Sunday, March 2, 2008

Random Stuff

This is a bunch of random junk from the past week. Sort of a potpourri of posts.

This first picture is to prove that I do eat things other than noodle soup:
Salad (duh), fresh bread from the local Irish bakery, homemade Russian sausage from the local Russian deli, and a batch of lentils in vinaigrette with lentils from the local health food store. Is this what people are referring to when they talk about eating locally produced foods? I dunno but I'd like to give a shoutout to the buxom beauty who helped me out earlier today in the Russian deli. The folks behind the counter didn't really speak English, she saw that I was having some difficulty and she responded by acting as my translator. Thanks! It was appreciated.

I bought these marinated peppers from the local Korean deli. They were sitting with the rest of the panchang. Does anybody know how to make this dish? It's marvelous. Second, what kind of peppers are these? They kinda look like a Japanese shishito pepper but I don't know if the Koreans also use those peppers. They're a bit sweet, nice vegetal green bell pepper flavor, a bit hot, skin's not too thick, slightly mucilaginous seeds. Very munchable. Please help me out!

Weekly baking project went poorly:
Potato flatbreads. See how the outside is cooked but the inside is still underdone? Other than the poor end result, these were fun to make. I like kneading dough...very, VERY stress-relieving especially after a tough midterm. On that side note, if any of you are in college and have the opportunity to take a course in game theory, DO IT. It will change your outlook on least it has for me. Anyhow, the breads were easy...grated potatoes, mashed potatoes, flour, butter, salt and pepper. I'll give it another go in a few weeks...I feel like making something sweet and dessert-y this upcoming weekend.

I also tried to make some Vietnamese glazed duck legs but ran into a few problems. It's a pretty easy recipe...soak duck legs in some rice wine, ginger juice and salt. Steam for 20 minutes. Make a glaze with honey, soy, 5 spice powder etc. Roast the steamed duck legs in a HOT oven to crisp up the skin. Here's where I ran into trouble. As I tried to dip the legs in the glaze, the fresh-from-the-oven legs were so hot that the glaze just ran off of them. I couldn't get the glaze to adhere to the leg. Second, duck legs are kinda tough...lots of connective tissue and all that which is why people usually braise/confit them. The combination of the steam and hot oven didn't really tenderize the meat so trying to pull the meat from the bone was quite a chore. I doubt that I will repeat this technique anytime in the future.


That is all. Have a good one!

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