Archive for September, 2013

September 27, 2013

Mexican Fried Rice

Mexican Fried Rice

This is a meal of left overs. Feel free to adjust portions/ingredients as you see fit. Can’t mess up fried rice!

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 cups left over rice
  • 4 eggs, lightly beaten
  • few tbs chopped green onion (I keep them pre-chopped, in the freezer)
  • left over salsa (I used pineapple mango salsa)
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp chili powder (not chili peppers, but a tex-mex blend with cumin, like Mexene)
  • garlic salt
  • 1/2 cup Mexican shredded cheese blend

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Heat large frying pan on medium high. Add a tbs of oil, heat until shimmering.
  2. Add cold left over rice to hot pan. Smoosh down with flat side of spatula to break down rice. Add chili powder and paprika. Stir and mix until rice becomes soft, ~3 minutes.
  3. Add shredded cheese to lightly beaten egg. Spoon a little hole in the rice and pour egg directly onto hot pan. Once bottom of egg begins to cook, stir lightly and begin mixing in rice. Salt with garlic salt to taste.
  4. Add green onion. Stir and mix until egg cooked through. Turn off heat.
  5. Mix in salsa. Serve.

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September 11, 2013

Chinese BBQ Spare Ribs + how to mince garlic

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I had left over spare ribs from my stew and basically tweaked the recipe for Chinese Chicken Wings

INGREDIENTS

  • spare ribs, cut in 2 or so inch pieces
  • equal parts honey, hoisen (NOT oyster) sauce, soy sauce, rice wine.
  • ginger, garlic, green onion
    • Classic Chinese recipe trio.
    • cut in thin but large slices so that it’s easy to remove from the marinade later. Less burning when you bake.
    • I also like so smash the slices with the flat side of my knife before I add it to the marinade, releases more juices.
  • Chinese Five Spice. ~1 tsp is fine. don’t over-do this. Just sprinkle over the ribs before you add it to the marinade.

It’s hard to mess up the ratio. as long as you keep equal parts of the liquid ingredients, you’ll be ok.

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Marinate ribs in a large ziplock bag over night.
  2. Preheat oven ~310F.
  3. Space ribs evenly on foil lined pan, pour 1/2 cup marinade into the pan, tent over with aluminum foil (**this part’s different from the chicken recipe!).
    • Pork takes longer to cook. Lower heat, longer time, and tenting the foil keeps the meat nice and moist and prevents burning. Results in a more tender rib.
  4. Bake for 1 hour. Open the tent and flip the ribs 180 degrees, add a bit more marinade
    • pan bottom should be bubbly and brown, not black and charred. When you flip, the side of the ribs that were in contact with the foil should be shiny and have a bit of a golden crust.
  5. Re-tent and bake for 30min-1 hour more, depending on thickness of the ribs. Check on it on the 30 min mark, and if it’s not shiny and brown with a nice crust, it’s not done. If it’s greyish, it’s not done. If the meat doens’t come easily off the bone with a fork, it’s not done. Pan bottom by now should start to blacken. That is A-OK.
  6. eat.

MMM… nice end of summer snack. (yes. i eat bbq ribs as a snack.)

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EAT.

See the little black bits clinging to the meat? Doesn’t taste bad. Just looks bad. That’s green onion, diced. I know, I know, I said use long slices for the marinade. But I get my green onion in bulk in Flushing where it’s like 3 bunches for a $1 as opposed to 1 for a dollar. I chop ’em up then freeze them in ziplock bags. So if you want to be cheap, use frozen diced green onion. If you’re going for presentation, use fresh sliced green onion.

Ginger powder works fine if you don’t have fresh.

Never skimp on garlic. Canned stuff is foul. I don’t even do pre-peeled bulk garlic. Just break off a clove, smash with the back of your knife, and the skin comes right off. Chop off the hard nubby end and slice, OR, if you want minced garlic, I use my onion method (I think I learned this from Alton Brown):

HOW TO MINCE GARLIC – LESS MESS, LESS TOOLS.

  • break off 1 clove.
  • do NOT cut off nubby end.
  • Smash lightly a few times with flat side of knife, peel.
  • Lay clove on its flattest side.
  • slice parallel to the cutting board, then perpendicular along the LENGTH of the clove, all the while stopping at the nub. You should end up with long slivers, all still attached to the nub. Like a brush.
  • Slice perpendicular to the board, this time starting at the tip, along the wiDTH of the clove. this creates the mince.

Voila! less sticky fingers, less useless tools in the kitchen that only perform one duty. I will draw you pictures some day. SOME day…

 

EDIT: found an awesome video on chopping onions. The “traditional way” is how I mince my garlic. I think the new way looks intriguing, but not sure how I can manage that with a tiny garlic clove…

September 6, 2013

Pork Rib Noodle Soup

Pork Rib Noodle Soup

Holy crap! Was it really in the 50’s last night? Is it really only September and already noodle soup weather?

Yea, I’m not in Texas anymore.

Left over pork stew works wonders on a day like this.

Note: did not parboil ribs this time. Rubbed them with salt and brown sugar and seared them in the pot. Remove. Add aromatics, deglaze, add soup, add ribs, then simmered on the stove for 4 hours. Similar outcomes, different method of getting there. I did have to skim a ton of “meat particulate” throughout the simmering process though.

Mmmm…meat particulate…

September 4, 2013

Indonesian Chicken and Egg Curry Noodles

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This is a large meal for two. Inspired by the best meal I had in Bali this summer, at a little run down restaurant overlooking a volcano (Mount Batur). My mother actually use to make something similar when we were kids. (Sans curry ’cause we’re not southeast asian). It was a smooshy chicken noodle soup with lots of greens and fluffy eggs melted in. Any time one of us was feeling sick, she’d make us this soup. Perhaps my strong affinity towards this Indonesian dish is just due to homesickness. Anyway, don’t tell my mother, but I like it better with curry and shallots. Just a stronger, richer tasting meal.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 qt Chicken Stock
  • ~3 servings of noodles (I used dried, flat wavy noodles. plain dried ramen noodles are good, too)
  • chicken thigh meat, diced (yes. dark meat. do it.)
  • lime
  • fried shallots (comes in a plastic container w/ red lid. asian supermarkets)
  • ~3 tbs yellow curry paste (thai. ’cause that’s what i have.)
  • 1/2 medium onion, sliced
  • spinach (frozen OK, other asian greens, OK.)
  • 3 eggs
  • salt
  • optional: sliced green onions  and peppers as garnish

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Rub diced chicken meat with curry paste. Salt generously. Mix with your hands. It’s slimy. It’s fun. Please wash your hands.
  2. 4 qt pot – Heat on medium high. Add a tbs oil. When shimmering, add onions. Stir. Saute until soft ~5 min. Salt generously. Add 1 tbs curry paste and mix in.
  3. Add chicken stock. Bring to a  boil. Stir in another spoonful of curry paste or to taste. Add chicken, reduce heat to simmer. Cover and simmer 10 min.
  4. Bring heat up to medium high. When bubbling, add noodles directly into pot. If you are uncomfortable judging cooking times, you can boil a separate pot of water and cook noodles there. Skip to step 5 and ladle finished soup over it after wards.
  5. Once noodles are almost done but still white on the inside and slightly too hard for al dente, add handfuls of spinach (to your heart’s content). I used 1 handful of frozen spinach. It will expand as it cooks.
  6. Bring soup to a low simmer, no rolling bubbles. Lightly beat 3 eggs (whites and yolk still slightly separated), drizzle into soup. Like all over. Don’t just dump it into the center. Cover. 3 minutes or until eggs solidify (OK if still a bit runny. will continue to cook)
  7. Spoon into serving bowls. Squeeze in a bit of lime and toss in spoonful of fried shallots.

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Note: obviously not a picture of my recipe, seeing as there is a volcano in the background. These pics are from my vacation. I unfortunately ate all the noodles I made before I thought to take pictures. Next time!

September 4, 2013

Breakfast.

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Moving to LIC means more time in the mornings for real breakfast. Stole this idea from Inspired by the $3 yogurt cups I was getting at the Pret A Manger by work. Look what my shitty salary has encouraged me to create!

plain greek yogurt + mangos + raw almonds + honey + crumbled dark brown sugar

I love brown sugar. I get mine at the Chinese supermarket. Crumbly. Grainy. Like wet sand. Not to be confused with turbinado, or “raw sugar”. That stuff just doesn’t melt into your food like this does. I also rub this REAL dark brown sugar over pork spare ribs before browning them for stew. Caramelization is your friend. I think I’ll make some stew this week…

I am so getting off topic.