516: Omurice

Matthew Amster-Burton 0:00

Hi. I'm Matthew and I'm Molly and this is spilled milk. The show where we cook something delicious. Eat it all and you can't have any

Molly 0:10

today we are talking about actually Matthew, will you say this word first?

Matthew Amster-Burton 0:16


Molly 0:17

omurice. Yes, we are talking about it's basically a Japanese fried rice omelet is that like maybe the most concise way of describing it?

Matthew Amster-Burton 0:27

Yeah, I think it is. A it is an omelet full of fried rice. But it's it's more than that.

Molly 0:33

Oh, it's so much more than that, as we will discuss today.

Matthew Amster-Burton 0:37

So usually when we do an episode on a specific Japanese food item, it's because it's something that I like or you and I like that we're just eager to talk about this is something that I have almost never eaten until like the last week or so. And we're doing it because it's something that our guests has strong feelings about.

Molly 0:59

And in fact, one of the one of the first things I ever read by our guest, who is a writer, was this article about or an essay really about omurice in the New Yorker. Anyway, switch switch, tell them who the guest is Matt.

Matthew Amster-Burton 1:16

Okay. Our guest is gonna be Brian Washington, the author of memorial and a great essayist, and food writer, and he is a real lover of omurice. And so we figured once, once we heard that Brian might be interested in being on our show, this is what we had to talk about.

Molly 1:33

And basically, we're really nervous.

Matthew Amster-Burton 1:37

Because we're big fans of his work. And we don't know a lot about this dish. But other than that, we're super duper prepared.

Molly 1:45

This is considered a food that the kids love in Japan. So we're kids.

Matthew Amster-Burton 1:51

We are kids kids at heart. Yeah, you know, like when? When game says it for like, ages nine to 99 First of all, like if I if I was 100, I'd be very offended by that. And then secondly, we can't play that game because we're too young. Yeah. At heart,

Molly 2:07

at heart. Okay, well, Matthew, should we started off by just saying a little bit more about like a memory lane. I mean, I know like we've already admitted Well, this is a dish that I have not yet had and in fact, the first time I make it, which is going to be later today, actually I'm gonna use I'm going to use Bryan Washington's recipe from the New Yorker,

Matthew Amster-Burton 2:25

I highly recommend that so my omurice Memory Lane is really being afraid of it because it involves ketchup and I'm deathly afraid of ketchup as you know and and condiments in general almost always involves ketchup not always but usually so if you if you like ask someone in Japan to like picture a classic OMO days it's going to be a fried rice made with chicken and catch up then wrapped in a in a thin omelet and then drizzled with more ketchup and like this is this is the thing you'll see like in manga like the ketchup drizzle is always drawn exactly the same, like you know seeing you this way. And like if you order it at a at a yoshoku like Japanese western style food restaurant, it will come like that usually.

Molly 3:11

Okay, so the word omurice is the beginning of it the same as omelet.

Matthew Amster-Burton 3:17

Yeah, onward it is in Japanese, so it's nice.

Molly 3:22

Okay, so it's basically a thin omelet with a fried rice filling, and it almost always contains chicken almost always contains ketchup.

Matthew Amster-Burton 3:31

Yeah, one funny thing about is that the rice inside is almost always called chicken nice. But it is often called Chicken nicer even if it is not made with chicken. Okay, that chicken nices has come to me in this kind of style of like ketchup flavored fried rice.

Molly 3:47

And does it taste like ketchup once you cook the ketchup into the rice?

Matthew Amster-Burton 3:51

Well, maybe we should like leave that as as kind of a teaser because first of all, I want to I want to talk about a conversation that I had with wife of the show Laurie a couple days ago, because I was saying like, you know, I'm gonna make Brian's omurice recipe which has ketchup in the topping, which is not pure ketchup in this case, and ketchup in the filling. And I hate ketchup. I fucking hate it. Like if you make me a burger that's like a great burger and put ketchup on it. Like I will try and find a way to like feed it to the dock. Right?

Molly 4:22

Did did you have to buy a bottle of ketchup for this? I mean, like, did you not have ketchup?

Matthew Amster-Burton 4:26

There was ketchup in my fridge because I use it to make homemade barbecue sauce, which of course is very similar to catch up but like different enough that I can fool myself. So what I was saying to Laurie is like, my life would be so much easier if I just liked catch up, right? Because everybody loves ketchup. It's not like I'm saying like, you know, I have to like hit myself on the head twice a day and have to get used to that. Like, you know, this is a thing that literally almost everybody loves like dipping your fries and ketchup like what kind of fucking maniac wouldn't enjoy that

Molly 4:55

right? Well, and I'm realizing we were just saying that we're kids at heart and you're definitely I don't Know what you are, you know, I'm like a kid who doesn't like

Matthew Amster-Burton 5:02

a catch person from another planet at heart. Because I don't like mayo or mustard either. But the thing is, like I realized a few years ago, you know, a very, very popular dessert feeling and like dessert, you know, ingredient in general, Japan is red bean paste. And this, you know, it is made from from a being that is very similar to kidney beans. And it is made into a pace that has very much the texture of smooth refried beans, but it's very sweet. And like many Americans who didn't grow up eating Japanese food very much, I found this very challenging. Like, why do I want sweetened refried beans in my desert? And then I was like, Okay, wait a minute. Everybody I know in Japan loves this stuff. Like, this is my problem, not theirs. I need to like make a point of like eating this once a day and see what for a week and see what happens. And I did and by the end of the week, I was like, Oh, this is pretty good. Like, it's still not my most favorite. But if I'm going to the pancake place at Nakano station, like, I'm going to get the red bean because that that's the classic one and it's great. Fantastic. So could I do this with ketchup also,

Molly 6:08

and are we going to find out now or do we have to know I haven't tried it

Matthew Amster-Burton 6:11

yet? Like I Okay, spoiler alert. I did I did love Brian's omurice recipe recipe. However, I have not done the ketchup challenge yet.

Molly 6:18

Okay. Oh, god, is this gonna be like the the cinnamon challenge or your your mouth gonna burn off? Or do I need to like get 911? Like, all queued up on my phone?

Matthew Amster-Burton 6:26

Well, I mean, you probably should anyway, just because like I'm probably doing something stupid at any given time. That's gonna land me in the hospital. But yeah, so I want to I want to get some like McDonald's fries and dip them in ketchup. And I want to get like a little Woody's burger with like, everything I like on it plus ketchup. What is your prediction? What do you think is gonna happen?

Molly 6:46

I don't think it's gonna go well, dude. I mean, I I

Matthew Amster-Burton 6:48

really don't know.

Molly 6:50

I love you. platonically we're still I love you. But I just and I know you're capable of great personal growth. But I don't know if you're capable of this kind of person.

Matthew Amster-Burton 7:03

I don't either. It's I'm scared. Yeah, I just don't know what's gonna happen. But like, I by this time, next time we record, I could be a different person. That could be a ketchup person.

Molly 7:15

Okay, let's plan. We'll return to this. Yeah,

Matthew Amster-Burton 7:18

I don't want to forget to mention that. Like, I had a conversation with like several friends in Japan and ask them like, what is your favorite food? And like, two out of three people said, oh, moo dies. Wow. Like this is this is absolutely like, beloved food that people grow up eating. And you know, and it's really good. That's why.

Molly 7:38

Well, I loved seeing your picture of it. Because you would never know there was ketchup involved in the race.

Matthew Amster-Burton 7:45

Yeah, no, that's what appealed to me about Brian's recipe. I knew I had to try it, because because we're having him on the show. But like, I felt like the ketchup was just disguised enough that I could lie to myself, which is my favorite thing to do.

Molly 8:02

We are thrilled to have Brian Washington as our guest today. He is the author of the best selling novel Memorial which is newly out in paperback and the acclaimed story collection lot. He's been a finalist for and or the winner of too many literary awards to name in this short introduction. And you've probably read his work because he's been published by The New York Times The New York Times Magazine, The New Yorker, Buzzfeed, bon appetit, and so many more. I'm especially excited about the fact that memorial is going to be turned into a TV show by the independent studio, a 24. Whose horror movies I have really enjoyed. And I can't wait to watch especially because you're writing the adaptation yourself. Right? Yeah,

Unknown Speaker 8:45

that's that's still happening. Doing it, but it's cool to work with a team like a 24 because they're all aligned in just making like a really cool thing. Instead of like the thing that's gonna like scroll the mouse or like the thing that's going to be easily understood. So as someone who's trying to create something that's like the biggest gift that you have

Molly 9:06

for that is fantastic. Well, welcome to spilled milk. For listeners who haven't yet red Memorial, I wanted to give a quick synopsis because a lot of what we want to talk with you about is the food in the book, but it focuses on a couple in Houston, Texas. So Benson who is a black daycare teacher, and Mike who's a Japanese American chef, and they love each other, but their relationship isn't in a great spot. And things get even more complicated when Mike leaves for Osaka where his father is dying of cancer at the same time that his mother Misko arrives in Houston to visit him. And so Misko and Benson, who'd previously never met wind up stuck together as housemates for an indefinite amount of time. And it's funny and it's profound and it's sad. And for me, it's the kind of queer love story where what I loved is that the characters queer wasn't the most interesting thing about them or their relationship. That was really wonderful. Anyway, but I was also so thrilled to find out how much Memorial is about food and how much it is about cooking. I read an interview with you where you said that when you were writing it, you were interested in the way that food could convey emotion and pleasure, especially in scenes where emotion and pleasure were not immediately apparent between the characters, especially those scenes with Benson and Misko. And I wondered if you could tell us a bit about your own relationship to food and cooking?

Unknown Speaker 10:36

Yeah, I think that it's been a dynamic relationship, you know, and I think that's a relationship that's changed even over the course of the past year. And the way that I think it's changed for like many folks who perhaps like, you haven't had the cook for yourself, you know, maybe you could rely pretty heavily on takeout or like, eating friends for drinks every night or whatever. But that hasn't been the ideal option. As of late. I mean, I think that I started cooking out of necessity, more so than anything else, just as like I've been when I was like a kid. It was quite Yeah, both my parents worked. And they worked long hours. So like, I wanted to eat in the afternoon. And sometimes in the evening, like, I'd have to clock for I'd have to figure out like how to, like, make rice or like sandwiches, like very, very, like simple fare, but I didn't think of it as a way of making income or being like a way of life or like a thing about me until I'm not been had enough opportunities from various editors. And you know, all of a sudden, a few people looked up and said, Oh, like he writes about food, like, I guess, like, I don't really know. But it's, I think, is like a means of writing about the ways that people are able to communicate or not. And I mean, it's, it's it is a universal language in many ways, right, like food and intimacy in many ways, or food, or intimacy, and trying to figure out how to siphon like this relationship between these two young men in the novel, who don't really know what it means to communicate with one another. But both right. Food is the language at their disposal, although, in varying capacities, I just thought it'd be a nice way to include food in a narrative, because I feel like that's like one of the things that you rarely see in contemporary American literary fiction, like nobody really eat, to work, and nobody really had sex, like writing a book where that was like, the only three things that occurred was really funny to me. But also it was it felt, I felt like a nice way to get at that conversation. How can we communicate with one another? Or have somebody want the same thing? So we don't know how to articulate that, or what varying things are the extent to which we want the same thing varies pretty wildly, like, what are different ways we can go about having more difficult conversations? Who seemed like one way to go about doing that? Yeah,

Matthew Amster-Burton 12:55

I'm so glad you said that. Because like, when I was reading Memorial, one of the things I loved about it was like it made me think about how I feel when I'm watching a movie or reading a book, and the characters are about to have sex. And then this cuts away to a new scene of like, I wanted to see that like, you know, I was like, Okay, here we go. And then you took away the most interesting part. And like, the same goes for food. Yeah. And modern literature. Like, I want to see what they're eating what they're cooking, like how they're doing it, and memorial gives me the good stuff.

Unknown Speaker 13:21

I'm so glad. Yeah, you know, you pay, like how much of the hardcover book in the $28. It's like, Are you sure, changing but yeah, trying to trying to write the sort of narrative. And I thought that I would enjoy reading that my friends would take pleasure from usually my like, yeah, primary goal and, you know, things that we and I gravitate toward.

Matthew Amster-Burton 13:44

So you're from Houston, and Houston shows up a lot in your work. But Japan does, too. And I read that you spent a summer in Osaka while working on this book, which sounds really, really hot, but also great. How did you originally strike up a relationship with Japan and aside from omurice that we're going to get to in a minute, what do you expect, especially look forward to eating when you go to Japan?

Unknown Speaker 14:04

It started since we've done a pandemic time, it's hard to say I think it's like six years. Yeah, I know. Like yesterday was four years, I think, for the first time about six years ago now. And I would just go to visit friends it wasn't with you know, the intention of reading about the experience or you know, or monetizing it in any sort of way. But I was teaching ESL in Houston at the time, and if you're teaching us on Houston, you get a chance to have summers off and if you're flying out of Busch International and you don't mind leaving at like 2am you can get like a pretty cheap flight that's going to be like 36 hours like they play over and I didn't mind during the time you know, because that meant I could spend like a few months like with my friends and also in Tokyo to some extent but I found that this I really, really enjoyed the city. I really enjoyed the ambience and reminds me of Have you send in a lot of ways, and just that the populace, it's just really they act and really humorous and really self aware simultaneously but not in like a detrimental way, you know, it was a really nice time. And it became interesting to me trying to figure out what those connections were between Osaka and Houston and live all the way that I did when I was in that particular city. And it's something that's still really interesting. To me, I think that the biggest shock for me food wise, or cuisine was over there. From my first strip's onwards, everything was just really delicious. And everything was not delicious, but deeply fresh, like, completely ingredient level, everything was just so high quality. And so I just really like like an egg with like an egg. And stuffing a couple of eggs and rice, you know, it was just deeply delicious. So coming into contact with

Matthew Amster-Burton 16:00

like, that's like orangey red yolks into Yeah, think about all the time yeah, just

Unknown Speaker 16:04

coming into contact with flavors that I've been aware of that I hadn't experienced that in the pronounced way that I experienced them. And, like I was like really paradigm shifting for me and my understanding of like, what goes into a dish and how to construct a dish that has like a lot of value both at the ingredient level, but also like a whole. And one of the dishes, I really did that. For me, it was like Okonomiyaki it was the you know, the first time I had it was in the premier street vendor and the way that most folks, you know, they discovered their home or you know, street vendor sells. And it was just like a revelation for me because I hadn't had a cabbage pancake pancake before as someone who like has had quite a lot of tech, like in my life. Before them, you know, prior to visiting Osaka, it was like, is so full of flavor and so many different kinds of flavors between salty and sweet. You know, having a mommy and like all these, like, from bites. And like that was just really, it was really important to me, you know? And then sometimes it can sound a little strange to me even to be like, oh, yeah, but this one bias is like really, like, deeply a shift for me there. But but it was true. And you know, it's something that I think about quite often. Yeah.

Molly 17:19

I love that. So something that Matthew and I were both talking about is how in Memorial, when Mike goes to Japan to be with his dying father, he starts working in his dad's bar. And it feels like a very real place. You know, Matthew and I were like, did Brian work in a bar in Japan? Like, what kind of research did you do in order to capture the scene at issues is a kayak? Yeah,

Unknown Speaker 17:46

so I work. My first jobs were food service. So I have some experience working in food service. But as far as like the the guy that specifically like to spending a lot of time in bars, and also lots of different kinds of bars, and seeing the ways in which the clientele to oppose like management relationship is just so varied from what we might typically experienced in the States, right. And, you know, many of the bars are smaller and more intimate, and more familial, right, and many so many friendships develop from bars and friendships that oftentimes might be exclusive to like the bar as a space itself. Like, that's the one place that you see, many of these people are many of the same people that they become like a major part of your life, right? They become like a pivotal part of like your day to day experience, not only in the city, but also like how you perceive yourself and how you perceive those around you. And then the bartender becomes like a really like a family figure, in many ways. So it's experiencing that felt like another opportunity to really serve her out circle around this question of like, what constitutes a family? Yeah, are like one of the many forms that like a family can take, like, what happens when, like the ties that you have, to the folks that you meet? Like, and he's like, are, you know, firmer or feel firmer than those like blood kin? And what it wouldn't be expectation at that point, and what happens when, you know, there's need on either side of that expectation, right, like who can what, what happens when the folks that you find yourself relying on are, you know, to strangers and other folks might look circumstantial, like, Oh, these are just people you see in the bar, they're really like, you know, they are a family and they are a family of sorts. That felt like something that was going to be interesting to read to me and largely just because I was I have been trying to figure out what that means to me. Specifically,

Molly 19:47

Matthew and I have gone to Tokyo a couple of times together and there's a particular bar that we really love in Nakano that we first went to together, and yeah, I aspire to someday spend And enough time there to, to have that that feeling because it was so interesting when I was reading those scenes in Memorial, like all good literature should it enabled me to, to live inside it and, you know, take my own experience from this bar in Tokyo and put it into the story. Thank you for that. Yeah,

Unknown Speaker 20:19

thank y'all.

Matthew Amster-Burton 20:20

Alright, so let's talk about Omar dice a little. So you wrote a piece for The New Yorker that Molly and I both read and enjoyed very much called the Japanese fried rice omelette that rewired my brain. Tell us about the first time you had omurice.

Unknown Speaker 20:32

There's a restaurant who's named that I can't remember off the top of my head, but it was it was like a sort of chance encounter that I had with this particular restaurant, like it was in by a train station and are on one of the local lines. And I just wanted something to eat. Like, I think I think I've gotten like lost on that particular they're wanting to go somewhere else to eat something else. And I got no pain and I just been you know, I just been stuck in loss. Okay, like, I would like to eat something at this point. And I wasn't really feeling like Colombini food, although that would have been like equally delicious cake coming from the community. So I wonder and you know, to this restaurant in as almost like a sort of, like, Western style or like Western facing restaurant. You know, I sit down I'm like one of the few people there and like this, I had no conception of like, what on ice was like, specifically, but the guy behind the counter, like he just started like walking through it. It's like in my very bad Japanese and like his very fluent English. And we decided on like, a dish that it was like the fourth thing that I had on the menu. And it was between like a tomato, it was like, it was a demi glaze sauce. And it was also like a sort of like red tomato face sauce with like, a really heavy Parmesan filling inside of like the sort of eggs good mixture, and which I now know, but I didn't know at the time. So I was just like, yeah, and he was like, it's gonna be awesome. And I was like, okay, like I trust. And it was, again, one of those like, it's like, oh, man, like, this is, like wild. It was it was really delicious. Largely, I think, because it was so unexpected. For me, again, like seeing these ingredients that were front facing is like familiar for me, front facing ones that I already had a relationship with, but cooked in such a way. And with such attentiveness that it really, you know, just like, blew me away, like really, like taught me something, you know, and I think the best it's like a really rare experience for me, at least right like to have like an I mean, I suppose with any relationship between like somebody and the thing that you're eating is like deeply intimate, it is someone to care with. And now it's becoming a part of you and as a part of your life, but to experience that in like a time and in a place where like I wasn't expecting to have that experience was it was just really shocking, almost like I went back like quite often. After that. I'm quite looking forward to going back again.

Molly 23:16

So in your New Yorker piece about omurice you you there's a recipe that accompanies it. Do you make omurice a lot at home and do you usually use this this formula that was in the New Yorker?

Unknown Speaker 23:28

I make this pretty often I mean I think that there was I live in Houston and Houston is where I was for the Bronx of last year in Houston specifically I think that most of the city the pandemic seriously for about like eight days the city in the midst of the pandemic always has to say that it's like I didn't I didn't I wasn't eating out last year and even you know takeout I was mostly pretty wary of so so I cooked a lot and it was like one of the things that I was cooking like twice a week or so particularly because that was around the time I was in I was on the back end of edit for Memorial and gearing up toward publications and I was already working like a lot in addition to like my net recipe is pretty pretty much the foundation of what I tend to err toward with you know my own personal cooking I mean I'm someone who I follow recipes is like a baseline or as a foundation but the more that I cook this I think it just becomes more for me at least about time personal timing, personal preference, you know the recipe changes depending on who I'm cooking for like if it's just myself that like I'm gonna do whatever I'm gonna do and like if I mess up like I saw like the egg is too ready I'm just kind of like okay like whatever but like if I begin with someone else you know we I have like their preferences in mind and their tolerance in mind but like as a base. That recipe is like served me pretty well.

Matthew Amster-Burton 24:59

There are some ways you can Find yourself mixing it up either based on like what you're hungry for what you have in the fridge.

Unknown Speaker 25:04

The other dish that I'm cooking like quite a lot for the brunt of last year with kimchi fried rice. So I would cook me to a perfect Yes, this is like a component for like a perfect meal and then I would cook kimchi fried rice or like if I had cooked kimchi fried rice like the day prior like I would know quickly stir fry like kimchi fried rice. And I would cook the almond ice up to a point and just fold the omelet over that kimchi fried rice, that that's something that I would lean toward, I would change BTS fillings and I would use for the old eyes or whatever I was looking at at a given point in time, I would like maybe amp up the heat for like the tomato base. Depending on like, what if I wanted like the same dish, but I just wanted like a variation upon it. I mean this and that. That was also something that like taught me a lot, you know, like working with, you know, these same ingredients and coming to have like a different relationship with them, right or a relationship with them in such a way that I can make slight alterations and come up with an entirely different meal or like you created an entirely different meal for myself. And it's something that I think it's kind of like impact on like when I'm cooking for others now that it's a little bit safer. You know, folks are vaccinated, we can eat one another's homes or what have you the experience of like cooking, for others, having had that experience and making this slight alteration, thinking the same thing over and over and over again for myself. And really pleasurable and like really fruitful.

Molly 26:36

Ah, I love that. Before we let you go, I wondered. I mean, you sound like a very intuitive cook. But are there cookbooks, especially Japanese cookbooks or websites that you go to for, you know, for inspiration or for guidance as you try out new dishes?

Unknown Speaker 26:55

Yeah. So I think that just one cookbook is really important to me. I'm the main runner of the fights Nami like she is God as far as I'm concerned. Like, like, every recipe that I agree, yeah, every recipe that she has, on the website, just like hits, like it works like it's full stop, like, you know, 10 out of 10. I'm like, No, nope, ever. Another cookbook that I've been clicking from quite a lot is everyday Korea. That's a book that I quite love. There's a book called Black foods that was released very recently that I've been cooking out of like very, very, very frequently, the plate and like I've really in 20 to 90, of course, like, you know, quite enjoy

Matthew Amster-Burton 27:39

it. You mentioned black food. We're working on getting Brian on the show soon.

Unknown Speaker 27:42

Amazing. Yeah, yeah. And it's such a, it's such a dynamic cookbook, too, you know, I mean, there's a there's a level of precision for every single recipe, but the recipes and smells like run the gamut as far as like what you're looking to cook like I cooked this, my boyfriend and I like last week, we cooked it's a stew with like a coconut milk base, but to have Apple it had cashew, and it had a squash. And it was just so delicious, that, you know, we added Trump and that we sort of like amped up the fish off and made some other changes for like, our personal preferences, but it was just so delicious. You know, like it was just, it was really, really great. So those are, you know, those are, those have been really important to me lately. And also there's a there's a YouTuber who goes by the moniker of like, one meal a day, and I believe it's like, every week or so, they'll post like a new recipe. And in the myths of the pandemic, I leaned really heavily on the recipes and like the videos are just like really cute. Like, they're really short. I always like under like five minutes like around that sort of like three and a half to like four minute threshold. And it's really only like five ingredients with Max. Usually they'll get away with like three or four ingredients and the meals are just really delightful and and of themselves, you know, so that was that serious, just one that has been really important to me. And what's really important to me, like in the midst of the pandemic. Alright, well,

Matthew Amster-Burton 29:06

you can definitely look to all of the things you mentioned in the show notes. Brian, thank you so much for joining us on spilled milk. This has been such a pleasure.

Unknown Speaker 29:13

Oh, wow. Thank you all so much for having me. I'm such a fan and a lot.

Molly 29:18

Thank you. Thank you.

Matthew Amster-Burton 29:19

So Memorial is now out in paperback Brian before he goes there anything else that you would like to plug of your stuff?

Unknown Speaker 29:25

Yeah, I'm I'm pretty bad about being online, which is the same thing. I'm really not. Yeah, I'm just I've just been busy lately just working on the next book and I'm working on a show and I am on Instagram at dry dot w a s h i n g and my website is Bri washing that easily has like more recent stuff that I've been working on and so they're circling around.

Molly 29:52

Alright, perfect. Well, thank you so much and can't wait to see memorial on the screen. and can't wait to read what you're working on next.

Unknown Speaker 30:03

Oh, wow. Yeah, thank you so much for having me

Molly 30:15

oh my god, he was so delightful. What do you think he was fucking with us that he was a fan?

Matthew Amster-Burton 30:19

I mean, I think that's the kind of thing I would say if I wanted to be nice

Molly 30:25

rain on my parade,

Matthew Amster-Burton 30:26

buddy. Somebody seems so nice that that I believe him. Right let's, let's use. So I'm glad like he talked about kind of like that. omurice is kind of like alchemy that, like when I was making Brian's recipe, I was like, Okay, I kind of know like, what, how this is going to turn out because I know what ketchup tastes like, I know what chicken thighs tastes like. And I made fried rice a million times before and I made a million omelets and it comes together into something that is much more than the sum of its parts.

Molly 30:56

Well, you know, one thing I've been thinking about, you know, with the presence of ketchup in the rice mixture, ketchup as a rice seasoning, is that you know, like what happens when you're cooking with tomato paste, right? Like yeah, there is something that changes about the flavor and the texture and everything if tomato paste when it gets hot. And I imagine that that ketchup does the same thing. I mean, what's in ketchup like sugar tomato, what some vinegar? Yeah, all of those things, if you take them apart are totally natural with rice and wouldn't necessarily yield a flavor that says ketchup.

Matthew Amster-Burton 31:31

And the sauce is great to like the sauce like it's called Demi glass sauce, but it like has nothing whatsoever in common with like French Demi glass sauce because it is a mixture of ketchup, Japanese Worcestershire sauce, tonkatsu sauce and honey. Just like whisk together. That's the sauce. And I was like, I don't know like this is gonna be like just like too sweet or too simple or tasty with too much like ketchup and I'm not gonna like it. No, I loved it.

Molly 31:58

So you mentioned earlier in the episode that omurice is often just served like drizzled with ketchup. Now we know it can also go with this sort of Demi glass sauce Demi glass in quotes. Are there other things that this omelet is often topped with or those the main things so the

Matthew Amster-Burton 32:15

other the other one that I've seen and have eaten at a at a little Japanese cafe called moderately do cafe in in Vancouver is curry. So like the same like a kind of thin Japanese curry sauce is great with omurice. And I'm sure there are others as well because they're they're like restaurants in Japan that specialize in omurice and could either be like the kind of place where like, you know, they just make it one way and you're going to have it their way or they make it 10 ways and you can take your pick. So any sauce that like plausibly could go on there. Someone has tried it for sure.

Molly 32:50

I love the thought of that, that, you know, there's somebody out there maybe who's just trying all the different sauces on omurice, Manny's maple syrup,

Matthew Amster-Burton 32:59

probably. And now it isn't around shichimi togarashi. Of course,

Molly 33:03

that sounds perfect. And I think it probably is screaming for a cold beer.

Matthew Amster-Burton 33:09

Yeah, for sure. I think Brian talks about that in the article. He does. He does

Molly 33:13

so of course we'll link to the article will link to his omurice recipe. Matthew does just one cookbook have an omurice. Okay, great. We'll link to Nami. ZOMO dice then.

Matthew Amster-Burton 33:24

Yeah, okay, we got it. We got a lot of links this week. We're like we're like a sausage factory.

Molly 33:31

All right, Matthew, do we have any spilled mail this week?

Matthew Amster-Burton 33:34

I don't think we do. So hit us up. Contacted spilled milk. podcast.com The last time I asked for spilled mail you really delivered you the listener? I didn't get any from Molly. So you're gonna have to, you're gonna have to pick up the slack.

Molly 33:45

Here. You get so many texts from me. Thank you. Okay, so instead

Matthew Amster-Burton 33:49

of spilled mail, we're gonna we're gonna read a couple of texts, recent texts from Molly Zara. Called texts from Molly. Oh,

Molly 33:57

did I have any funny ones? Um, I think lately we've been talking about your cat.

Matthew Amster-Burton 34:04

Yeah. Very sad. I just did some very Butch things like removing the hose and putting on the insulated spigot cover. It might freeze tonight changing the light bulbs in our outdoor lights and doing some touch up painting in my office.

Molly 34:17

Yeah. Oh, god. That was great. After that, I attempted to our kitchen sink faucet wasn't working. So I ordered a new faucet and I was really I mean, I really I watched a lot of YouTube videos of course how to change like this particular type of faucet and I was so ready to be the bush. I am on the inside. Yeah, not so much on the outside. But anyway, we wound up having to like call our friend Joe because we didn't have a monkey wrench. And now we're going to get a monkey wrench.

Matthew Amster-Burton 34:49

You gotta get a monkey wrench. Can't wait. It was a monkey wrench just like like the kind of curvy head wrench. What's a monkey wrench?

Molly 34:57

So we had some like regular wrenches. Which I'm sure have names other than regular wrench, like anyway, a monkey wrench comes in multiple sizes and it's the bigger, more heavy duty one that you've probably seen, you know, you'd probably see it in something where I don't know somebody's getting beaten over the head with it or something. Okay, so just like that kind of wrench wrench, okay. All our listeners are like, wow, Molly is failing at her efforts to be a butch because that she can't describe a monkey wrench.

Matthew Amster-Burton 35:29

Well, I mean, it worked for me because like now like, you know, I don't do a lot of like home repair, but I do, like do a lot of beatings because, like, I'm a peaky blinder. Oh, yeah. Like I did I tell you I got a new job as a peaky blinder. Oh, really? I've never watched the show. So I'm surprised Murphy. Yeah, so I'm working closely with Kilian on a variety of projects, most of which involve a monkey wrench.

Molly 35:55

Oh, great. Okay, great. Well, Matthew, I have a now but wow, this week. I'm pretty excited about it.

Matthew Amster-Burton 36:01

It's Peaky Blinders.

Molly 36:09

Okay, so this is going to be a little bit hard for people to find in their podcast search function, because it was a little hard for me to find. I first learned about it from my friend Sarah Franklin. It is a podcast put out by the Poetry Foundation. It is the vs podcast, but you will only find it if you search for V s. So like, whoever we can link to it in the show notes. Oh, great. Okay, perfect. So this podcast, I think it's going into its sixth season, I think it's wrapping up its fifth season. By the time this episode comes out, maybe we'll be close to the sixth one. And it's about to have a transition in hosts. But let me tell you what this podcast does, which is so great. So, as you may have guessed from the mention of Poetry Foundation, this is a podcast about poetry. Specifically, it is a series where the two hosts who for the first five years have been Dennis Smith and Frannie Choi. They're about to get a new host or a couple of hosts for the show, Frannie and Danez interview a poet. And I think, Gosh, over the years, they've interviewed almost 100 poets, and they always sort of wind up focusing on like, sort of one idea that moves them. So a recent episode, or not recent at this point, but sort of my gateway episode was the Ross gay episode from late 2020. Around the time that the poet Ross gay came out with his book length poem be holding, he was on the show, and he had like the most fantastic and irreverent conversation with Frannie and Danez. I can't recommend it highly enough. I'm so excited to see who the new hosts will be. Maybe by the time this airs, we will know. Okay. Oh, sorry. But that's the vs podcast from the Poetry Foundation. Check it out. And yeah, try looking for the Ross gay episode from late 2020. It's great.

Matthew Amster-Burton 38:07

Yeah, we will link it up in the show notes. We'll make sure not to accidentally link to a different verses podcast, which is just where two guys talk about Pearl Jam second album every week. But that probably exists. Also.

Molly 38:19

There are so many like when I first heard about it, I yeah, I didn't know to search for vs. I found there are a lot of podcasts that are held versus or versus

Matthew Amster-Burton 38:30

Do we have any colonic quilts? No colonic quilts. But

Molly 38:33

can I tell you guys so much?

Matthew Amster-Burton 38:36

Again, any quilt or comforter or Afghan related news

Molly 38:39

we want we have been recording these podcasts. So what I say like a synchronous we always

Matthew Amster-Burton 38:47

say sounds like I'm recording it like myself, and then you're recording your part at a different time. And if somehow Abby has to knit them together to make it sound like a conversation if we could do that, we I think we would have like we get like a Pulitzer Prize for like dumb podcasting tricks.

Molly 39:03

No, maybe what I mean is like, anachronistically

Matthew Amster-Burton 39:08

we're doing these podcasts. anachronistically yes, we're doing that by candlelight. Using using recording onto wax cylinders.

Molly 39:18

Okay, what I'm trying to say is, we're recording this in like, like the third week of October. This episode is coming out in December. And what I wanted to say is that my my quilting aspirations right now are to quilt a Christmas tree skirt. Okay, I like that. So like ever since I've been a grown up I've you know, whenever I've had a Christmas tree, I've never had a skirt for it. And I remember one year taking like a knit blanket that and living it around the bottom last year we took like a piece of white fabric we found in our like, you know, sewing stash and kind of draped that around the tree stand. Anyway, I've decided I want to make a patchwork of white fabrics. Okay, you know, cut it like a tree skirt. And my goal is to do that between now and December and listener. You're listening to this in early December and I can't wait to find out if

Matthew Amster-Burton 40:12

I've done it or not. Oh, yeah, you listener, you know, something that Molly doesn't, which is whether Maalik successfully created a tree. Not sure if the listener will know, have I ever thought about tree skirts before? I mean, I didn't know they exist, but I don't think I've ever had a conversation with someone about them before.

Molly 40:31

I mean, I just want to be clear that I'm not the kind of person who sits around and like goes, Oh, no, I don't have a tree skirt. How can I go on being a woman in 21st century America? No, it's just more like I kind of wanted a quilting project. And I don't want to do a quilt as everyone may remember. I really only have the stamina for one quilt every four years. Right? Yeah, I mean, like a mini quilt.

Matthew Amster-Burton 40:56

You do you do live your life. anachronistically in a lot.

Molly 41:02

Yeah, yeah. I have been riding a bicycle through this whole episode to power my computer. Mm hmm.

Matthew Amster-Burton 41:07

Yeah, your your whole life is kind of like the magic Treehouse series.

Molly 41:11

Yeah. Oh, man. I thought that was so scary when I had to run from the dinosaurs.

Matthew Amster-Burton 41:19

I remember that episode.

Molly 41:21

Oh, God. I couldn't find the treehouse at first.

Matthew Amster-Burton 41:25

It was weird that you were running from one of like the little dinosaurs that like, like, one foot tall like that. That was kind of silly, but I enjoyed watching

Molly 41:33

it. Yeah. Okay. Well, our producer is Abby, sir. Catella. She's probably not enjoyed listening to this episode at all.

Matthew Amster-Burton 41:41

I mean, I'm sure she enjoyed the part where we interviewed a great author. Yeah, the rest of it. Right and review us wherever you get your podcasts, please.

Molly 41:50

And you can join us at reddit.com/are/everything Spilled Milk and by join us, I mean, join in the conversation about spilled milk. Yeah, fellow spilled milk ease.

Matthew Amster-Burton 42:02

I mean, like, once every once a month for ya know, our fans are called Marty cookies. That's when they want their parents to put on our podcast. Okay, I pop onto the Reddit like maybe once a month and sometimes notice that someone has asked me something and I'll try and answer it. Mm hmm. So that's a little bit anachronistic of me, but I make it work.

Molly 42:33

Okay, well, um, thank you as always for listening to spilled milk. Thank you again, Brian Washington for being on the show. Thanks for listening to spilled milk. The show where

Matthew Amster-Burton 42:43

this show where Molly's gonna knit us an omelet we're gonna get wrapped up in it like a human OMO dice I'm me. And I'm also me so there's

Molly 43:01

this crazy weather pattern that's supposed to happen today. It's called a boom monsoon. And I was

Matthew Amster-Burton 43:09

I was like that's definitely a professional wrestler right