silversword: (Default)
Why is it that wonton wrappers must be so difficult to find, and a so-called wonton recipe so inadequate?

Still waiting on the 'finished' product. May still taste okay, but they're quite a mess. Oh well.

Hum.

Dec. 23rd, 2010 09:28 am
silversword: (Default)
Well, I -was- going to post a muffin recipe.

Except that the batch I did to double-check and make sure it worked right came out....dubiously. I'm not certain why, either, so I'll need to go over and find out what went wrong before I'm willing to commit to posting it.

Oh well. No muffins for you, I'm afraid.
silversword: (Default)
Well, I was going to have some Singapore fried rice again (mebbe try it without the egg to see what happened) except that the only pepper around was mouldy, we'd run out of garlic and I couldn't find the prawns. Alas, I found this after I'd already washed the rice.
Thus, in the tried and true, time-tested recipe-method of "Making stuff up based on what I found in the kitchen", I bring you this little something I whipped up. For certain values of "bring you", anyway - mostly I record this so I have a referance to go back to another time. :)

Cooking Experiment 101: Jamaican style Samon Fillet
Serves: 1

WHAT YOU'LL NEED
A frying pan
A small saucepan

75-100g rice
700ml chicken/vegetable stock
1 salmon fillet
2 tsp jerk seasoning
worcestershire sauce
1 chilli (ideally scotch bonnet), deseeded
salt & pepper
salad, to serve (tomato, sliced sweet red pepper, lettuce)
1 tbsp vegetable oil

HOW YOU DO IT
1) Wash the rice thoroughly, put it into the saucepan and add the chicken stock and 1 tsp of the jerk seasoning. Stir well, bring to the boil and simmer for ~9 minutes (or whenever the rice is cooked). If it runs low on water, remove from heat, drain any remaining excess and let it steam in it's own heat in a collander for a couple minutes - that should finish it off.
2) Season the salmon with the salt, pepper, worcestershire sauce and remaining jerk seasoning, and sprinkle the scotch bonnet on top.
3) Heat the oil in the pan, set to a low heat, and add the salmon skin-side down. Cook for a minute or so, then flip the salmon and press it down at either end to sear and stick the chilli's to it.
4) Once the top has seared (takes about a minute), carefully tip the salmon onto it's sides to sear those, then flip back skin-side down and gently heat through for about another 4 minutes
5) When the rice is cooked (taste it to test) drain any excess stock/water. Lay the salmon on top, and serve with whatever salad you have to hand.
6) OMNOMNOMNOM


Variations

You can probably leave out the Worcestershire sauce in the likely-if-you're-not-british chance you can't get hold of it, and although you could use any deseeded chilli, I highly recommend scotch bonnet's because they are actually -tasty-, in addition to being spicy.
If you can't find any Jerk seasoning, then Allspice isn't a bad alternative - not quite the same, but quite nice.

Notes

All in all, I think this went reasonably well. Especially since I was just making use of what I had to hand (Case in point, I didn't even have any of the aforementioned salad, but since I usually have it when I do salmon, I still recommend it.)
If I'd had the option, I would've liked to lightly fry half a pepper alongside the salmon, and I might see about some kind've sauce to go with it for version 2, but it does work without. Perhaps something with lime juice. Will have to see, really.
silversword: (Default)
Japanese Katsu Curry
Serves 3-4

WHAT YOU'LL NEED:
A saucepan, with a lid
A large, reasonably deep frying pan

For the Sauce
1 tablespoon groundnut/vegetable oil
1 onion, peeled and chopped
5 whole garlic cloves
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
2 tablespoons plain flour
1 tablespoon medium curry powder
600ml chicken stock
2 teaspoons honey
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 bay leaf
1/2 a teaspoon garam masala

For the Rest
50g flour, seasoned with salt and pepper
1 free-range egg, beaten lightly
100-200g Japanese panko breadcrumbs
3-4 boneless chicken breasts
100ml groundnut/vegetable oil
rice, to serve



HOW YOU DO IT:

The Sauce
1) Heat the oil, and sauté the onion and garlic for 2 minutes
2) Turn the heat down, add the carrots, put a lid on, and sweat for 10 minutes, giving the occassional stir.
3) Stir in the flour and curry powder for a minute
4) Slowly add the stock (so as to avoid making the flour go lumpy) until combined
5) Add the honey, soy sauce and bay leaf, and bring to the boil
6) Reduce heat, simmer gently for 20 minutes
7) Add the garam masala, stir well. You could also strain the sauce at this point, if you're boring and have something against vegetable chunks. :p

The Rest

1) Cut the chicken into strips, dip in the flour, then the egg, and then the breadcrumbs, making sure to coat evenly. (Alternatively, you could coat the chicken while whole and cut it into strips after cooking, but this means it's harder to judge when the chicken is cooked without burning the outside - Experimentation so far vouches cutting the meat first)
2) Heat the oil in a frying pan, and then fry the chicken for approx 5 minutes per side.
3) Remove chicken from pan with a slotted spoon, put onto kitchen paper to absorb excess oil.
4) Serve the chicken with the rice, drizzled in the curry sauce.
5) OMNOMNOMNOMNOM


Variations

Pork works as a very good alternative to chicken - in fact, given what I know of Japanese curry, pork and beef are far more popular in curry than chicken. Skipping the entire breadcrumbing procedure is also plausible, particularly if you try beef (because breaded beef? srsly?).

Alternatively alternatively, ignore the meat entirely, and chop and add a few potatoes in with the carrots. Which is what I've just done. (And will provide a picture of, as soon as I can find where the blasted cable has gone).

NOTES:

Japanese curry is awesome. It's quite mild, as curries go, but it brings good flavour in the absence of mass spice so I'm willing to ignore that. There is, after all, more to curry than it being spicy ;)
Alas, this recipe doesn't scale very well - the ingrediants don't co-operate so well in differant balances and I've not worked out a way to do an individual portion size version.

On the up-side, curry is often considered better after it's been cooled and reheated, so having an extra helping of sauce to reheat a day or so later works out pretty well.


On a related note, while this is the best recipe I've found to date that doesn't just say "go buy japanese curry blocks", I'm still looking for others to compare, so if you spot another one I can try out, lemme know. :)
silversword: (Default)
Singapore style Chinese Stir-Fry
Serves: 2

WHAT YOU'LL NEED:
1 Wok (or large frying pan)
1 Saucepan

1 Medium sized Pepper (Red, green, whatever), thinly sliced
3-4 Medium sized mushrooms, sliced
1 Clove Garlic, finely chopped
1 tsp crushed chilli's / chilli flakes
1 medium Egg
1 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp chilli powder
1 tsp curry powder
1/4 cup frozen peas
Soy sauce
1 spring onion, chopped
150g white rice, washed
200g pre-cooked prawns
3 tbsp stir-fry oil (regular vegetable oil will suffice if you don't have infused stir-fry oil)



HOW YOU DO IT:

1) Cook the rice, according to packet instructions, then drain and set aside.
2) Heat the oil in the wok, then crack the egg into it and mix well for approx 1minute, until the egg is cooked.
3) Add the chilli and garlic, stir well, cook for between 30 seconds and 1 minute
4) Add the rice, stir well, cook for between 30 seconds and 1 minute
5) Add the pepper and mushroom, stir well, cook for between 30 seconds and 1 minute
6) Add the salt and suger, stir well, cook for between 30 seconds and 1 minute
7) Add the prawns, stir well, cook for between 30 seconds and 1 minute
8) Add the peas, stir well, cook for between 30 seconds and 1 minute
9) Add the chilli powder, stir well, cook 30 seconds
10) Add the curry powder, stir well, cook 30 seconds
11) Add the soy sauce (as much as you feel appropriate - I never measure tbh, I just splash some in), stir well, cook for between 30 seconds and 1 minute
12) Add the spring onion, stir well, cook for between 30 seconds and 1 minute
13) OMNOMNOMNOM

VARIATIONS:

The prawns can be easily substitued for any other meat, or indeed no meat at all, depending on your whim. I tend to prawns, personally, but I've tried it with chicken and hoi-sin coated pork too. Just make sure you cook alternative meats thoroughly first - best way is to stir fry them in the wok while the rice is pre-cooking and then drain them into another dish until needed.
You can also substitute the rice for medium egg noodles, though as a general warning, noodles are both much more annoying to stir (I recommend having cooking chopsticks if you're going to try) and liable to need extra oil to keep them from sticking to the pan. On the plus side, they cook faster than rice (or if you get the right ones, don't even need precooking at all), so it makes the whole thing much faster - good if you're pressed for time.

The recipe scales pretty well for differant numbers of people, but if you try and get past 3 or 4 you're going to need a very big wok to keep it from going everywhere. :)


NOTES:

Surprisingly simple, isn't it? I learned this from my brother, who learned it from the bowels of the interwebs, no doubt. we generally leave out the spring onion, since we don't usually have any to hand, but the original recipe called for it so I list it anyway. Really, the important thing is just to remember the order - everything else is simple.
silversword: (Default)
And now, for something completely differant.

Long story short, Once upon a time (as in, when I was maybe 10), I thought "it would be neat if I knew how to cook my own food". It has proved to be a very valuable decision that has served me very well over the years - much moreso than just knowing how to make my own cake, which I'm pretty sure is what I wanted it for at the time. :p

Since this place is a creative outlet for me, and so much of my other creative ends languish in draft form here and there, I figure I may as well impart various tidbits of cooking knowledge that I have aquired. Cooking is creative, after all. ;)

Of course, by tidbits of cooking knowledge, what I mostly mean is "this is what I had to eat today, and since it was delicious I think you ought to go make it too".
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