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Lunch! What'd ya have? (2012–2014)


Chris Hennes
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Lunch today: Variations on a Theme, finale.

Remainder of the "chicken sauce" from yesterday, with added "aged" soy sauce (Kimlan) and with the flavor profile changed by also adding in sesame oil, ground white pepper, ryori-shu, chopped Serrano chile peppers. Served on smooth-textured/slippery semi-wide flat rice noodles I used Bánh Phở - this one - as a stand-in for "Hor Fun" (河粉) which was what I actually wanted but did not have on hand. Cilantro leaves & deep-fried shallots on top.

Remainder of the "chicken broth", with trimmed soaked baby Bok Choy cooked in it till just wilted.

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H...

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Lenten Lunch!!

Today's Lunch-- " A fusion of Two Belly's" sandwich

I fused Salmon Belly and Pike Belly last week using Activa RM--made a

roll and froze it. I cut the roll in 1/4 " slices and fried one side

and made my lunch!!

Toke a whole wheat loaf and sliced into small sandwich slices and roasted it

Topped it with Pepper Aioli and a squeeze of kishu Mandarin orange!!

Yumm.. Raspberry oyster chasers!!

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great looking salmon Paul
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deep-fried shallots

do you buy them as such or DF them yourself? Ive been exploring the 'crispy' sections of my chinese groceries.

I buy them. It's too much bother to do it myself, especially in small batches. I don't mind that they are not super-freshly-prepared "just a few minutes ago". I think the stuff you can get in both the Chinese and Indian groceries are fairly decent and cheap - in my experience - so long as you do inspect the packages for apparent crispiness/freshness and relatively non-shattered stuff ("banged around to a powder") at the bottoms of the packages.

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Sunday lunch:

• Chinese okra (Luffa acutangula; Google images), snow fungus (Tremella fuciformis), fresh "Far Koo" (flower-patterned thick-cap shiitake mushroom; fresh, not dried), and Southern-Chinese type fish cake [store-bought] soup.

• Chicken thigh meat stir-fried w/ garlic, shallots, Thai basil, Thai eggplants§, hot long green (ripening) chillies.

• Chinese roast pork [store-bought], re-warmed & skin re-crisped in the oven.

• White rice (Basmati).

Marinated w/ fish sauce (Red Boat), peanut oil, bit of corn starch. (Not sure now, 12 hrs later, if I added anything else)

§ Not terribly fresh - the seeds are already blackening on being cut open.

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Most of the ingredients after prep:

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Lunch today, Tuesday:

• Pork, tofu rolls (see pic) & bamboo shoots braised w/ sautéed smashed garlic & mutenka shiro miso (Maruchan).

• Stir-fried/sautéed chopped Chinese long beans ("Yard Long Beans"; Vigna unguiculata subsp. sesquipedalis) w/ garlic.

• Semi-wide flat egg noodles (a Vietnamese brand).

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Those "tofu rolls":

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Lunch today, Wednesday:

• Rice congee ("jook"; 粥; Yale: juk1) with short-cut pork spare ribs sautéed with lots of julienned fresh ginger (a large fully heaped handful's worth plus a bit more!) (the ginger is sautéed first till just beginning to brown, then the ribs added). Lightly salted, tossed around; water added and the mix simmered for about 30-40 minutes. Long-grain rice (I used Basmati) (ratio water:raw rice ~ 10:1) added, stirred in, simmering resumed for about 1/2 hour or so more till desired consistency was reached w/ occasional stirring. Eaten w/ chopped scallions & cilantro, plus "Tung Choy" (Tianjin preserved vegetable) and deep-fried shallots.

• A form of mustard common in Chinese cuisine, often called "pull mustard" in English, Chinese name usually "雪裡紅" (Yale: syut3 leui5 hung4); a form of Brassica juncea. (See here also and the Google Translation) There are frilly-leaved varieties and non-frilly-leaved varieties which appear to go by the same name of "雪裡紅"; the form I usually see and buy and use is a non-frilly form, see pic below. Today I simply stir-fried it with sliced garlic, tossing in a mixture of oyster sauce (Lee Kum Kee), fish sauce (Red Boat), Shaohsing wine (Wei Chuan) and a dash of sesame oil (Dragonfly) towards the end.

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Fresh wood ear mushrooms, fresh white beech mushrooms, fresh flower-cap shiitake mushrooms (quartered), cauliflower florets, trimmed green onions - sautéed in Maussane-les-Alpilles olive oil w/ pink Himalayan salt.

Another bowl of the "jook" from yesterday, with chopped green onions & cilantro only. (no pic)

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Lunch today (Friday):

Schnecken Bratwurst - from my local German butcher. Pan-fried in the pan residues from frying onions, plus extra oil. Pan residues deglazed w/ Rainwater Madeira (Blandys) diluted w/ a little water & w/ a few nuggets of rock sugar added into the simmering liquid; the resulting liquid used as a sauce for the schnecken & potatoes.

• Above-mentioned pan-fried sliced onions.

• Western celery pan-fried in the residues after deglazing w/ a little more oil.

• Boiled fingerling potatoes, drained & tossed w/ butter.

• Oven-roasted carrots & parsnips - tossed w/ olive oil, salt, thyme, sage; before going into the oven.

Claus' German Sausage & Meats. Website.

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Edited by huiray (log)
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Lunch on Saturday:

Mettwurst with sauerkraut§. Eaten w/ Cherub tomatoes & scallions.

Freshly made, from my local German butcher. (Claus')

§ Kühne Barrel Sauerkraut, jarred. Usually I get it in bulk from Claus' but on Friday they only had the jarred on hand.

Metts browned in olive oil (Unio Arbequina EV), the kraut added (barely drained, so lots of retained liquid), tossed a bit, adequate water and a few bay leaves and a scattering of whole white peppercorns added followed by a dose of brewed rice vinegar (Marukan) plus some sea salt, and the mix simmered till "done". [No, no beer or caraway seeds (not keen on either). Yes, a bit cross-cultural. :-) ]

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huiray

is this the Fish Cake you mentioned in the Soup above?

Fish Cake?.jpg

it seems to have add- ins and previously fried?

love to see the wrapper as very little english is spoken in my largish Chinese market.

picked up a few 'green things' today from that market based on your pics of common Chinese greens.

thanks. interersted in exploring the tofu/fish cakes in the future.

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huiray

is this the Fish Cake you mentioned in the Soup above?

attachicon.gifFish Cake?.jpg

it seems to have add- ins and previously fried?

love to see the wrapper as very little english is spoken in my largish Chinese market.

picked up a few 'green things' today from that market based on your pics of common Chinese greens.

thanks. interersted in exploring the tofu/fish cakes in the future.

rotuts,

Yes, that's the fish cake. No wrapper, sorry, it would have been repackaged from bulk anyway. Yes, those are chopped scallions/green onions and carrot bits you see in there and yes, it is pre-fried. Usually I get them frozen, I haven't picked up freshly made ones in a very long time (I don't live in the right place for that, too). The non-restaurant commercial ones come in several sizes and shapes - commonly one also sees flattish rectangular pieces rather than the ovoids you see in my picture. Chinese preparations and Japanese preparations of these fish cakes also vary, in some cases very considerably. [cf Japanese Kamaboko] The "Southern Chinese"/HK/"Overseas Chinese" varieties often have these scallion and carrot bits in them but not always. Sometimes there are also peas in them. You can use them in soups, with soupy noodles, even in fried rice or stir fries, rewarmed/refried (briefly) by themselves w/ a dipping sauce, say...usually sliced up in each case.

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• Lotus root & pork spare ribs soup.§ With garlic, jujubes, raw peanuts & fresh "Far Koo".

• Bone-in chicken stir-fried/sautéed with garlic, Napa heart & hot green chillies.

• White rice (Basmati).

§ Short-cut pork spare ribs sautéed w/ lightly crushed garlic cloves plus some salt till fond is well developed then water added. Simmered for 10-15 minutes or so, sliced lotus root & jujubes added, followed shortly by the fresh "Far Koo" mushrooms (flower-patterned thick cap shiitakes; quartered) and peanuts and the mix simmered till done, about 1+ hour or so.

Chopped-up chicken pieces pre-marinated w/ Shaohsing wine (Wei Chuan), fish sauce (Red Boat), fresh ground black pepper, sesame oil (Dragonfly). The smashed, chopped garlic was tossed in the hot pan containing oil, the chicken + marinade tossed in quickly, the mix stirred/banged around; followed by the sliced hot long green (ripening to orange) chillies and trimmed leaves of the heart of a Napa cabbage ("Wong Nga Pak") almost at the end - the idea was to just barely cook the Napa cabbage and retain the crispiness/crunch of it as far as possible.

I used "大南棗" today, a.k.a. "Blue Dates". They're not actually blue in color but are very dark black-red visually, are larger than the more common "red dates" and have a smoky smell to them. Side note: The currently accepted name for Chinese dates/jujubes appears to be Ziziphus jujuba, rather than the Ziziphus zizyphus previously used which is recognized as a synonym. See: http://www.theplantlist.org/tpl/record/kew-2470699

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Lunch on Tuesday:

• Fried rice – with sliced garlic, very short-cut Chinese long beans, pre-steamed wine-flavored “Lap Cheong” [Chinese sausages] cut into small rounds, sliced de-stringed Western celery, eggs scrambled in situ, day-old Basmati rice. No soy sauce. Liquids from the steaming of the lap cheong added to the rice while being fried.

• Snow fungus & wood-ear fungus, both rehydrated; and trimmed scallions in chicken broth.

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Early lunch on Saturday (before dashing out the door to take in Francesca da Rimini in HD Live) was leftovers from dinner the previous night.

Pork slices & shrimp stir-fried w/ sliced Poblano peppers, red bell pepper, halved shallots, and black bean - garlic sauce (Lee Kum Kee). Served on white rice (Basmati). Also large-leaf edible chrysanthemum (Chrysanthemum coronarium; "Dai Choy Tong Ho"; see here, here, here, here for other images) in chicken broth.

Pics from the previous night's dinner:

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The trimmed tong ho soaking in water:

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Lunch on Sunday:

• Taiwan Choy Sum (see pic) in broth.

• Wide wonton noodles (Twin Marquis) tossed w/ a sauce of a sauté of sliced garlic in peanut oil, sliced pre-fried tofu (Nature's Soy), oyster sauce (Lee Kum Kee), jozo mirin (Morita).

• Cantonese roast duck (store-bought), re-warmed.

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Lunch today:

• Soup w/ baby green tips, fresh shiitake, pork, Japanese scallion.

A big, fatty pork chop (Western cut) was dismembered, the fat layer on the outside of the meat cut out and chopped up, the meat separated from the bones and the meat cut into chunks and sliced against the grain. The chopped-up fat + bones were sautéed till the fat pieces were “browned” and liquid lard had been generated, then the mix quenched w/ water; salt was added and the soup simmered for a bit. The sliced pork meat was then added in followed after a short while by trimmed “veggie green tips”; then by sliced fresh flower-patterned thick-cap shiitake mushrooms (“Far Koo”). A brief simmer was done; then thinly-sliced (slantwise on the bias) “Japanese onion (scallion)”§ tossed in and the heat was turned off.

These were called “菜苗” in my local Chinese grocery but that term is really just a generic term for young sprouts/young shoots of almost any kind of veggie. The ones I picked up and used today look like young kale shoot tips.

§ They were labeled as such in my local Chinese grocery. They're not quite “negi”.

• Cellophane noodles w/ shrimp & minced pork.

Whole (defrosted) shrimp were de-shelled & de-headed, deveined, reserved. The shells & heads (with lots of head cream) were sautéed w/ chopped smashed garlic and finely sliced fresh ginger w/ some salt; quenched w/ water, simmered for a while, then poured through a sieve to furnish a nice shrimp stock w/ lots of orange “shrimp cream” oil. Finely chopped smashed garlic & finely sliced ginger were sautéed in peanut oil, minced somewhat-fatty pork added in & the mix tossed around a bit; seasoned w/ salt, a bit of fish sauce, some light soy sauce, a bit of mirin; then sliced “chit kua”/Chinese ”hairy gourd” [de-skinned, of course] tossed in, the mix banged around for a bit, then quenched w/ the reserved shrimp stock & the mix simmered for a short while. The reserved shrimp were then added in followed by several bundles of “cellophane noodles” (“Fun See”) and the whole stirred and simmered till done and much of the liquid had been absorbed by the noodles.

This was a riff on what would otherwise have been “Tai Yee Ma Kar Lui”, where I would normally use dried shrimp (“Har Mai”) and neither ground pork nor shrimp stock would have been used. I must say I did not care for this riff. I prefer the original “Tai Yee Ma Kar Lui” using dried shrimp and with minimal condiments. Perhaps if super-fresh shrimp were available to me it might have been different.

See here and here for previous posts on this dish.

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Pics of the "Japanese onion" and the “菜苗” :

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