|Posted on November 12, 2013 at 5:05 PM||comments (0)|
Freshness is delicious. Japanese cooking is about sourcing fresh ingredients and not fussing with them too much. Because Japanese foods are largely saucless, spiceless, and oil-less, the ingredients themselves must be beaituful, flavorful, and fresh. This usually means foods in season. Kabocha squash and pumpkins must feel heavy. Eggplants mush be shinny and unbruised. Fish fresh from the market don't need the disguise of a heavy sauce. Visit the farmers markets and the Asian markets frequently. Talk to farmers. Do grow your own vegetables. Don't hesistate to improvise with non-Japanase foods like chard, artichokes, and zuchinni.
|Posted on November 4, 2013 at 10:30 PM||comments (0)|
|Posted on June 1, 2013 at 10:10 AM||comments (1)|
I am in San Francisco doing several food events. One that we just finished on May 28 is a dinner at Tartine, themed around Koji - fermented rice. We "kojiied" so many foods - we used it to marinate beef, veggies, fish, even the daikon garnish of my soba.
I made 120 servings of soba - a record. I had Lori, one of the bakers from Bar Tartine, help me knead the dough so I managed to produce stable noodles. Pretty happy with the result and it was a sell out night. Several reviews came out of SF Chronicle. Here is the first one.
|Posted on May 26, 2013 at 3:55 PM||comments (0)|
|Posted on March 17, 2012 at 3:55 PM||comments (1)|
|Posted on March 9, 2012 at 8:00 PM||comments (0)|
|Posted on September 6, 2011 at 3:10 PM||comments (0)|
|Posted on January 15, 2011 at 12:07 AM||comments (0)|
|Posted on November 19, 2010 at 2:39 PM||comments (2)|
|Posted on September 12, 2010 at 1:52 AM||comments (0)|
|Posted on July 8, 2010 at 1:33 PM||comments (1)|
When it comes to tempura, everyone loves it but some people don't want to bother making it at home because it looks too complicated. But it really isn't it. I wrote a story for the Los Angeles Times Food Section today that will give you further insight into the art of making Tempura. Enjoy! (here is the link to the LA Times story and recipes)
Shishito peppers have pockets full of seeds. Make a slit and
remove the seeds before frying to keep them from popping
in the oil and creating unpleasant oil spills.
Asparagus is a good vegetable to practice making tempura.
For more, please read my story in the LA Times.
|Posted on July 2, 2010 at 5:23 PM||comments (0)|
Eggplant, Age and Mitsuba Miso Soup
3 1/2 cups Dashi or Vegan Dashi or Sardine Dashi
3 Tbls or more of Miso to taste
2 eggplant, peeled and sliced vertically into 1/2 inch pieces
1 age tofu, sliced into 1/2 inch pieces, crosswise
4 mitsuba leaves, chopped
Bring the Dashi to a boil in a medium saucepan, and add the eggplant.
Cook for three minutes over medium heat, then reduce the heat to maintain a simmer.
Put the age and cook for another minute. In a small bowl, dissolve 3 1/2 tablespoons of the miso paste in a few tablespoons of the warm Dashi. Add the mixture to the saucepan. Taste and add more miso paste, Dashi or water, depending on how strong the soup tastes. Turn off heat.
Pour the soup into individual bowls. Ganish with mitsuba leaves.
Serve immerdiately. Do not boil the soup.
|Posted on July 1, 2010 at 1:56 AM||comments (0)|
If I get to choose one vegetable to have in the fridge to munch on, it is not a carrot or celery but kabocha squash. I cook the cut pieces of Kabocha in a light syrup, just long enough to give them a hint of sweetness. The syrup is drained so the kabocha is never sugary sweet or mushy. I often serve this dish with soba to supplement the Vitamin A. Soba offers the rest of the good stuff.
1/4 of small to medium size Kabocha squash
2 cups water
3/4 cup sugar
Cut the kabocha squash in bite size pieces. Bevel the corners.
Bring the water and sugar in a medium size saucepan. Add the Kabocha
and bring to a boil over medium heat. Then lower heat and simmer for 12-15 minutes until the meat is cooked. Test with toothpick.
Drain the syrup. Serve in a bowl.
Keeps for a week in the fridge.
|Posted on May 31, 2010 at 11:00 AM||comments (0)|
|Posted on April 19, 2010 at 12:53 PM||comments (0)|
|Posted on January 16, 2010 at 7:23 AM||comments (0)|
1 cup dried hijiki, hydrated
3 -4 dried shiitake mushrooms, hydrated
1 large or 2 small pieces Age (deep fried tofu pouches) optional
2 medium carrots, peeled and sliced into matchsticks, 1/8 thick
1 tsp peeled and thinly sliced ginger
2 tbls roasted sesame oil or vegetable oil
2 tbs mirin
1 tbs sake
1 tsp sugar or honey (optional)
1/4 cup soy sauce, or to taste
Salt if needed
Garnish: 1 tsp roasted sesame seeds (optional)
Soak hijiki in cold water to cover for at least one hour. Drain. Rinse a couple more times to remove impurities.
Hydrate shitakes in cold water to cover, about 20 minutes. Slice shitakes into 1/8 inch pieces. Reserve soaking liquid for the stock if you like.
Put oil in a frying pan over medium-high heat. Stir fry the carrots, age, mushrooms and ginger first for 2-3 mintues.
Add the hydrated and drained hijiki. Stir a couple times; add the stock or shiitake soaking liquid, mirin, sake, sugar and soy sauce. Stir, turn heat to simmer, and cook, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes until most of the liquid is evaporated. Mixture should not be soupy or dry. Taste, and make adjustments with soy sauce, sugar and salt, if needed.
Serve as a salad or appetizer, about 1/3 cup servings per person. Garnish with roasted sesame seeds.
|Posted on January 6, 2010 at 7:49 PM||comments (0)|
|Posted on December 24, 2009 at 6:40 PM||comments (0)|
|Posted on December 12, 2009 at 7:41 PM||comments (0)|
Kimpira Ninjin - Kinpira gobo
I found some rare heirloom carrots at the Farmer's market. This maroon carrot in particular was a beauty. It happened to even match what I was wearing- my hand knit sweater from Uruguay. I wanted to wear the carrot around my neck!
I knew these carrots would be delicious cooked with a little butter but then I was thinking, how about stir-fried Kinpira-style, with a little red chili pepper to spice it up? Usually, Kinpira is made with carrots and burdock but I wanted to try it with just carrots.
A little too thick but what the heck.
The carrots came in odd shapes, so it wasn't easy to peel them but I did the best I could. Then came the slicing. Even worse. With Kimpira, I should have sliced them more thinly but I relaxed and some came out rather thick. The maroon carrots had a beautiful yellow interior. I sauteed the sliced carrots in sesame oil for a few minutes until they became tender, and then seasoned them with soysauce, mirin and sugar. The maroon carrots lost their bright red color in the cooking and turned beige. The yellow carrots were nutty and the most flavorful of the three. The cracked red pepper gave the dish a nice spice, the roasted sesame seeds another layer of texture and toasty flavor. It was a nice dish.
5 cups of carrots, peeled and sliced into matchsticks, 1/8 inch thick. (mine were thicker
because the carrots had odd shapes)
2 Tbls of soysauce or more to taste
1 Tbls mirin
1 Tbls sugar or less, depending on the natural sweetness of the carrots
1 Tbls sake
3 Tbls Roasted sesame oil
Red cracked pepper
Roasted ground sesame seeds
Over mediumm heat, saute the carrots for 3 minutes, until they are tender. Add the seasonings and cook for another 3-5 mintues, until the carrots absorb most of the liquid. Taste to see if it needs more seasoning. Adjust sparingly with soysauce, and other seasonings.
As a garnish, the cracked red pepper will give it a zing! It's nice too with roasted sesame seeds.
|Posted on December 8, 2009 at 2:21 PM||comments (0)|