Gomanchala is one of the historical names for the state of Goa in western India where the popular curry known as a Vindaloo has its roots. Today’s experiment is not exactly a Vindaloo (and I will be looking at the traditional dish in a future post sometime), but it does share some basic features with the traditional preparations. Accordingly, I have decided to call this creation a ‘Gomanchala Curry’ in salute to the common origin… Read more
Well, here it is … my entry for the International ‘Shanghai Chicken’ project proposed by fellow blogger Stefan.
Stefan’s ‘rules’ specified that the dish could be an existing traditional recipe, or one created for this project, but it ‘has to include chicken, chilies of some sort, vegetable greens, and nuts’. My creation conforms to the basic theme but with just a tiny bit of a twist…
Basically, I aimed for a dish that somewhat resembled the one giving rise to the project… I also used cubed chicken but I substituted cashews for pine-nuts and incorporated the chili component into a sweetened tomato base. For the greens, I also deep-fried this particular component but – and this was the major flight of fancy – I looked to the sea for my green vegetable and used a dried seaweed popular in Japanese cuisine known as ‘Wakame’.
Read on if you would like to see a few more details and my verdict on the final product… Read more
No kitchen should be without a decent selection of vinegars for different purposes and, for aficionados of Chinese cuisine, Chinkiang ‘black’ vinegar is a definite must-have. This particular vinegar originates in the city of Zhènjiāng in Jiangsu province but, like ‘Peking Duck’ (as opposed to ‘Beijing Duck’), the name ‘Chinkiang’ reflects and outdated orthography that is kept alive mostly just in the culinary sphere. However one spells it, the city is renowned throughout China for its vinegar and the special black variety carries much the same cachet as Balsamic vinegar currently does in the west… Read more
Today’s experiment is vaguely Indian in spirit, although I’ve not actually seen anything exactly like it in any of my Indian cookery books. While my wife was travelling recently, I cooked some chicken pieces using lemon zest in an Italian style pesto as a marinade and, since I had chicken (and fresh lemon) leftover, I thought I would experiment a little further, this time working with the flavors of the east… Read more
Stefan, over at Stefan’s Gourmet Blog, has proposed a rather interesting little project based on the dish you see pictured above. Clayton, a friend of his from San Francisco, was served this ‘Shanghai Chicken’ in a restaurant there and it sparked a bit of an e-mail exchange which you can read about by following the preceding link…
Anyway, the culmination of the discussion was the proposal that the three of us, Clayton, Stefan and myself, each create a dish inspired by the San Francisco original (subject to certain limits and requirements set by Stefan) and then post our results in blog-space. Even better, Stefan invites any other interested bloggers to participate with creations of their own.
I have told Stefan that my own effort will take between one and two weeks to be ready for publication but I already have a few ideas simmering away on the back-burner (so to speak). It would be great for some others to join in on this little undertaking and I am sure that there are quite a few of my blog-followers who could rise admirably to the challenge.
For those of you who enjoy experimenting with Indian food in your own kitchens, today’s foodstuff feature is a product you will want to have on hand. It is a simple flour, made from what I call ‘Chickpeas’, that is not only gluten-free (which will be a consideration for those sensitive to that particular protein), but also has a very unique flavor. Indeed, there are some Indian culinary delights that just won’t taste right with anything else… Read more
Well, the first day of June did not dawn particularly nicely for me. Here in Iqaluit, most of the snow has gone within the city but I was up in Hall Beach on Court circuit and it was rather grim and nasty for most of the time. Still, I arrived home yesterday and it so happens that I have no further circuit travel until the end of July, nor, for that matter, do I have any trials or other work here in Iqaluit for the next seven weeks. In a sense, I have thus started my summer ‘vacation’ and though that is a bit of a long stretch without much income, the break will be especially nice following a particularly grueling circuit… Read more
I have a done a couple of lamb dumpling posts since I began my blog, notably Boiled Lamb Dumplings and Xian Market Dumplings with Lamb. Since I was planning to make steamed dumplings using some cooked lamb I had leftover in the fridge, I thought I would share the recipe with you as it illustrates not only a different filling mixture from my previous posts, but also another cooking and folding method for the dough… Read more
I have posted a very large number of Chinese dishes here on my blog and I daresay that in about 50 percent of them, I have called for the use of Rice Wine somewhere in the recipe. Simply calling for ‘rice wine’ is a bit like calling for ‘grape wine’ as the range of possible varieties is extensive and the use of one will yield results somewhat different than an other. Sometimes I use one of the Japanese varieties collectively known as ‘Sake’, but, more frequently, I use a specific Chinese sort known as ‘Shaoxing’.
Anybody who has spent much time browsing recipes for Chinese dishes will have come across the name ‘Shaoxing’ at one time or another, either in that form or else in one of the alternate spellings such as ‘Shaoshing’, ‘Shaosing’ or ‘Shao Hsing’. It is frequently listed as an ingredient but, almost as commonly, at least in recipes intended for western readers, Japanese rice wine or even common Sherry are suggested as alternatives. In truth, you can get by very nicely and produce perfectly acceptable results using one these, or other, substitutes where Shaoxing wine is specified, but the genuine article is not expensive, nor particularly hard to find, and it is well worth investigating… Read more
Sautéed mushrooms may seem like a fairly pedestrian recipe for a blog post but, the truth is, I have been served so many poor renditions of this simple side dish that I thought I might share my basic technique for producing a pretty delicious result. The general theme can easily be ‘riffed’ on the inclusion of various herbs or other additions but, for this post, I will keep things fairly straightforward. Tonight, this particular effort will go as a topping for some lovely strip-steaks I bought for supper… Read more