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Everything posted by muichoi

  1. I've not had homemade versions of all those things, but certainly Tofu, soy sauce and soy milk are infinitely better home made-don't know about rice wine, the more expensive brands you buy are great bargains with all the secondary characteristics and complexity which come only from great age. Anyone know how to make foo yu, I've always wondered?
  2. Here's how I do it-but I'm used to sausage making any since(non-chinese) ones available here are so foul! Pork Shoulder Back fat--proportions to taste,you don't actually need as much fat in a dried sausage as in a fresh one. Salt-3 teaspoons per pound of flesh Saltpeter-1 pinch per pound of flesh Cut the meat and fat into 1 inch cubes,add salt and saltpetre, mix well and leave overnight. Drain and dry meat but do not rinse. Mince with two cleavers-much better result than machine. Add dark soy, Shaoshing wine,mei kuei lu, FRESHLY GROUND five-spice powder,chinese rock sugar and MSG to taste. Mix very well. Take thin pork casings,soak in water with a little vinegar, thread onto tap or funnel and rinse thoroughly. Thread onto a sausage filling attachment,piping bag or funnel and fill, not too tightly. Squeeze and twist at appropriate intervals, then tie with string. Hang in a cool breezy place for about a week, making sure the sausages don't touch each other.
  3. I really want to know how to reconstitute squid like that!
  4. Will post my Lap Cheung recipe in a couple of days-computer down at the moment so have to be quick now!
  5. Looks great! the only pomfrets we get are very old!
  6. I do give the meat about fifty 'grabs' and then throw the ball repeatedly back into the mixing bowl as well-I'm unsure of what actually happens, but I think one's getting rid of air rather than adding it-it feels like the protein chains are getting longer and longer, but I'm certainly scientifically illiterate.
  7. It shouldn't be paste like;it's the same technique as used to make shrimp balls,and should give the same sensation of eating meat and at the same time eating something ground up, if you see what I mean-it should actually have a lot of texture,as though the fibres are elongated. Just had one for dinner,with salt fish. It really was very good. To try to be more clear, the lean meat is cut into small dice on a large board then hit repeatedly with the back of a heavy cleaver, which is about 1/3 of an inch wide,thus kind of opening up the fibres rather than chopping. Don't really understand the wimpy burger reference, I've never had one.
  8. I think I read this somewhere,but I don't remember the source. Anyone know the earliest reference?
  9. Thanks for the fascinating information, danjou, I've always wondered what those packets of Borax powder were for. Is it really very dangerous? I'm quite tempted to try it. Any idea how long soda has been used? I must say I find stir fried beef tenderloin pretty unpleasant, particularly untreated. The only time I don't use soda is when I have skirt available. I'd be thrilled to know your mother's method for preparing beef!
  10. I know a lot about sausage making, so maybe able to help a bit-Lap cheung is pretty straightforward. Were they steamed or fried, and what were the flavour characteristics you remember?
  11. I must admit I don't particularly like green vegetables cooked from scratch in the microwave, but reheating blanched and refreshed is good.
  12. No restaurants do-that's why plain food at home can be something special-and I'm not meaning Kobe beef or anything so glamorous, but the best organically reared chickens, for example. In the places where you can buy them cut up, the best parts are the cheapest-but a whole homemade deep-fried crisp chicken or salt-baked chicken is always better than a restaurant one because of the quality of the bird, though it took me years to master the wonderful and economical chinese cutting technique for cooked birds.
  13. One certainly can achieve the right texture without soda-but not without manually pounding the meat,though it's possible to use the plastic blade of the food processor.
  14. Doesn't produce yellowish vegetables at all. On the contrary far greener owing to the setting of the clorophyll in cold water-though of course one must take the greatest care not to microwave for too long. My method produces a deliciously al dente result.
  15. Looks delicious-black mushrooms can be soaked very quickly in the microwave with excellent results if time is short.
  16. True, but I'm sure the original is a thin greyish liquid, more akin to fish sauce than what we now buy.
  17. Thanks Tepee-I'm not entirely convinced that this has the ring of truth about it, though!
  18. I know what you mean, but having gone to the trouble of buying the stuff, I like to show it respect by giving it that extra 5-10 minutes.
  19. Anyone have a recipe?I don't like the texture, colour or flavour of the commercial article.
  20. I think the important technique has not been touched on here-the fat part of the pork(should be about 20% by weight) should be chopped fine,but the meat should be trimmed, diced, salted,then pounded to a paste like texture with the back of a heavy cleaver, sprinkling with ginger and spring onion infused wine occasionally. Other ingredients are then added. I add a small pinch of soda. This is the only way to achieve a texture that is crisp and bouncy rather than mealy, which I don't like.
  21. Very interesting use of fungus and fermented bean curds-never seen these used in the same dish before-but I am a little shocked at the use of boneless, skinless chicken breasts! It seems a very sensibly Chinese thing to understand that the flavour and textural enjoyment are in the bones and skin-which is partly why one should use the very finest artisanal raised birds available-how many restaurants do that?
  22. I find the best way to do this is to blanch the whole vegetable then refresh in cold water, then arrange on a plate-the vegetable can then be cut into eating sized pieces while keeping the visual form of the original. The plate is then covered in plastic film and microwaved until hot, excess liquid carefully drained,dressed and served. I think blanching for ten minutes in not much water is not a good way to proceed-you need LOTS of water and 30 seconds-1 minute,then plunge into iced water. I generally disapprove of the bringing of western technique to Chinese food, but as with genuine simmering instead of the slow boiling practiced all over Asia this gives a very much better result. Of course, if you don't mind about the appearance then the taste is better if you don't refresh and serve immediately.
  23. Isn't it soda that's normally used with beef and prawns,and other meats too?as with the question of MSG I used to be a purist and wouldn't touch it, but used in the very smallest possible quantities it gives such a good result that it's too difficult to ignore. It also is a very good 'defisher' ie defusing slightly rank odours that have no place in Cantonese food. Utter discretion is needed, however. Maybe Borax is what's used with dried squid . Here in London it used to be possible to buy soaked squid of the most extraordinary tenderness. Maybe I should try-anyone know the right amount to use?
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