Welcome Lunch!  ようこそランチ!

My church in Tokyo, Tokyo Baptist Church is planning to start a new thing to welcome new guests. It's a bit intimidating to go to such a "big" church so this is a way for newcomers to get to know other newcomers and some other church members over a light meal.

僕の東京にある教会はお客さんのために新しいサービスを始まります。大きい教会に初めて行くことは緊迫{きんぱく}した状況{じょうきょう}だと思うから、新顔{しんがお}とほかの新顔と教会の人々は一緒に食べて話せます。

I'm excited. I can try out my cooking on people who have no idea who I am. Not only that but people from a variety of countries and backgrounds. Maybe I'll be able to meet someone who would give me a job.(^-^)

楽しみ。関係なくて知らない人々に僕の料理をします。その上にその人達はいろいろな国から来てバックグラウンドがあります。もしかして僕に仕事を上げることが出来る人合えるかな。ハハハ。

Gotta try me best.

頑張る。

I'll just be cooking sometimes, other times another group will be cooking.

時々料理をして時々他の人は作ります。

For the first meal, currently I'm thinking of something I made in cooking school, Salade Nicoise. From Wikipedia, it seems Pan-bagnat is a sandwich version of Salade Nicoise that's served in Nice. I don't like the idea of soggy bread so much so I think I'll just put some slices of french bread with a lemon-thyme butter on the side. The lemon will go well with the lemon vinegrette of the salad and the thyme will match the garlic and thyme I'll be using with tuna.

最初のは料理学校で作った物をすると思います。ニース風サラダと言うサラダです。パン・バンヤと言うサンドはフランスパンにニース風サラダを入れたサンドです。このサンドはニースのクラシックなサンドです。

しかしジメジメしたサンドはあまり好きじゃないから、僕は別にフランスパンとレモン・タイム・バタをおくと思います。バタのレモンの味はレモンのドレッシングに合ってバタのタイムの味はにんにくとタイム使ったまぐろに合う。

In class, we used a salamander to brown the surface of the tuna but when I made the same dish at home, I seared the tuna in a pan. (Unfortunately, I don't have a salamander at home.) I think it tasted a lot better. The メイラード反応はもっと。。。advanced and intense(日本語で何と言いたらいいですか?)。

I'm not 100% fixed on that but for now that'll probably be the first welcome lunch.
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# by ekwok | 2007-04-16 00:44 | Welcome Lunch

My Bread 僕のパン

It's been a long time since I've made bread but I thought I would put up a picture of my handiwork. Baking bread is hard! I can't produce the same product every time. There are so many factors to take into account, such as the weather, humidity, temperature of the water, my yeast culture, kneading, benchtime, yada, yada, yada.

Simple sourdough bun. Wild yeast, strong flour, water, sugar, salt, and butter to finish.

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My yeast is very tempermental. Too tempermental. It's a semi-solid type of natural yeast, which I keep in the fridge. N complains it takes up too much vegetable drawer space.

In the beginning it developed and grew very well but then after a couple times it stayed flat and wouldn't get up. One book says that I should keep my kneading of the yeast starter to a minimum. But McGee doesn't even mention that. McGee does mention that the if the starter is divided often, which redistributes the food supply, the better the yeasts will be able to grow. Otherwise, the bacteria that also grows with the yeast will consume nutrients more quickly and produce acid and other growth-inhibiting substances.

Another thing is that sourdoughs should be well salted. Salt limits bacterial protein-digesting enzymes and also helps to tighten the gluten network. Now McGee doesn't say whether to salt the starter or the dough. I'll try it out and tell you how it goes.

In another part of McGee's book, it says at 1.5-2% of the flour weight, salt improves the gluten network and volume of the loaf. So I think I'll start with that.
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# by ekwok | 2007-03-04 23:58 | Food and Cookery

More Books

My favorite 5 books about the vast culinary world.

1. The Professional Chef compiled by the Culinary Institute of America
2. On Food and Cookery by Harold McGee
3. Culinary Artistry by Andrew Dornenburg and Karen Page
4. Simple French Food by Michael Olney
5. Nancy Silverton's Breads from the LA Brea Bakery: Recipes for the Connoisseur by Nancy Silverton

Books I want. (Drool)

1. Michael Mina: The Cookbook
2. Chocolate Desserts by Pierre Herme
3. Tea: Aromas and Flavors Around the World
4. A Tale of Twelve Kitchens
5. The Ritz London Book of Afternoon Tea: The Art & Pleasures of Taking Tea Helen Simpson

So if you compare my last top 5 and current top 5, you'll notice that I bought Nancy Silverton's Breads from the LA Brea Bakery. It's such a great book on how to make sourdough breads from natural yeast floating around your home. Hmm...while reading it, I was wondering if I could get some great yeast cultures if I went to some great places like a pristine forest and started the culture there. Imagine, yeast from the Amazon, yeast from Mount Everest, yeast from space! (To make green bread to go with green eggs and ham.) Okay, there are limits.

Recently, I went to Maruzen bookstore in Oazo and found a book that was just put on the shelf. Michael Mina: The Cookbook. This guy's work and recipes look and sound amazing. He has some really interesting tasting menus and the presentation is absolutely wonderful, very good eye. In order to make his foams, he throws lecithin in everything. Lechitin is just a protein, and it makes foams stable. Think of the foam on top of cappucinos, that's possible because of proteins like casein in milk. However, I'm not sure if I like the idea of using lecithin. Not that lechitin is bad but it just seems like a shortcut, like how some people use MSG to flavor everything. But I really like his foams.

Here's a write up on Amazon

"San Francisco chef Mina, who has franchised himself to Las Vegas with the backing of tennis star Agassi, declares that all the recipes in his book have been "designed to be prepared in the home kitchen by a single cook." The home cook with a day job is unlikely to regard this as a practical guide, however, unless similarly driven by Mina's obsession with the core concept: the trio. Each of his New American dishes, from starter to dessert, is presented with three different interpretations of the key ingredient. For instance, his Summer Berry Cobbler, Berry Sundae with Mascarpone Ice Cream, involves creating a raspberry cobbler with vanilla streusel, a blueberry cobbler with lavender scone and a blackberry cobbler with candied ginger shortbread, in hot and cold variations to be eaten in alternating bites. "

The Trio...cool!
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# by ekwok | 2007-02-22 01:28 | The Written Word

My Recent Work 最近の作品

日本語のは後で。

With the following images, they have been taken after the chef picked through it and tasted it. I tried my best to put it back together but I didn't want to spend too much time on it because there's a pile of dishes with my name on it.

Les Landes
Magrets de Canard avec Poeles Pommes de Terre Confites
Duck Breast with Potatoe boiled in goose fat

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Okay, I must admit the potatoes sound a little gross being boiled in FAT but same with french fries. What might shock you more is that I tasted the melted fat in order to get an idea of how much salt is in it. The duck breasts were from ducks that were raised for duck foie gras.

L'Auvergne
Chou Farci Braise
Braised Stuffed Cabbage

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You can't really picture it well here but imagine spirals of carrot, daikon, and potato from the center of the stuffed cabbage and a spiral of tourned vegetables. Traditionally, it should be round but i chose a puck shape so I could get a flat surface to work on.

La Normandie
Cassolette de Coquillages au Gratin
Seafood pie run under a salamander

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Yeah, I know. I burnt it. It was my first time using a salamander and boy is it strong! Do you like the langoustine waving? I called him Jacque. If you notice carefully, you'll see that there's a chunk of crust missing...I would like to say it's on purpose but actually, a hand torch fell on that spot and smashed it to pieces. Sigh. Luckily, I had Jacque and he filled that space in nicely. This dish tastes really good! I love it but it's YEET-HAY.
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# by ekwok | 2007-02-21 01:51 | Le Cordon Bleu

What I ate in class today. 今日の授業で食べた物

Can you guess what this is?

これは何ですか?

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It's rabbit! And for it's privacy, I decided to hide it's identity. That and it looks too freaky if you can see it's eyes.

ウサギです。ウサギのプライバシーのためにウサギの目を隠します。その上ウサギの目を見たら、恐すぎます。グロス。





It was my first time eating rabbit. You know how a lot of things taste like chicken. Well, this didn't. It was a completely new taste. Gamey. Soft. Complex.

ウサギを食べることは初めて。よくいろいろな食べ物の味は鳥肉みたいでしょう。でもこれは鳥みたいじゃありませんでした。じゅうぶん新しい味経験でした。野生的。やわらかい。複雑。

Tomorrow I'll make chicken made to look like a frog. Can you imagine it?

明日カエル形の鳥を使います。イメージができますか?

Before.

前。

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After.

後。

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# by ekwok | 2007-01-11 23:18 | Le Cordon Bleu

Top 5 Food Books Bought/Desired 買った本と欲しい本トップ5

My favorite 5 books about the vast culinary world.

1. The Professional Chef compiled by the Culinary Institute of America
2. On Food and Cookery by Harold McGee
3. Culinary Artistry by Andrew Dornenburg and Karen Page
4. Simple French Food by Michael Olney
5. 「自家製酵母」のパン 

Books I want. (Drool)

1. Nancy Silverton's Breads from the LA Brea Bakery: Recipes for the Connoisseur by Nancy Silverton
2. Chocolate Desserts by Pierre Herme
3. Working the Plate: The Art of Food Presentation by Christopher Styler
4. Remarkable Service: A Guide to Winning and Keeping Customers for Servers, Managers, and Restaurant Owners Culinary Institute of America
5. The Ritz London Book of Afternoon Tea: The Art & Pleasures of Taking Tea Helen Simpson
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# by ekwok | 2006-12-29 01:12 | The Written Word

Choir Celebration Dinner-2006 聖歌隊の祝典のご飯

I would like to thank everyone who helped up with the purchasing, prepping, cooking, washing, cleaning, serving, etc. of all the food over Saturday and Sunday. The dinner couldn't have happened so smoothly without all your love and efforts. It was a labor of love.

手伝った人達はありがとうございます。材料を買うことはありがとう。野菜を洗って切ることはありがとう。料理をすることはありがとう。器や台所用品(だいどころようひん)を洗うことはありがとう。掃除(そうじ)をすることはありがとう。盛り付けることはありがとう。もし手伝った人らがいなかったら、順調に(じゅんちょうに)ご飯は出来なかったです。好意(こうい)でする仕事でした。

For those that don't know, every year at TBC, we put on 10-12 performances in a vertical stage that looks like a tree. It's called the "Singing Christmas Tree." I know people in Vancouver might be familiar with this because Broadway Church has one too with a really big "tree."

知らない人達のために説明すると、毎年TBCで「シンギンぐ・クリスマス・ツリー」と言う聖歌隊(せいかたい)コンサートを10-12やります。ステージはクリスマス・ツリーみたい。これはヴァンくバー出身人達が知るかもしれません。「ブロードウェー・チャーチ」と言う教会はこれもやります。でももっと大きいです。

Anyways, this celebration dinner was to thank all the choir members, band, costume designers, sound and light crew, and pastors for all their hard work for all those performances! Praise God!

この祝典のご飯は聖歌隊とかバンドとか舞台装置衣装(ぶたい そうち いしょう)デザイナー音楽とライト・クルーとか牧師(ぼくし)のためにきつい仕事を感謝(かんしゃ)することでした。

Here was our menu:

次はメニュです。

Chicken and Mizuna wrapped in Daikon with a Spicy Rasperry-Ginger Vinegrette
Smoked Salmon with Horseradish Cream and Pink Peppercorns on Puff Pastry
Seared Scallops with Tomato Roses on a bed of Sauce Vert (Green Sauce)
Orange-Black Olives-Sugar Roasted Almond Slices on Mizuna and some kind of lettuce (サラダ葉 in Japanese) with a Lemon-Olive Oil Vinegrette
Pot au Feu with Garnishes: Cabbage, and Tourned Turnips, Carrots, and Potatoes
Roast Turkey with Jus
Lemongrass (Vietnam) Cranberry Chutney
Mushroom Stuffing
Pureed Potatoes

大根で包んだ鳥肉とみずな、スパイシーラズベリーと生姜のヴィネぐレットソース
スモークサーモンとセイヨウワサビとピンク・ぺっパコーンタルト
焼いたほたてとトマトのバラ、グリーン・ソース
オレンジとブラックオリーブと砂糖でひふくアーモンドスライスとみずなとサラダ葉、レモンとオリーブ油ヴィネぐレットソース
ポトフと付け合わせ:キャベツとトルネに切った人参とトルネに切ったかぶとトルネに切った
じゃがいも
ロースト・ターキーと肉汁
レモングラス(ベトナム用)クランベリー・チャットニー
マッシュルーム・スタッフィング
じゃがいもぷのピューレ

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Some memories:

覚えだし

Shopping for groceries in a sub-compact car with four people and packing every inch of space with ingredients and human flesh. Nami blogged about that with a picture of the trunk.

マーチで四人は150人のために買い物しました。材料と人間はいっぱいでした。なみのブログは説明して写真があります。

I tourned all the turnips, carrots, and potatoes, enough for 150 people.

トルネに切った野菜について僕が150人に全部自分で作りました。

Diego and Nori tossing the oranges around...and dropping them. (-_-) Don't worry, we washed them well.

DJさんとのりさんは遊んでオレンジをcatch-ballしてやっぱり落としちゃった。(-_-)でもそのご飯を食べた人達、大丈夫。よく洗いました。
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# by ekwok | 2006-12-16 00:49 | Food and Cookery

Hong Kong-At the Airport

So after getting off the plane, we decided to get some money exchanged at the airport since it was convienent. During our transaction, our teller was having a conversation with another teller. (It's so different from Japan, where you could expect undivided attention.)

Suddenly, another teller shouts from another counter about 3 meters away, "Hey, I'm out of $100 bills. Do you have any?" At which, our teller responds, "Yea, catch!" And then throws a wad of $100 bills across us and over to the other person. It was a poor throw and resulted in knocking down a cardboard advertising stand on the counter. It was so close I could have reached out and grabbed it.

I love Hong Kong.
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# by ekwok | 2006-11-23 19:06 | Travel Abroad

Hong Kong

I love Hong Kong. It's like a mixture of high rises and old time markets. Kowloon is cool too with it's old buildings and slummy areas and night markets.

So many good memories. I'll tell you more about it in short stories. Enjoy.
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# by ekwok | 2006-11-23 19:05 | Travel Abroad

Goofing around

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I got some free cotton candy while walking around Daikanyama and decided to have some fun.

代官山で散歩中綿菓子(わたがし)をもらいました。ただでした。やった!だから楽しかったです。
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# by ekwok | 2006-11-18 05:43 | Le Cordon Bleu