Archive for the ‘Asian Flavours’ Category

Pinterest is like having a whole pile of beautiful magazines delivered to your door every day… and you can cut out and keep all the pretty images you want…

I love it!

Usually I don’t follow other people’s ‘food’ pins… my diet is pretty limited these days – if you consider eggs, meat, fish, shellfish, vegetables, fruit, nuts etc limited that is 🙂 It has to be said, judging by what some people ‘pin’ as food – it’s no wonder there is an obesity/diabetes epidemic happening in the world. So, when I saw this recipe I thought…hmmm…


Ignore the proud claim that it is low fat – who cares, right?

It IS sweeter than I would like, so I might tweak it when I make it again, and because we don’t like too much chilli hotness, I only used half the amount of chilli sauce … BUT, I will make it again.

This is the kind of recipe that when the husband comes home, the first thing he says is “Something smells wonderful!”

I used chicken drums – and I didn’t have nearly enough ginger in the dry mix (I ran out), but it was still very, very good. It came together very easily, smelled all sesame scrumptious – a total success, and it satisfied a craving for Chinese-style food (which we haven’t had since I got my celiac diagnosis…). We ate it with steamed cauli and broccoli.

I’m going now to check out some more of this man’s recipes… based on this one – his blog is destined for my ‘favorites’  🙂

Oh, and I think this sauce would be really great on pork slices or ribs too…




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Or, how to disguise that your plum jelly hasn’t set…

1 bottle of very good plum jam (!)
Add: (and these amounts are just a guide – add to your taste)
2 tsp grated fresh ginger
1 small onion – grated
2 tbsp white or balsamic vinegar
3 tsp Chinese 5 spice powder
4 cloves garlic – finely chopped
1 dstp fish sauce
1 dstp tamari (gf)
1 tsp sweet chilli sauce
Lime juice
brown sugar
Mix everything together – add a little water if you want to thin it.
Use as a dip, or as a sauce for pork ribs, bbq chicken, cold meats or cheeses.
Keep in the fridge.
No-one will ever guess that batch of plum jelly was a sloppy mess!

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1 cup onion – roughly chopped
5 spring onions – roughly chopped
5 – 6cm fresh ginger – roughly chopped (peel it if you want)
2 long, red chillies – seeded and chopped (or 1 tbsp mild chilli paste)
2 large handfuls fresh coriander
1 cup blanched slivered almonds
2 tsp sesame oil
2 tsp fish sauce
2 tsp turmeric
Blitz to a coarse paste
Transfer to a frypan and add to cans coconut milk, salt, pepper and the grated rind and juice of 2-3 limes
Great with Fish, chicken or vegies


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Note to Self

Earlier this year I re-organised my spice cupboard… labeling every jar, but one…

… the one at the bottom, on the right-hand side… This afternoon I was looking for the Five-Spice jar… now, I knew this wasn’t it – but, what was it???

Opened it, sniffed it… ACK!

Note to self: Write a label for the jar of Asafoetida…

Asafoetida (Ferula assafoetida), alternative spelling asafetida,(play /æsəˈfɛtɨdə/)[1] (also known as devil’s dungstinking gumasantfood of the godsgiant fennelhing and ting) is the dried latex (gumoleoresin) exuded from the living underground rhizome or tap root of several species of Ferula, which is aperennial herb (1 to 1.5 m high). The species is native to India[2]. Asafoetida has a pungent, unpleasant smell when raw, but in cooked dishes, it delivers a smooth flavor, reminiscent of leeks. (thanks to Wikipedia)

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I have fallen off the wagon.

Having not bought a cooking magazine for months, I found myself in the confectionary aisle at the supermarket, and to distract myself from the Whittaker’s dark peppermint chocolate – I bought the October 2011 delicious.magazine from the display opposite.

I found this recipe, and I had wanted an excuse to use the jar of seriously expensive organic almond butter that somehow found its way into my trolley…

Like sate sauce – but better!
2 tbsp almond butter
1/2 tsp finely grated fresh ginger
2 tbsp gluten-free soy sauce
2 tsp rice vinegar
2 tsp soft brown sugar
1/4 tsp dried chilli flakes
2 tbsp cold  water
Mix everything together in a small bowl. Cook some chicken, serve with the sauce. (We had rice with it, and another dollop of the lovely rocket oil).

I keep saying I don’t like Nigella. But, I read an article about her the other day, written by someone who confessed to not liking her tv persona, but being completely charmed by her in person.

I suspect I am just jealous.

The girl sure can cook. This recipe is absolutely delicious. We licked our plates – oh, and I think almond butter might be my new favourite thing.

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2 large garlic cloves – finely chopped
1 tbsp fresh ginger – finely chopped
2 large spring onions – thinly sliced
2 tsp cumin seeds
2 tsp sweet paprika
1 tsp cardamom seeds – I had pods, so I crushed them to release the seeds
2 small red chillies – deseeded and finely chopped
juice of 1 large lime
1/4 cup fresh coriander – finely chopped
1 kaffir lime leaf – finely chopped
250ml (1 cup) coconut cream
4 skinless salmon fillets – about 150g each

Combine all the ingredients in a snaplock bag. Put the salmon into the bag, squeeze out all the air, then squish the bag around to coat the fish thoroughly. Marinate about 2 hours.

Cut a piece of foil large enough to hold a piece of fish and put a fillet in the centre. Top with a quarter of the marinade. Seal the parcel and bake 15 minutes in a 200c oven. Or do as I did – put the salmon (I also put some prawns in with it) into a dish that will take everything in a snug fit, put the marinade in too – cover the lot with a lid, or some foil – then bake it)

Serve with extra coriander sprinkled on top. Have some rice, some pickle or chutney and a lime wedge. We had it on coleslaw, with avocado… and made little piggy noises as we ate…

You would think, since this is another dish cooked in coconut cream with spices, that it would be similar to the chicken dish we had the other night… but, no – this is quite different.

I can imagine this being made with any kind of fish – and even with chicken. It was fragrant and delicious.

On a totally unrelated, but really lovely note – I had an email from our friend Kyoko, who lived with us while she studied at the local university. Kyoko and our late cat Bella were great friends (Bella was aloof with almost everyone else, but she just love Kyo).  Kyo read that I had lost my photos of Bella and will email them to me (and of Yoshi too) once she is able. I’m so thrilled and promise to back them up AND put them on Picasa. XXX Thank you Kyo.

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I’m a gravy kind of girl. You either are or you aren’t. I really miss gravy – those lovely dark bits that remain in the pan after you’ve roasted something, thickened with a roux and made into a silky smooth sauce with stock or vegetable water…  There are plenty of things you can do to make up for not being able to use flour. This chicken rubbed with Asian spices and lime juice for flavour is served with a creamy, spiced sauce… you don’t miss the flour at all.

1 Tbsp oil
2 tsp Chinese five-spice powder
grated zest and juice of 1 lime (if you’re using a whole chicken, use another lime – cut in half – and stuff it into the cavity – along with some slices of fresh ginger, 2 lemongrass stalks and 2 kaffir lime leaves – I just chopped all these small and sprinkled them over the top of my chicken pieces)
1/2 tsp salt
Rub the spice mix over the chicken
Roast until done.
Take the chicken out of the pan and leave it to rest while you make the gravy.
Into the pan, stir
200g coconut cream
2oo ml chicken stock
1 tbsp Thai red curry paste
Stir to get any of the lovely sticky bits from the bottom of the pan and cook the gravy over medium-high heat until hot.
Serve the gravy over the chicken.

 We had this with cauliflower and broccoli. We had some left-over potatoes from yesterday, so I cut them up and put them in with the chicken to re-heat. The gravy is creamy, lightly spiced and very moreish. Perfect.

Rice would be good too… so would Asian greens…


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