Tuesday, August 25, 2009


Terri asked me to include a little bit about the eating habits in our house and my adventure in cooking. Well, as I've said before, I don't really like to cook. And I have a husband that doesn't get home until 10:00 or 11:00 so even when I do cook, we don't have quiet dinners together. I usually eat alone and squeeze it in between evening classes. Dinnertime is not my favorite time of day.

But occasionally I feel I have to justify all the dishes I have collected, or I think we really ought to eat healthier and then I spend some time in my kitchen. Of course the dang kitchen is so small with ZERO counter space that it makes it difficult to get enthusiastic about going in there but it has the basics... (except for counters).

So this was dinner the other night. It was sort of an experiment.

I reused the curry that we had eaten the night before and added more potatoes, carrots, eggplant and bouillon and made a simple curry soup. Tasted the same as the night before only thinner.

Then I experimented with some GOYA that one of my students had brought me a couple days before.

Goya is also called a bitter gourd and it is definitely bitter! I think this is a vegetable from Okinawa the southernmost string of islands in Japan which has a tropical climate. Until a few years ago I'd never seen goya but now it can be purchased in any supermarket. It seems to be easy to grow because farmers will often hand me a goya as I walk by their fields.

Unfortunately Tetsu does not like goya. If you cook it too much it becomes mushy. If you don't cook it enough it is so bitter you are tempted to spit it out! In Okinawa it is served with pork and tofu and eggs but we've already eaten that this week so I had to think of another recipe using goya.

First I thickly sliced the goya into rounds and dug out the pulp and seeds (the most bitter part). Then I boiled the goya in salt water. Next I mixed up ground meat, chopped onions, salt and pepper, an egg and leftover canned corn and "stuffed" the goya rounds. And floured the rounds and sauteed them in olive oil. They were lacking something so when they were finished cooking I splashed on the ever present soy sauce. Goya mini hamburgers. Not too bad.

Let's see, what else did we have. Cold tofu with soy sauce. A few sauteed mini-tomatoes just because they were wrinkling in the crisper. Some fresh edamame. And rice. I guess that was dinner.

I try to vary my menus so that some nights we are eating western style, maybe spaghetti or something, but either way dinner is never very exciting...

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