Pancakes of J.S. Pancake Cafe in Japan

Chestnut Mont Blanc Pancakes

Pancakes with Shine Muscat (grapes from Yamanashi Prefecture)

Pancake with Golden Pumpkin Pudding

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Korean Meets Mexican: Pork Belly Kimchi Tacos

Ingredients

2 tablespoons soju (Korean rice wine)
1 tablespoon gochujang (Korean chili paste)
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon sugar
10 grams garlic, grated (2 teaspoons)
10 grams ginger, grated (2 teaspoons)
1 pound pork belly, thinly sliced
2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
4 ounces onion, sliced
8 small tortillas
mild white cheese, shredded
kimchi
2 stalks green onion, finely chopped
sesame seeds

Method

  1. In a bowl, whisk together the soju, gochujang, soy sauce, sugar, garlic and ginger. Add the pork and mix to combine. Let this marinate while you prepare the other ingredients.
  2. Put the sesame oil and onions into a frying pan over medium high heat and sauté until the onions are just starting to brown around the edges.
  3. Add the marinated pork, and spread it out into a single layer. Fry until browned on one side, and then stir fry until the pork is cooked through.
  4. To make the tacos, heat the tortillas and place a layer of pork, followed by the cheese, some kimchi, green onion and sesame seeds.

Makes 8 tacos.

Source: PBS Food

In Pictures: Foods of L’Enclume in Cartmel, UK

2 Michelin stars and the best restaurant in UK of The Good Food Guide

The Restaurant

The Rise of Authentic Chinese Food in the UK

Fuchsia Dunlop wrote . . . . . . .

In their tiny restaurant opposite the Emirates football stadium in north London, Wei Guirong and her husband Song Yong do a thriving trade in the traditional snacks of Xi’an, the capital of Shaanxi province and home of the Terracotta Army.

They make their own flatbreads and stuff them with juicy pulled pork, stretch out ribbony noodles from a wheatflour dough and bathe them in sizzling oil awakened by chillies and garlic.

The opening up of the myriad tastes of China to Britons is only just beginning

They also offer Xi’an’s most famous speciality, niu rou pao mo, “soaked flatbreads” with glassy noodles and sliced beef in an aromatic broth. Their restaurant, Xi’an Impression, may be the only culinary outpost of Shaanxi in the UK, but it’s one of a new generation of regional restaurants that is opening our eyes to the diversity of Chinese cuisines.

Twenty years ago, Chinese food in Britain generally meant an Anglicised version of Cantonese food: sweet-and-sour pork, egg-fried rice and spring rolls. More authentic dishes were often hidden away on Chinese-language menus, and even the dim-sum lunch, a highlight of Cantonese eating, was largely a secret shared by the Chinese and occasional Sinophiles in the capital.

Since then, the rise of China on the international stage has fostered interest in Chinese culture in general, while growing numbers of Chinese people in Britain have created a new market for more authentic Chinese flavours. Outside the Chinese community, the opening of Alan Yau’s Hakkasan in 2001 brought a new glamour to dim sum, while the Ping Pong chain helped to bring it into the mainstream.

In the past decade, Sichuanese food has blazed a fiery trail across the Chinese culinary scene, and in London, you can find restaurants specialising in the foods of Hunan, Xinjiang and the Dongbei or north-eastern provinces. Even the brilliant but often neglected flavours of the Jiangnan or Lower Yangtze region (including Shanghai, Jiangsu and Zhejiang) now have their local advocates in the shape of supper clubs run by chefs Jason Li and Lillian Luk.

But the opening up of the myriad tastes of China to Britons is only just beginning. China is more of a continent than a country: a vast land mass with widely differing terrains, climates and cultures, from the deserts and alluvial plains of the north through fertile rice-growing regions to the tropical rainforests of the extreme south.

Beyond the simple division of China into the wheat-eating north and rice-eating south, the country is often carved up into four “great regional cuisines”, corresponding roughly to the points of the compass. In the north, there is lu cai, the stately cooking of Shandong Province and Beijing, and the backbone of the late-imperial tradition. Here, you’ll find a plethora of wheaten foods including noodles, flatbreads and dumplings, a predilection for lamb and mutton bound up with the influence of northern Chinese Muslims, and the heavy flavours of garlic and vinegar.

In the south can be found the fresh, bright tastes of yue cai, Cantonese cuisine, notorious in other parts of China for its highly adventurous approach to ingredients; in the west, the dazzling, technicolour flavours of chuan cai, the Sichuanese, with its infamous use of chillies and Sichuan pepper. Looking east, there’s the delicate, refined cooking of the Lower Yangtze region – su cai or huaiyang cai – known for its virtuoso knifework, fine ingredients and sophisticated gastronomic culture.

Another, later, view proposes “eight great cuisines” corresponding to the culinary traditions of the most influential provinces. Even this scheme, however, neglects several provinces, not to mention the cooking styles that straddle regions – such as Buddhist vegetarian cuisine – and the foods of China’s many ethnic minorities.

In truth, Chinese cuisine is like a fractal pattern, in which the closer you look, the more localised distinctions become apparent. Within the Cantonese south, for example, the remarkable food of the Chiuchow region stands out for its own, particular character.

Many local speciality ingredients are not only unavailable outside China, but even outside their particular Chinese regions, such as the snaking, white-flowered waterweed from the Erhai lake in Dali, the delectable mud snails of Ningbo and the fermented amaranth stalks of Shaoxing. Given this, it’s not surprising that only a glimpse of the extraordinary gastronomic wealth of China is accessible abroad.

In the UK, however, the newly available regional cuisines offer a tantalising glimpse of Chinese culinary possibilities. Meanwhile, Chinese supermarkets stock an ever-increasing range of ingredients for the home cook, including not only the core seasonings of the Chinese kitchen, but authentic Sichuanese chilli bean paste and fresh produce such as yellow chives and chrysanthemum greens.

Even mainstream supermarkets are catching on to the growing interest in Chinese cooking. Many now stock the essentials: not just soy sauce and sesame oil but rice vinegar, Sichuan pepper and rice wine, as well as a few essential vegetables such as pak choy, Chinese cabbage and ginger. And I was staggered recently to find on sale in my local Sainsbury’s jars of lao gan ma, “Old Godmother’s’ chilli and black bean relish”, an addictive sauce with a cultish following in China.

Source: The Telegraph

Researchers Discover New Immunotherapy Combination Effective at Killing Cancer Cells

Kelly Johnston wrote . . . . . . .

Immunotherapy is an emerging field in the global fight against cancer, even though scientists and clinicians have been working for decades to find ways to help the body’s immune system detect and attack cancerous cells. Doug Mahoney’s lab at the University of Calgary recently discovered an immunotherapy that uses existing cancer drugs in a whole new way.

“What we found is a combination of cancer therapies that complement each other in helping the immune system clear the cancer,” says Mahoney, PhD, assistant professor in the departments of Microbiology, Immunology and Infectious Diseases, and Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at the Cumming School of Medicine and member of the Arnie Charbonneau Cancer and Alberta Children’s Hospital Research Institutes. “Our results suggest that we’ve been looking at these cancer drugs the wrong way — as tumour-targeting drugs — instead of what we now feel is their most important biological role: as immune stimulating therapy.”

Learning how to ramp up the immune system

Cancer cells are smart; they know how to hide from the body’s own immune system. Cancer cells also know how to control certain immune cells. Like a cruel form of mind control, some cancerous tumours can reprogram some immune cells to “block” other immune cells from attacking, leaving the tumour free to grow.

Treatments aimed at revving up the immune system’s attack on the cancer may be the most promising approach to cancer therapy since combination chemotherapy. Yet studies have shown single therapies targeting only one part of the immune system have been effective in only a small percentage of patients. Results from Mahoney’s research study are consistent with many other recent findings that smart combinations of therapies are even more effective in battling some cancers.

Study uses two-pronged approach

For this study, researchers combined two therapies, each targeting a different part of the immune system. The first is an injection of a man-made virus. That injection puts the “gas on” the immune system followed by a second injection of a drug being developed as a chemotherapy. That drug stops the tumour from reprogramming immune cells.

“The combination of the drugs allowed the immune cells to do what they’re supposed to. We were able to cure cancer in 20 to 60 per cent of our animal models,” adds Mahoney. “It’s a very promising result against two very deadly forms of cancer: an aggressive breast cancer and a rare pediatric muscle cancer.”

When the researchers added a third complementary immunotherapy, the cure rate went as high as 80 to 100 per cent. Results of the study are published in Nature Communications.

Drugs seen in a new light after two decades

“These results change a lot,” says Mahoney. “What’s interesting is that neither drug was developed as an immunotherapy. For nearly two decades they have been studied for their ability to directly kill cancer cells. In viewing these drugs through the lens of immunotherapy, it will impact the way we study them and try to figure out how to make them work better. From a clinical perspective, it changes the way we will try to translate these drugs,” says Mahoney.

Mahoney says we’ll know more about the impact this study will have on cancer patients in the next five years. His lab is one of three in the world looking at this immunotherapy combination. In the other two locations, clinical trials are about to start based on a similar results.

Source: University of Calgory


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