Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Using your noodle. . .

In winter, my starch of choice is always mashed potatoes, but in the summer there' s nothing quicker and more comforting than a good bowl of noodles. I'm currently craving soba noodles, perhaps because they taste so darn good, hot or cold. Boil them up, add some cooked chicken, green onions, a dash of soy sauce and a sprinkling of toasted sesame seeds and I'm in heaven.
But I'm ready to expand my Asian noodle universe and so I'm having fun making my way through Noodle Comfort by Kentaro Kobayashi. With chapters devoted to a variety of noodles including Chinese, udon, yakisoba, pho, rice vermicelli and even traditional pasta, this cookbook is providing me with lots of different sauce and flavouring options, along with some good cooking tips. For example, I didn't know that if you are going to chill your noodles, you need to cook them slightly longer as they firm up when soaked in ice water. There are also instructions for making your own noodles from scratch, should you have the time. Design wise, it's not the most polished cookbook you'll ever come across, but there are decent photos for all of the dishes and it does give substitutions for some of the Japanese ingredients if you can't find them in your local supermarket. If you live in a major urban centre, you shouldn't have any problems.
It's part of a new Easy Japanese Cooking series from Vertical Press. Other titles include Donburi Mania, devoted to dishes over rice, and coming soon will be Bento Love, Veggie Haven and Appetizer Rex.

No comments: