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Cooking Skill Gain Guide by deathbeforelife

Version: 0.52 | Updated: 06/22/04

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                    ////// Cooking Skill Gain_Guide|______
                   /////John Collins - deathbeforelife|||||
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Table of Contents

1) Introduction
2) Version History
3) Skill Gain Theory
4) The Guild, The Shop, The Imaging, The Exams
5) Favored Recipes
    5a)  0 - 10
    5b) 10 - 20
    5c) 20 - 30
    5d) 30 - 40
    5e) 40 - 50
6) Ingredient Shopping Locations
7) Contact
8) Usage
9) Credit
10) Thanks


(1) Introduction


The purpose of this guide is to help beginning cookers level their skill.
The recipes listed here are not the only way to cooking greatness, but they
aim to level you with the least amount of lost gil, balanced with conservation
of time.  I do not guarantee any finite cost for this guide, as supplies and
products vary in price from server to server, day to day.  Any recipes which
are expected to give you a good enough profit to be noticed will be marked
with (!).

To get from section-to-section, search for the section number within
parentheses.  These are unique within the document. IE, if there were a
section 31, you would search for the string "(31)".  Of course, we all
know there is no Section 31.

On a side note, this is the first guide I have written, despite having been
a reader of GameFAQs since it first opened its electronic doors.  Some of you
know me from the message boards as deathbeforelife.  Even fewer of you know
me as Willian of the Quetzalcoatl server.  Most of you probably have no idea
who the hell I am.  So... fair warning.  This is probably poorly written, as
it is a first attempt.  If you see anything that really annoys you, send me
an email with "your guide sucks" in the title.  If you have anything to add
to the guide, throw it my way, and I'll probably put it in here eventually,
when I get around to updating the guide.  It's time for me to shut up now
and get to guiding you.  Not that any of you are actually reading this anyway.


(2) Version History


0.52 - 06/20/2004       Initial Version
                        Basic Information
                        Recipes up to level 52


(3) Skill Gain Theory


The most important factor in skill gain is level of recipe.  For best results,
I have found that cooking 5-7 levels above your current skill with guild
support is optimal.  You will still have failures, but not many, and you will
receive good skill-ups.  I pick a recipe which is 5-7 levels above me, get
three to five stacks of ingredients, and cook like mad.  This way, you can
get away with only paying for support twice.  If a recipe is losing gil and
you can safely switch to another which is 5-7 levels above you, switch, but
if the recipe is breaking even, or even making gil, I suggest cooking to the
cap, since such recipes aren't very common.

The second factor in leveling any skill is day of the week versus crystal used.
Cooking on the day of the week which is the same as the crystal used will
produce less failure, but lower skill gains.  This is good if you are tight
on cash, and patient.  Cooking on the day of the week which is strong against
the crystal used will produce higher failure rate, but higher skill gain.  If
you have spare gil, don't mind failure, and want to level in the least amount
of synths, this is the way to go.  Of course, if you are really in a hurry,
like I was, you won't pay attention to the day of the week at all, and synth
when you have time.

Water > Fire > Ice > Wind > Earth > Lightning > Water
Light and Dark are opposites, and are strong against each other.


(4) The Guild, The Shop, The Imaging, The Exams


The cooking guild is located in Windurst Waters.  The main NPCs you will
be interacting with are Kopopo, who runs the Guild Shop, Kipo-opo, who
gives out Advanced Imaging, and Piketo-Puketo, who will sign you up to join
the guild, and also handles testing to break the next level cap.  The shop
is in the hut on the right, and the imaging and testing NPCs are in the hut
on the left.

The shop sells cooking supplies from 05:00 to 20:00, on all days except
Darksday, when it is closed.  The guild has a limited stock of each item,
and the price is based on how many were bought in recent days.  If more
are bought, the price goes up, but if days go by and less are bought, the
price will drop.  The guild also has a maximum quantity it can hold of any
given item, so you can only sell back so many in any given day.

Imaging Support comes from more than one NPC in the guild, but you want to pay
Kipo-opo for Advanced Imaging Support.  It raises your skill more than the
free versions.  It costs 30 gil, plus 30 more for each 10 levels you have in
cooking.  The cost is really worth it, because the cost of multiple failed
synths can really destroy your gil supply.  Each round of support should last
you around 18 synths, so if you have three stacks of supplies, you should
be able to get away with two rounds of support.

Every ten levels of skill, you need to take a test to be able to raise your
skill higher.  You may take the test two levels early, and I suggest you take
it as soon as you can.  To pass the test, you must bring Piketo-Puketo a
certain dish.  You don't have to cook it your self, you may bring one from the
auction house, but that wouldn't have the same feeling of achievement, now
would it? Each time you break a level cap, your rank in the guild increases,
and you get a new title next to your level.  Below is a list of items you must
cook for the next rank.

Level  0: Amateur    - N/A

Level 10: Recruit    - Salmon Sub

  Earth Crystal      Black Bread           Apple Vinegar
  La Theine Cabbage  Mithran Tomato        Smoked Salmon
  Crying Mustard

Level 20: Initiate   - Pea Soup

  Fire Crystal       Distilled Water       Blue Peas x 3
  Wild Onion         Dried Marjoram

Level 30: Novice     - Vegetable Gruel

  Fire Crystal       Distilled Water       Tarutaru Rice
  Frost Turnip       Chamomile             Batagreens
  Rarab Tail

Level 40: Apprentice - Meat Mithkabob

  Fire Crystal       Wild Onion            Kazham Pepper
  Cockatrice Meat    Mhaura Garlic

Level 50: Journeyman - Apple Pie

  Fire Crystal       Pie Dough             Bird Egg/Lizard Egg
  Faerie Apple       Cinnamon              Maple Sugar


(5) Preferred Recipes

Recipes marked with ** denote recipes supplied by others, and are not my own
suggestion.  Many of them may be as good or better than the path that I took,
this is just to give credit where it is due.  For many levels, multiple
options exist.  The level ranges listed are not firm, but I do not recommend
starting before the minimum listed.  You may do so, but you will fail more
frequently than I would prefer myself.  In most cases, the upper limit is not
where you should stop, but rather where you must stop, as it is the skill cap.
I will mention in the description of the recipe if I believe you shouldn't
continue crafting to the cap.

I will try to explain the pros and cons of each option as best I can, but
every thing I say may not be true on your server.  Before you pick a single
recipe to cook, check the auction house.  You should consider the price of
ingredients which you must buy there, along with the going rate of the
product of your synthesis.  Also, note the speed at which the products sell,
as well as how many are already for sale.  If they sell one or two a day, and
there are already ten on the auction block, you may want to consider selling
back to an NPC for a loss, or picking another recipe.  I have tried to pick
recipes which sell back well at the least loss, but this isn't possible at
every single level, especially the first few.


(5a) 0 - 10

Lost of choices, none very good.  Don't get discouraged, the largest loss
comes from the first five or six levels.  I personally leveled on carrot
broth, pebble soup, boiled crayfish, then sliced sardines.  I believe that
carrot broth might want to be replaced by hard-boiled egg.  Check the auction
house on your server and decide for yourself.  Before level 5 it is not
required that you get travel to Windurst, but after that, you should most
certainly go to the guild and seek support to get the most out of your
cooking.  If you do travel to the guild, you can start the first few recipes
at level 0.

0 - 3
Carrot Broth (yield 4)

  Water Crystal      San d'Orian Carrot x 4

  pros  - Uses Water Crystal
        - Supplies can be bought from vendors
        - No Imaging required

  cons  - Loss of gil
        - Sells slowly at AH

  plan  - Sell back to vendor and cut your losses.  Might sell at AH, but
          very slowly, and not for very much.

0 - 4
Hard-boiled Egg **

  Fire Crystal       Bird/Lizard Egg       Distilled Water

  pros  - Sells back to AH at lower gil loss than Carrot Broth
        - No Imaging required

  cons  - Uses Fire Crystal
        - Supplies must be bought from auction house or farmed

  plan  - Sell back to Auction House.  Not really sure about the cap on this.

2 - 5
Pebble Soup **

  Fire Crystal       Distilled Water       Flint Stone x 3

  pros  - Easy to farm flint stones
        - Water is cheap
        - No Imaging Required
        - Leads well into Sliced Sardine

  cons  - Uses Fire Crystal
- Does not stack
        - Does not sell back well at AH

  plan  - Sell back to NPCs

2 - 6
Grilled Hare **

  Fire Crystal       Hare Meat             Dried Marjoram

  pros  - Good to use yourself, if you are a starting melee
        - Very easy to farm meat

  cons  - Uses Fire Crystal
        - Does not stack

  plan  - Sell back if they sell well, or eat them yourself.

4 - 6
Boiled Crayfish

  Fire Crystal       Crayfish              Distilled Water
  Rock Salt

  pros  - Crayfish easy to fish, and will level your fishing skill
        - Water + Salt cheap to buy

  cons  - Uses Fire Crystal
        - Sells back very poorly
        - Potential HUGE loss of gil

  plan  - Pretty bad... Consider using Grilled Hare instead.  Check your AH,
          though, it might sell okay on your server.

5 - 11
Sliced Sardine (yield 2)

  Wind Crystal       Bastore Sardine

  pros  - Yields 2
        - Uses only one ingredient
        - Sells back fairly well, at no loss, or even some gain

  cons  - Uses Wind Crystal

  plan  - Cook as many as you can.  Take this to level 11, as you can gain
          skill with your only loss being from failures.  Don't forget to
          take the exam before you hit 10.


(5b) 10 - 20

Here you will probably lose more gil.  This is the last stage where this will
really happen, though, so hang in there.  Again, before you level, check the
auction house and pick an appropriate recipe.


11 - 16
Roast Mushroom **

  Fire Crystal       Rock Salt             Dance/Sleep/Woozyshroom x 2

  pros  - Can get you to 16 with fewer failures than butter

  cons  - Uses Fire Crystal
        - Mushrooms expensive, unless you are high enough to farm them
        - Sells back for much less than the cost of just the mushrooms

  plan  - I don't really like these, but see how they sell on your server.  If
          you can get away with little/no loss, consider it.

11 - 20
Selbina Butter (yield 4)

  Ice Crystal        Selbina Milk          Rock Salt

  pros  - You will need butter for Pie Dough
        - You can put the butter into baked popotos
        - Sells back okay

        - High-yield synth

  cons  - You will fail a LOT if you start at 11

  plan  - I have level 11 as the minimum, because I don't like any other
          recipes here.  I have level 20 as the maximum, because that's where
          it caps.  I took Butter up to level 16, and cooked popotos up to 20.
          If you need gil, sell it back to the Auction House.  If you have
          space and gil, go ahead and keep this stuff for pie crust.  If you
          can make a profit or come close to breaking even at the AH, consider
          taking this all the way to 20.

16 - 22
Baked Popoto

  Fire Crystal       Selbina Butter        Popoto

  pros  - You already have butter lying around
        - Popotos are cheap, and can be picked up from the guild
        - Seem to sell back well

  cons  - Uses Fire Crystals
        - Not as useful as butter
        - Sells back for less than cost of just the Fire Crystals

  plan  - Not all that great, but you should already have butter.  Seemed to
          level me quickly.  Sell back to AH.  I wouldn't take this past 20.


(5c) 20 - 30

Huzzah!  You can level all the way to 29, and make quite a bit of gil quickly.
After hitting 29, I started cooking Pineapple Juice, which is now the favorite
drink of my RDM.  These levels are where cooking really turns around, now that
you can actually make gil, and cook useful items.


20 - 29
Insect Balls (Insect Paste) (yield 12) (!)

  Earth Crystal      Little Worm           Millioncorn
  Distilled Water

  pros  - Uses Earth Crystals
        - VERY cheap to make
        - Failure won't cost you much
        - Supplies can be bought from vendors
        - Each synth makes a stack
        - Sells back quickly
        - Sells back at a HUGE gain

  cons  - By the time I've been logged in for an hour, I have had at least 3
          /tells from friends asking to cook more paste.

  plan  - Wow.  Cook these, and you will make back every single gil you have
          invested and more.  Failures won't cost you much at all, so go ahead
          and cook them early.  Get naked, buy lots of supplies.  Cook until
          you are full, and walk out to Windurst Woods.  Stick them in your
          bazaar at less than Auction House prices, and they should sell out
          quickly.  I sold mine for dirt-cheap, 15 gil each, just enough to
          cover the cost of cooking, so I could get back and cook some more.
          I went from 20 to 29 in 2 hours this way, and made a few friends.
          I still cook for these friends, and sell them paste at a reduced


(5d) 30 - 40

You will either lose gil in the beginning, or go slowly.  Your choice.  I
prefer to go quickly, because Pet Food Delta will make excellent gil WITHOUT
using the Auction House.  You can't do that every day.  Until you hit level
39.  Then you can.  I guess I lied.


29 - 34
Black Bread (yield 4)

  Fire Crystal       Rye Flour             Distilled Water
  Rock Salt

  pros  - Fairly cheap to make
        - Sells back to guild
        - Very little loss

  cons  - Uses Fire Crystal
        - Slight Gil loss when sold back to vendor
        - Flour does not stack, so you will need to be quite naked

  plan  - I took this to 33, myself, where I switched to the lucrative Pet
          Food Delta.  You will lose some gil, but you should have enough left
          over from Insect Paste.  This will get you to pet food quickly,
          though, so keep at it.  Get naked, grab 3 stacks of non-flour
          supplies, and head to the guild.  Grab as many flour as you can fit
          while still keeping one open slot, get your support, and start
          synthing.  Sell those back to the guild, grab more flour, repeat.
          You can cap yourself on these fairly quickly and only losing a
          couple thousand gil.

29 - 35
Meat Ball

  pros  - Uses Earth Crystal
        - Uses cheap ingredients
        - Caps one higher than bread, so gain will be quicker
        - Can make a slight profit
        - High yield

  cons  - Sells back very slowly at Auction House

  plan  - I think that Black Bread is better, because you can get to Pet Food
          Delta quicker by skipping the Auction House, and that is where you
          really make gil.  Check how it sells at your Auction House before
          doing this.

Pet Food Delta (yield 6) (!)

  Earth Crystal      Land Crab Meat        Bird Egg*
  Distilled Water    Rye Flour

*WARNING!  Unlike many other recipes, Lizard Egg WILL NOT WORK.

  pros  - Uses Earth Crystal
        - Excellent money-maker
        - Sells back to NPCs at a huge profit
        - High yield

  cons  - Land Crab Meat hard to find sometimes.

  plan  - Buy as much Land Crab Meat as you can, it sells fast.  Go cook, and
          take your Pet Food to Timbre Timber's, right outside the guild.  On
          Quetzalcoatl, Land Crab Meat goes ~3200/stack, and the rest of the
          supplies are less than 2k total.  With zero fame (poor me) it sells
          back 87 gil each.  A stack of supplies makes 6 stacks of food, with
          zero failures.  That's 6264 gil.  That's a 1000 gil profit, without
          selling at the auction house.  Even with a failure, you still make
          a profit.  When I do this in San d'Oria, it sells for 97 gil. That's
          6984, for a fairly quick profit of over 1500 gil.  Buying out all of
          the supplies in Bastok, Windurst and San d'Oria using my mule and a
          chocobo, I can make 15-20 stacks of this a night, for a good profit
          of about 20,000 gil over 3-4 hours.  A good break from farming.


(5e) 40 - 50

Starts out slow again, but picks up quickly.  You will be stockpiling future
supplies, then making good gil.  These are fun levels, IMO.


39 - 42
Pie Dough (yield 4)

  Water Crystal      Selbina Butter        Rock Salt
  San d'Orian Flour

  pros  - Uses Water Crystal
        - Finally uses left-over butter
        - Used to make pies.  I like pie.

  cons  - Won't make you much gil at all

  plan  - I cooked five stacks of supplies, making 20 stacks of dough.  Now I
          won't be needing any more dough for quite a while.  I kept it for

42 - 46
Pickled Herring (yield 4) (!)

  Ice Crystal        Nosteau Herring       Rock Salt
  Dried Marjoram

  pros  - Some supplies are very cheap from vendors
        - Sells back at a HUGE profit
        - High yield
        - Not much else to cook at these levels

  cons  - Sells back relatively slowly
        - Herring is expensive

  plan  - Well...  it sells back slowly, but if you are patient, you can make
          a LOT of gil off of this.  I wouldn't suggest having it be your main
          income like Pet Food or Insect Paste may be, but it's a good
          stepping stone up to Crayfish Balls.  I would cook this for one
          stack, try to sell them, and see how it goes.  If it goes well,
          do it again.  If not, you might consider skipping to crayfish balls
          a little early.

42 - 48
Apple Pie

  pros  - Good to use yourself if you are a mage
        - Sells back fast

  cons  - Uses Fire Crystals
        - Uses expensive ingredients
        - Failure is potentially very expensive

  plan  - I don't like cooking pie for leveling purposes here, because failure
          is potentially costly.  If Pickled Herring can work for you, it is
          a much better option.

45 - 52
Crayfish Ball (yield 12) (!)

  Earth Crystal      Crayfish x3*          Distilled Water
  San d'Orian Flour

*You can use a Gold Lobster instead.  You can stab yourself in
the eye with a spork, too.  Neither are recommended.

  pros  - Same concept as Insect Paste

  cons  - Sells back slightly slower

  plan  - Cook these suckers to 52.  They fish up Nebimonites, which are used
          in the process of shihei.  Blink-tanks can't ninj without the stuff,
          so the demand is fairly high.  Good money maker-over all.


(6) Ingredient Shopping Locations

Again, these are just the ingredients you will need to level cooking using
the recipes in this guide.  Before buying from shops, check the Auction House
prices.  They might be lower on your server.  I am listing only the Windurst
locations, as that is where you should be when cooking for skill gain.  I am
avoiding regional Vendors for now.  I might list them in a later version, in
their own section.

Apple Vinegar      - Guild Shop
Bastore Sardine    - Auction House, or fish yourself
Batagreens         - Guild Shop
Bird Egg           – Auction House
Black Bread        – Guild Shop
Blue Peas          – Auction House
Chamomile          - Upih Khachla Windurst Waters Goods Shop
Cinnamon           - Guild Shop
Cockatrice Meat    - Guild Shop (probably MUCH cheaper at AH)
Crayfish           - Auction House, or fish yourself
Crying Mustard     - Guild Shop
Danceshroom        - Auction House, or farm from Funguars
Distilled Water    – Vendor in Timbre Timber’s in Windurst Waters
Dried Marjoram     – Guild Shop
                     Upih Khachla Windurst Waters Goods Shop
Faerie Apple       - Guild Shop
Flint Stones       - Auction House, or farm from Worms
Frost Turnip       - Guild Shop
Hare Meat          – Auction House, or farm from bunnies
Kazham Pepper      - Guild Shop
La Theine Cabbage  - Guild Shop
Land Crab Meat     - Auction House
Little Worm        – Ensasa Windurst Waters Goods Shop
                     Babubu in Port Windurst (fishing guild)
Lizard Egg         – Auction House
Maple Sugar        - Auction House
Mhaura Garlic      - Guild Shop
Mithran Tomato     - Guild Shop
Millioncorn        – Guild shop, but check Auction House price, too.
Nosteau Herring    - Auction House
Pie Dough          – Make it yourself
Popoto             – Guild Shop
                     Upih Khachla Windurst Waters Goods Shop
Rarab Tail         - Guild Shop
Rock Salt          - Guild Shop
Rye Flour          – Guild shop DOES NOT STACK
San d’Orian Carrot – Aveline in Rambiroy’s, Southern San d’Oria
San d'Orian Flour  – Guild shop DOES NOT STACK
Selbina Butter     – Make it yourself
Selbina Milk       – Guild Shop
Sleepshroom        - Auction House, or farm from Funguars
Smoked Salmon      - Guild Shop
Tarutaru Rice      - Guild Shop
Wild Onion         - Auction House, or farm from Goblin Thugs
Woozyshroom        - Auction House, or farm from Funguars


(7) Contact

I accept all complaints/corrections/praise/compliments/questions, but I do 
not tolerate whining or rudeness.  Those won't get you very far.

You can e-mail me at bmpguy1234 at hotmail.  I would spell it out, but I'm
tired of spam, and I know there's little programs running out there to strip
email addresses out of documents like these.  If you are going to e-mail me,
put COOKING GUIDE in the title near the beginning.

MSNIM: same as above

AIM: LOTFofHRD  I am rarely on this, as I am more frequently on my work AIM,
which I would rather not put here.  If you really, really want to AIM me,
send me an email with your AIM, and I'll IM you.

If none of those work for you, I'm at the GameFAQs message boards most
weekdays during the day-time, but very rarely at night or on weekends.


(8) Usage

As of now, this guide is only allowed to be stored at GameFAQs.

If you wish to use this guide on your site for some reason, e-mail me first.
You may print this out, but please keep it all in one piece, unedited. I,
along with those who submitted their own recipes, have spent quite a bit of
time on this FAQ.  I'm not going to hunt you down myself if you don't follow
these rules, but I might send Escape after you, and he has sharp little


(9) Credit

90% of what I know about cooking has come from Tuku of Quezalcoatl.  He is a
linkshell member, and a great friend.  He gave me much advice throughout my
cooking career.

From the GameFAQs message boards, the following users submitted recipes:
Escovarks      - Roast Mushrooms
RedTail        - Hard-boiled Eggs
Cactusjack1999 - Pebble Soup
Unshanna       - Grilled Hare

From the GameFAQs message boards, the following users submitted vendors:

uselessend     - Ensasa/Upih Khachla

From the GameFAQs message boards, the following users submitted corrections:

uselessend     - Pointed out I forgot Rye Flour in Pet Food Delta

Brady Official FFXI Guide - Most of my recipes which didn't come from Tuku.

ffxi.allakhazam.com - Some skill caps, and the recipe for Crayfish Balls


(10) Thanks

First and foremost, thanks to Ranting Nord/Escape for getting me interested
in this game.  I wouldn't have played it at all without you drooling over it
in front of me at Best Buy.

Thanks to my misspelled linkshell, KnightsWhoSayNei, for your support,
with advice, guidance, crystals, and countless other things.  As to not play
favorites, I will put them in alphabetical order.
Larana (I suppose you, too...)
And all the new people.
And the ones I forgot.

Thanks to all who have submitted additions/corrections.  Your names are under
credits, and I'm sure you know who you are.

Thanks CJayC, for keeping GameFAQs free to the public.

Thanks Squeenix, for not screwing up this game like so many other MMORPGs.

And... thanks to everybody else who I forgot.


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