Friday, January 26, 2018

Carob Noodle Soup

I found a cheery carob tree on the walk home from work the other day. I jumped to get a few pods, ground them up finely and made these very subtly sweet extruded noodles with them. I'm not sure why people always gravitate toward sweets with carob, thinking the flavor is like chocolate, it really isn't. In any case, matching with other ingredients was a challenge. In the end I went with a vegetable broth, a few bits of leftover seafood from a Thai salad and other vegetables. Really pleasantly sweet in a vegetative way.

I bet this would go really nicely with pork too, and chilies. I think you can buy carob flour commercially, in which case mix about half a cup with about half the volume of flour and an egg for one serving.

And of course be sure to check out my new book NOODLE SOUP

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Fermented Akara BLT

About a week ago I was walking downtown (Stockton) and found a Caribbean/West African grocery on Harding. I've seen it before but I'd never been down here on foot. Stopped in and found akara flour. I'd made them before from black eyed peas, and they made it into either my beans book or pancake. But I'd never made them from flour. I mixed up a batch, fried in palm oil. My son and I said, eh, ok. Even with peanut sauce. SO I left the batter on the counter to ferment for about 5 or 6 days. Beautifully sour. Fried up a batch today, like little pancakes in a pan. Then what to do with them? Japanese was my first thought, since a fermented bean should go wonderfully with fish. But then it hit me. A proper BLT. It is SO nice with the sour bean fritter. What a slider!

Sunday, November 26, 2017

Ham-Bushi or David Chang's Pork Katsuobushi Revisited

So while in Japan discovering katsuobushi, I thought, why don't people do this with pork. Of course David Chang beat me to it. But then I went and read the article (easily found online) and thought, why did they start the mold immediately? And why use koji mold? I thought it would work much better with a kind of ham. So I got two pork loins, cured with salt. sugar, instacure #1, sage and pepper, for a week in the fridge. Then cold smoked about 3 hours over oak. Then dehydrated a full week in an electric dehydrator. Shaved on the kezuriki and dropped into water at the boiling point, removed from the heat, for 5 minutes, with kombu. The result is amazingly like dashi, with the same huge mouthfeel and aftertaste. Smoky, but beautifully clear. I may just have to write a paper about this one! Maybe serve with pulled noodles, greens and a pork meatball I think.

Monday, November 20, 2017

Homemade Katsuobushi

4 Pieces from each fish

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Pulled Cuttlefish Ink Noodle

I don't think I've ever heard of anyone making a pulled noodle with cuttlefish ink, but it worked nicely. Bread flour, one egg, two small packets of cuttlefish ink and water to make a stiff dough. Kneaded half an hour or so, rolled out, oiled and cut into thick strips, rested for 5 hours. Then pulled and as you can see stuck to the counter top on the ends so they didn't spring back. Normally I throw them right in the water, but I wanted to dry these. I think they're stunning.

So how to cook them? I think in a roasting pan, they're about 6 feet long! Then maybe serve in dashi stock with mentaiko. We'll see.