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Pickled Assorted Vegetables 涼拌什錦泡菜

Pickled Assorted Vegetables Recipe 涼拌什錦泡菜 

Ingredients:

1 chayote
1 kohlrabi
1/2 stick carrot
5 Persian cucumbers
1/4 stick daikon
3 gloves garlic– chopped
1-2 red hot peppers– chopped
sushi vinegar
sugar
water

Method:

  1. Prepare chayote: Peel off the skin and remove the core. Rinse to remove the sliminess of the chayote. Cut into small bite size. Put in a bowl and sprinkle some salt (no more than 1/4 tsp). Rub salt into chayote with your fingers. Set aside for it to draw out the liquid. Rinse with water , then squeeze out as much water as possible. Pat dry.
  2. Prepare kohlrabi: Remove the outer skin of kohlrabi, then cut into small thin size. Put in a bowl and sprinkle some salt (no more than 1/4 tsp). Rub salt into kohlrabi with your fingers. Set aside for it to draw out the liquid. Rinse with water , then squeeze out as much water as possible. Pat dry.
  3. Prepare carrot: Peel off the skin and remove both ends. Cut into small bite size. Put in a bowl and sprinkle some salt (no more than 1/4 tsp). Rub salt into carrot with your fingers. Set aside for it to draw out the liquid. Rinse with water , then squeeze out as much water as possible. Pat dry.
  4. Prepare cucumbers: Remove both ends and the core of cucumbers. Cut into small bite size. Put in a bowl and sprinkle some salt (no more than 1/4 tsp). Rub salt into cucumbers with your fingers. Set aside for it to draw out the liquid. Rinse with water , then squeeze out as much water as possible. Pat dry.
  5. Prepare daikon: Peel off the skin and remove both ends. Cut into small bite size. Put in a bowl and sprinkle some salt (no more than 1/4 tsp). Rub salt into daikon with your fingers. Set aside for it to draw out the liquid. Rinse with water , then squeeze out as much water as possible. Pat dry.
  6. Combine all vegetables, garlic and peppers in a large bowl (non metal, non plastic). Add enough sushi vinegar to cover half of the vegetables. Then add enough water to barely cover the top of vegetables. Add sugar to taste. Stir with a spoon until sugar dissolves. Cover and let it sit in the fridge for at least 1 day for the marinade to soak in. Stir the vegetables the next day and continue chilling in the fridge. Pickled vegetables last at least 2 weeks if kept well in fridge. Be sure to use a clean dry spoon to take out a portion for consumption.

Regina’s Note:

  • How to pick kohlrabi: Pick young kohlrabi that is more greenish rather than pale color, preferably with a little green leaves on the top. Old kohlrabi will have tough, chewy fibers/roots throughout the vegetables that make it impossible to use for making dishes.
  • How to pick cucumbers: Always pick cucumbers that are firm. There should not be any wrinkles on the skin or else it’s not fresh.
  • How to pick daikon: Pick daikon with smooth skin. Check the cut stems– they should look freshly cut. Put daikon in your hand and it should feel heavy to you. If it doesn’t feel heavy the daikon might be old or hollow inside.

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My MIL is visiting us during spring break. So when I went shopping at Costco last week I got a tub of hand picked Dungeness crab meat; thinking to make something crabby because she likes crab. Then I remember the famous crab dip at Horatio’s– it was so rich, creamy and delicious that I can never forget. So I decided to replicate the flavor.

This is my second time making crab dip. My first crab dip few years back, although wowed by my guests, was not exactly what I was expecting– it just didn’t taste like Horatio’s at all. People who have been to Horatio’s try to replicate the flavor but none has success. I thought I might have most ingredients, and here comes my experiment…

The verdict: Compared to my first trial which I used pepper jack cheese, this time around the dip tastes a lot better and more like Horatio’s version– creamy and rich, and not tangy. I didn’t use marinated artichoke hearts though (Horatio’s got artichoke hearts in the dip). I sliced some torta sandwich rolls from Costco and made some garlic crostini to serve the dip. My MIL likes it very much. She even asks for the recipe. This recipe is a keeper until I crack down Horatio’s secret ingredients (especially the cheese they use…):-)

Dungeness Crab Dip

Dungeness Crab Dip

Crab Dip Recipe (please note this is for a large portion enough for a party appetizer, but you can scale down for smaller serving)

Ingredients:
1/4 medium onion– chopped
3 cloves garlic– chopped
4 tbsp unsalted butter
1 lb Dungeness crab lump meat, free of shells
2 cup shredded Italian five cheese mix, plus more for sprinkling
6 oz champagne aged Cheddar Cheese– grated– see note below
5 tbsp grated Parmesan cheese
6 tbsp mayonnaise
3 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper

garlic crostini– recipe follows

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. In a big sauce pan, melt butter and saute onion and garlic over medium heat until aromatic. Set aside to cool.
  2. Add remaining ingredients to the sauce pan, mix gently to combine. Transfer to a oven safe bowl or deep dish container (I used Pyrex glass casserole). Sprinkle more five cheese mix on the top. Bake for 30 minutes. Then turn to broiler for 2-3 minutes to brown the top (always keep an eye on the food when you are broiling, don’t turn away and do something else). Serve hot with garlic crostini.

Garlic Crostini Recipe:

Ingredients:
4 torta sandwich rolls (I bought from Costco)– slice into 1/2 inch thin
extra virgin olive oil
salt
freshly ground black pepper
1 clove garlic

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Arrange slice breads on a large baking pan, drizzle with olive oil, then salt and pepper. Turn the breads over and do the same. Bake 3-4 minutes on each side of the bread, or until light golden brown.
  2. Remove from the oven, and rub garlic on each side of crostini.

Regina’s Note:

  • Champgne aged Cheddar cheese: I used this cheese because I just happened to have it (got it from Costco), but regular aged cheddar cheese should be fine too. I won’t go for sharp Cheddar because the flavor might be too strong for the dip.

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Stewed Beef Shank 卤牛腱

Stewed Beef Shank 卤牛腱 with stewed eggs 卤蛋

 

Stewed Beef Shank 卤牛腱 Recipe

Ingredients:

1 beef shank– cut in half lengthwise

Stew Sauce Base:
3 inch ginger– crushed
4 cloves garlic– crushed
3 stalks green onion
3 star anise 八角
1 tsp five spice powder
1 stick cinnamon bark 桂皮
1/2 stick rock sugar
1 cardamon 草果
1 tbsp salt
4 tbsp cooking wine
1 tsp chicken bouillon powder
1/2 cup soy sauce
3 tbsp dark caramel sauce 黑酱油
6 cups water
2 dashes ground white pepper

Method:

  1. Put all ingredients in stew sauce base into a deep pot. Cover and boil on high heat for 15 minutes for the flavor to come out.
  2. In a separate pot blanch beef shank briefly. Rinse and put into the stew sauce. Cover and boil beef shank on high heat for 15 minutes. Reduce heat to medium low, cover and simmer for 1–1.5 hours until the meat is slightly tender. Turn the meat several times while simmering. Turn off heat, cover and continue let the meat stay in the sauce to soak up the flavor.
  3. Cool completely, chill if necessary, before thin slicing the meat or it may fall apart.

Regina’s Note:

  • The cooking time depends on the size of the beef shank. Undercooked beef shank produces tough meat, but overcooked beef shank falls crumbly apart even when you thin slice after chilling. Use a chopstick or fork to check the doneness of the meat– it should feel slight tender as the chopstick/fork inserted into the center of the meat.
  • This stew sauce base can be kept in the freezer and reuse. Just strain and remove grease before freezing. When reuse the sauce, add a little more of each ingredients to bring out the flavor again.
  • The stew sauce is very flavorful especially after stew the meat, and thus great for stewing soy sauce eggs, tofu, tendon etc. It is best to stew each kind of food separately as each requires a different stewing time. Also, add in a little more ginger, green onion, cooking wine etc before adding each kind of food, sort to bring out the flavor.
  • For stewed kelp/seaweed 卤海带, because of its natural fishy scent, requires little more cooking wine to neutralize the flavor. Make kelp the last ingredient to stew if you’re not keeping the stew sauce, or take some sauce out and stew kelp separately if you’re planning to reuse the stew sauce. Also, since kelp cannot be stewed too long, so be sure the sauce is slightly thick before adding kelp (I would say stew kelp on high heat until it boils then simmer on medium low heat for 20-30 minutes, depending the thickness of the kelp. Again, use chopstick or fork to check for doneness).

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