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    Yokohama, Japan

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  1. I live in Japan. On one of my favorite shows they made a variation of croquettes without deep frying. Here are the steps: Cube a peeled potato, cook it about a cup of water in a fry pan. When soft, add 1/2 a minced onion, cover until soft. Add very lean ground beef and a few light seasonings and cook gently mashing the potato until all the water is either absorbed or evaporated and the mixture become stiff. Form patties in the pan. Add panko to the same fry pan and toast until they are the color you want. Lift the patties into the toasting panko, flip to coat then serve. You could see the patties were very soft, but I love the idea. I'd love suggestions on how to possibly make a crust for added texture without deep frying. Also, any suggestions on a binder to make the mixture stiffer?
  2. I'm in the market for a katusokiri. I came here to see what you all had to say about them and figure I'd add links to the two I'm considering. I prefer the smaller one, but the the one with the SK blade is on backorder for five months, so I might just go ahead and purchase the more expensive one. I'm going to Seibu to take a look at them today. http://www.dai-ya.com/台屋オンラインショップ/ From Daiya, a new brand, they're handmade. I'd purchase this one if only to support a local business. And this one from the well-known knife company, Kiya. http://www.ameyokonet.jp/kiya/search.php?f_keyword=%B3%EF%C0%E1&f_search=%B8%A1%BA%F7 If you've had any experience with them, let us know.
  3. My big question is whether or not the sugar keeps them hard requiring the additional cooking time. I'm going to have to make them again without the sugar and see. Helenjp, you've tried making them in the pressure cooker? Did they burst?
  4. No, it's not the precursor, it's not anko, which is made with azuki beans (and part of the zen-zai I mentioned). The black beans are popular as a side dish in a bento or as a part of the new years foods. And when I say a side dish, I mean like 10 beans, a splash of colour and sweets to the bento.
  5. I live in Japan and I've started on Japanese cooking. I'm one of those people who likes to know why certain things are done and those answers aren't in any of the cooking blogs or books I've come across. For example, why cook black beans for eight or more hours in sugar? Around new years there's a very popular dish of sweetened black beans. I know the goal is to cook them so the skins don't burst, but up to half a day? What's more, most recipes add some of the sugar at the beginning. Were it rice, it would never cook. Does putting the sugar in the beans from the beginning slow the cooking? Does a prolonged cooking partially candy the beans? I'd really like to know, because I made a dish with Azuki beans the other day (zen-zai) and to keep the skins from bursting I cooked the soaked beans for over two hours before adding the sugar and some of the beans did burst. For reference, the recipes I followed flowed like this: 1) Soak the beans over night, change the water. 2) Bring to a boil with a bit of salt or soy sauce and some amount of sugar. 3) Reduce the heat to barely a simmer with a piece of parchment over the surface and let it boil until they're just tender -- at least eight hours. 4) Add 1/3 the amount of the remaining sugar, cook for another half an hour. Repeat. Repeat. 5) Add a bit more soy sauce. Done.
  6. I bought a bottle of Nikka Coffey Grain Whisky -- which was one of the best whiskies I've ever had when mixed with soda -- and Nikka 17 year old Whisky. I've been looking for a bottle of the 21 year old Hibiki from Suntory. Japanese whisky rocks!
  7. Around October I made my first batch, spread over three bottles, of Aged Egg Nog. One was to sample week to week to get a feel for flavor and the other two were for the holiday -- it really does get better as it ages. The eggnog was such a success I've decided I have to have more. Of the recipes I started with was Alton Browns which said you could age it for a year, but every other recipe put a shelf life of at most two months in the fridge. Looking at recipes for Irish Cream I keep reading the same shelf life. I would think with the alcohol content high enough there would be no spoilage, even with raw egg yolks. Am I wrong in this assumption? Is there any science about how long something will keep in alcohol? In that past I've had Fruit Cakes, soaked in Navy Rum, that lasted years and were just as pleasant to eat after many years tucked away on grandma's pantry shelves.
  8. cteavin


    I have 10 kilos of quince. I'd like to preserve them. I read recipes in which they are peeled and packed in honey raw. Honey is too expensive, so i was thinking I could pack them in sugar syrup in a large glass jar. Has anyone here ever preserved quince this way? I'm worried that over time the liquid in raw quince would dilute the syrup and attract mould. If not, does anyone have another suggestion besides paste?
  9. Thank you much. I'll give it a try.
  10. Can I ask, what kind of vegetables did you use to make your veggie stock?
  11. I just like trying new things. I have two pressure cookers. Honestly, I'm not a fan for using them to make stock unless I'm trying to quickly extract gelatin from chicken feet, pigs trotters, or hoof. I'm still a fan of the all day, giant pot but I like to clarify by freezing it and melting it through the chinois. A bit of the old and new, I guess. A foot note to this post is that the remouillage came out really well in the sous vide.
  12. I looked through the Sous Vide section and didn't see this addressed, I hope I didn't miss it. I just made three batches of chicken stock. I put two chicken carcass, 2 feet, a veal bone, and a measure of onions/carrots with bay leaf and thyme and enough water to fill the bag. I made four bags and set them to cook for four, eight, twelve, and twenty-four hours at 95 degrees Celsius. The four-hour bag had the deepest chicken flavor, but none were strong enough to stand on their own without evaporation. To save time I combined them all into one pot and reduced. The end result is good, but not as good as four to six hours in a large pot on the stove. My question is when making stock with a sous vide should we reduce the amount of water to account for the evaporation which would naturally take place? And does the chicken flavor break down with heat over time?
  13. Thanks for the reply. Apparently copy write was breeched, as I can't see anything. ;-) What page is it on? I have a (gasp) pirated copy. What I really would like to know is if egg whites will work and is high fat necessary for sous vide. Any opinion?
  14. I got my sous vide last week. One of the first applications was the Crème brûlée I'd heard so much about -- it came out perfect. I searched online for a lower calorie custard, but every recipe uses cream and/or yolks, no whites. I decided to make a custard 1 part whole egg to two parts liquid (no starch), 83 degrees Celsius, 30 minutes. It set in the bag. I poured it in moulds and when cooled it tasted fine, but wasn't what I was looking for. Without going through dozens of eggs and liters of milk, does anyone have either a recipe for whole egg custard Sous Vide style, or some suggestions for my next batch? Thanks,
  15. I was in Yamada the other day. I looked carefully at both. The Hitachi's tray is longer by a bit and there is a bit more work room within. Why did you like the Heasio at the time? For me, the water over seemed really useful, but I killed nikuman yesterday when I used it -- hit and miss. It's a hit when you follow the recipe book which comes with the oven, but it's "case by case" when you do your own thing. It's not a bad oven. I'm pretty happy with it. I just wish the temperature were accurate at high levels. After 200 it really fluctuates. Is yours the type which can bake bread? It's not a feature I'm looking for, but it looked fun.
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