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Cooking with "Every Grain of Rice"

Chinese Cookbook

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17 replies to this topic

#1 jmolinari

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Posted 05 February 2013 - 06:57 AM

Someone suggested starting a topic to discuss dishes made from this book. I think it's a good idea.
I got the book a couple weeks ago and read through it. It's fantastic. While i have Dunlop's other books and have cooked from them A LOT, this one seems more streamlined for weeknight dinners with dishes that don't require 8-10 marinade or sauce ingredients.

I've cooked a couple meals from it and everything has been awesome.

Last week it was chicken with black bean sauce and spinach with fermented tofu. Both were delicious.

Last night it was pork tenderloin with chinese chives (not a recipe in the book, but i took the recipe for the chicken livers with chives and subbed pork tenderloin), stir fried cabbage with dry shrimp and bok choy with shiitake (i used dry, rehydrated).

Everything was delicious. I really liked the baby bok choy. The flavors were clean and light. Wife thought it was kind of bland, but i liked it. The cabbage was also delicious, though wife and daughter didn't agree :) I thought it was funny that my purple cabbage turned my yellow/orange tiny dry shrimp green.

Forgot to take pictures of the dishes.

What is everyone else making?

#2 mukki

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Posted 05 February 2013 - 07:59 AM

Have loved:
Stir Fried Beef with Black Beans and Chile
Red Braised Pork Belly (cooked the pork down longer than the recipe seems to indicate)
Stir Fried Broccoli with Chile and Sichuan Pepper
Cumin Beef (easier recipe than the one in RCC, though not as unctuous because it skips the initial velveting step)
Kung Pao Chicken (repeat from LOP)
Zha Jiang Mian (but made with modifications to spice it up)

#3 patrickamory

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Posted 05 February 2013 - 06:38 PM

I've made the cabbage with dried shrimp, and the vegetable soup with pork meatballs. Both delicious.

#4 jmolinari

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Posted 26 February 2013 - 07:14 AM

I made the pork and potato stew a couple days ago. I pressure cooked it, which was awesome because it was done in about 45 minutes. I did 30 minutes on the pork. Let the PC natural release (About 10 mins), added potatoes and carrots, high pressure 6 minutes and natural release (about 10 minutes).

Also added carrots for some vegetable component. 

 

Served with partially milled brown rice.

 

Super delicious.

 

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Edited by jmolinari, 26 February 2013 - 07:15 AM.


#5 janeer

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Posted 24 March 2013 - 09:38 PM

have made two quick dishes, Cold Chicken with Spicey Sichuanese Sauce, and Ho Fun Rice Noodles with Mushrooms. 



#6 patrickamory

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Posted 25 March 2013 - 06:04 PM

I made the "send the rice down" chopped celery with ground beef, and the twice-cooked swiss chard (the latter especially delicious).

 

I had real Pixian chili bean paste this time and it makes a huge difference over the Lee Kum Kee kind!



#7 FeChef

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Posted 25 March 2013 - 06:59 PM

I came into this thread expecting to read about dishes with rice. Are my eyes decieving me or is there no mention of rice in any of these posts?

 

Ah, I just noticed the 4th post.


Edited by FeChef, 25 March 2013 - 07:00 PM.


#8 patrickamory

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Posted 25 March 2013 - 07:13 PM

Hmm, I also made the shrimp fried rice



#9 janeer

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Posted 25 March 2013 - 07:47 PM

I made the "send the rice down" chopped celery with ground beef, and the twice-cooked swiss chard (the latter especially delicious).

 

I had real Pixian chili bean paste this time and it makes a huge difference over the Lee Kum Kee kind!

What did you think of Send the Rice Down?



#10 patrickamory

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Posted 26 March 2013 - 07:38 AM

It was good, I think perhaps I should have dried the celery more thoroughly before stir-frying. It suffered in comparison to the chard, which was ridiculously good.



#11 janeer

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Posted 26 March 2013 - 07:19 PM

It was good, I think perhaps I should have dried the celery more thoroughly before stir-frying. It suffered in comparison to the chard, which was ridiculously good.

 

 

It was good, I think perhaps I should have dried the celery more thoroughly before stir-frying. It suffered in comparison to the chard, which was ridiculously good.

Thanks; the dish appealed to me. I will try the chard; I like chard when it's really (ridiculously) good. 



#12 patrickamory

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Posted 26 March 2013 - 10:14 PM

Both dishes are built around Sichuan chili bean paste... I really think that getting the Pixian stuff makes a huge difference. I've never tasted anything like it. Huge chunks of whole chili skins in the paste, mild and pickled tasting, just chunky and fantastic.



#13 Will

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Posted 31 March 2013 - 07:39 PM

Here are some of mine, including a lot of my favorites. Most have been written about in the Chinese cooking at home thread here, as well as on "that other food forum". I've written more about it in those other places, so I'll just summarize here with a "greatest hits".
 
Silken Tofu with Avocado" (鳄梨豆腐; èlí dòufǔ, p42)
avo_tofu.jpg
I was a bit skeptical of this one, even with all the praise it was getting, but it was pretty good.
 
Vegetarian Clay Bowl "Chicken" (钵钵腐竹; bōbō fǔzhú, p51)
clay_bowl_fuzhu.jpg
This came out better the second time I made it. I brought it to a picnic, and it went over quite well.
 
Smoky Eggplant with Garlic (火烧茄子; huǒshāo qiézi, p63).
smoky_eggplant.jpg
One of my favorites from the book. This supposedly comes from a restaurant in Sichuan. The smoky flavor of the grilled eggplant makes it like a Chinese baba ganouj.
 
Smacked Radishes (熗萝卜 qiàng luóbo, p58)
smacked_radishes.jpg
 
Pipa Doufu (琵琶豆腐; pípá dòufǔ, p78)
pipa_doufu.jpg
Ok, this one does take a little bit of effort, but it's a surefire hit - everyone I've made it for has liked it.

Stir-Fried Tofu with Black Bean and Chilli (香辣豆腐干; xiāng là dòufǔ gān, p86).
laoganma_doufu_gan.jpg
 
Greens with sizzling oil (油淋菜心; yóu lín càixīn, p168),
greens_sizzling_oil2.jpg
This is a fairly quick and easy dish that's definitely more than the sum of its parts.
 
 
Twice-cooked Swiss chard (回锅牛皮菜; huíguō niúpícài, p186).
huiguoniupicai.jpg
I knew I had to try that as soon as I saw the recipe, and it exceeded my expectations. A really great preparation of chard.
 
Hangzhou Eggplant (肉末茄子; ròumò qiézi, p212)
hangzhou_eggplant.jpg
Not actually 'rou mo' since I made it without meat. I did replace the pork with diced soaked shitakes rather than leaving it out. I didn't salt the eggplants, despite her suggestion to salt them, so I think that's why this came out a little bit bland. I still prefer yuxiang qiezi, even after trying this one twice.

Edited by Will, 31 March 2013 - 07:41 PM.


#14 liuzhou

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Posted 31 March 2013 - 11:25 PM

I'm a bit surprised that she has included avocado in a dish in a book supposedly about everyday Chinese home cooking. I've never met anyone in China who knew what avocados were and they are decidedly difficult to find outside of shops catering to ex-pats in the major cities.

But, I'll give it a try.

 

By the way my local restaurant has two dishes - 茄子肉末 (qiézi ròumò) and 肉末茄子 (ròumò qiézi) - 'eggplant and minced pork' or 'minced pork with eggplant' depending on which ingredient is more copiously represented.   :rolleyes:

 

Great pics.



#15 Will

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Posted 01 April 2013 - 12:23 PM

I'm a bit surprised that she has included avocado in a dish in a book supposedly about everyday Chinese home cooking. I've never met anyone in China who knew what avocados were and they are decidedly difficult to find outside of shops catering to ex-pats in the major cities.

 

While a lot of the book is fairly traditional, I think she also in this book (more than the others) has some recipes that try to encourage people to take a Chinese approach to cooking with less traditional ingredients, which I think is a good point for the book to drive home -- that is, that you can take a "Chinese" approach to cooking with ingredients that are common here, but not there. This is also helpful since if she went too traditional, people might have difficulty finding ingredients for a lot of the recipes.

 

This inspiration for this particular recipe comes, from what I can remember from the description, from a restaurant in Taiwan. I think avocado is probably a little more familiar there than in mainland China. I'll try to re-read that section and summarize next time I'm at home. While I don't think it actually comes from a monastery as I had originally thought, it is an interesting take on the more common dish with sliced pidan ("century egg") along with the tofu (both appropriate for Buddhist vegetarians and others who don't eat egg, and for people for whom pidan might not be palatable). I believe she does mention this somewhat more traditional variant (which I think is popular in Taiwan due to the Japanese influence -- correct me if I'm wrong) as well.

 

We live in California, where avocados are, of course, fairly plentiful. My mother-in-law (who's Chinese) loves using avocado in her home cooking. The most recent variation is shanyao (山药; i.e., nagaimo) blanched and sliced (cold), served with alternating slices of avocado, and dressed with a bit of lemon. I think it's an interesting use, though certainly not traditional in any sense.


Edited by Will, 01 April 2013 - 12:27 PM.


#16 liuzhou

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Posted 01 April 2013 - 10:44 PM

Thanks for your response, Will. Interesting.



#17 Will

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Posted 04 April 2013 - 08:58 AM

So, looking at the description again, this is a riff on a dish from a contemporary restaurant on the outskirts of Taipei; the dish is definitely "fusion". The original dish it's based on was fresh tofu with uni (sea urchin) on top, soy sauce, a hint of wasabi, and a wedge of avocado. Whatever the origin, the dish is pretty tasty.

 

She has the more usual variant with soy sauce, green onion, sesame oil (and optional pidan) on the previous page (41).



#18 liuzhou

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Posted 04 April 2013 - 06:52 PM

Thanks again!. It does sound tasty, yes.







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