grated ginger

Curried Shrimp With Potatoes & Garbanzos

 

Curried Shrimp With Potatoes & Garbanzos

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Today, I like to share a dish with you that I have prepared in its basic version hundreds of times over the years. It is a “a la minute” dish, so it requires no prolonged cooking and can be prepared on short notice (a la minute) and in just a few minutes of prepping and cooking.
The ingredients for the sauce are always the same – clarified butter, curry powder, turmeric powder, cumin, garlic paste, grated ginger, kosher salt, chicken, beef or vegetable stock, and heavy cream.
On the other hand, besides the sauce, anything goes. You can replace the potatoes, chick peas and shrimp with anything your heart desires and your belly craves – any poultry, any seafood, beef, veggies-only to make the dish vegetarian, even potatoes and tomatoes only (one of my favorites), and so forth…..
The sauce is what makes this dish so delicious and unique and I usually make more than the dish actually needs, so I can use the leftover sauce to flavor some rice or pasta, usually for a simple breakfast or a tasty midnight snack 🙂
The ratio of the ingredients for the sauce is also flexible and depends on the main ingredient you use.
While the basic sauce for two portions requires 1/2 cup stock, 1/2 cup heavy cream, 1 pinch of cumin, 1 tblsp curry powder, 1/4 tsp garlic paste, 1/4 tsp grated ginger and kosher salt to taste, I like to use more curry powder for beef and chicken dishes, more  cumin for lamb, more liquid for starchy dishes, less liquid for vegetable variations, etc.
As usual, please let the recipe I give you here serve as a guideline, which you can/should adjust according to your own preferences 🙂
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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Click here for my opinion on “Authentic Recipes”  on  ChefsOpinion
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Click here for  “Easy Does It Curry Sauce ” on  ChefsOpinion
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Curried Shrimp With Potatoes & Garbanzos

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Curried Shrimp With Potatoes & Garbanzos

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Curried Shrimp With Potatoes & Garbanzos

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
To enlarge pictures and read instructions, click on pictures
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Roast Duck – Part Two – “Duck Soup With Rice Sticks And Baby Bok Choy”

Roast Duck – Part Two – “Duck Soup With Rice Sticks And Baby Bok Choy”

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Duck and noodles – what’s not to like about that ? 🙂
Since I prepare roast duck often, duck soup is naturally on the menu just as much. Even just a few bones, skin, scraps, innards and the neck from one duck, added to chicken or vegetable stock and seasoning, is enough to prep a rich, tasty soup. Any veggie, pasta, even rice thrown-in, and you’ll be rewarded with a tasty and economical meal. You can also strain the stock and use it to fix a great congee for breakfast, just add some scallions and fried shallots and voilà, another satisfying quickie. ( Meal, that is ! ) 🙂
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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Click here for  ROAST DUCK – PART ONE – “DUCK WITH DIRTY NOODLES”

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Click here for more  Duck  on  ChefsOpinion
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Click here for more  Soup  on  ChefsOpinion
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Click here for  Congee  on  ChefsOpinion
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Roast Duck – Part Two – “Duck Soup With Rice Sticks And Baby Bok Choy”

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Roast Duck – Part Two – “Duck Soup With Rice Sticks And Baby Bok Choy”

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Roast Duck – Part Two – “Duck Soup With Rice Sticks And Baby Bok Choy”

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Roast Duck – Part Two – “Duck Soup With Rice Sticks And Baby Bok Choy”

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
To enlarge pictures and read instructions, click on pictures
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Best ! Ribs ! Ever !

Best ! Ribs ! Ever !

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Here is a rib recipe that will take your Memorial Day BBQ (or any other BBQ day) to the highest level 🙂
While the marinade consists of a whole bunch of ingredients, there is nothing exotic or unusual about them and most of us who like to cook have these sauces/seasonings already in their cupboard. If not, just buy small amounts so you have no waste.
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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P.S.
If you like to cook the ribs outside on the grill, follow the same procedure as outlined below, but once they are tender from cooking them sealed in the pan on the grill, remove them from the braising pan and cook them on both sides on a very low-heat grill for another 30 minutes or so, until the ribs have nicely caramelized but are not burned 🙂
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Click here for more  Ribs  on  ChefsOpinion
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Best ! Ribs ! Ever !

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Best ! Ribs ! Ever !

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
To enlarge pictures and read instructions, click on pictures
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Ginger And Soy Braised Cornish Hens With Spicy Cucumber Pickles

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Going  shopping at the grocery store involves ever bigger monetary transactions 😦 .
I used to enjoy shopping for food, usually buying way too much food and therefore giving away much of it in order to avoid waste.
Well, those times are nothing but happy memories. Whereas spending $200 a week was usually plenty enough to buy enough perishables, groceries and general household supplies for our family of 3 humans and 3 dogs just a few short years ago, the same amount now hardly covers the basic needs just for myself and Bella.
(Hearing the politicians in power tell the story, America is doing better all the time ???? – I wonder who really still believes this crap ?! )
Real income for the masses has actually decreased during the past decade, while cost of living has increased at an alarming rate, and a large part of the population can’t afford the basics anymore, such as good nutrition, healthcare, proper clothing, proper housing, transport etc. MANY people have to make a choice which essentials they will enjoy and which one’s to forgo, because a combination all of them together is out of their reach.
And now for the good news:
Cornish Hens are still one of the most affordable proteins, at around $ 4.00 a pop in most big city supermarkets 🙂  Even secondary cuts of other proteins usually cost at least the same or more. In this context it is great that most folks are not so familiar with cornish hens, which results in less demand and therefore keeps the price at an affordable level.
So, there you have it: A great quality protein at an affordable price 🙂
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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Click here for more  Cornish Hen  on  ChefsOpinion
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Ginger And Soy Braised Cornish Hens With Cucumber Pickles

Ginger And Soy Braised Cornish Hens With Spicy Cucumber Pickles

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Ginger And Soy Braised Cornish Hens With Cucumber Pickles

Ginger And Soy Braised Cornish Hens With Spicy Cucumber Pickles

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Preparation :
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Shrimp Lo Mein ( 撈麵 )

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Of  all the Chinese, Asian and Chinese/Asian-inspired dishes I prepare at home, the fast and easy to prepare Lo Mein is the one I cook most often. I usually vary the main ingredients according to what’s in my fridge and/or cupboard, but the basis are always Chinese wheat noodles, seasoned with oyster sauce, soy sauce, lemon juice, grated ginger, garlic paste and chili paste. Sometimes I augment the seasoning with hoi sin sauce. As for the other main ingredients, I use vegetables, pork, beef, seafood, poultry or mushrooms, sometimes just one of them, sometimes more than one and sometimes all of them together. In all the years I prepared this dish, I never had one I did not love and I never get tired of it, no matter how often it flies in through my kitchen window 🙂
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Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !
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Shrimp Lo Mein (撈麵)

Shrimp Lo Mein (撈麵)

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Shrimp Lo Mein (撈麵)

Shrimp Lo Mein (撈麵)

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Shrimp Lo Mein (撈麵)

Shrimp Lo Mein (撈麵)

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
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Fiery Midnight Snack – Chilli-Noodles With Seafood And Egg

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Here  is the thing – if yo are able to use anything fresh in preparing food – not frozen, not canned, not otherwise preserved – that’s usually the best way to go (although not always).
But, as I have mentioned before, we are not always so lucky as to have access to fresh, unprocessed food. Then, it is my honest opinion that as long as you use good quality preserved food, you will be able to prepare great dishes – just don’t skimp on the quality of the ingredients.
Having said that, if you have a well stocked larder and freezer, you are ready to prepare a wide variety of wonderful dishes without being a slave to store opening hours and store offerings.
Last night for dinner I shared  a prosciutto sandwich with Bella at around 9.00 pm. Usually I can withstand any temptation of more food after that time of day, but while setting up to watch a great movie (A simple Plan) , hunger struck me with all its nasty temptations,  (Bella of course is always in that state) :-), so I decided to whip up something fierce and satisfying for the both of us.
My larder revealed (among a lot of other goodies) rice noodles  (Bánh phở), canned octopus, canned anchovies and canned mussels. In the freezer I had some leftover homemade  lobster balls  and a bag of  titi shrimp. Together with fresh chilies, scallion and onions as well as garlic paste, grated ginger, chili paste, chili oil and sesame oil, this made for a very fiery, very satisfying midnight snack which, after the end of the movie,  motivated Bella and I to go on a 1,5 hour early morning walk from 2.30 am to 4,00 am.  Life is good !
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Bon Appetit !   Spice-up your Life !
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Chili-Noodles With Seafood And Egg

Chili-Noodles With Seafood And Egg

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Chili-Noodles With Seafood And Egg

Chili-Noodles With Seafood And Egg

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
To enlarge pictures and read instructions, click on pictures
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How to cook rice noodles:
Place rice noodles in a deep bowl. Bring a good amount of water to boil. Pour the boiling water over the rice noodles until they are completely submerged. Stir the noodles to prevent from sticking. Check often to see if they’re cooked through. This will take 1 – 10 minutes, depending on the thickness of the noodles. Once the noodles are tender, drain and rinse with cold water to stop the cooking. Toss them with a bit of  sesame oil  to keep the noodles from sticking to each other if you’re not going to use them right away. If you use the noodles in a stir-fry, under-cook them or they will become mushy. If used for soup, you can cook the noodles straight in the soup.

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The Bollywood

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During  the year I was living in Karachi, Pakistan, a large part of the TV programming besides the national programming were Indian music shows and Indian movies of the “Bollywood” Variety, which I came to appreciate and like, so much so that I actually miss it sometimes. So, in honor of the great “Bollywood” shows and movies, I name this sandwich “The Bollywood” 🙂
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Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !
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naan, tandoori chicken, tomato/cucumber/yogurt salad

naan, tandoori chicken, tomato/cucumber/yogurt salad

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naan, tandoori chicken, tomato/cucumber/yogurt salad

naan, tandoori chicken, tomato/cucumber/yogurt salad

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The Bollywood

The Bollywood

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The Bollywood

The Bollywood

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
To enlarge pictures and read instructions, click on pictures
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Chili/Duck Rice Sticks

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The  other day I roasted a whole duck to have for dinner but when it was almost done a friend called me to invite me for dinner, so I put the whole shamuckus in the fridge for the next day to be used. The following dish was the result and I must say – what an extraordinary satisfying result it was, both visual and taste-wise, which just goes to show (again) that sometimes leftovers are better than the original. (Mind you – not alway’s – but often enough)
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Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !
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Chili/Duck Rice Sticks

Chili/Duck Rice Sticks

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Chili/Duck Rice Sticks

Chili/Duck Rice Sticks

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Preparation :
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Shrimp And Lap Cheong Fried Rice

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Leftover rice –
soup, congee or fried rice ? – that was the question ! 🙂
Well, this time the decision came easy because I also had a few slices of cooked ham and a few small shrimp in my fridge, along with some peppers and fresh eggs. And besides, I’ll have a good fried rice anytime 🙂
This version is very simple and only takes a couple of minutes to prep and execute. Just make sure you use day-old rice – fresh cooked rice is too moist and will not result in good fried rice !
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Bon Appetit !   Live is Good !
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Shrimp And Lap Chea Fried Rice

Shrimp And Lap Cheong Fried Rice

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Shrimp And Lap Chea Fried Rice

Shrimp And Lap Cheong Fried Rice

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
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Spicy Octopus And Rice Noodles In Peanut Sauce

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Yesterday,  on my way home from work , I told myself that under no circumstance will I cook and clean up the kitchen, I was just too tired and a bit under the weather.
So, while driving along university drive and contemplating where to stop for a bite or some take out, evaluating the choices a I checked out the restaurants along the way, I crossed off one after the other, knowing that none of them would be able to satisfy my craving for real, good, tasty food for a decent price. Eventually, as I drove by my favorite Asian Market, I made a quick stop to buy some octopus sashimi. I was not sure at this point what I would prepare with it, but I usually have enough stuff at home to fix a couple of good meals. When I got home, rice noodles, peanut butter, soy sauce, garlic paste, grated ginger, chili oil, sesame oil, red chilies, green peppers and onions were the usual suspects.  Together with the octopus they became a great and perfect dinner.
As usual, more often than not, if I want to eat exactly what I want, I have to prep it myself (and clean up the kitchen afterward 😦  ).
But as always, it was well worth the time and effort and I’ve saved a bunch of good dollars doing it 🙂
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Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !
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Spicy Octopus And Rice Noodles In Peanut Sauce

Spicy Octopus And Rice Noodles In Peanut Sauce

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Spicy Octopus And Rice Noodles In Peanut Sauce

Spicy Octopus And Rice Noodles In Peanut Sauce

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Preparation :
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mix soy sauce, water, peanut butter, sriracha, sesame oil, lime juice, chili oil, simmer for one minute, if too thick, add water, if too thin, add peanut butter

mix soy sauce, water, peanut butter, sriracha, sesame oil, lime juice, chili oil, simmer for one minute, if too thick, add water, if too thin, add peanut butter

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season octopus with kosher salt and chili oil, saute in VERY HOT pan with garlic oil for about 3 seconds, remove from pan, set aside

season octopus with kosher salt and chili oil, saute in VERY HOT pan with garlic oil for about 3 seconds, remove from pan, set aside

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saute onion, green peppers and red chilies in garlic oil

saute onion, green peppers and red chilies in garlic oil

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add rice noodles which you had soaked in warm water for 10 minutes then drained, add a small amount of  soy sauce and water, cook until liquid has evaporated

add rice noodles which were soaked in warm water for 10 minutes, then drained, add a small amount of soy sauce and water, cook until liquid has evaporated

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put noodles to one side of the pan, add some more garlic oil, add whisked eggs, scramble, cook until eggs are dry

put noodles to one side of the pan, add some more garlic oil, add whisked eggs, scramble, cook until eggs are dry

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add peanut sauce, mix well

add peanut sauce, mix well

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stir fry for another minute, check / adjust seasoning

stir fry for another minute, check / adjust seasoning

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plate noodles on serving dish, top with octopus, sprinkle with chives and sesame seeds

plate noodles on serving dish, top with octopus, sprinkle with chives and sesame seeds

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Spicy Octopus And Rice Noodles In Peanut Sauce

Spicy Octopus And Rice Noodles In Peanut Sauce

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Spicy Octopus And Rice Noodles In Peanut Sauce

Spicy Octopus And Rice Noodles In Peanut Sauce

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Spicy Octopus And Rice Noodles In Peanut Sauce

Spicy Octopus And Rice Noodles In Peanut Sauce

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