Kimchi with Conpoy and Dried Shrimp
Kimchi with Conpoy and Dried Shrimp

Many recipes for Kimchi call for fermenting cabbage, or other vegetables, with some type of seafood in order to add an extra umami dimension. The seafood typically used is often Korean brined-shrimp, but oysters, octopus, and even fish guts are sometimes used. Here, in a twist on the more traditional blends, Conpoy and Dried Shrimp being added as the umami boosters.

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A selection of dried shrimp
A selection of dried shrimp

Do you use dried shrimp in your own kitchen? If not, then you really should think about adding this very versatile foodstuff to your pantry. Like mushrooms, sun-dried tomatoes, or Conpoy, the drying process highly concentrates the flavors of shrimp and produces a tremendous umami-punch that makes them very useful indeed. If you would like to learn how to prepare and use dried shrimp in recipes, along with tips for buying and storing them, then read on…

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Eggs with Dried Scallops
Eggs with Dried Scallops

Eggs with Dried Scallops, also known as Conpoy, take the very simple dish of basic scrambled eggs to a new level. In China, and across south-east Asia, other ingredients are often included to eggs to add an umami boost. Dried mushrooms or cured ham both work very well, and fish sauce is sometimes used. Here, conpoy, are added to the same effect. To offset the natural sweetness of the dried scallop, a little chili paste is included as well.

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Bok Choy with Dried Scallops
Bok Choy with Dried Scallops

Bok Choy with Dried Scallops is a good illustration of how a simple basic ingredient like can turn an otherwise plain vegetable dish into something special. Bok Choy is the vegetable of choice in this recipe, but the basic idea works well with almost any other greens.

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A package of Dried Scallops (Conpoy)
A package of Dried Scallops (Conpoy)

Dried Scallops are very often used in Chinese cookery, and it is a bit of a shame that relatively few western cooks know how to prepare and use them as they pack a unique flavor punch that is truly exquisite…

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A dish of Octopus Stew
A dish of Octopus Stew

You can find many different versions of Octopus Stew all around southern Europe, but there is a remarkable commonality in those dishes hailing from Greece, Malta, Spain, Italy and Portugal. The basic theme involves octopus stewed in a tomato base, generally with wine, along with herbs favored in the region. Olives, and sometimes capers, are frequent additions, and many incorporate potatoes. The following preparation is an amalgam of all of these…

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Provençal Octopus Brochettes served Tapas-style
Provençal Octopus Brochettes served Tapas-style

Provençal Octopus Brochettes are skewers of octopus tentacle sections that have been marinated in herbs and lemon juice, then grilled until just beginning to char. They make a delicious first-course appetizer, or one of a series of offerings in a Tapas meal.

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A Tapa of Mediterranean Octopus
A Tapa of Mediterranean Octopus

Mediterranean Octopus is a Tapas style appetizer that reflects both Spanish and Italian influences. It features octopus tentacles that are poached in a flavored broth until almost tender, finished on the grill, and then served in a reduction of the poaching medium.

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Grilled Octopus Greek Style
Grilled Octopus Greek Style

This Grilled Octopus Greek-Style Recipe features tentacles that have first been marinated in the Grecian style using olive oil, lemon juice, garlic and oregano. The finished result, served piping hot from the grill, makes for a terrific Meze type appetizer.

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A Fresh Octopus
A 2 Kg Octopus

Got an octopus to use and not sure what to do? Not to worry… Follow along here and learn how to prepare octopus by for use in all sorts of dishes.

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