The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion - “S’Jirra’s Famous Potato Bread” with a Nirnroot Salad Recipe
My only experience of RPGs until I played The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion were games like Final Fantasy which all my friends played and I seriously struggled to get involved with. Each time one came out I’d go “maybe this time!” and pick it up and after about 10 hours would start to go insane with the start-stop action and repetitive stories… So when I was encouraged to play Oblivion I was sceptical. Then I spent over 200 hours of my life on it and I haven’t been the same person since! “S’Jirras Famous Potato Bread” is a rare food item you are rewarded with, obviously by S’Jirra, at Faregyl Inn for completing ‘The Potato Snatcher’ quest.
But what would one eat with their potato bread while wandering the wilds of Cyrodiil? What possible vegetation could one gather?! Why that fauna so rare, the elusive and delicious Nirnroot of course! So instead of handing those precious Nirnroots over to Sinderion for an Elixir of Exploration, why not make a delightful salad?
What you will need:
Large baking tray, a pot, two large mixing bowls, a sieve and a little oil for greasing.
For the Potato Bread:
2 Tablespoons Butter
1 ½ Teaspoons Salt
2 Tablespoons Sugar
225g Mashed Potatoes (approx. 2 medium potatoes)
400g Strong Bread Flour
1 ½ Teaspoons Fast Action Yeast
For the Nirnroot Salad:
½ A Fennel Bulb
For the Dressing:
50 ml Olive Oil
4 Tablespoons Lemon Juice
Making the Potato Bread:
- Peel and boil approx. 2 medium potatoes that are suitable for mashing - I used Vivaldi baking potatoes. Once mashed, do not add anything to them!
- In a pot, gently heat the water, milk and butter until the butter melts.
- Pour the mixture into a large bowl and add the salt, sugar and mashed potato. Mix thoroughly until the sugar has dissolved.
- Sieve in half of the flour (200g) and mix well to form a kind of paste.
- Once the mixture is lukewarm sprinkle in the yeast and mix thoroughly again.
- Sieve the remaining 200g of flour in and mix until a ball of dough forms.
- Place the dough on a lightly floured surface and kneed for 10 minutes until it is soft, smooth and no longer sticky. This may take a while, and you will have to re-flour the surface several times but keep at it and it will come together.
- Grease a large bowl with a little oil, place the ball of dough inside top surface down, then turn it over so that both sides are lightly coated in oil.
- Cover the bowl with a damp tea-towel, put a plate on top and set in a warm place to rise for about 40-45 minutes.
- Once the dough has risen and doubled in size - grease a large baking tray.
- Remove the dough from the bowl and place on a floured surface. Punch back the dough to knock out any air.
- Form the dough into the desired shape, a kind of rustic bloomer, slice the top several times across to create the pattern and place on the prepared greased tray.
- Leave in a warm place again for 40-45 minutes.
- Once doubled in size - pre-heat the oven to 190C.
- Sprinkle a little flour over the dough and cook in the oven for 35-40 minutes until the loaf turns a golden brown and sounds hollow when tapped on the bottom.
Preparing the Dressing:
- Mix the olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper together and stir well.
Preparing the Salad:
- Wash and dry the Rocket, Baby Spinach, Watercress and Parsley.
- Wash the Fennel and trim the base, then slice it in to fine strips and add to the salad.
- Pour the dressing over the salad and mix well until all the leaves are coated.
- Finely grate some parmigiano-reggiano over the salad.
I was really worried about making bread, I had tried once before in the past and failed miserably, it ended up like a rock, but this bread came out perfectly. I made it all by hand too so there’s seriously no need for a mixer or bread-maker. As a potato bread it did have a slightly different texture to most breads, it was incredibly light and moist but slightly dense, almost cake like. It went fabulously with the Nirnroot salad and array of vegetables and cheeses I served up and was super tasty with jam too - my friends thought I’d lied and bought it from the bakery around the corner it was that good! I’d say this bread was a complete success, it even looked just like S’Jirra’s, only I didn’t have to chase down any Ogres for the ingredients.