Wookiee Hut Cuisine presents:
Twisted-up Meat, Potatoes, and Two Veg
by SuSu, MaceVindaloo

Mara Jade found herself in love with the man who grew up so differently from her, she could hardly believe it. It look a long, long while to decide that she really wanted to marry him. Part of the reason they were an ideal couple: she knew how to care for Luke when he was injured. He'd inevitably get into some form of hand-to-hand combat — an inevitable hazard of his job as Jedi Knight and protector of the galaxy. No matter how cynically people would state this, the truth is that at his core, Luke remained the wide-eyed and innocent farmboy from Tatooine, and genuinely felt he was doing good, that he had an obligation to do good — he, like his father before him, was truly the purest product of the Force.

And Mara knew that someone as pure and innocent as luke required a pure and innocent cure: good meals, cooked simply. Being a farmboy, Luke liked the GFFA equivalent of meat-and-potatoes; being raised in the Imperial palace on Imperial City, Mara was culturally more sophisticated in every way. She'd give him what he wanted, but perhaps not what he expected!

Luke had to admit — the unexpected twists and turns of life with Mara were more than worth any disappointments he may have suffered in his expectations. Anyway, Mara's changes to the basic meat-and-potatoes-with-two-veg plate were delicious, and something he knew she would do only if she loved him.

Broiled Chuck Steak with Bulgogi-style Steak Sauce
There are a couple of twists on this steak: it's broiled, rather than grilled or pan-fried, and the sauce is a blend of oils, spices, and fresh herbs. The former was more practical than attending to a smoky grill or the splattered fat of panfrying, and the latter was a special touch that could not be bought in a bottle. Obviously, you have to like someone very very much to make this tasty meal, a point Mara knew she wanted to make to Luke, without enduring the embarassment of actually having to say it!
    Broiled Steak
  • 1 large boneless chuck steak, about 2 lbs / 1 kg, cut at least an inch thick (the more well-done you like your meat, the thinner it should be cut)
  • kosher salt
  • pepper
Turn on the broiler and if the rack is adjustable, set the rack to about 4 inches / 10 cm from the heating element. Line a heatproof baking sheet with foil (usually, glass or ceramic dishes won't work — be sure to check the manufacturer's specifications. To be safe, use metal when broiling).

The temperature of the steak when it goes into the broiler depends on how well you like it cooked: the rarer you prefer your steak, the colder it can be. The aim is to have a wonderful crust on the steak; if your preference is toward well-done, you should have a thinner piece of meat at room temperature. For rare, a thicker cut, straight out of the refrigerator.

Place the steak onto the foil-lined pan and season liberally with salt and pepper on the top side. Place into the broiler for 5 to 10 minutes; check after 5. If the steak is crusty and browned, turn it over, season the other side of the meat, and return to the broiler for 3 to 5 minutes, or until done to your liking.

Remove from the oven and losely cover with foil and let rest for 5 to 10 minutes before serving. To server, you can put the whole steak onto the diner's plate — a humungous treat! Or slice the meat against the grain and serve. If you prefer, you can cut the meat parts away from the connective fatty bits, but many people like the look and flavor of the well-browned fat.

Serves 4 o 6, conventionally.

    Homespun Gochu-jan
  • ½ cup white or red miso paste
  • ½ cup cayenne pepper
  • ½ cup soy sauce
In a bowl and using a rubber scraper, mix the miso paste, cayenne pepper, and soy sauce very well. Be careful not to loft the cayenne pepper powder — it's very spicy-hot! Store in the refrigerator, very well sealed. Makes about 1 cup.

    Bulgogi-style Sauce and Marinade
  • ½ cup Gochu-jan
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1-inc / 2½ cm piece of fresh ginger
  • ¼ cup cider vinegar
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • ¼ cup soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon black pepper
  • 1 cup olive oil
  • ¼ cup sesame seed oil
  • ½ sweet onion, or 2 large shallots
  • ½ cup cilantro, leaves and stems
In the working bowl of a food processor fitted with the regular chopping blade, add the gochu-jan, garlic, ginger, cider vinegar, brown sugar, soy sauce, and pepper. Mix to combine. While the machine is still running, add the olive oil in a thin stream — treat it like you're making mayonnaise. When the mixture thickens, add the sesame oil, the onions or shallots, and cilantro. Makes about 2 cups of sauce. Store in a jar with a tight-fitting lid, and efrigerate till you need it; you may need to shake the jar before using it.

To make a dipping sauce, mix together ½ cup of the Bulgogi-style Sauce with the zest and juice of 1 lemon, and season to taste with salt. However, the sauce is good as is, as a steak sauce!

Back to the Menu: Twisted-up Meat, Potatoes, and Two Veg

Succotash Japonais
Succotash is a simple but rich dish. It's rather humble in that it comprises of corn kernals and lima beans, cooked in bacon drippings and cream. The cream makes it very comforting for those who need healing.

One day, Luke and Mara were in a grocery pretending to shop for dinner; they were actually trailing someone. But she learned more about Luke than she did of the perpretrator because she stopped in front of the freezer case and said nonchalantly to her partner, "We should have lima beans for supper." To her astonishment, Luke burst out into tears and wailed, "You KNOW I hate lima beans!"

He later claimed that he was "getting into the mission" and pretending to argue with her, but Mara realized that he never ate lima beans when they were served to him. He'd actually go through the trouble of picking them out and eating everything else.

So, because he was convalescing, and because she actually did love him, she invented a version of this dish without lima beans, and it was somehow more elegant this way, too.
  • 1 strip bacon, chopped
  • 1 cup frozen, shelled soybeans (edamame)
  • 1 cup frozen kernal corn
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • salt, to taste
  • pepper, to taste
In a cold skillet, place the bacon and cook over low heat. Render the fat and allow the meat bits to cook till crispy. Add the soybeans, corn, peas, and cream. Place a lid over the pot and cook over low heat until the cream comes to a simmer. Cook for an additional 3 to 5 minutes, or until done to your liking. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serves 6 to 8.

Back to the Menu: Twisted-up Meat, Potatoes, and Two Veg

Roasted Asparagus
Mara loved asparagus cooked in any manner, but Luke demurred when given the choice. He claimed that asparagus was always slimy and made his urine smell!

Mara knew that asparagus makes everyone's urine smell, but some people lack the gene to smell it, and so Luke was overly self-conscious. She couldn't do anything about that, but she could make the asparagus not-slimy by dry-roasting the stalks in the oven. They were much tastier — more asparagus-y — and went well with roasted and grilled meats.

Well seasoned with salt and pepper, Luke had to admit that the ones Mara served to him were so good that he didn't think of the side effects of eating them at all.
  • asparagus, about 4 spears per person
  • olive oil
  • salt
  • pepper
Heat the oven to 400°F / 190°C.

Trim the asparagus by an inch or two. Place on a foil-lined baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast in the hot oven till browned and dessicated looking, about 20 minutes. Serve hot or cold.

Back to the Menu: Twisted-up Meat, Potatoes, and Two Veg

Baked Sweet Potatoes
Like many men, Luke preferred white potatoes, and he really didn't know the differences between them in taste. They were not a bad nutritional choice, but Mara thought he should be eating foods with more vitamins and fiber, and so she opted to bake sweet potatoes — which really weren't potatoes at all — to accompany Luke's get-well dinner.

He was rather astonished at the orange color, but they did look like potatoes and Mara did put a generous pat of butter in the cleft. The potato stand-in had a more pudding-like texture but were not really overly sweet at all. They were actually so tasty that Luke nearly forgot to eat his steak — which would have been an odd twist to the meal for a farmboy!
  • 1 medium-sized sweet potato, per person
Heat the oven to 400°F / 190°C. Prick the skin of the sweet potato with a fork. Just once will do it, to prevent the skins from bursting randomly. Place on a foil-lined baking sheet. Bake in the oven for an hour, or till a skewer poked in goes through without resistance. Serve split, with butter, salt, and pepper at the table.

Back to the Menu: Twisted-up Meat, Potatoes, and Two Veg

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