Braised Chicken Thighs & Eggs

This recipe is a winner! I know because the extremely picky kid ate everything on her plate!

The recipe –

about 8 thin slices of ginger, cut into thin matchsticks
5 cloves garlic, sliced thinly
about half or whole tablespoon of whole black peppercorns

8 pieces chicken thighs

12 pieces dried shitake mushroom, rehydrated, reserve soaking liquid
100 grams cooked chestnuts, optional
boiled eggs, optional

4 tablespoons light soy sauce
2 tablespoons oyster sauce
1/2 tablespoon sesame oil
2 pieces star anise
2 pieces whole cloves
1 piece cinnamon stick
1 to 2 pieces dried chili

Rinse the chicken thighs and remove the fatty membranes. Pat dry.

Sauté half the garlic, ginger and peppercorns. Add the chicken skin side down. Cook (don’t stir) chicken about 2 to 3 minutes.

Add the mushrooms on top of the chicken, and all the seasonings. Add enough water to just cover the chicken. When the sauce starts to simmer, turn the chicken over and lightly mix. Leave to simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until the chicken is done (don’t overcook). If the liquid evaporates too much, add some hot water. To add more flavor, use the mushroom liquid, by tablespoons.

Don’t forget the chestnust and eggs, if using – add them in the last 5 minutes of cooking. Make sure that the eggs get enough color from the sauce.

Serve immediately and enjoy.

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Salted Egg Prawns

Salted egg yolks are the “IN” thing right now.  salted egg yolk potato chips, waffles, vegetables, chicken, shrimp…

So here is  my take on the shrimp dish.

Let me just say that I have an issue with just using the yolks.  I keep wondering what to do with the salted egg whites!!!  So to avoid wastage or the problem of what to do with the whites, I threw them right into the dish (hence my dish is salted egg shrimp and not salted egg yolk shrimp).

Also, i kind of dislike the “creamy” or “saucy” kind…

20 pieces large shrimp
cornstarch or tapioca starch
sea salt
fresh ground pepper

3 salted eggs, organic preferred*
thumb-sized ginger, sliced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 piece siling pansigang (green chili), sliced**

The first thing to do is to prepare the shrimp/prawn. Cut the heads from the bodies.  Trim the heads and remove the “horn”, as well as any “whiskers” and “feet”.  Set aside in its own bowl.  Sprinkle with a large pinch of sea salt and several turns of pepper grinder.  Mix lightly.

Remove the shell from the bodies.  Make a long slit at the back and remove the “vein”.  Make the slit a bit deep, but not past halfway.  Pat dry.  Place in a bowl.  Sprinkle with a large pinch of sea salt and several turns of pepper grinder.  Mix lightly.  Leave to marinate about 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, heat oil in a deep frying pan, to deep fry the shrimp.

Sprinkle the shrimp heads and shrimp bodies (in their separate bowls still) with  cornstarch or tapioca starch.  Eye-ball it, use just enough that they are coated but not thickly so.  When the oil is very hot, deep fry the shrimp heads and shrimp bodies.  In my smallish wok, it took 3 batches for the shrimp heads to cook and 4 batches for the bodies.  (The shrimp bodies should curl in a “round” shape.)  Drain on paper towels.

While the shrimp is frying, remove the shells from the salted eggs and chop coarsely.  Set aside.

Remove excess oil from the pan, leaving only about 1/2 tablespoon.  Sauté the ginger and garlic.  When fragrant, add the chili (whichever you prefer).  Add the chopped salted eggs.  Stir lightly over low-medium heat until the mixture in foamy.

Return the fried shrimp to the pan and mix lightly.  Season to taste, if desired (in my case, I felt it was not necessary).

Serve immediately.

*the salted eggs found in the supermarkets here are already cooked and ready to eat.  they are usually colored purple, but the organic ones are not colored and are of better quality.

**if a spicier dish is preferred, use the smaller, spicier bird’s eye chili (labuyo), the more, the spicier!

 

Soy Sauce Fried Eggs, v2 and v3

Breakfast is not complete if it doesn’t have an egg, specifically fried.  I guess I got used to it because it was a staple when we were growing up.

Nowadays, hubby is served eggs for breakfast too.  On most days they’re plain fried eggs, or maybe scrambled eggs.  But once in a while, he gets a special treat… like today!

These fried eggs with soy sauce is a childhood favorite.  I had forgotten the original recipe and tried to re-create it a couple of years ago. My first attempt was not bad, but something was missing.

Sometime later I tried again, and it was better.  The resulting dish had more depth –

1 tablespoon light soya sauce
1/2 tablespoon mild vinegar
1/2 tablespoon mild honey
1 tablespoon water
dash of sesame oil

The procedure is uncomplicated — fry some eggs, sunny side up.  Place in serving platter (not a flat or shallow one but not a deep bowl).  Mix the sauce ingredients and heat slightly; pour over the eggs.  My variation here is that I added a “century egg”.

[side note:  I found the cookbook sometime after (which is as old as me – it was published the year I was born!) and  I was happy to discover that my recreation was pretty close.]

Hubby liked it, but when he heard there was honey, he asked if (next time) it was possible to skip it…

Fast forward to “next time”, i.e. now – I reformulated my sauce recipe (procedure is the same) …

1 tablespoon kecap manis (sweet soya sauce)
1/2 tablespoon sinamak (local spicy sap vinegar)
1 tablespoon water
dash of sesame oil
pinch of chili powder

Hubby prefers it this way.  I did explain that the soy sauce I used is a sweet one, but he was ok with it!

Enjoy!!!

 

Bamboo Shoot-Salted Egg X.O.

Hubby and I were at the Chinese grocery store to buy soy sauce.  I chanced upon the lovely bamboo shoots that were displayed.  Not being able to resist, I picked up a 500g pack!

So what did we have for dinner???  Bamboo shoots!!!

My mother once told me that bamboo shoots should always be boiled is lightly salted water… even those that come from a can.  So that’s what I did – I boiled the bamboo shoots after slicing them into pieces.

My next problem was how to cook them.  Usually I stir-fry the shoots with some pork, shrimp. and mushrooms.  Except that I had not of those at the moment.  Upon searching the fridge, I discovered that I had… salted eggs!  And some spices, i.e. XO sauce and dried shallots.

So then I got out 2 pieces of salted eggs and removed the yolks.  The yolks were mashed, while the whites were cubed.

Heat some oil in a wok then put in the mashed yolks.  Cook the yolks until frothy, then add the whites.  Stir fry several seconds, then add a chopped up dried chili (I used dried Thai chili), about a tablespoon of dried shallots and a heaping teaspoon of XO sauce.  Mix around a bit then add the bamboo shoots.  Splash some water into the wok to prevent it from drying out.  Season with salt, to taste, if desired.  Cook a couple of minutes more.  Then it is done!

I was nervous at first that hubby would not like it, since it is an “invented” dish but he said it was very good!

(smile, smile)

4 Cheese Frittata

I have always been a fan of eggs.  Even when it had a bad rep (in the 90s and early  2000s) I always had an egg (sometimes even 2) for breakfast.  In fact, one my fondest memories is of me and my brother J, vying to be first to use the frying pan for breakfast.  We would have 2 eggs each, cooked sunny side up.  But while I liked mine with a soft white and a less runny yolk, my brother liked crispy-edged whites with runny yolks.  In either case, we placed our respective eggs on top of a (huge, as it seemed then) mound of rice after which we heaped tomato ketchup on top and mixed everything into a red, messy, gooey breakfast!

To this day, I still eat an egg with my breakfast.  It is mostly the same soft-edged white with a cooked yolk, with a sprinkling of fresh ground pink salt and black pepper.  Once in a while though, I vary the manner of cooking of the egg.  This is one of my favorite variations… hubby is a fan as well.

1 medium onion, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced

100 grams lean ground pork
1 pinch each sea salt, ground black pepper and Italian spice

4 eggs
2 tablespoons milk
1 pinch each of sea salt, ground pepper and Italian spice

1 medium tomato, cleaned and sliced
a handful of kangkong leaves, cleaned and torn into bits

2 tablespoons grated parmesan
2 slices sandwich cheese (the melty kind)
1/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/4 cup shredded mozzarella

The very thing I do (after preparing all the ingredients) is to preheat the oven, and preheat a 6 or 7-inch cast iron pan.  The one I have is not a frying pan per se, but what is referred to as an eared pan.  Instead of a long handle on one side, the pan has 2 “ears” or handles, much like a casserole.  I use an eared cast iron pan because it is one that fits in my tiny electric oven.

Anyway, as both the oven and pan is heating up, I prepare everything…. mix the spices and the ground pork, then beat the eggs and the spices together…

As soon as the cast iron pan is hot, I sauté the onions and garlic, followed by the ground pork.  When the meat has given up most of its liquid, pour in the beaten eggs.  Stir lightly so that the egg goes underneath.  Scatter the sliced tomatoes and torn leaves, press down slightly.

Sprinkle with the grated parmesan.  Top with the sandwich cheese.  Sprinkle the shredded mozzarella and cheddar cheese on top.

Place the pan in the preheated 375*F oven and bake about 18 minutes, until the egg is fully cooked and the top is lightly browned.

Serve and enjoy hot!

 

“Benedict Muffinbatch”

Reposting a favorite…

Friend T has christened this recipe – Benedict Muffinbatch.

I suppose the inspiration came from it being similar to Eggs Benedict, but that it is radically not… combined with a wonderful play on the name of a favorite British actor playing the character of Sherlock Holmes.

But, yes, it is a variation on the same theme… something on top of an English muffin!

This time, I got inspiration from one of the breakfast items of my favorite coffee and tea cafe… Salmon Scramble… although their version is on a rosemary focaccia.

Toast an English muffin and spread lots of cream cheese over the top. Layer on 2 to 3 pieces of smoked salmon (or as many as you like!) then top with scrambled eggs. Drizzle dill sauce over and sprinkle cayenne pepper on top.

Enjoy! Hubby sure did!

Soy Sauce Fried Eggs

Anyone for a fancy breakfast?

Hubby was.

His favorite breakfast item?  Eggs.

So that’s what he had… fancy eggs…

2 fresh eggs
1 piece century egg, cut up
1 tablespoon good quality light soya sauce
1 tablespoon water (or more, to taste)
1/2 teaspoon sesame oil

Fry the fresh eggs, sunny-side up.  Transfer to a serving dish (not a flat one!).  Top with the chopped century egg.

Add the soy sauce and water to the pan.  Heat until just boiling.  Add sesame oil.  Pour over the eggs.  Serve hot!  Fantastic with rice!

 

 

Breakfast Frittata

I grew up on eggs for breakfast.  All throughout my childhood, I remember the breakfast staple – 1/2 cup of Sanka coffee, 1 soft boiled egg, pandesal or sinangag (garlic fried rice), and sometimes, sausages or hotdogs.  To this day, it is extremely rare that my breakfast (or that of hubby’s) skips the egg.  For my sweetie, however, I make an extra effort to gussy up the eggs.

The fastest and easiest way to make eggs fancy is to make a frittata.  If we happen to have leftovers, I simply use them as the filling.  Otherwise, the combination of onions, potatoes, peppers, and of course, cheese (!) do quite well!

2 xl eggs
1 egg white
2 tablespoons milk
1 medium onion, sliced
1 medium potato, cubed
1 green bell pepper, julienned
120 grams cubed cheese
salt and pepper, to taste

As always, start by sautéing the onion and peppers in a 6-1/2-inch cast iron pan.  Add the cubed potatoes and stir fry a couple of minutes.

Meanwhile, stir the eggs, milk, salt and pepper together until thoroughly combined.  Pour into sautéed vegetables.  Stir lightly.  When the sides are set, scatter the cubed cheese on top then transfer the skillet to a preheated 350*F oven.  Bake 10 to 12 minutes, until the center is cooked through.

Enjoy!

Lyon Frittata

Since I found some book bugs on the shelf the other day, I’d been on a cleaning frenzy!  I haven’t finished even a third of the shelves!

Anyway, as I took books off the shelves, I browsed the pages briefly.  I had to make some hard choices and decide which books needed to stay and which ones to put in the donation box… certainly wasn’t easy!

One of the books I looked at was the Epicurious Cookbook, and the recipe I saw was for Kitchen Sink Frittata.  It got me wanting to make it for breakfast the next day.

I went online to search for the recipe to link to for this entry.  What I found instead was this –

freestyle-frittata
image lifted from Epicurious website

The first variant – Lyon – was perfect!  I had all ingredients in the fridge.  So what did hubby have this morning?  Frittata, of course!  I scaled the recipe to a quarter though.

My solo version –

1 small onion, sliced
1 small zucchini,sliced into thin rounds
1 small red pimiento pepper, diced
2 eggs
2 tablespoons milk
pinch of salt and pepper
1/4 cup mixed shredded cheese
several basil leaves, cut into strips

Sauté the onion and pimiento in a 6-1/2-inch cast iron pan.  Add the zucchini and stir fry a couple of minutes.

Meanwhile, stir the eggs, milk, salt and pepper together until thoroughly combined.  Pour into sautéed vegetables.  Stir lightly.  When the sides are set, transfer the skillet to a preheated 350*F oven.  Bake 10 to 12 minutes, until the center is cooked through.

Sprinkle finishing salt lightly on the top.  Serve hot.

Enjoy!

 

 

Chawan Mushi, Bastardized version

Chawan Mushi is simply a steamed egg custard, Japanese style.  It is similar to the Chinese steamed egg.

Anyway, I based my bastardized version on a recipe I found in this book:

00_chawan-book

And I say bastardized because I skipped a lot ingredients… and (oh the horror) used instant dashi to make the dashi stock!

Here is my bastardized recipe:

1 tablespoon rice wine (sake originally)
1 tablespoon light soy sauce
12 shelled prawns, cleaned
6 fresh shitake mushrooms, sliced

1 tablespoon rice wine (sake originally)
1 tablespoon light soy sauce
600 ml dashi stock
1 teaspoon salt
4 eggs

Marinate the shrimp and mushrooms in soy sauce and rice wine, for about 10 minutes. Drain and set aside.

Meanwhile, break the eggs into a bowl and stir gently (do not create bubbles). Add the rice wine, soy sauce, dashi stock and salt into the eggs.

Divide the shrimp and mushrooms into 4 heatproof bowls. Pour egg mixture over the shrimp and mushrooms. Steam, covered, over medium-low heat for 15 minutes or so. Garnish with sliced leeks.