Sunday, November 1, 2009

Chinese Feast watched over by Pete and Peg and the Rotary Boys

Here is some of the feast Xiaosong prepared in my little kitchen with whatever I had at hand after he got all the right ingredients at the Hopkins Shanghai Store. Lucky I found the corn starch, as he says "everybody cooks with corn starch"!
So as we get ready to feast, rice is prepared on our two large plates with Black Mushrooms (Lentinula edodes, commonly known as the Shiitake) According to Wiki "In Chinese, it is called xiānggū (香菇, literally "fragrant mushroom"). Two Chinese variant names for high grades of shiitake are dōnggū (Chinese: 冬菇, "winter mushroom") and huāgū (花菇, "flower mushroom", which has a flower-like cracking pattern on the mushroom's upper surface); both are produced at colder temperatures" Cooked with baby bok choy on the new plates Denise Martineau gifted me. Tofu and eggplant sauteed.
In the back bowl what we called in Japanese edamame . Per wikipedia
"edamame (枝豆?) is commonly used in some English-speaking countries to refer to the dish. The Japanese name literally means "twig bean" (eda = "twig" + mame = "bean"), and is a reference to the short stem attached to the pod. This term originally referred to young soybeans in general. Over time, however, the prevalence of the salt-boiled preparation meant that the term edamame now often refers specifically to this dish. Since this is a Chinese event I am learning:
In Chinese, young soybeans are known as maodou (Chinese: 毛豆; pinyin: máodòu; literally "hairy bean"). Young soybeans in the pod are known as maodoujia (Chinese: 毛豆荚; pinyin: máodòujiá; literally "hairy bean pod"). Because boiling in the pod is the usual preparation for young soybeans, the dish is usually identified via a descriptive name, such as "boiled maodou", or "salt-boiled maodou", depending on the condiments added, but like in Japan, simply saying the name of the bean, maodou, in a Chinese restaurant will produce salt-flavored, boiled maodou." Fun to have the clean white beans eaten from the hairy pods! Steve used Sichuan pepper (or Szechuan pepper From Wiki "The outer pod of the tiny fruit of a number of species in the genus Zanthoxylum (most commonly Z. piperitum, Z. simulans, and Z. schinifolium), widely grown and consumed in Asia as a spice. Despite the name, it is not related to black pepper or to chili peppers. " I think it is related to our prickly ash, also a Zanthoxylum ("yellow wood:) species with a fragrant fruit. Love those fragrant fruits!

Lastly are the boiled raw peanuts in a bowl, eaten like the maodou (do it like Mao?) as an appetizer. Wow I really enjoyed seeing this done with Sichuan Pepper and star anise. He used whole anise and then had to fish them out. ! FUN

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