Culinary Photo Story of Kuwait
Each of these picture tell a story of my time in Kuwait up until this point. I will add more photos as they come along. I have put short description below some of the picture so you can get some sort of an idea what the mean. Only thing that could have possibly made this whole experience more rewording is if there was someone to enjoy them with me. Hope you enjoy having a look though all of these and keep an eye out for more post tonight.
Japonaise, the first thing that might come to mind is whether its origins is based from Japan. It would be a good guess as "Japonaise" in French does mean "Japan" or "From Japan". But in this case there is no direct connection between this Meringue and Japan. So I decided to play around with this confusing yet interesting meringue and made it more Japanese. The way this idea come about was when I was asked to come up with new desserts for the menu at work. As I am working in a Japanese Restaurant I remembered this meringue from back in college. I think it stood out too me because I also first though it would have come from Japan or at least have some sort of Japanese history behind it. At first there was only one popular Japanese ingredient I wanted to incorporate, matcha. Matcha is the Japanese name for finely milled green tea leafs which have recently exploded into a huge hype, similar to that of Red Velvet.
The taste of good quality macha for me would be similar to that of seaweed or rather you would pick up some sort of "ocean taste" or "fishy taste" as some people say. This is what we who believe in the term umami could call umami. The meaning of umami when all your taste sensations are stimulated at the same time. This includes sweet, sour, bitter and salt
The other truly Japanese ingredient I wanted to incorporate is know as Anko, which is Azuki beans (red beans) which have been cooked till soft and then pureed. It is then sweetened and used in many traditional Japanese pastries. The way I would incorporate this unique flavour into my dessert is simple. I would start by making my own anko, this way you can control the sweetness and don't have to worry about it being over or under the desired sweetness. I would then incorporate it into a Diplomat Cream. Diplomat cream is the combination of whipped cream and creme Pastissiere. This would give you a good smooth and light texture which would go well with the slightly crunchy meringue. I have yet to experiment with this as I have not yet had the opportunity.
So now that you know a bit more about Japonaise and the two major ingredients in Japanese pastry world, Im now going to give you the Recipe for Japonaise. Once I have the chance to try the filling I will then also post that recipe, but for now I will just provide you with my first filling attempt.
160C/320F for 8-10 minute
This is just for you to first perfect the plain Japonaise and then later this week I will place the Filling Recipe as well as the Transfer Paste which allows you to make different patterns on the meringue. Its also in the Transfer paste which I used the matcha, so don't get confused if you don't see it in the recipe.
Published By: Chef Kwame
After spending half the day in bed catching up on some Grey's Anatomy, I got a call from a fellow chef inviting me for late lunch at this new Japanese Restaurant Called ORA. So I decided to do little research about the place. Interesting, I must say.... ORA had'nt even opened it doors and yet it was already a hit on instagram and the rest of the Kuwait social media community. But that was not what I wanted to know though. As a Chef myself, when a new place opens, I'm more interested in the people behind the scenes than the name, but thats a story for another day ;-)
The Food and Drinks
Fast forward, we get there... And I must say myself, I was sold from the moment we entered the door. The dining area was spacious, clean, and very welcoming to say the least. We had a look at the menu and it had more lots of beatiful dishes to choose, from Cold Tapas, Hot Tapas, Salads, Sigiture Sushi Rolls, Donburi's ( A Japanese "rice bowl dish" consisting of fish, meat, vegetables or other ingredients simmered together and served over rice), Dessert and finally Fresh Mocktails....
So in the blistering heat, I decided to kick things off with their Ginger & Lemon Ice Tea
From Hot Tapas I had the Tiger Creamy Shrimp.
Signature Sushi Rolls we tried the ORA Crispy Roll
Crispy Rice with Tuna
Robata Grilled Lobster
Aslo tried thier Fresh Water Melon Juice
Cinnamon Bred Pudding (My flavourate*****) and Homemade Ice Cream
The place is beautiful! From the fresh flowers on the table, to the chilled out music playing in the background and the wierd but awesome art piece they have mounted on the wall. You can't help not notice such things. The food as well is on its own level... Nothing out of the ordinary for me but definately something to try out when you are craving for something new and fresh. I must warn you though, the place is a bit pricey and some of the portions are a bit below par.
Other than that I liked the place on a once off basis. So i'm giving ORA a 4* seal of approval.
Want to try it out? Swing by at Arabella Mall and check the place out
Being exposed to a wide range of new ingredients and products, I have decided to share a few of these amazing new products. Most of these products are widely used in Asian Cuisine and can only be found in certain stores that specialise in Asian Cuisine. I have included the traditional name as well as a rough translation of what each item actually is. As time goes on and I become more familiar with these ingredients I will post some of my own recipes. So keep an eye out for those in the next month or so. Hope you all learn something new and put it to use next time you make a Asian fest for your Family or friend. Or even if you just able to identify those ingredients you never knew on the menu at you favourite Asian restaurant.
Akita Komachi Rice:
This is one of two Japonica medium-grain rice, which is favoured for making sushi and other dishes which include sticky rice. It is not only cultivated in Japan, but also in California, and many other American States.
Arborio rice was named after the town in Italy where it is grown. Arborio is located in the Po Valley. This round-grain medium length rice is actually more of a tan colour than pure white, it also has a distinctive white dot in the center of the grain. This grain has the ability to absorb great amounts of liquid and in doing so can take on loads of flavour. Once cooked it has a creamy texture (this is due to its high starch content) with a chewy center (al dente) and is mostly used for risotto. I was told by my Chef at College that a good risotto should not take more or less than 20 minutes.
Baldo rice is a rice which was created by crossing Arborio rice and the Stripe 136 rice variety. This made Baldo rice high in starch (which made it stickier than most other rice varieties used for risotto) and allowed it to cook faster and keep its plump shape at high cooking temperatures. These characteristics made it popular amongst chefs, using it instead of the traditional Arborio. It is also the favourite rice used in Turkish Cuisine, included in risotto like dishes, and can also be used in other applications.
It is also of the Japonica variety, and is classified as a super fine rice.
It is mainly grown in Turkey, Italy as well as Vietnam
This centuries old long-grain, slender rice has been cultivated at the foot of the Himalayas in Pakistan and India. The word Basmati in Hindi when literally translated means "pearl of scents" or "queen of scents" due to its aromatic aroma when cooked. This rice is non-glutinous and separates once cooked. When cooked it also only swells length wise. It has been exported to Arab countries for centuries, where it is used in rich aromatic dishes.
When cooking this rice the ratio of rice to water is 1 part rice 2 parts water.
Always wash off the rice, then place on a high heat with the water. Once it starts to boil, time it for 5 minutes then cover with tight fitting lid and turn off the heat completely. Leave covered for 20 minutes and have perfect rice every time.
Bhutanese Red Rice:
This beautiful rusty brown red coloured rice is also grown in the Himalayas, but it is grown 8,000 feet above sea level ( 2438.4 meters). The name is some what named ofter the place where it is cultivated, which is the Himalaya Kingdom of Bhudan. It is said that the rice is irrigated (watered) by a 1,000 year old glacier which is rich in trace minerals, which gives it its earthy and nutty flavour. Once cooked, it has a soft texture and has a slightly pinker appearance. Bhatanese red rice is the staple of the Kingdom.
Black Rice (Forbidden rice):
The term forbidden rice comes from when the Chinese Emperors were the only ones allowed to consume this unique black rice. It is a non-glutinous rice unlike other varieties from Asia. It has a deep nutty taste as well as hints of chocolate in it, making this the perfect rice to cook on valentines day. This rice is not just special because of its black appearance when raw and deep purple appearance once cooked but because it is high in fiber, amino acids as well as vitamins and minerals such as magnesium, potassium and iron.
Research has also shown that it benefits your eyes, kidneys, spleen and stomach.
Edited by: Monique Boaventura
So what can you expect from me Chef Dewet in 2014.
Well I'm not sure if I have mentioned that I'm heading to Kuwait to go work there, but my visa has just recently arrived (supper excited about it) and the first 2 months I wont be able to post as frequently as I'm used too.
But with that being said, I'm now going on a totally new culinary Journey where I'll be learning a lot more from the Local Kuwait cuisine, as well as my favourite cuisine, Japanese.
I will be working for a Japanese restaurant in Kuwait (unfortunately I can not tell you guys the name of the restaurant) and I'll be starting at the bottom, working my way up. In my opinion this is the best way to learn a cuisine, from the roots all the way to the highest branch. At this restaurant I will get to learn how to prepare sushi as well as other traditional Japanese dishes. So with my surroundings inspiring my recipes I post and the articles I write, you can expect more Japanese style recipes.
But I also believe in learning about the country I'm staying in and exploring their local cuisine, so I will also definitely be posting authentic Kuwaiti recipes on my website.
I'm also looking at posting video blogs where I can actually show you how I prepare the complete recipe, as I know a lot of people are visual learners.
So that's what you can expect from me in a nut shell.
I am planning on posting at least once a week, which will be on my off days, and as I get back into a normal routine I'll start posting more per week! But the quality of my posts will be maintained and I will not slack on that!
Edited by: Monique Boaventura
I always get asked what is my favourite dish too cook(one of the questions most if not all chefs hate to answer) , and I always tell the people that there are so many dishes I truly enjoy preparing. But lately I find that I really lean towards making this dish. It has all the aspects of a truly great dish. The freshness from the ginger and coriander , to the depth of flavour of the fish sauce and soya sauce. It also has great texture form the al dente vegetable to the soft egg noodles. There is a carbohydrate, vegetable, sauce, protein and garnish present in the dish wish are all components I was taught to have on a dish.
I have not plated this dish in a "Fine Dining" style yet, but when I make it again I will plate one plate and upload pictures. But for now i will just give you my recipe ( not all ingredients are exact quantities as I add or take out as I go along).
This should easily feed 6 people
Prep-time: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 30 minutes
Enjoy, and play around with the veg you have available to you, try and stick with seasonal vegetables as you know its fresh and not as likely to have been imported.
For more pictures on how i presented this dish click on the button below
List of Flowers that can be used when plating dishes:
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I'm a chef at heart and by trade, enjoy what I do and have a passion for the culinary world.