Coffee, Ear Ache, and Rabbit Holes

Well, I still have my ear infection and the progress is going very slowly. I don’t ever have them so it’s a pain in the ass to manage. Still, docs are on it.

I do have coffee and life is good. I also had a black “mink” blanket I used to cover my sore knees but apparently a Badger needed it more. Said Badger is quite comfortable apparently. Also, he gives no fucks.

Now it’s no surprise … or it shouldn’t be… that I love cooking shows. Usually competitions (but not Cut throat Kitchen for personal reasons… actually no, I don’t like Alton Brown but that’s a personal choice… he’s too much of a hipster asshole to people and that irritates.)

I used to like him but he’s gotten meaner over the years and I wince at it. I don’t like that kind of sarcastic to do damage and sneering kind of behaviour. Also, see my dislike of Gordan Ramsey. And that Bar Rescue guy. But that just could be how they’ve groomed his appearance. It’s very much like that guy living down your street in Brooklyn who wants you to think he’s “connected to a Family” when in fact, his mom is more kick ass than he is.

Hopefully, that’s their “persona” but… yea, do not like. Of course, not like they’re staying up at night, awake and worried about what I think. Hell, they are what they sold me… paraphrased from TOOL.

I digress. This was supposed to be about Rabbit Holes and cooking. Because you know what I really love? Long videos of Japanese hole in the wall to bustling restaurants showing their kitchens and a day in the life of working there. I have no idea why but it is a soothing thing to watch yet another place make udon noodles. Or dashi. I’m there for it.

And if you are as well, here is a ktasudon place that looks fantastic!

California, Rain, and Shoyu Chicken

It’s been a long long week and oh, most of it has to deal with medical stuff but let’s not go there.

Instead, let’s talk about other stuff.

We’ve had a shit load of rain here lately and while I love it, up North has had some huge storms and it’s a bit dangerous out there for people. So if you’re up in the very flooded parts of California, please stay safe and dry. And think about those who are outside of shelter. If you’re able to donate towels, bedding and socks to your local shelters, they would appreciate it.

I made shoyu chicken tonight for dinner. In a bag in the oven. Now I do like doing bagged oven chicken but normally it’s more of a savory tomato base. Not too much sauce but enough to coat or a dry rub that mingles well with the chicken juices. There’s something about those natural gravies when they go on top of rice. Okay, to be fair, one of my favourite foods is rice and some kind of gravy or sauce. Hell, even rice and kimchi is a great lunch / dinner.

And oddly enough, if I’m not feeling well, rice and kimchi or hot sauce soothes my nerves and stomach. Probably can blame my mom for eating a lot of kimchi when she was pregnant with me. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

My fridge kimchi / kim chee recipe for a quick easy non-fermented kim chee.

Yes I know I flip the spelling. It’s been 50-50 with me since it’s been spelled in different ways during my life time. I’m not married to one or the other so, choose your own adventure there.

Not much else is going on. I have a piece I have to write for an anthology and the ideas are there so hopefully I can get words onto the page!

AND we’re in the Year of the Bunny so… WOOOOT!


Food. And How To Make Some.

I shared this PDF I cobbled together with my Facebook group but I couldn’t remember if I shared it here. If not, well then… here’s a PDF of some of the local-style stuff that comes out of my kitchen.

Or will come again out of my kitchen once they’re done chopping me into different pieces. Man, I miss cooking.

Rhys Ford Recipes

And yes, the Fried Rice recipe is in there.

Char Siu and a bit of Rambling…

I’ve got one week or so left before my hopefully last surgery. Seriously, I just wanna get back to sitting in traffic, paying too much for gas, and complaining about people in the Starbucks drive thru. Hopefully that will happen soon. I’m also sick of this whole thing dominating my life so I’ve spent the last few days working on projects and well, God, does my brain hurt.

So let’s talk about char siu. Possibly one of my favourite dishes in the world, especially when made into manapua / char siu bao. There’s just something about the sweet savoury pork and the yeasty steamed bread that hits the spot. Or even just a good glaze heavy char siu on rice. It’s fairly easy to make but oh, everyone has their own version. I highly recommend following Made WIth Lau. I do not follow the leave it out for 8 hours method but I do recommend letting it sit in the fridge then let it get to room temp before cooking. Also, sugar syrup for the last baste and if you are looking for red fermented bean curd, it CAN be purchased at many Asian online markets and even Amazon.


Writing et al. Or etm. And a recipe for Shoyu Chicken

I keep gathering up the brain cells to get stuff down on paper. I also have to finish rereading Bound so I know where to go from there. I’ve got bits and pieces of things started so I have plot lines at the ready and all I need is for my brain to show up. Which hopefully soon.

Surgery day is set for Aug 17.

But writing has to happen before then. It truly is a habit that has to be hammered at every day. It’s too easy to let a bit of writing fall to the wayside and then you fall out of practice even if your mind isn’t ghosting off in some other realm. I don’t mind it wandering outwards… my brain that is… so long as it brings back good material.

Mine is like a goofy cat that brings its owners’ a leaf and claims that they’ve hunted and killed it.

I hope everyone has been staying cool or warm … depending on where you are. It’s cooled off here nicely and the house i sopened up. A lovely breeze is coming thru and well, we have had a late night skunk waft every once in a while. But all in all, still lovely.

And apparently the Tribal People eat another one of my people’s foods… Shoyu Chicken. I haven’t seen it yet but I imagine there might be some conflict with their palates. I could be wrong. Depends on who makes the shoyu chicken. I’ll include my recipe for shoyu chicken after the video. 😀

Hilo Shoyu Chicken

  • 1/2 cup dried shiitake mushrooms or to taste. If large and whole, cut into slices
  • 4 (1/2-inch thick) slices of peeled ginger or 6 T of shredded frozen ginger
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 cup shoyu (soy sauce)
  • 1 cup brown sugar or 1 1/2 white sugar
  • 5 pounds chicken thighs
  • Sliced green onions for garnish

Brown chicken then add rest of ingredients. Bring to boil, then simmer for 30-45 minutes. Serve over rice.



Dinner Last Night: Congee or Juk (depending on where you’re from)

One of the best things to eat when it’s cold or rainy or you’re feeling miserable is congee. Our family calls it juk / jook but congee works too.

I’ve eaten a bit of restaurant congee which is always lovely but I haven’t made any in a while. So tonight, it is time for a very thick rice porridge with LOTS of ginger. With tofu, fresh shitake mushrooms and bamboo shoots… of course green onion.

It does hit the spot.


I’ve been working on editing something to put back out and I’d forgotten how time consuming editing is. Reading things over, making sure the words are right. Discovering I apparently biffed spelling satisfaction in such a way Word didn’t even know what language I was in. Such is the way of the writer.

San Diego’s been getting warmer this week. We always have odd winters. Next week it’ll be cold again. I’m hoping for rain. Rain is always welcome.

I’d been scheduled for an outpatient procedure at the end of January and after a consultation on that day, the procedure was called off and instead, I get to go into surgery in the hopes that it will help fix things quicker. Not a major thing. In and out. One day only. Like a drive thru oil change.

I do have to remember to tell my mother about it. I’ve not yet. Just slipped my brain. But it’s not till the end of March so, not too bad.

Cooking more which has been fun. Tonight is stew. Since Andi my roommate is currently forgoing meat, I’ve been doing dual meals… sometimes I’ll do the vegetarian route and we have one dish or I make two of the same dish. Tonight I made Irish beef stew for me and Japanese curry stew for them. Well sort of a Japanese curry stew. I kind of went roasted veggies when making it, much to the chagrin of my ancestors but hopefully it’s got a good curry punch. *grins*

The vegetarian curry stew is made with Gardein beef tips. We’ll see how they do. They held up well for the browning. You’re supposed to add them into your dish last but I let it sit in the curry after browning so hopefully it would pick up some of the curry flavour.

Irish Beef Stew
Japanese curry stew

I’ll have more info on the novella that’s being released again in a bit. My brain is very much overloaded with words right now. And the dog is snoring. Everyone stay safe and don’t forget to take care of one another.