Friday, June 17, 2011

Sweet and Sour Crispy Pork with Pineapple and Mushrooms

So, this is basically one of the best dishes I know how to make. I really love Chinese food, and ate so much Chinese food growing up, that when left to my own devices, I seem to want to make Chinese food. I think this style of cooking would be Cantonese, I think. I'm not really an expert though on such things. A couple of key things to keep in mind with this dish... after frying the battered pork, put the cooked pieces in a 320F oven until ready to serve, also keep the sauce separate from the battered pork until serving. It maintains the deliciousness of both components. Also, it's really important, if shallow frying, to fry in small batches, turn the meat often, and to spoon small amounts of additional batter onto the pork as its frying. Also, I think there is a wide margin for variance in the sauce as long as it has nice sweet and sour flavours.

Look at that saucy pile of delicious mushrooms and fresh pinapple.

Just look at all that meat. So smooth. So fine.



2 Pork Tenderloins (Medium Small Chunks)
2 Cups Corn Starch
2 Eggs
1 Tbsp Sesame Oil
1 Tsp White Pepper
2 Tsp Ground Ginger
1 Tbsp Granulated Garlic Powder
Salt and Pepper
Beef Stock


1/2 Fresh Pinapple (Medium Dice)
2 Small Carrots (Finely Sliced)
1/2 Onion (Large Slices)
1 Portobello Mushroom (Large Chunks)
8 Medium White Mushrooms (Thickly Sliced)


250ml Cantonese Garlic Chili Chicken Sauce
30ml Oyster Sauce
80ml HP Sauce
30ml Rice Wine Vinegar
10ml Sesame Oil


1. Add the corn starch, spices and oil to a mixing bowl and beat the eggs into it, once it is well mixed, add the pork. The batter should be thick and coat the meat well. If it's too thick to stir, add small amounts of beef stock until it loosens enough to stir, but still thick enough to coat the meat. Cover and place in fridge to chill for at least 30 minutes before frying.

2. Heat frying oil to 375F, carefully spoon battered meat into hot oil, do not overcrowd. Turn meat often, spoon small amounts of additional batter onto meat as it frys, turn meat to quickly set extra batter. Cook until batter is nicely browned. Remove to plate, and repeat until meat is cooked. Slide the cooked battered pork on a baking sheet into a 320F oven for about 20 minutes before serving. Sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper after removing it from the oven.

3. While the meat is in the oven, prepare the sauce. Heat sesame oil in a work on high heat. Add the carrots and onions. Stir fry and cook for about a minute. Add the mushrooms, stir fry for about another minute. Add the combined liquid ingredients to the work. Cook for 30 seconds. Add the pineapple. Remove from heat, set aside until serving.

Serve with jasmine rice.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Flank Steak with Baked Potato

So, normally I would have taken a slightly better better photo of the food, but we started eating. Really, this posting should be about how much I like the Grill Pan and Induction Cooktop combo that I got two weeks ago. I previously made some really nice Strip Steaks and Spanish Chorizo, but I didn't bother blogging about them, and then, last night, Flank Steak. And I must say, the Strip Steaks and the Flank Steaks were easily the best steaks I've ever made at home. Induction and Cast Iron really is the way to go. Also, not to worry, this plate of meat, potatoes, milk-fat, and sugar was preceded by a simple green salad.

Mushroom Risotto

So, I think I'm probably going to make lots and lots of risotto before I ever decide to make a recipe, also the internet is so saturated with risotto recipes, that one more doesn't really seem to be neccessary. However, this is a fairly standard mushroom risotto that I made using the leftover "asparagus broth" that I "made" a few nights back when I made asparagus to go with the crispy haddock. Also, I made this with white stuffer mushrooms that I roasted in the oven first, and real mushroom powders that I got from Pistol River Mushrooms a while back which I've been fairly liberal in using, and I'm sure you'll notice them sprinkled throughout previous blog posts, and until they're all gone, you'll probably continue to see them. There's really not much to say that hasn't already been said ad nauseam about Risotto, so with that in mind... the end.

Perogies or Pierogi or Perogys

So, one of the things that my girl recalls from her childhood, is her mother making her perogies, from scratch. And being the sentimental old fool that I am, and being half-Polish, and not really embracing my heritage in my cooking, I decided to make some perogies. A quick scan of the wikipedia article on the subject shows a great deal of cultural variance, and even a variety of names that they go by. I guess I don't really care if they are originally Polish in origin, they're pretty delicious in general, and I enjoy eating them, and now also enjoy making them too. Rather than provide a full recipe, I'm only going to provide the recipe that I used to make the dough. I'm not entirely happy with the fillings that I made, so I won't bother writing up a full recipe for them. I made two kinds though, one was a baked then mashed potato, mixed with fried onion and cheddar cheese, it was kind of rustic and delicious, but probably could have stood to be smoother. The other was a turkey sausage and sauerkraut and dill filling, not bad in general, but very in your face, and could have used something to bind it together better.



250g Unbleached Bread Flour
120ML Sour Cream
40ML Melted Butter
1 Egg
1 Tsp Salt


1. Sift the dry ingredients.
2. Add the remaining ingredients, pull into dough, knead, cover and leave on counter 1 hour before using.
3. Cut into sections, roll to 4mm thickness, cut into squares, or circles, fill, fold over and press to seal.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Crispy Pan Fried Haddock with Jalapeno Mango Salsa, Asparagus, and Kaffir Lime Scented Jasmine Rice

That could've been plated a lot better Michael... fail.

So, I finally started buying food again, and I had a mango in the fridge, and frozen haddock in the freezer, and dry rice in the cupboard, so this happened. I did go to the grocery store and spend $3.16 on Jalapeno peppers and Asparagus to make the meal a little better. The meal was good, but still had some flaws, my girl said the rice smelled like Fruit Loops though, and frankly, she wasn't wrong. Also, I owe some credit to my older sister for this meal as I was discussing it with her earlier that evening and she suggested add the kaffir lime leaves to the rice. If she had a blog, you should read it.


4 Frozen Haddock Filets
1 Green Mango
1 Jalapeno Pepper
1 Tsp Ground Ginger
1 Cup Jasmine Rice
6 Kaffir Lime Leaves
1.25 Cups Water
30g Butter
1 Tbsp Olive Oil
40 ML Chinese Rose Wine
1 Bunch of Asparagus
1 Lemon
Salt and Pepper

Kaffir Lime Leaf Scented Jasmine Rice

1. Combine jasmine rice with water in rice cooker at ratio of 1.25 unit of water to 1 unit of rice. Add about 6 dried kaffir lime leaves for every cup of rice. Remove leaves before serving.

Mango and Jalapeno Salsa

1. Break down a green mango, and mince till smooth. Finely dice 1 jalapeno pepper and combine with the mango. Add 1 Tsp ground ginger, and 1/2 Tsp ea salt and pepper. Stir.

Crispy Pan Fried Haddock

1. Melt 20g butter and 1 Tbsp Olive oil in a frying pan over low heat. Add frozen haddock filets, skin side down. Cook until defrosted, turn flesh side down, season skin side. Cook until softened throughout.

2. Tip liquid from frying pan and reserve. Increase to high heat, add 1 Tsp olive oil. Cook haddock on both sides until crispy. Season on both sides. Remove fish and reserve.

3. Add reserved liquid to hot pan, add chinese rose wine, reduce for 1 minute. Spoon pan sauce over fish to serve.


1. Clean and trim asparagus, boil in salted water until tender crisp. Drain and reserve water, makes decent beginning of vegetable stock. Remove asparagus, add 10g butter and reduce to medium heat. Return 8 stalks to saucepan, and saute in butter for 1 minute. Enough for 2-3 servings. Add 1 tsp lemon juice to stalks to serve.