Friday, December 30, 2005

Reflection 2005 - Best Memories

Today's post is more about content! Here are my best memories from 2005...

Best food travel destination outside of US: Japan, and more specifically, Hyotei in Kyoto
hyotei takenoko
I had two international travels in 2005 - one to Paris and one to Japan. As much fun as Paris was, it just didn't compare to the luxury and debauchery I was soaked with in Japan. Of course the immense difference in the budget for the two trips plays a large part in why my experiences in Japan totally eclipsed that of Paris!

Best food travel destination inside of the US: Honolulu, HI
From $40 a day meals to deluxe grilled beef at yakiniku houses so authentic you'd think you were in Japan, Honolulu's got some seriously good grub! And I LOOOOOOOOOVED that purin custard in my shaved ice! I'd traveled quite a bit this year (let's see - Southern CA, NYC, MA, NC to name a few destinations...) but the variety and general quality of food I had in Honolulu tops them all!

Best traveling serendipity: an extra night in NYC
My sister's nail polish got quite the attention in this post! What could've been a disasterous evening in stormy LaGuardia turned into a lovely dinner with my sister to cap off a week of traveling and conferencing!

Best local adventure: Fishing in Capitola, CA
I went fishing for the first time! It was so much fun, and the catch, grilled to perfection by my buddy, Ted, was the perfect way to end a very exciting day. I'm not much of a fisherman, but I managed to catch one (unfortunate) fish, and boy, he was a yummy one!

Best food-blogging event submission: Vietnamese Autumn Rolls
autumn roll
I've had a lot of fun participating in the various food-blogging events this year! Unfortunately, my recent crazy work schedules have prevented me from taking part in the most recent events, but I plan to get back into them in the coming year. These ingredient-limited and/or themed cooking events are a really fun way for me to brainstorm and make new dishes. I've had a number of decent final products, but this Vietnamese Autumn roll takes the cake in creativity - esp. since there is no Autumn in Vietnam!

Sweetest: the Taiyaki!
Crunchy taiyaki with moist, soft, piping hot sweet bean innards was the beginning of a series of cooking & eating get-togethers with Umelissa, whom I met on Chowhound.

Most savory: Turkey ramen
This turkey looks like a fish called Mambo in Japanese... I turned this turkey into a really fun ramen experiment, where I made three soup seasonings to go with my turkey broth. The best part? I won $50 from Slashfood!

Most Typical MED-fare: 15-min meals
My Epicurean Debauchery specializes in 15-min meals with creative dishes that are not constrained by culture or tradition. Since authentic recipes are often time consuming, both in training and in the actual time spent making the dishes, I cut corners by supplementing with creativity. Natto spaghetti, yuba curry, hoisin-olive tapenade - the list is endless. And they only take 15 min or so to make!

Well, that might be it for this year, unless I get some huge urge to blog tomorrow. I'm off to Oola with a bunch of my friends for a New Year's Eve dinner. Thanks for finding my little blog and reading, commenting, and emailing me! Have a wonderful Happy New Year~! Mina-san, yoi Otoshi wo~~~~~!


The Papa Bear said...

You're the Queen of 15-minute meals. The natto spaghetti reminds me of that.

Anonymous said...

thank you for your natto spaghetti excitement. i got addicted to natto as of late and want to add it to conventional dishes. this sounds delicious!

Anonymous said...

this is absolutely bizzare of me to type this after having found this randomly on google but...

north vietnam has a full 4 seasons including a cold, moist winter that often dips to 30-40 degrees fahrenheit....

LOL!! Sorry for bothering you, nice blog and beautiful food pictures.