Tensei Saki de Suterareta no de, Mofumofu Tachi to Oryouri Shimasu ~Okazari Ouhi wa my Pace ni Saikyou Desu~
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Chapter 18: The Black Cat Maid and The Chiffon Cake
The silver wolf departed back into the forest with Mr. Mohr when, it seemed, he was satisfied at having been brushed all over. A short while after seeing them off, Edgar and the rest of the wolves also returned home, so Lucien and I headed back inside the royal villa.
When I opened the front door and entered, I found a beastkin maid waiting for me.
“Lady Leticia, I have a message from the kitchen.”
A black-haired maid―Krona—was bowing politely.
On the top of her head, on either side of her headpiece, were two bushy triangular ears standing straight up. Her eyes were golden like a fishing cat’s1, with long and narrow pupils. She was a cute black cat maid with the so-called feline pretty girl look.
“From the kitchen? Does that mean…”
“They said you could use the kitchen every day from this time until it’s time to start dinner prep.”
I cheered internally as I headed upstairs to my room to change out of my wolf hair-covered clothes. When I arrived, there was already a pinafore dress waiting for me to change into. I thanked the efficient maid as I changed my clothes.
Krona came up to me and asked,”Lady Leticia, would you like me to do your hair?”
“Yes, I’ll be counting on you today, too.”
Krona’s slender fingers moved to the back of my head. With a slight, tickling touch, she quickly braided my hair and gathered it into a single knot.
“No matter how many times I see it, your hairstyling skills are impressive.”
“…Lady Leticia’s hair is worth playing with.”
Krona’s face was expressionless in response to the compliment, but the tip of her tail was swaying slightly from side to side.
The result was a hairdo that was both easy to work with and elegant, with braided hair on either side of the head and a dark red and white ribbon tying it up at the back. As I thanked her and stood up, Krona stared at me intently.
“What is the matter, Krona?”
“You will be making sweet pastries, correct, Lady Leticia?”
“Yes, I intend to. Would you like to observe and sample the food?”
The answer was immediate. It seemed that, here as on Earth, many women liked sweets.
Just when I thought that I understood that feeling, I heard Krona muttering to herself.
“Fufufu~ I did it! That should secure me some precious sweets!”
…Krona was a maid who did things at her own pace, in keeping with her feline appearance. You might have thought, “She keeps her own pace even though she’s a maid?” Despite this, Krona’s work ethic was excellent.
As a maid, she knew exactly what lines she couldn’t cross and paid me a certain amount of respect. The other maids were somewhat hesitant since I came from a foreign country, so she naturally became the one I most often asked to take care of my everyday necessities.
Although there were some trusted maids that I had brought with me from the Duke’s residence, I didn’t think it was a good idea to be stuck with people from my own country forever. Starting with the unflappable Krona, I wanted to gradually get to know the maids’ personalities.
With that, I got dressed and went to the kitchen.
Though small compared to the Duke’s residence, the kitchen was still spacious enough for more than ten cooks to work in it at once. The ingredients I had ordered in advance were lined up on the cooking table.
Lucien placed the cookware next to the eggs, sugar, and other ingredients. The metallic utensils were the ones I had been laboriously making using “Seiren” for today’s baking.
With all the tools and ingredients in place, it was time to start cooking—when suddenly the head maid came into the kitchen.
“Krona! Come here! We’re unexpectedly a little behind on polishing the silverware, and we need more helping hands. Lady Leticia, I’m sorry, but I’m going to have to borrow Krona.”
Krona let out a regretful sigh as the head maid dragged her away. I felt a little sorry for her, but she had more work to do and it couldn’t be helped. I would bring her some sweets later, but I decided to concentrate on cooking for now.
The first step was to separate the egg whites and yolks. I then used magic to create ice and put it in a box with a bowl of egg whites to keep it cool.
Although it could be cooked without cooling, lowering the temperature beforehand would make it easier for the meringue to form.
This was my first dish since coming to this country. I chose to commemorate the occasion with a chiffon cake.
Though this country was different, the food here was still covered in spices, and my tongue was tired of strong flavours. So I thought I would cleanse my palate with a chiffon cake because it was light and brought out the flavour of the ingredients.
While the egg whites were chilling, I decided to combine the egg yolks and sugar to make the chiffon batter. As I was whisking, I slowly drizzled in vegetable oil.
It seemed the oil had been made from the seeds of a plant called Guina. It tasted and looked like salad oil, so I used it as a substitute.
Some of the ingredients of this world were the same as the ones on Earth, while some of them I had never seen before, and others ran the gamut from similar to dissimilar.
Though I had been able to find some familiar ingredients such as cabbages and onions, eggplants apparently didn’t exist here. There was, however, a vegetable that could be called a pseudo-eggplant. It had an oval shape and red skin.
Edible vegetables that were yellow inside and tasted just like eggplants seemed like a good substitute for what I had known on Earth.
I decided to begin with the most affordable ones, and when I got used to them, I would explore more ingredients. I decided to start first with something that I was familiar with, which could be made with only a few ingredients. I had some concerns about the chiffon cake, but I hoped to succeed with magic and ingenuity.
I whisked as I added more and more ingredients. I used to use a hand mixer on the Earth, but now it was all manual.
Ora! My muscles! The mixed ingredients! The results of my muscle training are here at last!
While praying silently and exerting myself, I rotated between low and high speeds. I kept an eye on the inside of the bowl as I moved the whisk single-mindedly. Finally, I smoothed the meringue with a wooden spoon until there were no peaks left, and then poured the batter into my homemade chiffon cake mould.
Chiffon cakes needed to be turned upside down and allowed to cool after baking to puff up properly. So I used the mould I made by “Seiren”, which was shaped in such a way that a wine bottle could be inserted into its centre and fixed upside down.
First, I placed the mould in the preheated oven and removed it when the cake was golden brown.
Then, I turned it upside down for a while.
When I was sure that it was no longer hot, I used a metal skewer and a palette knife to remove it from the mould.
Great texture. It wasn’t sticky or deflated, and when I pressed on it, it retained a soft elasticity. Part of the bottom didn’t come out of the mould well, but that was charming in its own way.
Despite being the first of its kind from another world, it turned out quite delicious.