Friday, March 27, 2009

Hot buttered rum (p. 61), Poached eggs (p. 196), and Japanese noodles in broth (p. 333)

We got a LOT of snow. The picture doesn't even show the beginnings of all the snow we got--that stool in the yard is at least two feet tall. Doesn't Mother Nature know it's almost April?

I thought, what a terrific day for Hot buttered rum (p. 61)! The first step is to spoon a teaspoon of powdered sugar into a warmed mug (I warmed the mug in the microwave).

Two ounces of boiling water, two ounces of rum, and a tablespoon butter were added to the cup.

And then it was filled with boiling water.

It was warm, which was nice on a cold day, but I thought it was too watery. I must like my cocktails more stout! It was my first buttered rum though--maybe there is a trick to making it.

I've been trying to cook through the Randomized List as quickly as I can (because I want to make a new list) and I noticed that Poached eggs (p. 196) were one of my choices. It seemed easy, so I decided to knock the recipe out for a late lunch. I had never poached an egg before and was nervous about the process--I'm actually not sure I had even eaten a poached egg before.

The recipe calls for a few inches of water, brought to a roiling boil, with a little vinegar and salt added.

The egg was cracked into a bowl and slowly slid into the water:

Eventually the whites started looking done. I don't really care for eggs, but if I'm going to eat them, I like the yolks a little runny. Josh doesn't so I cooked his longer.

I ate my poached egg on some toast.

It was good! I was nervous poaching the egg but it wasn't that difficult. It's a good thing it went well--poached eggs are involved in about 25 more recipes in TJOC.

As I mentioned above, I am trying to hurry through the randomized list. One of the pages included a bunch of Japanese soups so I decided to make Japanese noodles in broth (p. 333).

I'm not a huge fan of udon. I ate very little udon during my months in Tokyo partially because I find it difficult to eat (without slurping, which I can't do even if it is culturally acceptable). I also could never get close to finishing the trough of soup that usually got served to me--I would stuff myself and only finish half the bowl of udon (very similar situations also happened with ramen and any other Japanese noodle served in bowls). But I had a bunch of homemade stock so it seemed like the perfect time.

What is udon, you ask? A flat wheat noodle that is typically eaten in broth. They are usually in the Asian food section of the grocery store (if you've never noticed them, they are probably there, just look next time).

The recipe is easy. I combined eight cups of chicken stock with some soy sauce, sugar, and salt until it boiled.

The udon noodles were cooked while the broth was heating up. The wrapper said only to cook them for one minute. One minute! They cooked really fast, like fresh pasta. Even so, I think they could have stood another 30 seconds of cooking.

The cooked noodles are divided into individual bowls, sprinkled with scallions, and topped with seasoned broth.

You can admire Josh's new soup bowl:

The soup was pretty good but not particularly similar to anything I ate in Japan. It was a little boring. Five- or seven-spice powder is recommended as a complement. Make sure you like a kinda sweet, desserty taste to your noodles if you use five-spice as the five spices are (typically) cinnamon or cassia, cloves, fennel, anise, and some sort of pepper. I personally am not a fan :)


  1. I don't like Oriental 5 spice either. Oh, and congrats on your prelim-passing- thank goodness you can now get back to where, as Josh's little woman, you belong: the kitchen. :)


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