Rice Cooker Love

As you can imagine, now that I’m working on a rice cooker cookbook, I have been making a lot of food in the rice cooker. I love how easy it is. With summer in full force, I don’t seem to have the usual cooking energy and five minutes of active prep works for me.

I’ve been having a harder time with cakes because I have a three cupper and cakes need a wider area like a five cupper. What a great excuse for a new rice cooker.

Here is what I’ve been working on.

20120724-015010.jpg
Pineapple Curry Chicken

20120724-015121.jpg
Roast beef

20120724-015157.jpg
Daikon and chicken in a gochujang sauce

The Feast Part One: Erigi Wrapped in Beef

Since I’m moving house this weekend we had a final feast at our house with the in-laws and an elderly couple in the neighborhood last weekend.

I’ll be posting more recipes in the coming week but here is one of the things I made.  According to the dictionary eringi are king trumpet mushrooms or king oyster mushrooms.  I use eringi in this post because I first encountered them in Japan and they are eringi in my brain.

Eringi Wrapped in Beef

Kyou no Ryouri Beginners 2008.1 p.76

8 large shavings of beef (about 150 grams)

4 eringi (about 200 grams)

1/2 teaspoon sake

1/2 teaspoon soy sauce

1 1/2 tablespoon soy sauce

1/2 tablespoon sake

1/2 tablespoon sugar

1/2 tablespoon mirin

1 tablespoon salad oil

Sprinkle the beef with 1/2 teaspoon each of sake and soy sauce and let sit for five minutes.  While you are waiting, mix up the rest of the soy sauce, sake, sugar and mirin in a small bowl.  Wrap two pieces of beef around each eringi.  Put the oil in a frying pan and heat up over medium heat.  Put the mushrooms in, fry, and when the beef changes color, add the sauce.  Simmer on medium heat, turning the mushrooms, until they are cooked.  Serve hot.

Shepard’s Pie

Earlier this week my friend and I had Irish movie night and I decided to make something from the UK for dinner.  I have always been a fan of Shepard’s pie and thought this was the perfect opportunity despite the soaring temperatures.  I usually make it the North American way – using beef as the meat of choice.  I added a bit of dill seed this time for a little different flavor and was thoroughly impressed.

Shepard’s PieShepard's Pie

1kg potatoes, peeled and cut into smallish pieces for boiling

200g ground beef/pork mix (it’s hard to find just ground beef in the sticks of Japan)

1 small onion, diced

1 1/2 cups mixed frozen vegetables (I sometimes use spinach instead)

200mL gravy

1tsp dill seed

salt and pepper to taste

1tbsp butter

splash of milk

Potatoes – Boil the potatoes, drain and mash.  Add the butter first and mix until melted.  Add a bit of milk to make creamy.  Set aside.

Meat – brown meat and onion in frying pan. Season with salt, pepper and dill seed.  When finished, turn down heat to low and add gravy.  Simmer until thickened and the dill seed is fragrant.

Preheat the oven to 200C or 400F.

Lightly oil the sides of a glass casserole dish (the meat will likely not stick but the potatoes may).  Put the meat and gravy in the bottom of the dish, next add the vegetables and top with potatoes, smoothing the top with a spatula.  Some people add more butter on top so the potatoes brown really nicely.  I don’t but often sprinkle some paprika on top.

Bake for 30min or until it bubbles.  Put under the broiler to brown the top of the potatoes, if desired.  Let sit for about five minutes before serving.

Variation

Instead of using regular gravy I often make miso gravy.  I generally take a couple of tablespoons of miso, mix with a bit of water (keep it thick) and add it to the meat.  I would skip the dill seed in this case too.