Emi’s okonomiyaki

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Each family of Osaka has its secret recipe of okonomiyaki. This post is pure spying. I am going to reveal you how my friend Emi makes hers. It’s a delicious simple version very rich in eggs. Before you start, make you sure you have tasty farm eggs.

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Then, you need thinly shredded cabbage. She cuts it with her big knife. The flavors are tenkasu (tempura crumbs) and thin slices of pork breast.

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The batter : It’s about a tbs of grated yama imo (Japanese yam), water and flour. Whip.
In a bowl, mix batter, cabbage, some tempura crumbs and an egg.

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To be always ready, Emi has a reserve of servings of grated yama imo in her freezer.

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On the oiled hot plate, first some batter-cabbage mix. Then slices of pork. Then more batter. Then flip.

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Then… Why that ? The goal is to make the surface uneven so the sauces will stay on top.

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Garnishing : the sauces are poured on top and layered with a brush. Then she puts fish flakes.
So the sauce are :
-okonomiyaki sauce (a mix of the thick sauce and of the more liquid Worcester sauce)
-mayonnaise
And in between ?

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Do you recognized ? It’s mustard that gives a spicy tone to the sauces.

So you know all the tricks, you can enjoy it at home too.

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How to handle your yama imo (naga imo, Japanese yam)

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Apparently that’s not obvious when you have not seen it done. So a few photos are better than a long speech.
This veggie nagaimo is slimy and if you peel it it becomes very slippery, and you may get some skin allergy into the bargain. But that’s only after it’s peeled.

You can touch the skin without problems. So with a knife, peel a length of that long potato, or the tip if it’s the round type. Like a pencil, you sharpen it as you need.

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First way.

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Grating the in the traditional way in a suribashi (mortar). and you rub it against the lines of the pottery.

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Second way, with modern graters.

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Now you can prepare tororo, okonomiyaki, negiyaki
It can also be cubed, sliced, etc, eaten raw or cooked.

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Kuromame bean is the new black

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This is a compilation about ideas to cook kuromame (black soy beans). First, you need to boil them, go to the end of this post for instructions.

SIDE DISH

As a side dish for :
kare raisu (Japanese curry)
Korean wind lunch
Rum vanilla apple black beans, in fragrant tortilla

WITH RICE

Rice and beans.

Black rice
Same recipe as seki-han, red rice (red rice), but with kuromame

Salade de riz Méditerranée

BEAN BALLS

A variation to burger or croquette.


Tama (green lemon big bean ball)

Swedish bean balls
Dark green curry with bean balls

OTHERS :

Marron berry chunky terrine (France)

Feijoada with pig trotter (Brazil)

Enfrijoladas frescas (Mexico)

kuromame shiso empanadas

also in :
Japanese garden creamy Winter soup
four bean gumbo
‘lumaca’ soup

SWEET :

Recooked in a syrup of sugar and grated fresh ginger.

Sweetened with syrup of kurozato (black sugar). They are floating with black sesame on top a bowl of sweet potato okayu

PREPARATION OF DRIED BEANS :

Cooking them is quite long, that can take 3 or 4 hours, after soaking them 24 hours. The time is hard to “predict” as it depends on the size of beans and their age (this year’s crop, or older…).

Process :
-Anyway, rinse them and soak them. You can add baking soda or not (I don’t but Japanese water is not harsh).
-Bring them to boil, you use the soaking water or change. In the first case, color will be more vivid. Boil them at least 10 minutes and take away the foam on surface (the toxic substance of beans).
-Continue on low heat, in a crock pot if you want. Beans are cooked when they are soft.
I cook a batch of 250g without any flavoring, and I freeze most in cups (silicone cupcake molds) for further use.

Tip (that I don’t use) : to keep the color, you can add some nails or other iron objects that are rusted.

Japan’s most common recipe is to cook them with sugar (same weight as the beans) added from the soaking water, or from the low heat simmering… or like I do later. The sweet black beans are one item of the New Year good luck dishes. For savory recipes, you can add a piece of kombu seaweed in the water.

Daube de cochon (Provence pork stew, why we say “braisé”)

The daube (Provence’s stew) is more often done with beef, or lamb. Well I made it with pork this time.
Daube de porc. Daube de cochon. Pork Daube.

That’s delicious but the main ingredient is time. You nearly need one week :

Day 1 :
Short ribs of pork as the meat. They are marinated in red wine, with carrots, lots of onions, a bit of orange peel (mikan today), a bouquet garni, a few spices…
24 hours.
Then garlic is added, and tomato.

Day 2, Day 3… After searing the flour coated meat in olive oil, I used the rice-cooker as a crock pot. I did one cycle (2 hours + stay hot about 6 hours). Skimmed the fat after cooling. Another cycle the next day.

ENERGY, WATER, EFFICIENCY

You may know, or not that we live in time of “setsuden” (energy cutting campaign) in Japan. Due to some issues with power plants after the disasters last year, we try to reduce energy consumption. I have an energy-saving induction rice-cooker, so this method is the most ecological for long simmering, compared to stove-top or oven. In old times, in Provence, they were saving differently. The dish was simmered in a daubière, a pot designed for daube. Some models were in copper, but the most traditional was pottery, like this :

daubiere Source (read this article in English) in this English language blog about French culinary history.

Why we say braisé ?

With that you have to “braise” as on high heat the pot would explode… In French, “braise” means “ember”. The origin was to put the pot on embers. The lid of a daubière forms a sort of bowl. And one of my cast iron pots has the same shape because it is a braisière. So, they could place embers on the lid, and that would cook from both directions, bottom and top. Convenient in Winter.
But that’s not so efficient as anyway the heat goes up. The second way is to fill it with cold water. That seems weird ? When you simmer your food, some steam goes up and slowly escapes as the lid is not totally hermetic, even with a good lid, you have condensation. And after a while, your stew dries, so you add more water. Well you need to check, to be here. When you cover the lid with water, the lid stays slightly cooler, the steam hitting the lid instantly gets back into liquid and falls back into your stew : it does not get dry.

Day 4 : reheat and serve.
Day 5-6-7… you can reheat, it only gets better.
Toppings : minced black olives and sage.

Simple sides of boiled veggies are perfect. Okras are not from Provence, but well, I had that. That was a delicious meal.

2 servings of daube and veggies :

Cal : 865 F40.1g C88.9g P41.3g

Guess what I made with leftovers of sauce. Answer here.