As the night fell, the two crescent moons called out to each other in the night sky and radiated moonlight like a veil across the sky.
The imperial city of the Light Wind Empire— one of the most busy cities in the Hidden Dragon Continent—was still awake in the middle of the night. The streets were lively with people and bright lights could be seen throughout the city.
The Ouyang manor was situated between the two main roads of the imperial city. It was one of the two manors located right outside of the imperial palace. The other was the Xiao manor.
Within the main hall of the Ouyang manor, the three barbarians of Ouyang were toplessly kneeling on the ground with their heads lowered. They did not dare to lift their heads to look at the elderly man sitting above.
Below the elderly man, there was a hairy middle-aged man helplessly standing there.
"Are you an idiot! You bastard, look at those three sons of yours! Running naked in public within the imperial city? Why did I even bother to raise an unfilial son like you? You're disgracing me even when you're this old! I've completely lost all of my face thanks to the lot of you!"
The elderly Ouyang was very furious and his voice could be heard throughout the Ouyang manor. He pointed at Ouyang Zongheng while scolding him and his saliva was spraying all over his son. His finger was even poking Ouyang Zongheng's forehead, causing him to stumble with each poke.
Ouyang Zongheng, a general of the Light Wind Empire, could only hold back his anger while being scolded by his father. He dared to get angry but did not dare to show it. He could only vent out his frustrations on his disappointing sons.
"Are the three of you stupid? I told you to fetch Xiaoyi, not run naked in public! You've really made me lose face! When you're outside, don't say that you're from Ouyang family!" Ouyang Zongheng shouted.
Running naked in public was an incident that had made them lose a lot of face. A few days ago, he was still laughing at that wily Minister of the Left because his son ran naked in public. And now, his sons did it as well and even went as a group. He had completely lost face in front of the other court officials.
The three barbarians of Ouyang did not dare to say anything. With their father and grandfather still angry, anything they said would be wrong.
Just when the tension within the main hall had reached its climax, a small head peeked in through the entrance and looked in. It was Ouyang Xiaoyi.
"Grandpa, dad… Xiaoyi has returned!" Ouyang Xiaoyi leaped out from behind the door with a smile on her face.
When the elderly Ouyang saw Ouyang Xiaoyi, his expression immediately became gentle and kind. He walked towards her and said, "Oh my, my little precious girl. You've really frightened your grandpa. I even thought you were kidnapped by a bad person. Come, let your grandpa see if you're hurt anywhere. Oh my, look at you, you've become skinnier..."
The elderly Ouyang lovingly patted Ouyang Xiaoyi's head with affection in his eyes.
Ouyang Zongheng was full of smiles as well. "My obedient daughter, don't run away from home anymore. Right now, it's not safe within the imperial city. Let's wait until this period is over, and father will run away from home together with you."
The three barbarians of Ouyang expressionlessly watched this scene unfold. At the same time, they felt this world was filled with corruption. Why was it that even though they were siblings, the difference between their treatment was this large?
Ouyang Zongheng felt their gaze and immediately put on a straight face. He snorted and said, "What are you looking at? Hurry up and go train. If you don't reach fifth grade Battle-King by this year, you're really going to get it."
The three barbarians of Ouyang dejectedly ran away as fast as they could. As they were even leaving, they were even making eyes towards their little sister.
The elderly Ouyang put on a straight face, then slapped the Ouyang Zongheng, who was putting on airs, on his head and said, "What are you looking at? Hurry up and go train. If you don't reach sixth grade Battle-Emperor by this year, you're really going to get it."
When Ouyang Xiaoyi saw this scene, she immediately laughed out loud. Then she grabbed onto the elderly Ouyang's beard and continued to giggle.
Within the kitchen, Bu Fang was calmly retrieving a bag of flour from a cabinet. The flour was prepared by the system and was of the highest quality.
He was preparing the other reward, the Golden Shumai.
The shumai was not foreign to Bu Fang. It was a type of snack that had fillings wrapped in dough and cooked in a bamboo steamer. It could be eaten for breakfast, was shaped like a pomegranate, and was tasty. It had both the good points of xiaolongbao and gyoza.
The skin of the shumai did not need to go through fermentation, so Bu Fang placed the kneaded dough on one side. According to the recipe provided by the system, there was some difference in the cooking method of this Golden Shumai compared to the traditional shumai. The ordinary Golden Shumai would have some pumpkin powder added within the flour, which resulted in the golden color of the shumai.
However, Bu Fang did not agree with this method. The reason was that adding the pumpkin powder would cause the flour to lose its texture and did not improve the taste of the dish.
That was why he took the egg yolk of a few third grade Thunderstorm Pigeons and added them into the flour mixture. By doing so, the skin of the shumai would have the fragrance of the Thunderstorm Pigeon's egg and the golden color.
The next step was the filling of the shumai. There was actually no standard ingredient for the shumai, and the recipe which the system provided was for meat fillings.
"The meat chosen is the tenderloin of the Flame Pig from the Wildlands. The meat is filled with rich spirit energy, and is fat but not greasy. It is an excellent meat ingredient," The system solemnly introduced.
Bu Fang nodded and took out the tenderloin of the Flame Pig from the freezer. The surface of the meat was actually covered by a thin layer of fire; distinct marbling could be seen on it.
After using the kitchen knife to tenderize the pork, Bu Fang began to cut it. His cutting speed was very fast and every cut he made was as if it was carefully calculated. Each piece of pork ended up as thin as the wings of a cicada.
He did not chose to dice the entire piece of pork; one half of it was diced and the other half was sliced. Then he mixed the diced meat with diced vegetables that were rich in spirit energy, and used the pork slices—that were as thick as the wings of cicada—to wrap them.
Once it was wrapped by the skin of the shumai with an opening left at the top, a small and exquisite shumai was made.
Bu Fang's speed was extremely fast: he only needed around twenty seconds to wrap a shumai. With nine shumais per bamboo steamer, Bu Fang quickly completed them and placed them into the bamboo steamer.
The bamboo steamer was provided by the system as well; it was made using bamboo that was slightly purple.
While waiting for the shumai to be done, Bu Fang received his other reward: the winemaking technique.
Wine was actually another type of gourmet food. With good wine, the aroma itself was capable of intoxicating people.
Bu Fang had always wanted to provide wine within the store. However, the system had never made any mentions about it. He did not expect that he would suddenly receive the winemaking technique as a reward.
"Winemaking technique: the Ice Heart Jade Urn Wine is produced using the Nine Brewing Method. The brewer's yeast is made in December and thawed in January. Then 15 Kg of the yeast, fifty liters of spirit spring water, and the high quality Dragon Blood Kaoliang—from the northern part of the Light Wind Empire—is used. Distill it once every three days, and once it has been distilled a total of three times, the wine is ready."
"This winemaking technique… It sounds really impressive." Bu Fang did not really understand, but was still impressed by the sound of it. But with such a complicated process, how long would it take to finally finish this?
"The system has provided the enhanced version of the Nine Brewing Method, which quickens the fermentation time and wine production speed. With a cycle per day, only three days are required to produce the wine."
Bu Fang went into a daze, then nodded. If it only required three days to produce the wine, then he could still look forward to it. He was getting slightly restless just thinking about it.
However, while he was daydreaming about the Ice Heart Jade Urn Wine, the Golden Shumai was successfully completed.
Bringing his attention back, Bu Fang carefully carried out the purple bamboo steamer and slowly lifted up the lid.
The hazy steam rushed out and filled the air with a refreshing sweet smell. Within that steam, a golden ray of light pierced through. Then right in front of Bu Fang's eyes, this ray of light gradually bloomed and instantly filled his eyes.
It was in a bright and dazzling gold!