Wednesday, October 3, 2018

Koshihikari Rice

Last night I decided to make a batch of Japanese koshihikari rice. I paired it with stir fried duck breast (with the skin on!) marinated in soy, ginger, maple syrup and sake. Included green chilies, bok choy and cashews, very tasty. But even more interesting was the leftover rice for breakfast made into congee with lobster stock, tomatoes, peanuts, cured salmon, crunchy peas, wedges of sweet potato and some shiso flakes. A lot of New World ingredients in there. Just happened to be what I had around. Was surprisingly harmonious.

Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Walking with Wine 500 Days

On Labor Day I realized that it has been 500 days since I started walking with wine. I'm still not certain why I started doing this or recording it with a fitbit. Is there such a thing as a later life crisis? I'm not sure why but working isn't much fun anymore. The classroom still is, and writing when I get to do it. But it seems I spend more and more time on nonsense,  moving things from one place to another, rearranging, repeating things I did ages ago. Walking is definitely more rewarding.

This is my personal record, marathon in distance. That's 26.219 miles. Took me over 9 hours, with a break for a salad toward the end. It was also blazing hot in the afternoon. I went through a big can of fizzy wine in the last hour or so, which was enough. Most of it was pretty grim in terms of landscape, up Pacific Avenue from its southern extremity to its tip, then up beyond Hammer Lane, up Lower Sac then across various creeks and sloughs toward Davis, Thornton, under I-5 and up to the mall on Eight Mile Road. A hard seltzer from World Market was very nice. And of course I filled my water bottle several times along the way. Only one point, at the very tip of the city at the end of El Dorado seemed bucolic. Otherwise a thoroughly urban walk in Stockton, CA. Not nearly as nice as the one a few days before downtown and to the Rural Cemetery. But sometimes you just need to walk. In no particular direction. For reasons that are totally elusive.

For the record, I did 104 miles since last Monday. And walking total is 4,739.86 miles. About 9 and a half a day on average.

UPDATE: October 3, 2018 I hit 5,000 miles!

Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Renaissance Capirotada



You might know the Mexican version of this dish, but in medieval Spanish and here French versions it was more like a sandwich in soup. The combination of cinnamon, ginger and sugar compliments it very nicely. And I took the liberty of adding a fried egg rather than egg yolk rounds. It's quite delicious. The translation is from Livre fort excellent de cuisine tr. by me and Tim Tomasik.

Monday, July 30, 2018

Rice Noodles from Scratch Video

https://www.facebook.com/ken.albala/videos/10156202868801971/?notif_id=1532995264214387&notif_t=feedback_reaction_generic

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Cornish Pasties for the First Time

This was honestly the first time I've ever tried to make pasties. It was prompted partly by a recent trip to Britain, but moreso after having seen beef tallow, perhaps the same as suet, in my local grocery store. A few years ago I asked for it there and got a look like I was from Mars. The world has caught up. So you need to make a hot water crust, which is about half a cup of water and half a cup of fat, brought to the boil. I used about 2 cups of Italian pastry flour (whole wheat) and salt. You need to eyeball this, there is no exact measurement, pour in the liquid until it comes together as a dough. The filling is raw. One pound of short ribs cut off the bone and into tiny cubes. Then rutabaga the same size, onion ditto and a potato likewise. I had a lot of the vegetable filling leftover which went into a frittata. That's it. And it made 4 big pasties. A round folded over filling and pleated along the upper seam. Brushed with whole egg and baked about an hour or more at 350 degrees. And it really was fantastic.

Friday, April 20, 2018

Sea Bass Ceviche Noodle Soup

This Noodle Soup was quite lovely. Sea Bass stained with Campari, red onion, jalapeno, avocado, tomato, sumo orange slices, cilantro all awash in Tiger's Milk. With Home made rice noodles. Not in my Noodle Soup Book, but there are similar ones there to check out.

Friday, January 26, 2018

Carob Noodle Soup

I found a cheery carob tree on the walk home from work the other day. I jumped to get a few pods, ground them up finely and made these very subtly sweet extruded noodles with them. I'm not sure why people always gravitate toward sweets with carob, thinking the flavor is like chocolate, it really isn't. In any case, matching with other ingredients was a challenge. In the end I went with a vegetable broth, a few bits of leftover seafood from a Thai salad and other vegetables. Really pleasantly sweet in a vegetative way.

I bet this would go really nicely with pork too, and chilies. I think you can buy carob flour commercially, in which case mix about half a cup with about half the volume of flour and an egg for one serving.

And of course be sure to check out my new book NOODLE SOUP

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Fermented Akara BLT

About a week ago I was walking downtown (Stockton) and found a Caribbean/West African grocery on Harding. I've seen it before but I'd never been down here on foot. Stopped in and found akara flour. I'd made them before from black eyed peas, and they made it into either my beans book or pancake. But I'd never made them from flour. I mixed up a batch, fried in palm oil. My son and I said, eh, ok. Even with peanut sauce. SO I left the batter on the counter to ferment for about 5 or 6 days. Beautifully sour. Fried up a batch today, like little pancakes in a pan. Then what to do with them? Japanese was my first thought, since a fermented bean should go wonderfully with fish. But then it hit me. A proper BLT. It is SO nice with the sour bean fritter. What a slider!