Archive for the lotus root Category

Exploring Udon and Dashi

Posted in asian, condiments, crossover, japanese, lotus root, mushroom, noodles, peppers, soup, stock, vegetarian with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 3, 2013 by oskila

Raided the recently mentioned Asian grocery store again, and came home with five different kinds of noodles, frozen okra, some instant dashi granules and ssamjang. Since noodles obviously are one of my favorite kinds of food I thought I’d make some.

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Leek, dashi, mushrooms, red chili pepper, carrot, garlic sprouts, ssamjang, udon noodles and lotus roots. Since udon noodles are commonly served in soup that’s what I’m going to do. Ingredient-wise this dish has roots in Japan, Korea and probably China too, so I’m ending up with a general Asian concoction again. This doesn’t really bother me, since the main objective is to simply make tasty food.

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Noodles boiling away. I put them in a sauté pan only in order to be able to put them in whole. Most of my other pots except the really huge ones aren’t wide enough to do that. Save a pint or so of the water after the noodles are cooked, in order to save time and power when making the broth.

For some reason I forgot to take pictures of the broth, but on the other hand it wasn’t very visually enticing. Simply put the hot liquid back in the pan on the hob and sprinkle instant dashi in it to taste. Season with soy and vinegar (ideally rice vinegar, but I used white wine vinegar and a hint of sugar.)

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Meanwhile, the vegetables are jumbled together in another sauté pan. I only used a bit of the green part of the leek and sliced the carrot with the help of a vegetable peeler. Since the lotus root slices were still frozen I simply microwaved them along with a spoonful of water for some time instead and then chopped them up a bit.

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To assemble dish, simply scoop noodles into bowl with vegetables on top and then pour dashi broth over the whole thing. I topped with a dollop of ssamjang and black and white sesame seeds for additional tastiness.

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Surely this isn’t what they meant by ‘fusion cooking’?

Posted in asian, cabbage, crossover, lotus root, mushroom, noodles, sausage with tags , , , , , , , , , , on February 8, 2013 by oskila

I went to a new Asian food store the other day. It’s been there for years, but in the past they’ve mostly seemed to sell silly kitschy stuff. This time I looked closer and found that they had a wide selection of interesting foods, such as very small frozen crabs, fresh pak choi and hundreds of different instant noodles. I managed to tear away with only a bag of instant rice noodles, some frozen lotus root and a small quantity of enoki mushrooms. To get a break from the bacon I decided to combine those with another commonly reoccurring  proteins – sausages.

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Many, but not all of the ingredients; Enoki, green chili, onion, rice noodles, savoy cabbage, frozen lotus root and frozen sausages. While planning the post I had someone comment that it ‘sounds like something someone would cook if they were staying at a Vegan’s house and only brought sausages ‘, which is probably both right and wrong.

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First, soften cabbage and lotus for a little while. If only fried and not parboiled, savoy cabbage takes some effort to digest in my opinion. Half a cube of veggie stock too.

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Fish cabbage and root out and drop the noodles in. This particular brand had no less than four bags of seasoning included, one of which was dried vegetables – a nice addition.

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I heated a pan and dropped the onions and chili in first, then lotus root, cabbage and sausages. After a while the noodles were added (as usual, save the broth!) and enoki for last. I seriously doubt this is the best way to use enoki mushrooms, but at least now I’ve tried and they still look cool. Apart from chili and broth, the only seasoning I added was a splash of Japanese soy and a hint of white pepper/allspice/ginger mix.

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A small helping just to taste it – the rest goes in the lunch box.

Winter Wok

Posted in asian, crossover, lotus root, meatballs, mushroom, noodles, snow peas, vegetables with tags , on December 5, 2012 by oskila

I STILL don’t really have time to mind the food blog, but sometimes you can’t help but do it anyway. This is another installment of ‘do Asian stuff to prefab Swedish meatballs’. I’ll be using the same flat wheat noodles, the same Sichuan pepper and the same old meatballs, but a new blend of vegetables.

I usually avoid frozen vegetables in my blog food (unless it’s peas) because most of the stuff is readily available fresh anyway, but some of the stuff in this bag, like jelly ear mushroom, lotus root and garlic sprouts are hard to find. There’s also leaf spinach, leeks, snow peas, pumpkin seeds and broccoli in there.

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First, some spices. I’m a bit less happy about Sichuan pepper now than when I first used it, since getting all the seeds out of the pods is rather fiddly, and leaving them in gives the dish a lot of gritty little surprises. Also, chili flakes, star anise seeds (the three large seeds) and a mix called ‘minced meat seasoning’ which is white pepper, allspice and ginger. One can toast this a bit, put the pestle to it or leave as is.

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Noodles, boiling in vegetable bouillon with star anise husks.

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Frozen veg goes into piping hot pan. One of the reasons that I seldom use frozen vegetables for stir frying is that the freezing does structural damage, so that regardless of how quick and careful the cooking is, some sogginess is inevitable. Spices go in too.

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Meatballs, cut in half goes in for some time, before adding the now cooked noodles.

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Liquids vigorously reduced, with a bit of Worcestershire sauce and a pinch of sugar added. Thickened with arrowroot (other types of starch are probably fine too) before pouring it into the bowl.

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Nothing like a warming wok when the cold and snow sets in.

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