SatGourmet: Teriyaki, Pizza, and a Lost Wine

Having grown up in a majority-Asian neighborhood, there is a certain art to Asian cooking that brings joy to the palate.  In particular, this week’s Thursday afternoon dinner of teriyaki chicken.

Lots of options here, depending on schedules, amount of labor you want to invest, and so on.  For those on a short clock, boneless, skinless chicken, doused in a bottle of Kikkoman Teriyaki sauce is OK.  Provided it gets 4 or 5 hours in the fridge and then is brought slowly to room temp prior to cooking.

As it comes from the bottle it’s “OK” but not close to the tastes of youth.  Depending on which Asian family, there were lots of options to enhance what’s arguably a good baseline sauce.

For example, in families with a Philippines or Pacific Islander background, the addition of something “sour” was favored.  This was usually pineapple.  Since everyone was on a budget in the 1950s and 1960s, the short cans of Dole pineapple rings worked.

A good portion of the juice went into “basic teriyaki” sauce.  Which wasn’t around, so equal portions of soy sauce and the sweet-sugary liquid from the canned fruit was used.

The thrust of this was a moderately short soak of pork; tenderloins were overpriced, but chops (without bone) worked well.  The rings of pineapple were arranged – one per chop  – atop the meat and into the oven it went.  After a four-hour marinade bath, into a baking dish at 350F till tender and done. Rice?  Fried banana (or several), and for the grown ups, some hot sake.  Yum.

Kicking It Up

In traditional Japanese, the saucing is generally “middle of the road” – favoring complexity over extremes of tooth.

One major improvement we like to add to the basic teriyaki (soy sauce, sweetener (honey is fine, but brown sugar is great – and a shot or two of saki) to ramp-up the ginger.

Asian markets usually have fresh ginger you can cut down and mince.  Running across a strong (cooked) piece is a grand reward.  But, since the number of solid Asian markets in East Texas is limited, we keep several bottles of Ginger People Ginger Juice 5fl oz 2pk ($9-bucks at Amazon) on hand.

Add ginger juice to taste.  Which for me is about a tablespoon to 1/2 cup of uncut teriyaki sauce.

Pappy Ure, I think it was, came up with the idea of adding several shakes of garlic powder (*NOT garlic salt!!!) to the mix.  Laziness has set in with the arrival of our 70’s, so reaching for a bottle of HOWARD’S Garlic Seasoning Bottled Juice | Gluten-Free, All Natural, Shelf Stable| 5 Ounce – which is $7-bucks worth.  It’s not quite the same as freshly mashed and pressed garlic (vinegar makes it more stable, though), but close-enough for many things.

Howards also makes an onion juice, but honestly, onion and teriyaki is…how to say this?  Not very refined.

Pappy was always happy with basic teriyaki sauce (soy and sweetener – the pretense of honey being magical in teriyaki is over-rated compared to adding a teaspoon of garlic juice and a tablespoon of ginger juice).  One other fine addition is several flakes of cayenne pepper.

One of these days, I keep threatening to order a bottle of Mad Dog 357 ECO 1 Million Scoville Ultra Pure Pepper Extract and try adding ONE DROP to the teriyaki.  But science like this is best performed on younger people.

Gone Danish

While pork, beef, and chicken all work – and pork especially well with the pineapple – other variants exist.  In Chinese cookery, the orange chicken recipes sometimes have soy sauce and some sweetening.  Experiments with taste including lemon and orange is therefore enjoyable.

One that’s still on my list is to take basic teriyaki and “Go Danish” with it.  Thinking pork here, and adding some cardamom and nutmeg (plus garlic, of course) and trying that option.

Not sure whether it will be suitable for fresh red potatoes swimming in cardiologist juice (butter) with some fresh-ground pepper and parsley, but rice seems pretty safe.

Quest for Perfect Pizza

Having gotten the wood-fired pizza oven together just in time for the Blizzard of ’21 in East Texas, we got very close to the “perfect pie” on the BBQ.

Turns out, our 16-1/2″ pizza and baking stone fits perfectly on the BBQ.  So after a 25-minute warm-up (to ensure the stone was hot, which cooks the bottom) on went a properly revised Di Giorno thin crust Suprema that had been warmed to room temp.  Sliced ‘shrooms and more cheese.

Didn’t take long, even in 30-degree weather on the BBQ deck.  Was wasn’t just good, it was damn good.

Got a “Weather and Taste” theory I’ve been  working on for half a century:  Why is it that food is so damn good when eaten outdoors compared with inside?

Noticed it on our sailboat all the time.  A steak was always OK but when cooked on the propane BBQ hung on the stern rail of the boat, it was somehow much better.  And the closest to perfection was while tied to a mooring buoy off the backside of Blake Island west of Seattle.  With Mt. Rainer in the background, a bit of smoke coming from the BBQ, and a (very) large glass of white wine.  OMG!

Speaking of White Wine…

What the hell ever happened to Cribari vino Bianco?

I was first introduced to it at the reopening of Howard Hughes’ Desert Inn remodel gala in Las Vegas in (was it ’78?).  The head chef gave a bunch of old school reporters (this was back in press junket days) a cooking lesson (amazing, to say the least!).  He served vino Bianco right from the jug.

I must have consumed dozens of those gallon jugs over a lifetime…but somewhere along culinary memory lane, they disappeared.  I’ve been looking for them now for a year with no results.

I have come close.  It turns out that while Cribari Cellars doesn’t seem to make it, over on the site, there’s an imported version of vino Bianco.  But, as always on this quest, seems like, “Out of Stock.”

Nevertheless, it’s described on the page as something worth drinking:

“This white wine is a blend of 50% Chardonnay and 50% Cortese which is the white grape of Piedmont in NW Italy. Crisp and clean and bursts with mineral and citrus fruit. Sourced from a co-op winery with 1100 acres of vineyards farmed by its members.”

One thing (if I can make a suggestion to the Bon Aquisti people?):  A lot of us (not-even) wine snobs would sure appreciate being able to back-order some of the really good wines.  A chat with your web developers, perhaps?  (Or, maybe there aren’t enough people who know what they want…just passing along an idea.)

You can kinda get to the taste of vino Bianco by taking a bottle of Chardonnay and putting in a cup or two of organic while grape juice.  But, it’s not the same, trust me.

Food, Life, and ESP

A note from the crackpot food research department around here.

I mentioned that 3-days before the snow here, both Elaine and I had a very distinct sense…but it was more like a knowing…that a weather event was coming.  Which it did.

In sensing it… I learned long-ago that when a “new sense” of something arises, it’s worth pausing whatever you’re doing, and trying to pinpoint where in your experience that sense is coming from.

For me, the sense was right next door to the memory of the sense of taste.

Which has opened up a whole new realm of personal energy research for me.  Let’s put this out there as a crackpot theory and let you roll it around for a while:

“People have five basic senses:  Taste, sight, touch, smell, and sound.  Therefore, in order to really improve your psychical inclinations, you need to “balance deeply” so that you’re always ready to receive insights from Universe.

Therefore, a daily practice to improve your Mind would be relaxing in a meditative state, and then “going around” to each of your five senses and remembering (as intensely as you can)  the absolute best and also the absolute worst of each of your senses.”

My thinking is that experiences (interactions with the external physical world) form something akin to psychical fence lines.  So, by going back and “patrolling your fence lines” regularly, you will become more attuned to the world around you.

This theory may not be as crazy as it sounds:  Consider the case of people who insist that they are improved by taking ice-cold dips and scalding hot saunas.  If you aren’t aware of his work, see The Wim Hof Method: Activate Your Full Human Potential.  Bring your own bathtub full of ice.

Thing is, when you look at his book – and others of the same genre, such as The Way of The Iceman: How The Wim Hof Method Creates Radiant, Longterm Health?Using The Science and Secrets of Breath Control, Cold-Training and Commitment – you will find these are mainly tapping into the space either side of tactility (touch).

We don’t have anything (*particularly) against ice-water bathing, for example (though the soap doesn’t come off as easily, what having some oils in most of it.  But we would rather do our Inner Work in a more rounded fashion.

Listening to loud rock and roll, disco, Blue Note jazz, and a large helping of R&B of the Memphis sort while drinking too much of a great wine and stuffing ourselves with perfect pizza.  While looking into each other’s eyes…and…yeah… well, TMI, maybe…

But if Wim Hof gets amazing results with touch-related extremism, maybe some of the 1-million Scoville would open up something (besides blowing the top off your head from heat)…

Contributions Still Welcome

Not sure how many more weekends our Saturday Gourmet columns will last.  Getting near to the “high work” time of year.  Spring chores like Garden, Yard, Shop, Projects and so forth.

So, if you have ever wanted to write (free, no compensation) an article to share with your fellow nibblers, send it on in.  We reserve the right to edit for spelling and content (if marginal).  Picture or two if you think it works.

Maybe we could do a little more than regular foody sites.

But, then again, most people don’t realize that all we take from Life is housed between our ears and some of those have to be memories of great times and tastes.

Write when you get hungry,

18 thoughts on “SatGourmet: Teriyaki, Pizza, and a Lost Wine”

  1. In certain Christian fundamentalist (small “f”), and in some Christian Mystic circles, there is an idea called a “Word Of Knowledge.”

    Distilled to essence, it holds that since Man is a transcendent being, direct knowledge, not from the simple physical senses, can come to one, not so much as a Voice, but as a quiet, intuitive, sudden “knowing.” Some believe this is a product of the Holy Ghost.

    I suspect, if there is anything to it, it’s more likely related to simple “intuition,” which almost everybody has experienced. To me, intuition is a sub-conscious conclusion, made from fragmentary or incomplete information — enough to allow a conclusion or prediction Not Based On Very Much That One Could Really Explain, and still be thought sane by one’s friends and relatives.

    I’ve experienced it — as have most others, I think. Sometimes, you Just Know Stuff.

    • Yeah – I have often thought of the same thing, Wm.

      Times when you just KNOW the right thing to do even without thinking.
      Stock trading legend W.D Gann, as I mentioned on PN a month of two back, thought of this as “spontaneous knowledge.”
      At its take-apart level, seems like there’s almost a DNA-coded map of our lives that it can take only one seemingly displaced bit of experience to trigger – as a whole, complete thought – which then allows the direct knowing to become conscious at the awareness level.
      To what degree we can “map” is the question – another one of the payoffs from dream work.

  2. When I read about the ice baths it reminded me of my dad. For several years before he became unable to get out, he suffered from horrible psoriasis mainly centered in his torso and groin area. Several attempts at relief with his Doctor failed to work. At one point he was told that if he lived on the coast he would be prescribed daily dunks in the sea and a couple of hours nude sunbathing. This got his maker mind working and he devised his own apparatus to test this hypothesis. Taking a spare stock tank from the closest feed pen he placed it on the patio, dumped in a 50lb sack of rock salt, and filled it with water followed by a period of nude sunbathing. Dad enjoyed relief using this method until the arrival of cold weather.
    Living out here in the sticks unexpected visitors are not an issue and Mom was always on hand to provide early warning and cover if needed, except one day. One exceptionally bright and sunny warm summer day a group of Jehova Witness ladies from a nearby town came by mid-treatment to share the word with Dad. In his defense, these ladies had visited a few times previously and Dad being devout Catholic enjoyed discussing the Gospel with them although sometimes he would become annoyed if they were persistent too long. Mom was busy and did not notice the ladies turn into the drive. Dad was mid soak when they came around the house then began thier presentation right off. After a few minutes, Dad tried to explain to the ladies his situation and that he needed to get out of the tub. This apparently did not register with them so Dad repeated that he was getting out of the tub. They continued so Dad simply stood up. This compelled some of the ladies to let out shrieks and high tail it for their car. This alerted Mom that something was going on and went to the back patio to find Dad sitting in his chair soaking up the sun buck naked as usual. Mom saw the cloud of dust following a car racing down the driveway and taking the turn onto our road without even slowing down. Mom asked Dad, who was that? The church ladies from town is all he said.

    Legend has it that they never visited again.


    • OTFLMAO….

      Long term psychological counseling would be needed if I was the one getting out of the tub…lol lol

    • To cure a skin or a mouth sore, I make a salt and water paste and apply for a few minutes, then rinse. If left too long, the salt will cause an irritation.

      My husband said in the Navy, they would take a swim in the ocean to help with a skin problem.

  3. oh noo mr G!

    5 basic I am guessing here that clairaudiance, clairvision ect are not “basic” in Ure world ? Why did U stop listening and looking?

    Daily practice 24/7 is key for yx qigong students – not just the meditation practice – 24/7 “qigong state of mind’ -cultivating virtue- must accumulate..
    For the elderly, “the greatest benefit available through qigong practice is the effective and direct extension of life
    .Practicing qigong accesses stored nutrition which has been accumulating for decades, and enables one to tap into this powerful energy. This is critical, because many, if not most, elderly never make full use of this highly effective energy”.- dr. YX

    Screw the OTO and goldendawn losers(globalists/politicians) -they got NO real power -just emptiness and synth.drugs – everyone expires in terror from enclosing darkness-darker than the darkest black -hello aleister

    Got Lightz?

  4. “Cribari vino Bianco?”

    You can buy the wine.. I prefer making the wine..the rum flavored wine is actually better than captain’s rum.. not as potent.. the final recipe coming soon with pictures..because its a wine and not a distilled product its alcohol
    Content is half of the distilled product. You could do fractional freezing or the old world freeze distillation..
    Asian cuisine. Thank you so much for the recipe..have you tried crunchy rice?
    2 cups of salt in a frying pan…
    Get the salt hot..
    Then take a half cup of parboiled rice…
    Drop the dry rice in the hot salt stir constantly while the salt fries and pops.. as it browns take your strainer spoon and scoop the browned popped rice out soft the salt out of the rice.. enjoy.
    Makes a great crunchy topping or a wonderful snack..flavor it how you like it..
    I like it with quinoa onions green peppers chopped mixed in my rice.. with soy sauce..
    Or shoyu…wanna try and make some..
    43 oz dry soybeans (the white or beige type)
    43 oz wheat berries Soft wheat gives better flavor than hard wheat
    .27oz aspergillus orzyae starter meant for shoyu.. you also use this starter for cheese and can acquire it pretty easily from a wine cheese making shop
    For the Brine
    29 oz. sea salt
    1 gallon water
    Heres a good webpage that will simplify the process it really isnt much different than making wine. The real process is making your mash.. before I put the starter on it I used amylase while I cooked the wheat..and soy beans.. this breaks it down to the starches and allows the cheese starter to work in creating the bacteria.. I used a large home made incubator for soy curd and yogurt..for the culture to grow..

  5. Just a suggestion,( I get this lighthouse freeze dried garlic by the single bottle locally but have included a link so you can see what I’m talking about. It probably isn’t as good as fresh depending on your luck with fresh and how long it takes to get through a head. If you grind it, its better than any other garlic powder. I always like keeping a jar or two on hand cause you never know.

  6. “One of these days, I keep threatening to order a bottle of Mad Dog 357 ECO 1 Million Scoville Ultra Pure Pepper Extract and try adding ONE DROP to the teriyaki. ”

    My burn of choice is “Dave’s Insanity Sauce,” because it is the hottest (180,000 Scoville) hot sauce I’ve ever found which actually has a taste. I’ve got some of that million Scoville stuff — never use it. A friend ran a concession stand. One day a week he offered BBQ ribs in either mild or hot. He would add one drop of Dave’s to a half-gallon of his sauce to make it hot. Two drops made the sauce so hot it lost its taste and became simply, generically hot. When I make chili I add four drops of Dave’s to seven quarts — one drop about every 6hrs. The chili keeps its taste and the heat becomes a subtle burn which lasts for about 20 minutes. The effect is kinda like Jamaican Hellfire, but more subtle and flavorful. If’fn you go the million Scoville route, go really carefully so’s not to lose the taste in the heat…

    “on went a properly revised Di Giorno thin crust Suprema”

    ‘Had a friend who was a pizza professional — worked for every chain from East of Chicago to Domino’s & Papa John’s, and learned his craft at three different pizzerias in Chicago. His specialty was “crust creation.” According to him, “Jiffy Pizza Crust Mix” is the best pizza base, ever…” He spent 30 years, trying to make a “mass-reproducible” crust as good as Jiffy, and retired, defeated.

    Just throwin’ it out there, in case you’re ever tempted to build a pizza from scratch…

    • Since this is recipe day, I’ll give it a shot. Been throught 10-15 pizza dough recipes found this one to be as good as I can get:

      1 cup + 1 Tbsp 00 flour ( I use Caputo, 00 is the fine grind)
      1 cup + 1 Tbsp + 2 Tsp all purpose flour
      1 Tsp Salt
      3/4 Tsp Yeast
      1 Tsp Extra virgin olive oil
      1 cup of warm water

      Makes two 12″ diameter pies.

      Bloom yeast in cup warm water. Mix dry ingredients and EVOO in large bowl or mixer. Add water yeast mixture and mix until a dough forms. Place bowl covered in warm area and let proof for one hour. After proofing can be used immediately. I prefer to make the dough at least a day ahead and store in the fridge (up to 5 or 6 days), gets a slight sour taste. Found the sweet spot for cooking pies is 650 degrees on the deck (pizza stone) . Bon Appetite

  7. “Cribari vino Bianco?”

    Oh I forgot heres the link for the wine…right from the winery.

    Or you can ask the churches around your neck of the woods. It’s common sacrament wine..

    Making a nice white wine is really easy and cheap.. total cost without bottle and cork label is less than half a buck.. unless you buy the really good grapes..then your talking up to ten dollars ..

    • My love for making wine stems from a vineyard..and a wedding..
      My wife when she was very little spent a great deal of time on her uncles farm. Do to an accident her parents were hospitalized and her uncle had plenty of room and a little girl her age..anyway.. her uncle sold the farm and the new owner turned it into a vineyard.
      We make periodic trips where theres a deep emotional connection to the place. Like all vineyards they have the taste testing , bands .. seasonal activities etc. When I decided to learn how.. I had always had a fascination for the process .. I must have been 8 or nine my sister tried it unsuccessfully.
      Then I bought a good bottle of wine for the kids wedding.. shoot a couple hundred for a bottle and it wasn’t that special tasting at all.. i decided right then and there that it was something i would try. historically during a depression it’s a good trade and gift object. Then when we went a year without an income it came in handy. I have had a few failures here and there..
      Cornflake wine is interesting lol but not one i will make again in the near future.. but I’ve got more successes than failures..

  8. “I get this lighthouse freeze dried garlic by the single bottle locally but have included a link so you can see what I’m talking about.”

    Bob.. I built a freeze dryer.. but hated the fact that I had to babysit it.. in the end I got a couple of these..

    The company is wonderful to work with.. check out Betty’s harvest right freeze dryer group on Facebook..and youtube..
    The average family will toss out a couple of thousand in food. Which helps pay for the system..
    Have a food stock but your can goods are getting close to expiration..freeze dry them. Hamburger same thing..I did raw steaks but prefer to just do cooked meat. Ice cream I love to freeze dry ice cream then blend it to a powder package it then to reconstitute it with the old hand freezer just add water ice and salt..prepackaged meals..
    Quick clot bandages.. we all know how that can go getting them dried.. the freeze dryer is the trick.
    Onions are the worst thing though and I will a hazard warning right now.. eating fresh sliced onions that have been freeze dried .. well dont eat them package them up and store them away. if you do .. you won’t stop eating them. I bet I ate twenty pounds of dried onions in one sitting. My guess is garlic would be the same..

    Mushrooms.. I love freeze dried mushrooms.. but buy those from
    Emergency essentials..great people..

    • Freeze drying mushrooms turns the oil black..
      You can eliminate that but the cost becomes more than buying them..

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