One Trek Mind #7: Food For Thought
Regardless of personal beliefs or customs, I think we can all agree that the holiday season is the best time to indulge yourself with food and drink. With luck, you are home from work, reconnecting with family, wearing an eyesore of a sweater, and hopefully taking a break to read StarTrek.com.
To those of us that are Star Trek fanatics, we don't just chow down on goose and fruitcake. Would that we had access to a replicator, these are the dishes with which a Trek fan would most likely make merry.
10 – Plomeek Soup
Plomeek soup is a staple of the Vulcan diet, and so ubiquitous that even other races in the Federation have acquired a taste for it. The most logical Vulcans are more concerned with nutrition than something so frivolous as flavor, so it should come as no surprise that Plomeek Soup is notable for being bland.
Those curious about the physical properties of the broth should refer to season two's "Amok Time." In it you can see the liquid meal hurled with great force, as when an angry Spock throws some at Chapel during the depths of his pon farr.
9 – Chadre'kab
One could hardly imagine a trip to Neelix's galley without this Talaxian delicacy. Chadre'kab is very versatile, and can be served a number of different ways. Steamed Chadre'kab is what Seven of Nine first ate while transitioning away from a full Borg physiognomy and later served roasted to Captain Janeway in The Void. Neelix's family recipe was so unique that the wandering freelance problem solvers in the Voyager episode “Think Tank” requested its secrets as part of their payment for interstellar aid.
8 – Yamok Sauce
A Cardassian cannot live by bread alone. Everything needs a little flavor.
Yamok sauce is a common condiment in Cardassian cuisine, although descriptions of what it tastes like to Terran taste buds are hard to come by. One can assume that it is something of an acquired taste to outsiders, considering how hard it is to rid oneself of, even if you have self-sealing stem bolts to trade!
7 – Rigelion-Chelon Soup
Those that are reading the fantastic Vanguard novels know that one of the coolest characters in the larger Trek universe is Starbase 47's giant tortoise-like diplomat, Ambassador Jetanein. In addition to thinking three steps ahead of everyone else, his Falstaffian demeanor keeps him in everyone's good graces, including when taking his repast. His meal of choice, a fetid, briny soup, is described as smelling like rotten garbage and rancid fish. And yet people still want to sit with him at dinner – what a guy!
6 – Yellow Cubes and Green Spheres in a Brown Sauce
We never got the name of this dish, but this is what Lieutenant junior grade Joe Tormolen was about to eat before he pulled a knife on Sulu and Reily in “The Naked Time.”
Coincidence that it was upon seeing this brightly colored mush that the Psi 2000 Polywater Toxin kicked in? I think not.
5 – Breadsticks
Before a meal, especially if you are hungry, it is good to nibble on something. Aboard the NX-01, Chef was sure to keep fresh breadsticks at the ready.
In the Enterprise pilot “Broken Bow,” this afforded Captain Archer and Trip Tucker a good opportunity to get some early insight into their new crewmate T'Pol, when she insisted on eating them with a knife and fork.
4 – Sarpeidon Animal Flesh
The author of TOS' “All Our Yesterdays” (a librarian called Jean Listte Aroeste, a name almost as awesome as Mr. Atoz) didn't get too specific about what precisely it was that Spock ate as he reverted to his more primal nature. But on the planet of Sarpeidon during its ancient ice age period, Spock shocks himself not only by eating animal flesh, but by ENJOYING it.
Sadly, the original Star Trek run was cancelled soon after this episode, so we never saw Leonard Nimoy advertising for Mr. Spock's Rib Shack N' Clam Hut, which, of course, would have been the natural progression.
3 – Pizza from the 1980s
Since Captain Kirk trusted marine biologist Gillian Taylor implicitly in The Voyage Home, he had his own large pizza with mushrooms, pepperoni and extra onions.
With a Michelob. I think Shatner could still handle it.
2 - Hasperat
You go to Philly, you get a cheesesteak. You go to Bajor, you get the hasperat. It's just that simple.
This spicy, portable meal had enough crossover appeal that it was a regular seller at Quark's. Orions were seen eating it. Our favorite insatiable Bajoran, Ro Laren, liked hers with extra fire. Even Neelix learned to cook it way out there in the Delta quadrant. Give me enough to drink and get me going on how Bajor is one giant metaphor for the Middle East and I'll tell you that hasperat is actually hummus....
1 - Gagh
Were you worried I'd forget about the mighty culinary arts of Qo'noS? May your body shrivel up and burn in the honorless pits of Gre'thor for even thinking such a thing.
The Klingon worm delicacy comes with some rules, of course. As well all know, gagh is better when served live. (The sensation of the writhing creatures making their way down your throat is half the fun.)
Riker manned up and ate some. Could you?
Let me know which of your Star Trek food favorites I left out. And if that gagh left a poor taste in your mouth, don't worry. We'll have something to wash it down in our next column... tomorrow.