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    • This has to be my most heart-breaking epic fail in a long time.

      That is suppose to be consomme. It cost me $40 in ingredients and two days to make.
      And it still doesn't taste as good as Better Than Bouillon, which I can buy for $6 a jar at Costco.
    • Spinach Bhajias (p. 17)
      I made two errors when making this recipe: first, I added the water too quickly when making the batter so wound up with too much of it. This meant I had to then add more chickpea flour, which made these a bit doughier than they were supposed to be. Second, I used a scoop to form them, which did not leave the edges ragged enough. They are supposed to be rough around the edges, which then get crispy when fried, but mine were too smooth and neat. That said, the taste overall was good, particularly dipped in the tamarind chutney she suggests.

    • My chocolate room fridge - held together by magnets of many sorts!



    • My first-ever attempt at ramen was a fun, creative yet challenging adventure and I'd say for a rookie attempt the final dish was, shall we say, given a passing grade.  Like a B-. 

      From a visual standpoint and the contrasting tastes and textures, it was a good dish, but the broth lacked flavor.  The noodles didn't really soak up much taste of the lipid broth.  I brushed the salmon with Chinese dark soy sauce and it was delicious, but probably would have been better as a stand alone along with some rice.  Yet it was a good starting point and along with what I've learned from you so far, I'm confident my next ramen dish will be better. 


      I bought fresh, frozen and dried noodles at the Asian market earlier in the week, all teetering on the definition of "ramen noodles."  For this dish I chose these dried noodles-


      Granted, they are "Japanese Style" noodles made in Taiwan, but I'm finding a lot of noodles labeled as "ramen" can be misleading-


      So it's labeled as Chuka-Soba, Japanese Style Noodle, but can be used in both Ramen and Yaki Soba dishes. The noodles were made with wheat flour, cornstarch, salt,

      soybean oil, potassium carbonate and yellow coloring-


      I suppose you could call the garnishes I chose as spanning the globe, not exclusively Japanese.  From the upper left to right: pickled lettuce from Fujian China,

      lemon zest, pea shoots from California, green onion and pickled radish, (takuwan), from Hawaii.  We haven't seen the start of the Spring salmon fishery in the Pacific Northwest, so I bought farm-raised salmon which was actually quite delicious and moist-


      The noodles after boiling for about 4 minutes-


      With the miso-dashi broth-


      After broiling, I seasoned the salmon with Japanese togarashi spices, seasame oil, Chinese peppercorn chile oil and mustard seed oil made in Mumbai-


      Miso soup is delicate in my taste view, and so I think ramen needs a more hearty broth like some of you have shown us.  I'll work on the broth next time and choose some different garnishes, probably cut way back on the portion of the meat or seafood.  It was a good, Asian noodle soup dish but I've got work to do.
    • I myself am partial to the old fashioned crinkle cut fries.  They remind me of my childhood when pretty much any hamburger joint served them but only a few places in town now do so.  For years I was on a quest to find a fancy cutter for crinkle cut fries, but settled on an inexpensive hand held cutter.  I like how the crinkle fries have ripples and the higher edges get more crispy.  I do like regular French fries, curly fries not so much and thick cut, so-so.  But if you're up to it as I am on occasion, fry your potatoes in beef tallow, (like McDonald's did for years).  I guess you've all just inspired me to make some crinkle fries!