Japanese food is supposed to be a feast for the eye, but my skill at fruit and vegetable carving is limited. I saw a YouTube video about how to cut beautiful cupped flowers which looked easy. I had the fattest carrots I could find (from the video, Japanese carrots look very thick) and some slender zucchini for my victims. Peel the carrot, then mark 5 lines down its length. Make two cuts for each petal to remove a ‘v’ shaped shred. The idea is that you want a flower shape on each end. OK. Trim one end like a blunt pencil. Cut, or shave around all five petals, and continue to a sixth. Remove your first flower.
Well, I’m not putting the video up: this is not something to try at home!
You notice my flowers are flat—a homey touch, those irregularities.
Check our an earlier post for details about frying the noodles: After spending so much time decorating carrots I just boiled them…
with vegetables and seafood
Chuka Soba Itame-yasai to Shi-fu-do
a revision from The Japanese Kitchen
•250 Recipes in a Traditional Spirit•
by Hiroko Shimbo
- a few snow peas for garnish
- 2 cups sliced zucchini
- 1 red pepper
- 2 carrots, sliced
- 8 ounces bay scallops
- handful of enoki mushrooms
Blanch the peas. Slice zucchini. Grill and skin red pepper, then slice. Slice carrots. Cut the mushrooms.
- 1 cup chicken stock
- 2 Tablespoons sake
- ½ teaspoon sugar
- 1 Tablespoon shoyu
- ¼ to ½ teaspoon salt, to taste
- 1 Tablespoon potato starch, mixed with 1 ½ TBS water
- Ground white pepper
Combine the chicken stock, sake, sugar, and shoyu.
Heat a wok, and add a little vegetable oil.
Add the vegetables, and stir-fry for a minute or two. Add the scallops, and give them a few good stirs.
Add the sauce, and bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce heat to low and add the potato starch slurry. Cook until the sauce is thickened.
Taste and add salt if needed. Add a generous amount of ground pepper.
Divide the sauce and vegetables over the 4 bowls of fried noodles.