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Everything posted by JasonTrue

  1. They are certainly similar and probably a related species if not identical to what you're looking for; moki beoseot is, according to my cursory search based on the words on the packaging, tree ear mushroom, and it looks just like I'd expect wood ear mushrooms (or kikurage in Japanese) to look.
  2. Assuming a quality tea, the main problem with resteeping is that there's barely enough tea in most teabags to properly brew a typical cup. Most teabags have at most about 2 grams of tea, which is probably fine for the 100-150ml size teacups of a Victorian past, but barely provides adequate results for the typical 12 ounce coffee mug. The cheaper teas used in mass market teabags mask this effect a bit because they are usually broken leaves, which shortens the infusion time at the cost of flavor complexity thanks to the larger surface area. As a result, if you're brewing in a mug, black teas on
  3. JasonTrue

    Yuzu juice

    Yuzu juice works nicely in salad dressings; I usually do a simple dressing with a little mustard for emulsification, honey, and olive oil. An alternative involves shallots or onions, mustard, honey, a little soy sauce, and a neutral oil. It also works in cocktails in place of lemon, if it isn't full of preservatives or salt. (If it's 100%, it shouldn't be). I use it when making ponzu, but the zest is actually more important than the juice in a good ponzu, so I usually end up zesting a meyer lemon when in the US, since fresh yuzu are only rarely available and are very expensive in the Northwest
  4. As for the regionality of this bread, I don't think it's particularly specific. I lived in Hessen, quite central, and the pumpkin seed bread was quite common. I'm pretty sure I saw similar items when visiting Hannover this year. I didn't really spend much time in the Southern part of Germany, other than short trips many years ago, so I'm not sure whether it would be more or less common there. There are some shops that have more multigrain options than others, though.
  5. There's a place in Lynnwood that a friend of mine likes called Sea Salt Superstore. I haven't been there yet. I buy a few types of salt at World Spice Merchants on Western under the Pike Place Market (alderwood smoked, Himalayan and several others were available). PFI, Metropolitan Market, and on occasion, Whole Foods or PCC will do the trick, too.
  6. Yep, that's the one. Del Cook Cuisine de Nose. (It may also be their house, if I'm not mistaken). There's an old-school Japanese restaurant right next door, also in a house, and the obaachan who runs it has been known to dive for abalone for the night's dinner, or to go hunting for matsutake in the woods (which she traded for beer the time I was there). When I went there, it was also quite interesting to see a difference in perspective on what's important when building out a restaurant. Del Cook's kitchen is really, really small... I think my home kitchen may be roughly the same size, though
  7. I suspect the more traditional and the more high-level, the more difficult a barrier it will be to crack. However, I did meet a Canadian guy who runs a French restaurant in the rural outskirts of Osaka once who said that if I ever wanted to stage in Japan he could introduce me to the family that was financing his restaurant, as they also owned some more conventional Kyoto-area Japanese restaurants. This was on little more than a connection from an acquaintance of mine, a couple of email exchanges ahead of time, and after speaking to the chef and his wife after dining at his restaurant. It wasn
  8. One of my favorite phenomena of all time was a recipe on something like AllRecipes.com for boiled water, featuring all sorts of commentary from people who complained that it was tasteless, or the best recipe for boiled water ever, and included obligatory commentary from the "I'll substitute anything for anything and rate your recipe as if my substitutions are exactly the same" crowd... "Yeah, I really like this recipe, except that I substituted chicken stock for the water and added salt and pepper and some fresh herbs for seasoning. It's great! 5 stars!" As for me, I'm pretty idiosyncratic. Th
  9. I can't imagine pistachio seeds, but there are a lot of pumpkin seed roll variations. Kürbiskern-Brötchen would likely be the proper search term. It's often a whole wheat and rye base (probably 50-50 or so) blended with a sourdough culture of rye and ordinary yeast. Although it's possible to buy prepared sourdough in Germany, you can make the rye culture yourself much as you'd prepare a wheat sourdough, but it's typically not used for leavening as much as it is for relaxing the rye from the resulting acidity, and improving the flavor. Most German breads other than the cheap poppy seed refined
  10. My favorite preparation of good-quality fresh shiitake is simply to grill them, either over a small charcoal grill, or in a cast iron pan, until they're lightly charred and slightly sweaty. I serve them with freshly grated ginger and good quality soy sauce. When I stayed in a hot spring in Gero, they served each table a log with shiitake growing out of them, and we grilled them ourselves. It was simple and perfect. A mustard-based sauce can also work well. If you can spare the effort, it's nice to facet them with a knife, usually in 3 facets. I made just 2 facets in this version: Shishito to S
  11. JasonTrue


    I'm far from skilled in presentation, but for improving the honey presentation, drizzle it from far higher than you would normally be inclined to and move slightly faster than you think is comfortable. You should be able to create a thin cross-hatch like pattern with a little practice. Try it on an empty plate a couple of times before doing the real thing.
  12. JasonTrue

    Keeping Tofu

    I recommend changing water daily, but I'm usually too lazy to do that. It can extend the life a couple of days. But basically, tofu realistically only has a week or two of "good" life before you open it, and is usually only in nice condition for three or four days after opening. If it's not airtight and not in water, it will go bad sooner. In my area, tofu blocks vary from 200g (1/2 lb) to 700g (about 18 oz, or 1 1/8 lb) depending on which company makes it, and whether it's soft, momen, or that obnoxious extra-firm stuff that seems to sell best in the US. When I have too much tofu, I sometimes
  13. JasonTrue


    Only a few. But more importantly, nobody's publicly released anything remotely incriminating so far. No contract language that substantiates these claims, no names of representatives, no recordings of conversations. The lack of any supporting evidence aside from paraphrasing of mostly second-hand accounts makes me deeply suspicious.
  14. JasonTrue


    I'm fairly convinced that the lawsuit claims are very close to baseless, but there's certainly the possibility that a few ad sales people misrepresented what ads can do; it's far more likely, considering the contract that you have to sign before cutting a deal explicitly says you can't have things deleted because they disappoint you, that potential advertisers interpreted the pitch the way they wanted to. Any sort of Bayesian filtering mechanism that prunes content for any reason is open to claims of bias; I recall a spam filter was once accused of intentionally being designed to block an elec
  15. I'm not sure why coconut oil is healthier than cream or cocoa butter, but I'll leave that aside for the moment. The white chocolate ganaches bring out more matcha flavor, since the bitterness of the cocoa mass is replaced with matcha. I've had dark and milk chocolate infused with matcha, and they are usually very, very subtle. I'm not a huge fan of heavily cooked matcha, because once you add heat the matcha starts to age quickly in an unflattering way (the "fishy" taste one poster mentioned). In my experiments, and with one of my vendors products, we tried to add matcha to our white chocolates
  16. Regarding alternatives to an immersion circulator: my current preference is to prepare the kombu overnight in a Crock Pot style slow cooker, set to low. It takes only forethought, not much additional work. It was inspired by Hiroyuki's commentary on ryotei-like dashi a while back. It works really well. I wouldn't recommend longer than 24 hours, though; it did become bitter when I forgot about it for a couple of days after the initial use. Before using the slow cooker, I sometimes soaked the kombu for several hours in cool water, and simmered gently on low for a while. The immersion circulator
  17. What kind of green tea are you using? How old is it? How are you infusing it? How much are you using? I usually use matcha when I want an intense flavor. Good, fresh sencha will produce a pretty dramatic infusion in water, but old or low-grade sencha just slightly discolors the water. Genmaicha would provide flavor from toasted rice, but if you were serving duck, I'd probably only use genmaicha as "ochazuke", a bowl of rice topped with something small and flavorful (like seasoned duck) over which prepared genmaicha is poured. Mao feng will be slighly more perfumed than most Japanese green tea.
  18. My pasta roller came with very explicit, but unexplained, instructions that one must never incorporate salt into the pasta dough. I suspect it's probably not ideal for the equipment, but it may also be a matter of folklore. Commercial pasta often uses water instead of eggs, so it may actually be easier to dissolve salt completely in commercial pasta preparation; the one time I ignored the advice to avoid salt (didn't read the instructions first) the salt grains didn't entirely dissolve in the eggs. I'm not sure that having salt in the pasta would actually improve the flavor over salting the w
  19. My understanding was that this "r" month thing is related to the reproductive cycle of oysters, not air transport. See, for example, this article on Sexless Oysters, which was part of the title of a book by Northwest writer Adam Woog on Northwest inventions.
  20. I usually hate potlucks, for various reasons... When I've hosted them, there always seem to be a surplus of chips, bread, cheese, and store-bought desserts, which generally end up being leftover. When I've attended them, everything seems to be some variation of the same, or else it involves insane amounts of Best Foods-fake-mayonnaise-laden starchy foods. I host a lot of dinner parties, and keep control of things by inviting people I know to be more interested in food than average. When I go over to the home of someone of similar sensibilities where cooking will be somewhat collaborative, I us
  21. I stayed at a hotel a short distance from Incheon airport by shuttle bus, but I'm pretty sure I ate before reaching the airport proper. I suspect that you may be able to get a taxi to take you to a kamja-tang place near the airport... that was the one category of 24-hour restaurant I found when in Seoul proper, and it was nearly devoid of people other than a couple of middle aged men drinking soju and eating kamja tang (a Korean potato stew) at 7 in the morning. I can't remember actually eating at the airport, but I think that's because I'm nearly always in a major hurry at the Incheon airport
  22. No personal experience, but I've heard good things about this guy on Yelp: http://www.paellaking.com/ He mostly does catering, though apparently he shows up at farmer's markets as well.
  23. The primary value of salting isn't about the aku or bitterness, but it makes a small difference. (Some varieties of eggplant, such as the spherical Turkish one that turns red when it's overripe, are bitter unless consumed prior to peak ripeness, and salting doesn't help that at all). It does result in some dark colors being removed, but this is basically what is called "aku" in Japanese, and isn't particularly bitter. The main reason to salt is for texture. Unsalted eggplant will turn mushy faster when cooked than salted eggplant. You'll reliably get a firmer texture, even with braised eggplan
  24. I think if you want to get a high aroma per ml, use a high amount of yuzu peel. But make sure the fruit is completely covered. I did discover that a single sliced lemon in a batch of lychee infused gin (750ml, plus about 500g lychee) is quite powerful, though, so you probably don't need to be too extreme. I'm not sure it would work as a baking essence, but it's pretty strong lemon flavor as an undiluted drink. I'm pretty sure most citrus fruits would produce an interesting result. If it's not strong enough for baked goods and caramels, it would probably be fine for a sauce. The other alternati
  25. It occurred to me that you can make a reasonable essence either by infusing yuzu peel in a high alcohol spirit (the higher proof the better, but at least 40%; 60-75% would probably work better), and you might get reasonable results from a neutral vegetable oil infusion.
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