Food 2010 – Recipes (Vegetable Stir-Fry, Maki Sushi, Miso Soup, Tempura Vegetables with Chilli Dipping Sauce, Cauliflower and Potato Fritters, Sweet Curry Sauce, Thai Green Curry Paste, Sauce Épice, Thai Green Chicken Curry, Exotic Fruit Gratin with Coconut Rice)

Monday, 19th January 2010 – Recipes (Vegetable Stir-Fry, Maki Sushi, Miso Soup, Tempura Vegetables with Chilli Dipping Sauce, Cauliflower and Potato Fritters, Sweet Curry Sauce, Thai Green Curry Paste, Sauce Épice, Thai Green Chicken Curry, Exotic Fruit Gratin with Coconut Rice)

Vegetable Stir-Fry

Makes: 4 servings
Preparation Time: 10 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons (30 millilitres) groundnut oil
  • 2 (15 grams) garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon (10 grams) ginger, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 (8 grams) snap nose red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
  • 1 (80 grams) small red pepper, deseeded and finely sliced
  • 1 (80 grams) small carrot, sliced finely
  • 1 (80 grams) head pak choi, sliced
  • 1 (80 grams) handful sugar snap peas, cut in half lengthways
  • 1 (80 grams) small courgette, finely sliced
  • 1 (80 grams) handful Chinese cabbage, sliced
  • 1 (50 grams) handful shitake mushrooms, stalks removed and sliced
  • 1 (50 grams) handful bean sprouts
  • 2 tablespoons (30 millilitres) soy sauce
  • 4 tablespoons (60 millilitres) boiling water
  • 2 (40 grams) spring onions, finely chopped
  • 1 (8 grams) handful coriander, roughly chopped

Method:

  1. In a wok, heat the oil to smoking point.
  2. Add the garlic, chilli and ginger and then all the vegetables.
  3. Stir fry for 1 minute.
  4. Add the soy sauce, and water. Cover with a lid and cook for 1-2 minutes.
  5. Stir in the coriander and spring onions, taste and correct the seasoning if necessary.

Notes:
Snap nose chillies are milder than most. If you can’t get snap nose (or Rio Grande) use less chilli.
Serve the vegetables as a base for the ravioli and bisque.

Maki Sushi

Makes: 32 pieces
Preparation Time: 20 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 200 grams sushi rice (short grain white rice)
  • 240 millilitres water
  • 50 millilitres rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon (15 grams) caster sugar
  • ½ tablespoon (8 millilitres) mirin
  • 4 sheets nori seaweed
  • 1 tablespoon (15 grams) wasabi paste
  • 250 grams salmon fillet cut into strips 1 centimetre square and 20 centimetres long
  • 1 cucumber, deseeded and cut into strips 1 centimetre square and 20 centimetres long
  • ½ avocado, cut into 1 centimetre square strips

Method:

  1. Wash the rice under running water until the water runs clear then allow it to drain thoroughly.
  2. Place the rice in a large saucepan with the water and leave it to stand for 30 minutes.
  3. Bring to the boil then simmer for 8-10 minutes with a lid on.
  4. Turn off the heat and leave for 15 minutes to steam with the lid on.
  5. Fluff the rice with a wooden spoon then spread it evenly on a tray and leave cool to room temperature.
  6. In a small bowl, combine the vinegar, sugar, mirin and a teaspoon of salt. Stir until the sugar and salt dissolve.
  7. Pour the dressing over the rice and mix with a spatula.
  8. If necessary, toast the nori sheets by waving them over a high flame for a few seconds.
  9. Lay a sheet on the sushi mat with the shiny side down and the short end towards you.
  10. Evenly spread the rice, 1 centimetre thick, over the seaweed leaving a 1 centimetre gap at one end.
  11. Make a shallow groove down the centre of the rice from left to right and thinly spread some wasabi paste (optional).
  12. Arrange a strip of salmon, cucumber and avocado along the groove.
  13. Lift the edge nearest you and roll the sushi tightly.
  14. To finish, wet the edge of a sharp knife. Trim the ends of the rolls, then cut the roll into 8 evenly sized pieces.

Notes: If you roll and chill them the night before, the sushi is easier to slice.

Miso Soup

Makes: 4 servings
Preparation Time: 15 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1 litre cold water
  • 30 grams konbu (giant kelp)
  • 30 grams bonito flakes
  • 150 grams (½ packet) silken bean curd cut into ½ centimetre cubes
  • 1 teaspoon (5 grams) dried wakame seaweed, re-hydrated in cold water for 20 minutes
  • 4 tablespoons (60 grams) red or white miso paste
  • 2 (30 grams) spring onions, finely sliced
  • 15 grams shitake mushrooms, stalk removed and finely sliced
  • 10 grams nameko mushrooms

Method:

  1. Place the water in a pan with the giant kelp and bring the temperature up slowly. Do NOT boil. Remove the kelp just before the water boils.
  2. Bring the stock to the boil and stir in the dried bonito flakes.
  3. Bring the stock back to the boil then turn off the heat and let the bonito infuse for 3 minutes.
  4. When the flakes start to settle on the bottom of the pan, strain the liquid and reserve it.
  5. Bring the liquid back to a simmer.
  6. In a small bowl, dilute the miso with a few drops of stock and pour this mixture back into the stock.
  7. Bring it to a simmer and add all the other ingredients then serve.

Notes:
Kelp smells nasty if it is boiled so make sure you remove it before the soup boils.
Insert a fingernail into the kelp – if it is soft then you have obtained sufficient flavour from it. Remove it at that point.
If it’s tough, put it back in the pot for 1-2 minutes, adding 100 millilitres to stop the liquid from boiling.
Don’t boil the bonito too long or it will taste bitter.

Tempura Vegetables with Chilli Dipping Sauce

Makes: 4 servings
Preparation Time: 15 minutes
Cooking Time: 5 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 150 grams plain flour
  • 100 grams corn or potato flour
  • 1 teaspoon (5 grams) baking powder
  • Iced water
  • 1 (200 grams) medium courgette, cut into slices 2 millimetres thick
  • ¼ (200 grams) cauliflower, broken into small florets
  • 1 (200 grams) medium carrot, cut into slices 2 millimetres thick
  • 2 tablespoons (30 grams) sliced shallots
  • 1 teaspoon (5 grams) finely sliced garlic
  • 2 (5 grams) small Thai bird’s eye chillies, finely sliced
  • 3 tablespoons (45 millilitres) water
  • 3 tablespoons (45 millilitres) lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons (30 millilitres) soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons (15 grams) sugar

Method:

  1. Mix together the shallots, garlic, chillies, water, lime juice, soy sauce and sugar to make the dipping sauce.
  2. Pre-heat the deep fat fryer to 190 C.
  3. Make a batter from the flour, baking powder and iced water.
  4. Coat the vegetables in the batter and fry them for a few minutes until they are crisp.

Notes:
If you make the dipping sauce in advance, the heat will increase in strength.
Do not overcrowd the fryer. If you do, the heat will drop and the vegetables will not fry quickly enough.
Any leftover batter can be used to make savoury pancakes. You can even combine it with any leftover cauliflower and potato fritter batter before you do this.

Cauliflower and Potato Fritters

Makes: 4 servings
Preparation Time: 20 minutes
Cooking Time: 10 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 110 grams of potatoes, peeled and cut into 3 millimetre thick slices
  • 200 grams of cauliflower, broken into small florets
  • 4 teaspoons (20 millilitres) vegetable oil
  • 2 tablespoons (30 millilitres) lemon juice
  • 3 (15 grams) cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 20 grams ginger, finely chopped
  • 150 grams gram flour
  • 250 millilitres water
  • 3 pinches (3 grams) tumeric
  • 1 teaspoon (3 grams) chaat masala (made by dry roasting and then grinding together 4 tablespoons coriander seeds, 2 tablespoons cumin seeds, 1 teaspoon nigella seeds, 1 tablespoom amchoor powder, 2 dried chillies, 1 teaspoon pomegranate seeds)
  • 4 pinches (4 grams) sea salt
  • 2 pinches (1 gram) chilli powder
  • 2 pinches (1 gram) cinnamon powder
  • 5 pinches (2 grams) cumin powder
  • 5 pinches (2 grams) coriander powder
  • 4 pinches (2 grams) fenugreek powder
  • Amchoor powder (dried mango powder)

Method:

  1. Mix all the spices together then set aside 2 heaped teaspoons. Add the remainder to the flour and water to make a batter.
  2. Place the oil in a non-stick pan and gently fry the cauliflower and potatoes for 2 minutes.
  3. Add the 2 teaspoons of spices, the garlic and the ginger and stir together.
  4. Add the lemon juice and stir the vegetables again.
  5. Remove from the heat and allow to cool,
  6. Pre-heat the deep fat fryer to 190 C.
  7. Coat the vegetables in the batter and fry them for a few minutes until they are crisp and golden.
  8. Serve with a sprinkling of lemon juice and amchoor powder.
  9. Serve the Sweet Curry Sauce as an accompaniment.

Notes:
Any leftover batter can be used to make savoury pancakes. You can even combine it with any leftover tempura batter before you do this.

Sweet Curry Sauce

Makes: 6-8 servings
Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 20 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons (30 grams) unsalted butter
  • 1 (90 grams) small onion, finely chopped
  • 2 pinches (2 grams) fennel seeds
  • 3 pinches (3 grams) coriander powder
  • 5 pinches (5 grams) cumin powder
  • 3 pinches (3 grams) tumeric
  • 4 pinches (4 grams) Madras curry powder
  • 2 pinches (2 grams) chilli powder
  • 2 pinches (2 grams) cinnamon powder
  • 4 (½ gram) cardamom pods
  • 4 teaspoons (20 grams) garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoons (15 grams) ginger, finely chopped
  • 5 teaspoons (25 grams) black sultanas, finely chopped
  • 100 millilitres water
  • 100 grams tomatoes, finely chopped
  • 60 millilitres sour cream or crème fraiche
  • 4 tablespoons (20 grams) fresh coriander, chopped
  • Lemon juice.

Method:

  1. Soak the fennel seeds in cold water for 1 hour
  2. Over a medium heat, melt the butter and lightly colour the onions.
  3. Add the dry spices to the onions and cook for 2 minutes to develop the flavours.
  4. Add the ginger and garlic and sweat them for 2 minutes.
  5. Add the sultanas and water and simmer for 10 minutes.
  6. Add the tomatoes, sour cream, lemon juice and coriander. Taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary.

Notes:
Don’t colour the onions too much or the flavour will become bitter.
You could add poached fish or chicken or scallops to make a delicious curry.

Thai Green Curry Paste

Makes: 200 grams
Preparation Time: 15 minutes
Cooking Time: 20 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 2 pinches (1 gram) sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon (2 grams) coriander seeds
  • 3 (3 grams) coriander roots (use the stalks if you can’t get coriander roots)
  • 2 centimetres (6 grams) galangal, peeled and finely chopped (use ginger if you can’t find galangal)
  • 3 centimetres (12 grams) lemon grass, finely chopped
  • 10 (12 grams) green birds’ eye chillies
  • 1 teaspoon (5 grams) kaffir lime zest
  • 1 (60 grams) medium shallot, finely chopped
  • 3 (16 grams) cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1½ teaspoons shrimp paste (optional – wrap it in a banana leaf and grill it for 4-5 minutes before use).

Method:

  1. In a pestle and mortar, grind the spices, starting with the hardest one and finishing with the softest and wettest one (the order they are listed is the correct one).
  2. Only add the next spice once you have reduced the previous one to a smooth paste.

Notes:

DO NOT attempt to do this in a food processor unless you have an industrial strength one. There is a risk you will burn out the motor.
If you have no access to banana leaves, use foil to grill the shrimp paste.

Sauce Épice

Makes: 4 portions
Preparation Time: 5 minutes
Cooking Time: 25 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 60 grams olive oil
  • 1 (70 grams) shallot, diced
  • 100 grams fennel, diced
  • 250 grams red pepper, diced
  • ½ gram star anise
  • 30 grams lemon grass
  • 1 gram cardamom pods
  • 1 gram cumin seeds
  • 15o millilitres white wine, boiled for 2 minutes
  • 250 grams cherry tomatoes. diced
  • 1 gram salt
  • 2 millilitres olive oil to finish

Method:

  1. Sweat the shallots, fennel and lemongrass being careful not to colour them.
  2. Add the red pepper and the spices and cook for 10 minutes.
  3. Add the white wine and cook at a lively simmer until the quantity is reduced by half.
  4. Stir in the tomatoes and cook for 5 minutes.
  5. Leave to infuse for a further 10 minutes.
  6. Blitz the mixture in a blender and then pass it through a sieve.
  7. Finish with the olive oil and serve with the ravioli as an alternative to the crab bisque.

Notes:
This sauce can be made a day in advance and kept in the fridge. It also freezes well.

Thai Green Chicken Curry

Makes: 4 portions
Preparation Time: 30 minutes
Cooking Time: 15 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons (30 grams) coconut oil/non-scented oil (I use grapeseed)
  • 2 tablespoons (30 grams) Thai green curry paste
  • 1 tin (400 millilitres) coconut milk
  • 1 tablespoon (15 grams) palm sugar
  • 350 grams skinless chicken thigh fillets, cut into quarters
  • 50 grams pea aubergines
  • 50 grams bamboo shoots/baby corn (optional)
  • ½ tablespoon (8 grams) Thai fish sauce
  • 1 tablespoon (15 millilitres) freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 5 (2 grams) kaffir lime leaves, torn in half
  • 1 (5 grams) handful Thai basil leaves

Method:

  1. In the hot oil, sweat the curry paste being careful not to brown it.
  2. Add the coconut milk and palm sugar and bring the liquid to the boil.
  3. Allow it to reduce slightly.
  4. Add the aubergines and the chicken, lower the heat and simmer for 10 minutes.
  5. Add the fish sauce and the lime leaves. Taste and adjust the seasoning using lime juice and fish sauce.
  6. At the last minute, add the basil and serve.

Notes:
Do not boil the curry. If you do, the chicken pieces will be very dry. Cook it very slowly.
If you freeze it, the coconut milk will separate out. It will be OK once you reheat it though.

Exotic Fruit Gratin with Coconut Rice

Makes: 4 servings
Preparation Time: 30 minutes
Cooking Time: 20 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 120 grams stock syrup (60 grams caster sugar boiled with 60 millilitres of water)
  • 3 medium egg yolks
  • 80 millilitres cold water
  • 150 grams guava puree (reduced by ½ to 75 grams)
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • 4 tablespoons (60 grams) whipping cream
  • 1 (120 grams) mango, ripe, peeled, stoned and sliced
  • 2 (160 grams) papaya, ripe, peeled, deseeded and sliced
  • 2 (160 grams) banana, peeled and sliced
  • 2 (100 grams) kiwi fruit, peeled and sliced
  • 1 rambutan, peeled
  • 4 lychees, peeled
  • 3 passion fruit, juice and seeds
  • ½ lime, juiced
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 100 grams sticky rice, washed and drained
  • 600 millilitres unsweetened coconut milk
  • 80 grams caster sugar
  • Icing sugar to finish

Method:

  1. In a small saucepan, bring the caster sugar and water to the boil to create a syrup.
  2. Place the egg yolks and cold water into a large bowl and whisk it with an electric whisk for about 5 minutes until it reaches 5 times its original volume.
  3. With the whisk at full power, gradually stir in the hot syrup.
  4. Whisk for another 5 minutes until the sugar stock is incorporated and the mixture has cooled down.
  5. Whisk in the guava puree and the lime juice.
  6. In a separate bowl, whip the cream to medium peaks.
  7. Fold the cream into the egg/sugar syrup/puree mix and reserve it in the fridge.
  8. Wash the rice in plenty of water.
  9. Add it to the coconut milk and sugar and bring it to the boil.
  10. Simmer it quickly for 12-15 minutes, stirring frequently.
  11. The rice is cooked when the grains are soft and the cream surrounding them is thick.
  12. Divide the rice into 4 ramekins.
  13. To serve, heat the grill to full power or use a blow torch.
  14. Arrange the prepared fruits in the bottom of a small soup bowl.
  15. Spoon the sabayon generously over the fruit.
  16. Dust the dishes liberally with icing sugar and a few turns of black pepper.
  17. Flash the bowl under the grill or torch until the surface is golden brown.
  18. Serve with the rice.

Notes:
You can use an exotic fruit really as long as it is properly ripe.
Make this dish just before the meal. It is best served tepid.

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