Chapter 40 - Rice
Zhao was depressed to the point of collapsing when he saw the rice for the first time .
He had been afraid that there was no rice in this world, and thought that was the reason why Meirin didn't give him any rice to eat . But now he discovered that rice was something that was used to feed the slaves .
At this point, they had only lit up the stove fire, but Zhao rushed over when he saw that one of the female slaves was preparing to pour the oil . "Wait a minute! Before you pour the oil . . . "
The female slave saw Zhao charging over, so thinking that she might have done something wrong, she immediately knelt down . "Please, Master, punish me . "
Zhao slowed his outburst, then shook his head . "I'm not going to punish you . Just listen to me . Before you pour the oil into the pot, you should use a bowl to wash the rice . You put in some water, wash the rice properly, then dump the water back out . And then you put the rice in the pot . " While saying this, Zhao took out a copper basin .
The female slave didn't know what Zhao wanted to do, but she took the copper basin from him and put some rice in it . She then went to the spring and washed the rice properly . After that, she brought the rice back and poured it into the pot .
Zhao then added, "Keep using the copper basin to get as much washed rice as possible, and then pour some water into the pot until it's above the rice . "
The female slave obeyed and told the other slaves . They started pouring water into the pot with the rice, until the pot was almost full . Zhao had given the slaves a few copper basins he had pulled from the barn to complete the task, while a few slaves kept the fire burning .
Zhao just wanted to give them a meal of rice that was actually very simple to make . In his past life, he lived on his own, so he was very good at making rice . He understood the ratio of rice to water . But now in this pot, he told them to put more water than usual because the firewood directly touched the bottom of the pot, so the heat was relatively hotter than normal .
They all looked at Zhao, who told them to boil rice . The slaves had only heard of boiling vegetables to make soup . They had never seen this kind of method to cook rice before .
It didn't take long before the rice fragrance started to seep out of the pot . This rice hasn't been grown with pesticides and fertilizers, so the natural flavor of the outer bran was good .
Each of the slaves were issued a cheap wooden bowl and spoon to use . Although a bowl, spoon, and cup were simple things, the slaves were very happy that they got to use them .
Zhao was staring at the pot of rice when Meirin came out of the hut . "Master, how do you use those kitchen tools to make a fire?"
It seemed like Meirin was having a little bit of trouble . Zhao followed her into the hut . He had not been too concerned about the kitchen tools, but now that he had a good look, it turned out that all the tools were electrical appliances, such as rice cookers, pancake makers, and a bunch of other things . Everything was electric . Zhao silently looked for any wires, but he didn't even know if there were any, and the walls of his hut was layered with thatch .
Seeing all of these things, Zhao looked at Meirin and wished that she would make some pancakes and fill them with fried vegetables, like some sort of pizza .
Just to be clear, that pizza wouldn't be the same as the ones from his past life . It would be a pancake topped with vegetables and ham . Back on Earth, Zhao used to live in China, where Chinese cuisine was world famous . But in this world, where they normally didn't eat rice, but mostly bread, he thought that they would be able to make something like a pizza pie .
Zhao taught Meirin the usage of these electric appliances, and she learned of how convenient they were . There was no need for fire .
Seeing as how Meirin could now use the tools, Zhao didn't stay in the kitchen . He turned around and opened the door, which let in the smell of rice .
Zhao looked out, while Meirin whispered, "Master, it smells really fragrant . How did you make it?"
Zhao smiled and shrugged . "All you need to do is add in the right amount of water and then you can make some delicious rice . How can frying the hard rice grains directly compare to this? And to make it even more delicious, you can use some oil and vegetables to make a soup, then you could make a meal out of it . It would taste so much better . "
Meirin had a look of worship . "Ah, Master really knows such wonderful things . "
Zhao couldn't help but blush . This was something that everyone knew in China, but it seemed like he had just taken the credit for it .
Zhao went out to the pot of rice, which seemed to be ready . He picked up a corn stalk and used it to push off the copper basin that was covering the pot . The copper basin fell to the ground, releasing a large amount of heat from the pot, which caused Zhao to step backwards . Out of the heat came a full-bodied flavor of rice that smelled slightly sweet . The fragrance was even stronger than the rice from his past life . Zhao's mouth started to water .
Once the heat dispersed, the pot of rice revealed its true colors . It wasn't white like how Zhao imagined rice to be, but a little yellow . However, the fragrant smell was incredible .
Zhao pulled a spoon out of the barn and then slowly scooped up a spoonful of rice . Meg wanted to stop him, but Zhao moved the rice into his mouth too fast . Everyone couldn't help but stare as their master ate the rice that only slaves would eat .
Zhao closed his eyes as the fragrant flavor of rice filled his every being . It was savory and delicious, with a chewy, flexible texture . He then slowly put down the spoon as he opened his eyes . The slaves and Meg were all looking at him, and Zhao couldn't help but be embarrassed . "Please don't look at me . Go on and eat . If you absolutely don't think it's tasty, then you don't have to eat it . We can re-do the meal later . "
The slaves didn't dare to move, although they did look eager . Zhao understood that it was because he was here, so the slaves tried not to act recklessly . He sighed and turned to Meg, and said, "Meg, let's go into the hut . "
Meg understood what Zhao was trying to do, so she immediately nodded . "Yes, Master . Let's enter the hut and see what Grandma is making . "
Zhao smiled . Meg was becoming more considerate, on top of being a kind and gentle girl . The two called Blockhead and Rockhead into the hut with them .
Daisy and Ann didn't follow . They wanted to stay and try out the rice to see how delicious it was . The moment Zhao and Meg went inside, the slaves immediately surrounded the pot, eating the rice and singing its praises .
Then one of the male slaves noticed a thick layer of crust in the pot . He had never seen this before . The slave was curious about the rice crust, so he grabbed some with his hand and sniffed it . It seemed to have an attractive scent . He eventually failed to block the temptation to bite it .
The moment he tasted it, his eyes brightened, and he quickly took a second bite . Since the pot wasn't small, there was a large amount of crust . A single person naturally couldn't finish all of it by himself, so the slave passed around the crust to everyone else . Before long, the slaves started to make a second pot of rice .
Meirin and Zhao, in fact, had been standing by the hut door, watching the slaves . The moment they saw the slaves making rice for the second time, Zhao immediately went out to them and said to the slaves . "I think that you will need another pot for soup . Although eating rice is good and well, some soup would be good too . You can't just survive on rice, you're going to need some vegetables . "
Hearing what Zhao said, the slaves knew that he had been watching them, and they couldn't help but feel a little embarrassed . But still, they moved according to what Zhao told them . They were very grateful to him .
A lot of these people were on the verge of crying, because they had never eaten something so delicious .