Learn how to make it here!
Ok, ok, if you’ve been reading this blog for awhile, you’ll know I hate eggs. However, I’m determined to turn a new leaf. Just two months ago I ate a boiled egg that was in some soup my mom made. I was very proud of myself. When a commenter asked me to make the Soufflé Omelette from Food Wars!, I thought I would give it a try because it just looks so fluffy and yummy.
Check it out on Crunchyroll right here.
Ok everybody, as your loyal food-blogger I feel it’s my duty to call cooking BS when I see it, and boy oh boy, was there a lot of BS going on in Takumi’s Shokugeki.
Takumi competed in an infamous Shokugeki where his prized mezzaluna was at stake and…..SPOILERS……lost. It was a frustrating loss, and heart-breaking to boot. Since I prize my kitchen tools very highly, and am actually operating without most of them at the moment (more on that tragedy later), I actually feel really bad for him. Cooking without your trusty tools can be really unsettling. However, I have a bone to pick with the creators of this series.
Out of sympathy for Takumi, I decided to make his four-layer semi freddo, replicated as closely to the source material as possible. A praline layer on the top with almonds and hazelnuts, then a lemony-almond semi freddo with meringue, a lemon curd that uses olive oil instead of butter, ending with a genoise liberally doused in limoncello to moisten the cake.
For one thing, Mimasaka is well known for using the EXACT SAME ingredients as his competitor in the EXACT SAME dish. All well and good, but the ingredient that pushes him ahead of Takumi is the use of preserved lemons, made with lemons and salt. Ok, ok, surely Takumi had those ingredients. BUT, as stated in the show, preserved lemons take weeks before they’re ready. And, I’m sorry to say, but once they’re ready, it’s no longer just lemons and salt- it’s a preserved lemon. A whole new ingredient that Mimasaka would have had to make on the spot in the Shokugeki in order to adhere to his own weird rules. Except that this dish takes several weeks to make. How did he do that in the span of a single Shokugeki?
I know we’re operating in the anime world here, but can I also make it known that somehow, someway, Takumi and Mimasaka essentially made ice cream during a food competition with NO FREEZE TIME? Hear me out here, I’m well-aware that there are fancy ice cream makers that can fully freeze the ice cream base and pop it out, ready to eat, in no time flat. However, the point of a semi freddo is that you don’t NEED an ice cream maker to make it. That is one of the great benefits of a semi freddo. Semi freddo means semi-frozen, and is traditionally made by pumping the base materials full of air and then freezing WITHOUT using a ice cream maker. And when you do that, a semi freddo needs at LEAST 12 hours to harden completely, as I ever-so-tragically discovered when I only waited 8 hours for my four layer version to harden. So what’s the point of making a semi-freddo if you somehow cheat the freezing stage? HOW DID THEY DO THIS IN A SINGLE SHOKUGEKI??
Do you sense some frustration and sadness? I’m kinda getting ahead of myself here. Let me start at the beginning of this truly soul-crushing story.
I decided to catch up on Food Wars!, partly because I really like the series, and partly because I was doing research for this article, looking for something new to make. I was having a grand old time, and when I saw Takumi’s dessert, I was really inspired! A semi freddo! Lemon curd with olive oil! Toasted nuts! This was truly a dish meant for the great and mighty. I decided to set about making this dish with great fervor. I couldn’t find a recipe that even came close to replicating this entire dish, so I had to do my best to find individual recipes for each part of the whole dessert. I drew from the wisdom of our Lord and Savior, Ina Garten, the great Southern Monarch, Paula Deen, as well as a handful of other internet denizens who helped me understand what genoise is, the traditional components of a semi freddo, and the basic ingredients for a lemon semi freddo. That’s right gentlefolk of the internet, I did so much research on this dessert my brain almost exploded. I couldn’t even comprehend making dinner in addition to this, so I went and got WingStop to calm the pitter patter of my excited heart.
So busy am I with my other jobs, I decided to start this at 7 pm last night to give myself adequate time. I didn’t finish until 2 am, and here is the reason why: Three out of the four layers of this semi-freddo require extensive aeration. And I do mean extensive. No trouble for any old person at home who has a hand or stand mixer. Except I’m not at home, I’m living in the Bay Area for a few weeks to do some work here, and my friend’s kitchen is woefully ill-equipped compared to my own kitchen.
The funny thing is that I actually stole a Kitchen Aid stand mixer from a very un-deserving friend for recipes such as this one, but it’s at home, with all my other kitchen tools. (He moved out of his old apartment and abandonded his mixer in a closet, so I rescued it, cleaned it up, and haven’t bothered to tell him I took it. After a year, he still hasn’t asked about it. I sure hope he doesn’t read this.) So, lacking a stand or even a hand mixer, I decided to hand-whip EVERYTHING that required mixing. This includes: The genoise cake mix, lemon curd, the zabaglione for the semi freddo, the meringue for the semi freddo, and the whipped cream for the semi freddo. This seemed daunting, but I figured “hey, I like challenges, so why not?” A day later, with a seriously hurting wrist and suffering from physical exhaustion, I could give you a whole list of reasons “why not”, so just take my word for it and use a hand or stand mixer. You’ll thank yourself later.
I worked so hard on this. And in the end, I made two big mistakes: praline thickness and freeze time. On the upside, this dessert is frickin’ DELICIOUS. My god, it is really heavenly. It doesn’t matter that mine ultimately fell apart, because it still tastes amazing. I highly recommend you try this! But, it isn’t for the faint of heart, and if you get impatient waiting for things to freeze completely, you might struggle with this recipe, as I did. Let’s get into it, and buckle up. Four layers means there are a LOT of steps.
Here’s what we’re recreating:
OK, some notes before we get started: 1) This is going to take a decent amount of time to make, even if you use a hand or stand mixer. Prepare yourself. (And that’s another thing! This would take a REALLY LONG TIME TO MAKE, probably around two hours. What did everyone do while they were waiting around? 2) This makes a LOT. Prepare your pans.
You need some kind of container to put this in that is rectangular and long. A loaf pan works. I found a plastic container from Daiso that had sharp corners and was perfect for what I wanted, so I used that. It should be at least 9 inches long, 3 inches tall, and 4-5 inches wide. I also ended up using another plastic container for leftover materials, so as not to waste anything.
So this semi freddo has four layers. Semi freddo refers to the frozen part in the middle- not anything else. The semi freddo itself is made up of three components, the cream, meringue, and zabaglione. I will list ingredients by layer. All recipes are adapted from the links above, mostly to accomodate the volume of product I needed.
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 3/4 cup dark brown sugar
- pinch of salt
- 1 1/2 tbsp corn syrup
- 1/2 cup evaporated milk
- 1 tbsp butter
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 3/4 cup sliced almonds (I couldn’t find hazelnuts. If you can, do half and half.)
- 2 lemons and zest of both lemons
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 6 tbsp olive oil
- 4 eggs
- 1/4 cup lemon juice
- pinch of salt
- 5 large eggs, room temperature
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 3/4 cup cake flour, sifted twice (You can make your own cake flour using regular flour and cornstarch!)
- about 1/4 cup limoncello (this is alcoholic- if you are under 21, either get a parent to help, or use a simple syrup)
Semi freddo layer:
- 1 3/4 cup whipping cream (Cream component)
- 4 egg yolks, 2 egg whites (Zabaglione and meringue components)
- 1/2 cup sliced almonds (Final mix in)
- 1 cup and 1/4 cup sugar (Meringue and zabaglione components)
- 1/2 cup lemon juice (Zabalgione component)
- 1/4 tsp salt (Zabaglione component)
- 1 tsp cream of tartar (Meringue component)
- 1 1/2 lemons
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/3 cup water
Check it out at Crunchyroll right here.
I am so excited about this week’s post! Besides the fact that it’s my birthday on the 30th, the new season of Food Wars is starting soon, which means that it’s a better time than ever to try out some new dishes from the anime. I started reading the manga to get a sense of what to expect food-wise from the new season, and I was charmed by a chapter where Soma teaches kids to make food.
Hey all! Read my current blog post out on Crunchy Roll here! 😀
Another week, another casual occasion to use a hatchet to make a meal. What’s that you say? A hatchet? Why yes. A hatchet. That’s the best part of making this meal, the part where you get to tenderize the beef. I didn’t have a meat tenderizer, so I went into the garage to see what I could find. I couldn’t find a hammer, but I did find a hatchet. The blade was obviously inadequate for meat tenderizing, but the blunt end of the hatchet was perfect for meat smashing. Needless to say, I didn’t ever think I’d use a hatchet to help cook a meal, but it was a really good time.
Have you every accidentally spilled curry spices into your eyes?
I’ve had a very eventful Sunday. I wanted to try making this dish because I couldn’t find a suitable recipe already online, so I decided to invent one. Let me tell you, that was no mean feat. I’ve only made risotto once before, last week for dinner, and risotto is kind of tricky to get right. There’s a lot of stirring involved and many taste-tests to make sure your rice is getting soft. The good news is that now I can justify my obsession with ice cream because of how many calories I worked off just by stirring the damn rice for so long.
The other TWO reasons this dish was hard to make were that 1) I hate eggs and have never made an omelette before and 2) I’ve never made curry from scratch before, which I knew I had to do or risk being a facsimile of a sham, living in Soma’s looming shadow. The challenge was, after all, about creating the finest curry dish imaginable. Nonetheless, I have certainly accomplished a delicious dish, and I even managed to follow the hints dropped in the anime to make it as authentic as possible! 🙂 Yay authenticity! (It only cost me about $60 to buy all the spices and other ingredients required. Hue hue, boo T_T goodbye money, rip my bank account)
Without further ado, read on to learn how to craft this magnificent dish!!!
As a college student, I can relate to Mirai. She is really poor, is always looking for money to buy new food, and always eats A TON. We’re basically the same person. Besides the whole, you know, blood sword thingy she’s got going on. That’s pretty unsual, but I could cut off a finger or something and make a pretty convincing cosplay using my own blood. I’d slowly bleed out and probably die, but you know, cosplaying is SERIOUS BUSINESS. Ok, is that too gross to think about? I’m grossing myself out…
One thing Mirai eats in the series is Gyudon, which literally means beef bowl. The reason she eats this is because Gyudon is really really inexpensive in Japan. It’s made with the cheapest cut of beef, simmered down to be tender and juicy in a delicious slightly sweet-salty broth. In face, this dish is so popular in Japan it can be found in a number of other anime, notably Steins;Gate (right) and Shokugeki no Soma (left).
The thing about this dish is that it’s AMAZING. It tastes so good and is incredibly satisfying. It’s definitely one of those comfort foods, and since I’m cold on the West Coast and missing Japan, I’m going to make it for the blog here today. Below is the Gyudon we’ll be recreating.