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Posts Tagged ‘mushrooms’

After a not so long, yet tiring day of walking around Kamakura and visiting the shrines and statues we came back home to the best meal I had in Tokyo so far. Sukiyaki is made by placing cast iron pot in the center of the table. Into the pot goes some fat…

as it renders you add some onions…

sake, sugar, soy sauce and some water.

The broth is now ready and we can start adding in the goods; tofu, shiitake, enokitake, greens, potato noodles, scallions and beef. Cook it all together and as you pick your food out of the pot you dip it in raw egg then eat it. It is so good!

I want to eat skuyaki everyday!!!!

As food come out of the pot and into our stomach fresh food goes into the broth, more and more and more until you think you are done, then, a little more and we are done.

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Chinatown’s pharmacies always fascinated me, yet very rarely I would actually step into one and explore. Today I had to pick up my bi-weekly supply of Chinese herb and so I got to hang out in the store and soak up some of its magic.
One step into Kamwo pharmacy and you are in a totally different world, on the counter are 7 pieces of paper and on each  various herb, flowers, tree shavings and other dried up wonders. All are stored in the hundreds of drawers behind the pharmacist and are being carefully measured by hand, using weights and a scale.


In 2 gallon jars around the room are more dried up berries and mushrooms, different roots and probably some animal parts, alongside the large variety of teas.

The idea that there is a whole completely different approach to medicine and healing, an entire system that analyze our body’s energies and connect every illness and ache to imbalances in our organs, diet, environment and our emotions is captivating, and the more I know the stronger I feel about accepting this idea and learning more about it.

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Yesterday Aoife and I decided on a trade, she will make me a very needed cake/pie serving dish and I, in return, will make her pies. Sweet and savory pies. First pie to be exchanged: leek, goat cheese and mushrooms (with a little bit of sun-chokes).
I bought a beautiful Leek at the coop a few days ago that has been begging to be cooked, and so as soon as I got up I started working on it. Tart dough is simple to make and it is by far more rewarding then buying a frozen pre-made crust.
The fun thing about baking pies is that you don’t have to be so accurate, often when baking there is not much room for making up stuff as you go. With pies, however, I find that I have a lot more room to play with quantities and ingredients and that is exactly how I like to cook. I actually had some sun-chokes that needed to be used and so I peeled them, sliced them, cooked them in some milk and stuffed them in the bottom of the tart.

Stay tuned for more pie recipes over the next few weeks, and feel free to suggest ideas for pies I should make for the clay master and her chef lover.

Dough ingredients:

  • 2 cups All purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup cold butter, cut to cubes
  • 6 tablespoons ice cold water

Mix flour and salt in a bowl, add butter and mix until the butter pieces are pea-size. Add the water, one tablespoon at a time and mix with your fingertips. Do not over work the dough or it will become hard.
Wrap in plastic and let rest in the fridge for 15 minutes.

Make the filling:

  • 3lbs leek, white part, thinly sliced
  • 15-20 mixed mushrooms, cremini, oyster, shiitake, brushed cleaned and chopped coarsely
  • 3 tablespoon butter
  • 2 tablespoon fresh thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 3 oz goat cheese
  • 3 oz creme fraiche
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock

* if you want to use potatoes or sun-chokes as well, peel and slice them and then cook in milk or cream for about 20 minutes until soft.

In a frying pan melt the butter and add the leek. Cook until leek is translucent, about 5 minutes, add thyme, bay leaf, 1/2 the salt, 1/2 the pepper and the chicken stock. Cover and cook for 15 minutes. Make sure not to brown the leeks.
Uncover and cook for about 15 more minutes until all juices are almost gone.
In a separate pan melt the remaining butter and add the mushrooms and, salt and pepper. Cook for about 10 minutes until the mushrooms have released their juices.
Place the leeks in a bowl, discard the nay leaf and mix in goat cheese and creme fraiche.

On a floured surface roll out the dough. Butter a 9″ pie pan and line with rolled dough, fill with the leek mixture and bake for 15-20 minutes until the crust and leeks are starting to turn golden. Place mushrooms on top and bake for 10-15 minutes more.
Place on a wire rack and let cool for 10-15 minutes.
Serve warm.

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