Conpoy

Spicy Dragon Balls
Spicy Dragon Balls

Spicy Dragon Balls

I would first assure anyone reading this that absolutely NO dragons were harmed, or even painlessly neutered, in order to make this dish. The balls are actually made with ground pork, mixed with Conpoy and minced green chili, and then served with sweet bell peppers in a slightly sweet sauce containing red chili paste.

Also, although this dish may sound like one of those classic Chinese dishes with a hopelessly romantic and poetic story behind the name, it is a creation of my own kitchen and I came up with the name for the simple reason that I couldn’t think of anything better other than a clunky, cumbersome one identifying the ingredients. The fresh green chili in the balls, and the red-paste in the sauce, do, I suppose, suggest the sort of fiery-heat associated with dragons, so… there’s that, at least, I guess….


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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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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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