Aside from Metroid, one of my biggest passions in life is food. I enjoy eating and cooking, and I’m a versatile home cook who makes almost anything – pasta, pizza, grilled meat, salads, tiramisu, cheesecake and all the gastronomic pleasures you could think of. With that in mind, I gained the idea for a Metroid-themed menu of recipes. I have developed seven recipes based on fan favorite enemies and elements of Metroid, which can be made year round. Vegetarian and vegan options are included where possible, and people of all ages can enjoy these dishes. Here’s how to cook like a bounty hunter.
My first recipe was inspired by a post on the Nintendo Switch’s News app ahead of the release of Metroid Dread (archived on Wikitroid here). It offered tips on preparing for your experience playing the game for the first time, with one of them being to make “themed bites”, like “Samus arancini”:
Treat yourself: Bounty Hunters get hungry, too! Why not flex your creativity with some themed bites? Perhaps a plate of Samus arancini, or-well, really, any pun-based cuisine is a win in our book.
Upon seeing this, I was inspired to try and figure out how I could make Samus Arancini a reality. For the uninitiated, arancini are Italian rice balls, which are filled with meat (commonly ragu), cheese and other ingredients like peas, mushrooms or eggplant/aubergine, then battered and deep fried until brown and crisp on the outside. They’re an excellent way to use leftover risotto rice, which firms up as it cools and isn’t so good reheated on its own. Immediately, I had the idea for a full on appetizer: three arancini laid out to look like Metroid nuclei, on a bed of vibrant green creamed spinach made to resemble a Metroid’s membrane. Finally, two pieces of toasted bread cut into the shape of their mandibles, which are perfect for scooping up the spinach after.
The first step to making these arancini is to make a batch of risotto. My favorite to use for this is Laura Vitale’s White Risotto, which is easy, doesn’t require a lot of ingredients and has a basic flavor profile you can work with. You don’t want to use a risotto with any strong flavorings like truffle oil, saffron or seafood as they’ll clash with the rest of the dish. Laura’s risotto uses chicken stock, but if you’re vegan, vegetable stock would work fine, and you can use vegan parmesan and Earth Balance or a different vegan butter.
The other important step: the risotto has to be very cold. You can’t make a batch of risotto and immediately turn it into arancini. As I said, when it’s cold, the texture is firmer and you can form it into things, so the arancini will hold their shape when they’re fried. Make your risotto the day before you’re going to do this.
The creamed spinach is very simple. You can either cook 2 ½ cups of spinach or use a 500g bag of frozen spinach that you thaw, making sure you squeeze out all the water. Make a simple bechamel sauce and stir your spinach into it. You can add some more milk if the sauce is too thick. When I was making this recipe, I first tested it with pesto, which wasn’t as nice as I’d hoped it would be.
The arancini recipe is also based on Laura’s, but I’ve tweaked it. Instead of using beef and tomato sauce, I’m using ground chicken and omitting the tomatoes. When the arancini are formed and fried, spread the spinach on each serving plate in the shape of a membrane. If it’s cold, reheat it on the stove with a bit of extra milk so it’s not too thick. Grill two oiled pieces of good bread cut into the shape of Metroid teeth until you have nice grill marks, then place them under the membrane. Place the arancini in the shape of Metroid nuclei on top of the creamed spinach, and dig in.
- 1 small yellow onion, minced
- ¼ cup diced celery
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 cup arborio rice
- ¾ cup white wine
- 41/2 cups chicken or vegetable stock
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- ½ cup freshly grated good Parmesan (you can add more – I always do)
- 3 tbsp unsalted butter
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 small onion, finely minced
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 4oz ground chicken
- 1/4 cup frozen peas
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 2 oz mozzarella, cut into small pieces (dry, not wet)
- 4 eggs
- 1 ½ cups flour
- 2 cups seasoned breadcrumbs
- Vegetable oil for deep frying
- 1 batch of cold risotto (see above)
- 2 egg yolks
- 1 500g bag of frozen spinach, or 2 ½ pounds fresh
- 1 shallot, minced
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced
- ½ cup heavy cream or whole milk, warmed up or at room temperature, plus more if needed
- ½ cup good Parmesan cheese (more to taste)
- Salt and pepper
- Pinch of nutmeg
- Pinch of chili flakes
- Sliced sourdough bread, cut diagonally in half and then into rough talon shapes (doesn’t need to be perfect)
- Make your risotto ahead of time. Have one pot you can stir the risotto in ready, and pour the stock into a separate pot next to it. Bring the stock up to a simmer and keep it there the entire time.
- Saute the onion, garlic and celery in the olive oil until they soften and turn translucent. Pour in the rice and stir it to coat in the oil for about a minute. Pour in the wine and let it evaporate. If you don’t want to use wine, put in extra stock, same amount.
- Once it has, start to add in a bit of chicken stock at a time, ladle by ladle. Let the rice absorb the stock, stirring occasionally. Once it absorbs the stock you’ve added, add more. Keep doing this for about 18-20 minutes until the rice increases in size and starts to become soft.
- Taste your rice at this point to see if it’s nearly cooked. It should still have some chew to it, but not be mushy. When the rice is nearly done, add one more ladle of stock, salt and pepper to your taste, the butter and cheese, and put a lid over the pot. Let it sit for 5 minutes. After that, stir it.
- Pour the risotto into a container or dish to cool completely, and then put it in the fridge. To make the arancini, the risotto needs to be very cold, so do this the day before or at least a few hours before you’re going to make them.
- To make the arancini, start with the filling. Put oil into another pan and cook the ground chicken until it’s almost fully cooked. Season it to taste. Add the onions and garlic and cook it for 5 more minutes until they get soft. Add the peas and cook for 5 more minutes to heat them up. Set it aside to cool.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Mix the cold risotto with the egg yolks, and put your flour, eggs and breadcrumbs into separate bowls.
- Use a large ice cream scoop to form balls with the rice. Make an indent in the center and add a small spoonful of the filling, and a small piece of mozzarella. Close the ball over the filling. If it’s sticky, have a bowl with some water to the side so you can wet your hands. You should end up with 10 arancini. Put them onto the baking sheet and put them in the fridge for 10-30 minutes.
- When the arancini have chilled, gently roll them in the flour, then the eggs and the breadcrumbs to coat them. Put them back on the baking sheet and refrigerate them for 30 minutes to an hour. This will dry out the coating so they’ll be even more crispy, and make sure they keep their shape.
- Fill up a large pot or Dutch oven with 3 inches of oil and heat it up to 375° Fahrenheit (190 Celsius). If you don’t have a thermometer, put a small breadcrumb into the oil and if it rises up and starts to fry, the oil is hot enough.
- Carefully fry the arancini, 3-4 at a time, in the oil until they are brown and crispy on the outside. Don’t add more than 4 at once or the oil temperature will drop, and the arancini might fall apart. Once they’re cooked, add them to a baking sheet lined with paper towels to drain extra oil. You can keep them warm in a 200° oven while you work, or make them ahead and reheat them in the oven at 350° for 10-20 minutes.
- Once that’s done, cut your bread slice into rough talon shapes (use the image as a reference). It doesn’t need to be perfect, the more mangled it is, the cooler it looks. Brush one side of them with olive oil and grill them on a grill pan until they get char marks. Optionally, you can cut a clove of garlic and rub the cut side on the charred bread after you’re done.
- Now for the creamed spinach. In another pan, fry the shallots and garlic in oil until they soften and get translucent. If you’re using fresh spinach, add that in after with seasoning and cook it until the spinach wilts. Take it out and let it cool so you can squeeze out any liquid. If you’re using frozen spinach, squeeze out the liquid and leave it aside for now.
- Add the butter to the pan and melt it, then add the flour and whisk it in with the butter. Once the flour incorporates the butter, pour in the cream and whisk it to remove lumps. Let the sauce thicken and turn the heat down. Add your seasonings, cheese and spinach and stir to mix. If it’s too thick, add a bit more milk.
- To assemble the dish, form some of the spinach on a plate in the shape of a Metroid’s membrane. Place three arancini on each plate (the nuclei), and place the bread underneath the membrane. Serve immediately.
This recipe is not strictly Metroid related, but I wanted to include it anyway. I was inspired by the many gifs and images Retro Studios would tweet showing Texas barbecue, in particular prime rib. That always set the rumor mill ablaze with speculation of Metroid Prime 4 being in production there, which eventually came true. Lots and lots of perfectly charred, smoked meats were posted to tempt and tease us all. I wanted to pay tribute to this in the best way I could. While this dish is called “Prime Rib”, it’s not actually prime rib in the same way a grilled cheese (cheese toastie for the British) is not actually grilled. I considered making it with prime rib, and decided not to since it’s not always available year round, is more difficult to cook, and makes a lot. We’re using brisket instead, let’s call it a boneless prime rib specifically from the Metroid Prime itself. It’s a valued black market delicacy, but don’t let Dark Samus catch you eating some.
- 2 tbsp each chili powder and salt
- 1 tbsp each garlic powder, onion powder, ground black pepper and sugar
- 2 tsp ground mustard
- 1 bay leaf, torn up into small pieces
- 4lb beef brisket, trimmed of excess fat
- 1 ½ cups beef stock
- Barbecue sauce
- Mix your dry rub with the spices and season the brisket all over with it. You likely won’t need to use all of the rub on your prime rib, but keep what’s left and use it on other grilled meats, it’s fabulous.
- Put it in a roasting pan and roast it in a 350 degree F oven for 1 hour, uncovered.
- After 1 hour, add the beef stock and enough water to make ½ inch of liquid in the pan. Reduce the oven temp to 350 and cover the pan tightly with aluminum foil. Cook it for 3 more hours or until it’s tender enough you can pierce it with a fork.
- Let it rest for a couple of minutes, and then slice it against the grain. Trim off any large pieces of fat. Serve it with juice from the pan (if any – mine didn’t have as much) and your favorite barbecue sauce.
Ku wanted to show you some of her favorite sides with Prime Rib – creamy mashed potato and coleslaw! She’s happy as long as it’s not chicken (which to her is cannibalism).
Hadar Sen Oatmeal Cookies
Gotta love a good food pun, right? These cookies were served by Raven Beak to the Mawkin before they went to war, as a hearty and filling snack. In conquering human colonies, he discovered the ingredients needed to make cookies and put the Mawkin to work building wheat and dairy farms. That’s what I choose to believe anyway. For prisoners, he would make them with fewer ingredients, so they were dry, crumbly and unpleasant.
Initially, I tried to make these as big pancakes with mashed banana and maple syrup in them. While they tasted good, they were impractical and took too long to cook through, by which point they were black. I switched to cookies, at first using only one egg, which resulted in dry cookies like the ones served to Mawkin prisoners. I then tested them with two eggs, and they were perfect. Cookies proved to be the winning option, and you’ll agree when you make them yourself.
- 2 sticks of softened butter
- ¾ cup brown sugar, packed (light or dark)
- 2 eggs
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- ¾ tsp salt
- ½ tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 tsp ground ginger
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
- 1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
- Cinnamon sugar or Nutella, peanut butter or jam
- Beat the butter and brown sugar in a mixing bowl, then add the eggs, vanilla, salt, baking powder, cinnamon, and ginger and beat them in. Add the flours and oats and keep beating until it comes together as a dough.
- Cut the dough into two pieces and wrap each of them with plastic wrap. Let them rest on the counter for half an hour.
- Preheat your oven to 350°F and line two baking sheets with parchment.
- Unwrap your dough, then roll each piece out on a floured surface (also, flour your rolling pin). Using a small knife, cut out the shape of the Mawkin symbol (use this picture for reference). You can re-roll the dough scraps at least twice to get more cookies out of it.
- Place your Mawkin cookies on your baking sheets (they can be close together) and use the knife to score the details into them. Don’t cut all the way through the dough. Don’t worry if it’s not perfect, it’ll look rustic. Also, Raven Beak is dead so he won’t choke you out.
- Bake the cookies between 10 to 20 minutes. Cook them less if you want softer cookies, and longer if you want sturdier. Once they’re done, take them out and let them cool on a wire rack.
- You can dust them with cinnamon sugar, or let them cool completely and make cookie sandwiches using Nutella, peanut butter or your favorite jam.
When I first started thinking of Metroid recipes, I immediately knew I wanted to make pasta of some sort. I wondered what kind of sauce a Metroid-themed pasta might have, and Phazon came to mind. Sure, it’s sometimes a growth, but it’s also a refined liquid in other cases – most notably Metroid Prime 3, where you can take a bath in it and actually replenish energy rather than lose it. With this in mind, I thought, what if one was to make Phazon-dyed pasta that’s blue? Some pasta is dyed different colors with vegetables, like spinach for green or beets for pink. What if blue-colored pasta was tossed in a silky, but sharp and simple sauce? That’s how Phazon Alfredo was born.
I first tested this with spaghetti, and only dyed it for 20 minutes. It didn’t turn as blue as I wanted, and when I tossed it in a cream sauce, it turned a gross looking grey color. Our team member Leon had the idea to use tagliatelle, which worked much better, and I omitted the cream.
Tagliatelle pasta is cooked and steeped in water that’s been turned blue by boiling red cabbage in it, creating a natural dye without using food coloring. The pasta doesn’t taste like cabbage, but it turns a nice blue color and when tossed with a blue cheese butter, takes on a potent and satisfying flavor.
- ½ head red cabbage, roughly chopped
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 bag of tagliatelle
- 3 small or 2 large cloves of garlic, minced or grated
- ¼ cup butter, room temperature
- ¼ cup blue cheese
- 1 tbsp chopped chives
- Salt and pepper
- Walnuts (optional)
- 1 tbsp each sugar, water and apple cider vinegar (optional)
- Pinch of chili flakes (optional)
- Mix the butter, blue cheese, garlic and chives together and roll it up into a log with plastic wrap. Chill it in the fridge for a few hours. You can do this ahead. Let it come up to room temperature before you start the rest of this recipe.
- Put the cabbage in a pot and pour in enough water to cover it. Bring it up to a boil and cook it until the water turns a deep purple color. Once it has, put a colander over a bowl and strain the cabbage. Let the cabbage dry and cool on a paper towel-lined baking sheet. It should be purple in color and still have a bit of crunch. Don’t throw it away!
- Add the baking soda to the purple water and watch it turn blue instantly. Set it aside to cool.
- Cook your tagliatelle in heavily salted water (I like to add a clove of garlic to the water too – this is optional) a minute shy of what the package says. Drain it and then put it into a bowl, and pour as much blue water as you need to cover it. Let it steep in there for at least 30 minutes or up to 2 hours. After that, your pasta should be blue in color. Dry it off on another paper towel.
- Add your compound butter to a saucepan over medium low heat to let it melt. Toss the pasta in the melted butter until it soaks it up.
- If using walnuts: toast them in a dry pan over a low heat until you can smell them. Add the sugar, water and apple cider vinegar in equal amounts, along with a sprinkling of chili flakes. Once the walnuts are candied, take them off the heat and serve them atop the pasta.
- I told you not to throw away the cabbage. Here’s what to do with it: chop it down finely, mix it with 1 1/2 cups of mayo, 2 tbsp of Dijon mustard, 1 tbsp of white wine vinegar, 2 peeled and shredded carrots, a thinly sliced red onion and plenty of salt. Serve it alongside the Prime Rib.
X Parasite Jellies
Samus isn’t the only being in the universe who can safely consume X Parasites anymore. Have you ever wanted to try one? Now you can, in its three standard flavors! The recipe is super easy, the only thing you have to wait for is the jelly to set in the fridge. You can easily make these ahead of time and get them ready right before you need them. The recipe makes a small batch of each, but can be doubled to make more. I recommend making multiple flavors at once and serving them at a party on an attractive platter. Your guests will thank you.
- 1 envelope unflavored gelatin, each ¼ oz
- ½ and ¼ cup cold water
- 2 tbsp sugar
- 1 cup cranberry juice
- 1 cup pineapple juice
- 1 cup brewed and cooled green tea, dyed with green food coloring
- Red and yellow food coloring (optional)
- In a large bowl, sprinkle your gelatin over ¼ cup of cold water and let it sit there for 5 minutes. Meanwhile, bring the ½ cup of water and sugar to a boil in a small saucepan. Swirl the pan (do not stir) to dissolve the sugar. Once it boils, pour it over the gelatin mixture and whisk it until it is dissolved.
- Whisk in your juice of choice and pour the mixture into an 8 inch baking dish. You can increase the color by stirring in some food coloring if you want – I recommend it for the pineapple jelly, and the green tea jelly.
- Leave it to set in the fridge for at least 3 hours or overnight, until it’s jiggly. Run a dinner knife around the edges to loosen it and invert it onto a flat surface. Cut out small X Parasite shapes (they don’t have to be perfect) and gently scrape away any excess jelly (eat it as a cook’s treat!). Gently lift them onto a serving plate.
- Repeat the steps above for each flavor.
Flat Egg Omelette
Legend has it that this is what Flat Egg ate every morning for breakfast with a cup of Comet Grog. Unfortunately, he hasn’t been able to enjoy it while under the servitude of Raven Beak, who insisted he be fed a diet of space gruel. Honor Flat Egg’s sacrifice to Samus by making his favorite meal. May he live on in flat peace forever.
I suppose I should explain, for those unaware, that Flat Egg is Darren and Glaedrax’s name for Quiet Robe from Metroid Dread. He came up with the name because of the benevolent Chozo’s supposedly flat head. It’s actually pointy, but don’t tell Glaedrax that – he’ll say it’s fake news. I had to seek his input for this recipe; he suggested the cheese and potatoes.
I started this recipe by simply boiling the potatoes, but actually, searing them and cooking them in stock is so much more flavorsome. Do it that way, and you’ll benefit with an even better omelette.
- 2 small potatoes, diced
- 2 tbsp butter
- ½ cup chicken stock
- 3 eggs
- ¼ cup half and half cream
- ½ cup shredded cheddar
- ½ cup fresh or frozen corn, thawed if frozen
- 3 tbsp chives, chopped, or scallion, minced
- Salt and pepper to your taste
- First cook your potatoes. Sear them in a pan with butter until lightly caramelized on each side, at least 8 minutes. Once seared, add the chicken stock and cover the pan with a lid until most of the stock has been absorbed by the potatoes, at least 20 minutes. Once cooked, pour them onto a plate and leave them to cool completely.
- Preheat your oven to 400°F. Whisk the eggs and cream together in a bowl and stir in the other ingredients.
- Pour it into a greased square metal baking dish and bake until golden and set, 15-20 minutes.
Note: This recipe is for a single serving. If you want to make it for more people, then double the ingredients and up the cooking time to 30-35 minutes. I say to use a metal dish because glass or ceramic takes longer to both heat up and cool down, and you don’t want your eggs to overcook.
Ridley’s Favorite Smoothie Bowl
My final recipe is a refreshing smoothie bowl. The Space Pirates invented this for their dear leader Ridley, using stolen ingredients from conquered human settlements. They made it purple in tribute to Ridley, with peanut butter (a popular smuggled good among Pirates) and a dash of spice to make it interesting. (No, I didn’t steal this idea from Stranger Things 4) I should warn you that Ridley’s version uses… ahem, flesh and cells of those who he kills, making it a sort of Space Dragon protein shake. Fortunately for you, I’ve prepared a version of the recipe where berries stand in for human bodies.
- ⅔ cup each frozen blueberries and strawberries
- ¼ cup milk (can be cow’s, almond, oat or whatever you like)
- ¼ tsp vanilla extract
- 1 scoop protein powder (if it’s vanilla protein powder, leave out the extract)
- ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
- 3 tbsp peanut butter
- Blend the first 5 ingredients and 1 tbsp of the peanut butter until smooth. It’s going to be thicker than a smoothie you drink, because it’s served in a bowl with a spoon.
- Microwave the other 2 tablespoons of peanut butter for 30 to 45 seconds to melt it. Drizzle it on top of the bowl in the shape of Ridley’s head (he is a narcissist after all). Don’t worry if it’s not perfect, Pirate stuff tends to be crudely designed anyway.
That’s the whole menu so far! I wanted to add more recipes, but as time goes on, I may think of more and develop them to share with you all in a second feature. If you make any of these dishes, let us know what you thought of them! You can post your photos on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram with #cooklikeabountyhunter. I’d love to see you try them out!
Written by RoyboyX
Special thanks to Anto, Darren and Leon