Thursday, March 31, 2011

Orange-garlic chicken wings

Inspired by chef John, these wings were very tasty if eaten in moderation. Too many turn out to be too sweet.

Ingredients
2.5 lb chicken wings
0.5 cup flour
2 tbsp Frank's hot sauce
salt
black pepper
2 tbsp vegetable oil
0.5 cup flour
1/3 cup orange marmalade
2 cloves of minced garlic
1 tsp fresh grated ginger
2 tbsp rice vinegar
2 tbsp Hoisin sauce
0.5 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp Sriracha hot sauce

Preparation
Toss the wings with a little salt, black pepper, hot sauce and oil.

Dredge in 0.5 cup flour in a plastic bag (I used a tortilla bag).

Spray a pan with oil and lay the wings on it. Spray the top with oil as well. Bake in a preheated 400F oven for 30 minutes on one side, then turn and bake for 30 minutes on the other.

Meanwhile, measure out the marmalade, garlic, ginger, soy sauce, rice vinegar, Hoisin sauce and hot sauce into a small pot. Bring to a boil and simmer for 2-3 minutes.

Pour half the sauce onto the chicken wings, toss and add the other half. Allow to cool and serve.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Beef and udon noodles stir-fry

This was a surprisingly tasty treat that I wish to do many variations on in the future.

Ingredients
8.8 oz package dried udon noodles
10 oz chuck beef steak
2 tsp corn starch
1 tbsp mirin
0.25 cup mirin
3 tbsp soy sauce
2 tsp sugar
2 cloves garlic
0.25 tsp ground ginger (or 1 tsp minced, fresh)
0.5 lb broccoli
4 oz white mushrooms
sesame seeds
2 tsp canola oil

Preparation
Toast some sesame seeds in a dry pan, set aside.

Cut the beef for stir frying into 0.25 inch thick strips. Mix with the starch and 1 tbsp mirin. Set aside to marinade.

Mince the garlic and slice the mushrooms. Break the broccoli into florets.

In a small ramekin mix the remaining mirin, sugar and soy sauce. Stir until sugar dissolves.

Cook the udon noodles, rinse with cold water and toss with a little bit of oil to prevent them from sticking together.

Heat your pan on nearly max heat. When hot add the oil, garlic and meat. Allow to brown and cook to medium done. Remove from pan.

To the pan add the mushrooms and cook for 2-3 minutes, then add the broccoli and ginger as well. Cook for 1-2 more minutes. Add the noodles and half the mirin, sugar and soy sauce mix. Stir-fry carefully, without breaking the noodles and allow them to soak up the mirin sauce.

Add the other half of the sauce and the beef, cook until the sauce reduces to desired thickness. Serve topped with toasted sesame seeds. Yumm!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Hungarian cherry milkpie

A traditional Hungarian sweet. It's actually not very sweet. Pie is not a very good name for it, as it's kind of a vanilla custard topped with soft cake.

Ingredients
2 eggs
100g flour
60g icing sugar
1 package vanilla sugar
130mL cream
200mL milk
cherries
salt
butter and flour for pan

Preparation
Preheat the oven to 360F. Butter and flour a 9inch pie shape. Set half a can of cherries to drain.

Brear the eggs into a bowl and start whisking them with a hand mixer. After 1 minute, add a tiny pinch of salt and half of the icing sugar.

Mix on high for 4 minutes. Then add the other half of the sugar with the vanilla and blend for 4 more minutes, until foamy.

Mix in the cream and milk on low.

Then fold in the flour in small portions with a manual whisk, this way you can avoid forming knots.

Add the cherries to the floured pan, pour the batter on. Place into the oven for 30-40 minutes.

Allow to cool for 5 minutes, serve warm with a dusting of icing sugar. Yumm!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Spagetti carbonara

Pictures to follow later.

Ingredients
0.3 lb bacon
2 tbsp olive oil
2 cloves garlic
30g flour
1 cup cream
1 cup milk
salt
black pepper
cheese
pasta

Preparation
Slice the bacon into 0.25 inch strips. Peel and mince or grate the garlic. Weigh out the flour.

Heat the olive oil in a pan. Add the bacon and dust with black pepper. Cook for two minutes in the hot oil, stirring frequently. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds. Add the flour and stir. Cook for 30 more seconds.

Remove from the heat and whisk in the cold milk and cream quickly. Return to heat and bring to a boil. Simmer until it thickens to the desired thickness. Salt to taste.

Serve with spagetti and grated parmesan.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Chicken and mushrooms

Simple and amazing. And in case you read my previous post: no, I did not get to eat these sadly. I tried them, but didn't get to eat them. So sad. Being sick sucks.

Ingredients
4 chicken thighs
8 oz white button mushrooms
1-2 tbsp olive oil
salt
black pepper
2 tsp balsamic vinegar
2 tsp sugar
0.25 cup water
1 tsp butter

Preparation
Liberally salt and black pepper the chicken thighs. Dry the skin.

Heat a cast iron skillet to medium-high (never place onto preheated heater, and never heat on high!!!). Add the oil.

Place the chicken thighs, skin-side down into the hot oil and allow to brown for 5-7 minutes, without moving them.

Meanwhile, slice the mushrooms into thick slices. When the chicken is ready, remove onto a plate and add the mushrooms to the skillet. Increase the heat to nearly high. Cook the mushrooms, stirring occasionally for about 5 minutes.

Add back the chicken pieces on top, with the skinless side down. Pour in any juice that might have collected on the plate. Move skillet into 400F preheated oven for 30 minutes. Check a chicken piece to make sure juices run clear and it's cooked through to the bone. Remove from skillet.

Replace skillet onto the stove and start heating on medium-high again. (It should still be very hot from the oven.) Mix the balsamic vinegar, sugar and water, until all sugar dissolves. Pour into hot skillet to deglaze. Reduce the sauce to the desired thickness (about 2-fold in volume). Add a tsp of butter and pour onto chicken pieces. Serve!

Soft scrambled eggs

I spent the past week in agony from constant heartburn. I never experienced anything alike before. In any case, it sadly reduced me to consuming saltines and other plain foods all week long. While spiceless food can't begin to approach the taste of anything spicy, these scrambled eggs had some redeeming values. They were incredibly soft with a simple yet pleasing flavor.

Ingredients
2 eggs
3 tbsp milk or half-n-half
salt
1 tbsp butter

Preparation
Whip the eggs and add the milk. Blend in the milk well and salt it to taste.

Add the butter to a heavy, non-stick skillet and melt on medium-high. Pour in the egg mixture.

Mix slowly with a silicon spatula every 20-30 seconds. Do not overcook. Serve immediately with good bread.

Hungarian pickled veggies

What makes these Hungarian? I have no idea, but I haven't had the exact same kind of pickles elsewhere. Anyway, these remain crunchy, full of vitamins, and it's super easy to make.

Ingredients
1 green cabbage
1 large cucumber
2 jalapeno peppers
1 yellow onion
100g sugar
40g salt
1 cup 5% white vinegar
0.125 tsp sulfite powder

Preparation
Shred the cabbage, slice the cucumber, peppers and onion.

Dissolve the salt and sugar in the vinegar and toss with the veggies. Sprinkle in the sulfite powder (borken) and toss again. (I didn't use any, as I have no idea where to buy this in the US. The caveat is that you must store your pickles in the fridge and eat it in 1-2 weeks.)

Cover the veggies and let sit at cold room temperature, mixing occasionally. Stuff into a jar and cover with juice. Dispose of the remaining liquid. Store veggies.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Chicken stir-fry a'la Jing

One of my favorites prepared by my roommate.

Ingredients
0.5 lb chicken
1 cucumber
1 Hungarian wax pepper
0.25 cup peanuts
1 green onion
2 tbsp chili bean paste
2 tbsp Chinese cooking wine
1 tbsp starch
0.5 tsp cayenne
0.5 tsp ground ginger
2 tbsp soy sauce
2 cloves garlic
2 chili peppers
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp vinegar
1 tsp starch
1 tbsp water
1 tbsp vegetable oil

Preparation
Slice the scallion into thin slices. Peel the garlic and chop. Chop the peppers. Slice the cucumbers.

Dice the chicken to about 1 inch cubes, marinade with ginger, cayenne, soy sauce, cooking wine and 1 tbsp starch. Cover and place in fridge for 15 minutes.

Mix the vinegar, sugar, starch and water from the end of the list.

Heat a large skillet to hot, add the vegetable oil, garlic, spicy pepper, peanuts and scallion. Cook until fragrant. Add the chicken and cook until medium done and browned on the outside. Add the chili bean paste.

Add the cucumber and Hungarian wax pepper and cook for 3-5 minutes. Pour in the vinegar-sugar mix and more water if necessary. Cook for 1-2 minutes, until it thickened. Serve with rice.

Banana pudding

Simple, quick, banana-flavored goodness. If you leave out the banana, you get a very delicious, fluffy vanilla pudding. You can mix in some semi-sweet chocolate chips, and you have a great chocolate pudding. Have fun experimenting!

Ingredients
0.5 cup sugar
0.25 cup flour
1.34 cup milk
2 egg yolks
2 egg whites
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 banana
2 tbsp white sugar
1 tsp butter
1 ripe banana

Preparation
Mix the flour and 0.5 cup sugar. Add in egg yolks and milk in small portions, whisking the mixture till smooth between additions.

Bring to a boil and cook until thick. Add in vanilla and butter. Whip up egg whites with 2 tbsp sugar until hard and fold into hot mixture. Alternatively, use this to make a meringue for the top. (In this case you will need to bake the product until golden brown on top, 35oF.)

Chop the banana and mix with a little bit of lemon juice, so it preserves its color. Fold into pudding.

Scoop pudding into ramekins (4x6oz) and bake if topped with meringue, or chill immediately and serve cold.

Corned beef and cabbage

For Saint Patrick's day.

Ingredients
3 lb corned beef with spice pack
0.5 lb carrots
4-5 potatoes
3 cups apple juice
1 bay leaf
1 yellow onion
0.5 tsp black pepper
1 cabbage

Preparation
Place the corned beef on the bottom of pot, fatty side down. or spice packet on it.

Cover with quartered potatoes, baby-cut carrots (or large ones cut into chunks), onion and cabbage cut into wedges.

Add spices and the apple juice. Add enough water to cover the beef. Bring to a boil and simmer until potatoes are cooked.

Remove potatoes, continue cooking until cabbage and carrots reach desired softness. Remove them into a bowl.

Cook the beef until tender. This may take 4-6 hours.

Remove from liquid and allow to rest for 15 minutes.

Slice against the grain and serve. If you allow the meat to cool, this can actually be sliced better.

Toros kaposzta (Hungarian pork and sauerkraut)

A typical dish at pig slaughters.

Ingredients
4 pork chops (with dark meat)
2-3 pounds of sauerkraut
1 tbsp paprika
1 tsp black pepper
1 yellow onion
salt
3 tbsp vegetable oil

Preparation
Chop the pork into 0.5 inch pieces. Dice onion.

Fry on vegetable oil with some salt until golden brown.
Squeeze out most of the liquid from the sauerkraut.

Top pork with the kraut, diced onion and the pepper and paprika.

Fry, stirring frequently until browned. Serve with boiled potatoes.

Tartar sauce

I have no idea what proper tartar sauce is made of. My confusion is due to the different definitions of this condiment in Hungary and in the US. So, here is one I like to serve with fried fish.

Ingredients
2 pickled cucumbers
2-3 tbsp mayo
salt
black pepper

Preparation
Dice pickles into small pieces. Mix with mayo and spices to taste. Serve.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Whole wheat baguette

Ingredients
0.25 tsp yeast
1.5 tsp salt
1.5 cup water
2 cup flour
1 cup whole-wheat flour

This turned out tasty and so beautiful.