When In Doubt; Ramen

Posted in asian, eggs, japanese, noodles, pork, soup, stock with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 18, 2016 by oskila

I think I might have triggered myself with the last post… Here’s an actual dish. 

Went to seldom visited grocery store. Found soft ramen noodles and big bottle of inexpensive fish sauce. Cogs started turning again. 

Fast forward a few days and found myself without dinner late at night after struggling considerably with putting the child to bed (and falling asleep myself)

A vision of Tonkotsu Ramen noodle soup appeared for my inner vision. Problem is, while it’s street food in Japan, the broth alone takes over 12 hours to prepare and the eggs at least four. So I had to wing it and cheat. 

In a pot I combined finely sliced onion, carrot and ramsons (aka wild garlic), a handful of edamame beans and a small amount of ground up dried mushrooms. A cup of chicken stock followed, seasoned with soy sauce, mirin and fish sauce. 

Broth brought to a simmer I added paper thin slices of brined pork neck that I had set aside while making pulled pork the night before. 

In another pot an egg was boiled for six minutes and then fished out and peeled while the noodles cooked in the same water for two minutes. 

Noodles transferred to bowl, broth poured over, egg sliced and plopped on top (without marinating for four hours), various condiments sprinkled. 

While obviously a weak, adulterated shadow of the real thing, I found this bowl of food incredibly tasty. Further attempts to home in on the original are in pipeline. 

Deserted? No, but distracted

Posted in beer on September 16, 2016 by oskila

If this blog has any followers left they’re probably wondering what’s happened to NerdCuisine. I’m alive and well, but have been distracted from food blogging by the fell beast that is homebrewing. The beer brewing operation did get its own blog. In the future I might be able to keep both a bit more active.

See you soon!


Baconated Dumplings

Posted in asian, cabbage, chinese, condiments, mushroom, pork, sauce, scallion, wheat with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 29, 2015 by oskila

The local grocery store suddenly started selling bamboo steamers, so I decided to try my hand at wonton dumplings, which are commonly steamed.

The dough is easy enough. According to the recipe I looked at, one should combine wheat flour with boiling water to produce a soft dough that doesn’t stick too much.

Traditional wonton filling usually includes pork. I had recently landed a considerable amount of bacon, which is technically pork. Also used were savoy cabbage, spring onions, wood ear mushroom and Chinese five-spice.


The resulting dumplings might not be the prettiest ones you’ve seen, but not too shabby for a rushed first attempt.


While the dumplings steamed away I attempted some kind of sweet and sour sauce based on rice vinegar and canned pineapple without looking too closely at actual recipes.


Dumplings post steam. While they turned out quite nice, it’s entirely possible that I failed with the dough on account of them sticking to the steamer like if glued.


Finished dumplings and sauce along with store-bought tamarind/date sauce that is more of an Indian persuasion than Chinese (but tasty) and a sprinkle of chopped spring onions.

Moose Peposo

Posted in cabbage, discount, italian, moose, stew with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 21, 2015 by oskila

For some reason our local shop has started offering comparatively cheap game meat relatively regularly. This time they sold stewing bits of moose cheaper than beef.

Foodstuffs I don’t normally buy, like game, come with enough sense of occasion to also provoke a blog post, which is why this is the third installment of game meat in a short amount of time. Also, game is a bit more friendly to the environment (if not to the individual moose) than domesticated and factory-farmed meats.

I’ve had my eyes on the classic Tuscan dish Peposo for a few years now, but never actually cooked it. Legend has it the dish was invented by furnace workers who made terra-cotta tiles for the Florence cathedral. Cheap beef cooked in local Chianti wine in terra-cotta pots for hours on end. In other words, high foodie fashion some 500 years later.

It’s always fun when there’s a schism regarding original recipes. Modern recipes contain lots of tomatoes, but the dish would have originated in pre-columbian times, when tomatoes were only found in South America. I decided for something in between – adding a small spoon of tomato paste for deeper umami flavor.

Personally I also wonder about the amount of pepper. As far as I know pepper was very very expensive during the renaissance. Would labourers (albeit skilled) really be able to afford that amount of pepper just for an everyday stew with cheap cuts of beef? Will have to look into that…


The ingredient list is very short: Meat, Chianti, black pepper, garlic (and tomato paste). Peposo isn’t a subtle dish. For a pound of moose I used half a head of garlic, a pint of wine and ten grams of pepper (substituting half the amount for long pepper which has more spicy notes that go well with game). In an embarrassing fit of illiteracy I ground the pepper up instead of using it whole like the recipe I used for reference said. The result was quite hot, but still enjoyable.


Top-left image: Everything combined in cast iron pot and brought to a boil while the oven heats to 150° C. Top-right: Pot after an hour in the oven. Bottom-left: the two hour mark. Bottom-right: Decided to declare dinner after three and a half hours.


According to the interwebs common side dishes for peposo are sautéed spinach and beans. I decided on a slightly more Swedish option and creamed some savoy cabbage. Grilled bread is also an important part of the peposo experience.

Moose peposo smeared on bread, with creamed savoy cabbage and what was left of the wine.

Final thoughts on this moose peposo: The meat was very lean. A fattier cut would probably have done favours for the flavours. To accompany the moose I went for a quite robust type of Chianti. A lighter wine would probably have been better. Even though there seems to be quite a lot of garlic in this dish, it disappeared completely. (might not have done so if the pepper wasn’t ground)

Venison à la Nelson?

Posted in mushroom, potato, scandinavian, stew, vegetables, venison with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 30, 2015 by oskila

Already a new post? It never rains but it pours…

Venison again? Yes. The grocery store offered venison at a discount again, this time cuts best suited for boiling.

À la Nelson? Why? Well, it’s slightly complicated. There’s a classic Swedish dish, the name of which translates to ‘sailor’s beef’. It’s sliced beef, onions and potatoes, stewed in beer. The sailor connection is supposedly that it’s practical to cook everything in one pot on a ship and fresh water isn’t always readily available, hence beer. A bit of googling indicates that there’s an English (or Polish) version that adds mushrooms and trades beer for stock. It’s called Steak à la Nelson. Yes, after lord Nelson, of Trafalgar fame.

I bastardized my recipe further by not only using venison instead of beef, but also wine and stock instead of beer and adding mushrooms and parsnip.

Frying a chopped portabello mushroom.

Searing the meat for a more flavoursome stock.

Thinly sliced potatoes, onions, browned venison and parsnip in a pot, together with mushrooms, various herbs, black pepper, a hint of garlic and a few juniper berries.

Deglaced pan with wine, stock and bayleaf.

After simmering everything for 45-60 minutes it’s not the prettiest of sights, but it’s how it’s supposed to look.

Finished dish along with a dollop of crème fraîche and pickled Hokkaido pumpkin (Many slow-cooked meat dishes in Swedish cuisine are traditionally served with pickled beets. Pumpkin was the least sweet pickle I had in the house. And it’s halloween soon…)

Blog aten’t dead! Four years celebration

Posted in bacon, cheese, vegetables, venison with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on October 26, 2015 by oskila

All this faffing about with having an actual job or staying at home with the sprogget steals valuable time from food blogging. I’m doing my best to stay above surface, but it’s tricky.

As it turns out, the blog turned four last week, which I noticed, but didn’t find time to post about. We’ll have to do with this week instead.

The trusty local food grocer announced ground venison at a discount and while patty isn’t my middle name, I’m drawn to the opportunity like a feegle to scumble. (Read more Pratchett if you didn’t get the reference).

Venison is typically lean meat, so bacon is always a good addition. A side dish of Feta-gratinated beets also made their way into the picture.

Mix venison with an egg, salt, pepper and possibly a ground up juniper berry or two. Shape into patties and wrap in bacon.

Beetroots boiled until soft, then peeled, sliced and put in a dish. Feta sprinkled. Bake until browned or somesuch. Experimentation with garlic, honey, sunflower seeds or the like is encouraged.hjort

Onwards to another year. I’ll stop promising improvement, but one can hope…

Also, new camera!

Hokkaido Pumpkin Soup

Posted in bread, pumpkin, soup, vegan, vegetables with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 14, 2015 by oskila

Today I’ll just post a dish and ignore that I’ve been off the grid since New Years. The local store offered Hokkaido pumpkins – a small pumpkin variety originating in Japan as the name suggests. One somehow followed me home.

1 Hokkaido pumpkin

1 onion

1 carrot

1 pint stock

Dig out the seeds, rinse and prepare for toasting. Chop aforementioned veggies and fry until nice. Add stock and simmer until soft. Blend until purée. Season until awesome (I used garlic, thyme, pink peppercorn and allspice). Eat until satisfied, with toasted seeds sprinkled on top. A dollop of something is probably nice too, as well as bread and cheese.


I hollowed out my pumpkin with a melon baller just for fun and used it as a serving bowl. The sandwich is grilled Camembert on sourdough batarde.

If anything in the post layout is odd it’s because I’m writing this entire post on my phone. A NerdCuisine first I think.

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