Tuesday, December 29, 2015

[Cook] Prawn Spaghetti

An awesome spaghetti with gorgeous prawn flavours and a kick from cili padi.

Cherry Tomatoes250g
Onion1 bulb
Garlic5 cloves
Cili Padi8

- Cook
spaghetti till al-dente, set aside some pasta water for later. 
(you can time it so spaghetti is cooked in parallel with the steps below)
- Add a generous amount of olive oil, about 6 tbsp.
- Fry garlic and onion until brown.
- Add cili padi and cherry tomatoes and fry for a minute.

* For the cili padi I simply cut off the top and added them whole. This allows me to easily pick them out later
- Add prawns and fry until just turned red.
- Throw in chicken stock and cover pan to allow it to steam and retain all the wonderful prawn juices. 

- After 3 mins throw in the spaghetti and a bit of pasta water.
- Toss everything together and season as needed. 

- Turn off heat and chop up and add the fresh parsley

This has definitely become one of my favourite recipes!
The pasta captured the wonderful flavors of the prawns and I think will work well with any shelled seafood (lala, crabs etc)

*** These are cooking notes/experiments and are not perfect recipes.

Monday, December 28, 2015

[Cook] Roast Chicken with Brussel Sprouts

A fairly simple way to cook a delicious chicken dish.

Whole Chicken Leg4 pieces
Dried Rosemaryhandful
Sea saltas you like
Olive oilas needed
Brussel Sprouts200g

- Marinade chicken with olive oil, dried rosemary, salt and pepper. Squeeze in half a lemon. Leave for a few hours.
- Remove from marinade. Pat dry with paper towel to get crispy skin.
- Heat olive oil in cast iron pan, put chicken legs skin side down for 5 mins.
- Preheat oven to 220 Celsius.
- Move entire pan from stove into oven.
- Cook for approx 40 mins (depends on chicken leg size).
* One way to test chicken is cooked, poke thickest part of chicken, if juices run clear it is done.
- Move chicken legs out on a plate to rest.
- For some gravy, put pan back on stove with low heat, scrape off all the wonderful bits stuck on the pan. Add chicken stock and corn flour to thicken. Season as needed.

I have also added brussel sprouts. What an interesting looking vege, it is my 1st time encountering it.
Kinda look like tiny cabbages. Tastes phenomenal.
These are optional.
Cooking time for these are about 20-25 mins.
- In a bowl add olive oil, salt and pepper. Using hands mix together with brussel sprouts and ensure each one is well coated.
- After chicken has been cooking for 20 mins, toss in brussel sprouts into pan.

Overall a very nice dish, the brussel sprouts were very awesome.
Crunchy on the outside and melt in your mouth insides.

*** These are cooking notes/experiments and are not perfect recipes.

Sunday, December 13, 2015

[Cook] Why Did The Chicken Get An Ice Bath?

Experimented with boiling 2 chicken thighs for about 45 mins and then took out both.
One left to cool at room temperature, another was dunked in water filled with ice.

Chicken that was dunked in ice water was noticeably tastier. Meat and skin were both more firm.

NOTE TO SELF : Always dunk boiled chicken in ice water when possible.

[Cook] Szechuan Vegetable Soup

I have recently been craving for a good bowl of soup. A nice flavor-packed-slurp-down-till-the-last-drop soup. Browsing online I bumped into a nice tomyam recipe. Gonna save this for later.

But this time I have decided to go for a pork based soup with my favourite Szechuan preserved vege. 
Didn't really find any interesting recipes of the net so I have decided to just wing it.
Definite must haves are the pork bones and Szechuan preserved vege.
Inspired by the tomyam recipe, I decided to add in mushrooms and chillies.
Of course a smattering of Chinese wolfberries to make it "healthy".

Pork bones476g
Szechuan vege2 balls(?) about the size of a tennis ball
Enoki Mushroomsas you like
Straw Mushroomsas you like
Baby spinachas you like
Taufuas you like
Goji Wolfberryas you like

- Boil pork bones in a pot for about half an hour. Dump the water.
- Move pork bones to slow cooker, fill with water and cook on high for 2 hours.
- Set to low and cook overnight.
- Rinse and soak Szechuan vege in bowl of water for 20mins.
- Cut and add to slow cooker. Add a couple of cili padi. Cook for another hour.
- Taste soup, adjust as necessary ( add salt etc).
- When soup is ok throw in any added ingredients. Mushrooms, spinach and tofu for me.
- Wonderful soup is ready!

Overall nice soup. Pork taste wasn't as strong as I'd like.

*** These are cooking notes/experiments and are not perfect recipes.