Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Pak Choy with Fresh Shiitake

A simple stir-fry greens with fresh shiitake mushrooms. Great as part of a meal with rice, or noodles. According to the author, dried shiitake mushrooms can be used instead. The dried shiitake have to be soaked first and precooked before using them in the recipe. I will try that the next time.



This dish is usually served in Chinese restaurants, though it is a richer version with glossy sauce made with some rich stock, thickened with some corn starch solution. Instead of pak choy, brocolli can be used instead. 


One of my favourite dishes when eating at Chinese wedding banquet.


Pak Choy With Fresh Shiitake
(adapted from "Every Grain Of Rice", by Fuchsia Dunlop)
300gm pak choy
6 fresh shiitake mushrooms
1/4 tsp caster sugar
1/2 tsp potato flour mixed with 1 tbsp water
salt
3-1/2 tbsp cooking oil
3 garlic cloves, sliced
an equivalent amount of ginger, peeled and sliced

Wash the pak choy, the cut each head lengthways into quarters. Slice off and discard the mushroom stalks and halve the caps. Combine the sugar with the potato flour mixture.
Bring some water to a boil in a saucepan (1 litre will do), add 1/2 tsp salt and 1/2 tbsp oil, then blanch the pak choy and mushrooms briefly, just until the pak choy leaves have wilted, Drain and shake dry.
Add the remaining 3 tbsp of oil to a seasoned wok over a high flame, swirl it around, then add the garlic and ginger and stir a few times until you can smell their fragrances. Tip in the blanched mushrooms, and pak choy and stir a few times. Finally, add the potato flour mixture with salt to taste, give everything a good stir and serve.

kitchen flavours notes :
I did not blanch the pak choy, but microwave for 2 minutes. And did not blanch nor precooked the fresh shiitake, but used them directly in the recipe. Stir fry the mushrooms with the ginger and garlic for two minutes, then add the pak choy.


I'm linking this post with Cookbook Countdown #18 hosted by 



Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Marble Sheet Cake

Marble cake is always a favourite. This simple cake makes a wonderful treat for tea time, breakfast and for snacking anytime of the day. According to the author, "This is the perfect cake to make when you're not sure whether it's gonna be chocolate or vanilla". 



I used the stand mixer with the whisk attachment to make this cake, but it can be made using a bowl with a hand whisk with some elbow grease. The only changes I've made is, as usual, I've reduced the sugar to 180gm (from the original of 300gm). The sweetness turns out just right, without being overly sweet.



Cake is moist, with soft crumbs. Lovely vanilla fragrance and the chocolate batter really shines through with chocolaty taste from the cocoa powder. Yummy cake!


Marble Sheet Cake
(One Bowl Baking, Yvonne Ruperti)
16 tablespoons (8 ounces or 225gm) unsalted butter, softened, plus more for greasing the pan.
1-1/2 cups (10-1/2 ounces or 300gm) granulated sugar (I use 180gm)
3/4 teaspoon salt (omitted salt, as I've used salted butter)
4 large eggs
1-1/4 cups (300ml) plus 1 tbsp (15ml) while milk, room temperature, divided
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
2-3/4 cups (11 ounces or 310gm) cake flour
2-1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/3 cup (1 ounce or 28gm) cocoa powder

Place an oven rack in the  middle position.
Preheat the oven to 350F (180C). Butter a 13x9x2-inch baking pan.
In a large bowl, stir the butter, sugar and salt until combined
Whisk in the eggs, one at a time, until each is incorporated. Whisk in 1-1/4 cups milk and the vanilla.
Add the cake flour and baking powder to the bowl, then whisk until just combined.
Spoon half of the batter (about 3 cups) into the pan in random blobs.
Whisk the cocoa and the remaining tablespoon milk into the remaining batter.
Spoon the chocolate batter into the empty spots and then swirl the batters together.
Bake until lightly golden, just firm, and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 25 to 30 minutes.
Set the pan on a wire rack to let the cake cool completely before frosting.


I'm linking this post with Cookbook Countdown #18 hosted by 



Monday, June 19, 2017

Scrambled Eggs, Indian Style

This week at I Heart Cooking Clubs (IHCC), it is June Monthly Featured Dish/Ingredient Challenge : Asian Dishes. I wanted to make a curry dish, but did not have much time this week, so I've made this simple Scrambled Eggs, Indian Style, from Madhur Jaffrey



A quick, simple egg dish that is cooked in just minutes. Scrambled eggs are always perfect if you want a quick meal, and this style with chopped tomatoes, onions and fresh cilantro is delicious. Madhur Jaffrey says that the Indians like their scrambled eggs "hard". I don't mind them hard too, as they are great with rice when cooked this way. I've cooked them longer just as Madhur Jaffrey did, and ate these scrambled eggs with leftover rice for lunch, while my son had the eggs with some slices of homemade bread.


Scrambled Eggs, Indian Style
(100 Essential Curries, Madhur Jaffrey)
Serves 2-3
3 tablespoons butter
1/2 medium onion, finely chopped
1 small tomato, chopped
1 tablespoon chopped fresh green coriander
1/2 - 1 hot green chilli, finely sliced
4 medium or large eggs, well beaten
salt and pepper, to taste

Melt the butter in a 25cm (10in) frying pan over medium heat. Add the onion and saute for a minute or until they begin to turn translucent. Add the chopped tomatoes, green coriander and sliced green chilli. Stir and cook for 3-4 minutes or until the tomatoes soften a bit.
Pour in the beaten eggs. Sprinkle on salt and pepper lightly. Stir and move the eggs around with a fork. Indians like their scrambled eggs rather hard (cooked about 3 minutes), but you can stop whenever the desired consistency has been achieved.


I'm link this post with I Heart Cooking Clubs (IHCC), theme for this week
June Monthly Featured Dish/Ingredient Challenge : Asian Dishes

and

I'm linking this post with Cookbook Countdown #18 hosted by 




Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Spicy Buckwheat Noodles

A simple and tasty noodle dish. One important ingredient here is the chilli oil, as it really makes the dish. Fuchsia Dunlop's Chilli Oil is simply fabulous.  It is easy to make and do not take much time at all.



Homemade Chilli Oil, recipe from Fuchsia Dunlop's book, Every Grain Of Rice. According to the author, Chilli Oil is "one of the essential ingredients in Sichuanese cold dishes, this is also used in dips for dumplings and other snacks."  I love this Chilli Oil! Tasty with that toasty fragrant chilli aroma. I've used Korean red chilli flakes, used for kimchi making, which is great, as it is not too spicy, yet with a light spicy heat, and they give a beautiful red hue to the oil.



A simple and easy noodle dish. There's an option to use cooked shredded chicken meat, of which I have omitted, and made it plain instead, as pictured in the book. The Chilli Oil is what makes this noodle tasty. Other ingredients that complement the oil; soy sauce, Chinkiang vinegar, sugar, salt, chopped garlic, spring onion greens and chopped fresh red chillies. Mix them with the cooked noodles, (taste and add more seasonings or chilli oil as needed), garnish with more red chillies and lots of chopped spring onion greens, you have a tasty bowl of noodle.  Delicious eaten either warm or cold. 


Spicy Buckwheat Noodles
(Every Grain Of Rice by Fuchsia Dunlop)
160gm dried buckwheat noodles
a little cooking oil
1 tbsp light or tamari soy sauce
2 tbsp Chinkiang vinegar
1/2 tsp caster sugar
salt, to taste
4 tbsp chilli oil (with its sediment, if desired) * refer recipe below
1-2 tsp finely chopped garlic, to taste
3 tbsp finely sliced spring onion greens
a little cold, cooked chicken meat, torn into shreds (optional)
2 tsp finely chopped fresh red chillies, plus a few chilli slices to serve

Bring a pan of water to a boil and cook the noodles to your liking. Rinse in cold water and shake dry. If you want to eat the noodles cold, sprinkle a little plain oil on them and mix well with chopsticks, before spreading the noodles out to cool (the oil will stop them from sticking together).
Place the noodles in a deep bowl and add all the other ingredients, except the chilli slices. Mix well, turn on to a serving dish and top with the chicken shreds (if using) and the sliced chillies.


Chilli Oil
500ml cooking oil
100gm Sichuanese or Korean ground chillies (I use Korean chilli flakes, used for making kimchi)
1 tsp sesame seeds
small piece of ginger, unpeeled, crushed

Heat the oil over a high flame to about 200C, then leave for 10 minutes to cool to around 140C.
Place the ground chillies, sesame seeds and ginger in a heatproof bowl. Have a little cool oil or a cupful of water to hand. When the oil has cooled to the right temperature, pour a little on to the chillies, it should fizz gently but energetically and release a rich, roasty aroma. Pour over the rest of the oil and stir. If you think the oil is too hot and the chillies are likely to burn, simply add a little cool oil to release the excess heat. Do, though, make sure that the oil is hot enough; without the fizzing, it won't generate the rich, roasty fragrance you need. If you pour all the oil on to the chillies, then discover it's not quite hot enough, you can return the whole lot a saucepan and heat gently until it smells fabulous and the colour is a deep ruby red, but take care not to burn the chillies. (The chillies will seethe and fizz like a witch's cauldron as you heat them, releasing the most marvellous aromas, but can easily start to burn and blacken).
When the oil has cooled completely, decant it and the chilli sediment into jars and store in a dark, cool place. Leave it to settle for at least a day before using.


I'm linking this post with Cookbook Countdown #18 hosted by 



Thursday, June 8, 2017

Hangzhou Aubergines

This is a delicious aubergine dish, goes really well with white fluffy rice, as part of a Chinese meal with a plate of green veggie stir-fry, a bowl of soup and a meat or egg dish. Though I would be happy with just this one dish alone with hot fluffy rice.

There's quite an amount of oil used in the recipe, to fry the sliced aubergines. I use only about half a cup of oil, enough to fry one side of the aubergines, then I turned the aubergines to fry on the other side. This way there's no need to use so much of oil for deep-frying. Be sure to drain the fried aubergines on kitchen paper to absorb all the excess oil. I have doubled the amount of minced pork, and added a little more of the fermented sauce, and soy sauce. Taste as you cook, to your liking.



This is not a new dish to me, as it is really a dish that can be found quite commonly in Chinese restaurants over here, and one of our favourites. But it is interesting to see how the same dish is being cooked in another part of the world. A delicious dish that I will definitely be cooking again in my kitchen.


Hangzhou Aubergines
(Every Grain Of Rice by Fuchsia Dunlop)
400gm aubergines
salt
cooking oil, for deep-frying (350ml) will do
50-75gm minced pork, ideally with a little fat
2 tsp finely chopped ginger
1 tbsp sweet fermented sauce
2 tbsp stock
1 tbsp Shaoxing wine
1 tsp light soy sauce
1/2 tsp dark soy sauce
1/4 tsp potato flour mixed with 2 tsp cold water
2 tbsp finely chopped spring onion greens

Cut the aubergines lengthways into 2cm slices, then cut the slices into 2cm strips. Cut these into 5-6cm lengths. Sprinkle with a little salt, mix well and leave in a colander to drain for 30 minutes or so.
Heat the oil for deep-frying to 180-200C. Shake the aubergines dry and deep-fry, in  a couple of batches, until slightly golden. Remove with a slotted spoon and set aside on kitchen paper.
Drain off the deep-frying oil, rinse the wok if necessary, then return it to a high flame. When the wok is hot again, add 1-2 tbsp oil, swirl it around, then add the pork and stir-fry over a medium flame until the meat has lost its pinkness and the oil has cleared again. Add the ginger and stir to release its fragrance, Add the fermented sauce and stir until it smells delicious, too. Add the stock, Shaoxing wine, soy sauces and sugar, return the aubergines, and mix well.
Toss the aubergines in the sauce, then give the potato flour mixture a stir and pour it into the centre of the wok, moving briskly to stir it in. Add the spring onions, stir a few times, then serve.


I'm linking this post with Cookbook Countdown #18 hosted by 




I have happy news  to share, Kitchen Flavours has been selected by Feedspot as one of the Top 50 Malaysia Food Blogs on the web. You can read all about it, and see the full list at Feedspot.

Malaysia Food Blogs

Thank you Feedspot. I am honoured!



Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Blueberry-Buttermilk Pie Bars

This week at Tuesdays With Dorie (TWD), baking from Dorie's Cookies, I've made Blueberry-Buttermilk Pie Bars. These bars are easy to make and yummy to eat.



Bottom layer is a buttery crust with some cornmeal mixed in for that added texture and the top is a layer of custard dotted with juicy blueberries.



I did reduce the sugar for both layers. For the crust, I've used only 50gm sugar, and for the custard layer, I've reduced the sugar to only 1/4 cup, half the amount calls for in the recipe. Which works out really well, as the bars are not too sweet, with just the right amount of sweetness. I've used frozen blueberries.



While I was slicing the baked bars into squares, the juicy blueberries squirted out its' juices when the knife cuts into them, surprising both my son and I!  These bars are quite delicious to eat, the cornmeal crust is tender and buttery. The custard reminds me of custardly Chinese egg tarts! Juicy blueberries bursting in every bite makes it such a delightful bar to enjoy!

If you would like to give this a try, the recipe can be found at Dorie's website, here.


Thursday, June 1, 2017

Cornbread

It is potluck week at I Heart Cooking Clubs (IHCC). I have missed a few weeks of cooking with Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, our current featured chef at IHCC, so for this potluck week, I've made one of his recipe, Cornbread. 



I like eating cornbread and have made a few versions from different chefs recipes. In HFW's recipe, he has given a few variations like adding chilli, sweetcorn, spring onions and cheddar. Even diced chrorizo, chopped olives, mushrooms and fresh herbs.

To his original recipe, I have added some fresh chives from my garden pot, two each of jalapenos and red chillies, which are deseeded and chopped.



The Cornbread bakes up moist, soft and very tasty. I like the heat from the red chillies and jalapenos.


Cornbread
(River Cottage Everyday by Hugh Fearnleyt-Whittingstall)
Makes 12 pieces
125gm cornmeal or fine polenta (or use half fine and half coarse polenta for a crunchier texture)
125gm plain white flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon fine sea salt
1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
2 medium eggs
1 tablespoon runny honey or soft brown sugar
150gm buttermilk (or plain whole-milk yoghurt)
150ml whole milk
25gm unsalted butter, melted

Grease a 23cm square baking tin, about 4cm deep.
In a large bowl, mix together the cornmeal, flour, baking powder, salt and bicarbonate of soda. Make a well in the middle.
Whisk together the eggs, honey or sugar, buttermilk or yoghurt, milk and melted butter. Pour into the well in the dry ingredients and stir until everything is just combined. Don't overmix; a few lumps in the batter are fine. You need to get it into the oven as quickly as possible once the bicarbonate of soda and buttermilk start reacting.
Pour the batter into the baking tin and place in an oven preheated to 220C/Gas Mark 7. Bake for about 20 minutes, until the cornbread is golden and has shrunk slightly from the sides of the tin. Place the tin on a wire rack to cool for a few minutes before cutting the bread into squares. Serve warm.


I'm linking this post with I Heart Cooking Clubs (IHCC), theme for this week
May IHCC Potluck

and

I'm linking this post with Cookbook Countdown #18 hosted by 


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