My love affair with Japanese food started late. I live in Vancouver, a city where babies eat sushi and snack on seaweed. It is embarrassing to admit that I didn’t try sashimi until my early twenties. I was that girl that ordered kappa maki (cucumber rolls) or avocado rolls while everyone else was raving about the tuna. Tuna Tataki salad was the dish that changed me. Maybe it was the light sear on the tuna that made it seem less scary. Perhaps that zingy dressing took the edge off. Whatever the reason, I fell in love. Fast-forward to the present date; Japanese food is a staple of my life. My guy is half-Japanese and I even helped produce a friend’s Japanese Cookbook. One of my life goals is to spend at least a year living in Japan. Heck, my dog is named Akiko…a popular name for Japanese girls. Go figure. The word “Tataki” in this context refers to fish or meat that has been lightly seared on the outside. You will often see Tuna Tataki made with …
It’s rare that I share other peoples’ recipes, but this salad dressing is so good you will want to stick a straw in the jar. I served it at a family dinner the other day and everyone had seconds…and thirds. This is a famous recipe that originated at Hollyhock on Cortes Island. I wrote about my visit to Hollyhock a long time ago. Since then, this dressing has haunted my dreams. It’s just that good. The key ingredient is nutritional yeast. If you’ve never tried nutritional yeast before, you are in for a treat. The flavour is savoury and cheese-like. You can buy it in most health food stores. This recipe makes a substantial amount of dressing, but it won’t go to waste. It’s really good on rice or roasted vegetables. It would be perfect as a sauce for a Dragon Bowl. My salad was a mix of baby spinach, red onion, sliced apples, pomegranate and walnuts but you can use your favourite blend. The dressing is very versatile. Check out the famous Hollyhock Salad …
Yesterday was a good day. The photography gods were smiling on me. There are some days when I can’t get a decent photo of my food to save my life. It’s usually a combination of my own impatience and less than ideal lighting. I had 3 desserts to photograph and I managed to get them all photographed in less than 2 hours. It’s a miracle!
Tonight, we are having a Japanese style hot pot for dinner. We like to load ours up with cabbage, mushrooms, tofu, daikon and konnyaku. What is konnyaku, you ask? Konnyaku is the Japanese name for the konjac plant. The root of the konjac plant can be processed in to a rather bouncy food item. You may have seen noodles made of konjac labelled as Miracle Noodles or Shirataki. We buy shirataki from local asian markets as well as bricks of konjac gel that can be cut up in to cubes.
I can’t believe this is the first time I’m posting a sorbet recipe! What a colossal oversight on my part. One of the great joys of owning a quality blender is making quick and easy whole-fruit sorbets! It took me a few attempts at sorbet making to get my ratios of frozen fruit to liquid right. The good news is, if you mess up you will just end up with a smoothie.
Herbalists claim that bitters can aid digestion. That’s cool and everything, but I like them in a Manhattan. If you are the non-drinking type, they add nice flavour to glass of sparkling water. If you are thinking about making some gifts for the holiday season, consider homemade bitters. The hardest part of the process is tracking down the ingredients and that is not that hard if you are willing to order online. I bought most of the ingredients from Mountain Rose Herbs, they are not paying me to say that.
A terrible thing has happened. I have run out of coffee. Don’t cry for me, I have a back-up plan.
You see that kitty cat in the photo above? It’s actually a pencil sharpener. Can you guess where the pencil goes? I’ll give you a hint, it’s tail is raised for a reason. It meows as you sharpen your pencil. What does that have to do with Raw Vegan Raspberry Cheesecake? Absolutely nothing! I just thought I’d share. Now, on to the recipe…
I’ve always struggled with grain-free crepes. They tend to fall apart because they don’t have gluten to bind things together. This recipe worked for me. They are a bit thicker than flour-based crepes, but they definitely do the trick. I have two tips that can help you reduce frustration when making grain-free crepes. First, don’t make them too big. Mine are about 4 inches across. Secondly, don’t try to flip them too early. If you do, they will break apart and you will be mad.
I spent a ton of time in the kitchen last week, but very little of that time was spent cooking for the blog. I have been finishing up my practical assignments for my chocolate making course, so I’ve been knee deep in caramel, truffles and gianduja. If you are curious about my chocolate making exploits and other random adventures, I highly recommend you subscribe to my weekly newsletter. You can find the opt-in form at the bottom of this post.