My current favorite fall dinner
Finally, cold weather! Mind you, it's not that I am overly anxious for winter, but I am ready for the mosquitoes to disappear and short-sleeves in November does seem wrong. But, here we are, into the second week of November and the weather seems to be righting itself. Now to remember which tub holds all of our sweaters.
We've been eating well in this spring-ish winter weather (when we've had time to cook, that is; last week was the busiest baking week ever and, though I fed Ai reasonably well, I had quite a few fried-eggs-and-nothing-else dinners). My current favorite (for ease of preparation) dinner goes like this:
gather up whatever vegetables you have (greens are imperative, but apart from that anything will work) and cut them into bite sized pieces -1cm thick or so for root veggies (carrots, turnips, daikon radish or what-have-you). Layer the veggies into a wide sauce pan with the slowest cooking vegetables toward the bottom and the quicker cooking ones at the top, followed by thinly sliced meat or atsuage tofu, then a little salt (mine might have daikon radish and carrots on the very bottom, with the base of bok choi or napa cabbage leaves next, followed by negi/leeks, then the softer tops of the leaves, maybe some konnyaku, then cut-up mushrooms and finally thinly sliced meat or atsuage/fried tofu).
You then put a little splash of water in the pan (or maybe it would be wiser to have done this at the beginning) and cover the pan. You then just steam it all 'til it is good and done, and serve it with such sauces as you enjoy. We generally go with soy sauce and ponzu citrus sauce, because that is what is in the fridge. I'm sure there are fancier sauces out there.
An extra bonus - you can chop everything up and toss it in the pan, then cover and refrigerate, and cook much later. I discovered this last week when I prepped everything, but decided not to cook it until we were done with getting ready for the next days marketing. That didn't end up being until past 10 pm, at which point Shuzo had already given up and gone to bed, needing to begin baking at 3:30 the next morning, so I too gave it up, had rice pudding for dinner and stuck the veggies in the fridge. The next night they made a great meal and the first proper dinner (for the grown-ups) in days.