Since its a new month, I present to you a new instalment of official oggam fluff background, this time about the division within the Og empire dedicated to keeping the troops happy, the imperial catering corps.
The Great and Glorious Empire of Og: The Imperial catering corps
To the Oggam soldiers who reside in the Og empire, none are more celebrated than these fine fellows. Catering for the many troops in their forces is a hard and unforgiving job, remember that an army marches on its stomach, so it is essential that they are fed the right nutrients needed to keep a healthy fighting spirit.
Since the preparation of food is considered an art form by most oggam, it is no surprise that the entry to the Imperial catering college is made up from the most privilaged children and individuals who have shown aptitude in the culernary arts. Even an Oggam who makes his way through the ranks in the corps, must also be a fearless warrior, so it is not unusual for Og Empire forces to bring a portable war kitchen with them to battle. This is said to motivate the troops beyond the norm, giving rise to acts of great bravery and sacrifice from oggam who have been inspired by the smell of the Big cook’s latest creations.
The war kitchen section is led by what is termed a “big cook”, an experienced officer in his own right, along with his “little” cook assistants. They are then accompanied by ranks of other inexperienced trainee chef’s, who tirelessly work as peelers, choppers, waiters, and pot washers. In order to prove themselves worthy, they are required to defend the kitchen to the death, so in battle they take up arms and rage just like any other oggam soldier. There are large numbers of Blander oggam within the college, eager to show just how much their devotion to food is, and considering many oggam regard food as life itself, they tend to become a fearsome force in battle, showing a zeal that puts some others to shame, and is a good reason that they are highly respected and feared in equal measure.
Their symbol is that of the silver spoon, illustrating what a privilaged part they play in the empire, this item is also what the big and little cooks always carry with them, proudly denoting who they are and what honours bestowed upon the bearers of the biggest and best spoons. While the assistant “suis” chef’s have to earn this right, they still all carry one of some sort, as sometimes while on the battle field they will be called to perform the “pan rattle”, a great din caused by banging these spoons against various pots and pans, so to raise morale, scare or flush out enemies, or allow broken troops to regroup if they are too scattered.
Any Imperial general who has his own war kitchen staff is regarded with class and envy by other nobles in society, as with them he is able to lay on huge lavish feasts for visiting leaders or notables. It is noted that sometimes a catering corps division may employ the odd Scrofa Truffle miner as well from time to time, as any form of truffle to the oggam is considered precious beyond belief. In addition, a Big cook might command his own pack of hunting pigdogs and handler, so that he may gain access to wild game food while out on a campaign. These additions can lead to the Kitchen running like an entire military operation by itself, often putting many infantry divisions to shame with the high levels of skill and organisation not usually found within the imperial infantry.