Back in January, I had the privilege to be flown to L.A to be a menu and photography consultant for Bamboo Izakaya. It was an amazing experience thanks to CEO Jeremy Umland, Chef Toshio Sakamaki and marketing manager Camilla Zohn, who took such good care of me, making sure every detail was taken care of. Spending a few days right on Ocean Boulevard, where the restaurant is located, was a nice respite from the chilly, schizophrenic weather New York City suffered from. Along with sampling some outstanding izakaya classics, I managed to get a little sun kissed on the cheeks.
Since then I’ve become Bamboo Izakaya’s blog administrator and content writer. My part-time position is to talk about all things izakaya, share quick recipes and snippets of info about Japan. I’m really happy to be part of the team and in the pursuit of integrating izakayas into the American culture!
During my stay in California, I spent many hours in the kitchen with chef Toshi, testing and working on recipes together. Quick fry bamboo shoots (takenoko kara age) was one dish I tried that blew me away! Light and perfectly seasoned, they’re the perfect alternative to potato chips! After watching chef Toshi prepare these in the kitchen (I won’t give away his recipe since it’s one of Bamboo’s specialties!) I came back to NYC feeling inspired. The version I created is very simple and quick to make, and is accompanied by a mayo miso dip passed along by a Japanese friend of mine (hi Mali!)
It’s the ultimate snack because it feels like junk food, but without the guilt!
Put the bamboo slices on a paper towel and cover with another piece. Lightly press to remove excess water.
In a bowl, add flour and salt and mix well.
Put enough oil in a large pan to cover the bottom by about an inch. Turn the heat to high.
Add bamboo shoots to the flour bowl and lightly toss until coated evenly (the layer of flour should be very thin).
When the oil is very hot but not smoking (throw a little flour; if it sizzles right away, it's ready), add bamboo shoots (do not crowd the pan as this will lower the oil temperature. You may need to do this in batches) and cook for 2 minutes, until they're a light beige/brown color. Rest on paper towels and repeat until all the bamboo shoots have been quickly fried.