Carl works his way through the out of this world recipes contained within the Firefly: Big Damn Cookbook and finds a galaxy of treats!
Ok, hands up out there. Who has always wanted to make your own homemade Shimmerwine, Wife Soup, Mudder’s Milk, Fruity Oat Bars and Fresh Bao? Anyone ever wanted to make your own homemade Core Cuisine or Border Planet Favourites? Come on, they make a massive change from boring old protein blocks!
Firefly: The Big Damn Cookbook | By Chelsea Monroe-Cassel
Well, now you can. Titan Books have published ‘Firefly: The Big Damn Cookbook‘. Written by Chelsea Monroe-Cassel, the book contains 70 recipes for you to cook at home based on the food seen and presented during the course of the TV show and the spin-off movie ‘Serenity‘ based on the writings of creator Joss Whedon. Broken down into five main sections:
Recipes For Shipboard Living
Recipes From The Border And Beyond
Recipes From The Core Worlds, Upper Crust
Recipes From The Core Worlds, Underbelly
Starting off with a note from Kaylee (Played by Jewel Staite in the show) we start with the basics which are in reality recipes for creating a white sauce, brown sauce, sweet chilli sauce, five-spice mix, dough for Bao, pastry dough and biscuits. These simple recipes come with easy to follow instructions and details about how to prepare and to create sauces and such to accompany the main dishes we will discover throughout the book.
We now come across the recipes for shipboard living section. Here amongst others, we will discover how to make dried spiro-balls, Pork jerky, eggy oat mush, wife soup, spaghetti casserole, chocolate protein cake and Haymaker’s punch. All the dishes contained here are easy to make and look and sound wonderful. Even though I was not convinced by the sound of Eggy Oat Mush, I must admit, after looking at the recipe and seeing what goes into the dish, I’m planning to attempt it as it sounds like it could very well be a nice and easy little meal to make and eat. Adding to its charm is the fact that it’s healthy and low fat so, with that in mind, I know what I’m having for dinner one night this week!
Recipes from the border and beyond is our next section. Here we will discover how to make such classic dishes as Garlic Griddle Bread, Bacon and Cheese toast, Goat curry, Mama Reynolds’ shoofly pie, border berry cordial and Mudder’s milk. I am a sucker for garlic bread and after seeing how the griddle version is made and how quick and easy it is, I decided to try it for myself and I have to admit, it is really nice. Ok, it’s really only a snack but nevertheless, it tastes good! The next thing I’m going to attempt from this section is the bacon and cheese toast. It looks amazing and something I can see myself eating in the lounge with a cup of hot coffee while watching something on TV. Sadly, goat curry is most certainly NOT on the menu for me! I used to hand rear goats and think they are one of the most lovable creatures on this planet. To have to eat one is like being asked to kiss a snake (which I hate), its never going to happen! Now Mudder’s milk is something though that I can see myself making and drinking. I’m teetotal (mostly) but to make a drink containing oats, stout beer and rum is something that I’m afraid just HAS to be done!
We make our way to the Recipes from the core worlds, upper-crust section. Here, we will be introduced to such mouth-watering fare as Mandarin Salad, Saffron Rice Pudding, Ginger Spiced Steamer Cake, Five-Spice Caramel, Shimmerwine and Sake Cocktail. Mandarin Salad is just that, a salad containing Mandarin oranges, goat’s cheese, apple, edamame beans, mixed greens and walnuts. Sounds very much like a Waldorf Salad but it isn’t. It’s also healthy and vegetarian and looks perfect for a detox of the body. Saffron Rice Pudding is most certainly for me! I ADORE Rice Pudding, I always have and this recipe appeals to my taste buds instantly. This is most definitely is going to get made in my kitchen within the next week but I may need to make two batches, one for the family and one all for me! Once again, even though it’s alcoholic, I find myself drawn to attempting to make Shimmerwine. It looks like a nice little drink to serve at parties and for social gatherings and sounds refreshing. Perfect for the coming festive period. The same can be said for the Sake Cocktail. Most certainly one for the party season.
We come to the final section of the book and to recipes from the core worlds, underbelly. Here we will discover culinary delights such as Badger’s Finger Sandwiches, Street Chicken Skewers, Ice Planets, Youtiao-Fried Crullers and Gunpowder Gimlet. The finger sandwiches are just as they sound, a sandwich with two types of cheese, sliced apple and cucumber with a splash of lemon juice. Street chicken skewers are something that is right up my alley. A tasty little dish made from cubed chicken thighs and using the five-spice mix listed earlier in the book. Youtiao-fried crullers are a complex little sweet dish that is basically fried dough sticks. Sweet fried dough sticks. And anyone who knows me will be able to tell you that sweet fried dough sticks are my kind of dessert! Ice planets, on the other hand, looks amazing but is already described as being a problematic dish to create. In essence, it is a three-layer cake described as having a core, mantle and crust. It is the kind of dessert that will take most of the day to create and is very involved in its creation. The Gunpowder Gimlet is a simple, Gin based drink containing green tea syrup, lime juice and club soda. Again, another nice little serving consideration for the upcoming festive season in place of Egg Nog.
These are but a handful of the dishes contained within the pages of the book. All look tasty and satisfying to try (Yes, even the Goat Curry) and I myself look forward to attempting to make most of the recipes Chelsea Monroe-Cassel has included here. Some look to be taxing to make but I’m going to attempt them anyway. The easy to follow instructions leave you in little doubt that you can make these dishes and drinks easily at home and will amaze your friends and family with different takes on the food you can serve them. Most of the ingredients we all have in our storage cupboards and only a few items will probably need to be sourced and purchased to make the delicious cuisine contained within the pages of this outstanding and interesting cookbook. Grab yourself a copy and have fun.
Firefly: The Big Damn Cookbook by Chelsea Monroe-Cassel is published by Titan Books and is available to buy NOW!
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Carl Roberts is a Senior Staff Writer and Books and Literature Correspondent for Future of the Force. He is passionate about Star Wars, Marvel, DC, Indiana Jones and Horror movies. Follow him on Twitter @CarlRoberts2 where he uses the force frequently!
Editors Note: A big thank you to our friends at Titan Books for the advance review copy.