college is a magical time for almost everybody. sure, it has its ups and downs. i think being a freshman is terrible for a lot of people, and i had a rough time my senior year because i just wanted to get out into the world. that being said, during my middle years, i had not a care in the world. my highlights included going to a few classes between partying, ordering enough pizza people got fatter by just entering the room, and making all sorts of stupid hasty decisions about what my future held. ah, i miss it.
when i remembered all the delicious edibles sitting in fridge last weekend, it was pretty close to too late. i had some broccoli, almost a whole head of garlic that was ready to sprout, and a few slices of well-marbled bacon. to throw away such a bounty would have been a travesty. i decided to act quickly.
i thought, “i’ll make frittata.”
do you remember space camp? even if you didn’t go to the official super-fancy nasa-sponsored space camp, you probably took some summer school course about space or something as a kid. and if you didn’t do either of those, chances are you probably wanted to and felt super dejected when you friends told you all of their awesome space camp stories.
in any case, being an astronaut is one of those jobs that mesmerized me when i was just a pup. of course, i was more into the idea of becoming the president or a fighter pilot or a scientist. but if a random member of nasa came up to me when i was a six-year-old and told me i was accepted to the official astronaut training program, you bet your butt i would have gone without thinking twice. space is huge and amazing and full of possibilities for six-year-olds, especially when the farthest away you have ever gone in your life is the public pool.
anyway, i’m pretty sure that six-year-olds think about becoming an astronaut like chickens think about becoming huevos rancheros.
like six-year-olds and space, most chickens probably have only a vague knowledge of mexican food. never in their wildest dreams would they have considered that they would become a delicious breakfast fit for a latin american farmer. i like to think that if i were a chicken and i was given a choice, i would go for the rancheros sauce without thinking twice. sure, i could hold out for a while and hope to become sous-vide or chicken cordon bleu, but more often than not i would end up something highly processed and much less tasty (like kfc, chicken nuggets, or instant ramen flavor packets).
well, i suppose that is enough strange asides for now. it’s recipe time.
i love breakfast, and i’m not ashamed to say it. i can honestly and with 100% confidence say that, especially in the states, it is one of the most under-appreciated (if not completely ignored) meals in the course of a single day. i make sure to wake up nice and early almost every day (including the weekends, i know i’m crazy) to make myself a good old-fashioned 1950’s style breakfast.
and as an avid breakfast fan, i’m here to tell you that while breakfast might not scientifically be proven as the most important meal of the day, it can easily become the meal that sets the pace for an entire 24 hours. suffice to say, cereal won’t cut it. if you start your day with cereal and some milk everyday, you are going to be sluggish and starving by lunch time. it just isn’t good for you.
personally, i make sure to eat hearty. eggs are a staple, and i always make an effort to include some fresh veggies and little bit of starch, too. in all honesty, the only food group that i regularly completely ignore is fruit. i’m not too big on sweet stuff, and high concentrations of sugar tend to make you crash later in the day.
today i was in rare form. i woke up nice and early, made a big pot of coffee, and got to work. my farmer friends have thrown produce at me left and right this month, so i resolved to use as much of the fresh goodies as i good today. the result was absolutely delicious, super manly, and chock full of nutrients.
sometimes you just have to wake up in the morning, look in the mirror, and remind yourself that you are from ‘merica. and today was one of those days.
i love japanese food. and when i say i love japanese food, i don’t mean just traditional japanese washoku. i love western cuisine-inspired yōshoku, too. japan has all kinds of awesome variations on classic american and european dishes, such as the curry filled donut (カレーパン), breaded pork cutlets (豚カツ), and spicy cod roe spaghetti (辛子明太子パスタ). some japanese chefs are protectors of art forms passed down for generations, while others are innovators using a relatively new palette of flavors and ingredients to make tasty new dishes never before heard of.
omuraisu is not, in my opinion, one of those dishes. it’s an omelette with rice inside. it was first pioneered in japan in 1900 in a restaurant in ginza called renga-tei. granted, it is popular among kids and super easy to make, but it still has an odious lackluster feel to it every time i see it in a restaurant. yeah, it might be swimming in a pool of demi-glace sauce or garnished with parsley or something, but it doesn’t change that fact that, at its core, omuraisu is just missing something.
when i did some thinking the other night, i realized why i don’t like omuraisu very much. as luck (or unluck) would have it, the fried rice portion of the rice omelette is seasoned with straight-up ketchup. and i don’t like ketchup. i dislike ketchup enough that i have regularly called it out as the worst thing to ever happened to sauce in the history of cuisine.
but i’m not a stubborn man. i’ve resigned myself to hating ketchup, but don’t want to not like omuraisu. so i pulled up my bootstraps, strapped on my cooking pants, and decided that i was going to make a brand spanking new omuraisu recipe that didn’t use a lick of ketchup, was chock-full of flavor, and implemented a plethora of ingredients that would turn the head of even the most stubborn omuraisu hater.
and here’s what came out of my noggin.