Mie has been suggesting since the beginning that I make cooking a dish one of my 52 things. I pretty much never cook anymore, partly because I was never that big into cooking at home and partly because Mie is a superb cook. I figured I should do this for her as a nod toward her long standing efforts and achievements in the Yaginuma kitchen.
I had to make it special though, something of a challenge. Marie had given us a cookbook called The Artful Vegan: Fresh Flavors from the Millennium Restaurant. This is one of the best restaurants here in San Francisco, and the recipes are daunting. So much so that even Mie had never attempted any of them. I picked an appetizer, Sesame-Crusted Oyster Mushroom Calamari over Burdock Kimpira. I had to make two sauces, the burdock kimipra, and then the batter and the fried oyster mushrooms. It took two hours altogether, but I think I could cut that down almost in half whenever I try it again. As far as execution goes, the feedback indicated it tasted great and I definitely enjoyed it. I think I probably earned a D grade really though. I feel I can get that up to a C or B next time.
Here's the list of ingredients: sesame oil, burdock roots, carrots, fresh ginger, minced garlic (I skipped this as Mie can't deal anymore), unrefined sugar, tamari (we used soy sauce), sesame seeds, rice flour, corn flour, Japanese chile powder, salt, oyster mushrooms, soy milk, canola oil, dried wasabi powder, silken tofu, rice vinegar, water, dark molasses, star anise, peppercorn, rehydrated seaweed, fresh scallions, lime. That's like 25 things! It was kind of crazy.
Mie has photos and such on Kokochi.