Cooking Eozea | Feature Image

Cooking Eorzea | Feature Image

I am a huge proponent of being able to play older video games. There are simply so many amazing titles, ranging from SNATCHER and Panzer Dragoon Saga to Chulip and D that simply are not available to play on modern day consoles. I always think it is amazing to see how the video game industry has evolved in both gameplay, storytelling, visuals, and even the development and publication side of things since Pong was first installed in a bar back in 1972. As certain video games become harder and harder (and more and more expensive) to find to pick up and play, there is a real danger that these titles will become lost works of art that future generations will not be able to enjoy. After all, when was the last time you heard someone talk about how the themes that Hideo Kojima wrote about in SNATCHER are clearly also present in DEATH STRANDING several decades later?

And all of this is why I have been looking so forward to FINAL FANTASY PIXEL REMASTER to be released on the PlayStation 4 and Nintendo Switch. Until these titles were re-released in the past week, you would have to dig out your Nintendo DS/3DS, your PSP or PlayStation Vita, your original NES/Super NES, your original PlayStation One or PlayStation 2, or import a WonderSwan console to play some of these games – with FINAL FANTASY III and FINAL FANTASY V being the hardest to find. Yes, SQUARE ENIX is undoubtedly re-releasing these titles to make money off of their older library. But: this is also a way to preserve these titles into the future.

After all, FINAL FANTASY is a storied franchise that all other JRPGs are ultimately compared against. By making the first six FINAL FANTASY titles available to buy and play by anyone with an internet connection and a current generation console, SQUARE ENIX is ensuring that these titles will live on and that a new generation of gamers will be able to idolize and fall in love with Terra, Cecil, Bartz, and everyone else just like I did when I was a kid who was discovering video games.

I personally cannot wait to finally start up FINAL FANTASY V as soon as possible and I hope to enjoy it with all the Love, Eorzean Style, that I can muster.

If you’ve missed an installment of Cooking Eorzea, you can check out all the prior recipes here.

Recipe of the Week

Chestnuts and Lentils are the 31st recipe in The Official FINAL FANTASY XIV Online Cookbook. This recipe comes from Bentbranch Meadows part of The Black Shroud, and has a difficulty rating of ‘Easy.’ I am not too worried about cooking this week’s Cooking Eorzea dish, as it seems to just be a lot of vegetable mincing. I am a bit worried and surprised that there are no spices or seasonings that I am adding, but we will see how it goes.

Here is what the Chestnuts and Lentils soup is supposed to look like:

Cooking Eorzea | Chestnuts and Lentils Professional Photo.
Image courtesy of Insight Editions.

Featured Ingredient of the Week

Cooking Eorzea | Fennel bulb
Photo by author.

This week’s featured ingredient is fennel! When I first went looking for fennel, I was shocked at how big the fronds were. Apparently, fennel is part of the carrot family of plants, and the fronds can grow up to eight feet tall. When I was cutting it up for this week’s recipe, I was absolutely surprised at how aromatic the bulb smelled, and the scent absolutely flooded my kitchen. This is a simply gorgeous plant, and one that I had to make my Featured Ingredient of the Week!

My Cooking Attempt

This week’s ingredients photo is fairly unique, as there are zero spices or seasonings (besides garlic?) for this week’s Cooking Eorzea dish:

Cooking Eorzea | Lentils and Chestnuts Ingredients Photo.
Photo by author.

First, I minced the leeks and the carrots. I cut off the ends of both the leeks and the carrots, chopped them up lengthwise, and then chopped them with my cleaver.

Cooking Eorzea | Minced leeks.
Photos by author.

Cooking Eorzea | Minced Carrots.

Keeping with last week’s Cooking Eorzea column, I did not use pre-minced garlic. Instead, I crushed a bulb with my hand and broke away the skin off of the cloves by shaking them really hard inside of a plastic container.

Cooking Eorzea | Crushing a garlic bulb.
Photos by author.

Cooking Eorzea | Shaking garlic cloves.

I shaved the resulting garlic cloves down into thin slices, and then I minced them by hand. It was very easy, and I was more than a little satisfied with how simple it was to do.

Cooking Eorzea | Minced garlic.
Photo by author.

I then turned my attention to this week’s featured ingredient, the fennel bulb. I first cut off the top fronds, pulled off the outside layer, split the bulb in half after trimming off the ends, and then I used a paring knife to extract the root core out. The fennel smelled so fresh and so unique, and I was surprised at how simply fragrant it was.

Cooking Eorzea | Slicing fronds off of fennel.
Photos by author.

Cooking Eorzea | Coring a fennel bulb.

I then minced the remaining fennel.

Cooking Eorzea | Minced fennel.
Photo by author.

Finally, I minced a celery stalk.

Cooking Eorzea | Minced celery stalk.
Photo by author.

Here are what all the vegetables looked like together.

Cooking Eorzea | Minced vegetables.
Photo by author.

I poured a couple tablespoons of olive oil into a pot, and I let the oil warm up first. Once the pot was ready, I added the vegetables in and let them simmer together for 20 minutes to help soften them up while stirring occasionally.

Cooking Eorzea | Adding oil.
Photos by author.

Cooking Eorzea | Mixing vegetables.

Once the vegetables were prepped, I added in the red lentils, stirred them into the vegetables, and let it cook for another couple of minutes.

Cooking Eorzea | Adding in lentils.
Photos by author.

Cooking Eorzea | Blended lentils

Once the lentils were also softened up, I added in the bay leaf and the vegetable stock.

Cooking Eorzea | Adding a bay leaf and vegetable stock.
Photo by author.

I mixed the stock and bay leaf in, and then brought the entire pot to a boil before I then lowered the stove top temperature to a simmer for 20 more minutes.

Cooking Eorzea | Boiling the soup.
Photo by author.

While the Lentil soup was cooking, I opened up the two bags of chestnuts and chopped them up. I discovered that I didn’t have enough that the recipe required, so I opened up a third bag (I had extra shipped to me in case I needed it) and chopped those up too.

Cooking Eorzea | Chopped Chestnuts.
Photos by author.

Cooking Eorzea | More chopped chestnuts.

I then added the chestnuts into the pot and let them all cook together for another 10 minutes to soften those chestnuts up as much as possible.

Cooking Eorzea | Adding in Chestnuts.
Photo by author.

After the chestnuts were done in the soup, I removed the bay leaf. It took a while and I had to hunt for it inside the pot before I could find it.

Cooking Eorzea | Removing the Bay Leaf.
Photo by author.

I then ladled the soup into the blender. It was really quite hot, and I was surprised that the blender could handle it.

Cooking Eorzea | Ladling soup into the blender.
Photo by author.

I finally blended the soup together until it was fully smooth.

Cooking Eorzea | Blending the soup.
Photo by author.

After ladling the blended soup out into a small bowl, I topped it with croutons.

Cooking Eorzea | Adding croutons.
Photo by author.

And here is what this week’s Cooking Eorzea dish, Lentils and Chestnuts, final dish looks like!

Cooking Eorzea | Final Lentils and Chestnuts Soup.
Photo by author.

After this photo was taken, I immediately sat down and dove into the soup. I…wasn’t thrilled to eat it, to be honest. It was warm and very creamy (which makes sense as it was blended in a blender), but that is about all that I have to say about it. I didn’t taste the chestnuts or any particular vegetable. And as I pointed out earlier in this column – there was no other seasoning added to the dish, and so it was fairly pleasant and somewhat bland in taste. It wasn’t bad, per se. It just wasn’t memorable either. The croutons did pair well with the soup, however.


If you can’t tell, I was a bit disappointed by this week’s Cooking Eorzea dish. I would maybe make this dish again if I was cooking for someone who can’t handle spice whatsoever (like one of my dear friends who actually cannot do so). The Lentils and Chestnuts recipe was very easy to make, and I had no issue cooking it this week.

Let’s talk ‘thank yous’! First off, Victoria Rosenthal is someone I am absolutely indebted to, because she wrote The Ultimate FINAL FANTASY XIV Online Cookbook that I have been cooking from. I also need to thank Insight Editions for giving me permission to use the photos from their book to show how these recipes are actually supposed to look. Additionally, I owe Brandon Rose a special thanks for creating the logo for this series. You should check him and his works out over on Twitter.

Finally, I want to thank both Hiromichi Tanaka and Naoki Yoshida for producing FINAL FANTASY XIV Online in both iterations of the game. I am currently tackling the Eureka content, and the care and love that goes into crafting even this content is evident with every FATE that I clear in Pyros.

Next Week

Next week’s Cooking Eorzea dish is Miso Soup with Tofu, which comes from a Kogane Dori food stall in Kugane. I have never made miso soup before, but I have always liked it! So, I am pretty excited to see how this dish turns out. Please return next week to see how that dish turns out!

Let us know in the comments below!

Quentin H.
I have been a journalist for oprainfall since 2015, and I have loved every moment of it.