Carl heads to Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge to sample the culinary delights found within Chelsea Monroe-Cassel’s out of this world cookbook
You have to hand it to Chelsea Monroe-Cassel, she’s done it again. Not being content with providing us with the ‘Firefly: The Big Damn Cookbook‘, she alongside Marc Sumerak has given us the official cookbook of ‘Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge‘. Inside its pages, accompanied by glorious photographs of the different dishes by Ted Thomas, we find such culinary intergalactic delights such as Nerf Kebabs, Huttese Slime Pods, Spicy Mandalorian Stew, Mustafarian Lava Buns, Coruscant Cooler and Zoochberry Surprise. Yes indeed, inside the book, we find lashings of Star Wars-themed food and drinks for us all to try to make and enjoy. Seventy recipes await us, tantalising our taste buds with their exotic names and wonderful looks.
Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge – The Official Black Spire Outpost Cookbook | By Chelsea Monroe-Cassel
Starting off with an introduction from one of Black Spires many food vendors, Strono Tuggs or ‘Cookie’ as he’s more affectionately known, we are introduced to the many different food outlets that are on offer here on Batuu. Take a seat at Ronto Roasters or saddle up to the bar at Oga’s Cantina, its completely your choice. Glorious drawings and information accompanies this wonderful intro, showing the reader that a lot of thought and planning has gone into the history given to us in the book. For the uninitiated, it’s a great little tale to bring them up to speed with the outpost and the history of it. For the fans, it’s a chance to revel in the facts that have been presented to us and to marvel at the small, intimate details we may have missed before.
Our journey through the delicacies we will encounter in the book is once again broken down into sections. Staring off with Condiments, Sauces and Garnishes, we are given the recipes to make amongst others, Nerfsteak Seasoning, Moogan Spice Syrup, Dagobah Slug Syrup and Nectose Crystals. All are seasonings, sauces or garnishes for the many dishes we will experience throughout the pages. There is a recipe for Saka Salt, in reality just Red Salt and Garam Masala mixed together. Nerfsteak Seasoning is a mixture of Paprika, Salt, Brown Sugar, Ground Cumin, Granulated Garlic, Pepper and crushed, dried savory. All are easy to make with everyday cupboard ingredients and accompany the food to perfection.
We now come across Sides, Starters and Snacks. It is here where we will discover how to make Roasted Kajaka Root, Fritzle Fries, Mon Cala Sardine Fritters and Mashed Chokeroot. Roasted Kajaka Root is basically Sweet Potatoes, Yogurt and Peanut Butter with a few added parts to it. Fritzle Fries are made of Tapioca Pearls, Yogurt and Parmesan cheese mixed with warm water, a pinch of Cayenne Pepper, half a cup of rice flour and oil for frying. 45 minutes of prep, soaking and cooking and its ready. Simple! Mon Cala Sardine Fritters are..well…Sardine Fritters! Prep and cooking time is only 20 minutes until you’re sitting down and munching away like Admiral Ackbar after a long day battling the Imperial or First Order Forces. And Mashed Chokeroot is basically mashed Parsnips with heavy cream and other basic ingredients and looks to be a nice little starter before you hit the main cuisines.
We now come to Soups and Stews. Here we have four recipes for us to indulge our cooking skills. We have Rootleaf Stew (Spicy Vegetable Stew), Topato Soup (Chicken Soup with vegetables and spices), Tatooine Terrine (A Tofu based dish with Chicken Broth, Vegetables and Indian spices) and Spicy Mandalorian Stew which I’m sure my brother (A huge Mandalorian fan) will be only too happy to attempt. A chicken Thigh based stew containing vegetables, a red apple, chicken broth and Indian spices, this looks to be a really tasty winter warmer, a dish to sit down with to heat you up after being out in the cold, biting, harsh Hoth winds. All are really easy to make and can be ready within an hour at the most from prep time to serving. Even the young padawans can come home from school and make it for themselves instead of waiting for their parents to arrive home and make it for them. Quick, simple and hearty food.
We now arrive at Bread. The perfect accompaniment to any meal, we have a selection of five different types we can turn our hands to go alongside our soup or stew. Starting with Ronto Wrappers which is like an Indian Naan flatbread, we have the recipe for Polystarch Portion Bread (Unkar Plutt is out of business!), Rey’s bread of choice, it won’t be ready as quick as in ‘The Force Awakens‘ but will only take 45 seconds cooking time in a microwave oven. It is very simple and easy to make. Five-Blossom Bread, on the other hand, is a sweet bread that will take a few hours to make and it isn’t too easy to produce. It sure looks nice but will take a lot of work to make. The same can be said for the Mustafarian Lava Buns. If they are made right, they look like a perfect representation of the planet itself. But once again, the whole making of them is hard but looks worthwhile in at least attempting. Munch-Fungus Loaf though is simpler and looks extremely tasty. A loaf which is reminiscent of a whole grain loaf of bread, this recipe contains mushrooms, soy sauce and red curry paste. It sounds like a perfect loaf to go alongside a stew or soup and I’m tempted to give it a try.
Main Courses are up next for us to attempt. Here we will discover how to make such tasty dishes as Braised Shaak Roast, Ronto Wrap, Nerf Kebabs and Huttese Slime Pods. The Braised Shaak Roast looks so completely amazing and delicious that my mouth started watering just looking at the photograph of it. The dish is basically a Pot Roast Beef Round with Pasta and vegetables, all mixed together with soy sauce and salt and pepper. This isn’t a quick dish to make but believe me when I say, it looks completely worth all the time and effort that the dish needs to be put into it. The Ronto wrap makes use of the Ronto Wrappers described in the bread section of the book as it’s used to compile a Pork and Chorizo dish that looks tasty. To make the dish, from prep to serving will take less than an hour and would make a nice change for dinner. Nerf Kebabs look hard to make but the book only gives it a medium difficulty. The dish is a ground Bison or Beef skewer mixed in with a bread rope seasoned with Parmesan cheese. It looks amazing but very involved in its making. Huttese Slime Pods sound disgusting but nothing could be further from the truth. In essence, they are Gnocchi mixed with spinach, avocado, cannellini beans and other ingredients to make a great looking pasta dish. Its simple to make and looks like a fulfilling meal by itself.
After all that delicious food, do you have any room for dessert? If you do, the next section will bring us classic galactic desserts such as Bespin Cloud Drops, Mandalorian Uj cake, Keshian Spice Rolls and Nectrose Freeze. Bespin Cloud Drops are in essence homemade meringue with cream of tartar, desert pear syrup or grenadine and light blue food colouring mixed in. The Mandalorian Uj Cake is a fruit and nut cake with a slight bite to it which looks out of this world. Keshian Spice Rolls though are all for me! They are basically Cinnamon rolls with frosting. Sorry but that’s my kind of dessert. Or snack. Or whatever! They may take upmost of three hours to make but they yield two dozen with the recipe. That should keep me going for part of the day alongside a large pot of coffee! Nectrose Freeze is Galaxy’s Edge’s own type of ice cream. A homemade batch of Vanilla ice cream and decorated with items we have the recipes for earlier in the book, this dessert is the perfect end of the meal sweet for all occasions. Zoochberry Surprise is a Mixed berry cheesecake that if my niece, bless her heart, sees this in the book, will be bothering everyone to join her in making it! She is a cheesecake nut and this dessert will certainly tempt her alongside the reader to attempt it. Just don’t ask her for a slice of it or you may experience severe injury.
Do you fancy a beverage to go alongside your meal? Here we have a section devoted to drinks you can make to enjoy along with your galactic cuisine. Among the selection, we have Moogan Tea, Coruscant Cooler, Hyperdrive and Bantha Chai. Moogan Tea is started with unsweetened ice tea with added chocolate milk, the Moogan Spice Syrup we learn to make on page 33 and other basic ingredients to make a refreshing non-alcoholic drink. The Coruscant Cooler is where we encounter the first alcoholic drink in the section. A blend of Cranberry juice, Bourbon, lime juice, Sweet Vermouth and dark cherry puree, this looks to be a perfect drink to have alongside your Braised Shaak Roast. Hyperdrive is misleading. You would expect with a name like that to be a strong alcohol-based drink. Not so. This drink is made up of white cranberry or grape juice, blueberry flavoured sports drink, lemon and lime soda and black cherry puree. Rodian Splice though makes up for the lack of alcohol as we blend Coffee Liqueur, Irish Cream Liqueur and either Bourbon or Whiskey to make a tri-coloured concoction. Bantha Chai is perhaps the closest we will get to drink the now-famous blue milk we see in the movies. A non-alcoholic milk-based drink, mixing in Arrowroot Powder, a blue butterfly pea tea bag, thinly sliced ginger root, a pinch of Cardamom, a pinch of ground Mace and sugar to taste, it takes 15 minutes in total to create but, in my opinion, needs to be tried once, just so we can say we have tried the famous blue milk.
We come to the end of our culinary journey with a sheet containing the dietary considerations the reader should pay attention to throughout the book. This page tells us what dishes are Vegetarian, Vegan and gluten-free so we can make an informed choice based on what our families and guests dietary concerns are. We also are given a measurement conversion chart informing us of the differences between the volume, weight and measures of the U.S and the metric system which is extremely handy for people not used to the United States’ system.
Once again, Chelsea Monroe-Cassel aided this time around by Marc Sumerak has come up trumps with this enjoyable and exciting cookery book for fans and non-fans alike. Every one of the seventy recipes enclosed inside the pages of the book is a delight. The instructions on how to create these mouth-watering, tasty dishes are extremely easy to follow and the reader can hardly go wrong if they attempt to make one of the galaxies magnificent dishes contained here. Monroe-Cassel has made a good name for herself in bringing the food we see in our favourite films and TV shows to us in these marvellous cookery books and I only hope she continues to enjoy her journey into discovering how to make the delights we have seen on screen. Her research is incredible in its detail and she has to take a bow for bringing us all the food we so desire in such an easy to create and fun way.
Now, if you will excuse me, my order has just been called and I’m looking forward to tucking into a bowl of Fried Endorian Tip-Yip. Sorry? I didn’t tell you about that dish? Grab yourself a copy of the book and you’ll certainly find out how to make it and what is in it. Then sit back, grab your fork and enjoy!
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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 Insight Editions and Titan Books for the advance review copies.
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Carl Roberts is a Senior Entertainment/Books and Literature Correspondent for The Future of the Force. Aside from being our horror genre aficionado, he is also passionate about Star Wars, Marvel, DC, and the Indiana Jones movies. Follow him on Twitter where he uses the force frequently!