Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Tulips and Star Sand

My best friend sent me a box of Tulip luncheon meat a few months ago, since it is unavailable here. Tulip is similar to Spam, but it has a meatier, slightly more intense bacon flavor but isn't as sweet as bacon Spam. I have found that Tulip is superior to Spam fried in yakisoba, fried rice, and as a topping in ramen.  

365-137 Okinawa Soba Tulip
Day 137/365 - Tulip musubi LOL

I haven't tried to replicate Tulip musubi. I can't imagine it being horrible; however, the sauce may need to be adjusted for the difference in flavor.

Earlier in the week, I screamed in the grocery store when a red, gold, and indigo block print design with a drummer, typical of Okinawan designs, caught my eye from afar.  I gave up wishing for Okinawan food in Cleveland a long time ago, so this discovery almost made me faint.

365-137 Okinawa Soba
Day 137/365 - Okinawa soba!

While it isn't as good as Okinawa soba served in Okinawa; really, when is an instant packaged version ever as good? Well, excluding yakisoba - Sapporo Ichiban's yakisoba is fantastic. Okay, Ajinomoto pork gyoza is quite good, also.

If the noodles appear dissimilar to soba's round dark buckwheat appearance, Okinawa soba utilizes a wide and flat noodle made of wheat. When the noodles are sold fresh, they are lightly coated in oil, have a yellower hue, and is denser.

As anyone can imagine, I nursed this bowl of noodle soup with spinach, egg, and shichimi togarashi. The powdered broth that came with the noodles is katsuo-based.

365-137 Okinawa Soba Tulip Stamp
Day 137/365

Despite my suspicion that the noodles availability is a fluke, finding Okinawa soba all the way out here has given me hope that, one day, Tulip may be available here.

- Cassaendra

2 deep thoughts:

Mrs. L 27 October, 2011 14:36  

Oh hello! Tulip? Where does one find it? (since I just had some Spam Musubi yesterday and was telling my husband we need to learn to make the stuff).

We spent a long time in the Japantown grocery store a few days ago waiting for the sushi place to open for dinner. We came out with some intriguing products to try. Love that store.

Cassaendra 29 October, 2011 09:12  

Hi Mrs. L,

I wish I knew where to get this in your area. From what I have read, they have a really small market share in the US. In UK, they ARE Spam literally.

I've seen it for sale online with an origin of sale in Europe and balked at the shipping charge, but for a few seconds was tempted. :P

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