A few days ago, an interesting question was posed in the VG247 Slack. A very important question, actually. What do Pikmin taste like? With the same curious spark inside me that lead to adding a dog-nose to Oatchi previously, I had to find out exactly what Pikmin 4’s cast of peculiar little half-plant, half-animal creatures would taste like.
Spoiler alert; I did not eat any Pikmin. Sadly, I am aware that these busy little workers aren’t real, and if they were, I wouldn’t know which planet to try and find them on (and you probably wouldn’t be able to grow it in Britain, anyway). However, I do have some food connoisseurs for friends – some real serious gourmand types – and as a result, I have been able to enlist the expert opinion of two full-time chefs in my quest to determine what Pikmin would be like on the tongue. This, after all, is the information we’re all dying to know.
My close friend, Clarke, thinks that the red Pikmin “definitely tastes like a radish.” This sentiment was actually backed up by another old friend and chef, Sam, who agreed “the red one looks suspiciously like a radish.” I personally thought the red Pikmin resembles one of those Atomic Fireblast sweets – or a pomegranate seed, if you’re more health concious – but the chefs have spoken.
As for the other Pikmin, Clarke wasn’t so sure. “For the yellow one, I’m torn between saying Buddha’s finger, a lemon that’s got no fruit, or maybe a yellow chrysanthemum. I’m baffled by the blue one. I feel like he’s got the crispy snap of a vegetable, but natural blue food is weird.”
We then established that the purple Pikmin must taste like an aubergine (eggplant), but were left stumped for the blue Pikmin. Our other chef, Sam, shared that “The others, maybe a physalis, they look enticing but they are proper sour once you get into them.”
This is my first time ever hearing of a physalis, but that’s chefs for you. Always playing with things you’re pretty certain aren’t real. Per some research, physalis are distantly related to the tomato, potato, and aubergine family – so this particularly tangy fruit certainly seems fitting as a Pikmin flavour. It’d make sense that all the Pikmin food types would be related, after all.
So, what have we learned in this whistle-stop journey through the world of Nintendo-based haute cuisine? For starters (no pun intended), it seems as though Pikmin would make the perfect component in a salad, or feel right at home as a dessert topping. Would you eat a cake laden with yellow, physalis-flavoured Pikmin? Sprinkle some radish-flavoured red Pikmin into your salad? Or eye up the mysterious, unsettling blue one on the side of your plate with caution before taking a tentative bite? I know I would.
If I didn’t think Pikmin were so adorable, I’d argue that cooking Pikmin would make a great new addition to the activities across PNF-404. It’s probably not something that Nintendo would consider, though, is it? Doesn’t really fit in with its whole ‘family friendly’ reputation. Now, I do wonder what Oatchi would bring to the dinner-table…