Posts Tagged ‘fish’

The Covid Cooking Club: Chapter 2: Meat

Wednesday, March 17th, 2021

The Covid Cooking Club

How To Cook Steak In The Oven - Best Perfect Oven-Steak Recipe
A generic picture of steak. Mine actually looks kind of like this, but less tasty.

Chapter 2: Meat

Meat. The manliest of all foods, according to people who don’t understand how chemicals work and think eating soy will invert their gender. I don’t think eating meat will make me any less of a wimp, but it’s filling and tastes good. The meat I eat the most is canned tuna fish, because it’s cheap and requires zero preparation aside from opening the can and chowing down—though sometimes I drink the fish oil first like some sort of absolute barbarian. The problem with tuna is that it makes your whole room smell like fish. I don’t find it that irritating, considering the other things my room could smell like. Sometimes I mash it up with a fork and mix it with mayonnaise to make tuna salad, but my most successful attempt has been boiling it in oil with garlic and parsley to create a less messy pasta sauce (which wasn’t in last week’s article because I did it this Wednesday).

I call it Pasta Ala Xander, because I like making puns more than I like names that don’t suck.

I’ve cooked whole fish as well, covering it in flour and frying it in oil on a pan. The result is a relatively bland white mean that falls apart faster than a South American republic that refuses to export bananas to the US in the early 20th century when touched with a fork. I could probably get more flavor out of white meat by cooking chicken, but I’m also scared shitless by anything involving raw chicken. I’m a bit of a hypochondriac when it comes to food—though not enough to wash my hands for the full recommended duration each time when cooking—so whenever I try to cook chicken it ends up getting totally burned because otherwise I won’t touch it for fear of contracting salmonella. In theory, I have more success with red meat. I can cook sausages okay, since I just need to cover them in oil and pan fry them. The real issue here is steak. I love steak, and I’m not terrible at making it. The trick is to add a completely excessive amount of salt and pepper on both sides to build up a big crust, then fry each side in oil until it looks like it’s burned. It ends up being too crispy on the outside and too soft on the inside, but it’s still tasty. At least it would be if I didn’t keep comparing it to my dad’s steaks. Honestly, I’m probably the worst cook in my immediate family. My sister is a naturally gifted cook, and my mom and dad have essentially been trying to one-up each other in cooking skills since their divorce. I’ve only just started trying to make food since last March when going outside became the equivalent of taping an “eviscerate my lungs” sign to your back. So even when I enjoy the steak, it just reminds me of how crappy of a cook I am compared to the rest of my family. That still doesn’t stop me from making it, it just means that once every few weeks I subject myself to feelings of deep inadequacy in exchange for a burst of cholesterol. There have been worse tradeoffs in history.

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By: Alexander Rose

Alexander Rose studies satire at NYU Gallatin and wishes he was actually just Oscar Wilde. He is interested in writing, roleplaying games, and procrastination. Describing himself in the third person like this makes him feel weird.

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Monster Sushi: A Japanese Experience

Tuesday, September 25th, 2012

With the new semester unfolding and taking a large part of my daily routines, I haven’t had many opportunities to go restaurant hunting for reviews. Thanks to Rosh Hashanah last week, I was able to take a break from campus life and head to the city for some alone time – essentially some time for me to wind down with great food. I walked into a Japanese restaurant on 23rd Street called Monster Sushi, a restaurant that many of my friends frequently visit. According to my group of friends, Monster Sushi is one of the best sushi restaurants in the city at an affordable price, and I just had to check the place out for myself.

Monster Sushi has a chic modern interior while maintaining the air of a traditional Japanese restaurant: the furniture has a modern flair, whereas the décor, accessories, and sushi bar exude Japanese culture. I was immediately seated at a table and the waiter kindly explained the menu to me. Like most Japanese restaurants, Monster Sushi has a wide variety of sushi rolls. What I found to be unique about Monster Sushi was their bento box specials. “Bento box” can literally be translated as “lunch box;” the bento boxes consist of a variety of side dishes accompanying a main dish. Monster Sushi has an extensive list of main dishes for their bento boxes aside from simply sticking with the commonly found chicken or salmon teriyaki boxes. I ordered the Chilean sea bass bento box, which came broiled with a special light soy sauce. Each bento box comes with soup, salad, rice, a choice of spring roll or shumai (Japanese steamed dumplings), and a choice of California, tuna, or salmon roll.

Sushi Bar

Miso Soup

I was first served the miso soup as a part of the bento box special. The miso soup was light yet flavorful with the rich taste of the miso—a very traditional starter for a bento meal. Shortly after finishing the miso soup, the waiter served me the Chilean sea bass bento box. I was fairly impressed with the size of the box and how packed it was with food. The overall presentation was great, and after tasting the dish, I was even more impressed with all of the flavor combinations. The Chilean sea bass was crisply seared on the outside, then broiled with a light soy sauce that seeped into the layers of the fish. The sauce consisted of soy sauce, ginger, and vinegar to add on to the light flavor and to maintain the freshness of the fish. Along with the Chilean sea bass, I enjoyed all of the accompaniments to the bento box. The spring rolls that I had ordered instead of the shumai were crispy, packed with vegetable and shrimp filling, and seasoned perfectly so that there was no need for a dipping sauce. The salad was also extremely fresh, topped with a light ginger dressing that was just sweet enough to entice my taste buds. To top this all off, the salmon roll that I chose consisted of fresh salmon pieces wrapped in white rice and seaweed, and these salmon rolls were larger compared to those from other Japanese restaurants I have frequented.

Chilean Sea Bass Bento Box: spring rolls, salmon rolls, white rice, and salad

Apart from the bento box, I had also ordered the Godzilla roll, one of Monster Sushi’s specialty rolls. The Godzilla roll consisted of spicy tuna with avocado and flying fish roe on the outside. I had heard that this roll was one of the most popular rolls at Monster Sushi, and after tasting it, I had a clear understanding as to why this is so. The Godzilla roll had the right amount of spiciness in the spicy tuna which blended well with the freshness of the tuna itself. Everything about this roll was perfection: the ratio of rice to fish as well as a flavor balance of richness and light freshness.

The Godzilla Roll

Monster Sushi far exceeded my expectations of the typical Japanese restaurant. I absolutely loved the bento box, especially because I was able to have so many different dishes within one order. Although Monster Sushi is slightly more expensive than other Japanese restaurants, it is definitely worth the price considering the sizes of their rolls and the amount of food they give per entrée. My experience at Monster Sushi was wonderfully delicious and I would highly recommend this place to people who are hunting for some great Japanese cuisine without having to travel too far.

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Becky Kim, Queens College, Read my blog and follow me on Twitter
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Monster Sushi on Urbanspoon