Orange Chicken

Ingredients:

  • For the Marinade:
  • 1 egg white
  • 2 tablespoons dark soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons Shaoxing wine (see note above)
  • 2 tablespoons 80-proof vodka
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3 tablespoons corn starch
  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1/2- to 3/4-inch chunks
  • For the Dry Coating:
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup cornstarch
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

 

Procedure:

For the Marinade: Beat egg whites in a large bowl until broken down and lightly foamy. Add soy sauce, wine, and vodka and whisk to combine. Set aside half of marinade in a small bowl. Add baking soda and corn starch to the large bowl and whisk to combine. Add chicken tp large bowl and turn with fingers to coat thoroughly. Cover with plastic wrap and set aside.

 

For the Dry Coat: Combine flour, corn starch, baking powder, and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a large bowl. Whisk until homogenous. Add reserved marinade and whisk until mixture has coarse, mealy clumps. Set aside.

Working one piece at a time, transfer chicken from marinade to dry coat mixture, tossing in between each addition to coat chicken. When all chicken is added to dry coat, toss with hands, pressing dry mixture onto chicken so it adheres, and making sure that every piece is coated thoroughly.

Lift chicken one piece at a time, shake off excess coating, and carefully lower into hot oil (do not drop it). Once all chicken is added, cook, agitating with long chopsticks or a metal spider, and adjusting flame to maintain a temperature of 325 to 375°F, until chicken is cooked through and very crispy, about 4 minutes. Transfer chicken to a paper towel-lined bowl to drain.

 

Taken from here: http://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/2014/07/the-best-chinese-orange-chicken-recipe.html

Polenta

Ingredients:

1 Cup cornmeal (medium or course ground)

5 Cups water/stock/milk

Salt to taste

 

Procedure:

  1. Bring the liquid over high heat and sprinkle in the cornmeal, stirring constantly with a whisk.
  2. Bring to a boil stirring frequently and let boil until polenta thickens enough to spit.
  3. Bring it down to a simmer and cook for 45-60 min stirring frequently so it doesn’t stick to the bottom and burn. Add salt to taste.
  4. Stir in a couple of pats of butter or olive oil and maybe some parmesan before serving.

Fish batter

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups cups beer (or substitute seltzer water)
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 1/4 cups panko breadcrumbs

Procedure:

In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the beer or seltzer, flour, cornstarch, salt, garlic powder and cayenne pepper. The batter will bubble at first, then settle

Pour the panko breadcrumbs into another bowl. Have an empty plate handy for the breaded fish.
Dip each piece of fish into the batter. When you pull the fish out of the batter, let the excess batter run back into the bowl.

After dipping in the batter, gently roll each piece in panko crumbs to coat. Leaving too much batter on the fish will lead to clumping, so make sure your fish is only lightly coated with batter before breading. Place the breaded fish onto the empty plate.

Coconut Shrimp

from Ray’s Boathouse Cookbook

Ingredients:

2-3 quarts canola oil for frying

Seasoned Flour:

  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt

Batter:

  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 cup flour
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon curry powder

Coating:

  • 2 cups unsweetened flaked coconut (I used sweetened, and was great)
  • 2 cups panko bread crumbs

24 prawns (16-20 per pound), tail on

Procedure:

  1. Set up a deep fryer and heat oil to 300 degrees farenheit.
  2. Set up 3 bowls. In the first bowl, combine four and salt. In the second bowl, combine milk, flour, eggs, salt and curry powder to make a batter. In the third bowl, combine flaked coconut and panko.
  3. Holding the tail, dredge each prawn in the seasoned flour and gently shake off excess. Then, dip prawn in batter. Third, toss prawn in coconut mixture to coat completely and pat gently to press mixture into batter.
  4. Deep-fry immediately until golden, about 30 seconds. Using a slotted spoon, transfer prawns to a plate lined with a papet towel to drain. Serve warm with Sesame Plum Sauce.
  5. Serve with a sweet thai chili sauce. Serves 6-8, as an appetizer.

Crab Cakes with Spicy Shrimp Sauce

Curt and I usually make these over 4th of July after we load up on dungeness crab at Mom and Dad’s house. Everyone loves these things – what’s not to like, really?

Crab Cakes

Ingredients:

1# crab meat chopped
1/2 finely chopped green pepper
1/2 finely chopped red pepper
1 stalks celerey finely chopped
1/2 cup fresh basil finely chopped
1 yellow onion finely chopped
1 3.5 oz box panko breading
3 cloves garlic finely chopped
1 tsp cayenne pepper
2 eggs
coat in corn meal (optional)

 

Directions:

Sweat the onions until soft and clear.
Mix all other ingredients  in a large bowl.
Once the onions have cooled off, mix them in.
Form crab patties and pan fry them in about 1/2 in vegetable oil until golden brown on both sides

 

 

Shrimp Sauce

Ingredients:

2 cups whipping cream
3 Tbl. Chopped basil
1 tso cayenne
2 tsp lemon juice
3 cloves chopped garlic
2 Tbl. Butter
1 Tbl cornstarch dissolved in 1 Tbl water
1 # shrimp

 

Directions:

Saute butter, garlic & basil. Add shrimp & cook. Add rest of ingredients except for starch & simmer. Add starch to thicken..

Pulled Pork

So far, this is the best pulled pork recipe I’ve found. Like a lot of my other favorite recipes, this one comes from Alton Brown

 

Brine:

  • 8 ounces or 3/4 cup molasses
  • 12 ounces pickling salt
  • 2 quarts bottled water
  • 6 to 8 pound Boston butt

Rub:

  • 1 teaspoon whole cumin seed
  • 1 teaspoon whole fennel seed
  • 1 teaspoon whole coriander
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon paprika

Directions

Combine molasses, pickling salt, and water in 6 quart Lexan. Add Boston butt making sure it is completely submerged in brine, cover, and let sit in refrigerator for a minimum of 8 hours. 12 hours is ideal.

Place cumin seed, fennel seed, and coriander in food grinder and grind fine. Transfer to a small mixing bowl and stir in chili powder, onion powder, and paprika.

Remove Boston butt from brine and pat dry. Sift the rub evenly over the shoulder and then pat onto the meat making sure as much of the rub as possible adheres. More rub will adhere to the meat if you are wearing latex gloves during the application.

Preheat smoker to 210 degrees F. Place butt in smoker and cook for 10 to12 hours, maintaining a temperature of 210 degrees F. Begin checking meat for doneness after 10 hours of cooking time. Use fork to check for doneness. Meat is done when it falls apart easily when pulling with a fork. Once done, remove from pot and set aside to rest for at least 1 hour. Pull meat apart with 2 forks and serve as sandwich with coleslaw and dressing as desired.

Oven Braised Asian Short Ribs

These things are so good – and cheap! I found this recipe here and pretty much didn’t change a thing except I’ve done this with the ginormous package of boneless country ribs from Costco and they come out great! Another note – you can make these in the pressure cooker in a fraction of the time. Set it on high and cook for 55 minutes.

Oven-braised Asian Short Ribs
Serves 4

Ingredients:

  • 3-1/2 to 4 pounds bone-in short ribs (or boneless, whatever)
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons canola or olive oil
  • 6 scallions, cut into 2-inch sections [reserve the green tops of one]
  • 2 medium carrots, peeled and sliced
  • 6 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons fresh minced ginger
  • 1/2 cup fresh orange juice
  • 1/4 cup reduced sodium soy sauce
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1/4 cup hoisin sauce
  • 1 tablespoon dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 5 whole star anise

cooked white rice
zest of 1 orange
reserved green onion tops, sliced

Special equipment: Parchment paper, cut to fit just inside the pot

Procedure:

  1. Preheat oven to 350ºF. Trim any excess fat from short ribs, but don’t go crazy—fat equals flavor. Season generously with black pepper, but do not salt. Heat a heavy dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add oil and brown short ribs on all three meaty sides [but not on bone side] for about 8 minutes total. Work in batches if necessary, to avoid overcrowding the pot. Transfer ribs to plate with tongs.
  2. Reduce heat to medium and add scallions, carrots, garlic and ginger to pot. Cook, stirring frequently [you want to sweat the vegetables, not brown them], for about 5 minutes.
  3. Add orange juice, soy sauce, water, rice vinegar, hoisin sauce, brown sugar and crushed red pepper flakes to dutch oven, stirring to combine. Scrape up any browned bits. Return short ribs to dutch oven, arranging in a single layer—it’s okay to crowd them together now. The liquids won’t completely cover the ribs—that’s perfectly fine. Tuck star anise in among ribs, submerging them in the braising liquids.
  4. Place parchment paper over ribs and braising mixture. Cover pot with lid and place in oven on middle rack. Braise until ribs are tender, about 2-1/4 to 2-1/2 hours, turning ribs once about halfway through cooking.
  5. Remove from oven and transfer ribs to platter and tent with foil. [The slablike bones will likely have separated from the meat; you can discard them if you wish, but I prefer the look of the short ribs with the bone, so I reunited them when I plated the ribs.]
  6. Strain braising liquids, pressing with a spoon to get as much of the liquids as possible. Spoon off some of the fat or use a gravy strainer—again, don’t go crazy here. Return braising liquids to dutch oven and boil over medium-high heat to reduce a bit to create a sauce, 5 or so minutes. To serve, mound cooked rice on each plate and spoon sauce over it. Top with a short rib and garnish with orange zest and scallion tops. This last step is key—the zest and scallion tops add a fresh brightness that balances the richness of the meat.

Ciabatta Pizza

This is a ciabatta-type pizza dough. It makes an airy, chewy crust that’s so good! I got the original recipe from this site. This only makes one pizza so I generally double this recipe.

Crust

1 3/4 cups bread flour (250 g to be exact)
1 cup water
1 tsp yeast (1/2 package)
1/4 teaspoon salt

(gluten-free version)

1 3/4 cups Bob’s Red Mill general purpose flour (250 g to be exact)
3/4 cup water
1 tsp yeast (1/2 package)
1/4 teaspoon salt

Yield: 1 pizza

 

Directions

Step 1.

Mix the flour, yeast, salt & water in your stand mixer with the paddle on high speed, it won’t look like it is doing anything for a while. Then after about 5-10 minutes or so it will start to come together. The dough is done as soon as it stop sticking to the sides and is just coming off the bottom. It has the consistency of rubber but is very sticky.

Step 2.

Oil the sides and bottom of a large bowl (spray oil works good). Scoop out the dough into the bowl. Be quick moving it into the bowl because the dough will still be very soft and sticky. Cover with plastic wrap or a damp tea towel and set it in a warm place and let it rise until it triples (about 3 – 4 hours).

Step 3.

Once the dough has tripled, preheat the oven to 500 degrees. Get the dough out and if it’s still really sticky on top, sprinkle a little flour on top so you can pull it out. Put the dough on a floured baking sheet or some parchment paper – it’s still going to be really soft and squishy so you’ll probably need to sprinkle some flour on as you’re working it into a pizza shape.

Step 4.

Sprinkle some olive oil (and maybe some truffle oil!) on top and spread it out all over the top of the dough. Now, put on your toppings! I found that right now my favorite cheeses to use are Provolone, Gruyere, Gouda and Fontina or some mixture of a couple of them.

Step 5.

Bake @ 500 degrees for 12 minutes and enjoy!