So you aren't sure about dinner plans for this weekend? Well, you want to try something to impress your date or a guest but you're untalented when it comes to cooking (ME!). Well this weeks appetizer and entrée is from the country where Valkors wife will be born... in about 5 yrs. from now, Japan. (Valkor's Note: OOhh Someone's got jokes I see. I think I'll keep all that Seagate shit that came in lol). I am going with a variation of my favorite meal opener Mushroom Tofu soup which is so simple because Tofu is already to be cut from the store and mushrooms aren't that hard to cut. And following It up with Miso chicken and rice, which is basically glaze and bake. I have fried and grilled chicken miso but I suggest sticking to this recipe.
Like always I am all about the prep work the night before, but the soup is something that takes literally 5 min to prep and start cooking. If you don't have a Wok you can get away with a large sauce pan, it just won't look as cool. The Miso Chicken can't be mixed either the lemon juice and the sake just wont taste right together over night. These recipes are from JW's http://japaneserecipe.blogspot.com/
IN JAPANESE: Mushroom to Tofu no ankake
- 1 package of Tofu (cut in blocks)
- 1/2 lb of mushroom sliced (15-20 mushroom)
- 2 TBsp Soy Sauce
- 2 TBsp Sake
- 2 TBsp Mirin
- 1 half inch piece of ginger (see TIP: Ginger)
- 1 tsp of dashi powder
- 1 cup of water
- 1 TBsp of corn starch
- 1 green onion (optional)
HOW TO: On a heated wok, add about a table spoon of vegetable oil, and when the oil is also heated, add the sliced mushroom and cook. When the mushrooms look fully cooked, lower the heat to low-medium and add the blocks of tofu. You are mostly trying to warm up the tofu, so there's no need to stir too hard and destroy the tofu.Add the soy sauce, sake, mirin and the shredded ginger and stir the wok gently not to break the tofu (instead of using chopsticks or spatula, just lift up the wok and twirl it around). Once that sauce gets mixed, add a cup of water and some dashi powder. While that water heats up in the wok, take 1 Tablespoon of corn starch and mix that with enough water (about 2 Tablespoons should do it) so all the powder dissolves. When the water (more like soup now) begins to boil, slowly add the dissolved corn starch to the wok and stir gently. As the wok continue to boil, the soup should get thicker.
Serve on a bowl with chopped green onions on top.
Prep time: 5 Min.
Cook time: 10 Min.
Ready in: 15 Min.
Miso Chicken w/ Rice
IN JAPANESE: Tori no Miso Yaki
- 1 lb Thin sliced Chicken breast (about 12 pieces)
- 2 TBsp of Miso (white would be better, but red is fine, too)
- 1 TBsp of Sake
- 1 TBsp of Mirin
- 1 tsp of Sugar
- 1/2 tsp of lemon juice
HOW TO: Pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees. In a bowl, mix miso, sake, mirin, sugar and lemon juice until you get a creamy sauce. Lightly grease a baking pan (9x13inch pan), and spread the miso sauce on each side of chicken pieces and spread them into the pan.Bake for 15-20 minutes until the chicken is cooked. You can cut the fattest piece to see if the juice from the meat is clear instead of red (clear means fully cooked, red means still bloody and raw). That's it!
Prep time: 10 Min.
Cook time: 20 Min.
Ready in: 30 Min. inc. rice
While all this is going on. You can make rice, if you cant make rice from scratch it might be easier to just get uncle bens or a Japanese equivalent. I also gave the thicker pieces of chicken some cuts on the side so they would cook thoroughly.
Remember to eat light and bow before your "Happy Ending"