Josh and His Dad Experiment: Skyrim Stew

IMG_1975OK, we’ve been having lots of snow days around here, which means way more video game playing than usual for a school week. The kids even have me playing (OK, it’s not that hard to convince me to join in, I admit). Lately, we’ve all been playing through Skyrim, which inspired Josh to propose another cooking experiment:

Apple Cabbage Stew.

If you have played Skyrim, you will know this dish. If you haven’t ever played, here’s all you really need to know. In Skyrim, you can harvest, gather, or steal various foods and cooking ingredients. Eating food restores your health. But you can also combine ingredients in cooking pots to make dishes with even more restorative properties. Apple Cabbage Stew is one such concoction.

The in-game recipe is very simple: a head of cabbage, a red apple, and a “salt pile.” A little boring, to say the least.

Josh and I decided to dress it up a little bit. We debated whether or not to limit ourselves to in-game ingredients, or to add only non-game ingredients (on the logic that it doesn’t really change the in-game recipe if we added out-of-game ingredients). In the end, the only in-game additional ingredients we used were garlic and wine. Apparently there are no onions in the land of Skyrim–just a lot of leeks.

2 strips bacon, diced
1 small onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 small head of cabbage, chopped
1 cup white wine
3-4 red apples, peeled and chopped
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon Hungarian paprika
2 cinnamon sticks
2 bay leaves

IMG_1979Place diced bacon in a steel pot over a medium flame. Once the fat starts to render, add the onion and salt and cook until it begins to brown. Add the garlic and cook for a couple of minutes.

Add the cabbage and  cook for about 3-4 minutes, until it starts to wilt. Add the wine and deglaze.

Raise the heat to high and cook for about two minutes at a low boil.

Lower to a simmer and add the apples, nutmeg, paprika, bay leaves and cinnamon. Cover tightly and cook for about an hour, or until most (but not all) of the liquid has reduced.

The end result: Josh and I agreed that it was a meal fit for Jarl Balgruuf!

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