Friday, October 9, 2009

Perhaps the most bizarre cooking day yet...

or maybe the title of this post should be "I am schizophrenic"

It all started with making dashi for chawan mushi.


then I remembered that I had starter going for injera for my pretend children next door.


another batch done for the week


Then I start thinking of Gourmet magazine and recipes that I really want to make from the issue that my friend Val gave me. I decided that I am craving "Men's Favorite Salad"


Gourmet Magazine (I love you and will miss you Gourmet!)

Men's Favorite Salad

1 (2 1/2-lb) green cabbage, outer leaves discarded
1 medium onion, halved lengthwise, then thinly sliced crosswise
2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
2 cups 4% cottage cheese (preferably small-curd; 16 oz)
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice, or to taste
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper

Cut cabbage into 2-inch wedges and core, then very thinly slice crosswise. Transfer to a large bowl. Add remaining ingredients and toss to coat. Let stand 15 minutes (or chill up to 2 hours) to allow flavors to meld.

This salad is fantastic and you should make it!

Oh yeah, I took salmon out to grill too. I shoved the salmon in some marinade.

Back to the Chawan Mushi


I even had ginko nuts in a can (not very good when you are use to fresh ones, but they will do)


Made the egg mixture and getting these puppies ready to steam



Yum, they came out perfect


Oh yeah, and just for kicks I made some artichokes


I think I may have mixed a few too many things in this "dinner" but boy was it good!

Chawan Mushi
Japanese Cooking by Jon Spayde

4 medium shrimp, peeled, deveined and split in half lengthwise
1/2 chicken breast boned and cubed
few drops sake
1/4 tsp soy sauce
12 gingko nuts

4 eggs
2 2/3 C dashi (recipe to follow)
1/2 tsp salt
1/8 tsp soysauce
4 tsp ginger

Sprinkle the shrimp with a little salt. Sprinkle the chicken pieces with a little sake and allow them to stand for a moment; then sprinkle the chicken lightly with salt and soysauce. Place one shrimp, some chicken cubes, and three of the gingko nuts in each of the four ramekin dishes or mugs.

Beat the eggs thoroughly and stir in the dashi, salt and soysauce. Pour the mixture over the ingredients in the ramekins.

Cover the ramekins with aluminum foil and place them in a steamer. Bring the water to a boil, then partially cover the steamer and steam over moderate heat for about 10 minutes. The custard should be firm on top. Because of the moisture given off by the various ingredients, chawan mushi will be less firm than Western custard. In fact, this dish is often lassed as a soup.

Sprinkle a little grated ginger on top before eating.

*NOTE I usually use whatever I feel like in this dish. This time I tried some mushrooms and scallions along with the chicken and shrimp. I often leave out the gingko nuts if I can't find them.

4 1/2 C water
1 oz konbu
1 oz dried vonito flakes

Put 4 C cold water into a large saucepan and add 1 oz konbu. Heat the water and just before it boils remove the konbu. Allow the water to come to a full boil, then add 1/4 C cold water to bring the temperature down quickly. Immediately add 1 oz bonito flakes. let the mixtue return to the boil, then boil the flakes for only 2 or 3 seconds; any longer, and the stock will become bitter. Remove from the heat and strain.


  1. I love mixing up unusual recipe mixes to in a meal lol. keeps the guests on their toes! Looks yummy.

  2. I so wanted to try this I looked up Ginko and found this:

    "Ginko nuts can be harvested at this time of year in Boston on the Boston Common of all places (though there is lot's of competition) and in Mt. Auburn Cemetary along the fence on Mt. Auburn Street."

  3. You started at noon for an 8 PM dinner right?

    But it all looks great

  4. the egg custard looks great, so soft and warm.

  5. Janice - I want to know how you are cooking the injera! I have teff flour, but no idea of how to ferment the stuff. Please give up your secrets...

  6. Lisa,
    Come visit and I will teach you. I just did tons of research on it and then played for months until I got it right. It is hard to write it all out. I started with a sourdough (rye) starter and after a month converted it to teff starter. Email me so I have your email address

  7. your youngest make believe son --- looooooooovvved his Injera- (after I picked all of the ceramic shards out of it..laugh).

  8. your youngest make believe son --- looooooooovvved his Injera- (after I picked all of the ceramic shards out of it..laugh).

  9. the egg custard looks great, so soft and warm.