“Tire Patches” (Veal Patties)

Another Frederick Family recipe. I’m honestly surprised I never made these before – I always liked this meal growing up, and they’re super easy to make.

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Almond Coconut Satay

This was a pretty solid spin on satay.

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Shaksuka

I made this during Kevin’s and my breakfast feast and it was quite good. My only regret – not remembering to get bread in order to soak up the sauce.

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Lighter Cumin Lamb

This Cooking Light recipe isn’t all that different than the other one I’ve made before, but always good to have a light version and we really enjoyed this. We served with cauliflower rice.

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Flip Steak

2018 brings a new food challenge! I’m going to try to make 52 recipes I remember having as dinners or dishes growing up. I’ve brainstormed lots of options (our family had more variety in dining than I would have expected!) and am excited to this. It’s already been fun thinking of ideas with my family and bugging my parents for recipes. Expect some to be fancy and others to be quite casual. There will be Cleveland-area influences and signs of the times (80s and 90s) as well.

I’m kicking this off with flip steak. This falls into the category of weird Cleveland dinners that was a mainstay in our household but isn’t something people really have heard of when I mentioned it. This is what they called a particular cut of meat in grocery stores, and it’s also a reference to the fact that the preparation is basically a quick pan fry, frequently flipping the meat. We called a local butcher to get some intel, and he said that the meat is usually thin-cut sirloin, but sometimes can be top round or London broil. I’ve found very little online about this particular cut, but this internet piece also has seen it labeled braciole, which my mother recalls as well. As a kid, this wasn’t really one of my favorite meals (though I started enjoying it more when my parents started melting cheese over the pieces of meat). But John and I quite enjoyed it when I attempted to recreate it last night, and it couldn’t be easier. I bought sirloin tip steaks because it seemed to be the closest approximation at the store, but I pounded them a little thinner.

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Japanese Challenge Complete! A Rundown of #MissysMidnightDiner

If my math is right, I ended up making 62 different Japanese dishes. Wow! Here they are:

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Noodles, Soups, and Noodle Soups:
Miso Ramen (plus Chashu, Soy-Marinated Eggs, and Ramen Stock)
Kitsune Udon
Yakisoba
Stamina Udon
Tantanmen
Kare Udon with Katsu
Nabeyaki Udon
Mori Soba
Tempura Udon
Tanmen
Miso Soup
Dashi

Stews and Curries:
Vegetarian Curry
“Retro” Beef Curry
Chanko Nabe
Matsutake Sukiyaki
Battleship Curry
Pressure Cooker Chicken Curry
Hot Pot for One

Donburi and Rice Dishes:
Katsudon
Yuzu Salmon Donburi
Matsutake Gohan
Pressure Cooker Sushi Rice
Salmon Teriyaki Donburi
Beef Bowl
Oyakodon
Nishyoku-Don
Green Tea Rice

Meat Dishes:
Baked Tonkatsu
Tonteki
Beef and Eggplant with Miso
Nikujaga

Seafood Dishes:
Quick Ponzu Salmon
Miso-Glazed Salmon
Chirashi
Simmered Shrimp
Shrimp and Vegetable Tempura
Tuna Tataki

Izakaya Dishes/Skewers
Agedashi Tofu
Grilled Shitakes
Simmered Daikon
Gyoza
Gyoza-Stuffed Wings
Kara-Age
Tsukune
Yakitori
Negamaki (Note, these fell apart terribly so I didn’t actually end up blogging them)

Yoshoku/Other Fusion
Okonomiyaki-style omurice
Pork Hambagu Steak
Japanese Mapo Tofu

Sides:
Japanese Sweet Potatoes
Japanese Pickles (salt, miso, and miso-rubbed eggplant)
Soy Cucumber Pickles
Pickled Daikon

Other:
Japanese Breakfast
Matcha Latte
Ginger Carrot Salad Dressing

Random observations:

-Ramen is kind of a hassle to make (not entirely news to me since I’d done shio before, but still). Definitely spread out the labor over a few days if you can.

-Matsutake mushrooms, lotus root, and tofu rule. Also, Japanese breakfast is my favorite breakfast.

-Not surprising: that noodles and soups were the most frequent dishes to show up in the rotation. Somewhat surprising: that I ended up making five types of Japanese pickles and four types of curry.

-I knew dashi, mirin, soy, etc. were important to Japanese cuisine but perhaps didn’t understand what core building blocks they were to so many dishes.

-Great sources for recipes: Just One Cookbook (probably my #1 resource), my cookbooks “Japanese Soul Cooking” and “Tokyo Cult Recipes” (I have other Japanese cookbooks, but these were the best), and Harumi’s “Japanese Mini Kitchen” series on NHK. I made a handful of Serious Eats and Japanese Cooking 101 recipes, too, and worked in a few other sources as well.

-MVP Dishes: The dishes I actually made multiple times during the challenge: kara-age, nishyoku don, tuna tataki, Japanese salt pickles, grilled shitakes (once by John), Japanese breakfast, ponzu salmon, dashi. My overall favorite recipe, though, was probably the tantanmen. The omurice was also a show-stopper.

-Least successful recipes: Miso-marinated salmon (eh), Green tea rice (we didn’t really eat it, though I bet there’s a better recipe out there), negamaki (fell apart).

-My Japanese pantry and fridge have reached epic, yet ridiculous proportions (“well, of course I need two different colors of sesame paste, OBVI”). I also am now the proud owner of everything from a daikon grater to multiple drop lids, thanks to my husband who encouraged this hobby (especially during the Christmas season).

-Dishes I really wanted to make but didn’t get around to it (yet!): croquettes (though John made them one night), tako yaki (I even bought the pan!), somen, kaki age. I’d hoped to work on my rolled omelet, which I haven’t really mastered yet, but  never got around to it. I didn’t make much in the way of sushi (though I’ve done maki rolls a few times before this year), but I honestly find it a hassle so I’m not shocked that I slacked here.

Such a fun challenge! I definitely discovered that Japanese cooking will remain a hobby long after 2017.

 

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Japanese Vegetarian Curry

This was curry #2 for potluck, and was a hit among vegetarians and meat eaters alike. I used this chicken curry recipe as a building block, subbing in vegetables (including new-to-me-for-cooking ones like burdock and lotus root) for the protein.

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