Posted in Recipes

Deep-Fried Baby Octopus

Deep-Fried Baby Octopus II 1

In my recent ‘Foodstuff’ post featuring Baby Octopus, I did a quick little dish to try them out in which I deep-fried them whole with a seasoned coating. Today’s recipe is also a deep-fried appetizer style dish but I changed the approach very slightly: The last time, I fried the octopuses whole (except for the heads) and I used a fairly heavily seasoned cornstarch to coat them. This time, I decided to try marinating in order to influence the flavor (and perhaps the texture), and I tried using non-glutinous rice flour rather than cornstarch… Continue reading “Deep-Fried Baby Octopus”

Posted in General, Recipes

Squid ‘Blossoms’

Squid Flowers 1

On a few occasions, I have ordered squid dishes in restaurants that consisted of the tentacles only. Mostly, these are the large type, and often come battered, as separate pieces, before being deep-fried. When I buy very tiny squid (which have been the only sort available up in these parts of late), I like to keep the whole tentacle ‘assembly’ in one piece and deep fry them without batter. The effect, once the central ring with the attached tentacles hits the oil, is to make them curl into shapes that remind me a little of flower blossoms.

Anyway, if you are cleaning tiny squid, or else have purchased them with the whole tentacle section packed separately, you can fry them up in about thirty seconds or so (with or without a light dusting of cornstarch) and serve them piping hot as a lovely little appetizer. You can provide a dip of your choice, if you like, but they are best with nothing more than a quick squeeze of lemon juice.

Posted in Recipes

Recipe: Balinese Chicken

Balinese Chicken 1

Sometime ago, I came across a Balinese recipe employing the technique of cooking chicken in a spiced Coconut Water broth before frying it. I haven’t tried to reproduce the spice blend (which I can’t recall in any event) but I have selected what seems to be an appropriate mix for today’s dish. Naturally, if you try the same technique yourselves you can play around with the flavorings as much as you like…  Continue reading “Recipe: Balinese Chicken”

Posted in Recipes

Fried Udon with Greens and Mushrooms

Fried Udon with Greens 1

Today’s recipe is not wildly exciting from an ingredient standpoint but it does illustrate a useful technique for cooking noodles that works especially well for the lovely thick Japanese variety known as ‘Udon’. Basically, the idea for this type of stir-fry is to do a preliminary frying of the noodles in a good amount of fat at high temperature so that they become slightly toasted on the outside. This gives them a nice crisp, chewy texture that adds a different dimension to the dish than one gets from adding the noodles only at the end. I am using rendered pork fat in this recipe as it really produces a great flavor but you can use just vegetable oil if you wish…  Continue reading “Fried Udon with Greens and Mushrooms”

Posted in Experiments, Recipes

Fire-pot Stock Project Part 3- Fried Poached-Chicken

Fried-Poached Chicken 1

Some time ago, I used some leftover chicken that had been red-cooked by poaching in my Chinese Master Sauce and deep-fried it to very a very delicious result. Since then, I have wanted to try the same technique with a western style poaching medium and my ongoing Firepot Stock seems an ideal choice for this experiment.

My firepot stock is now almost three weeks old and this will be the second use of it as a cooking medium. I have also brought the stock to a boil on several occasions to keep it fresh and, in some of those instances, simmered it with the trimmings of beef, ham and pork from other dishes. The depth of taste is gaining complexity and I think it will add a nice flavor to the chicken as well as derive a little more depth in return… Continue reading “Fire-pot Stock Project Part 3- Fried Poached-Chicken”

Posted in Experiments, Recipes

Fried Potato Patties

Potato Patties 1

I occasionally make ‘Latke‘ style potato pancakes for breakfasts or brunches. They are very nice but they are also a bit of a pain to make. After grating the raw potatoes, they need to be vigorously squeezed to remove excess water, care has to be taken to form them so they aren’t straggly nests of loose shreds, and they can’t be too thick or the middles end up being partially raw. One Saturday, I decided to change the routine a little and use pre-cooked potatoes instead… Continue reading “Fried Potato Patties”

Posted in Experiments, Recipes

Chicken-Fried Steak

Chicken-fried Steak 1

If you have never heard of a ‘Chicken-fried Steak’ before, you may quite likely be as mystified as I was when I came across it for the first time. For the uninitiated, this particular culinary delicacy, originating in the American South, consists of a steak that is battered, or breaded, and then deep-fried (or pan-fried in lots of fat) much the same way as is Southern-fried Chicken.

My first, and thus far only, experience with this dish was at a roadside restaurant in Virginia during a road-trip to Florida my wife and I undertook a year or so before we were married. It was served, as I recall, with some sort of potato (whether mashed or fried I can no longer say) and a veggie of some sort. It was also topped with a creamy, white gravy that is more or less traditional in the south. The steak, I thought was pretty decent, but I really didn’t care for the gravy at all and, for this experiment, I think I will give that particular addition a miss… Continue reading “Chicken-Fried Steak”

Posted in Experiments, Recipes

Salt and Pepper Squid

Salt Pepper Squid 1

When I am at the type of western restaurant that serves deep-fried calamari rings as an appetizer I usually select them because, in such places (with the exception of good Italian restaurants), the rest of the appetizer menu is usually not that interesting. I like deep-fried Calamari most of the time but I also prefer to eat heavily battered deep-fried foods only sparingly, if only as a matter of personal taste rather than for health reasons.

Since I had some frozen Calamari Rings unused after a previous meal, I decided to use them as a deep-fried appetizer, but, rather than using the typical sort of thick batter, I thought I would use a much lighter Asian frying technique along with a seasoning that is especially popular with shrimp… Continue reading “Salt and Pepper Squid”

Posted in Experiments, Recipes

Squid Pakora

Pakoras are an Indian snack consisting of various vegetables, and sometimes meats, mixed with a batter (most commonly made with chick-pea flour) and then deep fried. I have never before seen squid being used in any of my Indian recipe books (at least not for pakoras) and I am departing from tradition by using a combination of wheat and rice flour for this experiment. My creation is actually quite similar to Korean preparations but the spice usage is definitely Indian in spirit and so I am giving them the Indian name… Continue reading “Squid Pakora”