No Recipes vol. 7 (christmas edition)

My mom has the misfortune of having her birthday fall on Christmas day. While it’s not much fun for her (one year we even resolved to moving her birthday to June), this is particularly fortuitous for me since I only need to make one trip back to celebrate both occasions.

Despite my dislike for cooking in other peoples kitchens, I make an exception for her birthday and cook a christmas/birthday dinner for her every year. This year I also made a food book with some of the best recipes from this blog and printed it through iPhoto which I paired with a dinner I made using recipes out of the book.

Here are the highlights of the dinner

Cured Tai, Meyere Lemon Peel, and MitsubaKonbu consumé with cured tai and arareCured tai in kombu consumé with arare crackers – This is the only dish for this dinner I’d never made before. Its based on a vision that’s been floating around in my head for a few weeks and I’d really been itching to give it a try. It was the first course and made for a nice light intro to the whole meal. The tai is cured with salt between layers of kombu for a day. It’s plated in tea cups with a little meyer lemon zest and a mitsuba leaf then kombu consumé is poured over it all from a teapot at the table. The hot broth gently poaches the cured fish while at the same time releasing the wonderful flavors of the salted tai into the soup. I also made some arare (rice cracker balls) by cubing mochi and roasting it in the oven. They add a nice crunch and the flavor of the toasted rice added a nice nutty polish to the dish.

Tuna PokeTuna Poke – I’ve never been a big fan of tuna sashimi. To me it’s a bit bland, so I really like turning it into a Hawaiian poke. The sesame oil, sea salt and seaweed is all it needs to really make it shine. This was course number two.

Chirashi SushiChirashi Sushi – While uni and ikura aren’t everyone’s cup of tea, this is exactly the sort of thing my mom would like, so I went ahead and made it. It’s colorful, festive and relatively easy to make which makes it a great choice for large groups of people (provided they all like sushi).

Pork belly kakuni – We have a non-sushi eater in our family, so I made this braised pork belly to keep in line with the Japanese theme while providing a meat dish that he could eat. It hadn’t occurred to me that pork belly isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, but people seemed to like it none-the-less.

Meyer Lemon Spound CakeMeyer Lemon Spound Cake with Rasberry Puree – I’m really kind of infatuated with these little cakes, so rather than make a big elaborate birthday cake I made little individual spound cakes and put a single candle in it for my mom (seeing 60 candles in a cake probably would have ruined any cake I made for her). Their oven runs really cool, so I had to bake it for about 20 minutes (instead of 10), but other than that it went perfectly and was a hit.

  • http://www.whiskblog.com/ Shari

    Your mom is very lucky to get a book and someone who will cook her all these lovely things! I love the sound of that meyer lemon spound cake!

  • http://www.whiskblog.com/ Shari

    Your mom is very lucky to get a book and someone who will cook her all these lovely things! I love the sound of that meyer lemon spound cake!

  • Emily

    I love the presentation style of every dish that you make. Simple, yet colorful in most cases.

    I would totally eat this dinner. I loveeee raw fish and Japanese cuisine

  • Emily

    I love the presentation style of every dish that you make. Simple, yet colorful in most cases.

    I would totally eat this dinner. I loveeee raw fish and Japanese cuisine

  • http://kyotofoodie.com/ Miwa

    Wow, all of the dishes looks wonderful! Especially your Chirashi-zushi looks amazing! The food really goes well with the motif of the bowl! You are really artistic! What kind of leaves did you use? Is it shiso?

    • marc

      Thanks! yep, the leaves are green shiso (aojiso).

  • http://kyotofoodie.com Miwa

    Wow, all of the dishes looks wonderful! Especially your Chirashi-zushi looks amazing! The food really goes well with the motif of the bowl! You are really artistic! What kind of leaves did you use? Is it shiso?

    • marc

      Thanks! yep, the leaves are green shiso (aojiso).

  • http://www.kyotofoodie.com/ Peko P

    Nice chirashi sushi recipe!

    I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE uni and ikura.

    My New Year’s Day breakfast ritual — interrupted by large box of premium osechi this year — is a massive (zeitaku) helping of uni and ikura on rice, basically a donburi. Wash it down with a bottle of champagne and then go back to bed and dream about a happy new year. The last pic on this KF post shows it.

  • http://www.kyotofoodie.com Peko P

    Nice chirashi sushi recipe!

    I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE uni and ikura.

    My New Year’s Day breakfast ritual — interrupted by large box of premium osechi this year — is a massive (zeitaku) helping of uni and ikura on rice, basically a donburi. Wash it down with a bottle of champagne and then go back to bed and dream about a happy new year. The last pic on this KF post shows it.

  • http://manggy.blogspot.com/ Manggy

    You made me realize that there’s really a paucity of nouveau Japanese cookbooks written in English. I think the ones on the shelves are written by only two guys, heh heh :) You really could be the third, your recipes rock!

    • marc

      Someday:-)

  • http://manggy.blogspot.com Manggy

    You made me realize that there’s really a paucity of nouveau Japanese cookbooks written in English. I think the ones on the shelves are written by only two guys, heh heh :) You really could be the third, your recipes rock!

    • marc

      Someday:-)

  • http://lisaiscooking.blogspot.com/ lisaiscooking

    What a great gift! That was a lovely meal. Love the tuna poke.

  • http://lisaiscooking.blogspot.com/ lisaiscooking

    What a great gift! That was a lovely meal. Love the tuna poke.

  • http://www.eatingclubvancouver.com/ [eatingclub] vancouver || js

    What a wonderful thing to do for your mom! You did an amazing job with her birthday meal. I love the first course: so elegant, so “subtle yet profound.” And I’m still looking at those spound cakes. . .Fantastic!

  • http://www.eatingclubvancouver.com [eatingclub] vancouver || js

    What a wonderful thing to do for your mom! You did an amazing job with her birthday meal. I love the first course: so elegant, so “subtle yet profound.” And I’m still looking at those spound cakes. . .Fantastic!

  • http://food.lizsteinberg.com/ Liz

    Looks fabulous!

  • http://food.lizsteinberg.com Liz

    Looks fabulous!

Welcome!

I'm Marc, and I want to teach you some basic techniques and give you the confidence and inspiration so that you can cook without recipes too!

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