ten-minute stir fry

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ingredients: garlic, sesame oil, soy sauce, cooked rice, brown mushrooms, spinach, eggplant, eggs, sesame seeds, fresh basil, ginger, sea salt, and black pepper.

chop up the garlic and sauté in sesame oil. crack the eggs into the pan (season with salt and pepper) and chop up the mushrooms and eggplant while the garlic and eggs are cooking in the pan. add the mushrooms and eggplant into the pan, then add the cooked riced, and cover in soy sauce (and a little more sesame oil). chop up some ginger and fresh basil, and add into the pan. add the spinach in and watch it shrink down. season with salt and pepper, take off the heat, sprinkle with sesame seeds, and serve.

i’m pretty sure this post took me longer to write up than making this dish for dinner tonight.

authentic thai food: gai pad krapow, moo ping, and khao neaw (sticky rice)

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trying to recreate authentic-tasting food at home can always be a bit of a challenge and it doesn’t always work out (aka this). but when it does work out… oh man, it is just incredible and so satisfying. in my experience, the key to recreating the authenticity of food is having the right recipe, the right ingredients, and the ability to improvise. luckily, we had all those things on the night that gary, yukiko, allan, and i decided to make a few thai dishes.

gai pad krapow

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the pictures and text from gary’s awesome thai cookbook says it all.

moo ping

yukiko found this recipe online.

ingredients: pork, garlic, cilantro, pepper, sugar, fish sauce, soy sauce, oyster sauce, coconut milk and skewers.

apparently the measurements for the sauce are important, so here they are:

  • 3 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 2 tablespoons dark soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons oyster sauce

guesstimate everything else.

mix all the ingredients together (minus the coconut milk) and let it sit. the original recipe says you have to marinate it for 3-4 hours, but we didn’t read that until we were already in the process of making it (oops); it did get to sit there for a little bit since gary had to run home to grab his fish sauce. thread it onto the skewers, brush the coconut milk onto it, and grill.

khao neaw (sticky rice)

surprisingly easy to make. yukiko found this recipe, we used the microwave method, and it actually turned out like legit sticky rice!

“Soak the sticky rice for 10 minutes in warm water in a bowl. Soaking the rice is very important. I have tried this method without soaking the rice first and it was disastrous. The rice was undercooked and inedible. The water level should be just above the rice, which comes out to be 1 cup of rice and a little over 1 cup of water (about 10% more). I recommend using a non-plastic container because you may melt the plastic in the microwave. Cover the bowl with a dish and cook in microwave for at full power 3 minutes. Stir the ricearound to move the rice from the top to the bottom. You will notice that some of the rice is translucent or cooked and some still has white center or the uncooked portion.

Heat it up again for another 3 minutes. Check and see if it is done. When cooked, all the rice should be translucent. If it needs more cooking, I recommend heating up and checking every 3 minutes or so. How long it takes to cook really depends on your microwave.” – http://www.thaitable.com/thai/recipe/sticky-rice

we also found that the reheated sticky rice from the night before actually turned out better than freshly made sticky rice.

combine all of the above, eat on an incredible rooftop patio, serve with bottles of heineken, and pretend you’re in bangkok.

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pan fried eggplant with pork via remcooks

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original recipe found here. in making this dish, a few modifications were made: i didn’t know what a filipino eggplant was exactly, so i just grabbed the first random eggplant i saw at the grocery store; black pepper was used instead of white pepper, no cornstarch was used, green onion was used instead of garlic chives, and white sugar was used instead of brown sugar. actually, i don’t even remember if we used sugar, since yukiko and i made this quite some time ago.

ingredients (that were used): eggplant, ground pork, white onion (sliced), garlic (minced), soy sauce, sesame oil, green onion (sliced), sugar (optional), and cooking oil.

slice the eggplant and set aside in a bowl. mix the ground pork in another bowl with the sesame oil, pepper, and soy sauce. fry the eggplant in a pan, until it looks grilled. place the eggplant back in its bowl and set it aside. sautée the onions and garlic in a pan, and add the meat mixture in. once the meat is pretty cooked, add the eggplant back in the pan. add more soy sauce in, (potentially) add the sugar in, and throw the chives in there too. serve with red wine and devour on an amazing apartment rooftop patio, while catching up with a good friend.

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how to cook dinner while you’re at work and have it ready to eat when you get home

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i grabbed this recipe from my friend leah’s blog, and decided to give it a go.

ingredients: beef or pork short ribs (the original recipe called for beef, but costco only had pork, so that’s what i used), garlic, green onions, soy sauce, rice vinegar, cooking sake or cooking rice wine (which is apparently the same thing? and what i used because i couldn’t find cooking sake), crushed red chili flakes, sesame oil, and brown or white sugar (i probably would have used brown if i had it, but i didn’t, so i substituted it with white sugar, which still turned out fine).

i chopped up the garlic, meat, and green onions the night before so it would all be ready to place in the crockpot at 7:30 am this morning, as soon as i woke up. i diluted the sugar in the rice vinegar and cooking rice wine by mixing it around until it was all blended in. i placed the ribs in and covered them in (a lot of) soy sauce, an equal amount of rice vinegar and cooking rice wine (which i used way less of compared to the soy sauce), the garlic, green onions, and crushed red pepper flakes. i set the crockpot to low, and got ready for work.

nine hours later, i returned home from work and dinner was ready! the ribs were perfectly tender, just falling off the bone, and full of the flavour that slowly simmered its way in throughout the day…

crockpots may be one of the best inventions yet.