Sunday, February 13, 2011

my tingly egg salad sandwich


i'm still figuring things out.

i wonder if that will ever change. if i will be, like, 75 years hold (hopefully) and be like "i'm still figuring things out". when i say the statement "i'm still figuring things out" to myself, i still feel like a punk ass kid and not the "responsible adult" that i am.

i have definitely been in a mood these days. i knew that i needed some time when i changed my friday evening plans and stayed home instead. i made myself another experimental bourbon cocktail, took a long leisurely bath, and read a few chapters of mary roach's bonk. ms. roach is so funny and rather obsessive about research in a great way. then on saturday, i hit the saturday market and spent most of the day and evening sleeping with snippets of journaling and pictures in between the sleeping. i think it everything (mostly exhaustion) was catching up with me.

today, things are looking much better. thank the gawds.

while i have been working today, i have also ducked into the kitchen to experiment with making pickles! i currently have a jar of radishes pickling in a mix of sichuan/szechwan peppercorns, paper lantern peppers, kosher salt, sugar, and apple cider vinegar. if i like how they turn out then i'll post the "making of" pics as well as the final product. this is my first attempt at making pickles. because i made the pickles this morning, i had sichuan peppercorns on the brain when i was thinking about what to make for lunch. i had some hard boiled eggs in the fridge and thought that would be good with some of the acme baguette i had in my kitchen. then it hit me....i could make an egg salad with sichuan peppercorns! i've never had that before but i was willing to bet it would be tasty.

so i ground up some of the sichuan peppercorns. btw...you can also roast them first if you prefer....i didn't feel like it today. i ground up a lot more than i needed since i figured i could make a batch of sichuan peppercorn salt as a condiment to cook with or put on noodles (like soba for example...i'm still on my soba noodle kick) or roasted veggies (like carrots).

the grounded sichuan is on the left and not-ground sichuan peppercorns are on the right.

the sichuan peppercorns aren't "hot" or "burn". they do induce the "tingle" or numbing effect on the lips and tongue...but by themselves...they aren't the kind of hot/burn that one gets with a habanero, scotch bonnet, or a ghost pepper. the hot factor from folks cooking with sichuan peppers comes in with the other hot chilies one cooks with them....which produces the culmination of effects...you know....the hot and tingle...which, i do adore.

but not for a cold egg salad sandwich.

so i made the sichuan salt by mixing together equal parts ground sichuan and salt.



pretty easy huh?

then i added a few dashes to a bowl that had two chopped eggs and mayo in it....



then i split open a section of acme sweet baguette (which had been toasting/warming in the oven) and added the egg salad...




while i was taking the pics, i remembered that i also had some wild arugula that i picked up at the market yesterday and thought that would be perfect with the sandwich.



this turned out quite well and my palate enjoyed it. the sichuan was a nice surprise to the palate as i normally don't associate sichuan pepper with egg & mayo.....and the peppery-ness of the arugula was a nice kick as well....all without overwhelming the tasty egg and bread.



as i was finishing it up, my lips all a tingle.....i was thinking how i'm surprised that i haven't seen this on a lunchtime menu in the bay area. actually, someone probably already has and i just haven't seen or heard of it. yet, it felt nice to discover something in my kitchen through random experimenting. although discovering this combo wasn't what i was originally hoping to figure out while puttering around in my kitchen today, but then sometimes it really is more about what we discover on the journey....isn't it?

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