All recipes are for 2 servings unless noted. Oil is canola oil and salt is kosher salt.


Breakfast, May 14, 2012

The weather has been sunny and warm lately, and my body seems to retain too much heat even early in the morning. Something cool, along with other simple dishes, seemed a good choice for breakfast.

  • Rice
  • Miso soup with daikon radish and toasted soybeans, topped with julienned rapini
  • Hiyayakko, warabi to kinoko no amakara shoyuzuke-nose / soft tofu with bracken and mushrooms marinated in lightly sweetened spicy soy sauce
  • Piiman no gomaae / green pepper with coarsely ground sesame seed dressing
  • Fuki no okakani / Japanese butterbur in light broth with bonito flakes
  • Nira-iri tamagoyaki / omelet with garlic chives
  • Grape tomatoes
Hiyayakko, a quick soft tofu dish with condiments and soy sauce, came to mind first. We still have warabi bracken and mushrooms marinated in lightly sweetened spicy soy sauce in the fridge, which would be a good topping instead of the typical ginger and sliced green onion.

Fuki or Japanese butterbur marinated in weak broth is reheated with bonito flakes as a final touch. Fuki is a vegetable Tom does not really like. There must be a way to convince him that it tastes good. Pairing with strong-flavored ingredients such as bonito flakes should do the trick.

Even so, the fuki dish would not taste distinctive enough, as fuki has a high moisture content; something different with a slightly richer flavor is wanted.
Gomaae is an easy choice. Instead of tahini, I grind toasted sesame seeds for a lighter result. Blanched green pepper gives a succulent texture that further lightens the dish. It is richer than the fuki dish, but not overly so.
Another dish on the rich end is tamagoyaki omelet. Nira garlic chives go really well with eggs, and I add them for extra aroma and flavor.

Now what's missing is something firm ...  and there's no soup. I can go without soup, but Tom tends to choke without it. A quick miso soup with sliced daikon radish and toasted soybeans will take care of both these needs. 

The silky hiyayakko was very nice. The coolness of the tofu was pleasant. The fuki dish turned out well. Bonito flakes do work as bait; Tom actually liked it. Tamagoyaki with nira and green pepper gomaae were both satisfying, as expected.

To my surprise, Tom finished the breakfast before I did. I give him more than me on each plate, and with my chopstick maneuvering skills I usually finish mine first.
Did I put more soybeans in my soup bowl?
Or did he swallow the soybeans without chewing? If that's the case, my intention to make him enjoy something crunchy didn't work, and I need to put something bigger that he needs to chew before swallowing next time Why bother? He just reaches for a bagged snack for the "crunch" after a meal when feels that a crunchy texture was missing, and that’s really annoying -- it is better to take preventative measures.

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