Peanut oil

Cowboy Steak & Fried Onions

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This  evening, only a great steak would do the trick.
Charred on the outside, rare on the inside.
No sides, the steak alone was big enough.
(At least until midnight, when my stomach will surely beckon for a snack) 🙂

Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !
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Cowboy Steak & Fried Onions

Cowboy Steak & Fried Onions

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slice onions into very fine julienne, fry in peanut oil until crispy, remove to absorbent paper, season with salt and cayenne pepper

slice onions into very fine julienne, fry in peanut oil until crispy, remove to absorbent paper, season with salt and cayenne pepper

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season steak with salt and cayenne pepper, saute until done to your preference

season steak with salt and cayenne pepper, saute until done to your preference

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let steak rest in warm place for ten minutes

let steak rest in warm place for ten minutes

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top with freshly grated horseradish

top with freshly grated horseradish

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top with fried onions and sliced scallions

top with fried onions and sliced scallions

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Cowboy Steak & Fried Onions

Cowboy Steak & Fried Onions

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please be so kind and click on the video on the bottom of this page.  Thank you 🙂
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“Easy Does It” # 4 – Garlic Confit Paste

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Dear  Friend’s
Although most of my followers are culinary professionals, there is also a large segment of followers who are just starting to enjoy cooking on a slightly higher than basic level. I have therefore decided to publish, under the moniker “Easy Does It“,  from time to time some very basic recipe variations of dishes which otherwise might seem complicated to some folks. I will break them down to the easiest, most simple instructions, so that those of you who are intimidated by elaborate recipes will be able to prepare these dishes properly, adjusted to your taste and liking, right from the get-go.
Enjoy :-)
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We all know that roasted garlic paste is a wonderful thing, it will enhance the taste of just about everything, except maybe vanilla pudding. But few of us are willing to switch on the oven for one hour just to roast a few cloves of garlic and the chopped garlic in water you can buy at your grocery store just does not do it. So, for the perfect solution to have great, easy to do garlic paste available at all times, try this simple recipe. Once done, it will last in your fridge or freezer for a very long time. You can use it for sauteing, marinades, dressings etc.
If you don’t like olive oil, you can substitute the olive oil with a more neutral-tasting peanut or canola oil, clarified, butter, duck fat, pork or chicken fat. Experiment whats suit’s you best.
Enjoy :-)
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peeled garlic, olive oil, sea salt

peeled garlic, olive oil, sea salt

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season with cayenne pepper, confit very slowly without browning garlic for about one hour

season with cayenne pepper, confit very slowly without browning garlic for about one hour

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blend until smooth

blend until smooth

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Confit Garlic Paste

Confit Garlic Paste

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saute in its own oil

saute in its own fat

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(You don’t have to watch it, just click once)   Thank you 🙂
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Sauted Rib Eye with Mushrooms and Taleggio Ca De Ambros stuffed Twice Baked Potato

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The  steak : EXCELLENT !
The mushrooms : EXCELLENT !
The twice baked potato : OUT OF THIS WORLD !!!
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I have only recently discovered “Taleggio Cheese”, and I feel sorry for myself to have gone 62 years without enjoying this marvel of Italian cheese making. I only know of one shop around here that carries it. It is one of my least favorite stores because it tries to be everything to everybody, which just does not work.  But since a friend steered me to their cheese section, I have gone there at least once a week, just to get my fill of  “Taleggio Ca De Ambros”
For this dinner, I have sauteed the steak in peanut oil, sauteed the mushrooms with diced onions and garlic paste in butter. I baked the potato until cooked through, then I removed the potato flesh from the shell, added kosher salt, sriracha, butter, sliced scallions, garlic paste  and a generous amount of Taleggio. Then I put the mixture for half a minute into the microwave to soften the butter and cheese, mixed it all well and stuffed it back into the potato shell. Baked it in the oven for twenty minutes and – voilà – best twice baked potato ever 🙂

Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !

Sauted Rib Eye with Mushrooms and Taleggio Ca De Ambros stuffed Twice Baked Potato

Sauted Rib Eye with Mushrooms and Taleggio Ca De Ambros stuffed Twice Baked Potato





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Breakfast Of Champions # 26 – ” Shrimp & Bok Choy Congee “

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Here is how it’s supposed to be :

You have a big, substantial breakfast, go to your job and work hart, have a quick, light, healthy lunch, keep on working until it is time to go home, have a light, healthy dinner with a small glass of red wine, go to bed early, sleep at least 8 hours, get up and do it all over again 🙂

Here is what’s really happening :

You have a quick, sugary, unhealthy breakfast, go to your job and work hart, have a quick, unhealthy lunch, keep on working until it is time to go home, have a heavy, calorie and fat-laden dinner, with a bottle or two of red wine, go to bed late, don’t sleep enough, get up and do it all over again 😦
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So, today, after a long and deep sleep, I tried to start the right way, with a healthy, tasty, substantial breakfast.
I will keep you posted how it will develop from here for the rest of the day…………
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Ingredients :

Cooked Fan,    (steamed chines rice)
Seafood stock,   substitute with chicken stock or canned clam juice
Shrimp,   peeled and deveined
Bok choy,   blanched
Garlic,   paste
Garlic,   slivered, fried
Onions,   finely julienned, fried
Ginger,   grated,
Bean sprouts,
Scallions,   coarsely sliced
Peanut oil,
Chili oil,
Sesame oil,
Kosher salt,
Cayenne pepper,

Method :

Simmer rice with in stock, salt and pepper until a porridge like texture is achieved. In the meantime, fry onions and garlic separately until golden. Remove to absorbent paper. Reserve. Saute Shrimp, garlic paste and grated ginger until   fragrant and shrimp about halfway cooked. When congee has reached the desired texture, add the shrimp, bock choy and scallions, simmer until heated through, about one minute. Adjust seasoning if necessary. To plate, drizzle with sesame oil and chili oil, sprinkle with fried onions, fried garlic, bean sprouts and scallions.

More Congee Recipes Here

Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !
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Asian Style Chicken Wings in Oyster Sauce

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Asian Style Chicken Wings

Asian Style Chicken Wings

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This  is one of the dishes I could eat three times a week without getting tired of it anytime soon.
Breakfast, lunch, dinner, snack. Feed me anytime with this stuff and I’ll be happy 🙂
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Ingredient’s :

Chicken wings,
Bok choy,   cut into large pieces
Red peppers,   cut into triangles, keep stems and leaf’s seperate
Dry shiitake mushrooms,   soaked in warm water
Onions, large diced
Garlic,   paste
Ginger, grated
Peanut oil,
Chicken stock,
Sherry wine,
Oyster sauce,
Hoisin sauce,
Soy sauce,
Sesame oil,
Kosher salt,
Cayenne pepper,

Method :

Saute seasoned wings in peanut oil until almost cooked trough. Remove from heat to absorbent paper. Saute onions, peppers, bok choy stems, garlic and ginger until fragrant. Add sauces and sesame oil, wings, shiitake, scallions and bok choy leaves. Mix well, serve with fan.  (chinese steamed rice)

Recipe for  “Fan

Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !

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Pork Ribs & Rice Noodles Soup

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I was  tempted to call this dish  “Kluay Teaw Moo Toon”, but then I remembered that Mirandi of the “High Heel Gourmet is coming by at ChefsOpinion sometimes and how fierce she is about authentic Thai  recipes. (I REALLY don’t want to get her mad 🙂
All jokes aside, this dish is  definitely Thai inspired. Fragrant, light, bright, tasty. I hope that recipes like this will inspire my readers to understand the philosophy of cooking as I see it :
Take a look at good stuff, feel inspired by it, learn from it, do your own spin on it. Just make sure you call it “inspired by” or “in the style of”. But then again, if the shoe fit’s……
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 Kluay Teaw Moo Toon (Variation Of A Thai Pork Spareribs Noodle Soup)

“Kluay Teaw Moo Toon”
( “Variation Of A Thai Pork Spareribs Noodle Soup” )

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Ingredients :

Pork ribs,   blanched  (for a clear stock)
Rice noodles,  soaked
Bok choy,   substitute with other green vegetable if you prefer, I used brocoli
Bean sprouts,   (I prefer the crunch and tasteof raw onion julienne)
Cinnamon stick,
Star anise,
Coriander,   crushed
Garlic paste,
Cilantro stems,   Thais normally use cilantro root but I can’t get it around here
Cilantro leaf’s,   coarsely chopped
Soy sauce,
Sugar,
Kosher salt,
Cayenne pepper,
Onion,   peeled, quartered
Ginger,   grated
Pork stock,  substitute with vegetable stock if you prefer
Peanut oil,

Method :

Saute ribs in peanut oil until lightly browned. Add garlic, ginger , star anis , coriander and onion and saute until fragrant. Add stock and cilantro stems (roots if you can get hold of them) and simmer until ribs are tender but not falling apart, about 2 to 3 hours. Remove ribs and set aside. Adjust seasoning. Strain stock. To serve, place noodles, ribs and vegetables in a serving bowl. Top with boiling hot stock. Sprinkle with cilantro and onion julienne. Serve with soy sauce, chili sauce and fried shallots.
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Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !

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Stir Fried Vegetables, Egg and Walnuts

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Today  I read this article about healthy living. One of the main paths to a healthy life is supposedly to refrain from eating animal protein. But, as you all know, healthy or not, I just love animal protein once in a while. Chicken, pork, lamb,beef, seafood, duck, goose, I love it all.
But, tonight I had a strong craving for rice and vegetables. Since Bella is usually my only dinner guest, I mostly  get to decide on the menu all by myself. So today’s dinner came along that ” healthy path ” .
“Despite” being healthy, it was delicious and a joy to eat. But tomorrow – Steak 🙂

Fan ( Chinese steamed rice ) recipe  HERE
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Stir Fried Vegetables, Egg & Fan

Stir Fried Vegetables, Egg & Walnut

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Ingredient’s :

Broccoli,   floretes, blanched
Bean sprouts,
Red radishes,  quartered,
Shiitake mushrooms,   sliced
Chili’s,  seeded, quartered
Onion,   julienned
Eggs,   hardboiled, Quartered
Walnuts,   candied
Ginger,   grated
Garlic,   paste
Scallions,   sliced
Cilantro,   chopped
Hoi sin sauce,
Soy sauce,
Sesame oil,
Peanut oil,   to saute
Chicken stock,
Corn starch slurry,
Kosher salt,
Cayenne pepper,
Chili oil,
Sesame seeds,   toasted
Fan,

Method :

Saute walnuts in sugar until sugar starts to brown, set aside. Saute onions until translucent, add ginger and garlic, saute until fragrant, Add broccoli, shiitake, radish, scallion and chili’s and saute until heated through. Add chicken stock, soy sauce, hoisin sauce, salt and pepper, bring to a simmer. Add slurry, simmer for a few seconds. Remove from heat, add bean sprouts. Adjust seasoning if necessary. Add eggs. To serve, top with walnuts, sprinkle with cilantro, drizzle with chili oil. Sprinkle fan with toasted sesame seeds.

Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !

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Imperial Fried Rice

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Time to get excited about  fried rice 🙂
No, not the cabbage and soy sauce laden one you get for two bucks at your corner chinese restaurant. No, I am talking about  my treasure chest of a fried rice which has a whole bunch of goodies in it. Each one (shrimp,chicken, lap cheong, ham, eggs, vegetables), fried on it’s own with rice would make a good fried rice, but here the combination of all of this stuff together makes it a truly memorable dish.
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Imperial Fried Rice

Imperial Fried Rice

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Ingredient’s :

Fan  (飯),   day old chinese steamed rice (Recipe Here)
Chicken,   cubed
Shrimp,   peeled, tail on
Ham,   diced
Lap cheong,   fresh, unsmoked
Scallion,   sliced
Bean sprouts,
Red/green bell peppers,   diced
Onions,   diced
Kernel corn,   blanched
Green peas,   blanched
Eggs,   whisked
Garlic,   paste
Ginger,   grated
Kosher salt,
Cayenne pepper,
Sesame oil,
Peanut oil,   to stir fry

Method :

Season protein and vegetables with salt and cayenne pepper. Saute (stir fry) chicken in oil until medium, remove chicken. Saute shrimp, ham and sausage until shrimp are 3/4 cooked, remove. Saute vegetables, ginger and garlic until fragrant, add rice, fry until rice starts to puff a bit. Form a whole in the center, add more peanut oil, add the eggs. Styr fry until the eggs have set, return proteins to the rice and stir fry until rice starts to pop again. Add bean sprouts, season with sesame oil, salt and pepper. To serve, sprinkle with scallions and more bean sprouts.


Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !
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Udon, Seafood & Bok Choy

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As far as I am concerned, all noodles could be udon noodles.
I just love them in any prep variation, be it with seafood, beef,
mushrooms, in a soup, sautéed, stir fried, any which way will do it for me 🙂
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Click here to read all about UDON
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Ingredient’s :

Udon noodles,   fresh, from your Asian market
Mixed seafood,  any type you prefer
Baby bok choy,
Onion,   sliced
Cilantro,   coarsely chopped
Garlic,   paste
Ginger,   grated
Soy sauce,
Sherry,
Sriracha,
Oyster sauce,
Sesame oil,
Chili oil,
Lime juice,
Peanut oil, to saute

Method :

Saute seafood in very hot peanut oil, remove onto absorbent paper. Add onion, garlic and ginger and saute until translucent and fragrant. Add noodles, bok choy, soy sauce, oyster sayce, sriracha and a bit of sherry wine and saute until noodles are heated trough. Remove from heat, add seafood and sesame oil, mix well. To serve, drizzle with lime juice and chili oil, sprinkle with cilantro.

Note:
As you can see from the mis en place picture, I used inexpensive  (but nevertheless good) mixed seafood since this was only a go-between snack. For a more elegant and important meal, use large prawns, scallops, lobster, mussels, etc. However, the taste of the dish and the texture of the noodles should be satisfying either way.

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Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !
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Vietnamese Ginger / Caramel Chicken ( Ga Kho )

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I  remember when, many years ago, I got my first whiff of fermented  fish sauce. It was one of the most disgusting smells I had ever encountered in a kitchen and there was no way I would ever put something this vile into my food !
Forward a few years. Fish sauce  (and it’s cousin,  shrimp paste)  has become a permanent staple in my cup board. I use it for many of my favorite asian dishes, although I still don’t use it as a dipping sauce. In this dish, it is one of the three seasoning pillars . Fish sauce, caramel sauce and ginger play the major part, while garlic, salt and pepper play second fiddle. If you are not used to using fish sauce or shrimp paste, just don’t smell it before you cook it. Once you add it to your food and cook it for a while, it transforms itself into pure magic, giving the final product great flavor and debt.  ( Umami, if you must  🙂
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Ingredient’s :

Chicken,  thigh’s  slashed to the bone
Caramel sauce,  see below *
Pearl onion,  blanched
Chiles,  mixed colors, whole
Onions,  sliced
Cilandro,  coarsely chopped
Black pepper,  fresh ground
Chili flakes,
Fish sauce,
Rice vinegar,
Garlic,  paste
Ginger,  sliced
Kosher salt,
Peanut oil,  to saute

Method :

Season chicken with salt and black pepper and saute until golden brown on both sides. Remove onto absorbent paper. Saute  pearl onions and chilies. Remove to absorbent paper. Saute sliced onions, garlic and ginger until translucent. Add vinegar, caramel, and all seasoning. Add chicken and slowly simmer until chicken is cooked through and sauce has reduced enough to cover the chicken. If the sauce becomes too thick before he chicken is cooked all the way, add a bit of water. If the sauce is too thin when the chicken is done, remove chicken and reduce until desired texture is achieved. At this point, strain the sauce if you like it smooth, otherwise, serve it more rustic with all the bits and pieces still in the sauce. Now, return the chicken, whole chiles and pearl onions. Simmer for another minute while basting the chicken to make sure it is well covered in sauce. To serve, add chicken to plate, cover with remaining sauce, top with chilis, onions, cilantro and lime wedges.
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Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !
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*  Saute sugar until lightly browned. Add water. If you have not done this before – BE VERY CAREFUL ! This splashes easily and burns right throuhg your skin if you are not careful. I suggest to put the pot into the sink and open the waterspout just a bit while keeping your head as far away as possible  🙂 Stir until smooth and all sugar is desolved. You should now have a light brown liquid. If the sugar solidified, don’t worry. Just put it back on low heat, stir frequently and simmer until all solids are liquified.
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