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Dinner 2015 (Part 5)


Jon Savage
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huiray,

 

I really like the look of your rice in the above photo. What kind is it, and how do you achieve such separation on the grains?

 

My rice can turn out sticky even when I saute a bit in fat before adding the water. Not something I'd kick off the plate, but your's looks especially good tonight.

> ^ . . ^ <

 

 

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huiray,

 

I really like the look of your rice in the above photo. What kind is it, and how do you achieve such separation on the grains?

 

My rice can turn out sticky even when I saute a bit in fat before adding the water. Not something I'd kick off the plate, but your's looks especially good tonight.

 

Crepes, thank you.

 

This batch was made with Dunar Elonga basmati rice (this one).  I do it the usual way I do it on the stove top. The rice is washed first till the rinsing water runs essentially clear. (The 1st wash is done by adding just enough water so that the rice can be lightly "ground" with my hand made into a fist, before the first "rinse" - running water in from the tap with agitation then decanting the water off from the rice in the pot. The "grinding" is rarely repeated. Two more rinse-and-decants is then usually sufficient.) Enough water (usually about 1 1/2 volumes of water to the wet/just-drained rice measured at 1 volume when dry for basmati) (or I use the "palm depth" method sometimes, plus just a splash more maybe) (depending on experience with the particular brand) is then added and the pot with the rice & water is heated on medium flame till the water just drops below the surface of the (expanding) rice, the cover then put on and "rotated" after a bit of a head of steam has built up after maybe 30 sec to a minute (to create a tighter "seal") and the fire turned down to the lowest setting for about 15 minutes (I sometimes forget, darn) before being shut off. I leave the pot untouched for at least 5 minutes after that (often longer) before taking the lid off and fluffing with the back of a rice serving ladle (or a spoon or a fork) while letting the steam escape. I have to say though that I almost always use the same pot  for making rice that I've had and used for 30-plus years.

 

I cook basmati rice much of the time, jasmine and other rices less often. The basmati rices I currently have:

Dunar Elonga (as above), Z Reserve (this one), Zebra (this one), Daawat Super (this one) brands; at other times I may have Tilda, Royal, or other ones around. Of the six I specifically mentioned I find Daawat and Zebra probably less compatible with E Asian dishes of the sort I make, although they would be as good as or better with spicy ("curry-type") S/SE Asian dishes.

(For the sake of completion I also have: Shirakiku Keisenmai Premium Hitomebore (Californian) (this one), "Four Horses" (sic) Thai Hom Mali, Tilda Sona Masoori (this one), Bineshii wild rice (this one). (Plus also some unknown (bulk) "brown basmati rice" somewhere in the cupboard, I think). I'm out of the more usual Thai hom mali I buy.

Edited by huiray (log)
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Brought grouper home from the coast, so I grilled it last night with a lemon butter baste. I love grouper -- so mild, such a great flavor, and it lends itself to almost any prep, but it's hard to beat a simple grilled treatment. And I do love my GrillGrates -- didn't even use a basket on this!

 

Served with rice pilaf and green beans sauteed with ginger and garlic, soy sauce and mirin.

 

grouper.JPG

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Don't ask. Eat it.

www.kayatthekeyboard.wordpress.com

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There are many kinds of grouper, from what I've seen out there.  Could you elaborate, please, on which you purchased? It looks like this was from a pretty good-sized fish. I struggle with the decisions when I have the option to buy grouper - and yes, when I've had it in restaurants it's been delicious.

Nancy Smith, aka "Smithy"
HosteG Forumsnsmith@egstaff.org

"Every day should be filled with something delicious, because life is too short not to spoil yourself. " -- Ling (with permission)

"There comes a time in every project when you have to shoot the engineer and start production." -- author unknown

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There are many kinds of grouper, from what I've seen out there.  Could you elaborate, please, on which you purchased? It looks like this was from a pretty good-sized fish. I struggle with the decisions when I have the option to buy grouper - and yes, when I've had it in restaurants it's been delicious.

I wish I could offer more help. It was from the tray that said "grouper" in the fish market. I can tell you it was a sizeable fish, though, as my one-pound chunk I bought was a bit less than half of a big filet that was on a tray of big filets that appeared to have been sliced off a larger fish. Would not surprise me if, before being dressed, it had weighed in at 40-ish pounds. 

 

My filet ranged from about two inches thick (the end you see on the plate) to less than an inch. I wound up folding the thin end, and taking it off the fire earlier than the thick one, and I still overcooked it a touch. The thick one was perfect.

 

Sorry I'm not more help.

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Don't ask. Eat it.

www.kayatthekeyboard.wordpress.com

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Now back home from holidays in Sheffield (UK), Albania and northern Greece.

 

Monkfish was seared then finished in oven, on top of celery and young carrots. Added the Speck in the last couple of minutes. Samphire before the photos were made.

 

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Tonight I made a white spinach and artichoke lasagna. Barilla pasta, bechamel with a little Chardonnay, spinach with sauteed onion and garlic, a bit of crushed red pepper, canned artie hearts from TJ's sliced into about 10 thin wedges lengthwise from each piece, and layered into the pan with a middle layer of large curd creamy cottage cheese mixed with a couple eggs, oregano and parmesan cheese. No tomato and no mozzarella. Topped with bechamel and parm.

 

It smelled really good cooking, but unfortunately, I believe I oversalted at least one of the components. Husband doesn't agree, and I'm didn't kick it off my plate, but Note to Self: when you add parm and wine, cut the salt!

 

I use cottage cheese in lasagna by choice. I tried ricotta one time. It's a bit more expensive, and I had always coveted it, but was disappointed when I tried it. Then again, there are many grades of ricotta, so perhaps I shouldn't give up on this whey cheese.

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> ^ . . ^ <

 

 

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Nothing special but the first course was the very last of the cucumbers from my balcony, along with a few formerly green tomatoes.  I wasn't expecting much more than a bitter old cucumber but it really was delightful.  One of the tomatoes was a bit juicy but that's what my tomato colored flannel shirt is for.

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<snip>

Note to Self: when you add parm and wine, cut the salt!

 

I use cottage cheese in lasagna by choice. I tried ricotta one time. It's a bit more expensive, and I had always coveted it, but was disappointed when I tried it. Then again, there are many grades of ricotta, so perhaps I shouldn't give up on this whey cheese.

I'm not sure the wine contributed any salt or perception of salt, but I've certainly learned the same thing about parmesan cheese: it adds plenty of salt on its own! The cottage cheese may have added some also.

I too have been unimpressed by ricotta so far, but I have some sitting in my fridge right now. Hope springs eternal. :-)

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Nancy Smith, aka "Smithy"
HosteG Forumsnsmith@egstaff.org

"Every day should be filled with something delicious, because life is too short not to spoil yourself. " -- Ling (with permission)

"There comes a time in every project when you have to shoot the engineer and start production." -- author unknown

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LiamsAunt--Spag. and meatballs.  My favorite meal.  Great picture!

 

Kay--Your grouper looks delicious. 

 

TFTC and Smithy--My husband HATES ricotta cheese.  I've tried a ton of different commercial brands.  He finds it bland (even when I doctor it up) and likens it to Elmer's Glue lol.  I've given up and I always use cottage cheese in place of it.  Maybe someday I'll make some here at home, but it can't be that much different and then I'd be stuck with a bunch of homemade ricotta lol.

 

 

Venison cabbage rolls and salad.  Buttered egg noodles on the side.  Oh and that's a rib.  I like to put ribs in-between the rolls.  Gives them a smokey flavor.  

 

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Taco night with a new guacamole recipe

 

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Edited by Shelby (log)
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Chicken satays with peanut sauce and fresh pickled cucumber.

Served with gado gado salad platter.

Yesterday I marinated some 2 cm cubes of thigh fillet in a mix of ground coriander, cumin, turmeric, minced garlic, soy sauce, lemongrass paste and peanut oil. Today they get threaded onto soaked bamboo skewers, and are destined for the barbecue.

For the salad, I hard boil eggs, cool, peel and cut into quarters. I get a steamer going and steam in the following order : small potatoes, trimmed green beans, shredded cabbage and snow peas. Drain, cut potatoes when cool and reserve all. I heat a small pan and fry cubes of tofu in peanut oil. Drain on paper towels.

The peanut sauce has evolved over the years from a recipe in a 30 year old cookbook- "The Cooking of Southeast Asia " published in 1984....

In a small sauce pan I heat crunchy peanut butter and water, then add minced garlic. When the mixture boils and thickens, I turn off the heat and add lemon juice, brown sugar, soy sauce and chilli paste, and a little coconut milk, all to taste. Half of this gets thinned with some of the rice wine and sugar mix from the cucumber pickle (below) to make the salad dressing, the rest is a dipping sauce.

The cucumbers get cored, quartered and finely sliced, I add a de seeded chilli, some grated ginger and diced red onion, then pour over a mix of rice wine vinegar, sugar and salt which has been heated to dissolve the sugar.

I place the salad veggies, the tofu, and a few lettuce leaves on a plate, top with bean sprouts, then drizzle the dressing over.

Fire up barbie, grill satays until just cooked. Serve on lettuce leaves, with peanut sauce and cucumber pickle in bowls on the side.

Eat.

image.jpeg

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Cottage cheese in lasagna offends my Italian sensibilities. I make lasagna regularly and it's never salty. And I make sausage lasagna 99% of the time. Use lower fat mozz if you're worried and don't add salt to your sauce (if you make your own that is).

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Eating through Sunday...

I made a big pot of chicken broth from pastured chicken frames. Had multiple bowls of the broth just as-is (with or without a bit more salt added in) or with nothing more than chopped scallions in it.

Pic of just one of the bowls I had:

DSCN6917a_600.jpg

Very satisfying to just sip and drink hot broth like this, again and again.

Fresh fettucine w/ Hazan-style tomato sauce & grated Parmigiano Reggiano.

DSCN6921a_800.jpg

Salad of red oak leaf and red curly leaf lettuces w/ parsley leaflets & de-skinned simply cooked Russian Banana fingerlings; dressed w/ Alziari EV olive oil, balsamic vinegar, black pepper, Maldon salt.

DSCN6932a_800.jpg

I had several helpings of this (from a big bowl of it) over a period.

Various cheeses & semolina bread plus this-and-that at various times.

Host's note: this topic is continued in Dinner 2015 (Part 6)

Edited by Smithy (log)
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