Sunday, August 12, 2007

Turning Japanese


maki
Wanting to refresh our palates, and because we had some nice tuna in the fridge we decided to prepare a Japanese dinner.

So. Tuna sashimi. Some simple maki would be nice, I thought. I wanted to make some gunkan-maki (battleship rolls), maybe topped with that tobiko (salmon roe) I still had in the freezer. I was all out of kikkoman though, and nori (dried and pressed sheets of seaweed). Wasabi, too.

Off to the supermarket...


Read the rest of this post...Got up early this morning (early for a Sunday anyway) to cook a batch of pasta to deliver to the music team at VCF. Again drawing only on existing stock I came up with a Tomato & Eggplant Agrodolce. Grilled the veg: tomato to provide the agro (sour), and onion for the dolce (sweet). Poached garlic chips in olive oil, tossed it all together with some spaghetti and a little balsamic vinegar, and topped it all with Parmesan and Romano.

While serving that up I was already discussing dinner with Sarah, and with Mama (via text). Wanting to refresh our palates, and because we had some nice tuna in the fridge we decided to prepare a Japanese dinner.

So. Tuna sashimi. Some simple maki would be nice, I thought. I wanted to make some gunkan-maki (battleship rolls), maybe topped with that tobiko (salmon roe) I still had in the freezer. I was all out of kikkoman though, and nori (dried and pressed sheets of seaweed). Wasabi, too.

Off to Circle-C, our friendly neighborhood mini-mall which houses a Robinson's Supermarket. Smaller & not as well-stocked as nearby Cherry Foodarama, Robinson's nevertheless carries a few items Cherry does not, like dried konbu, (edible kelp for making sushi rice). Also on the menu was kani salad, and vegetable tempura. I had a mind to serve crêpes samurai (sweet crêpes with mango, custard & meringue filling) for dessert, almost as a culinary pun but it's past mango season, and prices are prohibitive (P65-P85 per kg!!). Stubbornly bought some anyway, but they were too sour for dessert. Other stuff on my grocery list: shoyu (kikkoman); imitation-wasabi-in-a-tube; lettuce & cucumbers for the kani salad; veggies for the tempura--okra, onions, green bell pepper (still had carrots in the fridge); fresh ginger root; spinach; oyster mushrooms (still had dried shiitakes in the pantry).

Prep was a quickie: cooked rice, washed, chopped & steamed veggies, reconstituted shiitakes, almost forgot to remove konbu from the rice at the boil (would've made the rice slimy), had Sarah shred the cucumber (she's getting pretty handy with my chef's knife), made the tempura batter, fried the tempura (crusted the mushrooms with sesame seeds for interest), assembled kani salad, sliced the tuna (wished I had a santoku instead of the un-chilled boning knife I was using hehehe!). Ran out of time for the gunkan-maki, rolled regular maki at the table instead. Dinner served!

Half an hour later we were rubbing our full, happy bellies. No space for the nonexistent crepes samurai hehe.

maki

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3 Comments:

Anonymous Mi said...

*packs up and moves in the Cada residence*

6:23 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

can u pls tell me how to make kani salad? plus the dressing... plsss

8:58 AM  
Blogger JB said...

Hi! Kani salad is super simple!

You'll need:
-iceberg lettuce
-1 cucumber
-kani (crab sticks) available at any grocery store
-tobiko (flying fish roe) a bit pricey but readily available at supermarkets
-Japanese mayonnaise
-some serious knife skills

Make a bed of the lettuce in the bottom of your serving bowl. Very finely julienne the cucumber. It's up to you if you want to peel it or not (wash it well, please!) I like to partially peel it as the green gives the salad some nice color contrast. Shred the kani sticks with your hands. Top with the mayo and some tobiko. That's it!

It's important to keep all ingredients chilled. It's best to prep the salad shortly before serving. If you have to, prep the vegetables and kani but don't put the mayonnaise and tobiko on until serving time.

A note on the mayo: if you unscrew the red cap you'll find the squeeze bottle has a built in star tip so you can pipe the mayo in a decorative manner. Enjoy!

11:54 PM  

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