After numerous spam attacks, a corrupted backup file, and other annoyances too petty and stupid to mention, I’ve installed a clean version of wordpress here and I’ll restore as much of the archives as I can. Poor Eric, he has the worst admin ever. Luckily, I’m adorable.
I learned two different types of seasoning pastes/marinades (mit gan) from my friend Jia. One is used with beef. That recipe is here. [link to be restored] Here is the mit gan for pork. It’s good for about 1 – 2 pounds of thinly sliced pork. You can grill these pieces of stir fry them. It’s a very versatile marinade and I use it often. This is a double recipe so you can save half for later.
1/4 cup Gochujang (Korean hot bean paste)
1/4 soy sauce (use Korean or Japanese kind, Kikoman works)
1/4 cup mirin (or sake or Korean rice wine)
6 T sugar (use 5 if using mirin)
1 T sesame oil (dark roasted east Asian kind)
copious amount of freshly ground black pepper
1 T toasted sesame seeds
1 T fresh grated ginger
1/4 cup crushed of chopped garlic
1/2 chopped green onion (scallions) white and some green parts
Mix everything together. Use with thinly sliced pork for Tweajibokkum (stir fried pork) or Twaejigogi (grilled pork slices)
This is the vegetarian version of the lasagna recipe I gave Jenn and Phil for their wedding reception.
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 large onion coarsely chopped
8 oz mushrooms (button, or crimini), coarsely chopped
1 oz dried porcini mushrooms, soaked in hot water till soft and roughly chopped, soaking water strained (through a coffee filter) and reserved
5 cloves of garlic chopped together with:
1-2 dried hot peppers
1 1/2 tsp salt
freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup good red wine
2 28oz cans Italian plum tomatoes (san marzano preferred) crushed by hand
Heat oil in a pot on medium heat. When hot add onion. Sauté till soft and translucent. Add fresh mushrooms and cook till wilted. Add porcini and chopped garlic/herb mixture. Stir for a minute or so. Add red wine, breath fumes. Add porcini soaking liquid. Turn up heat and allow liquids to reduce somewhat. Add salt and pepper. Add tomatoes, stir, bring to a simmer, turn down heat to low and let simmer for about half an hour, stirring occasionally. Taste and adjust salt. Makes enough for 2 lasagnas, so you only need half.
Step 2: Eggplant
2 large eggplant
Heat broiler. Peel eggplant and cut into 1/4” slices lengthwise. Brush slices with oil. Broil slices, till brown, about 5 min per side. Lightly salt and stack the slices and cover lightly with foil. Repeat with second batch.
Step 3: Cheese and greens filling
1 1/2 lbs. Fresh greens (spinach, kale, chard etc.) or 2 10 oz packages frozen spinach
1/2 lb ricotta
1/4 cup or more of freshly grated parmesan or pecorino cheese (good stuff)
For fresh greens: Wash greens well in several changes of water to remove all dirt and grit. Blanch greens in boiling salted water (spinach will take only about a minute. Other studier greens should be cooked longer). Remove green and plunge into cold water to stop cooking. Using you hands, squeeze all the water out of the greens. Chop the greens. For frozen greens follow package instructions, then drain and squeeze dry.
In a bowl combine the ricotta, Parmesan, about 1 tsp of salt, freshly ground black pepper, some nutmeg (1/4 tsp freshly grated) and the egg. Mix to combine well, then add the chopped greens and mix well again.
Step 4: Noodles
Cook 1 lb of lasagna noodles in lots of boiling salted water till al dente. Drain and put into cold water. Drain again and spread on towels to dry.
Step 5: Assembly
8 oz fresh mozzarella, chopped or grated.
1/2 of the tomato/mushroom sauce
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
In a Lasagna pan spread a thin layer of sauce. Add one layer of noodles. Make a layer with half the cheese and greens filling. Add a thin layer of sauce and another layer of noodles. For the next layer spread the cooked eggplant and top with a layer of sauce and half the mozzarella. Add another layer of noodles and cover with the remaining cheese and greens mixture. Cover with the final layer of noodles. Add remaining sauce. Top with remaining mozzarella. Bake in the oven, uncovered, for 45-50 minutes, till bubbly and browned on the top. Remove and let sit for 10 minutes before cutting.
My friend Fil has put together an excellent video about the food in DC’s Chinatown. I urge you to watch it. It very short, but an insiteful and facinating look into the cultural treasure that is Chinatown in DC.
Here’s the video, Enjoy! And thanks Fil!
Somebody is buggin me for a dal recipe. This is one I make often.
1 cup of Moong Dal (hulled and split mung beans)
4 cups of water
1/2 tsp Turmeric
2 slices of fresh ginger
11/2 tsp salt (to taste)
1 T fresh lemon juice (to taste)
3 T ghee
1 tsp Kalonji (black onion seeds, black caraway)
2 bay leaves
1 small onion sliced very thin
1 tsp hot pepper powder (to taste)
Carefully pick over the Dal, removing any stems dirt, and stones. Toast the Dal in a wide pan for a few minutes on medium high heat, stirring. Toast until the dal has a roasted smell and turns a few shades darker. Put dal in a pot with the water and bring to a simmer. Skim scum off the top, and then add the turmeric and the ginger. Cover, with lid slightly ajar and simmer on low heat for about an hour and fifteen minutes. Stir occasionally; the dal will start to break apart. Add salt and lemon juice, stir. In a small frying pan heat the ghee over medium high heat. When it is hot add the Kalonji seeds, then add the bay leaves, after a few seconds (when the bay leaves are brown) add the onion and stir till it turns brown and crispy (but don’t burn it, you may need to lower the heat as it browns), then add the hot pepper powder and quickly pour the contents of the frying pan into the dal. Taste and adjust w/ salt and lemon juice. Serve hot w/ rice or bread. This is a Bengali style moong dal (I think).
Wife was out of town this weekend, so I ate some Thai food. Our local Thai grocery sells prepared Thai dishes on Saturday. Some are even homemade, and all are cooked to the Thai palate, as opposed to most Thai restaurants that cook to American tastes. They also have many dishes that never seem to appear on American Thai restaurant menus, mostly Nam Prik. Nam Prik is a super strong tasting sauce that’s served with raw, blanched, or fried vegetables. The most ubiquitous Nam Prik is the venerable Nam Prik Kapi. Nam means water or liquid in Thai. Prik means pepper, (white pepper is Prik Thai, chillies are Prik ee nu, Prik Chee Fah, etc.), and Kapi is fermented shrimp paste. Nam Prik Kapi is a very hot, salty, sour, and pungent condiment. It, or any other Nam Prik is an integral part of a traditional Thai meal.
Another great Kapi dish is Kao Pad Kapi, or Shrimp Paste fried rice. I had that on Saturday. It’s a fine one dish meal served with sweet pork and sliced vegetables. An acquired taste for sure, but great.
My Wife is very allergic to shrimp so Kapi is not used in my kitchen, but I really do like it, especially with lots of chillies.
The quintessential Central Thai meal is probably RICE, Nam Prik Plah Too (Nam Prik Kapi, vegetables, and fried steamed salted mackerel) and Gaeng Som (sour curry).
That’s good stuff.