Chapter 171: This Fish... Is Suitable for Grilling
Translator: OnGoingWhy Editor: Vermillion
Since the tribe was situated in the Illusory Spirit Swamp, the serpent-men frequently consumed this type of fish. They were also extremely familiar with its cooking method and the dish could be considered a local cuisine.
That scrunched up expression on Bu Fang's face, as if he had just eaten Coptis Chinensis, was simply baffling to them.
The freshness and sweetness of the fish was perfectly expressed in the fish soup. The culinary skills of the serpent-woman chef who made the fish soup were pretty good as well. The dish was perhaps not as meticulous as dishes made by humans but the taste was still passable in the eyes of Wu Yunbai and the others.
As a result, everyone's attention was focused on Bu Fang. Many of the serpent-men were angrily glaring at him. The head elder and the others were frowning as well.
On the contrary, a faint smile was on her lips as Wu Yunbai watched Bu Fang with great interest. This young man... Was he really not here to make jokes? This was the serpent-men's tribe after all. Even if their fish soup really tasted that horrible, there would be no need for him to say that out loud. Furthermore... the taste of the fish soup was still pretty good.
"Human, what are you saying?! My mother's fish soup is the most delicious in the entire tribe, what do you even know? Besides, do you know how to cook in the first place?!" A young serpent-girl angrily glared at Bu Fang and let out a snort while waving around her exquisite tail in frustration.
The serpent-men around her all nodded in agreement. Elder sister Mu's culinary skill might not be number one in the entire serpent-men race, but she was unparalleled within the tribe. Even though the fish soup was not the dish that she was most proficient in, no one was tired of drinking it.
The alluring serpent-woman called elder sister Mu, who was also the mother of that young serpent-girl, was looking at Bu Fang with a dissatisfied expression while holding a ladle in her hand.
Bu Fang was surprised for a moment. He did not expect his words to trigger such a reaction from the people around him. He was merely stating a fact. From his point of view, the taste of the fish soup was indeed horrible.
As a chef, Bu Fang's taste was already accustomed to the level of his own culinary skill. If a horrible-tasting dish entered his mouth, he would lose his appetite and his expression would turn ugly. Spitting out the fish soup was just a subconscious action...
In simpler terms, his taste buds became even more sensitive after frequently eating dishes filled with true energy. As his sense of taste dramatically improved, even the tiniest bit of flavor in a dish was noticeable. Therefore, he was even more particular about the flaws in the dishes.
This sort of improvement in one's sense of taste was a tremendous help for chefs. It raised their precision in judging the taste of ingredients and their preparation as well.
Bu Fang did not have any intention of humiliating her. It was really just a subconscious action...
The people around him were dumbfounded from the blank expression on Bu Fang's face. Even elder sister Mu was amused.
In the first place, she was not someone who was easily angered. Perhaps her dish really did not suit Bu Fang's tastes, everyone had their own preference after all. Unexpectedly, elder sister Mu did not feel the blame was on Bu Fang.
After Bu Fang recovered from his surprise, he heard the young serpent-girl's words and broke into a smile. He gave her a glance and said, "Of course I know how to cook. I am a chef as well."
Bu Fang's voice was not loud but instantly caused the room to quiet down. Wu Yunbai felt as if her worldview was being renewed once more. The young man in front of her eyes was a chef? Of all things, a chef?
However, since you were a chef, what were you doing in the serpent-men tribe? I always thought you were an adventurer!
Should a chef not be preparing food in a kitchen?
"Oh? Are you a chef as well? Pleased to meet you. It seems that you're dissatisfied with the dish that I made." Elder sister Mu was surprised for a moment and then her expression became serious.
If Bu Fang was a chef, his fussiness toward food was understandable. The sense of taste of a chef was far more sensitive than ordinary people and they were more particular about the taste of their food. It was much easier to please an ordinary person with a dish than a chef.
Bu Fang nodded and slowly walked toward elder sister Mu with the steaming bowl of fish soup in his hands.
"Overall, your fish soup is still passable. Every single step was executed very well but the steps themselves could only be considered conventional. Furthermore, you do not understand the characteristics of this fish. Some fish are suitable for making soup while this particular fish isn't."
As Bu Fang solemnly walked toward elder sister Mu, he could not help but enter his venomous tongue mode. Whenever he tasted a dish, he would always lose his self control and start evaluating the dish.
"That is not to say that this fish cannot be used for cooking soup but you're lacking the required seasoning. For example, if some Spring Sun Herb was added during the cooking process, it would not only remove the fishiness but also the increase the tastiness of the fish. But what I want to say is that making soup with this fish is simply a waste. Even drying this fish first and then steaming it would still be more delicious than making fish soup..."
As Bu Fang continued prattling on, everyone else in the room was starting to drift into drowsiness. After all, none of them were chefs and their understanding of food had not reached such a profound level. Whether the Spring Sun Herb or control over the heat or the characteristics of the fish... None of them understood anything.
On the contrary, elder sister Mu's eyes grew brighter and brighter while listening to Bu Fang's appraisal because she realized his words were all true.
The taste of the fish when first dried and then steamed was indeed much more delicious compared to the fish soup. As for the Spring Sun Herb... she did not fully understand either.
After Bu Fang was done talking, he became expressionless once more. He was someone with few words in the first place. It was just that he became extremely talkative when evaluating dishes...
"You... You... After saying so much, why don't you make something tastier than my mother's fish soup if you're so capable! If you're just going to criticize my mother's dish like this, then you're all talk and no action! You're a bad person!" The young serpent-girl was filled with grievance. Bu Fang was not holding back when he evaluated the dish. After witnessing the dish made by her mother whom she revered getting belittled in such a manner, her eyes welled up with tears.
Noticing that her daughter was about to burst into tears, elder sister Mu hurriedly consoled her.
"This young man's words are correct, there's still room for improvement in my cooking. After hearing his appraisal today, I've learnt a lot. What are you crying for? We should be thanking him instead," elder sister Mu softly said while caressing the bridge of her daughter's nose with a finger.
The young serpent-girl immediately stopped sobbing and fiddled with her hands while pursing her lips together. With her eyes reddened, she softly sniffled while looking at her mother.
The corners of Bu Fang's lips were twitching. There was basically no difference between this young serpent-girl and a human child. She immediately resorted to crying when a disagreement occurred... Nonetheless, he was in the wrong for making a young girl cry.
Bu Fang pondered for a moment and then said, "How about this, since it's still early, I'll cook a dish using fish and let everyone have a taste. Hopefully, everyone will enjoy it. It's also a compensation from me for taking the liberty to evaluate the dish."
Bu Fang's words caused the people around him to exclaim in astonishment once more. This human... was really a chef? And he was actually going to personally prepare a meal?
Wu Yunbai's eyes widened with incredulity... Was this fellow serious? If his dish turned out to be terrible... he would become a laughingstock!
Even though there were some similarities between humans and serpent-men, no one could guarantee that their tastes were the same.
Elder sister Mu looked at Bu Fang in surprise. Her eyes slightly narrowed as she saw the confident look on Bu Fang's face. She straightened her back and said, "It would be our pleasure. Here is the cooking stove, I'll tidy it up first for you to use."
Elder sister Mu swiftly cleaned up the cooking stove and then looked toward Bu Fang.
Bu Fang did not immediately start cooking. First, he pinched the fish prepared for him by the serpent-men. It was an extremely plump first grade spirit beast fish.
After tasting the fish earlier on, Bu Fang already had an idea about the best method to prepare it.
This type of fish was not suitable for making soup but it was extremely suitable for another cooking method.
And that was... grilling.
 Coptis Chinensis() - It is a medicinal herb that's particularly known for its bitterness in China.