The name of today’s dish may sound as though it is a classic of French cuisine but, in fact, I made it up to suit the result. It is definitely a Fricassee, being meat cooked, without browning, in a white sauce, and it is similar to other dishes given the appellation ‘Forestiere’ in that it is somewhat rustic and contains mushrooms. The use of pork may not strike one as being especially forest-related (hare, squirrel, or even venison being perhaps more appropriate) but I am going to marinate the pork with wine first (a technique I learned from my father) in order to give it something of the flavor of wild boar. This technique usually uses a strong, full-bodied red wine to achieve the effect but I want to keep the traditional pale color of a Fricassee, so I am using white… Read more
Dried Squid are used quite commonly as a cooking ingredient in the cuisines of China, Korea and the Philippines and are very popular, in various forms, as a snack food, particularly in Japan. The advantages of drying the product are not only for lengthy storage in the absence of refrigeration but, as with most dried foods, the flavor of the fresh article is considerably concentrated and enhanced.
Whole squid, untreated other than by the drying process, can be purchased in a variety of sizes, from over a foot long, to just a few inches or so in length and, once prepared for use, can be utilized in much the same was as fresh squid, albeit with some change in flavor and texture. Generally, good quality dried squid will still have quite a sweetish taste but as it ages it can be a little bitter sometimes so try and choose a product that has a nice, light color and avoid any that is very dark brown or is devoid of aroma… Read more
My wife was a little under the weather and not really up for eating anything substantial so I put together a warming soup full of rich ingredients designed to be nourishing but still relatively light. Good meat stock made with chicken and pork bones forms the base, while the special flavor comes from my Chinese Preserved Pork Belly, tiny Chinese Dried Scallops (Conpoy), plus Ginger and Goji Berry for added goodness… Read more
You will probably recognize the above picture from last week’s Culinary Chinese post when I introduced the character 菜, which can mean vegetable, dish or cuisine. I mentioned, at the end of that post, that today I would teach you how to pronounce the character and I am using this same picture again as it may help you to guess at it yourself…
If I tell you that the second two words of the English name (Bok Choy) correspond to the first two of the three large Chinese characters, can you take a stab at how ‘菜’ might be pronounced? If you guessed ‘Choy’ then you’d be…. CORRECT!!
Well, Sort of… Unfortunately, it’s a little more complicated than that… Read more
This dish is definitely Chinese in Spirit, although the use of a western white wine in the sauce is a bit of a departure from the traditional. I came up with this as a way to use some leftover meat from my Crispy Roast Pork Hock experiment earlier this week. You could use any leftover pork you like but, ideally, you want some with a bit of crunchy rind still attached… Read more
After the ubiquitous Nori, widely used to wrap Sushi rolls, and Kombu, the seaweed base for Dashi, Wakame is probably the third most extensively used seaweeds in Japanese cuisine. It is a frequent addition to soups and its bright, emerald green color when reconstituted makes it an especially attractive, not to mention tasty addition to a variety of salads… Read more
Today’s post is really just a culinary experiment of sorts… A few years back, I tried using pork hocks to see if I could produce the same sort of crackling, or crispy skin, that I really enjoy on a nice, good quality pork roast. The reason I tried pork hocks was because then, as now, they are the only cut that come with the skin attached on any regular basis up here in the far north. Unfortunately, the results were not that great.
Since that time, however, the techniques I featured in my posts on Perfect Roast Pork Crackling and Roast Pork with Crackling II proved very successful and so I thought I would try the hocks again. For this experiment, I am going to use the Asian method I discussed in the second post. I won’t repeat the instructions in their entirety (as you can read them in the original post) but if you read on, I will show you the way I adapted the approach to this somewhat different cut… Read more