Friday, December 26, 2014

Neriage Noodle

I have been dreaming about this technique for a long time. With clay it's fairly simple. You roll out sheets of different colors, make a few layers of each color, one on top of the other. Roll up everything, then cut them into rounds and put all the pieces together side by side and roll out again. The same thing ought to work with pasta dough. And it did. The two doughs are made with juiced beets and juiced broccoli rabe. QUITE the mess. First time I've actually used the beast of a juicer in my house that looks like a rocket engine. The noodles didn't come out so much Father Christmas as King Crimson, but it does look cool. I then cut these strips into noodles and as you can see the color faded a lot. But they are multicolor psychedelic. And I'm hoping they really taste like beet and rabe. So the key to keeping these for a while, since they're just white flour and vegetable juice: precook and then dehydrate in nests. If you just dry them, they are really brittle. Which is of course why semolina replaces regular wheat in commercial dried noodles. At least in Italy. The real question is what kind of soup can I put these in? Crab maybe?

Monday, December 22, 2014

Homemade Instant Ramen

 The machine was calling to me today. So:

Yes, these were freshly made and crank cut semolina noodles, boiled and then dehydrated. That's dehydrated zucchini on the left, dehydrated cured and smoked turkey in the center and turkey stock cooked down to syrup, smeared on a plastic mat and also dehydrated.

I hoping it will all just come back together in boiling water. We shall find out tomorrow.

I'm also thinking of other vegetable ingredients. Carrots and celery definitely. Maybe tomato powder, lime juice, and why not fish sauce? The whole shebang should be dried and truly instant.

Friday, December 19, 2014

Candy Noodle Soup

This came to me in a dream. Noodles made of marzipan. A broth of Mexican chocolate with a little booze for sheen, piped in with a turkey baster. Garnished with sprinkles, candied citron and peppermint bark. It comes together rather well. Sort of tastes like Mozart Kugeln.

Noodle Soup Forward!

A Friend on Facebook called this....

Faux Pho 

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Lamb Broth with Root Vegs and Soba

I particularly liked this one because it breaks down the rigid borders between soup and stew. It's made with a lamb shoulder chop, carrots, parsnips and celery. It was cooked slowly so the broth stayed clear. Then served on soba noodles. So the final effect is exactly the slurpable soup aesthetically, but the flavors say Irish stew, without the potato of course.

I think doing this again I would add some seaweed to further undefine it. The briny flavor really goes well with lamb. Maybe even just some furikake sprinkled on top.

The bowl is another favorite of mine, made years ago, in New York. Super Mud Pottery when I was first apprenticing.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014


I don't think these are supposed to go in soup in the Valtellina, but they are seriously dense earthy buckwheat noodles. They're in a beefy broth with shreds of cabbage, a few mushrooms and then as a nod to their Japanese cousins, just a dab of red miso in the soup. I couldn't resist a little parmigiano before eating. It's really does work.

I'm also guessing that soba noodles would work in the same context, though with more Northern Italian flavors. Maybe even a dash of tomato paste.

I love mixing and matching flavors in noodle soups. New combinations are coming to me every morning.

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Pinking Shears Noodle

I know what you're thinking, but no, the shape is supposed to be cowry shells. How to do it actually came to me in a dream. I saw an image of my dad's pinking shears. He designed clothes in NY's Garment District and had a bevy of frightening sewing tools. The pinking shears were these thick brutish blades made of solid steel with black handles. I tried some craft scissors which weren't strong enough to handle dough. And this morning bought some fiskars and they worked perfectly, cut cleanly, right into boiling water. Here they're in a vegetable broth with some scallions, that's all. Most of them I just froze because I'm coming to realize that making noodles every morning for breakfast is ridiculous. So we'll see how they do in the freezer. Pop out a little container of stock, a ziplock of noodles and some fresh vegetables. Easy peasy. We shall see.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

A Tale of Two Stocks

I amazes me that with very similar ingredients one can make two completely and utterly different stocks. This is an interesting lesson in technique. The first stock here was made with turkey necks and giblets. I roasted them in the oven for a few hours with carrots, onions, celery. Then put everything plus the scrapings from the pan into a small stock pot, barely covered with water, and into the oven for about 16 hours at 275 degrees. I love the way this comes out, really dark with deep flavors and very clear. No fat at all.

The soup shown here is just stock with some shiitake mushrooms thrown in, noodles, of course, and some parsley. It's a super intense turkey flavor and actually with a little more reduction and thickening of flour it made a great gravy. But the bones in the necks didn't create any gelatinous thickening.
This second stock was made with the leftover carcass of the turkey, with wings, skin and a lot of bones, not much meat left. It was boiled for about 6 hours on the stove top with a lot of water in the same pot with carrots, onions, celery, etc. You would think they might turn our similar? This was milky like a bone broth, with a very intense flavor but tasting more like roast turkey than a stock base. And when chilled it solidified completely, so I could take the fat off the top. In the soup it was sticky and mouth-filling, and as you can see cabbage, tomatoes and parsley, similar noodles too. But very murky and thick.

The collagen in the skin here I think made all the difference. I don't prefer one over the other, but am nonetheless surprised that the part of the turkey used and the method of cooking makes such a tremendous difference in the final taste and consistency.