2 days later.
“Ryouma-sama, it’s almost time for your appointment.” [Riviola]
“Thank you, I’ll be leaving then.” [Ryouma]
I’ve been working at the hospital since morning when the maid, Riviola-san, called out to me.
Today we’ll be using one of the security department’s meeting room to discuss the preserved food we’ve been researching over lunch with Serge-san and the others, so I quickly cleaned up, bid Dr. Mafral goodbye, and then left the hospital.
Some preparations did have to be done, but most of it has already been taken care of by the maids, so all I really had to do was to check their work.
Before long the president of the Morgan Company, Serge-san, the president of the Saionji Company, Pioro-san, and his wife, Kurana-sana, arrived.
“Thank you for being able to take the time out to make it today.” [Ryouma]
“And thank you for inviting us.” [Serge]
“I’ve been looking forward to this meeting.” [Pioro]
“Ryouma-han, it’s been awhile.” [Kurana]
“It’s been awhile indeed, Kurana-san. Come, please take a seat.” [Ryouma]
It was time for lunch to start.
“We have several options for today’s lunch. Most of these are still experimental, so they’re not that varied, but in place of variety, the servings are much bigger than usual. Please feel free to choose what you like.” [Ryouma]
On the table of the meeting room were three wooden boxes. Within them were several shiny pouches with a paper attached that identified the name of the dish and the date of production.
“Oh! It’s a little different from usual, but this is waterproof cloth, isn’t it? The food inside is liquid, but with a bag made out of a material that doesn’t let liquid pass, even liquid-based food can be stored, though this dish doesn’t seem to be of the pickled sort.” [Serge]
“The bag isn’t the only thing different, I take it? After all, this seems to have been made two months ago.” [Pioro]
“This one was made three months ago.” [Kurana]
The guests chose their dish while chatting among themselves.
The main dish for today’s lunch is my preserved food prototype, the Retort Pack!
Just as Serge-san mentioned, the coating used in the pouches were concocted with a greater hardening liquid ratio than usual. Furthermore, by adding in an aluminum coil, the resulting cloth is not only impervious to water, but also possesses excellent heat resistance and light-blocking properties. Such a cloth can then be made into a bag or a Retort Pouch. The finished dish is stored inside, then the air is removed and the pouch sealed, upon which a ‘pressure cooker’ custom made by Dinome’s Workshop is used to sterilize the pouch by heat.
Although the ingredients differ from the Retort Pack from Earth, the procedure itself is almost exactly the same. Maintaining high temperature and high pressure while cooking is difficult, and in fact, I’ve tried it many times even before going to Fatma Territory, but it was all to no avail. Fortunately, with the introduction of the pressure cooker, this problem has already been solved.
I’ve tried enveloping a pot with barrier magic to apply the pressure, but the result was either too much pressure, resulting in the pot exploding, or the heat being regulated too much, resulting in insufficient heat and failure to sterilize the dish.
When I’ve gotten more used to Barrier Magic and my barriers have gotten strong enough that even I could tell they’ve improved, I started succeeding occasionally, but it was mostly a matter of luck. In the end, it ended up being more an exercise to improve my Barrier Magic and less an experiment to realize the Retort Pack.
But everything changed when the pressure cooker from Dinome’s Workshop arrived. With it, I can cook at a high temperature and at a high pressure, allowing me to safely make Retort Packs without damaging the pouch, while ensuring sufficient sterilization. I have nothing but gratitude and respect to Dinome-san for making the pressure cooker for me.
Thanks to him, I’m able to create something of much higher quality than otherwise possible.
Mass-production still isn’t possible, but we’re still only in the trial stages, so it’s not an issue.
“I’ve identified the food items when they were brought here with the Identify spell, so I can guarantee that they’re fit for consumption. In the unlikely event that something does happen, we have a hospital in this very building.” [Ryouma]
“Bringing up the topic of a hospital just makes me worry more.” [Pioro]
Pioro-san laughed, then chose the oldest item from the selection. As the president of a company that handles food items, he must be curious about the taste of a food that’s been preserved for an extended period. His wife, Kurana-sana, chose a different dish, but she also made sure to choose the oldest.
“I shall go and reheat these then.” [Rurunez]
The maid, Rurunez-san, took the pouches they chose, and placed them inside pots that have been set atop a magic tool akin to a tabletop stove.
“All that’s left is to wait for the food to be reheated, so how about we talk about something else in the meantime?” [Ryouma]
The maid, Lilian-san, appeared with superb timing to bring hot water, while Riviola-san brought transparent cups made out of the hardening liquid sheet. Although I’d explained to them beforehand what they were supposed to do, when it came to the real thing, their movements were so perfect that there was nowhere left for me to help.
“Let’s have a cup of tea first, shall we?” [Ryouma]
“These cups… They’re the same as the ones I saw during the wedding ceremony, aren’t they? Even without color, I must say they’re really something… Though I suppose what really matters here isn’t the cup but the contents.” [Serge]
“Put it in the cup, and then take it out. There’s a pot of hot water too, so I’m sure you’re supposed to pour that in too.” [Pioro]
“There’s a line inside the cup. Please pour until that point.” [Ryouma]
“Allow me.” [Kurana]
Kurana-san elegantly took the glass pot and poured hot water for them.
In the blink of an eye, the fragrant aroma of coffee filled the room.
“Wow, what a fragrant smell. It’s just like ‘kafee’, but it’s not.” [Serge]
“This is tea made from the root of a Dante Flower. It’s drank as medicine in some regions.” [Pioro]
“As expected of you, Pioro-san. And Serge-san too, I’m surprised you were able to understand so much just from the smell. I wanted to make black tea for this occasion, but the taste just didn’t sit right with me, so I made Dante Tea instead.” [Ryouma]
To be honest, I’m not really that sensitive to the minute differences between food items. In fact, my tongue and nose are both completely clueless regarding how Dante and coffee differ. I haven’t had coffee since coming to this world, but I’m sure anyone can easily fool me about where certain coffee beans were produced even if I could smell them myself.
I suppose Pioro-san can’t afford to be like that, though, being the president of a company and all. They did mention Kaffee earlier. Maybe I should get Pioro-san to send me some next time.
While I was thinking that to myself, my guests tasted my instant Dante Coffee.