Warming up with Mirakutei Sushi and Ramen

Here’s my personal prescription for when you are feeling cold and stuffed up for cheering yourself up.

Step 1. Go to Mirakutei at 536 E Burnside Street. It’s a small little cute place that only seats maybe 40, so best if you are in a party of 4 or less. If you are truly not feeling well, it would be best to go alone and not get anyone else sick and also don’t have to try to make conversation while eating, you can just focus on slurping as messily as you want. Or you can make the funny faces necessary. Funny Faces? Slurping? You’ll see soon.
Mirakutei Portland at 536 E Burnside

Step 2. Order some sushi and sashimi.
Sushi at Mirakutei, the Buri Belly, Salmon Belly Aburi, Tuna, and Yellowtail

If you are stuffed up, be a little generous with the wasabi that you dip the end of your chopstick into and mix into your soy sauce to clear your sinuses. Pour very little soy sauce because you want to make sure you taste the fish, not the soy sauce. In fact, it’s best if the reason you are having soy sauce and wasabi is to after you eat a sushi, then a little taste of wasabi + soy sauce, and then a piece of ginger. And then a sip of water. Then the next piece.

I went for Buri Belly, Fresh Salmon, Salmon Belly Aburi, Tuna, Unagi, Uni, and Yellowtail. ALL my favorites.
Sushi at Mirakutei, I ordered the Buri Belly, Fresh Salmon, Salmon Belly Aburi, Tuna, Unagi, Uni, and Yellowtail Sushi at Mirakutei, I ordered the Buri Belly, Fresh Salmon, Salmon Belly Aburi, Tuna, Unagi, Uni, and Yellowtail Sushi at Mirakutei, I ordered the Buri Belly, Fresh Salmon, Salmon Belly Aburi, Tuna, Unagi, Uni, and Yellowtail Sushi at Mirakutei, I ordered the Buri Belly, Fresh Salmon, Salmon Belly Aburi, Tuna, Unagi, Uni, and Yellowtail Sushi at Mirakutei, I ordered the Buri Belly, Fresh Salmon, Salmon Belly Aburi, Tuna, Unagi, Uni, and Yellowtail Sushi at Mirakutei, I ordered the Buri Belly, Fresh Salmon, Salmon Belly Aburi, Tuna, Unagi, Uni, and Yellowtail Sushi at Mirakutei, I ordered the Buri Belly, Fresh Salmon, Salmon Belly Aburi, Tuna, Unagi, Uni, and Yellowtail Sushi at Mirakutei, I ordered the Buri Belly, Fresh Salmon, Salmon Belly Aburi, Tuna, Unagi, Uni, and Yellowtail

Step 3. Make sure that you instruct the servers to not bring you your ramen until you signal completion of your sushi and/or sashimi course. Perhaps if you came with friends, you might want to also get some yakitori, or gyoza too. But now it’s time for Genki Ramen or Tonkatsu Ramen.
Genki Ramen at Mirakutei, which is white miso based and has shredded ground char siu and scrambled egg

Pictured below is the Genki one that sacrifices having the chashu pork for a mass of shredded chair siu pork and scrambled egg that you can break up and get little floating pieces of deliciousness as a reward for spoonfuls of the ramen broth, rather than one big piece of meat. They are both valid, good choices- it’s sort of the equivalent in my head of asking for pasta with marinara and big meatballs or pasta with a meaty ragu that is full of little chunks of meat all over.
Genki Ramen at Mirakutei, which is white miso based and has shredded ground char siu and scrambled egg Genki Ramen at Mirakutei, which is white miso based and has shredded ground char siu and scrambled egg

Don’t be shy about if you can’t finish all the broth, asking to take it home to drink later :)

What s your favorite comfort foods when it is super cold or you are feeling unwell?

Mirakutei on Urbanspoon

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Vegetarian Holiday Recipe Round-up

I thought I would highlight some of the my favorite recipes that I think can be used for entertaining during these last few weeks of the holiday season. Since it is the holiday season, I like going a little bit more decadent.

So for appetizers, maybe do a Honey Walnut Baked Brie. Or, maybe a Brie and Blue Cheese Fondue

Honey Walnut Brie Recipe Brie and Blue Cheese Fondue Recipe

For a soup, I might suggest this rich Butternut Squash and Ale Soup with Candied Almonds and homemade Mascarpone with Cambozola, or go with a Roasted Cauliflower and Leek Soup. I like both these soups because of both the flavor and the texture.

Butternut Squash and Ale Soup with Candied Almonds and homemade Mascarpone with Cambozola Roasted Cauliflower and Leek Soup- Low Carb, Healthy, Vegetarian Soup:  Easy Recipe

For a main, instead of a traditional lasagna, how about a Roasted Vegetable Lasagna Rollup instead? I like the idea of individual rolled pieces that this Roasted Vegetable Lasagna Rollups Recipe calls for. it’s a great to portion out servings for a group. Or change out your lasagna to something more unusual like this Butternut Squash Lasagna in Béchamel sauce

Roasted Vegetable Lasagna Rollups Recipe Roasted Vegetable Lasagna Rollups Recipe Giada's vegetarian Thanksgiving side recipe for Butternut Squash Lasagna in Béchamel sauce

F’s favorites from our past include a Vegetarian Shepherd’s Pie inspired by Moosewood, while mine was the Chik’n Fricasee (which is helped greatly by rich flavors from wine)
Vegetarian Shepherd's Pie Chicken fricassee, with vegetarian chik'n by Quorn

For puff pastry options, besides this previously covered Tofu and Mushrooms A La King, this holiday I am hoping to adapt a Mushroom & squash vegetarian Wellington Vegetarian Wellington that I have bookmarked here from Jamie Oliver
Tofu and Mushrooms A La King

For a side dish to dig into, how about a Baby Bell Peppers and Swiss Strata that was hearty enough to go with leftover Easter ham when I made it, so surely could complement your holiday ham. Also on my casserole wishlist is the I Love Veggies Bake from The Blender Girl.
Baby Bell Peppers and Swiss Strata recipe

And potatoes in form of a Chive and Onion Cheesy Hash Brown Potatoes or Crispy Smashed Potatoes (you can season them the way that suits your taste: I once enjoyed a combination of cumin with  the potatoes based on the Flavor Thesaurus as I wrote about here)

Recipe for Chive and Onion Cheesy Hash Brown Potatoes, vegetarian and a cozy casserole for a winter day or a holiday potluck  Crispy Smashed Potatoes

And I also like Cauliflower with Brown Butter, Pears, Hazelnuts uses cauliflower in a new way besides covered with cheese and cream or roasted.
Vegetarian Recipe: Cauliflower with Brown Butter, Pears, Hazelnuts

Do you have any vegetarian dishes you are making for the holidays?

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Tastebud Farm Pizza at the Portland Farmers Market at PSU

First, do you know that the Portland Farmers Market at PSU is open all year round? That means for instance, it is open TODAY. 9 AM – 2 PM! They will be closed on December 27, but otherwise go today! Go next Saturday!

Every Saturday morning at the Portland Farmers Market at PSU, the Tastebud Farm’s Wood Fired Baked Goods has a stand in the northeast corner of the market. I always swing by when I visit just to see what kind of bagel sandwich toppings they may have based on what is in season and fresh, and the same thing for their pizzas.

I’ve shared photos previously of some of the bagel sandwiches I have enjoyed. Although these bagels are small, they are Montreal style bagels and so have a tasty flavor that is fine just with plain cream cheese as well – and which you can get anytime at some select stores and at a few other Portland Farmers Market during other times of the year (those markets are currently closed since it’s December).
Tastebud Farm at the Portland Farmers Market PSU - Montreal Style Bagels

Today I wanted to share an example of some of the options with their pizza. They lug their wood-fired oven to the market every week, and when you order it they can heat up that pizza right then and there for you!
Pizzas from Tastebud Farm at the Portland Farmers Market PSU Tastebud Farm Pizza example of the bounty at the Portland Farmers Market PSU

Like this amazing breakfast pizza I had a couple weeks ago… their offerings vary every week.
Breakfast Pizza slice from Tastebud Farm at the Portland Farmers Market PSU "Breakfast

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Whole Foods Holiday Top 10 Wines + Oysters and Vichyssoise

Is it really already only two weeks until Christmas?! Time is a flying!

Just like last year (and which I also highlighted in a post last year, along with providing a free printable wine tasting placemat for you to create for a wine tasting party), Whole Foods has picked out some wines that you can find in their stores to highlight for the holidays.
Whole Foods Holiday Top 10 Wines Whole Foods Holiday Top 10 Wines

Some of the Whole Foods Holiday Top 10 wines are quite a value, meaning you can easily buy quite a few bottles in order to make sure everyone’s thirst is sufficiently quenched during a holiday party. Others are great options as a gift when you are attending someone else’s holiday get together, or to pair with a family dinner night.
Whole Foods Holiday Top 10 Wines - very affordable so you can buy several bottles for your holiday party Whole Foods Holiday Top 10 Wines

Let’s take a look at some example food and wine pairings with the 2014 list of Whole Foods Holiday Top 10 Wines! Which apparently are really 11, with 5 white wines and 6 red wines.

White Wines

Whole Foods Holiday Top 10 Wines - Sea Pines Russian River Valley Chardonnay Whole Foods Holiday Top 10 Wines - Louis Latour Duet Chardonnay-Viognier

  • Gaston Chiquet Champagne – because we should all drink sparkling bubbly wine the whole holiday month
  • Pizzolato Pinot Grigio – mineral tones makes this organically grown wine very refreshing
  • Globerati Sauvignon Blanc – lemon and green apple brightness
  • Louis Latour Duet Chardonnay-Viognier – round soft wine that has somehow a bit of earthiness
  • Sea Pines Russian River Chardonnay – balanced to have a little bit of vanilla but not too much oak

Always fun to start with sparkling for any event, such as this Gaston Chiquet Champagne, a Whole Foods Holiday Top 10 Wines "Sea
So Whole Foods suggested a very easy way to pair any of those 5 white wines at your party or to take to someone else’s party (or to keep for yourselves for a very sexy holiday date night at home)… Oysters! You don’t even need to cook them- AND you don’t have to shuck them!

Did you know that when you buy your oysters from Whole Foods, you can have the Fishmongers there shuck them all for you? After they are shucked, make sure you keep your oysters cold, so go home and refrigerate them right away, and ideally you will eat them that day. Supposedly you can also choose to wait up to 7 days, or freeze them, but it’s best as soon as possible.

At the pairing event I attended at Whole Foods Pearl, they let me try a few different types of oysters with a few different simple preparations. You can see the pairings below – the number of the wine and the oyster is a pairing I tried.
Pairing oysters and white wines from the Whole Foods Holiday Top 10 Wines 2014 list

It was fun to see, feel, and taste the difference in flavor between the various types of oysters you can purchase, as well as the different garnish preparations used to highlight them. They came in a variety of salty/briny level and textures and I could admire the differences in shells and textures. At this event I was able to try five oyster types of a Sun Hollow oyster (paired with Globerati Sauvignon Blanc), Malaspina oysters (paired with a Pizzolato Pinot Grigio), Fanny Bay oyster (paired with Louis Latour Duet Chardonnay-Viognier), Miyagi Oysters (paired with Sea Pines Russian River Chardonnay), and Penn Cove Select oysters (paired with Gaston Chiquet Champagne).
Globerati Sauvignon Blanc with a Sun Hollow oyster Pizzolato Pinot Grigio paired with Malaspina oysters Fanny Bay oyster (paired with Louis Latour Duet Chardonnay-Viognier) Miyagi Oysters (paired with Sea Pines Russian River Chardonnay) Penn Cove Select oysters (paired with Gaston Chiquet Champagne)

Here are my favorite ways to do a little preparation for the oyster when you serve them (the photos are from the event and not the actual recipe shared):

  • Hot Sauce. The simplest no muss way. With a little bit of Marshall’s Haute Sauce like the Red Chili Lime, Serrano Ginger Lemongrass, or some of their limited edition sauces like their Gin Roasted Pepper. For your get together, maybe get a few different sauces and let your guests add the dash of whichever sauce they want to try themselves!
    Penn Cove Select oysters (paired with Gaston Chiquet Champagne) 
  • Mignonette Sauce, which is essentially a vinegary sauce. Since you are already pairing this with wine, make it even a smoother pairing by using some of that wine in the mignonette itself by preparing 1/2 cup of a dry white wine with a tablespoon of sherry vinegar in a saucepan and reducing it to half. Now take off the heat and add 1 finely chopped shallot and freshly cracked black pepper, to taste, and maybe a tiny pinch of an herb
  • Fresh Lemon and Horseradish sauce. I like the way these flavor and zing in a way that lets the natural flavors of Oyster shine by letting Oyster flavor be in the forefront. Get a fresh horseradish root, clean and then peel the outside, grate the root until you get 3 ounces (Be prepared to cry a little from the fumes just like an onion. Console yourself with wine.) to every teaspoon of fresh squeezed lemon juice and a little bit of water until it suits your taste. Instead of water, you can also use cocktail sauce for a horseradish lemon cocktail sauce topping.
    Fanny Bay oyster (paired with Louis Latour Duet Chardonnay-Viognier)
  • This is the one that is inspired from what I had at this Whole Foods event: a Jalapeno Ponzu sauce with a little 1/2 Teaspoon of caviar! For the sauce, this recipe is enough for two dozen oysters so you can use all the jalapeno. Mix together 1 Tablespoon soy sauce, 1 Tablespoon water, 2 Tablespoons yuzu, or you can use fresh squeezed lemon juice instead of yuzu, 1 Teaspoon sugar, 1 small jalapeño, minced and 2 Tablespoons minced shallot. Then if you can, add the caviar using a mother of pearl spoon/wooden spoon (don’t use metal as it oxidizes the caviar). How fancy is that!
    Miyagi Oysters (paired with Sea Pines Russian River Chardonnay)

The Duet Chardonnay-Viognier and Vichyssoise

I also happened to purchase the Louis Latour Duet Chardonnay-Viognier and took it to a dinner party with a French theme. I paired this round, soft and earthy wine with a cold soup I made for the dinner called Vichyssoise. If you haven’t had Vichyssoise before, it’s a potato leek soup that is creamy yet light. This is a great option to bring to a party because you can prepare the recipe the night before- in fact you’ll want to because if you let the flavors sit together overnight it will taste better!

The vichyssoise also can be served warm or chilled, again making it ideal for transporting to share with others. By the way, it’s pronounced Vi-chy-swahze, where Vi-chy is sort of like fishy but use the V sound and sounds heck o impressive.

Recipe for Vegetarian Vichyssoise, a potato leek soup that is creamy yet light. This is a great option to bring to a party because you can prepare the recipe the night before- in fact you'll want to because if you let the flavors sit together overnight it will taste better!

This recipe makes 8 servings, and it tasted great with the Duet wine because the earthyness of the wine went well with the potato leek and watercress flavors of the soup. This version of vichyssoise is lightened up considerably by using vegetable broth instead of chicken stock and also by using half and half instead of cream. It also has a bit more earthiness and bite by using watercress.

Ingredients:

  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided (2 tablespoons will be used to cook the leek, 1 tablespoon to top the soup during serving)
  • 4 leeks, well washed and coarsely chopped
  • 2 pounds potatoes, coarsely chopped (I used Yukon Gold and did not peel them)
  • 2 bunches watercress, divided (half will be used in the soup, the other half later when you serve)
  • 2 1/4 quarts (9 cups) of vegetable broth
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • ground white pepper to taste
  • 1 cup half and half or cream – I went with using half and half
  • 1 1/2 tablespoon fresh lemon juice, 1/2 in preparing the soup and the rest you may add to taste later when serving.
  • Grated zest of 1 lemon
  • 2 tablespoons finely snipped fresh chives

Directions:

  1. Place a large soup pot over medium heat and add the 2 tablespoons of the oil. Add the chopped leeks and cook, stirring frequently, until tender, about 5 minutes.
    Recipe for Vichyssoise- the softened leeks Recipe for Vichyssoise- the softened leeks Recipe for Vichyssoise- the softened leeks
  2. Now add your chopped potatoes and cook, stirring occasionally, until slightly softened, about 5 minutes more. You don’t need everything to fully cook and nothing should be browned as you it will cook in the broth shortly. Add 1 bunch of the watercress and stir until the watercress is wilted, probably another 5 minutes.
    Vichyssoise- leeks plus potatoes
  3. Add the vegetable broth, salt, and pepper to taste. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to low and simmer gently, partially covered, until the vegetables are very tender, about 25 minutes.
  4. Remove the soup from the heat and let cool for 5 to 10 minutes so that you can put it in the food processor. I put my pot in the kitchen sink partially immersed in cold water and some ice cubes to cool it down. In batches, process the soup in a food processor until smooth. After each batch, pour the processed soup into another larger pot. As you probably know, when processing the soup in your food processor or blender, make sure you are careful to press the lid on as you are blending and never fill your machine too high, getting a burn from processing hot liquids is an accident you don’t want to experience!
  5. In the large pot with your processed soup, stir in the half-and-half and 1/2 tablespoon of the lemon juice. Cool to room temperature, then cover and refrigerate for at least 5 hours, best would be to let chill overnight).
  6. Before serving, taste the soup for seasoning and adjust with salt, pepper, and lemon juice as necessary. After placing it in your soup vessels (such as chilled soup bowls), add a little swirl of remaining 1 1/2 tablespoon of lemon juice remaining tablespoon of olive oil amongst all the bowls. Finally, add to each bowl a small bunch of the watercress, a pinch of the finely snipped fresh chives, and and grate a little pinch of the lemon zest on top.

Vichyssoise- a vegetarian recipe for this potato leek soup that is creamy yet light. This is a great option to bring to a party because you can prepare the recipe the night before- in fact you'll want to because if you let the flavors sit together overnight it will taste better!

Red Wines

I didn’t have a chance to try any of the red wines, but wanted to still share them in case you prefer reds to whites, along with the descriptions from Whole Foods. Although I didn’t get to taste them, I trust their choices based on tasting their holiday wine selections last year.
Red Wine

  • Coppola Sonoma County Pinot Noir – Fruit forward ruby red with a tartness of dried cherry and strawberry and subtle floral jasmine notes
  • Bodegas Belgrano Malbec – Aromas of warm spices and stewed blueberry flavors that mingle with woodsy hints of smoke
  • Leyenda del Castillo Rioja – Mineral, earthy aromas are found in this deep garnet Spanish red
  • Bubo Cabernet Sauvignon – Surprisingly fruity, pleasant and approachable with a touch of green pepper aroma
  • H&G Priorat – Earthy, herbaceous aromas in this brick red wine lead to a refined minerality and complex dark fruit flavors
  • Charles and Charles Merlot – Attractive baked biscuit aroma in this inky, hearty red

Whole Foods Holiday Top 10 Wines - Coppola Sonoma County Pinot Noir Whole Foods Holiday Top 10 Wines - H&G Priorat
You might also consider adding a dessert wine to your holidays, such as a port. And think about pairing it with a little buffet of tiny dessert snacks (all that you conveniently purchase at Whole Foods) such as the Belgian Chocolates, Milk Chocolate Peppermint Pretzel Bar, or Chocolate Candy Cane Sandwich Creme Cookies!
Dessert pairing with port thanks to Whole Foods

For another easy way to get food to pair with your wine, whether it be red or white wines… I also heh heh like to browse the prepared foods section of Whole Foods and grab things from there, and if I have any doubt I will ask someone at Whole Foods to help me pick a dish to go with the wine. Then I go home and put them on a nice platter and take them to the party. What! I especially can’t resist when I see signs like this to advertise their holiday side dishes!
Whole Foods New Traditions with their prepared Holiday Side Dishes

Are you doing any holiday dinner or party at home with wines, and if so are you pairing anything and what are you pairing? Have you ever served raw oysters before? Or had Vichyssoise?

Disclosure: I was invited to attend a complimentary event at Whole Foods Pearl that included tasting 5 of the Holiday Wines paired with oysters, but I will always provide my honest opinion and assessment of all products and experiences I may be given. The views and opinions expressed in this blog are entirely my own

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Nodoguro Upcoming Offerings, Recap of November MacDonald’s Menu

This month of December and expanding into January, Nodoguro is offering two different kind of dinner experiences you can choose from. I have written about Nodoguro many times previously, and will recap the November “MacDonald’s” fast food playful theme shortly, but wanted to get this important news out first so you can act upon it.

The first of the two dinner options you can currently choose from is, just as in the dinner I am about to recap, to let chef Ryan Roadhouse take you on a themed journey that includes nine courses, with optional beverages you can order separately or as a pairing when you get there for $85 (gratuity not included). Previous themes included Totoro, Haruki Murakami, a July Tanabata Matsuri Japanese Festival theme, and Firefly, for instance as well.

For December, the theme is GLITTER. Check the website for the dates that are available. There is a recap already from another blogger, Misadventures of Miso, of the Glitter Dinner as well!
Nodoguro's McDonalds theme for November 2014, a play on fast food. Chef Ryan Roadhouse plates the dishes right at the counter in front of diners

In addition, Ryan is also offering this month a couple times and multiple times in January a Hardcore Sushi Omakase experience for $120 (again with optional beverages you can order separately, gratuity not included). If you first got to experience Ryan or wish you had experienced Ryan when he was working at Masu, now’s your chance to try a more traditional Japanese sushi dinner. Some of the fish is being brought directly from the famed Tsukiji Market in Japan, which Ryan and Elena painstakingly pick up from the airport after midnight for you and the fish is extremely high quality, beautiful, and delicious.

AND/OR, you can also buy gift certificates to give to friends and family who you think would enjoy the Nodoguro experience, with or without you! You can purchase the gift certificate on their website on their Reservation page. I also hear he is open to hearing other proposals such as catering or classes, so be sure to inquire if you have ideas and requests. If you could see the small kitchen he currently works at then you would know that he can put together amazing things no matter what is or is not in your kitchen or desired dining space.

You should definitely try to snap up your reservation tickets online ASAP as they are selling out quickly. And, I think both of these fixed dinner prices is a steal considering that Nodoguro and Ryan have recently been the subject of lots of award and praise,. It began just earlier this year with Michael Russell at the Oregonian article “Nodoguro pop-up bringing creative Japanese cuisine to Northeast Portland who helps highlight why you should be thinking pretty hard about trying Ryan’s Hardcore Sushi Omakase.

Then recently Ryan was highlighted as a Rising Star Chef 2014 and Nodoguro listed one of Portland’s Best Restaurants by Portland Monthly, which makes a case for the themed menus that I have been dining at and the upcoming Glitter menu.  Ryan and Nodoguro also made the Eater PDX Top 3 List for 2014 Chef of the Year and 2014 Restaurant of the Year. Ryan will also be participating in the exciting Chefs’ Week PDX alongside many of the best and brightest culinary talents in Portland.
Ryan Roadhouse, Rising Star Chef 2014 of Portland Monthly

After purchasing your reservation online from the Nodoguro website, usually a couple days before your dinner Ryan will email you what the specifics of the menu for your dinner evening will be. During the reservation process you can let them know any constraints you might have (I often dine with a friend who can’t eat salmon and she is always accommodated for, and another time there was someone who could not eat pork).

Dinner from start to finish is about 2 hours or so. The email will let you know when they will start seating, and when you enter they have only a small amount of space so knowing what size parties they need to balance, Elena or someone from the Nodoguro team will let you know where you will be seated. This is when you will also have the chance to peruse the beverage menu and choose to order drinks a la carte or do a pairing.
Mark Wooten and Ryan Roadhouse of Nodoguro PDX - check out the Nodoguro Upcoming offerings to see when you can see them!

I am recapping a meal that was last months’ theme which means you can’t get it anymore. However, I like to think it helps you readers who might be researching what the experience might be like by seeing these recaps each month.

As usual, the meals do vary even within the same month or even same week based on what is fresh – I think this time I was unlucky because a very cold weather front came in during November that froze a lot of vegetables, so diners earlier in the month I think got a little bit more.

Large Cola

I know it was described how they created this homemade soda, but I brought a guest this time to dinner who was new to Nodoguro so chatted a lot more than my normal attentive dining so confess I totally missed it, sorry :(
Nodoguro's McDonalds theme for November 2014, a play on fast food - Large Cola

Crab, Bread and Butter (Crab, ikura, and dill)

I don’t know what to say except yum…
Nodoguro's McDonalds theme for November 2014, a play on fast food: Crab, Bread and Butter (Crab, ikura, and dill) Nodoguro's McDonalds theme for November 2014, a play on fast food: Crab, Bread and Butter (Crab, ikura, and dill)

Wartime Sashimi (soy cured ocean trout and wasabi)

During wartime new fishes entered the Japanese diet as their regular fish were not always available, as represented here by this trout
Nodoguro's McDonalds theme for November 2014, a play on fast food: Wartime Sashimi (soy cured ocean trout and wasabi)

Tofu nuggets with special sauce (tofu, uni, and aged soy)

I love uni, and keep enjoying the magic Ryan has been pulling off with taking tofu and breaking expectations of what tofu tastes and feels like.
Nodoguro's McDonalds theme for November 2014, a play on fast food: Tofu nuggets with special sauce (tofu, uni, and aged soy)

Filet o fish (yuan yaki Ling Cod and tartar sauce)

I can never say no to anything Ryan seems to pull out of that oven every dinner, and this cod is no exception. I was wondering what I would think of this homemade tartar sauce and whether it would get in the way of the beautiful flavors of the fish, but I found it to be a nice contrast and didn’t leave any sauce left on my plate.
Nodoguro's McDonalds theme for November 2014, a play on fast food: Filet o fish (yuan yaki Ling Cod and tartar sauce) Nodoguro's McDonalds theme for November 2014, a play on fast food: Filet o fish (yuan yaki Ling Cod and tartar sauce) Nodoguro's McDonalds theme for November 2014, a play on fast food: Filet o fish (yuan yaki Ling Cod and tartar sauce)

Chocolate Sukiyaki (wagyu sukiyaki, potatoes, miso, chocolate)

The addition of chocolate is so genius here. I haven’t seen this in the US, but in Asia sukiyaki is a type of fast food restaurant in which you don’t grab and go, but you sit at tables that have big pots of boiling broth. You are given pretty much raw ingredients (your choice of fish, pork, chicken, beef, potatoes etc) to cook in and because the broth is already so hot everything cooks extremely fast. It’s a family style meal where everyone gathers all at once simultaneously cooking and eating together but without having to prep anything beforehand and clean anything else up at the end.
Nodoguro's McDonalds theme for November 2014, a play on fast food: Chocolate Sukiyaki (wagyu sukiyaki, potatoes, miso, chocolate) Nodoguro's McDonalds theme for November 2014, a play on fast food: Chocolate Sukiyaki (wagyu sukiyaki, potatoes, miso, chocolate)

Coco Ichiban salad (Persimmon and root vegetables with curry vinegar)

Coco Ichiban is a curry chain restaurant, so you might have expected a curry dish but Ryan took it up a level by cooking curry down to use as the dressing!
Nodoguro's McDonalds theme for November 2014, a play on fast food: Coco Ichiban salad (Persimmon and root vegetables with curry vinegar) Nodoguro's McDonalds theme for November 2014, a play on fast food: Coco Ichiban salad (Persimmon and root vegetables with curry vinegar)

Yoshinoya bowl (seared Bonito, onion, Mizuna, and spicy soy)

Yoshinoya is a rice bowl chain restaurant famous for their beef on top of rice, though you can also get other proteins to top your rice bowl.
Nodoguro's McDonalds theme for November 2014, a play on fast food: Yoshinoya bowl (seared Bonito, onion, Mizuna, and spicy soy) "Nodoguro's

Omelet with Rice! (dashimaki tamago)

Nodoguro's McDonalds theme for November 2014, a play on fast food: Omelet with Rice! (dashimaki tamago) Nodoguro's McDonalds theme for November 2014, a play on fast food: Omelet with Rice! (dashimaki tamago)

Kit Kat

I couldn’t think of a better choice unless it was pocky because seriously Kit Kats are so well loved there. If you ever see Green Tea Kit Kat, buy it. You will get obsessed over it like so many others who have fallen for its flavors… but this upgraded fancy Kit Kat from Nodoguro with whipped coconut milk in the back is excellent too.
Nodoguro's McDonalds theme for November 2014, a play on fast food: Kit Kat Nodoguro's McDonalds theme for November 2014, a play on fast food: Kit Kat

Hamburger snack (manju) and Drive thru Coffee

OMG the most adorable little manju I’ve ever seen, and that was a high bar given the previously I’ve admired the rabbit in the moon one at a previous Nodoguro dinner.
Nodoguro's McDonalds theme for November 2014, a play on fast food: Hamburger snack (manju) with Drive Thru Coffee Nodoguro's McDonalds theme for November 2014, a play on fast food: Hamburger snack (manju) with Drive Thru Coffee Nodoguro's McDonalds theme for November 2014, a play on fast food: Hamburger snack (manju) with Drive Thru Coffee

I have to give a big hand again to Elena who always puts together the atmosphere for the new theme each month- it’s the second thing I look forward to, after the food of course. I want to see what food magic Ryan and partner in crime Mark Wooten of supplier Phantom Rabbit Farms has put together, and I want to see what decor Elena and her father/children have created. I was all excited like I haven’t been over Happy Meals for a long time when I saw the treats inside… which ha ha I’m not sharing the pics with you but they are super cute toys. I somehow missed the Menu Board that Misadventures with Miso did capture, so be sure to check out the recap at that blog as well, MwM seems incredibly knowledgeable about Japanese cuisine and understands the inspirations Nodoguro is rifting off of much better than I did.
Nodoguro's McDonalds theme for November 2014, a play on fast food Nodoguro's McDonalds theme for November 2014, a play on fast food Nodoguro's McDonalds theme for November 2014, a play on fast food

Follow on Twitter Nodoguro or Ryan Roadhouse to keep up for when new tickets or events for more Nodoguro Upcoming Offerings announcements as they come.

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What do you think of the Nodoguro take on Japanese fast food? I’m sort of inspired by the idea, though I couldn’t do it with Japanese fast food, but a dinner using American fast food inspirations could be a fun challenge!

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