Month: June 2012

Review: Food Art – Garnishing Made Easy

By John Gargone

2004, Schiffer Publishing Ltd.  ISBN-13: 978-0764319600

I own quite a number of books dealing with the related topics of plating, garnishing and carving foods. This little volume touches on all three aspects of food presentation but, while it is fairly interesting to look through, it is definitely not one of the best in my collection…  Continue reading “Review: Food Art – Garnishing Made Easy”

Experiment: Clams with White Wine and Basil

I have three bags of the Mirabel Brand Frozen Clams I featured in a recent ‘Foodstuffs’ post and I thought I would use a couple to make a nice light meal for me and the wife. The first time I used this product, which was only a few weeks before I started writing this blog, I steamed a bag of the clams in a rich liquor made up of soy, ginger, garlic, sugar and rice wine, along with a small bunch of fresh basil. For this experiment, I wanted to use Basil again (as I still have some which needs to be used up) and I thought I might try something a little more delicate using white wine…  Continue reading “Experiment: Clams with White Wine and Basil”

Experiment: Spicy Roasted Cassava (Yuca Root)

In my ‘Foodstuffs’ post featuring Cassava, I noted that, not only is the vegetable widely used in Latin America (where it originates), it is also very popular in Indonesia. I looked at quite a few recipes when I was trying to decide how to prepare the root I purchased and I finally decided to do a dish that incorporated the cooking methods and seasonings of both regions.

In Indonesia, the vegetable is often boiled with spices and then deep-fried afterwards. I, however, thought it might be nice to boil it first and then roast it, South American fashion, using spices from the Indonesian flavor palette… Continue reading “Experiment: Spicy Roasted Cassava (Yuca Root)”

Foodstuff: Salted Duck Egg (鹹蛋)

Salted duck egg is a Chinese delicacy that is not especially well known amongst westerners. This is a bit of a pity really, because the eggs are really quite tasty and not nearly as alarming in appearance as the other preserved variety known as ‘Thousand year old eggs’. They are, as the name suggests, nothing more than duck eggs that have been preserved with salt, and they can be purchased raw (like the ones in the box you see above), or pre-cooked (as is the one in the plastic wrapping). The cooked ones are the most convenient in that they can be eaten, or added to some dishes right away, but the raw ones are definitely more versatile…  Continue reading “Foodstuff: Salted Duck Egg (鹹蛋)”

Review: Tsukemono – Japanese Pickling Recipes

By Ikuko Hisamatsu

2005, Japan Publications Trading, ISBN-13: 978-4889961812

This publication belongs to the very nice ‘Quick and Easy’ series and is a special favorite of my wife, who enjoys trying many different kinds of pickling methods. The name of the book is just a little bit inaccurate but, in this case, the inaccuracy works to the benefit of the reader rather than otherwise because, in addition to providing a very comprehensive of Japanese pickling methods, some varieties from other parts of the world are featured as well… Continue reading “Review: Tsukemono – Japanese Pickling Recipes”

Recipe: My Mother’s Potato Salad

Recently, when I featured Heinz Salad Cream in a ‘Foodstuffs’ post, I promised that I would share two family recipes that always use this product. The first of these is for a potato salad that I first learned from my mother and have been making myself for many, many years. It is instant ‘comfort food’ for me and couldn’t be simpler to prepare… Continue reading “Recipe: My Mother’s Potato Salad”