Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Yorkshire Pudding

With an extended family that now measures 15, including two that are still highchair-aged and two that are I-only-have-three-foods-I-will-eat age, there are very few dishes that everyone will eat happily. The yorkshire pudding last night (with roast beef and potatoes, of course) was loved by adults, kids, and babes-in-arms alike. In fact, the two extra servings went to  nephew, age 8, and niece, age coming-up-on-3, and Bilbo's piece was devoured by nephew, age 16 months.

From Recipes: The Cooking of the British Isles, in the Time Life Books Foods of the World series, 1969.

2 eggs
1/2 t salt
1 c AP flour
1 c milk
2 T roast beef drippings (or 2 T lard)

Blend in a blender, high speed 2 or 3 seconds: eggs, salt, flour, and milk.  Scrape jar, blend again 40 seconds. Refrigerate at least 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 400 F. In a 10 by 15 by 2.5 inch roasting pan, heat the fat over moderate heat until it splutters. Briefly beat the batter again and pour it into the hot fat. Bake in the middle of the oven for 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 375 F, and bake 15 minutes more, or until the pudding rises over the top of the pan and is crisp and brown. With a sharp knife, divide the pudding into portions and serve immediately with roast beef. Toad in the hole is made by cooking the sausage in the pan, rendering its fat, pouring the batter over, and proceeding to bake.

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Reb Eat World Potstickers

My potstickers were pretty darn good too! RAC supplied the cooking-method expertise.

1/2 small head savoy cabbage (~8 oz), finely shredded
salt, pepper
1/2 lb ground pork
~1 T fresh ginger
~2 T shredded carrot
2 scallions, white and green parts, thinly sliced
2 cloves minced garlic
1 T soy sauce
1 t hoisin sauce
2 t sesame oil 
1/2 egg, lightly beaten (I put other 1/2 with the eggs for the fried rice-- you could probably use the whole egg)
12-14 oz package gyoza wrappers

Toss cabbage with ~1 t salt; set over strainer 30 minutes. Then squeeze out the water with all your might, mind, and strength. Add pork, ginger, carrot, scallions, garlic. Whisk together soy sauce, sesame oil, egg, and hoisin sauce. Stir into the pork mix. Season with pepper and salt-- keep in mind that the cabbage was salted and the soy sauce is salty. You may want to test a bit of mix by quickly cooking a little ball in a hot pan. It may not need any more salt, especially since any dipping sauce will probably have soy sauce in it.

Make potstickers by pleating into half moons with what you find to be right amount of filling, about 1/2 T or a touch  more. Moisten one edge to seal, of course. As you make them, set them on a baking sheet and press a little bit to flatten their bellies.

Arrange 1/2 of the potstickers in a NONSTICK skillet over medium heat. Pour in some water to generously cover the bottom of the pan; cover the pan and steam until thoroughly cooked. Drain off all remaining water, and pour in some oil-- enough so that when you tilt and agitate the pan, the bottom is coated with oil and all the pot stickers are sitting on a film of oil. Cook, uncovered, until the bottoms are crispy and brown. Agitate pot stickers during this time so they do not stick. Invert on to plate!

I liked the dipping sauce-- it was quite like what roommate SL fed me-- but others didn't seem as into it. I'll iterate, I suppose, but here it is. It made buckets, by which I mean just a little over a cup, so I'm giving a halved version here. It will still be a lot. Mix:

1 T sambal oeleck 
1/4 c rice wine vinegar
1/4 soy sauce
1/2 t sesame oil
grated ginger
minced scallion

Reb Eat World Fried Rice

This is the scheme I designed for a pretty classic fried rice tonight... it turned out quite well. I researched and compiled some well-reviewed schemes and recipes. Sometimes that doesn't work, but I am pleased this time.

peanut oil
sesame oil
1-2 garlic cloves, grated
1/2 shallot, minced
1 T grated ginger
4 eggs, beaten with a dash of soy sauce, fish sauce, white pepper
4 scallions, white and green parts, minced
8 oz cooked ham, diced
1 c frozen peas and carrots, thawed (I actually used frozen peas and quickly steamed 1/2 c diced carrots)
~4 c cold cooked white rice leftover at least a day (did not measure, was about 4 cups)
1 T soy sauce
mix of: 2 T soy sauce, 1 t fish sauce, 1 t oyster sauce, 1 t hoisin or to taste, total of 3 T

Prepare mise en place. Marinate ham in 1 T soy sauce. Heat pan over high heat for ~5 min. Add peanut oil, 1-2 T or thereabouts; stir fry ginger, garlic, shallot, and half of the minced scallions until the shallots wilt. Add ham, peas and carrots, cook to brown ham a little. Push everything to one side of the pan and nudge it off the heat. Pour the egg into the empty side of the pan; you can let it cook pretty still and then chop it later. When egg is softly cooked, transfer the contents of the pan to a bowl and wipe the pan.

Add 1-2 T peanut oil and ~1 T sesame oil to skillet, heat until shimmering. Add rice; stir fry, breaking up clumps, until you are satisfied with the fry. Return the egg, ham, and vegetable mixture to rice. Stir in the 3 T of mixed sauce. Stir to coat; adjust seasoning if necessary with soy sauce, salt, pepper, or sesame oil (I did not think mine needed adjustment at this point). Serve with leftover minced scallions.