exordinarily ordinary

A tail of a girl..

Sunday, June 25, 2006

Summer comfort food

One of the dirty little secrets about me is that I love to cook. Especially since I left the ex, it has become something that I really enjoy. Swilling beer and making dinner, now that's a good way for me to start the evening! That said I am not a great cook. I am one of those guys who slavishly follows the recipe book. The S.O. on the other hand is a GREAT cook. She has a real knack for knowing how to season exactly right, figure out what should go in the food, improvise and she has a real flair for presentation. However she does not really like to cook Western food. So she and I have an agreement, I do most of the cooking and when Nihon no Ryori (日本の料理、Japanese food) is required she cooks. It works out well for both of us as she is very picky about how the kitchen is cleaned, I hate to do dishes.

Hyashichuka (冷し中華、Cold Chinese Ramen) is one of those things I cannot get enough of during the summer. The S.O. really makes this in a way I like. Since Sourrain has posted some yummy things here in the past, I tought I would too.

Anyway, the S.O. knows that I love Hiyashichuka and it makes a great summer time meal. Its light and fresh and during the hot, hot days of summer here that follow the rainy season, a great meal.

You start with a special Chinese ramen. Easy to find over here, I am not so sure about how easy it is to get in America or Europe, however I suggest looking in an Asian market:

Nama Hiyashi chuka ramen(冷し中華らめん)。

Inside the bag are packets of Ramen and packets of Shoyuu(しょう油、Soy Sauce) You can also get it with a special Miso sauce, but I prefer the Shouyuu. One packet per person. You cook the ramen in boiling water just like spaghetti. While that's going on cut up some salad veggies:

Cut veggies.

The S.O. normally uses the following:

Cucumbers cut into long thin strips
green Onions chopped up
Daikon ( Big Japanese Radish)

At the same time she also makes 2 eggs scrambled into a thin omelet like sheet. Boil a boneless breast of chicken and cut up some Luncheon meat ham.(I'll bet it might also be good with some fried Spam!)

When the ramen is done, first put the soy sauce from the packet on each plate( 1 Packet per person). Then drain the ramen and allow it to cool. ( S.O. uses a small strainer to do this as she cooks the packets of ramen separately in 2 different pans. ) Put the ramen over the soy sauce like this:

The ramen placed on the plate in the special soy sauce.

Now comes the fun part. Each person should then take some wa karashi(和からし、Japanese hot mustard). Warning! A little goes a long way and its spicy! However squeeze some into the noodles and mix it up into the noodles with your hashi (はし、chopsticks). Here is what Japanese mustard looks like, its in the yellow tube:

The tube is the mustard and the soy sauce is in the packet.

Either before or after serving, put all those cut veggies on top of the ramen. Put some of the ham, chicken and egg strips on there too. Load it up. As you can see in the picture she makes some Tofu with sauce as a side dish.

More to go

And that is it. This goes well with a nice white wine or a good cold beer. Its a great meal for 2 people on a hot summer's day. Enjoy.



Blogger mooiness said...

Great and simple recipe. Thanks! :)

6/26/2006 01:31:00 AM  
Anonymous dreymer said...

wow you can cook! i'm impressed!

6/26/2006 01:57:00 AM  
Anonymous dreymer said...

ok. i'm embarassed. i confess that i was too engrossed with the pics to read the details until now. you had someone to cook for you. lucky b.

6/26/2006 06:12:00 AM  
Blogger Skippy-san said...

I do cook, actually. I make dinner most nights, whenever we have American / Western food. I am actually a good receipe follower. For all things Japanese however the S.O. does the cooking.

We both take turns trying Chinese dishes, but right now I'd say S.O. has the advantge. But hey, I make great Mexican food!

6/26/2006 06:29:00 AM  
Blogger sourrain said...

Bravo Skippy san!!

The SO must think you mad for snapping pictures of food but not her.

6/26/2006 08:46:00 AM  
Blogger Skippy-san said...

Actually she did wonder what I was doing when I took these. If you look closely at the last pic, that's her apron to the right......She was sitting at the table when I took the picture.

6/26/2006 08:59:00 AM  
Blogger sourrain said...

I have been staring at the plate of noodle again and again all morning...and my cornflake is getting more and more unappetizing.

Damn delicious food! Not that I have much choice of lunch food after a weekend of cornflakes replaced by bacon.REAL bacon.


Continue taking pictures of the SO cooking skippy..by the end of it all she'll think you completely mad..:)

6/26/2006 01:02:00 PM  
Blogger Skippy-san said...

Want a doughnut?

The S.O. makes a pretty good yakisoba too............

6/27/2006 03:43:00 AM  

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