27th February 2010

    Mushroom Larb

    We heart larb, and we used to make larb gai all the time, but with Lisa being on a veggie kick lately, we introduced this version into the mix. Instead of chicken, I used a mix of various mushrooms we had on hand — shiitake, cremini, and good old white button. It was delicious! One thing to note is that after sauteeing the mushrooms you should try to get as much excess liquid out as you can — you’ll be adding more liquid via lime juice and fish sauce, and you don’t want to end up with a soupy mess. Also, I noticed this version warranted a greater fish sauce to lime juice ratio than when done with chicken.


    Lisa says:

    How about we don’t talk about this one, and just eat it instead?

    Chris says:

    I’m *so* okay with that. Also, “om nom nom nom nom”.

    Mushroom Larb
    1 lb mixed mushrooms (shiitake, cremini, white, etc.), roughly chopped
    1 tbsp roasted rice powder
    1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
    2 green onions, chopped
    2 tbsp chopped shallots
    3 tbsp chopped mint leaves
    1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
    2 tbsp lime juice
    2 tbsp fish sauce
    1 tsp garlic and red chile paste
    cabbage leaves
    cilantro

    Spray a nonstick skillet with oil and heat to medium. Add in the chopped mushrooms and cook until they release their water and start to brown.
    Remove from the heat and put in a strainer to drain excess liquid. Add the mushrooms to a large bowl and stir in the rice powder, cilantro, green onions, shallots, and mint leaves.
    In a separate small bowl, mix together the fish sauce, lime juice, chile paste, and cayenne pepper. Taste for desired levels of spicy/salty/sour.
    Add to bowl with mushrooms, stir, and adjust seasonings.
    Garnish with cilantro sprigs and serve with cabbage leaves to scoop.

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    posted in Appetizers, Salads and Light Soups, Sides, Thai, Vegetarian | 5 Comments

    27th February 2010

    Roasted Root Vegetable Bread Salad, a la Essential Baking Company

    Local, organic bakery The Essential Baking Company has a few cafés around town, and I’ve been enjoying their bread salad on a pretty regular basis, so much so that I decided I had to recreate it at home. I love the mix of roasted yams, beets, and leeks (!), and when tossed with big chunks of crispy-on-the-outside bread, mixed greens, and balsamic vinaigrette, it’s a salad I just can’t say no to. In a wonderful instance of kismet, our CSA box this week provided both the yams and beets for this recipe.


    Lisa says:

    Hey, this looks familiar!

    Chris says:

    Yeah, I think I did pretty good recreating it…

    Lisa says:

    What kind of greens are these?

    Chris says:

    Well, I meant to pick up some mixed baby greens, but accidentally got this mix of mustard greens, kale, and chard…

    Lisa says:

    Whoops…

    Chris says:

    Yeah, but it’s actually fine, I think — it may have been overwhelming if it was all greens, but most of this salad consists of the roasted veggies.

    Lisa says:

    It *is* totally fine; actually, it’s pretty good. I heart kale and chard.

    Chris says:

    I heart these leeks. I may want to just roast those up on a regular basis; maybe add them to mashed potatoes or something — they’re really good.

    Lisa says:

    I love it. Hmmm, I’m going to come up with a list of other dishes to recreate at home!

    Roasted Root Vegetable Bread Salad
    Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
    3-4 medium beets
    2 medium/large yams, peeled and sliced 3/4″ thick
    2 leeks, washed and sliced on a bias into 1/2″ thick pieces
    favorite day-old bread (we used Essential Bakery’s Rosemary Diamante), cut into 1″ cubes
    mixed salad greens
    balsamic vinaigrette

    Preheat the oven to 400F. Arrange oven racks so that both can be used during the roasting process. The beets take the longest, so you should be able to swap in the remaining vegetables to roast while the beets are going.
    Wrap each beet in aluminum foil. Place the beets on a cooking sheet and into the oven, on the lower rack, for 45 minutes to an hour, until a knife pressed into a beet gives little resistance. While the beets are roasting, toss the yams in a bowl with a little olive oil, salt, and pepper. Turn out onto a baking sheet and roast for 20-30 minutes, flipping once, until soft on the inside but still a bit crisp on the outside. Set aside to cool. Toss the leeks with just a little olive oil and turn onto a baking sheet, and roast for about 10 minutes, until soft and just starting to brown. Set aside to cool. When the beets are ready, remove and open the foil packets. When cool enough to handle, peel the outer layer and cut into chunks.
    Meanwhile, toss the bread cubes in a little olive oil (sounding familiar?), place on a baking sheet and bake just until crisp on the outside — you don’t want to make rock-hard croutons.
    Now you can just throw everything, including the salad greens, into a bowl, add enough dressing to your liking, toss until coated, and serve! Season as desired.

    2-3 servings.

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    posted in Salads and Light Soups, Vegetarian | 4 Comments

    23rd February 2010

    Bulgogi-Style Salmon with Bok Choy and Mushrooms

    I was looking for a dish that would go well with our Korean pancakes, and after a quick interwebs search I came across this dish at epicurious. Rather than the usual sirloin, this recipe uses salmon as the lucky recipient of a tasty, spicy marinade made with soy sauce, onions, ginger, sesame oil, and more. It’s served over a bed of baby bok choy and shiitake mushrooms. I only made slight modifications to the recipe — I doubled the marinade and upped the number of mushrooms. The sauce/glaze is deeelicious.


    Lisa says:
    Yum, this is really good!

    Chris says:

    Yeah, I really like how the salmon is cooked.. super tender on the inside. And I think that’s the first time our oven’s been set at 500.

    Lisa says:

    Well mark it in the calendar.

    Chris says:

    … anyway … I loves me that marinade/glaze. It’s good on the veggies and the salmon.

    Lisa says:

    You know, that spicy red sauce from the pancakes is good on my salmon, too.

    Chris says:

    I’m sure that’s good on cardboard. I think we’re going to have to do more Korean recipes soon.

    Bulgogi-Style Salmon with Bok Choy and Mushrooms
    2 large garlic cloves, peeled, divided
    1/3 cup chopped green onions
    1/4 cup soy sauce
    1 tbsp Chinese rice wine or dry Sherry
    1 tsp minced fresh ginger
    2 tsp sugar
    1 tsp Asian sesame oil
    1 tsp chili-garlic sauce
    2 6-oz center-cut skinless salmon fillets
    1 tbsp olive oil
    5-6 baby bok choy, cut crosswise into 1/2-inch-wide strips (about 3 1/2 – 4 cups)
    8 large fresh shiitake mushrooms, stemmed, caps sliced

    Blend 1 garlic clove and next 7 ingredients in mini processor. Arrange salmon in a small glass baking dish. Spoon marinade over, and let marinate 5 minutes.
    Preheat oven to 500°F. Transfer the fish, with some marinade still clinging, to a rimmed baking sheet. Roast the fish until just opaque in center, about 8 minutes. Meanwhile, transfer any remaining marinade to a small saucepan. Bring marinade in saucepan to boil; set aside and reserve for glaze.
    Heat oil in large nonstick skillet over high heat. Add bok choy and mushrooms; using garlic press, press in 1 garlic clove. Stir-fry until mushrooms are tender and bok choy is wilted, about 4 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
    Divide vegetables among two plates, top with the salmon, and brush with the glaze.

    2 Servings

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    posted in Korean | 7 Comments

    23rd February 2010

    Korean Green Bean & Scallion Pancakes

    We made this recipe from Asian Flavors after one of Lisa’s running buddies put the thought of Korean food in our heads. I’d been wanting to make this recipe for a while, and the promise of a new hot sauce to dip them in made it a no-brainer. These pancakes aren’t as fluffy as American pancakes, and you can throw just about anything in them. These feature green onions, green beans, and red bell peppers. This is sure to be a fun recipe to experiment with later.


    Chris says:

    I could eat an entire meal consisting of just these.

    Lisa says:

    We’re almost there already…

    Chris says:

    Well, I had to toss the first one — my pan and oil weren’t nearly hot enought and it turned into a super-oily goo.

    Lisa says:

    Well it looks like you figured it out fine…

    Chris says:

    Yep, I think each successive one was better. By the way, I love that red hot sauce.

    Lisa says:

    I know! I like dipping them in that better than the soy sauce-based one.

    Lisa says:

    I didn’t think it was too spicy at first, but it builds… the more you have, the hotter it gets.

    Chris says:

    In that case, I have to find more stuff to dip into it!

    Korean Green Bean & Scallion Pancakes
    2 oz green beans
    2/3 cup all-purpose flour
    1/2 cup brown rice flour
    1 large egg, beaten
    1 cup cold water
    1 tsp toasted sesame oil
    peanut oil
    4 scallions, sliced into thin strips
    1/2 red bell pepper, cut into strips

    Blanch the green beans in a saucepan of boiling water for about a minute. Drain, cool with cold water, and chop into small pieces.
    In a bowl, mix together the two flours. Make a well in the center, add the egg, and stir into the flours until mixed, gradually adding the cold water. The batter will be runnier than breakfast pancake batter. Stir in the sesame oil and let stand for 30 minutes.
    Heat a small, heavy, non-stick skillet over medium heat, and add peanut oil to coat. Pour in a quarter of the batter, then add a quarter of the vegetables. Cook for 3-4 minutes until set and browned underneath. Flip and cook for 2-3 minutes more. Transfer to a warming platter, and repeat to make a total of four pancakes.
    Cut into squares and serve with the dipping sauces.


    Dipping Sauce #1
    (not pictured)
    1/2 cup Korean Hot Pepper Paste (Gochujang)
    1/3 cup brown sugar
    1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
    1 tbsp of sesame oil
    1 clove of garlic, minced


    Dipping Sauce #2
    (pictured)
    4 tbsp Japanese soy sauce
    1 tbsp rice vinegar
    1/2 tsp ginger puree
    1 tsp sesame paste
    Pinch of sugar
    1 tsp black sesame seeds

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    posted in Appetizers, Asian Flavors, Korean | 1 Comment


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