Friday, November 30, 2007

Sticky Rice Stuffing

I also brought this side dish to Bunco last night. I love all the flavors in this. I made this for my visit teachee lunch too... but I don't think they are as into Asian flavor as my bunco group is. I love the flavors of ginger, shitake... and well I'm Asian... so I naturally lean towards the unique flavors on my tongue. (but I will not eat cow's tongue...there's something weird for me about tasting something as it's tasting me)

Sticky Rice Stuffing

3 cups Chicken Stock
2 Tbsp sesame oil
2 cups short grain rice (I used my jasmine rice since I didn't have the short grain)
1/2 lb ground pork
2 stalks celery, chopped
2 medium carrots, peeled and chopped
2 baby bok choy, coursely chopped (separate bottoms from green leafy tops)
1 (8-oz) can sliced water chestnuts, drained and coursely chopped
1 (3.2-oz) package shitake mushrooms, chopped
1/3 cup each: soy sauces and dry sherry
3 Tbsp. each minched fresh ginger and chili garlic sauce (I only put 1 Tbsp because I never know if people can't stand the heat)
2 green onions, sliced

Bring stock and sesame oil to a boil in a med saucepan; add rice and bring back to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, for 20 min.

While rice is cooking, cook pork in a large skillet until just a little pink remains.

Add celery, carrots and white bok choy bottoms; cook for 10 min, stirring occassionally.

Add vegetable mixture, cooked rice and remaining ingredients to a large bowl and stir well.

Transfer to a 13x9 inch baking dish; cover and refrigerate if not serving immediately.

Reheat, covered, in teh microwave on HIGH for 5-10 min or until very hot. Makes 10-12 servings.

From Raley's Something Extra

Spicy Crab Cups

I'm so lucky to get to hang out with ladies that are fun, intelligent and fantastic chefs/bakers. Whenever we get together for Bunco it is always a feast of sweet and savories. It's like a chance to taste some of the best flavors in one night.

This is the appetizer I brought last night.

Spicy Crab Cups

1 6oz container Dungeness crab meat
3 oz softened cream cheese
1/4 cup chopped pickled jalapeno slices
2Tbsp minced red bell pepper
30 Athens Mini Filo Shells (two 2.1-oz. boxes, in the freezer section)

Stir crab, softened cream cheese, jalapenoes, and red bell pepper in a medium bowl.

Spoon equal amounts into the mini filo shells. Bake at 350 for about 12-15 minutes or until filling is hot. Makes 30 appetizers.

Note: Cut back on the jalapenos a bit if you are sensitive to the heat.

Recipe from Raley's Something Extra

Friday, November 09, 2007

Spinach and Yogurt Soup - soupfest part 1

Holy CRAP! This was good soup, and extremely easy. Even Edamame liked the soup...until he started tasting the spicy in it.

1 1/2 tablespoons butter or margarine
1 medium onion, finely chopped
2 teaspoons all-purpose flour
1/3 teaspoon salt
1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
1 pinch cayenne pepper(we used red pepper flakes...the spicy kind!)
6-10 bunches fresh spinach, washed and chopped including stems or 1 (16 ounce) package frozen chopped spinach, thawed
2 cups chicken broth
3/4 cup plain yogurt

1. Fry up the onions in the butter until clear then add the flour, salt, nutmeg and spicy spice of your choice.
2. Once you can smell the nutmeg add the spinach and broth. Let it all simmer for about 15 min.
3. In batches take to the blender and blend( I used the hand held blender, and it was awesome, but be careful).
4. Once everything is blended add the yogurt and heat until desired eating temperature...DO NOT BOIL.
5. Garnish with lemon if you choose(we didn't take this road).

Tonjiru - soupfest part 2

I fell in love with this soup two winters ago when I ate it at one of the schools I was working at. I was smack dab in the middle of having morning sickness, but for some reason this warm winter soup was something I could down without fear of any retribution from my stomach. It is GREAT, but depending on your location within the US you may or may not be able to get some of the ingredients.

Serves about 4 people

4 cups water
2 tsp. dashi(Japanese kelp/fish bullion) or follow the directions on the need it to make 4 cups(see above water) of broth
1/2-3/4 lb sliced uncooked pork.
1-2 carrots sliced and then quarter the larger slices
10 cm(5 inches....remember your high school science people) of Japanese diakon radish, sliced and then quartered
15 cm burdock root cleaned, sliced and soaked for a few minutes( it turns the water black so you soak it separate first)...this is COMPLETELY option, and totally tasty without this. If you go for super authentic though, you need it.
1 bunching onion(REALLY big green onion...use regular green onions in a pinch) sliced in 1/4 slices
1 pack of firm tofu, cut up into cubes
3-4 small taro root potatos, peeled and cut into cubes
1 regular potato, peeled and cut into small cubes
1 bunch of Bunashimeji mushrooms(small and brown....sliced shiitake also taste good if you want).
3 Tbs. miso paste

1. Turn the stove on and heat up the water with the dashi stock. As you cut up the veggies throw them in and begin to cook them.
2. Add the pork and finally the tofu. Once everything is almost cooked, add the miso by dissolving the paste in a ladelful of soup. If you find you want a strong miso taste, feel free to add more.
3. Let simmer/very low boil until the veggies and meat are completely cooked
4. Serve!

Some hints: If you can find miso with dashi already in it, WOW does that make your life easier, but I have no idea what gets imported over there. I've added links to pictures, so you know what you are looking for. It is a lot easier than it may seem at first glance.