff that’s toxic to humans and can linger in its body. It’s best not to cook a Munchlax unless you know exactly what it’s been eating, which pretty much rules out wild ones.
Anyway, the tricky thing with Munchlax is that basically every cut of meat is super fatty, even ones you’d normally think of as lean, like sirloin, so there’s no point stewing or braising it. Munchlax is almost always pan-fried or grilled, with little seasoning or spice. Traditionally in Sinnoh you’re supposed to feed them on a mix of berries, then let the flavour of the meat speak for itself, with just a pinch of salt. But, y’know, screw those guys. I like my Munchlax steaks with a hot Hoennese spice rub and lashings of Unovan barbeque sauce.
And yeah, you can spring for a super-expensive 2007 Cherubi wine, or even a 30-year Snowpoint City bourbon aged in an Abomasnow cask, but you know what’s just as good as those? Cherry and lime La Croix. (this was a lie, cherry and lime La Croix is not as good as those)
there’s a whole story behind this one
’cause if you want to eat Gallade, the Pokémon knight, there’s only one way to do it and only one place to go, but you’ve got to do exactly as I say.
Go to Hearthome City, in central Sinnoh. On a Friday evening, after 8 pm, go to the night markets on the lower east side and look for the signs for a stall called “The Bloated Munchlax.” Ask for Jimmy “the Walrein” Kawasaki. Tell him I sent you. If he asks about the money, tell him it ain’t about the frickin’ money. Tell Jimmy the Walrein you want the soup of the day. He’ll say they ain’t got no soup of the day. Tell him, well, you want the soup of the evening, then. If Jimmy knows what’s good for him, he’ll bring you each a bowl of Gallade fin soup. And, I dunno, some snacks I guess.
This is a soup made from the cranial blades, pectoral blades and cheek fins of Gallade – skinned, boiled down to the cartilage and shredded so they look like noodles. The fins have almost no taste, but their texture is unique – somehow chewy and crunchy and gooey all at once. The actual flavour of the soup comes from the broth, which is made from simple Starly stock and Bidoof stock, seasoned with soy sauce, dried Shellder tongues, Combee honey, spicy Cheri Berry paste, a little Cherubi wine, ground Gabite horn and some dried Breloom caps. The fins thicken the soup and, again, provides that unique snap-pop-crunch which is basically this dish’s whole deal. It’s traditionally served with a whole boiled Happiny egg, but Jimmy’s a cheapskate so you’ll probably get it with a Murkrow egg, or even a live Exeggcute.
Supposedly the soup gives you the strength, courage and skill of an actual Gallade, although if Jimmy is anything to go by, I have my doubts. Anyway, they serve this at initiation dinners for the Sinnoh mob, ’cause that way everyone who eats it has done something incriminating.
what, you thought this $#!t was legal?
I send you to get soup from a guy called Jimmy the fµ¢£in’ Walrein who keeps asking about “the money”; what part of this transaction did you think was fµ¢£in’ legal?
btw tell him to leave “the stuff” in “the usual place”
They get the fins by just hacking them off a live Gallade and leaving the poor thing to bleed out; this $#!t’s the most illegal dish there is. Sinnoh regional government’s been trying to stamp it out for decades.
fµ¢£in’ tasty though; you gotta give ’em that
They don’t even have La Croix at Jimmy’s place for the drinks pairing, that’s how illegal this is. Good news, though; I’m pretty sure they serve that weird sparkling vinegar $#!t you were drinking in the last episode; may as well grab a case while you’re there.
Today is a great new frontier in the history – and indeed meta-history – of cuisine. Today is, in fact, the day that the word “history” ceases to have meaning. Because today is the day we cook and eat Dialga – the immortal time dragon of holy Mount Coronet. As a Pokémon lore heretic, I think it’s somewhat ambiguous whether Dialga controls and embodies time itself, or just has some cool time powers. Either way, cooking it is a mission, but “ambiguous” means it’s at least possible we can eat it without imploding the entire universe.
Because of the unusual nature of the Pokémon we’re cooking, the order of today’s recipe may seem a little confusing. Don’t worry – it’ll make sense once you start.
First, you’ll want to sleep off the huge meal you haven’t eaten yet, and clean the dishes you haven’t used yet. Ideally, you should start marinating your Dialga before doing anything else – and I mean *anything* else. A few months ago will do, but it’s best if you can get a message back to your parents before you were born so they can have been going to start the process for you. The marinade has some pricey ingredients – 2037 Roselia wine (it will have been a very good year), a pinch of diamond dust, a dash of Kabuto blood and some silphium (an extinct spice used in ancient Roman cuisine; you’ll find some in your cupboard once you’ve finished cooking).
After that, there’s not much to do but pan-fry it. You can do this forward if you want, but I recommend backward: start with a burnt-black Dialga steak and cook it until it’s medium-rare. Chow down, then season it with however much salt and pepper you think it would have needed. At some point, you’ll need to actually go out and catch the Dialga you just cooked – but be warned; Dialga can perceive all time simultaneously, so it will already have known everything you had been going to do, and it was pissed off.
In fact, it’s probably best if, after you finish this recipe, you decide never to start it in the first place. Just have a “pure” La Croix instead. It’ll be delicious.
it will have been-
it had been about to-
it was going to have already-
it delicious. drink good
Who wants to do some mad science and make a rabbit that lays chocolate eggs?
This is hard to do with a real rabbit, ’cause rabbits don’t traditionally lay eggs. But all Pokémon lay eggs – even mammal Pokémon like Lopunny. All we have to do is give Lopunny a crippling calcium deficiency so its body can’t form normal eggshells. That means no dairy, no fish and no leafy green vegetables. In fact, it’s probably best to feed Lopunny nothing but refined sugar and fermented cacao beans. Obviously, this is ridiculously unhealthy, so you’ll need to give it vitamin supplements to keep it from suffering a whole pile of other nutritional disorders. And it’ll still have all the symptoms of calcium deficiency, like brittle bones, muscle spasms and hallucinations.
To keep your mind off what you’re doing to this poor creature, mix up a steak sauce from fried onions, peppercorns, Cherubi brandy, Bidoof stock and Miltank cream. Do it now, and it should have been ready last week so you will have been going to serve it with my Dialga recipe!
Anyway, after a good month or so on this clearly inhumane diet, your Lopunny should begin laying eggs with pure dark chocolate shells. They’ll be infertile, because… well, obviously. Heck, if you’re lucky they might even have caramel yolks. The Cinnabar Institute of Genetics is rumoured to be working on a genetically modified Lopunny that is physiologically incapable of processing calcium, but they’re at least five years away from successfully keeping one alive. That’s five years for us to corner the market, baby!
All that’s left is to decide which flavour of La Croix goes best with chocolate eggs and animal rights violations – if you ask me, it’s gotta be coconut cola. Enjoy!
what are we cooking this week?
Garchomp, seriously? who the fµ¢£ eats Garchomp? The flavour is so overpowering; the texture is super tough; because it’s an apex predator its body accumulates a lot of environmental toxins… look, you don’t wanna eat this $#!t
okay, okay, OKAY
You can do, like, Garchomp steaks, or you can batter and fry it; hell, you can mince it and make these fµ¢£in’ spiced fish-cake things, same as they do with Sharpedo in Old Mossdeep
those are all garbage
overpriced tourist SWILL, I say
There’s one part of Garchomp that’s worth eating, and that’s the cephalofoils – better known as the sticky-outy-head-bits. As the Pokédex tells us, these are actually sensory organs; they’re full of nerve bundles that let Garchomp sense both air currents and prey while in flight. They’re very high in fat with a unique texture, much more tender than actual Garchomp meat and almost closer to the “creamy” texture of brains, with a rich, savoury and only subtly fishy taste. They also contain a cavity filled with a waxy, oily fluid that is horribly poisonous. In Oreburgh City there are traditional butchers that can drain the fluid away and clean up the meat – they’ll even pay you for it, since Garchomp oil is super valuable as a clean fuel, a lubricant, even a couple of niche pharmaceutical uses. The skin makes great sandpaper too.
Once they’ve been properly drained and cleaned, the cephalofoils are a regional delicacy. They’re normally prepared by stuffing that cavity with fried rice and vegetables, flavoured with a simple sauce based on honey, soy sauce and black vinegar. At this point, some people deep-fry the whole thing, which honestly I think is a travesty; it’s already a juicy cut, and a lot of common frying oils can mess with the complex flavours. Just do a basic spice rub of cumin, black pepper and dried Leppa berry, then grill it.
The traditional drinks pairing for this is a sparkling Cherubi wine with a twist of lemon, but if you don’t have any, a peach pear La Croix will do just as well. Enjoy!
Toxicroak’s an angry bastard of a Pokémon that’ll kill you as quick as look at you, but there’s one classic Sinnoh home cooking recipe it’s indispensable for: Pastoria marsh gumbo. This recipe starts the same as any gumbo, with a dark roux of flour and Exeggcute oil. Add your veggies – Bulbasaur bulb, Tangela vines, purple bell pepper, Paras shrooms, Tropius plantains if you can get ’em, all finely chopped – followed by plenty of Starly broth and the local spice blend (it’s Cajun-esque, but made with dried Cheri and Figy berries). Then comes the secret ingredient, the signature of the Pastoria City version of this dish: Toxicroak venom.
Toxicroak venom is stored and blended in the Pokémon’s throat sac, and in its native state it’s a lethal contact poison that you shouldn’t be putting anywhere near food. You need to keep a couple of Toxicroak on a restricted diet to reduce the amount of venom they make, and also inject their throat sacs with this weird local swamp liquor. They won’t tell me what’s in it; you can buy it but honestly I think it’s more dangerous than the raw venom. It tastes of swamp water and pain, but it’s the only booze you can get around here and they put it in everything. Anyway, stick it in a Toxicroak’s throat and some kind of magical fermentation process happens that makes it good – really earthy, potato-y, notes of sesame.
You milk them for the venom and add it to the stew, you add your meats, you add salt, pepper, chopped Carnivine leaves, a little Roselia nectar, whatever seasonings it takes to get it exactly right, and just leave it for a while to let the flavours mingle, a few hours if you can. The meats can kinda be anything you want, but traditionally they use a variety of different swamp Pokémon – shredded Croagunk and Toxicroak legs, obviously, but also Skorupi, usually a bit of spiced Golduck, often some smoked Arbok. You can even get it with honey-and-soy Yanma. Then you just serve a few ladles of it with wild swamp rice and whichever flavour of La Croix goes with… all of that. I dunno, it’s probably the watermelon, right? Has to be watermelon.
(from a secret bonus episode produced by other fans)
Christmas is coming and we’re making drinks with Snover, the snow-covered tannenbaum Pokémon… but here’s the thing. I’m from the southern hemisphere. Christmas for me is piña coladas on the beach on a long sunny afternoon. So I wanted to make a summery Snover cocktail. I call it a “Summer Snow.”
The core ingredient is a potent Snover absinthe made in northeast Kalos. They make it by soaking Snover needles in distilled alcohol – some young, bright green needles from the very tips of its arms, some slightly older and sturdier ones from the tail, and some of the mature white needles from the base of its… pointy hat-thing. The flavours are supposed to be subtly different, so it makes the whole spirit more complex. After that, the alcohol is distilled a second time and then infused with another herb blend containing sweet Snover berries, cold resistant Yache berries, Yache plant leaves and half a dozen other secret ingredients. The resulting spirit is fragrant, herby, slightly sweet and warm and cold all at the same time.
As for the cocktail, it’s one measure each of Snover absinthe, Galarian Eldegoss liqueur, sweetened Cherubi brandy, Pinap berry juice and Nomel berry juice, all shaken over ice. Float a barspoon of grenadine to get a tequila sunrise-type effect, then garnish with a liberal dusting of shaved ice and coconut flakes and a single Bellossom flower. Cheers from the Glorious Antipodes, and here’s to another year of cooking and eating Pokémon!
Wait, the season’s ending already? But there’s so many Pokémon we haven’t cooked and eaten yet! We haven’t had Torterra stew cooked in its own shell, or glowing Lumineon fillets, or chattering fried Chatot that lets you speak (but not understand) other languages…
There’s nothing for it but to blow the rest of the budget on the fanciest Sinnohan food and drink money can buy. And if you ask me, the single most outrageous thing you can order in a Sinnohan restaurant is a “Crooked Madam”: basically a whole Wormadam marinated in Cherubi wine. The reason it’s so extravagant is Burmy and Wormadam make their “cloaks” out of any old $#! that’s lying around. To avoid getting a mouthful of random debris, you have to raise them from birth in special enclosures that contain exactly the ingredients you want and nothing else. No restaurant in Sinnoh will trust a third-party supplier to raise Wormadam for them because it’s such a finicky job, so you can only get this dish at a handful of places, mostly around Floaroma Town and Hearthome City, that can afford to do everything themselves.
What you want is for your Burmy to essentially prepare their own seasoning, so you fill the enclosure with the berry plants whose flavours you want in the dish: Chesto for earthiness, Pinap for sourness, Mago for sweetness, Tanga for spice, Leppa and Oran to tie it all together. Even more fiddly is caring for the plants; like, you want the flavours of Oran leaves, blossom and berries, but only Tanga leaves, so you have to prune the flowers as they grow. Every restaurant has its own version of this routine, for the exact balance of flavours they want. When Burmy evolve into Wormadam, the burst of energy permanently fuses their “cloaks” with their bodies, which is why Wormadam never change their cloaks anymore. In this case, that means binding those delicious flavours into the Pokémon’s flesh and blending them to perfection.
Once they’re ready, you marinate them whole in big vats of Cherubi wine – this is the part where you can skimp a little; it doesn’t have to be a top-shelf ’07 from a prestigious château, it can be any half-decent cooking wine, but some places splurge anyway, just for the clout. Anyway, you marinate the Wormadam overnight, then gently pan-fry it whole in Miltank butter, until it’s cooked through and the herby crust of the Pokémon’s cloak is crispy. Serve on a bed of Grotle greens with roasted Diglett and a rich Cherubi wine and Combee honey sauce.
Cresselia and Darkrai
As for the drinks… look, I want to do a La Croix pairing, but I just… I can’t. Not for this. It’s too much. I’m sorry. It would be sacrilege. There’s just enough left in the season budget for a proper cocktail. I’m gonna make you a Moonlight Manhattan. Just shut up and drink.
The distinguishing feature of this drink is a pair of unique malt whiskies made at two little monasteries on Fullmoon Island and Newmoon Island, way up north. They’re mostly pretty standard malt whiskies – local spring water, barley, charred Japanese oak casks, lots of time.
The weird part is, every month, on the night of the full moon, the monks on Fullmoon Island drag all their big heavy casks up from the basement to a forest clearing, then just leave them out overnight. They do the same thing on Newmoon Island on the night of the new moon. Every month, like clockwork – and bear in mind that this is a nine-year-aged whisky made in 200-litre casks. But supposedly there is some kind of weird magic that goes on in this monthly ritual, something to do with the influence of the legendary Pokémon Cresselia and Darkrai. Whatever it is, the Fullmoon whisky tastes of light, sweet dreams, strawberries with cream and long summer days, and the Newmoon whisky tastes of the void, half-remembered nightmares, deep dark peat bogs and black liquorice. Or, that’s what people who can afford this $#!t say.
To make a Moonlight Manhattan, you just take one measure each of these two magic whiskies, one measure of the best Roselia vermouth you can find, a dash of orange bitters and two of Angostura, stir it all together and garnish with a miniature Cherubi soaked in brandy. Purists will say that you shouldn’t even make cocktails with whiskies this special, but this one is kind of an exception, because these two specific whiskies mixed together kinda taste like everything. You need the other ingredients just to level it out and keep you grounded.
Anyway. This has been a bit of a long one, but I figured for a season finale that was only proper. Here’s to the Sinnoh region, the Boixs and many more Pokémon to cook and eat in days to come!
hear me out
this one isn’t so much a recipe as a watershed moment in the history of Pokémon labour rights
A bunch of cities in south Unova used to have some really bad regulation loopholes where you could basically hire wild Timburr for construction work and pay them in berries. Because they didn’t technically “belong” to anyone you could ignore a lot of the normal safety ordinances. Obviously a bunch of them died in construction accidents, but the thing that really forced local government to close the loopholes was that people were just… fµ¢£in’… eating them. Like, a Timburr would step off the construction site for a goddamn smoke break or something, and some asshole would see them on the street, think “ooh, free meat,” drive past, throw ’em in a sack, take ’em home and just chop ’em up for a stew or whatever. Genuinely the grisliest $#!t I’ve ever seen in my life.
anyway that’s where Nacrene Timburr log stew comes from
Basically the recipe is, you chop up a Timburr and stew it in its own hollowed-out log. Usually you char the inside of the log first to get a smoky flavour. Timburr meat is really high in protein and generally pretty tough, so it takes a low-and-slow stewing process. The exceptions are that lumpy, fatty crest thing on Timburr’s head (which you can flash fry and serve with a bit of gravy from the stew) and the nose. Timburr noses used to be salted, seasoned with onion powder, dried and sold as an aphrodisiac.
Unovan food is WILD, you guys
The other ingredients in the stew itself are pretty basic – onions, potatoes, salt, pepper, a bit of Miltank cream. Sometimes you literally throw in a seasoning packet from some instant noodles for extra flavour. The people making this dish didn’t usually have a big budget.
Anyway, that’s why Unova now has a law that Timburr working on construction sites have to be accompanied by their trainers.
I’m not even gonna give you a La Croix pairing for this one, because let’s be honest, this is definitely another sparkling vinegar and oat milk situation.
Anyone know what a gastrolith is?
(no, seriously, pause here and see if anyone knows)
That’s right; gastroliths are random fµ¢£in’ rocks that are sometimes swallowed by animals (or Pokémon) with inefficient digestive systems to help grind up food in their stomachs. Humans, to be clear, are not supposed to do this. Humans are evolved to eat food that our stomachs can handle just fine without swallowing rocks. We do not need to swallow rocks.
But several native Pokémon of Unova do habitually swallow gastroliths. It turns out that some of the largest ones – I’m talking the really big buggers, Seismitoad, Bouffalant, that kind of thing – occasionally swallow small juvenile Roggenrola, whole, alive. Turns out it doesn’t even hurt them; they just, uh… pass through… and they’re fine.
But then the health food nuts caught wind of it.
Basically, one of those bull$#!t MLM cults outta Nimbasa City learned about this and asked themselves “okay, how can we market this?”
And what they decided to do was convince people to swallow Boldore crystals.
You sign up for this service, and every fortnight they send you a big bag of crushed up Boldore crystals. Each piece is about 2 cm. You’re supposed to swallow two or three with every meal, and they’ll help you digest your food in a way that’s supposedly more “natural.” The claim made by the ads is that, when these crystals grind against each other in your stomach, they release magical Rock-type energies that help to break down and neutralise the toxins in modern processed food, as well as help your body extract more nutrients.
There are just four small problems with this scheme.
1) it’s utter fµ¢£ing bull$#!t
2) Boldore crystals aren’t just decorative; they’re an important part of the Pokémon’s biology. Boldore need those things to regulate their energy, and they take ages to grow back.
3) Because of the limited supply of Boldore crystals, the company that runs this scheme asks customers to “retrieve” the crystals that they’ve “finished” using, give ’em a quick rinse and return them by mail for “cleaning.” Think about that for a second.
4) it’s utter fµ¢£ing bull$#!t
I realise that’s technically only three points, but I thought the first one was important enough to be worth saying twice.
If you really want to improve your digestion, just try a grapefruit La Croix. It won’t help, but it’ll be better than this.
First recipe of the new year! And we’re cooking, what, Jellicent? There’s an obvious answer here, which is that you can squeeze Jellicent to extract delicious jelly – strawberry flavoured from the pink female ones and blueberry from the blue male ones.
(Aside: in NZ English, the word “jelly” means the stuff you call “jello” – as a kid, when I heard US TV shows talk about “peanut butter and jelly sandwiches,” I was convinced you were all spreading jars of pre-made jello on bread like a nation of complete fµ¢£ing psychopaths)
Anyway, the problem with eating Jellicent is that it’s a cursed evil spirit, so if you go swimming within two hours of eating the jelly, it will exert a supernatural pull on your body from inside your stomach, paralyse your limbs and try to drag you to the bottom of the ocean. Also, Jellicent jelly contains an ungodly level of salt, because it’s a sea Pokémon.
These days, if you buy Jellicent jelly from a Unovan supermarket, it’s usually had a special curse-breaking ritual done on it, which reduces the chance of supernatural drowning by about 70%. If you get it from a smaller local supplier, they’ll often leave the curses intact. I think some people just get a thrill out of the risk? You always want to check the label for that $#!t before you buy; trust me. There’s also a few specialty producers now that raise Frillish and Jellicent in big tanks and feed them vodka all the time, so when you squeeze them you basically get vodka jello shots. The combination of alcohol and dark magic has some… interesting hallucinogenic effects. Supposedly. Not that I would know.
Anyway, what doesn’t change, no matter where you buy it, is they never do anything about the salt content. I think it’s like saltwater taffy – like, it’s obviously gross, but for people who enjoy Jellicent jelly, the saltiness is exactly what they like about it? Fortunately, if the salt is not to your taste, there’s a very easy way you can temper it – just soak the jelly overnight in watermelon La Croix. Sucks the salt right out!
Simisage, Simisear and Simipour are already food-themed Pokémon. We meet their junior forms in the game through the Striaton Gym, which is a restaurant, and its triplet leaders are the service staff. I dunno how recently any of you played B/W but this is all true.
What you often get in Unovan restaurants is they’ll serve all three Pokémon as part of a tasting menu, each prepared with type-themed methods: Simisage pan-fried with a tasty herb crust, Simisear charcoal grilled, and Simipour in a noodle soup with a rich spicy broth.
There’s also a traditional way to make tea, where you take Simipour’s water, boil it on Simisear’s fire, then add Simisage leaves. It’s not even great tea, honestly – kinda bitter. Of course, there’s also no tea-flavoured La Croix, so the “Coffea Exotica” flavour will have to do.
Take a look at Solosis. Tell me what you see.
Whatever you said, you’re wrong, because the answer is “a living pickle jar.”
It’s an old Unovan pickling method – slip some vegetables inside the viscous membrane of a Solosis, feed it some spices and vinegar, and wait. Commercial producers these days keep dozens of Solosis and drain a little of their cytoplasmic fluid at a time into glass jars, then pickle vegetables in the jars, which is supposedly more “sanitary.” These people are COWARDS and IMBECILES.
Pickled Kelpsy berries and Snivy fronds are highly valued for salads; whole pickled Maractus buds are a great snack. There are several traditional pickling spice mixtures, which you start feeding to your Solosis at least a week before giving it the veggies you want to pickle. Supposedly using a Duosion or Reuniclus can give you a slightly more “mature” or “funky” flavour, while Solosis will make your pickles a bit “brighter” or “fresher.” Personally I think this is snobbish superstition on the part of connoisseurs, but hey, whatever floats your boat.
If you want to mix things up a little, you could always try keeping your Solosis on a diet of your favourite flavour of La Croix to see if it infuses the pickle. Start with lime and experiment from there.
Right. We’re doing one of the vanilla ice cream ones. Vanill-ite or -ish or -luxe. I don’t remember which one. I don’t care. The vanilla ice cream Pokémon are a shameful lie, because they’re made of ice and snow. They aren’t sweet, creamy or vanilla-flavoured at all.
There’s actually no purer source of water, anywhere in the world, than melting a Vanillite; mountain springs ain’t got nothin’ on this $#!t. All the seltzer producers in Unova use melted Vanillite as the base for their products, so Unovan La Croix is technically non-vegetarian. The Pokédex claims that Vanillite was created as the result of an icicle’s desperate wish not to melt in the morning sun, so melting is really the cruellest fate imaginable for this Pokémon. But it deserves it, for looking like ice cream but not tasting like it.
There’s a bunch of other sadistic $#!t you can do to a Vanillite if you really want to punish it for being a mockery of the sacred mission to cook and eat Pokémon – like you can soak it in sugar syrup and fruit juice until it goes into a coma, then eat it alive. But, y’know, here at Pokémaniacal we don’t explicitly endorse that kind of thing in any legally actionable way. Officially. As far as you know.
Oh, look, it’s Eelektrik. God, this thing is awful. Eelektrik is a lamprey, and real lampreys are not prettier than Eelektrik. They’re basically a length of garden hose glued to a plunger head full of teeth. However, they are also – rumour has it – delicious.
Lampreys were a delicacy of mediaeval French cuisine, so much so that King Henry I of England supposedly died of eating “a surfeit of lampreys” – i.e. they were so good he just couldn’t stop eating, and kept stuffing himself until his fµ¢£ing kidneys exploded or something.
(full disclosure; I think modern historians mostly believe it was food poisoning that killed the poor bastard, not excessive lamprey consumption per se, but I think you’ll agree my version is much funnier)
We even have several mediaeval lamprey recipes from the oldest surviving English cookbook, the 1467 “Noble Boke off Cookry ffor a Prynce Houssolde or Eny Other Estately Houssolde,” which we can easily translate to cooking Eelektrik. Or at least I can, so you don’t have to.
“To bak a freche lampry,” we are instructed to first drown a live lamprey in red wine (for our Eelektrik recipe, even though we’re in Unova, there’s no excuse not to use a top-shelf Sinnohan Cherubi wine here). Then, “when he is dyinge tak him out and put hym in skaldinge water.” At this point we skin and gut the lamprey, then boil it in salted water, “in the same place within that ye may cum” (maybe skip that step?), before deboning it. The next step is some incomprehensible fµ¢£ing Middle English bull$#!t about fingers so we’re going to skip that. There’s also an extra step with Eelektrik, which is that as you’re skinning, gutting and deboning it, you have to make sure you remove the electrical glands on the sides of its body, as these can remain active after death and electrocute your diners. This would be bad.
Next we make a kind of mediaeval sauce called a “galentyne,” which is made of red wine thickened with breadcrumbs. The Noble Boke flavours its galentyne with crushed raisins, vinegar, sugar, salt and a bunch of spices including cinnamon, ginger and saffron. We can use dried Lilligant berries for the raisins, a splash of Maractus vinegar, and some Unovan spices to give this dish a bit of local flavour: powdered Larvesta horn for that cinnamon warmth, ground Crustle shell for desert heat, and some fragrant, floral Sawsbuck horn.
According to the Noble Boke, we should next “mak a large coffyn of pured floure and put thy lampry ther in,” which I think just means we should coat it with flour, and “luk the ovene be hoot” (preheat the oven). Then just stick the Eelektrik in a pot and braise it in the sauce. Eelektrik is a naturally pretty rubbery Pokémon, so a long, slow braising will both tenderise it and allow the flavours of our rich galentyne sauce to infuse the meat. It should have a little leftover electrical “tang,” but this is balanced by the warm and fragrant spices.
For a drinks pairing, you could pour yourself a glass of Cherubi wine, or break out the Serperior absinthe if you’re feeling really French. But there’s also a new flavour of your favourite seltzer coming out soon, so I think we should end this with… a cherry blossom La Croix.
There’s one major obstacle to cooking and eating Volcarona. Volcarona is a holy Pokémon, worshipped since ancient times as the embodiment of the sun. In many parts of Unova, even today, eating it would be considered sacrilege and could get you run out of town. Fortunately for us, since the beginning of time, man has yearned to eat the sun. There are dark, hidden places in Unova – places where heretical sects dare to dream this forbidden dream. This recipe comes from the secret, blasphemous rituals of these heliophagic cultists.
Capture and restrain a Volcarona. It has to be alive for the ritual, but if its wings can move freely, it will immolate you with celestial fire for your insolence. The best method is to get a Jellicent to form a bubble of seawater around its wings, which also pre-seasons them. Prepare the Volcarona by coating its body with a paste of finely ground Sun Stones, powdered Occa berries, mashed Cherubi and sweetened Lilligant nectar, then liberally sprinkle with Sunflora seeds. Smoke it with psychoactive Musharna dream smoke and read the forbidden chants. Take a dagger carved from the crescent point of a Lunatone and dip it in poisonous Umbreon sweat. Plunge the dagger into Volcarona’s heart to symbolise the victory of night over day.
(Disclaimer: This might end the world. It hasn’t yet, but it’s only been tried a few times.)
Wrap the Volcarona’s wings around its body, then drench the whole thing in Chandelure oil, which burns with the cold, dark fire of the spirit world – the only fire that can cook the sun. When it’s cooked through, douse the flames in a rich, black Absol blood sauce.
If you could taste a sunset – if you could describe the bittersweet flavour of a moonless night swallowing up the last glimmers of daylight – that’s what this dish is. Only the finest black Roselia wine could match it – but failing that, there’s always black raspberry La Croix.
I’m a big believer in contrast in food. Sweet and salty, spicy and creamy, hot and cold, soft and crunchy, dishes that come at you from two directions at once. So to cook and eat Darumaka, I’m going to propose two paired dishes that do exactly that: hot and cold Darumaka dumplings, make with fiery Unovan Darumaka and chilly Galarian Darumaka.
The first of these is a traditional Unovan recipe. The main components of the filling are minced Darumaka meat and a bit of shredded Dwebble (think of it like a Cantonese pork and prawn dumpling). That’s flavoured with Maractus seeds and nectar, a little bit of soy sauce, a little bit of ginger and sometimes some powdered Sigilyph scales. The dumplings themselves are decorated to look like Darumaka – the wrappers are dyed red with a little bit of food-safe powdered Crawdaunt shell, then you stick on some little hands and horns made from dried orange peel, and a couple of whole cloves for the eyes. Then you serve them floating in a spicy broth.
Recipe two is a cold, sweet Galarian version of that. The “dumplings” are more like ice cream mochi. You make the ice cream by blending Darumaka’s snowy body and icy horns with Alcremie cream and the yolks from a couple of Eiscue eggs, plus a healthy dose of vanilla. Wrap up balls of the ice cream in some rice dough wrappers, and once again decorate them to look like Darumaka, this time using candied violets. And again, we serve these in a kind of soup – a sweet, clear broth flavoured with Gossifleur nectar, a few slices of poached Appletun and seasonal berries.
As for the obligatory La Croix pairing… y’know what, we’re living dangerously on this one, we’re going hibiscus.
I don’t need to tell you what to do with Foongus. In fact, I can confidently predict that, by the time you read this tweet on the air, all four of you will have been completely off your tits for at least the last forty five minutes.
Unovans have eaten dried Foongus to induce psychedelic experiences for thousands of years, particularly in the cooler northern and western parts of the region where Foongus are native. What you might not know is how Foongus can be “tailored” to induce different kinds of trips. Foongus learns moves and abilities by producing different chemicals, which alters the balance of psychoactive compounds in its body.
For instance, the most “mellow” trips come from Foongus with the sleep-inducing move Spore, which guarantees a peaceful, meditative experience. Foongus with the move Rage Powder were traditionally eaten by berserkers to enter a “battle-trance” so they could fight without fear or pain. Today, a major sports team (which I cannot name for legal reasons) has been accused of putting players in a similar trance during games. Those hoping for a profound religious experience or new philosophical insight should try a Solarbeam Foongus, while anyone interested in a wilder, LSD-like trip should pick a Foongus with Toxic. Foongus with Sweet Scent are said to be more suited for use with a… close partner.
These days, TMs and egg moves allow connoisseurs to produce new Foongus strains all kinds of exciting properties – but that’s best left to professionals. One poor bastard tried to breed a strain of Foongus with Worry Seed that would give the user a burst of creative energy. It worked; he produced three novellas, nine oil paintings, a screenplay and an entire season of a true crime podcast – then promptly died of sleep deprivation.
It’s hard to say if better hydration might have saved him, but… just in case, keep a grapefruit La Croix on standby.
boixs. boixs. you keep doing this to me. *Golurk*? It’s a robot made of fired clay and filled with rocket fuel, loathing and ennui. What are we supposed to do? Just presuppose that the entire Pokémon is made out of fµ¢£in’… I dunno, let’s say marzipan this time???
Well, I won’t stand for it! Here’s what you’re gonna do. Teach your Golurk the move Grass Knot. Take it out into the wilderness, set it down on some fertile soil, then have it use Grass Knot to entangle itself in weeds and vines. Get some other Grass Pokémon to help with this. Leave it there. Over the course of several years, the plants and mosses growing on Golurk’s body will begin to break it down. As the walls of its chest cavity weaken, the explosive magical energy inside will begin to leak out. Left unchecked, it will spark a nuclear fireball. To keep this from happening, have your Grass Pokémon hit Golurk with Mega Drain or Giga Drain a few times a day and redirect the excess energy down into the soil, where it can feed the growth of plants.
Start a garden around Golurk’s body as it gradually decays into dust. Get a hive of Combee and Vespiquen to pollinate flowers and produce honey for you. Plant some trees. Grow almonds, citrus, apricots, vanilla orchids. The dangerous unstable magic you’ve diverted into the earth should make them grow vigorously! Get some Torchic too, for the eggs.
By now it’s probably been at least 30 years since you “planted” your Golurk, and you might be feeling quite old. Golurk’s body should have broken down almost completely to feed the plants in your garden, and its unstable energy core should be starting to fade as well. That’s when you take those almonds from the almond trees you planted, crush them into a fine, smooth paste and mix them with honey from your Vespiquen hives and egg whites from your Torchic eggs. Maybe flavour it with a little lemon juice and a little vanilla. Boom! Marzipan!
That’s right! I just turned a Golurk into fµ¢£ing marzipan, and all it took was a lifetime of hard work and dedication! Now that’s a fµ¢£in’ presupposition!
Also, now you can get some blue food dye, colour your marzipan and sculpt it into a Golurk. You can eat your marzipan Golurk, or you can use a forbidden ritual to reconstitute the original Golurk’s soul and bring it to life, beginning the cycle anew! Either way, cherry and almond pair well, so make sure you stock up on about 30 years’ worth of cherry blossom La Croix.
Cottonee’s an easy one for once. We can’t go to the America region without having some classic Unovan fairground food. You know the vibe – it’s a hot summer’s day just outside Aspertia City, you get some friends together for a day riding ferris wheels and $#!t. And of course you get hungry, and you try all the classics: corn Lillipup, fried Bouffalant butter, chocolate-covered Tepig bacon, fried Seismitoad legs, candy Solosis, blooming Petilil… a lot of fried $#!t. So why not just fry a whole Cottonee on a stick?
Cottonee is actually great for deep-frying, because that dense cotton-fibre body has such a high surface area that can absorb a lot of flavour from the oil and get really crispy. Generally they dust it lightly in flour seasoned with salt, black pepper and dried Simisage leaves. Because it’s easy to just press stuff into the cotton so it won’t fall out, it’s also common to add nuts or seeds to mix up the flavour and textures. Then you quickly deep fry the whole thing and drizzle over some honey or chocolate syrup that soaks into the light, airy cotton.
Of course, all these fried and salty fairground treats will get you pretty thirsty. For this week’s La Croix pairing, I’m recommending the bright, refreshing piña fraise, or pineapple and strawberry flavour. Enjoy!
You can cook and eat Shelmet on its own just fine, or even eat it raw; in Driftveil City they crack these things open and serve ’em on the half shell with a splash of mignonette sauce like oysters. But if you want to get fancy, you serve Shelmet alongside Karrablast. Karrablast and Shelmet are paired strangely: they evolve when “both receive electrical stimulation” (Pokédex code for “when you trade one for the other”). In the process, Karrablast steals Shelmet’s shell, becoming the armoured Escavalier while Shelmet becomes squishy Accelgor. The fun thing is that other kinds of energy can also cause Shelmet and Karrablast to react to each other in interesting ways. If you cook them together, the heat can cause them to release strange combinations of flavours that you’d never get from eating either Pokémon alone.
The result is the Icirrus Moor Bug Boil, traditional comfort food from swampy northwestern Unova, where both Pokémon are native. First, prepare a spicy broth with garlic, onions, Simisage and Serperior leaves, and a drop (no more, no less) of flaming Chandelure oil. Bring that to a boil, then throw in your Shelmet and Karrablast. You will want to shell your Shelmet first, but add the armour to the stew as well, because some kind of weird alchemy happens in this dish that makes normally unpalatable parts of both Pokémon delicious. If you boil it with a Karrablast, Shelmet’s armour softens to the point where it’s edible and has a unique tangy umami flavour and a distinctive crunch. The unappetising chitin of Karrablast’s horn breaks down and exposes the flavourful crab-like meat within. Shelmet and Karrablast also defend themselves with poisonous secretions that normally have foul, extremely bitter tastes. If you’re cooking either Pokémon alone, you have to carefully remove the venom glands to avoid ruining the food. But mixed together, they somehow neutralise.
The result is a creamy sauce with a delicate, subtly sweet flavour that grounds this entire stew beautifully. Finish the stew with some dried Whirlipede segments or a little spicy Palpitoad sausage, salt and pepper to taste, and a quick blast of Heatmor smoke. It sounds complicated, but the key is the culinary magic of tapping Shelmet and Karrablast’s unique relationship using fire instead of electricity. You could even experiment with using other mystic forces to bring them together… like the refreshing power of coconut La Croix.
I’ve had it with trying to cook and eat mechanical Pokémon made of solid metal
I break my Arceus-damn teeth every time and a couple of weeks ago when I turned a Golurk into marzipan I got heavy metal poisoning from all the fµ¢£ing chromium in its body glaze. I’m solving this bull$#!t riddle once and for all. I’m gonna use Pokémon moves, items and abilities – anything that can make a Steel-type less like a Steel-type – to turn Klinklang into something vaguely edible. Will it be toxic? I have no idea and at this point I don’t care.
First step: We’re going to deploy the unique ability of the poisonous Alolan lizard Pokémon Salazzle. Steel Pokémon are normally immune to poison, but Salazzle’s Corrosion ability allows its venom to eat through Steel-type armour. Soak Klinklang in a pool of Salazzle venom until its metallic skin begins to dissolve.
Second, we’ll take away its Steel type altogether with a combination of two moves. One is Soak, which is where a Water Pokémon drenches an enemy in water to turn it into an honorary Water-type. Several Water-types can learn Soak, but we’ll use Wailord in honour of the Mail Hoard. The second move we need can only be learned by one Pokémon: Trevenant, who can use Forest’s Curse to add the Grass type to any Pokémon. Use both, and Klinklang will become a Water/Grass-type.
Step three uses the reality-bending power of the move Skill Swap. Teach this move to a Grumpig, and we can use it to transfer Grumpig’s delicious layer of Thick Fat to Klinklang! How does this happen? I have no fµ¢£ing clue, but it’s something you can literally do in the game!
Step four is to cover Klinklang’s body in a paste of mashed babiri berries. Apart from being extremely spicy, babiri berries can be eaten by Pokémon to reduce the damage taken from Steel attacks. Hopefully, they will extend a similar benefit to the diner’s gastrointestinal tract.
Use Magneton’s Magnet Pull ability to extract any leftover shards of metal, and hopefully Klinklang’s body should now resemble… some kind of watery, fatty vegetable, but still shaped like a clockwork mechanism? Like a cross between a cucumber, an avocado and a Swiss watch. Put it in a sandwich. Put it on toast. Fry it, maybe? I’m only now realising that it’ll probably taste, at best, like babiri berries and Grumpig fat, which is good and all but defeats the purpose of cooking and eating Klinklang. Might benefit from pairing with a lemon La Croix.
Anyway, if you don’t hear from me again after this week, you should probably assume that this recipe is not safe for human consumption.
So… Trubbish. Trubbish, Trubbish… Trubbish.
This is not gonna be gourmet $#!t, you know that, right? It’s an ambulatory trash bag. Still… I regret to report that people in central Unova do sometimes eat Trubbish. When they’re desperate. And crazy. And stupid.
The thing about Trubbish is that it can eat random debris and gradually break it down and absorb it into its body. Wood, paper, plastic, glass, metal, bone, rotting food, battery acid… it’s all good. By which I mean it’s all horrible, but Trubbish loves eating horrible things. So even with no actual food around, a Trubbish can survive by scavenging junk, and you can survive in a dystopian urban hellscape by eating Trubbish. Its flesh is rubbery, has a metallic tang, sometimes contains shards of glass and gives off noxious fumes when you cook it. Still, it is technically edible, in the sense that you won’t immediately die and will feel less hungry for a while. If you keep eating Trubbish for an extended period, though, it puts you at risk of heavy metal poisoning, salmonella, botulism, several unique parasites and scurvy. If you survive all that, your body may begin to adapt. This might be even worse, because it basically means you’ll be gradually evolving into a Trubbish. Keep track by regularly drinking “pure” La Croix. If the can starts to look tastier than the drink, it’s time to switch diets.
I’d like to direct you to a line from Leavanny’s Pokédex entry that you may well have discussed already: “It keeps its eggs warm with heat from fermenting leaves.” We all love fermentation, right?
In Hoenn, people may speak in hushed tones of rare black Roselia wine. In Sinnoh, Cherubi brandy is the top-shelf beverage of choice, or Snover absinthe. In seasons 6 and 7, you can bet I’ll have words about crème de Floette and Araquanid gin. But in Unova, there’s one drink whose very name sends shivers down every spine in the room: Leavännört.
The backstory to this one – allegedly – is that some poor bastard had been lost in a forest in eastern Unova for two months when he stumbled into an abandoned Leavanny nest. Delirious with hunger, he smelled the fermenting leaves and rotten eggs and thought “better than nothing.”
That guy died, obviously, but with a smile on his face, and we know that because when his body was found, it had been preserved by all the alcohol in his system. But his death was not in vain; the rescue team that found him tasted the fermented leaves, and some of them survived. They began experimenting with creating this stuff under controlled conditions; it soon became popular as a restorative elixir for hard-core survivalists and other wilderness-oriented lunatics. There’s like 50 different commercial recipes now, but they all have the same core.
Basically what you’re doing is heaping up a big mound of leaves and herbs in a warm place, adding yeast, letting them start to decay and melt and bubble and fizz, then collecting whatever trickles out. The leaves themselves are chosen and gathered by both Leavanny and humans. Most people include some of Leavanny’s own leaves, as well as various blends of pungent and bitter herbs. Traditionalists also insist on burying a few unfertilised Leavanny eggs in the pile, where they too will undergo… something that could charitably be called fermentation.
It’s also very common for Leavännört to be sold with a single pickled Leavanny egg in the bottle, or served with a slice of pickled egg in the glass. These are actually different eggs from the ones in the leaf piles, which (no matter what anyone tells you) are not safe to eat. Instead, they’re preserved in a mixture of ash, clay and quicklime like a Chinese “century egg,” which gradually turns the whites dark brown and the yolks grey-green, giving them a distinctive and somewhat overpowering salty, vaguely ammonia-like flavour.
Anyway, is this stuff good to drink? No. Absolutely not. It tastes like getting a tonsillectomy from a hickory tree. It tastes like vomiting up an entire wormwood bush. It tastes like a Tangela died in your mouth 19 years ago and was never found. But there is one key upside. If you walk into a bar in Nacrene City, order a glass of this $#!t and down it in one go, WITH the salty pickled egg, every human being in that bar will want to sleep with you. Use this knowledge wisely, and make sure you carry a black raspberry La Croix to wash the taste out.
Today I’m going cook my take on four seasons venison, a famous Deerling dish and beloved classic of Unovan haute cuisine. My version cuts some corners, uses cheaper ingredients, is a bit easier to prepare – you could call it “four seasons total landscaping venison.”
The classic dish is four perfect medallions of Deerling loin with season-themed spice rubs, sauces and garnishes: edible flower petals, dainty miniature salads, toasted nuts, snowflake crystals, some kind of rainbow vinaigrette that might as well be magic as far as I’m concerned. It’s great, and if you’re in Castelia City with money to blow, you should absolutely order it. But for home cooks… it’s a tall order. Maybe you don’t need the fancy presentation. You can get most of what’s good about this dish with just some medium-rare steaks and four sauces.
The Spring sauce is just Nomel berry juice, rosemary, pepper and muddled Lilligant petals. The Summer one is spicy Cheri berry paste, a little Oran berry oil and crushed ginger. In restaurants they add ground Larvesta spikes; if you have some, use it, but don’t break the bank. Autumn is a sweetened pomegranate glaze with a bit of cinnamon, livened up with dried Servine fronds. Then for Winter you can make a simple mint sauce; you *don’t* need to kill a Vanillite just to melt its body for water, even though everyone swears it tastes better if you do.
For the fancy version of this dish, restaurants use dry-aged loin from Deerling that were slaughtered in each of the four seasons. And again… it’s delicious, it’s amazing, but you can get something that’s, like… 80% as good with fresh cuts from your local butcher.
This is still fairly complicated, but all those sauces can be made in big batches ahead of time; then when you actually serve your Deerling steaks, you can just set the sauces out in bowls, and your guests can have as much as they want of each one, in whatever order they like.
In a restaurant this will be served with expensive seasonal drinks: Cherubi wine, Cacturne mezcal, Appletun cider, Snover absinthe. But we’re trying not to break the bank, so let’s just have seasonal La Croix flavours: cherry blossom, beach plum, key lime and razz-cranberry.
As I write this, the Litwick episode is next week, but I know you’ve already recorded it, and I think maybe the one after that too? In fact, I have no idea when you’ll read this, or which Pokémon you’ll be cooking and eating. But that just means I’m UNCHAINED, BOIXS! I don’t have to boil whatever fµ¢£in’ lump of rock or chess robot or solid gold sarcophagus you’ve conned yourselves into cooking this time; I can do WHATEVER I WANT! And I wanna cook Musharna.
Now, I know what you’re thinking: why would you cook Musharna when you can smoke it? And, indeed, a very popular pastime in southeast Unova is inhaling Musharna’s powerful psychoactive “dream smoke,” which turns dreams into reality. Not only does it get you profoundly, irresponsibly high, it actually conjures some of the things you see while you’re tripping. But let’s say you don’t want that; let’s say you just want a nice meal.
Musharna feeds on dream energy, so it picks up the “flavours” of your dreams. You prepare a Musharna rump steak by feeding the Pokémon on a strict diet of pleasant dreams containing delicious flavours. This is not an exact science – if you dream of your childhood home every night, you won’t make Musharna taste like drywall and paint; more likely, it will taste like a meal you remember from that home.
There are several schools of thought on the best way to blend dream flavours. It’s most common to have your Musharna eat dreams from only one person so the meat will “taste like” their personality. Or you can feed it the dreams of several people who share a significant life experience to pick up that “taste” and each person’s subtle variations on it. Chefs are deeply divided on whether you should allow Musharna to consume any nightmares your dreamers experience. Most people say nightmares ruin the flavour, make it fetid and sour, but a few connoisseurs insist that nightmare-fed Musharna is a subtle and complex acquired taste. But most controversial of all is feeding Musharna the dreams of exactly two people with contrasting personalities. If their dreams are complementary in just the right way, your Musharna will taste like everything both people like, in perfect balance. If not, it’s a muddy mess.
And of course there are more choices in how to serve the dish – Serperior salad, or Pansage? Smoky Chandelure sauce or lively Solosis juices? Red Roselia wine or blue? But we can all agree the proper La Croix pairing here, like the passions buried in our dreams, is passionfruit.
Season 5 Finale
The Pokémon Trainer’s Guide to Hitchhiking says that the best drink in existence is the Pan-Unovan Gargle Blaster, whose effect is said to be reminiscent of having your brain smashed out with a slice of lemon encased in the solid gold body of a Cofagrigus. The recipe is said to have been brought to earth by a mysterious two-headed Beheeyem, who also left the following excellent advice: never drink more than two Pan-Unovan Gargle Blasters in one sitting unless you are a 700-kilo Copperajah with bronchial pneumonia.
The recipe begins: feed a Solosis for six days on nothing but that sinful Old Jynx Spirit. Old Jynx Spirit, of course, is the most potent spirit in the Pokémon world – brewed by wild Jynx, using psychic methods unknown to humans, to achieve an alcohol content of 106%. The mysterious biological properties of Solosis cytoplasm help to render the Old Jynx Spirit slightly less toxic to humans while rounding out its flavour and retaining its supernaturally high alcohol content. Drain the plasm to serve as the base of the drink.
Next, add one measure of ghostly seawater that has been left to steep in the spectral body of a Jellicent, infusing it with all the lost hopes and shattered dreams of countless lost souls who were drowned by Jellicent’s malevolence.
Melt an entire Vanillite into the mixture. It must be alive during the process, so that its soul does not escape and can melt, drop by drop, into the drink.
Allow four litres of Musharna dream-smoke to bubble through the drink, to infuse it with psychoactive properties.
Float a measure of Chandelure oil, carrying all the dark essences of the spirit world – fiery, smoky, mysterious, yet subtle and bittersweet.
Drop in the fiery horn of a Larvesta and wait for it to dissolve, as it fills the drink with the blazing, invigorating light of the sun.
Sprinkle powdered Haxorus scales.
Top the glass off with lemon La Croix.
Garnish with a sliver of Smoliv.
And drink… but very carefully.
Here’s to another season finale, and don’t forget, Boixs: always know where your towel is.
we’re in France
Kalosians are notorious food snobs; if you stray from tradition, or over-season the meat, or don’t let the dough rise for long enough, or even just screw up the wine pairing, they’ll eat you alive. Welcome to the big boixs’ table.
Luckily, I have just the recipe for this occasion: Gourgeist gnocchi. This is a “use the entire buffalo” recipe: you need Gourgeist’s body, long neck, wavy “hair” and internal flame, as well as a couple of other ingredients: eggs, Gogoat ricotta and some fragrant Kalosian herbs.
First, remove Gourgeist’s neck and head, set them aside, and chop up its tough pumpkin body. This step seems self-explanatory, but make sure to leave the base intact so its spectral fire keeps burning.
Next, boil, mash and purée the body; then cut off Gourgeist’s “hair.” This “hair,” as the Pokédex tells us, is really the Pokémon’s arms. Their texture is soft, squishy and very elastic. Once severed from its head, Gourgeist “hair” can be kneaded with the pumpkin purée, some Gogoat ricotta, salt, black pepper and an egg to form a dough. If you’re a purist, you could use a Pumpkaboo egg here, but just about any Pokémon egg will work.
Form your dough into long, thin “ropes,” then slice them into little bite-sized pieces. Boil these in water until they float. At this point, you could just pan-fry your gnocchi in Gogoat butter or Smoliv oil. But because this is Kalosian cooking, we have to be a little bit ✨extra✨.
Gourgeist’s long, thick neck is where it stores most of its body fat; its taste and texture are not unlike a hazelnut. Chop up the neck and head to remove any organ-y bits. Roast the pieces until fragrant, grind them into a paste and squeeze the oil out.
Gourgeist oil is liquid gold; Kalosian chefs can’t get enough of it. This is what you fry gnocchi in if you want to be a real classy b!tch. Set up the base of Gourgeist’s body, hopefully still burning with ghostly fire, and fry your gnocchi in your Gourgeist oil over that flame. The spirit-fire seals in the complex savoury-sweetness of the Pokémon’s soul, and the oil adds a nutty dimension to the flavour profile. After 1 minute, add Trevenant leaves for a hint of bitterness. Cook for 2 or 3 minutes longer and serve immediately.
No Kalosian would be caught dead pairing this with anything but sparkling white Florges wine, but if you don’t tell anyone, we can just have pamplemousse La Croix.
oh, are we doing Flabébé? That means I can get you drunk! The Flabébé line is responsible for all of Kalos’ most iconic alcoholic beverages, and those snooty Kalosian sommeliers will look down their noses at you if you don’t know which is which.
Most important is Florges wine, which is wine made by fermenting the grape-like berries that grow around Florges’ headdress. Unlike Cherubi wine and Roselia wine, Florges wine was not invented by humans: it was first made by wild Florges to share with other wild Pokémon. Florges wine comes in 5 colours, like its flowers: red, yellow, blue, orange, white. Blue is most sought-after due to its striking colour and complex flavour, but all are highly valued and each is paired with specific foods (e.g. my Gourgeist gnocchi go with a white Florges wine)
Reds are sweet, fruity dessert wines.
Yellows are rich, citrusy and paired with sour dishes.
Blue is tannic and herbal, normally served alone.
Orange is bittersweet, served with salty foods and meats.
White is light, acidic, and served with starches or vegetables.
All this is completely different from crème de Floette, which is a potent liqueur made by steeping Floette flowers in grain alcohol and sweetening it with Floette honey. It comes in the same colours as Florges wine, with similar flavour notes, but is always extremely sweet. Crème de Floette, of all colours, is served straight as a digestif, and you WILL receive judgemental looks if you order it earlier in the meal, but you have a lot more leeway if you ask for it in a cocktail.
The final Kalosian drink you need to know is hard Flabébé seltzer! This is made from Florges wine, diluted with sparkling mineral water, then infused with Flabébé nectar and petals. A little Flabébé pollen adds extra fizz and enhances the flavours. There is also a non-alcoholic version, which is exported to our universe and sold as La Croix.
only 5 episodes in and already scraping the barrel of Kalosian food, huh?
You can remove Spewpa’s stiff, wiry fur and then grind its body up and boil it down into a sort of grey-brown nutrient paste. It’s not… good… but I guess it’s high in protein. It’s marketed in Galar and Unova (not in Kalos itself, mind you) under the brand name “Spew! The Goo That’s Good For You” or something equally godawful. Like most “superfoods,” it won’t do you any harm and it’s a decent way of getting several vitamins, but it’s pretty overhyped. And that used to be all you needed to know about eating Spewpa.
But then there’s the Spewpa Challenge. And if you already know where this is going, you are free to stop reading.
The Spewpa Challenge is one of those stupid internet meme challenges, like the cinnamon challenge. The concept is simple: you just have to eat a Spewpa. Whole. Alive. There are a number of reasons this is a bad idea. First among them: that bristly fur. Whenever something tries to eat a Spewpa, its fur goes stiff and sticks out in all directions as a defence mechanism. If this happens in your mouth, you’re reduced to a spluttering wreck as you try to spit out a ball of angry tumbleweed the size of your entire head. If you manage to swallow a whole live Spewpa before that happens, you’ll probably just die of a perforated oesophagus. If it’s any consolation, the Spewpa will die too.
Luckily, almost no-one who tries the Spewpa Challenge gets that far, because if the first line of defence fails, you can expect a blast of Stun Spore from inside your own face. Stun Spore is hayfever that made a deal with Satan. The basic symptoms are uncontrollable sneezing and periodic muscle spasms, but at point-blank range it can get so much worse: nosebleeds, vomiting, muscle pain, full-body rash, it can even weaken your immune system and leave you vulnerable to secondary infections for weeks after.
The point is – Pokémon and food are both about adventure, but some adventures are not worth it, no matter how funny it’ll be on TikTok. Kalos has so much better food, and if you must have Spewpa, stick to the grey paste. You can always wash it down with some watermelon La Croix.
There’s gotta be a jumping-off point here for a hot new podcast about cooking and eating dinosaurs.
Aurorus are extinct, so no-one in Kalos eats them today except for a few of the ultra-rich who can get fossils reanimated just for dinner (and they aren’t talking). But we can make some educated guesses about what they’d taste like. Real palaeontologists have done exactly that. Dinosaurs are related to birds and crocodilians, and crocodile famously tastes like chicken, so you might guess that dinosaurs would probably taste like chicken too. On the other hand, chicken and crocodile taste that way because those animals have so much white meat made up of fast-twitch muscle, built for short bursts of activity. Mammals like pigs and cows have a lot more slow-twitch muscle, built for endurance, which makes up red meat.
Aurorus is a sauropod (specifically Amargasaurus, a medium-sized sail-backed South American sauropod). Sauropods were super-grazers, like enormous cows, that moved slowly but constantly, and ate as they went. We could expect them to have much more red meat than smaller dinosaurs. Of course, cows evolved to eat grass, which only existed at the very end of the age of dinosaurs. Giant sauropods would have eaten conifers, tree ferns and ginkgo, which would influence the taste of their meat – just like how grass-fed and grain-fed beef taste subtly different. For an Ice Pokémon like Aurorus, we could expect a boreal forest habitat and a diet overwhelmingly dominated by trees like pine and spruce.
The end result should be rich, marbled, somewhat gamey, with the strong perfumed, herbal, wintery undertones of those conifer trees. The flavour of Aurorus steaks will stand up well to strong, sweet sauces, and should respond equally well to rich and creamy or tangy and citrusy. As for the La Croix pairing… This demands something more sophisticated than lemon or orange; I think pamplemousse is the way to go.
I have an uncharacteristically simple presupposition for you this week. There is a type of edible fungus called Lion’s Mane. It looks like long, dangling threads, and when grilled it apparently tastes like lobster or crab, so it’s often used in vegetarian crab cakes. Thus, I presuppose to you that Pyroar’s mane is also made of edible fungus. The Pokédex thinks Pyroar’s mane is made of fire, and of course it’s wrong, but this is nonetheless a very spicy mushroom. Use it sparingly to liven up Parasect, Shroomish or Foongus dishes. Or use Pyroar’s mane on its own for some 5-alarm spicy Krabby cakes that no-one will be able to tell from the real thing. Just add some garlic, onions, salt and pepper, dried Trevenant leaves, maybe a little roasted ground Chespin husk and a Chansey egg for binding. Just to keep the spice level from getting too out of hand, maybe serve it with some kind of Gogoagurt-based dip, something zingy and citrusy, and make sure everyone has enough to drink. I think the only appropriate La Croix pairing this week is tangerine.
Look at Dedenne. Just look at it. It’s begging to be cooked and eaten. It’s a tender round morsel of deliciousness. Sure, you gotta devein the copper wiring, but that’s not hard, and there’s no wrong way to cook it: roasted, fried, stewed, smoked, grilled, anything. But the classic gourmet Dedenne dish is braised, whole, in orange Florges wine. First, stuff a Dedenne with bread, Budew buds, dried Simisage leaves, Chesto berries and Pumpkaboo spice (which is a spice made from roasted Pumpkaboo husks that tastes exactly like what Americans call “pumpkin spice”). Next, marinate the stuffed Dedenne with garlic, spicy Cheri berry paste, black pepper and Aromatisse saliva (look, I know that sounds fµ¢£ed up, but don’t question it; it’s fragrant, it’s floral, you’ve gotta use it sparingly, but trust the wisdom of Kalosian culinary tradition). Chop up half a Bulbasaur bulb, a pre-shelled Ferroseed, an Oddish tuber and a Diglett or two, then fry ’em all in Gogoat butter. After that, just throw all the veggies in a pot with some salt, the whole stuffed Dedenne and enough wine to cover everything, then simmer for an hour. Kalosians are wine snobs, so they’d tell you to use a top-shelf orange Florges wine. Between you and me, it’s okay to use a cheap wine and save the best for your glass. You can even get away with a yellow Florges wine if you adjust the other flavours to suit its fruitier profile.
Once the sauce has thickened, it’s ready to serve. Just sprinkle over a pinch of dried Trevenant leaves (not too much, or you’ll make it bitter) and dig in. Dedenne is a tiny Pokémon, so two people can quite conceivably eat the whole thing in one gluttonous sitting. Kalosian tradition dictates that you eat the whole Dedenne. Normally some of the organs are removed to make room for the stuffing, but the liver, heart and kidneys all stay, and the head is cooked along with everything else, as is the long, chewy tail (minus the copper wiring). Some Kalosian gourmands even claim to enjoy the feel of crunching Dedenne’s tiny fragile bones between their teeth. It’s supposed to be a very visceral experience, with the range of textures being as important as the taste.
No Kalosian would be caught dead serving braised Dedenne with anything but a superb orange Florges wine (or, at a stretch, a particularly full-bodied yellow). I won’t tell anyone if you just have a La Croix. Hell, go nuts, have the coconut cola flavour, live your best life.
I know a place in Lumiose City that does a pretty good black-and-white Pancham noodle bowl. The gimmick is everything in the dish is black or white. You cook the Pancham in two portions and throw everything together at the end with some rice noodles and a clear broth. Both portions of Pancham meat are being fried with a light batter. The “black” portion is flavoured with black pepper, black garlic, black sesame, dark soy sauce and black vinegar. The “white” is flavoured with ginger, shredded coconut, onion and white pepper. Of course, once it’s fried the “white” Pancham meat still ends up looking golden brown, so at the end it’s usually rolled in white sesame seeds and dusted with cornflour. You also sauté some black and white vegetables – parsnip, daikon radish, black beans and black peppers. This isn’t traditional Kalosian food; it’s the kind of showboating they do for the tourists. The usual drinks pairing is also gimmicky: a cocktail with gin and bamboo syrup. Luckily, that means you can order black raspberry La Croix and they won’t think you’re snubbing the wine.