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Japanese Cooking at Home


Gabriel Lewis
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My first attempt at a Japanese hot pot. Chicken, carrots, fresh flower mushrooms, scallions and Taiwan bok choy. I was in two Asian stores today hoping to find a small nabe but my reading suggests that even the Japanese are turning to enameled cast iron as their vessel of choice. This small one is just a little too deep to allow the proper arrangement of the food.

Edited to add that I finished up by adding pre-cooked somen noodles to the broth remaining after I had eaten everything else.

Edited by Anna N (log)
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Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

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That looks awesome. How were the somen? In my experience, udon really is the best to soak up nabe broth.

Hi Hassouni,

The suggested "shime" was somen noodles and being a total newbie I followed the suggestion. It was from Takadashi's book Noodles. I agree with you however that udon would've been a better choice. Today I made up another small pot as I had leftovers and this time, even before reading your comments, I used ramen noodles. These are not the curly kind but fairly thick noodles sold without seasoning packages. Much more satisfactory.

Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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Buta no Kakuni (Japanese braised pork belly).

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Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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I didn't know this thread existed.  Tonight I made Japanese curry inspired by Elisabeth Andoh.  For a pickle I served finely julienned radishes (thanks to the appropriate disc of my ancient Japanese made Cuisinart) sprinkled with Japanese rice vinegar.

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Hassouni,

The eggs missed the mark but not by much. Will try a minute longer as soon as I restock my egg supply!

Jo,

It's nice to see you joining in. I know from your posts in other the topics that you have a strong interest in Japanese cooking. I have tried making Japanese curries using the commercial roux cubes but was very disappointed. I see Andoh makes hers without the use of the roux. What did you use for curry powder?

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Tonkatsu. Breaded fried pork and egg over steamed rice.

Edited because I hit post before I was finished.

Edited by Anna N (log)

Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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Chicken kaarage, rice, miso soup with fresh shiitake and scallions.

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Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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Jo,

It's nice to see you joining in. I know from your posts in other the topics that you have a strong interest in Japanese cooking. I have tried making Japanese curries using the commercial roux cubes but was very disappointed. I see Andoh makes hers without the use of the roux. What did you use for curry powder?

 

Thanks, Anna.  Andoh calls for cornstarch but I used a roux, made from scratch.  I think I would have enjoyed the curry more had the consistency been thinner.  But it sure was tummy filling.

 

The curry powder I used is from Oaktown Spice, by way of Umamimart:

 

http://umamimart.com/collections/kitchen/products/japanese-spices-by-oaktown-spice

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Nice looking plates, Anna. I've had a real craving for katsudon lately. That may be what I end up cooking on Monday for dinner.

 

As for curry, you might try taking a look at Tadashi Ono and Harris Salat's book Japanese Soul Cooking. There are several curry recipes in there, thickened using different techniques.

Matthew Kayahara

Kayahara.ca

@mtkayahara

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Thanks, Anna.  Andoh calls for cornstarch but I used a roux, made from scratch.  I think I would have enjoyed the curry more had the consistency been thinner.  But it sure was tummy filling.

 

The curry powder I used is from Oaktown Spice, by way of Umamimart:

 

http://umamimart.com/collections/kitchen/products/japanese-spices-by-oaktown-spice

Thank you, Jo. I came across that Umamimart while on a search for something else. I suspect the mild madras curry powder I have in-house would work equally well.

Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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Nice looking plates, Anna. I've had a real craving for katsudon lately. That may be what I end up cooking on Monday for dinner.

 

As for curry, you might try taking a look at Tadashi Ono and Harris Salat's book Japanese Soul Cooking. There are several curry recipes in there, thickened using different techniques.

Thank you, Matthew. If you do decide to do katsudon on Monday I hope you share your results. I have the book so will be looking up the curries today.

Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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Three colour rice with chicken sobboro, scallions and egg with wasabi furikake.

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Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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Teriyaki salmon, salted cucumber pickle, steamed rice and miso soup with she talkies and scallions.

I cannot explain the presence of the soup spoon! Momentary brain a cup I suspect.

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Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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Kakiage don (tempura vegetables over rice) with some pickles (cucumbers and radishes) and a dipping sauce. These are julienned vegetables -- in this case carrots and onions. I was quite amazed at how flavourful this turned out to be considering how little was involved.

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Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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The night before last I began my meal with a clear soup of ichiban dashi (Dave Arnold method) flavored only with a small amount of marudaizu shoyu.  I shaved the katsuobushi while the konbu anovaed.  This soup I served in my new aeka (horse chestnut wood, as I understand) lacquered soup bowl -- the first use of it!  I confess I enjoyed three bowlsful.  Two thirds of a liter.  Which is probably rude.  But since I was dining only with myself...

 

Following the soup was half a simply steamed (pressure steamed for about an hour) Japanese style red skinned and light fleshed sweet potato.  No sauce.  The naked sweet potato was perfect in every way.  Rice, and the leftover curry from the other night.  The curry was not good.  It was not good the first time either.  Maybe my tastes don't run to this style of curry.

 

Pickles were finely julienned daikon (credit once again to Cuisinart) in rice vinegar, and store-bought Chinriu Honten umeboshi.

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The night before last I began my meal with a clear soup of ichiban dashi (Dave Arnold method) flavored only with a small amount of marudaizu shoyu. I shaved the katsuobushi while the konbu anovaed. This soup I served in my new aeka (horse chestnut wood, as I understand) lacquered soup bowl -- the first use of it! I confess I enjoyed three bowlsful. Two thirds of a liter. Which is probably rude. But since I was dining only with myself...

Following the soup was half a simply steamed (pressure steamed for about an hour) Japanese style red skinned and light fleshed sweet potato. No sauce. The naked sweet potato was perfect in every way. Rice, and the leftover curry from the other night. The curry was not good. It was not good the first time either. Maybe my tastes don't run to this style of curry.

Pickles were finely julienned daikon (credit once again to Cuisinart) in rice vinegar, and store-bought Chinriu Honten umeboshi.

Wow. Even the most tradition bound of Japanese cooks would admire your dedication. Not only making the dashi from scratch but shaving your own katsuobushi.

Edited because I hit post before I was finished.

Edited by Anna N (log)

Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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Beef gyudon with soy simmered shiitake mushrooms and pickled cucumber.

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Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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From memory, 15 g konbu per liter, 65 deg C for one hour, sous vide.  Then finish with shaved katsuobushi normally.  I use 10 g konbu to 2/3 liter solid distilled water.

 

So is the katsuobushi added to the bag after 1 hr, or is the kombu stock transferred to a pot or something first?

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Tonkatsu with shredded cabbage, cucumber pickles, soy simmered shiitakes, Japanese mustard and Ki takao sauce.

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Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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So is the katsuobushi added to the bag after 1 hr, or is the kombu stock transferred to a pot or something first?

 

I empty the bag into a pot, reserving the spent kombu/konbu (which I then carefully refrigerate till throwing out a few weeks later).  I bring the pot just to a boil, remove from the heat, then add the shaved katsuobushi and strain through cheesecloth into another pot after about thirty seconds.

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Tonjiru (miso soup with pork and vegetables).

This time I made the dashi the traditional way with konbu and katsuobushi rather than using the granules. I did not however shave my own katsuobushi or SV my konbu. I did cut my own carrot flowers and used the recommended mentori "smoothing of angles" on the potatoes.

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Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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How do you make your miso soup, Anna?  I was going to try miso soup tonight since I have leftover konbu and katsuobushi in the refrigerator.  Not to mention miso.  But I threw my back out at work this afternoon, and dinner so far is peanuts and Mississippi punch.  Not very Japanese...or maybe it is these days.

 

The one time I tried to make miso soup it was overly salty and not very good.  We have a local restaurant that offers miso soup (but note they do not dare offer a clear soup on the menu!) and my son reports that their miso soup is pretty good.

 

In theory I should be able to combine the dashi leftovers with some miso and achieve something potable.  Any help would be appreciated.

 

I sure could use a bowl of clear soup right now.

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