Remember my last post roasting duck legs to make lettuce wraps? Well, I’ve got a related post. Bone broth has been something that is becoming more and more popular – there are even bone broth bars popping up everywhere. When I first read that, my first thought was confusion. Hasn’t this been done for ages? It’s certainly been a constant in my family – it was unusual to just throw away cooked bones. It was considered a waste. Instead, bones were simmered in water on a stove for hours on end, coaxing out the flavor and ending up with a deep, rich broth. By the end of making this broth, I was taking little sips, savoring each hot spoonful. I knew I couldn’t just throw away the roasted duck leg bones. I’ve had duck bone broth before – at a specifically duck joint in China where they served half a duck in pancakes with the broth from the bones, Momofuku’s whole duck meal, and a Nan Jing 南京 favorite: duck blood soup (which is SO GOOD, even if it sounds gross). This broth turned out so good. It is a perfect base for ramen, or any other type of noodle, I’d imagine.
Hope you all had a lovely weekend, everyone! By this time, I should be in Queenstown, NZ!! After almost a year of marriage, Alex and I are finally heading off to our honeymoon. We will be spending twelve nights in the South Island, renting a car so that we can listen to our hearts and drive to the many attractions in the South Island. Alex had just finished his Step 1 for medical school. For those of you who aren’t aware, it’s one of the hardest exams he has to take on his path to becoming a doctor. I’d say this is a well deserved vacation for him! Are any of you lovely readers from New Zealand or have been there? I’d love to hear tips or food recommendations! I admit our trip is mostly for the beautiful landscape and the myriad of activities (such as bungee jumping!!), but I’m always open to good food recommendations.
We love to travel. Of course, taking photographs and documenting our travel story has always been something we strive to do (China+Japan, California), so we’ve loaded up our gear. For you gear-lovers out there, isn’t it so hard to choose which lens to take? I have my favorites, certainly, but there’s always the silent but persistent voice asking me, what if? What if you need a longer lens? What if you need the widest lens you have? What if!!??? We ended up just choosing two bodies and three lens, so I hope that will be enough. I’ve scheduled a couple of posts while I’m gone, but for the most part I will be MIA. See you in two weeks! I’ve got some pretty amazing collaborations coming your way!
To hold you over, you can hop on over to Food52 to see the Roast Duck Lettuce Wraps article I wrote. I talk about lettuce wraps, the universality of wrapping meat in various materials, and this version including shredding roasted duck leg.
Yesterday, all I wanted to do was run across a cheerful field of grass with my arms thrown out to the sides, singing at the top of my lungs. It hit 70 in Boston!! I wore a light blazer, a silk black jumpsuit, and flats. I wore flats. For the first time since Labor Day (not really, but it feels like it), I was able to wear my thin flats without worrying about mud, remaining snow, or gross sleet forming puddles all around the road. This past weekend was similar. I walked around in high spirits, soaking up the rays of the sun. Meg and I actually sat in Stella’s outdoor patio, sipping on chilled glasses of rosé and Riesling, talking about exciting future projects and just exchanging stories of our silly puppies.
What a glorious weekend. And now, I bring to you a galette of vegetables. Carrot and daikon. I’m going to be honest with you. I’ve only had daikon sautéed on a pan, shredded and turned into patties, or cooked into soup. But the point of this blog is not only to honor my mom’s recipes but also to push boundaries and try new things. I also felt like it’s been way too long since I’ve had a flaky pie crust, so I put roasted carrot and daikon together in a simple, rustically formed galette.
Hi dear friends, do you ever have a moment – doesn’t have to be related to food – when you have this genius idea, but then realize it’s not quite so genius because even though it’s a great idea, it’s been done before?? Well, that happened to me. Hehe. It’s rather silly, too, because how the heck did I think it hadn’t been done before? Roasting strawberries and putting it in ice cream? Still a genius idea, but definitely not the first time it’s been done. David Lebovitz has a seriously amazing version incorporating MISO. MISO!!!!! And he goes into why roasting strawberries is good for ice cream, so you should go read it.
My version has a slight twist. I made the base ginger ice cream. Given my love for infusing things like for this ice cream, and this panna cotta, I infused the heavy cream and milk mixture with huge chunks of fresh ginger and steeped it for 30 minutes. You should be able to taste the ginger flavor after it is done seeping.
When these are baking in the oven, the kitchen fills up with this deep fragrant aroma that makes you want to yank open the oven and immediately eat a scone. I had the hardest time with this post, because all I wanted to do was eat them. Of course, though, I needed to photograph these giant scones. You can also find this recipe in this current issue of Edible Boston! For every issue, they have a Reader’s Recipe contest, and I love to submit something. If you can’t tell, I’m in love with my current city of residence. It makes me happy that there is a high quality food magazine in Boston. I moved here from Saint Louis, which has two beautiful food magazines, Feast and Sauce. I was so happy to see Sherrie in Sauce!! When my STL friends visit, I still beg them to bring me copies of the magazines :). There’s something about flipping through a physical magazine, knowing that it’s about food news in your specific city of residence. When Edible Boston issues come out, I always rush to Flour Bakery in the South End to pick up my copy (and devour a lamb-goat-cheese sandwich).
These scones. I started with a basic buttermilk scone recipe, and then it took me several renditions to get the proportions of gruyère, buttermilk, scallions, scallion puree, and flour right. My first one yielded a tough, unpleasant mess, but you know what? It’s a starting point. I incorporated a scallion puree, so that the taste of the scallion permeates in every bite, not just where there are pieces of chopped scallion. I found it gave a much deeper taste.
As I’m typing this post out, I’m munching on my third hot cross bun. Eek. I just can’t stop eating them. They are so soft, so fragrant, and honestly irresistible. I was all set to eat my greek yogurt with a grapefruit for breakfast, but then I baked these and, well… I stuffed my face, is what.
Hot cross buns. An Easter classic. I did my research when developing this recipe – it’s made in so many different ways. It almost felt like the dumplings of the western world. Different families have different ways of making them. The cross can be a flour/water paste that bakes into the buns and serves only as a way to mark the cross. Or, it can be the icing on top, providing a sweeter note than the other method. Some recipes call for a marmalade glaze, others just the standard egg wash. It’s made using currants or raisins, or other delicious things mixed in. It’s spiced, but could be any number of spices. Now, all you hot cross snobs will probably scoff at my version of these buns: tangzhong coconut milk hot cross buns!!!! It’s dairy-free because I used coconut water, coconut milk, and coconut oil in place of water, whole milk, and butter. It adds a subtle coconut taste, and there is the added benefit of inhaling the fragrant coconut smell as you knead the oil into the dough.
Just warning you: there are so many photos you’ll probably get bored halfway through :). Feel free to scroll all the way down for the recipe!
无面不欢 (wu mian bu huan) is a saying that can be loosely translated to no satisfaction without noodles. That’s pretty much me!!! The first time I had knife-cut noodles was in China; I was young, so my memory is spotty at best, but the texture and feel of these noodles stayed stubbornly in my mind. When I came back to the states, I always kept an eye out for knife-cut noodles. Luckily for me, we found a restaurant that serves these stir-fried, and it’s been my go-to place for years! Of course, when I moved away from home, I have to renew my search for these noodles, so I just decided to make them at home. You can find the recipe on Food52 here.
Knife cut noodles (刀削面 dao xiao mian) are legendary in China, a specialty of the Shanxi province. They are known as knife-shaved, knife-cut, pared noodles, or even peel noodles. In Chinese, they’re刀削面 (dao xiao mian.) The method of making them is an art form that takes years of practice.