“Ah, it’s been a while, Marquis Drake.
I hope you’re well?”
Even if they were from different nations, nobles who held power often had connections with each other.
Count Shobek of the Western Empire and the Marquis Drake of England greeted each other amicably.
“I’ve been doing well.
You look as fine as ever, Count.”
After scanning the table, Marquis Drake spoke in a low voice, “What about Crown Prince Rael, is he not here yet?”
“It seems like he will arrive just before the banquet starts.”
“Do you know what kind of person the new Crown Prince of the East Empire is?”
“Are you talking about Crown Prince Rael?”
Count Shobek, a nobleman from the Western Empire, which had hostile relations with the Eastern Empire, sniggered quietly and whispered as if he were sharing a secret.
“Well, who knows? There are many rumors about the Crown Prince of Blood, but what’s so special about him? Compared to our Emperor Johannes III, he’s just an inexperienced child.”
Emperor Johannes III of the Western Empire was also around the same age as Crown Prince Rael.
Given that both had ascended to the throne at a young age, people often drew comparisons between them.
“I heard that all the meat for tonight’s banquet was not properly managed and had gone bad.
I wonder what kind of dish they will serve,” Count Shobek said with a mocking tone.
“Even if the Eastern Empire is barbaric, they wouldn’t serve us rotten meat, would they?”
As he was speaking maliciously of others behind their backs, Crown Prince Rael and other officials, including Prime Minister Oren, arrived and the banquet began.
“Thank you for coming all this way.
We didn’t prepare anything special, but I hope you enjoy the meal that we prepared with all our hearts.”
Count Shobek of the Western Empire snorted at Crown Prince Rael’s speech.
‘It’s obvious that it’s the food of those Eastern country bumpkins.’
He picked up his fork, intending to roar with laughter if there was even a slight problem with the food.
But soon, he frowned.
The quality of the food was better than he’d expected.
‘Well, the hors d’oeuvres are not bad.
The Easterners have some skill.’
As expected of a banquet, an endless variety of dishes were served as courses, each one difficult to find fault with.
Count Shobek looked dissatisfied and thought to himself, ‘But the highlight of the banquet is the grosses pièces.
Let’s see what kind of dish they bring out.’
He’d already heard the news that all the meat that had been prepared for the main course had gone bad.
In such a situation, there’s no way that the empire could serve proper dishes.
Then came the turn of the grosse pièce, the highlight of the banquet.
Apart from Count Shobek, a lot of delegates had also heard that there was a problem with the main course, and so everyone anticipated with interest what kind of dish would come out.
“What’s that?” When the main course was served on their plates, everyone’s eyes widened in surprise.
It was a kind of dish they’d never seen before.
“Your Highness, what is this?” someone asked the Crown Prince of the Eastern Empire.
The Crown Prince calmly sliced the meat with a knife and said, “This is a specially prepared steak that we’ve put a lot of effort into.”
“It should be good, so please taste it.” Everyone hesitantly placed their forks on the meat.
Meanwhile, Count Shobek, who had a hostile relationship with the Eastern Empire, smirked inwardly as he took a bite of the steak.
‘Isn’t this minced meat? Serving minced meat as the main course of a banquet! How ridiculous! Those Eastern country bumpkins, I tell you,” Count Shobek thought to himself as he chewed the meat.
“…….?!” He opened his eyes wide and shut his mouth.
And it wasn’t just him.
Everyone at the banquet had an expression of disbelief.
“This is……? How can it taste like this?”
The taste was unexpectedly delicious, with a tender texture and a perfect balance of sweetness and savory flavors.
It was a refreshing change from the usual steak that they were accustomed to, its novelty captivating their taste buds.
Someone exclaimed in admiration, “I’ve never seen this style of cooking before.
“It’s completely different from a regular steak.
Even though they used minced meat, the quality of the taste was not compromised.
The tender texture is also delightful.”
“This is truly a new delicacy.”
Delegates from various nations couldn’t stop praising the dish for its unique flavor.
Even the skeptical Count Shobek couldn’t deny the dish’s exceptional taste.
Someone asked the Crown Prince, “Your Highness, what is the name of this delicacy?”
The Crown Prince answered bluntly through his iron mask, “Salisbury Steak, or sometimes called Hamburg Steak.”
“Hamburg Steak…” Everyone murmured the name.
It was that moment when the name “Hamburg Steak” spread throughout the continent, even becoming a grosse pièce.
The banquet ended with great success.
The delegates returned to their respective nations to spread the recipe, and eventually, the Hamburg Steak spread throughout Europe.
However, that is a story for another day.
The Crown Prince, who managed to transform a potential disaster of a banquet into a great success, thought of the maid, Marie, the principal savior of the event.
‘I need to think about what reward to give her.’
If it weren’t for her, they would’ve been the subject of ridicule from the representatives of other nations.
The Crown Prince pondered Marie’s reward.
‘It’s my first time rewarding a maid, so I don’t know what kind of reward would be appropriate.’
The image of her doing menial chores came to mind.
‘She seemed too small and frail to handle strenuous work.’
Then he thought, ‘Should I move her to the Lion Palace?’
The Lion Palace!
It’s the place where the Crown Prince resided, where all the maids aspired to work at.
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