Dragon’s Breath Stew

What to do with all that napalm sauce I made?

Yet another spicy tofu dish, of course.

Slice a carton of extra firm tofu into 1/2 inch thick sheets and press between two plastic cutting boards with heavy weight for at least an hour.

Put your noodle cooking pot on to boil as you ordinarily would.

In your blender combine two ladles of your napalm with a generous spoonful of dashi miso paste, a handful of garlic cloves, a tablespoon of Chinese five spice, a quarter cup of sugar and two tablespoons of corn starch with two cups of vegetable broth. Obliterate into a smooth liquid.

Remove press and slice tofu into 1/2 inch cubes.

Fire up your wok on your hottest flame. Coat with safflower oil and toasted sesame oil. Brown the tofu cubes.

Open a carton of silken tofu and dump into the wok. Toss vigorously to break up into curdles. As all the water cooks out and pools, transfer to a sieve and back to the heat, repeating until no more water pools out.

Pour the spicy liquid over the tofu and stir occasionally to prevent burning on the bottom and to encourage thickening and evaporation.

Cook a generous portion of rice noodles in your boiling water and drain, do not rinse but immediately portion out — leaving starches on the outside of the noodles helps the sauce to stick, rinsing them makes it slide off into the bottom of your bowl.

When the sauce is quite thick, kill the heat and serve.

Do not breathe near anything flammable for some time.

Exquisite Power Drink of Chilling (aka Iced Cafe Americano)

Trying to keep up here a little so, like adventuring, a little something is better than nothing at all.  A peek around a corner, an undiscovered treasure, or simply that room you’ve walked by dozens of times and never bothered to peek in.  And the latter is what this is for me.  I have an espresso machine.  I have ice.  I know what cafe Americano is (espresso + hot water so it is the same volume as a “cuppa”).  But I have never, until recently, made this … exquisite power drink of chilling.

What I didn’t know is that this can be done wrong.  You can either have something very tasty and chilled, or something bitter, vile, cold, and perhaps mistaken for that jar of dragon urine you keep around for disintegrating trespassers.

After no experimentation, and some reading, here is what happily hit on the first time.  Fill the intended glass with ice (typically a pint glass) and then empty that ice into a Pyrex measuring cup.  Brew the espresso, typically a double (i.e., doppio).  Place a metal spoon into the measuring cup and slowly pour the espresso over the ice.  The hot espresso will melt some of the ice yielding cafe americano.  The remainder of the ice compliments what is now an iced cafe americano.

Drink.  Enjoy.  Feel teh powah.  Roll save vs. caffeine rush.  Failure results in 1d10 turns spent talking like Cornholio.

When Life Gives You Bad Pickles & Hot Peppers… Make Napalm

So, during the last of the Spring harvest from my garden, I had a bumper of hot peppers and sweet peppers. Out of ideas, I decided to make some spicy pickles. I bought some “baby” carrots (you know those are just cut and peeled, right) and some red vinegar, and set up a sealed jar and put it in the back of the fridge.

Well, they came out way too tart. Way too tart. After ignoring the problem for awhile, I came up with a solution. Hot sauce!

By and large, with the exception of “rooster sauce”, I don’t use bottled hot sauces. By and large, too much vinegar and heat and not enough flavor. But I do like Melinda’s brand carrot puree & habanero style bottled hot sauce for some occasions. So, I drained the jar (retaining the vinegar for future pickle experiments) and put the carrots, sweet and hot peppers in the blender with a bit of the vinegar to wet it up, and some of the dehydrated hot peppers I made back in the Spring. I now have a large quantity of very hot, very tart sauce suitable for, well I don’t know yet.

Leveling a village comes to mind.