Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘Fruits’ Category

I’ve moved! See the rest of this post at my new home.

Read Full Post »

**I’ve moved!  Read the rest of the post at my new home**

Read Full Post »

**I’ve moved! Read the rest of this post at my new home**

Read Full Post »

**I’ve moved! Read the rest of this post at my new home**

Read Full Post »

**I’ve moved! Recipe is at my new home**

Read Full Post »

Despite pork being the national meat of the Chinese (the word for meat in Chinese is “yook” – which is synonymous to the word for pork), I don’t really eat a lot of pork. Nothing against the pig, its just that I like the taste of chicken, seafood and expensive fatty steak.

But this recipe for Tandoori Orange Spiced Pork Chop ROCKS! The chops are seasoned with Tandoori seasoning (or, if you don’t have, make your own) and a pan sauce is made with carmelized onions, mushrooms, a quick squeeze of orange, white wine, orange sections and broth. The cardamom, ginger and cinnamon from the Tandoori seasoning just goes so well with orange. It’s seductive-spicy-sweet-fragrant. Serve with Saffron Basmati Rice and you’re in belly-dancing heaven.

Inspired by Simply Recipe’s Grilled Pork Tenderloin with Orange Marmalade Glaze but I didn’t have tenderloin nor marmalade. Instead I had chops and 1 orange…so I improvised.

Tandoori-Orange Spiced Pork Chops

serves 4

4 pork chops
1/2 cup kosher salt (for brine)
1/2 cup brown sugar (for brine)
1 tablespoon Tandoori spice
1/2 teaspoon ground pepper
1 orange, sectioned (see Beyond Salmon’s cool step by step), reserving the 2 ends & the middle membrane for juice
1 medium onion, sliced
1 pint sliced mushrooms
1/2 cup white wine
1/2 cup chicken broth
1 tablespoon unsalted butter

Brine the Pork Chop
This step is purely optional, but I’ve found that when I brine chicken or pork chop, it never dries out even if I accidentally overcook the chops. But I understand if you don’t have time, no big deal, just skip this step. Or, if your chops are really thin, don’t bother. Grab a big pot. Take the salt and brown sugar, dissolve in 2 cups of hot water. Add cold water and ice cubes to make total of gallon total of brine. Place pork chops in the cooled brine, refrigerate between 1 hour-2 hours. Rinse and pat dry. Season with Tandoori spice and ground pepper (no salt! its salty enough from brine) Note: If you want the chops to be brined for a longer period of time, just use less salt/sugar. Sometimes I put the meat in brine in the morning, go to work and come home to cook. I’ll just use half the amount of salt/sugar.

Fry the Pork Chop
In a pan large enough to hold all chops without touching each other, heat over high. Add 1 tablespoon of canola oil. When hot and shimmering, add pork chops to pan. Fry 2 minutes without moving, touching or peeking. Ok, now look – a nice brown crust! Flip the chops, turn the heat to medium-low and let it finish cooking through (internal temp 125.) Timing really depends on how thick your chops are. Really thin chops – just a couple of minutes. Thicker chops – cover the pan after flipping to get more heat in the pan. Really thick chops – best to stick it in the oven after flipping, 375 degrees for 8-10 minutes. Check the internal temp.

Remove chops from pan, let rest on plate while you make sauce.

Make the Sauce
Pour out all but 1 tablespoon of the pan drippings (most of it is fat). Place back on stovetop on medium heat. Add onions and cook until golden, soft and totally fragrant, about 3 minutes. Add mushrooms, cook another 2 minutes. Turn up heat to high and add wine. Stir and scrape up the bottom of pan. Cook 1 minute. Add chicken broth and the orange sections. Take the orange ends and membranes, squeeze whatever remaining juice remains into the pan and discard. Cook 1 minute. Swirl in the 1 tablespoon of butter. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Reduce the sauce until it becomes thick, coating the back of a spoon. Pour on top of the chops.

Read Full Post »

Baby back ribs with asian orange-ginger glaze

YUM! These are finger-lickin good baby back ribs – the meat is so tender that it falls off the bone as you lift them out of the pan. The sauce is sticky, sweet, tangy, with a little hit of chili – the Asian version of BBQ sauce.

The secret to cooking the very best ribs is “low and slow.” Its so incredibly easy too – this recipe is practically fool-proof. You just have to try this out. The only drawback is that the ribs cook for 4-6 hours, so you have to pick a day when you’ll be home for that long. I guess you could cook these overnight, but I guarantee you that you’ll be dreaming of these ribs all night long as the amazing aroma of the ribs will sneak into your room and seduce you. My friend Lisa shared the low & slow technique with me and I’ve never made ribs any other way since.

My recipe includes a sticky Asian BBQ sauce – however, I’ve also made these ribs with my husband’s favorite store-bought BBQ sauce “KC Masterpiece.” Either way, I know you’ll love these ribs…and I know you’ll never ever order ribs from a restaurant again because yours is going to taste so much better.

If there was only one recipe that I had to choose as a “must try” – this is it!

Baby Back Ribs with Asian Orange-Ginger Glaze

Baby Back Ribs (the quantity is up to you – although these ribs are SO delicious that everyone will want seconds, so budget accordingly! I usually go to my local warehouse store, BJs and purchase the “big momma” pack that includes 3 or 4 whole massive slabs and feeds 8. Plan on 6 ribs or more per person)

garlic salt & pepper

Asian Orange-Ginger Glaze

1 tsp grated ginger (use a microplane rasp grater)

1 Tb minced garlic

1/4 cup minced red onion

1 cup hoisin sauce

1 orange, peel zested with rasp grater & juiced (you should have 1/4 c of juice and about 2 T zest)

1 T mirin

1 T sambal (asian hot chili/garlic paste)

1 T yuzu sauce (you can substitute with lemon juice)

1. Preheat oven to 250. Pat the ribs dry and season both sides liberally with garlic salt and pepper. Place the ribs in a large roasting pan, overlapping is ok. Cover tightly with aluminum foil and place in oven. Roast 4-6 hours. If you are feeding less than 4 people, then check the ribs after 4 hours, they should be done.

2. To make the glaze: Heat a small saucepan over medium heat. Add 2 T canola oil, and when hot, add the red onion. Cook until the onion is soft, about 2-3 minutes. Add the garlic and the ginger. Cook another minute. Add the remaining ingredients, except for the yuzu sauce. Lower the heat to low and cook down the sauce until it thickens and reduces about 6-8 minutes. The sauce should be sticky and thick. Remove from heat and add the yuzu sauce (or lemon juice). You can also add more freshly grated ginger if you like for the extra kick.

3. The ribs are done when they fall off the bone. Trust me, you’ll know. Try picking up a rib and see how the meat just falls off. Place the ribs in a single layer – you may have to use a baking sheet. Brush the Asian Orange-Ginger Glaze on the tops of the ribs. Broil on high until the sauce bubbles and carmelizes, about 3-5 minutes. Keep a watch on the ribs – don’t burn them!

Instead of the Glaze, you could just use your favorite BBQ sauce – the results will be outstanding.

Read Full Post »

Easy Apple Tart

My forte has never been baking desserts, so I always look for easy recipes that I can pull together at the last minute. Going through my stash of recipes that I’ve ripped out over the years from cooking magazines, I came across one from Martha Stewart Everyday Food for Rustic Apple Tart. I think after 3 years of subscribing to that magazine, this was the only recipe that looked interesting enough to rip out. Interesting because it was such a simple recipe that produced a beautiful dessert. Pepperidge Farm Puff Pastry is a staple in my freezer and makes an elegant tart crust with minimal work.

Since this is such a healthy recipe, I just had to top it with some Bourbon Whipped Cream!
Easy Apple Tart serving

Carmelized Apple Tart
1 sheet of Frozen Puff Pastry, thawed for 20 minutes but do not unfold
3 Granny Smith Apples
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg yolk, beaten with 1 t water, for egg wash
2 T unsalted butter, room temperature
2 T apple jelly or apricot jam

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. On a lightly floured surface, roll out pastry sheet (still folded) to an 8 inch by 14 inch rectangle. Trim edges with a sharp paring knife. Transfer to baking sheet, place in freezer.
Peel, core and slice apples ¼” thick, toss in bowl with sugar.
Brush pastry with egg wash, avoiding edges. Use a sharp paring knife to score a ¾” border around the pastry (do not cut all the way through). Place apples inside border, and dot with butter. Bake until puff pastry is golden and apples are tender, 30-35 minutes.

In microwave, heat jelly with 1T of water until melted. Brush apples with glaze. Serve tart warm with Bourbon Whipped Cream

Bourbon Whipped Cream
1 cup heavy cream
2 teaspoons confectioners’ sugar
1 tablespoon bourbon
Beat or whisk the cream, sugar, and bourbon until soft peaks form.

Read Full Post »

tapioca pearls with sweet coconut dessert

Looking back through my blog stats, this is by far the most popular recipe searched. There aren’t a lot of Chinese cookbooks that feature this recipe, I wonder why? Its such a beautiful, exotic dessert.

This is a recipe from my Mom – she used to serve this in the summer time to cool off. Usually its made with honeydew, but the cantelope was on sale, ripe and smelled so fresh! This isn’t a very well-known dessert in Asian American restaurants, but it can be found in dim-sum eateries in Hong Kong as a perfect ending to a meal.

We served this as dessert after our Korean BBQ feast. It was just the right dessert to enjoy to cool us down after all the smoky heat of BBQ.

Tapioca Pearls with Sweet Coconut & Cantelope
2/3 cup Tapioca (tapioca pearls – not the instant stuff! I used a very small size)
1 cup whole milk
2 cups coconut milk (full fat)
3 cups water
1 1/2 cups sugar
Fruit: honeydew or cantelope, diced small

Bring water and sugar to boil. Turn heat down to low, add the milk and stir. Once the mixture is almost back to a boil, turn off the heat. Add the coconut milk and stir. Remove from heat and cool in refrigerator.

While coconut milk mixture is cooling, soak tapioca pearls in cold water for 20 minutes. The pearls will expand a little and turn bright white. Bring 4 cups of water to a boil – and add the tapioca pearls. Stir constantly for 2 minutes. The pearls will turn translucent. Turn off the heat and drain the pearls in a fine sieve. Immediately use cold running water to rinse the pearls and stop the cooking process. Set the pearls aside until ready to serve.

When ready to serve, ladle the coconut milk into each bowl, add a spoonful of tapioca and top with diced fruit. Enjoy!

Some Notes
Don’t boil the coconut milk – it makes it oily. For curries, its fine, because its a hot spicy dish. But for a cool, simple dessert, you need to make sure that the heat is turned off before stirring.

Do not overcook the pearls. If you are using the small sized pearls, 2 minutes is exactly the amount of time you need. If you use larger pearls, cook for a little longer time, maybe 15-30 seconds more, taste it and adjust time.

Don’t add the tapioca or fruit until right before serving. If you add it in and let it sit, the dish will become bitter. Why? I don’t know….my momma said so!

Use full fat coconut milk. I rarely use lite because its just not worth it. Save your calories on something else, but not the coconut milk! I also get my coconut milk at an Asian market. I’ve tried other brands at regular supermarkets, but they never are as full flavored, thick and rich as the Thai brands. The brand that I consistently reach for is “Chaokoh.”

Tapioca pearls come in different sizes – I like using small size pearls, it goes really nicely with finely diced honeydew or cantelope.

Other variations: Use canned lychee or diced mangoes instead. Top the dessert with shaved coconut. Add ginger to the coconut milk mixture (grate the ginger on a rasp or a traditional Japanese ginger grater, squeeze the pulp and only use the juice.
there is nothing more annoying than getting ginger fibers stuck in your teeth!)

Read Full Post »

Bananananna Bread

What do you with 6 over ripe bananas? Why make Banana-nanna Bread of course! This is by far the best Banana Bread I’ve ever had.
Its perfectly moist and is packed with bananas so you get the full flavor of the fruit.

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp kosher salt (or 1/4 tsp table salt)
1/2 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup brown sugar
2 eggs, beaten
2 1/2 cups mashed overripe bananas (about 4 bananas)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease a 9×5 inch loaf pan.

In a large bowl, combine flour, baking soda and salt. In a separate bowl, cream together butter and brown sugar. Stir in eggs and mashed bananas until well blended. Stir banana mixture into flour mixture; stir until well combined. Pour batter into prepared loaf pan.

Bake in preheated oven for 60 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into center of the loaf comes out clean. Let bread cool in pan for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to finish cooling.

I love using my Pampered Chef loaf pan for this. The kids LOVE this bread warm with some butter.

Read Full Post »