Chocolate Pudding

Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup hot water
  • 3 TB cornstarch
  • 1/3 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/3 cup white sugar
  • 1 tsp butter
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup bittersweet chocolate chips
  • 1 ripe banana
  • 2 cups milk*
  • pinch cinnamon
  • dash cayenne

Directions

  1. dissolve cornstarch in hot water, add to saucepan over medium high heat.
  2. add sugar and cocoa to pan, and stir to dissolve
  3. slowly pour in milk, stirring constantly to avoid lumps
  4. add banana and chocolate chips
  5. use an egg beater or stick blender to smooth out any lumps and airate 
  6. increase heat and stir until barely simmering
  7. remove from heat and add butter, vanilla, cinnamon, and cayenne 
  8. ladle into small bowls, allow to cool slightly, and serve topped with whipped cream

Notes

Takes less time than preparing pudding from a box, and tastes 10,000 better!

For best results, use the highest quality ingredients you can find, especially the cocoa, chocolate chips, and vanilla. 

* I use unsweetened vanilla almond milk, but any kind will do. Adjust sugar accordingly.

Chinese take-out spare ribs

for BBQ I much prefer baby back ribs. But spare ribs work perfectly for the crispy sweet ribs that every Chinese restaurant seems to make the same way. 

I found an easy recipe for making them myself: http://www.copykat.com/2015/04/22/chinese-spare-ribs/

Ingredients

  • 6 spare ribs, separated
  • 2 TB hoisin sauce
  • 2 TB sherry or rice wine
  • 2 TB garlic, minced
  • 1 TB ginger, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp 5 spice powder
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 2 TB soy sauce
  • 2 TB honey
  • 2 TB ketchup

Directions

  1. mix the marinade ingredients in a small bowl, and pour into a ziploc bag with the ribs
  2. make sure the ribs are evenly coated, and marinate in refrigerator several hours or overnight
  3. drain the ribs and roast at 375F for 50 minutes, turning halfway
  4. reserve the marinade, and heat in small saucepan with some cider vinegar, chinese mustard, and duck sauce to create a glaze for the ribs. Bring to a boil and simmer for a few minutes. adjust seasonings to taste, adding more hoison sauce if not sweet enough.
  5. When ribs are done, brush with glaze and return to oven at 350F for 5 minutes each side to set.

  

Chicekn Baguette

I was feeling a bit nostalgic yesterday, and decided to recreate a favourite from grad skool. A dish that could only have been created in Israel, and one that I never outside of one particular cafeteria on campus. Which is a real shame, because it’s incredibly delicious and easy to make.

The premise is simple. A fresh baguette, split in half, slathered with humus and schug, stuffed with stir-fried chicken and vegetables. Messy, a clash of cultures, but wonderful and filling, and cheap. Perfect for a quick meal between classes, a full balanced meal on bread a la Primanti Brothers. 

I have never successfully recreated the exact version they made at the cafeteria, but luckily its rather forgiving, and I’ve come close a few times. Last night I went upscale with the addition of some fancy D’Artagnan sausage on top of the stir-fry. Not absolutely necessary but was a great addition.

Ingredients

  • 1 fresh baguette
  • boneless skinless chicken thighs
  • frying pepper
  • onion
  • zucchini
  • garlic, minced
  • ginger, chopped
  • soy sauce
  • golden sherry or rice wine
  • Israeli style creamy humus (e.g. Sabra)
  • Israeli style green schug (e.g. Sabra)
  • bean sprouts
  • carrot
  • Optional: D’Artagnan rabbit, pork, and ginger sausage

Directions

  1. Cut the chicken into bite size chunks. Marinate with soy sauce, wine, garlic, ginger
  2.  peel and then shred the carrot
  3. julienne the remaining vegetables
  4. stir-fry the chicken until just barely seared all over, then add the vegetables and cook until chicken is done and vegetables soften. season with soy sauce to taste.
  5. Cut open the baguette and slather both sides with humus and schug to taste
  6. top with chicken, include some of the juices to soak into the bread
  7. Optional: top with slices of grilled sausage

Chinese Style Fried Chicken Livers

One of my favourite ways to eat chicken livers is to batter and fry them, Chinese style. 

  • 1/2 lb chicken livers (6 whole livers)
  • 1 TB soy sauce
  • 1 TB rice wine
  • 1 tsp ginger, chopped
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch

Directions

  1. rinse livers and cut in half, trim off any stringy connective tissues. Pat dry and put in bowl.
  2. Season with 5 spice powder, black pepper, cayenne
  3. add soy sauce and wine, sesame oil, garlic and ginger. Stir welll to coat evenly with marinade.
  4. allow to marinate for 30 minutes
  5. in a seperate bowl, mix flour and cornstarch. Add more seasonings to taste.
  6. add beaten egg to livers and stir to coat
  7. sprinkle in flour mixture and stir gently to evenly coat each piece of liver in batter
  8. deep fry for a couple of minutes in hot oil
  9. serve with sriracha or soy sauce and chili oil

Note

The original recipe called for half liver and half gizzards, but I find the gizzards are tough and chewy when cooked like this. The livers are crisp outside and creamy inside. 

Bourbon Butter Peach

Made this last night. just cut the peach into 4ths, cooked in the sauce not grilled separately. used 1 1/4 oz bourbon, 1 oz dark rum, 1/2 oz peach schnapps, 2 TB of butter and 2 TB brown sugar, made plenty of sauce for one peach. Throw the pecans in to get coated with the sauce, then top with whipped cream and shovel into your facehole. Would be good with a scoop of icecream too, but I had none. Poor me.
Original post, with pretty pictures: http://www.fifteenspatulas.com/grilled-peaches-with-bourbon-brown-butter-sauce/

My version: slice a peach into 4 parts. Melt butter in small frying pan, add brown sugar and booze. Stir until melted and brown, then add peach. Cook 1-2 minutes on each side. Add the pecans when you turn the peach slices. Be careful not to allow the alcohol to ignite, it will cook off on its own, no need to flambee down the house.

Use a bigger pan and scale recipe accordingly to serve more than one at a time.

Japanese Milk bread

Thanks to Don for posting this earlier. Made it for dinner, dough in the bread machine, then baked in oven. Used skim milk powder and almond milk instead of whole milk and cream, with a tablespoon of sour cream. Egg White wash on top. Didn’t make the stringy paste stuff either, just mixed 2 TB flour with 1/3 cup hot water before adding the other ingredients.
Original link with pretty pictures: http://food52.com/blog/11323-how-to-make-japanese-milk-bread-at-home 

My version:

add 1/3 cup hot water and 2 TB bread flour to bread machine, stir well to dissolve.

1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk (use less sugar for regular milk or sweetened almond milk)

1/4 cup sourdough starter (optional)

3/4 tsp salt

1/4 cup sugar (this was a bit sweet, could use 1/8 cup)

2 3/4 cup bread flour

1/4 cup skim milk powder

1 TB sour cream

2 TB butter, cut into 8ths if not softened

2 tsp yeast

Process on dough setting, then form into 4 balls and place in greased pan. allow to rise, then bake in preheated 350F oven for about 28-30 minutes.

How mine came out: