chikuzen-ni: easy, peasy, japanesey.

this post is going to start with a little bit of unadulterated praise.

most chefs who prepare washoku in a restaurant setting have a truly incredible attention to detail, which can encompass everything from the taste of their dish to the geometry of their plating.  as is the case with a lot of facets of life in japan, there seems to be a tried and true method behind most japanese recipes.  some of these methods are easily explained and demonstrated, while others seem, for lack of a better word, almost magical.

i often find myself in childlike awe when watching a few of my japanese friends cook their specialty dishes.  watching pros prepare foods like slow-simmered fish heads, deep sea angler hot pot, or dozen-egg rolled omelettes is mind-blowing.  of course the end product tastes great.  but the freshness and simplicity of the ingredients they use necessitates a borderline superhuman culinary sense.  a culinary sense which can only be acquired through (what i assume to be) trial and error.

that being said, i am not japanese.  i have the attention to detail required to cook complex japanese food, and on occasion i even use it.  but i like to cook on the fly.  i’m not much one for patient measuring, complex kitchen tools, or difficult techinques.  i have a very deliberate personal style when it comes to cooking.

sometimes, that style involves getting drunk, nearly cutting off my fingers, forgetting that the stove is on, and starting a fire in my kitchen.

Continue reading