I try to eat vegetarian at least a few meals a week (vegetarian breakfast doesn’t count) to offset Sam and I’s tendency to meat gorge when we dine out. One afternoon while exploring Japantown, I wandered into a market, as I am wont to do. I bought some staples like dashi, udon noodles, enoki mushrooms, baby bok choy, and curry. S&B curry is the brand my mom bought when I was kid, so it’s the curry I get now too. I’m sure there are better brands out there.
With Asian food, (read: Japanese, Chinese, and Korean for the purposes of this post), I find that recipes don’t quite get things right, and much of the cooking is by taste. I generally followed this recipe, but along the way deviated quite a bit. Basically, after sauteing some garlic and ginger, I followed the curry instructions and added dashi stock and soba noodle sauce to taste. After adding the veggies and letting them soften, I added the udon noodles at the very end.
I also added a poached egg on top, because I’m a sucker for runny yolk. And, Koreans like to throw egg on top of stuff. The yolk thickened the broth and carried the flavor, as eggs like to do in ramen, bibimbap, and soondooboo. Cooking Japanese is relatively new to me, I’m looking forward to tasting, seeing, and experiencing more of Japan here in San Francisco.
Inside Golden Gate Park is a Japanese Tea Garden with beautiful, peaceful grounds. Taking time to sit and drink sencha tea in the sunshine was good for the soul.