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junehl

Chinese Eats at Home (Part 3)

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Tonight we made slow-braised beef with potatoes, from Revolutionary Chinese Cookbook. We reduced the oven temperature to 275F and the chuck roast turned out juicy and falling-apart tender. The sauce developed a remarkably complex flavor given the relatively short list of ingredients – dou ban jian, cinnamon, star anise, dried chiles, dark soy, light soy, and rice vinegar. No leftovers.

This was on the table tonight, made with "eternal venison" (I have four milk crates of the stuff in the freezer!).

This dish was a definite winner, and my parents, Paul and Diana (and I) pronounced it the best beef stew ever. I did up the quantity by a half, just to ensure leftovers for my breakfast.

You are right, Bruce. So complex, for such a simple list of ingredients, and such a simple technique. I used a mixture of russet and yukon gold potatoes, because that was what I had on hand.

Susan, I am glad that you liked the stew, and hope you are feeling better. What cut of “eternal venison” do you use for braising?

Bruce, for this, I used some shoulder (see this for more details on how I decide what to use for what).

But, my leftovers for breakfast and dinner. Oh, me, oh my. I think my braise ended up wetter than she indicated in the recipe was just fine with me. Sure did a nice job of helping clear out my "sciences" (sinuses). This just maybe Chinese penicillin.

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I have a question about chicken bao for all of you. I grew up eating these chicken bao where the filling was a type of patty made of chopped chicken and cabbage topped with chunks of hard boiled egg, char siu, and lop cheung. Is this a common way of making chicken bao, or is it just something peculiar to the bao made in Los Angeles' chinatown? Offhand I don't remember seeing in other places, but that might be because it's a more homey style of cooking and not what you'd typically find in restaurants.

I agree with bethpageblack. What you described, a bao with chopped chicken, hard boiled egg, char siu and laap cheung sounds like Dai Bao (the "big" bao). As made in Hong Kong, China. I haven't seen them offered in the USA for the 20 some years that I have been here. Chicken bao, here in the USA (which is rarely offered but I did have them once in a while) and in Hong Kong (you can usually find), use chopped chicken (ground chicken?) and mixed with some kind of vegetable - depending on the chef... usually Chinese chives, cabbages or something like that. Even in Hong Kong you can rarely find Dai Bao any more. I guess they need to use so many ingredients that this dim sum item is not profitable. There is an old Cantonese saying "Mai Dai Bao", which literally meaning "selling Dai Bao" but the implied meaning is like "fire sale" (no profit).


Edited by hzrt8w (log)

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I think I can say that anywhere there's a char siu bao stall here, you'll be able to get dai bao, leen yoong bao (lotus seed paste), dou sar bao (red bean), kaya bao (coconut custard) and lor mai gai (glutinous chicken rice with a bit of pork/mushroom). :smile:

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I wanted to use up my char siu filling, so I made one last batch of bao. This one was perfect!

I was going to make a yeast and baking powder bao, but sheetz mentioned they're not as sweet as baking powder bao, so I stuck with junehl's recipe. I made 1/4 the recipe, this time not heating the milk and definitely putting in the oil. The dough sat for several hours, and when I finally got around to putting it to use, it was getting late so I didn't bother kneading it. It was a bit sticky, so I used more flour on the board and on my pin than I usually do.

The dough was very easy to work with (other than occasionally sticking to my pin), and it steamed beautifully. As a result, I have my fluffiest bao with the best dough to filling ratio I've ever had.

I can't wait to do this again! I keep saying I'm going to freeze my bao, but I've already eaten more than half of what I made. Oops...Oh well, at least my tummy is full and my taste buds are happy!

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Wow much respect to everyone who went through the entire process of making those baos. I'm not one to get involved with looong cooking/preparation so I really wish I had your (everyone here) patience and talents!

Again, we had 'gai dan cha' for dessert (after Asian meatloaf for dinner -which is posted in the 'dinner' thread)

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Tonight Chicken Rice again, except it wasn't chicken.... it was guinea fowl and it was a revelation! I've been dying to eat this dish again and was so disappointed the supermarket was still out of decent chickens today (even made the chilli sauce yesterday in preparation). I picked up this bird anyway and was going to roast it like i normally would but decided in the end to go ahead with the original plan. Glad i did as it was delicious. It's as close to the flavour of the chickens you get in Asia as i've ever had here in the UK, rich taste with silky texture. The fat was beautifully rich as indeed was the stock for the rice, all in all markedly tastier than last time so testifies the wife:

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I have a question about chicken bao for all of you. I grew up eating these chicken bao where the filling was a type of patty made of chopped chicken and cabbage topped with chunks of hard boiled egg, char siu, and lop cheung. Is this a common way of making chicken bao, or is it just something peculiar to the bao made in Los Angeles' chinatown? Offhand I don't remember seeing in other places, but that might be because it's a more homey style of cooking and not what you'd typically find in restaurants.

I agree with bethpageblack. What you described, a bao with chopped chicken, hard boiled egg, char siu and laap cheung sounds like Dai Bao (the "big" bao). As made in Hong Kong, China. I haven't seen them offered in the USA for the 20 some years that I have been here.

Interesting, I never knew that! Don't they sell them in the mom and pop places dim sum shops in SF Chinatown? There are still a handful of places that sell them in LA Chinatown. I should try making them myself. They don't seem too hard.

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Prawncrackers,

  Is the chicken rice the same as described in this thread, or something different? Looks wonderful!

Wow, well dug out that thread - that is a great recipe. Yes, mine is basically the same dish minus the broth and other bits like Pandanus, Saffron & Kombu (very good idea this one). You should try it.

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I agree with bethpageblack.  What you described, a bao with chopped chicken, hard boiled egg, char siu and laap cheung sounds like Dai Bao (the "big" bao).  As made in Hong Kong, China.  I haven't seen them offered in the USA for the 20 some years that I have been here. 

Interesting, I never knew that! Don't they sell them in the mom and pop places dim sum shops in SF Chinatown? There are still a handful of places that sell them in LA Chinatown. I should try making them myself. They don't seem too hard.

You are probably right that they still sell them in Chinatown. I have shyed away from eating dim sum in Chinatown (both in SF and LA) for many years.

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Getting ready for Chinese New Year, so I decided to test some new recipes. As some of you may remember, last year I made a crispy boneless stuffed chicken, which was a huge hit but WAY too time consuming for me to want to do it again unless I'm having VIPs over for dinner. So this year I thought I'd try a beggar's chicken. The recipe I used is adapted from one shared by Jo-mel some years back and is made using a bread dough crust instead of the traditional style made of clay. The end result is that the crust is completely edible.

Here's the chicken just taken out of the oven

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Cutting open the crust and the inner lotus leaves reveals:

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Now for the chicken and the stuffing, made of pork, Tianjin preserved vegetable, and bamboo shoots.

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To serve, each person gets a few slices of chicken, some stuffing, and a bit of the crust.

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I think I didn't rinse the preserved vegetable well enough and so the stuffing was too salty. On the other hand the meat was perfectly seasoned and succulent. I used frozen bread dough for the crust-a bit bland, but tasted ok when eaten with some stuffing spooned on top. Overall, with a bit of minor tweaking, I think it's a winner.


Edited by sheetz (log)

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Tonight was leftover roast duck from last night (see the Dinner! thread) and steamed scallops. I'm thinking about cooking for Chinese New Year too and these two dishes will definitely be on the menu. I really like presenting the scallops this way but just got to figure put how to steam a load more at one time... :unsure:

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What's everyone else planning to cook for CNY?

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What's everyone else planning to cook for CNY?

Beautiful, Prawncrackers! My CNY plans involve checking this thread frequently and gazing covetously all of the delectable food. :smile:

Last night we steamed skin-on striped bass fillets with fermented black beans, scallions, and ginger. The texture was beautifully light and delicate, and the fish looked pretty in its pool of dark-soy-tinted sauce. Probably the best texture I have achieved with striped bass, which can become mushy. Unfortunately, I was feeling way too lousy for pictures. Sorry.

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Tonight was leftover roast duck from last night (see the Dinner! thread) and steamed scallops.  I'm thinking about cooking for Chinese New Year too and these two dishes will definitely be on the menu.  I really like presenting the scallops this way but just got to figure put how to steam a load more at one time... :unsure: 

That's one gorgeous looking duck! :wub:

Would you be able to steam the scallops together on a platter, then plate onto the shells, drizzle with sauce, and top with cilantro?

I haven't even begun to think about CNY! I'll just say definitely NO SIU MAI! :laugh:

For background on my siu mai comment, check out the "Mass Production Dim Sum " thread in this forum.

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Someone made char siu bao again! Twenty-seven pieces, and they're my best yet! I need to do a better job of skimming the fat out of the filling, and I have to get the bottoms of the bao thicker (the tops are kind of thick, but the bottoms are very thin). I have a lot of filling in each bao this time around, which is great (I like a high filling:bao ratio), but it falls apart more easily. But that's OK...I just ate the broken ones fresh from the steamer! :smile:

I thought I had eaten four, but after counting, I seem to have eaten five. Oops.

Now who do I see about changing my member name to "onetrickpony"?


Edited by prasantrin (log)

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Cutting open the crust and the inner lotus leaves reveals:

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This is awesome, sheetz! I admire your skills and attempted this one. And did you have a guest of honor to break open the cacoon? :laugh:

What is the key? The bread dough is to make sure all the heat and moisture stay inside the lotus leave?


Edited by hzrt8w (log)

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This is awesome, sheetz!  I admire your skills and attempted this one.  And did you have a guest of honor to break open the cacoon?  :laugh:

What is the key?  The bread dough is to make sure all the heat and moisture stay inside the lotus leave?

Haha, no guest of honor since this was just a practice run. The bread casing cooks the chicken in a higher pressure environment, making it moist and tender. I only cooked it for 2 1/2 hours, but some other recipes have you cook for 3-4 hours, resulting in meat that literally falls off the bone.

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Cold weather lately... best for making a clay pot of rice.

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With chicken, black mushroom slices, dried oyster slices and shredded dried scallops.

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Seasoned with white pepper, sesame oil, a bit of XiaoHsing wine and light soy sauce. Some chopped green onions on top.

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Happy New Year! I wish good health and great prosperity to all readers.

Just wanted to share our cny eve dinner: eggrolls, geoduck over lettuce, lobster, scallop stir fried with veg, shark fins soup, steam fish and chicken, all mom-made. :biggrin:

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Edited by lemoncoke (log)

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Not my cooking, but someone posted a picture of king prawn chow mein on another forum I use. Have you ever seen such BIG prawns!!!

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Edited by CFT (log)

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We have gone easy on heat during grandma's visit, but tonight I needed a chile fix so we made Fuchsia Dunlop’s Sichuan dry-fried chicken with celery and scallions. I used a bag of Sichuan peppercorns from our local Asian market, but they didn’t have much flavor. Sounds like a good excuse for a Penzeys run.

Gan ban ji

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Hi I am going to contribut some dishes I prepared in the past few days:

seaweed egg roll

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Happy Balls (fish pork meat)

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Tofu skin roll

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pork and radish in red beancurd paste

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Edited by Tofu (log)

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This is my first time posting pix on this thread - I am so intimidated by all of the beautiful food you folks display!

Friday was our first day back in Cleveland after a two week vacation. So naturally, it snowed most of the day. Though our fridge was pretty empty, neither of us really wanted to go out in the terrible weather. So, what to fix for dinner?

We had a small bag of marvelous Grape Tomatoes that we brought back from Florida sitting on the counter. A quick inventory of the produce drawer yielded half a head of celery cabbage that was still in good shape, a large bag of garden carrots, and a bag of mostly bad cilantro. Moving on to the freezer, I realized that we still had a supply of kreplach (Jewish Chicken and Liver Dumplings, made with Won Ton Skins) left over from Rosh Hashonah last September. I also pulled out a package of thin Chinese egg noodles that had been in the freezer too long, two bags of Turkey Stock we had made in December, and some frozen garden chilies. Add onion and garden garlic from the pantry - and we had a delightful, comforting meal, even though we really didn't have any food in the house.

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Since we ate this soup over two nights, we used up 4 of the five skeins of noodles. What did I do with the last "orphan" skein? I made breakfast!


Edited by NancyH (log)

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Tofu: Gosh your meals are so inventive! What was inside those delectable looking seaweed egg rolls? It looks so perfect as an entree for a dinner party!

And the tofu skin rolls -they remind me so much of this particular Teo Chiu dish I love (also involves tofu skin...and in rolls..). Recipe...pleeasssee?

NancyH: We just had wonton at home too! Although our soups are different -your version looks so vibrant with all those cute grape tomatoes and greens poking out here and there -and I really like how the red apples on your table mat seem to compliment the tomatoes :biggrin:

Wonton soup

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NancyH: We just had wonton at home too! Although our soups are different -your version looks so vibrant with all those cute grape tomatoes and greens poking out here and there -and I really like how the red apples on your table mat seem to compliment the tomatoes  :biggrin:

Ce'nedra - I am jealous of that beautiful looking shrimp! Here in Cleveland, all shrimp is frozen and chemicalized; I just can't eat it. Your soup looks wonderful!

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