Shishito no kushiyaki – A skewer of lion peppers


Take tasty ingredients, do the minimum to showcase them.
These small Japanese peppers, called shishito (lion pepper) have spent the Summer under the sun, and you can smell and taste it. They have an incredible flavor.

I caught them with my spear and grilled them in the oven toaster just 4 minutes. Grrrr…

Disbanded ! I enjoyed them very hot, with shichimi togarashi (7 spice mix).

Spicing up the Chuka standards, mabo tofu and yakisoba

Chuka, is Chinese cuisine in Japan. These 2 dishes are so boringly classic that you always want to make variations.
Beware : it’s hot today ! On the table too.

Momen tofu, cotton tofu. It’s squeezed in cotton. The mark of the fabric is visible. It’s a firm tofu. I just let it on a plate and excess water goes out (it’s possible to add a second plate + something heavy on top).

That’s a new variation of mabo tofu.
-garlic, onions, Chinese miso, chili pepper. Stir-fried.
-plus tomato paste and cooked kabocha skin. Simmered.
-plus a garam masala mix of Indian spices
-plus the water squeezed tofu

It has a Singapore curry taste. That must be the effect of black beans from miso combined with Indian spices.

home-made eggs noodles

A shahan, fried noodles. Very simple : oil, garlic, lettuce, soy sauce. Toppings are negi and shichimi togarashi (7 spice mix) plus a few drops of fragrant sesame oil.
PLUS ichimi togarashi (=pure hot chili flakes).
The truth is I’ve confused the pure chili and the mix.

So, I’ve ended with 2 very spicy dishes. And I’ve love them to the point of licking the chopsticks.

Buon Appetito Meatless Monday

3 minutes to garnish my “buon appetito” table mat. Meatless meals are not a rarity on this blog and not restricted to Mondays. Just click on vegan/vegetarian and you’ll get thousands and this post is not one of the best. So that’s just a thematic.

Just reheated azuki beans, edamame, broccoli, garlic, tomato paste.

That’s all. Sides are hemp bread and cukes.

Kamo namba, so convenient !

This is insanely good. Maybe the best specialty of Osaka.
It’s kamo namba, or kamo namban. It can be served with soba buckwheat noodles or udon white wheat noodles. It can be made as nabe hot pot cooked on the table.

They disagree on the origin of name “namban” means South, and is often used to name dishes from South of Japan. Namba is a town inside Osaka, in the Minami (=South) side. So South of Osaka is more likely. Also, they would cultivate negi leeks in Namba. Well, not recently. And probably they had those ducks (kamo) running around.

Why is that convenient ? I don’t know, but they say here “it’s convenient like duck and negi leeks”. It’s good to have both in one place, you can do that dish.

This type of negi leek is Kujo negi (Kyoto’s 9th avenue negi leek). Surely there too they were cultivating leeks. Not sure they still do behind the big buildings now, not even sure they don’t… I’ll tell you why another day.

The particularity is the greens are very sweet and can be eaten raw without tearing apart your mouth.

The whites need being seared without fat, just a few minutes.

Kamo is duck. This not classic duck… well, it is organic, it looked good and it is “chick”, they say.

Sear it without fat, like the negi whites. Duck is good rare. Even if you disagree, roast it a little less than you want as it keeps cooking in the broth.

Boil the udon. Make 6 cups of dashi (with dry fish and kombu), flavor it with soy sauce (about 3 tbs of dark type) and mirin (2 to 4 tbs), bring to a boil. Add salt if you need. Combine the udon, the meat and negi, pour the broth.

How to make quick dashi

Add a little shichimi togarashi (7 spice mix). And enjoy. The chick is delicious, the veggie tender, this is wonderful.

Cal 529.2 F12.8g C65.6g P34.3g

Kaki-age tendon, a fried twist on rice and veggies

The shutter opens on tempura and sauce on a bowl of rice. It is a popular Gourmande eat-out. I’m afraid that it “was”. I mean that’s the first time I make mine, and I love it so much more that those they serve… Well some shops make it good, but not at my ideal serving size (smaller), nor on brown rice. Few make their sauce and it’s often too salty.

Let’s explain kaki-age tendon .
Take tempura, a style of Japanese battered fried veggies and seafood, and domburi (a big bowl of rice), and you obtain 天丼 tendon. It means “paradise bowl”… or it’s a short for tempura-domburi. You choose the one you like.

And this is kaki-age. It’s a mix of julienned veggies and sometimes a few small pieces of seafood, made in a hand-full size amount, and fried as tempura.

Here it contains : sweet potato, onion, negi leeks and a few bits of kabocha.
It’s a vegetarian version (not vegan, there is egg in batter).

I made a few a while ago, on a big tempura day, and I stocked in the freezer. They defrost perfectly, I put one 10 minutes at 120 degrees C, then 2 minutes a 160 degree C in the oven-toaster.

On rice (brown for me). Hello domburi !

Sauce, home-made… home-mixed.

Shichimi-togarashi (7 spice mix), sesame.

Let’s have the teishoku (proposed menu).

Sakekasu soup, kabocha, mushroom.

Daikon radish. It is often served with fried food as it favors their digestion.