Thursday, February 18, 2010

Culinary Olympics Day 2

Day 2 of Culinary Olympics. Being daunted already by even the thought of 82 countries. I think I’ve lost it. I was able to make dishes for three Asian countries.

Dish: Mongolian Beef
Country: Mongolia, Duh!
Weight: 6 ounces
Dimensions: Variant in nature, a 1 inch high, 5 inch wide blob
Score: 4.6

Dish: Spring Onion Flat Bread
Country: Taiwan
Weight: 18 ounces
Dimnsions: ¼ inch thick, 6 inch diameter
Score: 5.0

Dish: Japanese Cucumber pickle salad
Country: Uhh, Japan
Weight: 4 ounces
Dimensions: 3 inches deep, 4 inches wide in bowl
Score: 4.9

So only three countries this time. I had wanted to do Dan Ta (Custard Tart ) for Hong Kong and trying to find a North Korean recipe. Yah, they don’t exist. I could only find comments on how the food tasted in North Korea by a visiting Guilo. If anyone out there has an authentic North Korean recipe please let me know.

Countries I made. All in all the scores were high. My greatest success, the onion flatbread. A thin layer of toasted Korean sesame oil (I only use Korean, I am a sesame oil snob) rolled into each round flatbread with a sprinkling of green onion. Like heaven to eat, and we ended up doing Asian style tacos by putting the beef in the bread. I love Asian style tacos. My fave- Bulgolgi, Onion/Carrot/Zuchinni sautéed in Korean sesame oil with a little sea salt, Kimchi, Spring Onion Korean Spicy Salad, Cilantro, Korean toasted sesame seeds piled high on a shell fried in . . you guessed it, Korean sesame oil. That stuff is like a fine wine to me. I could take it straight in shots like whisky!

Sunday, February 14, 2010

My Culinary Olympic Challenge / Day 1

82 Countries
82 Recipes
16 Days

Can it be done? I hope so. Will I go crazy in the attempt and start acting like a vicious blood sucking bunny? Maybe.
It’s two in the morning and I’m still making lists and compiling recipes. I’m driven. I’m obsessed. I hope this stays with me to the end. It’s the second day of Olympic events, third counting opening ceremony, and so far I’ve produced 5 dishes, and ticked off 5 countries. South Korea, Nepal, India, Pakistan, and Iran. So far the key here is to stay focused and keep the dishes simple but delicious. Here are the profiles for my first dishes:

Dish: Kalbi Short Ribs
Country: South Korea
Weight: 1.1 Pounds
Dimensions: ¼ inch thick by 10 inches long
Score: 4.9

Dish: Carrot Pudding
Country: Nepal
Weight: ½ Pound
Dimensions: 1 and ½ inches deep in pot
Score: 3.7

Dish: Chicken Curry with Sliced Apples
Country: India
Weight: 1.6 Pounds
Dimensions: 4 inches deep
Score: 4. 7

Dish: Chapati
Country: Pakistan
Weight: 6 oz.
Dimensions: 5 inches in Diameter
Score: 3.9

Dish: Milky Mash Potatoes
Country: Iran
Weight: 1.2 pounds
Dimensions: 6 inches long
Score: 4.3

It's looking good so far. Curry and Kalbi came through with flying colors, and the Potatoes and Chapati were a close second, with Carrot Pudding trailing in at last. My chapati was a little chewy, but the toastyness ( yes I make words up) made up for it. The curry was a roaring success, and I will definitely be making it again. Please stay tuned for the next countries' dishes, and let me know what you think of my challenge.