Stock, generic recipe (with sous vide pictures)

Warm your home during the cooler days, or fill a pot with the bight, crisp flavors of summer by making homemade stocks. Anything you make from it will be enhanced.  Myself, I enjoy the day long process of tending a near boiling pot, of skimming, of straining and adding then straining again; but the Modernists have popularized two other methods for producing stock faster with less effort: Those made with a pressure cooker and Those made sealed in a plastic bag then cooked in a hot water bath (sous vide). Whatever the… Read More

Vegetable Curry, a book and recipe

vegetable curry

(recipe follows) Several years ago the love of my life, Hiro, gave me an unexpected birthday present: A curry cookbook written in both Japanese and English. Until then I had never made Indian food — curry had just never occurred to me. He didn’t know me that well at the time but mine is the personality that when I do something, I devote myself to it and so I bought every single ingredient in the index from Asafoetida to Yogurt and went to work page by page, which created some friction in our… Read More

Apple Strudel Your Way!

(recipe follows — red text areas are links) I started working with Filo shortly after starting this blog (you might remember some of the teaser posts). I couldn’t bring myself to publish anything I’d written. I was unsatisfied with the pictures I took and unsure how to present filo dough in a way which would peak your interest, especially as an undeserved reputation as being difficult to work with. Filo needs just three ingredients: Flour, fat, water. To that you can add salt for flavor or stevia for sweetness. The principles for… Read More

Savory Pie — Your Way!

This is really very easy to do. You all have the skills, I know you do. It’s just a lot of baby steps leading towards something visually stunning and delicious. You’re going to be layering different fillings in a pastry, sealing it, and baking it. Everything going inside the pastry is already cooked. You’ll simply be baking the shell to meld the flavors. What you put inside is entirely up to you. In traveling through France I’ve eaten several versions three of the layering suggestions I like best are: Sautéed spinach, ham,… Read More

The Onion Sandwich — Caramelized Onions

(recipe follows) People who comment or send me mail tell me I can improve my blog by talking more about my life. From their advice I have been adding bits and bytes. A part of my life story I never speak about is poverty: I grew up poor. After my parents divorced my mother and I were so poor we couldn’t afford a vacuum. My mother borrowed one every couple of months from her half-brother’s wife. (To clean the carpet we used the back side of tape.) We were poorer than most… Read More

Candied oranges

  (recipe follows) Yes, I really do curl up on the sofa reading “gode” “cookery” books or food histories. Two summers ago I spent two weeks in Provonce retracing Julia Child’s footsteps. So, yeah, I’m kinda single these days, but I can apply what I’ve learned from medieval cookbooks to make some of the best candied fruits you’ll ever eat. Candying fruit was something I taught myself through trial and error by following the directions from 16th century manuscripts. Much later I learned the science behind what I was doing and was… Read More

Yeasted Lemon Cakes

I’ve been wanting to post the recipe for this for a while, but I need to reshoot. Trust me when I tell you that yeast deeps the flavor and aromas in cake. The pics are from my older camera. I tried taking pics outside in direct morning sun.

Raw Apple Pie Your Way — Play with your food!

(recipe follows) When I was younger my credo was to try everything at least twice (in case I got it wrong the first time). Keeping an open mind this way, I learned — and shaped — my preferences. With food, over time, I developed a leaning towards the healthful. Even when cooking with butter, or cream, or sugar, or meat in my mind I work through variations. One fairly new approach I’ve been thinking about is raw food. Interestingly, dehydrating foods under 118 degrees Fahrenheit is still considered raw by many which,… Read More

Play with your food! Stuffed chicken.

(technique) The food industry puts too many chemicals in our food, it’s an idea I wholly concur with, which is part of the reason I do almost everything from scratch. There are enzymes and amino acids which have been lumped into  that idea of chemical which Molecular Gastronomists have embraced and which I use regularly in my kitchen. One of my favorite kitchen toys is Activa, aka transglutaminase. Restaurants and supermarket butchers use it to make uniform cuts of meat. Simply take two small pieces, sprinkle the amino acids, and put them… Read More

Orange days — Orange Tart and Candied Oranges

I enjoy making candy, all kinds of candy. But I’ve been eating more and exercising less — soon I’ll be making a change, but for now instead of making my favorite Candied Oranges Dipped in Chocolate, I made an Orange Tart. (I also made Melon Granita and Chocolate Mousse, but if I don’t write about them, they don’t count.) This was just a test. I zested the oranges and boiled them in a sugar syrup to 230 degrees Fahrenheit, cooled them with white rum and laid them in a sweet tart shell… Read More

Apple strudel

Fiesta Friday — food and cameras

Friday is in the future for most of you, but here, across the International Date Line, Friday is at an end and the party begins shortly. I finished my work day at noon and went out for errands and entertainment in Ginza — today’s agenda involves Nikon and meat: I bought a new camera (Nikon D7100) and I picked up some pork and beef. I’ve been doing a lot of test cooking this month, so friends are crowding around my kotatsu tonight to scrutinize my baumkuchen, popcorn (white) chocolate, baklava, stuffed breasts… Read More