Posts filed under ‘Popular Ethnic Dishes’

Halvah – A small batch

halvah

More adventures in candy making.
My mother’s really going to kill me for this one. She absolutely adores halvah. Good thing it’s a small batch. =)

1/4 cup water
1 cup sugar
3/4 cup of tahini paste
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
candy thermometer
metal loaf pan, greased and lined with parchment

Pour sugar into a heavy sauce pan
pour the water over the sugar, don’t stir
bring to a boil over high heat
using the thermometer bring to a temperature of 260°F

Pour the tahini and vanilla into a microwave-safe bowl
zap for a minute or so just before the sugar syrup is ready
temperature of the tahini needs should be 100 – 110°F

Add the warmed tahini to the sugar syrup
remove from heat
mix well until incorporated
pour into the prepared loaf pan
even out the mixture quickly with a heatproof utensil before it begins to set up

Allow to rest and cool in the pan for a minumum of 12 hours at room temperature

May 7, 2017 at 8:27 pm Leave a comment

Red Lentil Dal

dal

The original recipe came from The New York Times by Nigella Lawson. I didn’t feel the need to reduce the amounts for my usual small batch, I’m looking forward to leftovers. But I did change a few ingredients and or measurements. And I used a pressure cooker to speed up cooking time, while Nigella’s version is done on the stove top.

2 tablespoon vegetable oil or ghee
1 medium onion, diced
1 medium sweet potato, diced (or a cup of diced butternut squash)
1 inch fresh ginger, grated
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 generous squirt of sriracha (or not)
1 – 1 1/2 cups dry red lentils
1/2 teaspoon prepared curry
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon turmeric
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
2 tomatoes, diced (or canned as the original recipe states, or even tomato sauce)
salt and pepper
4 cups water or stock (I did half and half)
1/2 can of coconut milk (be sure to shake the can before opening to combine the milk with the fat)

Sauté onion over a medium-low flame until softened
add sweet potato, and sauté for about 5 minutes
add fresh ginger and garlic, stir to combine
reduce heat to low

Add lentils and dry seasoning to the pot
stir until lentils are well coated
add tomatoes and water
cover, raise heat to bring to a boil, then reduce heat until mixture is at a fast simmer
cook for 12-15 minutes (double the time for stove top version)

Once the main cooking time is complete, release the pressure from the cooker
stir in coconut milk and season to taste with salt and pepper

stir vigorously to combine and break up the lentils and sweet potatoes
if the dal is to thick, add more water or stock
if it’s too loose, cook uncovered to reach desired consistency

Garnish with cilantro and shredded coconut.

Some of the comments mentioned adding baby spinach. I may do that for the next batch.

May 4, 2017 at 4:16 pm Leave a comment

Polenta – A small batch

polenta

Things to know about making perfect polenta every time
1. polenta = cornmeal Any variety can be used
2. presoak the cornmeal before cooking
3. the best ratio is 5:1, water to cornmeal

2 1/2 cups water
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup cornmeal
1 tablespoon butter
splash of cream

First, presoak the cornmeal
Pour the cornmeal and 1/2 cup of cold water into a bowl
whisk so there are no lumps
then allow to sit for a minimum 10 minutes (the longer the soak, the shorter the cooking time)

Next, pour the remaining 2 cups of water and salt into a pot, and bring to a boil

Now, gradually whisk in the cornmeal and cold water mixture

Let the cornmeal and water come to a boil
then let simmer gently

stir frequently, so there’s no sticking
cook until desired thickness is reached, about 20-30 minutes

At the end, stir in the butter and the cream

Leftover can be chilled, sliced, and fried, then served with maple syrup or a sprinkle of sugar.

February 26, 2017 at 6:37 pm Leave a comment

Deconstructed Stuffed Cabbage

stuffed

I love stuffed cabbage, but who has the time, am I right!? This recipe is based on one for the Instant Pot and is super simple. I used a pressure cooker instead, but it can also be done in a Dutch oven, just double the cooking time.

1 pound ground beef, browned and drained
1 onion, diced
1 garlic clove, minced
1 cup tomato sauce
1 tablespoon ketchup
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon paprika
salt
pepper
1 cup stock
1/4 cup water
1 cup cooked rice
1 small to medium cabbage, chopped
oil for sauteing

Saute the onions and garlic until almost brown
throw in the rest of the ingredients
toss until well combined
cover and cook for 20 minutes in a pressure cooker

Season to taste and serve.

February 23, 2017 at 9:18 pm Leave a comment

Maki Sushi – A small batch

img_20170121_174905_146

Imitation crab and avocado

I’m usually immune to the lure of one-off kitchen gadgets, but this one, for the price, could not be beat. I LOVE IT!

img_20170104_123552_076

My attempts previously using a traditional method, were far from successful. I still need some practice with my Sushezi aka the sushi bazooka, but I’m really pleased with the results.

Rice seasoning
1/4 cup rice vinegar
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt

Combine, microwave for 1 minute, and set aside

The rice
1 cup short or medium grain rice, Arborio, CalRose, or sushi rice
1  1/4 cup water
1/4 cup seasoned rice vinegar
dried seaweed sheets (nori)
and what ever you want to use for filling

Wash and rinse rice well and often, until the water runs clear
strain rice and allow to drain for 30 minutes
add cold water to a pot, add rice, and allow to sit, off heat for 30 minutes
then bring to a boil
cover, lower heat to lowest setting, and simmer for 20 minutes
do not lift cover, turn off heat, and allow to sit for 15 minutes
pour seasoned vinegar onto hot rice
mix well with wood spoon
let cool until cool enough to handle

Follow the instructions that come with the Sushezi sushi maker and you’re ready to go

January 23, 2017 at 11:25 pm 1 comment

Thai-style Peanut Sauce

peanut-sauce

This recipe makes a concentrate, which should be stored in the refrigerator. Scoop out a bit at a time for whatever recipe might call for some. It needs the addition of coconut milk or water to revive the paste into a sauce.

3/4 cup peanut butter (I prefer the super-chunky natural variety)
1 tablespoon Sriracha
1 tablespoon soy sauce
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons white or apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup water

Combine all in ingredients in a saucepan and whisk to combine
once emulsified put in a jar and store in the fridge

To make a sauce, mix a portion of concentrate with coconut milk preferably, or water, and heat in the microwave for 15 to 30 seconds. Stir until combined.

For a small batch, about a quarter cup, the ratio is approximately 2 tablespoons peanut sauce concentrate to 1 1/2 tablespoon liquid.

December 3, 2016 at 3:17 pm Leave a comment

Refried Beans – A small batch

refried

So much better than the ready-made kind.

2 slices bacon, diced
1 small onion, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 can pinto beans, don’t drain
water
salt and pepper

In a frying pan, saute bacon
when well browned, remove from pan, leaving the fat
add onion and garlic to the fat
cook until just golden brown
add the can of beans with the liquid, mix well
cook covered for 5 – 7 minutes

Mash to desired consistency with a potato masher
add a splash of water to thin
cover and cook for 5 more minutes
mash the beans a bit more
season to taste

November 20, 2016 at 9:16 pm Leave a comment

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