Friday, January 22, 2016

Cranberry sauce with red wine

My favorite components of the Thanksgiving meal are stuffing and cranberry sauce. Really, I could just pair those two and replace all other components with the combo. This amazing cranberry sauce reminds me of the flavors of Hungarian mulled red wine. The comforting flavors of a cold winter's eve spent by the fire.

0.75 cup red wine
0.5 cup sugar
1 cinnamon stick
12 oz fresh cranberries
zest of an orange

Combine the cranberries and the sugar in a small pot. Add in the wine and the cinnamon stick.

Bring to a boil and simmer over medium heat until cranberries are soft and the sauce is near its desired thickness. Stir in the orange zest and cook for another minute. Serve!

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Cranberry ginger cake

A moist, spicy, delicious cake, with tart cranberries to counterpoint the cake. Not the easiest cake to put together, but really not challenging either. It does have very many steps.

2 cups fresh cranberries
50 g sugar
1 stick butter
1/3 cup brown sugar
0.5 cup milk
1/3 cup maple syrup
0.25 cup molasses
1.5 cup flour
1 tbsp ground ginger
0.5 tsp ground cinnamon
0.5 tsp baking powder
0.5 tsp salt
0.25 tsp baking soda
2 large eggs
1 tbsp fresh ginger

Preheat oven to 350F. Line a 9-inch round baking pan with parchment paper.

In a pot, stir together cranberries, white sugar and 1 tbsp water. Stir over medium heat until sugar dissolves and about half of the cranberries break up and the mixture becomes syrupy.

In a different pot heat the butter, brown sugar, milk, maple syrup and molasses. Bring to just barely a simmer and remove from heat.

In a bowl sift together the flour, ginger, cinnamon, baking powder, salt, and baking soda.

Pour in the melted butter mixture and then beat in the eggs. Stir in the freshly grated ginger.

Pour batter into the cakepan, and top with dollops of the cranberry sauce. Bake until center cooks, about 50 minutes. Cool on a wire rack. Eat warm.

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Cinnamon apples

What to do with oldish apples that have wrinkly, chewy skins but such a delicious sweetness under the undesirable exterior. Well, one could prepare compote for instance. But, without sufficient free time, and when craving a fresh apple dish, this little healthy dessert is a perfect destiny for the poor little old apples.

4-6 apples

Peel and grate the apples on the larger grater holes. Sprinkle with cinnamon. No sugar is necessary.

Peel the pomegranate in a bowl of water to ease the removal of the white pith. Sprinkle seeds on top of the apple. Serve immediately, or else it will brown.

Spicy meatball sandwich

An alternative to the usual Italian-style meatball subs. This one delivers a kick of flavor and the comforts of pan-fired meatballs.

1 lb ground turkey
2 tbsp cilantro leaves
1 scallion
3 cloves garlic
1 tbsp fish sauce
1 tbsp sriracha
2 tsp sugar
1 tbsp corn starch
black pepper

sourdough rolls

0.25 cup mayo
2 tbsp sriracha
1 jalapeno

3 carrots
1 tbsp sugar
0.25 tsp salt
1.5 tbsp vinegar
1 tsp sesame oil

Mix the turkey with the chopped cilantro, minced scallion, minced garlic, fish sauce, sriracha, sugar, corn starch and salt and pepper to taste.

Julienne the carrots. Toss with the sugar, salt, vinegar and oil mixture. Can mince in some cilantro leaves.

Mix the mayo with the sriracha and the minced jalapeno.

Shape the meatballs and transfer to freezer for 20 minutes. Fry them in a shallow pan of oil on medium-high heat until golden brown outside. Remove onto paper towels and allow to drain any excess oil off.

Take the sourdough rolls, cut them in halves and crisp them up in a toaster. Spread the sriracha mayo on them. Add the meatballs and top with the carrot salad. Serve.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Beef noodle soup

This aromatic, flavorful, comforting bowl of noodle soup recalls the scents of authentic pho soup restaurants even during cooking.

bones of a rotisserie chicken
4 cups beef stock
3 cup water
3-4 star anise
6 cloves garlic
3 bay leaves
1-inch ginger
1 tsp fennel seeds
1 tsp sichuan peppercorns
0.5 tsp white pepper
peel of one orange
0.25 tsp cardamom

1 lb daikon radish
0.5 lb udon noodles
chili oil
chopped cilantro
chopped mint
0.5 lb roast beef

Take the bones of the rotisserie chicken and add them to a large Dutch oven. Add to it the stock and water, and all the spices.

Peel the orange parts of the orange peel to add to the mix and slice the ginger into 0.25-inch-thick slices.

Bring the contents of the pot to a boil. Simmer on low heat, covered, for two hours and 30 minutes.

Drain the broth through a filter to remove spices and bones. Add the sliced daikon radish and simmer for another 30 minutes.

Prepare udon noodles according to package instructions. Add to two soup bowls. Ladle broth with radish over. Add ribbons of roast beef and shredded mint and cilantro leaves. Serve with scallions sprinkled over.

Spicy chicken salad

Want a filling winter salad, that warms you from the inside with a spicy kick while replenishing your vitamin cravings so you can avoid scurvy this winter? Try this easy, spicy, flavorful one.

1 rotisserie chicken
0.5 cup mint leaves
0.5 cup cilantro leaves
8 oz mixed baby greens
2 tbsp tahini
2 tbsp chili oil
2 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp lime juice
2 tsp sugar
3 cloves garlic
2 tbsp sesame seeds

Mix the tahini, oil, suy sauce, lime juice and the sugar. Add the crushed garlic.

Toast the sesame seeds and mix into sauce as well.

Using kitchen shears, chop the mint and cilantro leaves and mix them into salad greens.

Remove meat from rotisserie chicken and cut into bite-size pieces. Toss with the sauce.

Distribute chicken onto the salad greens and drizzle all with remaining sauce. Serve.

Spicy sesame noodles

Such a wonderful kick to these succulent, satisfying noodle dish. If you are not into spicy, you may wish to skip this one.

2 tbsp tahini
2 tbsp chili oil
2 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp lime juice
2 tsp sugar
3 cloves garlic
2 scallions
1 tbsp sesame seeds
3 carrots
8 oz udon noodles

Stir together the tahini, chili oil soy sauce, lime juice, sugar, and minced garlic.

Slice the scallions into thin slices and add to the mix. Toast the sesame seeds and blend into sauce as well.

Cook noodles according to package directions. Drain. Meanwhile, julienne the carrots.

Mix the carrots and the noodles, then drizzle in sauce and stir well. Serve at room temperature, if you wish to follow my preference.

Friday, January 8, 2016

Turkey dumplings

These dim-sum delicacies are perfect with a dipping sauce of Sriracha, scallions, and soy sauce. So conveniently easy to freeze, and the comfort of knowing what's inside of them contrasts the premade versions sold in supermarkets.

50 wonton wrappers
1 pound 80% lean ground turkey
0.5 cup Chinese cooking wine
3 tbsp oil
2 tbsp sesame oil
2 tsp salt
2 tbsp soy sauce
0.25 tsp white pepper
1/3 cup water
6 oz spinach leaves
6 oz arugula leaves

Blanch the greens in a pot of boiling water. Drain in a colander and then squeeze out as well as you can.
Chop into very fine pieces.

In a large bowl, mix together the meat, wine, oils, spice, soy sauce, water, and chopped vegetables. Mix well, until homogeneous and smooth.

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Remove the wonton wrappers from their coating. prepare a bowl of water nearby.

Cut the wonton wrappers into circles and add about a tbsp of filling to one after dampening the edge with water. Seal the middle and crimp the edges closed into a half moon shape, pressing out extra air.

Place onto the parchment paper-lined cookie sheet.

Place cookie sheet into the freezer for an hour. Collect dumplings into ZipLoc bags and freeze.

When using, spray a nonstick pan with vegetable oil. Preheat on medium high, until nearly smoking. Add the dumplings, make sure they are not crowded. Sear until light brown.

Add about a tbsp of water per dumpling and cover. Add more water if necessary. Allow to steam until cooked. When done, wait a moment, and removing them will be easier. Place dumplings onto serving plate.

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Green curry with fish

A delicious, creamy delight. The fruit and mint are a real treat in this dish, and they add a lovely color as well. Invented by Chef John at Foodwishes.

1 onion
1 tbsp oil
1 tsp salt
3 tbsp green curry paste
0.5 tsp pepper flakes
2 cups chicken broth
1 pound frozen green peas
0.5 can anchovies (5-6 filets)
1 pound cod filets
8 strawberries
2 tbsp mint

Dice the onion and saute on the vegetable oil with the pepper flakes until translucent. Add the green curry paste and stir in, cooking for a minute or two.

Mince the anchovies and add to the pot. Add the chicken stock and bring to a boil.

Add the green peas and bring back to a boil. Simmer for a few minutes, until the peas are soft, but stop before they lose their vibrant green color.

Season with salt and puree completely. Strain through a fine-mesh strainer and collect the creamy liquid. Season with salt and any additional green curry paste.

Brown the fish and place into the creamy pea curry. Garnish with minced strawberries and mint leaves. This makes two servings.