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Wednesday Food Gets Undead

Ebolden is breathing into a brown paper bag two days before moving to the Left Coast.  I’m Vic Vulcan.  This is dinner.  After the apocalypse.


AZ 2, Day 29: Fresh Kill

Boone shot a deer this morning out on patrol. I took the hams and tenderloin. Figure we’re in for a real feast tonight. The wild turkeys we killed two days ago and attempted to smoke are getting pretty ripe. Need to figure out a better way to preserve meat. Those gas station packets of salt just won’t cut it…

Holly found a garden when we stopped to rest and scrounge for clean water today. That kid’s like James Garner from “The Great Escape”. Wild onions, new potatoes, garlic, fresh herbs. How she found ginger in North America I’ll never know…

My name is Vic. I was cook before all this started. Worked in a hospital too, so I guess that makes me the doc. I got conscripted with the rest of the nation once the governments realized how bad the problem really was. By then it was too late. Our unit, the 7th Smoky Mountain, was overrun. Happened AZ 1, Day 299. The dead took out an entire division. Twelve-thousand souls condemned to hell in the time it’d take you to eat a sandwich. Some of them earned a return ticket – probably shuffling around out there right now.

Boone found us a place to camp. One of those scenic overlooks off the parkway. It’s got natural defenses he says. One way in. One way out. Boone was in some kind of paramilitary outfit Before Zombies (BZ) took over. He’s good to have around and the camp he found us has a few off those iron grills and plenty of firewood to cook with. Guess I need to get started. Can’t have a fire after dark. The dead aren’t the only threat to our survival.


  • Grilled deer tenderloin with fresh herbs, roasted wild onion and potatoes
  • Sesame-crusted wild turkey with ginger soy dipping sauce
  • Mystery Canned Good
  • Moose Drool Brown Ale

Fresh food is a treat. I guess the living dead skeeve out wild game as much as they do those of us who survived. All the major cities burned in the first few months of the outbreak. Though some say Galveston still stands as do pockets in the Atchafalaya Delta, isolated outposts across Texas and the Plains. Me and Boone, Holly and the rest have tried to stay in the Appalachians. There’s fresh water, plenty to forage, high ground – hard terrain for undead legs – and occasionally game to be found.

I loot what I can when we come down from the hills. Packets of sauce, salt, pepper, oil, rice. I can only guess how many canned goods are left in the world. Not many I imagine. And it seems like the few remaining have the labels ripped off. What a cruel joke.

I season the tenderloin (backstrap) with the last of our olive oil, a couple cloves of garlic and a healthy amount of the fresh rosemary Holly found. I let this sit while I trim and pluck hairs from the turkey breast. I’ll treat this with a touch of oil and dredge the pieces in sesame seeds then sprinkle with salt and pepper. Sprinkle the deer with salt and pepper then toss both meats on the grill away from direct heat. Both are lean meats and will burn and dry out if you cook too hot and quick.

For the sauce I grate ginger, chop garlic and add four packets of “Orange Garden Buffet” soy sauce to a coffee cup. I throw a pinch of sugar in as well. Typically I’d add around ½ cup of red wine vinegar. Typically I wouldn’t spend 20 minutes a day scraping human gore from under my fingernails with the broad head of a hand axe.

I shake the dented mystery can. It sounds too thick to be fruit or corn. When I was in the 7th I knew guy who had quite a racket guessing the contents of mystery cans. I still don’t know how he did it, but after the first time I never bet against him. I think we got beans.

…Shaw was attacked. A group of four or five – hikers or backpackers by the looks of their gear. How do they survive? Where did they come from? We’ve all heard rumors. Secret government experiments. Space meteors. Spanish influenza. Anyone who did know is worm food or worse by now. We’ll have to keep an eye on Shaw. I wrapped his hand and doused it with a mixture of bleach and water. One bit of good news, infection isn’t guaranteed. Some people get bit and turn. Some people catch it in the air or water – don’t even need to get bit. Others seem completely immune. Boone has a piece missing from his calf the size of an artichoke. Got it swimming in a lake. One of the bastards was walking along the bottom.

Despite the zombies’ best efforts dinner was a success. And the beer? Yeah, Holly found that. I told you the kid could find anything. It’s a brown ale from Montana and pairs well with both the venison and wild turkey. It has a slightly malty taste with a sweet, almost nutty finish. And hey, it’s beer after the apocalypse, stop complaining.


June 22, 2011 - Posted by | Wednesday Food


  1. This is an interesting new direction for the column.

    Comment by Adam Kotsko | June 22, 2011

  2. I want to pitch this as a cooking competition show. Ebolden, interested?

    Comment by Josh K-sky | June 22, 2011

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