Spring festival : here is the roll…

Spring chrysanthemum Spring rolls !

Still celebrating the Lunar New Year with food… Well this week is really busy, with also Carnival and Valentine. But this food is lighter and refreshing.

Let’s prepare the ingredients :

Rice paper.

Shungiku (young chrysanthemum greens), carrot, shrimps (boiled), onion (blanched).

Ground sesame.

Bean sprouts (blanched).

The dip : sweet chili sauce, rice vinegar and sesame.

It’s complete.

Let’s roll them…

3 simple sushi

A sushi lunch. Whole and basic.

The rice is genmai (brown rice), simply flavored. This first is a makizushi filled with goya bitter squash, wrapped in nori.

Ginnan (ginkgo nut) and natto.

They are the fruits of ginkgo tree, that I always mispell. They are gathered and cleaned Autumn (the outer part stinks, really).

I broke the shell, took it away, boiled the nuts and took out the little skin. It’s also possible to slightly break the shell and then roast them. They have to be eaten in small amounts to avoid toxicity. Well 4 is OK.

Natto sesame. It’s an uramaki, with the rice rolled around.

With wasabi and pickled ginger. Soy sauce too. Served with sencha green tea.

Japanese New-Year count down (-8)

Namasu (raw salad) takes New-Year colors for the Osechi meal…

紅白なます, kohaku namasu is a standard of Osechi Ryori, simply because it is red (ko) and white (haku). The red and white association of color is considered auspicious for New Year in many Asian countries….

Read more

Chima sanchu. About shapes of leaves…

Korean chima sanchu lettuce, and mitsuba (3-leaf).

And chick peas. What relation ? Oh, this :

This salad is always present with yakiniku (local version of Korean barbecue). It’s sanchu, chima sanchu for the erudite. Probably and respectively *lettuce* and *chrysanthemum lettuce* in Korean. Some say sanche. Depends on how you want to mispronounce your Korean…

Oh it’s a lettuce. No special taste. It is conveniently long-leafed to allow you to make a food wrap. Oak leaf lettuce and romaine can do the trick too.

Mitsuba is a Japanese herb. Not parsley, not coriander. Light and present. You often see it on miso soup.

Boiled chick peas, reheated with tomato paste, a little kochujang, garlic, ginger, stalks of mitsuba… and a good splash of rice vinegar at the end.

Recipe :

Boiled chick peas :
I think they are much better than canned ones. I find there is an aftertaste of can. Then the cans are “garbanzo”, big variety, which are used for Spanish stews, and I prefer the proper Middle East chick pea.
Wash dry chick peas and let them soak in water, about 4 times the volume of peas, during 6 hours at least (overnight is OK). Bring the peas and water to a boil. Take away the foam. Cover. Let boil slowly till peas are tender (check every 10 minutes after 30 minutes). I usually prepare a big batch and I freeze some in silicone muffin molds. Then I have ready to use portions of peas that can be thawed quickly in the microwave, due to their small round shape. I also let a few freeze on a tray, so they stay apart and I can take a few to garnish a dish.

Red peas
Take 2 cups of cooked peas with their broth. Add 1 tbs of gochujang, about 2 tbs of tomato paste. Grate a little fresh garlic and fresh ginger. Reheat slowly. Add the cut stalks of mitsuba. I found the taste was too “sweet” and “dull” at that point, so I have poured about 3 tbs of Chinese black vinegar.
Serve with lettuce to wrap, and milled/pounded sesame seeds.

Bring the leaves.

Peas on sanchu, with mitsuba leaves and ground black sesame.

Roll around.

Poteto sarada…

The Daring Cook Challenge this month is HEALTHY POTATO SALADS FROM AROUND THE WORLD!

Jami Sorrento was our June Daring Cooks hostess and she chose to challenge us to celebrate the humble spud by making a delicious and healthy potato salad. The Daring Cooks Potato Salad Challenge was sponsored by the nice people at the United States Potato Board. The USPB organizes a recipe competition but I don’t participate.
See the other bloggers’ many original salads here.

Why would I cook something not healthy ? All my salads are healthy. I made 3, but not on the same day. On different weeks.

The 2 other posts are :

petit aïoli with new potatoes and Spring veggies (France)
pari pari crispy potato salad with pickled cherry dressing (Japan + France)

Here is “typical” Japanese style potato salad.

It looks very creamy because the potatoes are mashed into a sauce. The amount of sauce is quite reduced.

With starchy steamed potatoes.

Japanese mayonnaise. Nothing special, salt, egg yolk, canola oil, rice vinegar to make it very liquid. They buy it… most of the time. I make mine.

Mustard (or dry grains).

What you have in stock.

Mash the potato with a fork, add the mayonnaise, more vinegar, mustard… at your taste. Add in the other ingredients to this puree.