Posted in Recipes

Sichuan Dry-Fried Green Beans

Sichuan Dry-Fried Green Beans 1

When I was a kid, I heartily disliked green-beans and I never really changed my opinion much over the years. I liked them raw, actually, as they taste quite a bit like snap-peas in that state, but, once cooked, especially by boiling, the nice sweetness of the raw product disappeared. Fresh ones were the best, if I had to eat them, but the frozen sort were rarely very good and the canned (which were all we ever got in school dinners) were nothing less than disgusting.

Once I discovered the Sichuan method  of dry-frying beans, however, I found a way where I could genuinely enjoy this vegetable. In this cookery style, the beans are first quickly fried (nowadays mostly by briefly deep-frying) and then they are stir-fried a second time along with various ingredients (commonlya little ground pork, or dried shrimp) and the sort of seasoning such as chili paste, scallion and garlic, that you often find in Sichuan dishes. The taste of the fresh, raw article is preserved and the texture is terrific… Continue reading “Sichuan Dry-Fried Green Beans”

Posted in General, Recipes

Jicama with Broccoli and Bell Pepper

Jicama with Broccoli and Bell Pepper 1

When I first published a ‘Foodstuff’ post on Jicama back in May of 2012, it never occurred to me that I wouldn’t see them again in local stores for nearly five years. Anyway, a batch showed up the other day and, naturally, I grabbed one before they disappear again for who knows how long.

Now you are probably wondering where the Broccoli is in the dish you see above but, if you look closely, you will see that the pale green cubes visible here and there are actually pieces of the stem, rather than florets. The recipe today actually uses three separate cooking techniques, which sounds a bit involved but really isn’t that complicated. The Jicama is first seasoned and roasted, the broccoli is simmered to tenderness in chicken stock, and then the whole is sautéed with nothing else added but a splash of dry sherry… Continue reading “Jicama with Broccoli and Bell Pepper”

Posted in General, Recipes

Shrimp and Vegetable Korma


In Indian cuisine, a Korma (which can be spelled many different ways, including Qorma, Khorma, Kurma, etc.), is a braised dish to which either yoghurt, cream, or coconut milk is added, to yield a smooth and rich finished dish. There are all sorts of variations on the basic theme, and, though the end-result can be quite fiery, in restaurant versions they are typically very mild. Today’s rendition, using shrimp, cauliflower and carrot, falls into that category… Continue reading “Shrimp and Vegetable Korma”

Posted in Experiments, Recipes

Roasted Vegetable Stock

Roast Vegetable Stock 1

Today’srecipet is actually being made as a pre-cursor to another experimental culinary project I have in mind…

I have added leftover roasted vegetables to the stock-pot on many occasions  but I have been curious about the results of building a stock entirely from such ingredients. Today, my plan is to roast a select number of different vegetables and then simmer them with very little seasoning and just plain water as the medium. My object will be to test not just the flavor, but also the color and clarity in a continuing reduction of the resultant broth… Continue reading “Roasted Vegetable Stock”

Posted in Experiments, Recipes

Penne with Shrimp and Roasted Vegetables

I love roasted vegetables. Generally, I make the heavier root vegetables like potatoes, carrots, turnip and parsnips the focus of such dishes but I have been meaning to try roasting asparagus for some time now. Since I had some zucchini and red pepper as well, I thought that a pasta dish was in order. Penne, along with a few shrimp, seemed like an ideal choice… Continue reading “Penne with Shrimp and Roasted Vegetables”

Posted in Experiments

Experiment: Roast Vegetables

I love roasted vegetables. It is an easy way to cook as long as you observe a few simple principles and the results are always tasty and very nutritious (unlike boiling them, for example, where a lot of the goodness gets tossed out with the water). For Easter, this year, I was roasting a leg of Lamb and chose my vegetables and cooking times so as to be able to do them in the oven at the same time as the meat…  Continue reading “Experiment: Roast Vegetables”