top of page
  • Writer's pictureRyan Yoo

Extra Long Edition: Weeks 5 - 9

Welcome back! It's been a pretty busy month, so I didn't write a post in a while, but I've still been composting!

Week 5 - More appetizers

Top: Pork and Pepper Pies Right: Beef Skewers Left: Tofu Cakes with Mango Ketchup

The pork and pepper pies were pretty dry and overcooked. Our filling was definitely not moist enough. We didn't braise or cook the pork filling in any liquid, so it wasn't that tender either.

I liked the beef skewers about as much as I liked the pies. It was not super high quality meat, so it was really chewy. The sauce next to it was Thai-inspired, and it was decent. Making the sauce was also fun: tasting and adjusting every part of it till I was satisfied. It made me think that being a saucier would be enjoyable.

The star of this week was surprisingly the mango ketchup. It honestly was not a ketchup consistency, more like a preserve or jam, but it tasted great! The tofu cakes we smeared it on were not however. I don't know who thought it would be a good idea to pair a sweet jam with tofu cakes, but it was not my jam. The mushroom that the recipe called for was also a weird choice to me. The mango ketchup actually went best with the pork and pepper pies.

Week 6 - Sausage

Chicken Apple Sausage, Tomato-cream Sauce, Focaccia

First time making sausages! I don't know if the sausage stuffer on our stand mixers are slow, but the filling we inserted into the stand mixers came out of the sausage stuffer so slowly. Other than that, it was a pretty fun process. We had to clean out the intestine casing which was quite the experience.

All of our sausages burst when we cooked them, so I think next time we will poke a lot of holes before cooking to allow the steam to escape. This was a chill week though; we made two sausage fillings (one we saved for the following week), tomato sauce, and focaccia.

This was one of the best things we've made so far. The focaccia was freshly baked and had a nice flavor and texture (a tad overbaked). The sausage was nicely seasoned and savory, and the tomato sauce had the same savory quality as the sausage. The only criticism was that everything on the plate was pale besides the leaf of sage we put on top.

Week 7 - Smoked and cured meats

Smoked Tea Chicken, Cajun Sausage Potato Hash, Everything Bagel and Salmon Gravlax

The smoked tea chicken looked a lot better than it tasted. Our makeshift smoker (a perforated hotel pan on top of a nonperforated one) wasn't the best; the wood chips kept going out and we had to reignite them often. The smoke flavor kind of came through. We made a little salad to put in the middle to offset the fattiness of the chicken. Overall, this was okay.

The potato hash was better than the chicken in my opinion. I did cut the ingredients way too big, so they took a while to cook. Hence, I underestimated how long it would take to cook, so I didn't start cooking them as soon as I had the chance to (I should have). The Cajun sausage also burst when we cooked it. We smoked it first, and I thought it would cook the sausage a bit, but it did in the least bit, so it fell apart as I tried to cut it into slices. I eventually sauteed it a little before cutting it into slices. The sausage was the best part of this dish: spicy, savory, in my stomach.

This bagel and gravlax looked pretty good, but it was similar to the other dishes: mid. The bagel was stored overnight, and after we toasted it, it was really hard and chewy. The gravlax is a cured salmon, which turned out so salty to the point that it masked most of the other ingredient's flavor in my opinion. The mustard sauce drizzled on top didn't help with the saltiness. Overall, this dish was hard to eat, salty, and I don't want to eat it again. I imagine salmon lox is a bit less salty than gravlax since so many people like it, but I haven't had it myself.

Week 8 - Cheese

Elote with Queso Blanco, Paneer on Pita, Pizza

Another first: making cheese (basically curdling milk and collecting the solids). The cheese actually turned out really well. I worked on the paneer, and it's treated similarly to tofu since it doesn't melt (I don't know the science behind it, but it did not melt at all). It had a very mild flavor, and it was made by curdling milk with lemon juice. The paneer and onion medley tasted great on top of the pita we made. The pita was nice and soft, complimenting the spiced paneer topping.

The mozzarella we made was really salty, but tasted good. I did not have time to eat the pizza we made, and my friend took it home. He said it was really doughy. We should have definitely shaped it thinner anyways since we were low on time and it would've cooked faster that way.

The elote was my favorite recipe from this week. We slathered way too much mayo which made the queso blanco overly moist, but other than that it was great. I charred it over an open flame (I honestly could not taste any grilled flavor on it though). The queso blanco was pretty mild like the paneer, but broke apart easily unlike the paneer. The simple ingredients paired well with each other and tasted great.

Week 9 - Tempura and Udon

Udon Salad, Kabocha Squash Tempura, Shrimp Tempura

This was the first week of testing our recipe for our final project/test! My group is making an udon noodle salad topped with tempura. The first day we tested our tempura, it was extremely cakey and did not look like tempura at all. The following day, I didn't add egg to the batter and added a lot more starch. It turned out really well and maintained it's crispness for a long time!

The noodles were just alright. We were only able to test it once this week because we had to rest it overnight. They were cut too thick as well, so after we boiled them, they were still dense and underdone in the middle. The sauce was quite good though: spicy and umami. We combined chili crisp with ponzu sauce (the usual sauce for cold udon).

It was a nice 5 weeks of class! I'm excited for the project we are testing our recipes for! I plan on expanding the composting system to the other kitchen classes at school by next semester (look out for that). Can't wait to share more with you guys in the next post!

21 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page