The day I attempted these Salmon Kabobs with Mustard and Dill was just one of those days where nothing goes your way. It wasn’t that the recipe was all that difficult. I forgot to thaw the salmon, a move that nearly cost me dinner. Cooking in a bad mood can be hazardous to your significant other, roommate or sous chef’s health. Despite a few missteps and a near disastrous thawing incident involving running tap water and a microwave, the dish turned out pretty flavorful. I will likely give it another shot this summer.
You will need:
Cut the salmon into ¾ inch cubes. Season with salt and pepper.
Grind the garlic, finely chop the dill leaves, and place them in a small bowl with the mustard, lime juice and whisk until blended. Set aside about ¼ of the marinade. Pour the rest over the salmon cubes, stirring them until they are well coated. Let this marinate for about 10 minutes.
Thread the cubes of salmon and tomatoes on the skewers. Broil or grill them for 10 minutes, turning them once.
Use the reserved marinade along with the heavy cream. Season with salt and pepper if needed. I added a bit more dill and mustard to kick-up the flavor a notch. Serve the kabobs with the marinade along with white rice.
I have never been a huge fan of meatloaf. There are only a few versions that tickle my taste buds. Some of you may remember my Vegetarian Garden Loaf with Maple Glaze, gluten-free and vegan dish that tastes as good as it sounds. My stepfather can also make a mean meatloaf. This recipe for Bacon Wrapped Meatloaf from the Rantings of an Amateur Chef inspired me to give it a shot myself.
I took my own luxuries, incorporating some elements from my stepfather’s recipe. I found the recipe on the Amateur Chef’s blog called for too many eggs. I had to add quite a bit of bread crumbs to soak up all the liquid. Although I didn’t do this, my step father adds Quaker oats to his recipe in place of some of the bread crumbs which actually does a nice job binding all the meat together as well.
I’m so glad I gave this recipe a shot, because it was melt in your mouth delicious, and how can you go wrong with anything wrapped in bacon? I used pasture-raised meat from Seven Bridges Farm.
Here’s what you’ll need for my version:
For the sauce you will need:
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Line a boiler pan or roasting pan with rack. This will allow the fat to drain away.
Place the bread slices in a large bowl and pour milk over it. Allow the bread to soak up the milk. You can mix the milk and bread together with your hands to help it absorb the liquid.
Put the meat, milk-soaked bread, onions, parmesan cheese, salt, pepper, eggs and parsley in a bowl. Mix it all together with your hands. Form the mixture into a large loaf form on the roasting rack. Stretch the bacon out so it’s thinner and lay the slices over the top of and around the sides of the loaf until it’s completely covered.
Press down a bowl-shaped trough into the center of the loaf. Pour the sauce into the trough in the middle of the loaf. Bake until the center of the loaf reaches at least 160 degrees. Let the meatloaf rest for about 10 minutes before slicing it.
Whenever I think of or see the recipe for this Cobb Salad dip, I think of Cobb’s Hill, my regular running spot. That’s ironic since eating dip is a reason for me to go running. This recipe from Chow is completely worth every calorie though.
I doubled the recipe for a larger group and added some tomatoes to the recipe. Here’s what you’ll need for a single batch:
Mix the sour cream, blue cheese, lemon juice, salt, parsley and Worcestershire in a medium bowl and stir well to combine.
For maximum crispness, I recommend baking the bacon on a foil lined pan at 350 degrees until crisp and placing it on a paper towel-lined plate to drain the grease.
While the Chow recipe calls for folding the avocado and scallions into the dip, I just topped it with the avocado, scallions, bacon and diced tomatoes.
This blog combines an old favorite with a new goodie. Many of my friends have raved about this Avocado, Bean and Tomato Salad recipe which was passed down to me from my long-time cooking and exercise buddy Jill. Typically I will grill some chicken or shrimp to top this salad off. This time I decided to spice things up with this Garlic Skewered Shrimp recipe which I discovered on the Rantings of an Amateur Chef blog.
Begin by marinating your shrimp. For this you will need:
Peel and devein the shrimp. Mix the ingredients for the marinade in a large bowl.
Peel the 12 to 15 cloves of garlic. Heat up a small pan of water and bring it to a boil. Blanch the cloves for three minutes. Drain them and run cold water over them. Set the garlic cloves aside.
While the shrimp marinates, you can prepare the salad. You will need:
Whisk the lime juice, olive oil, scallions and garlic in a large bowl until creamy. Add the diced avocado and toss lightly.
Add the beans, tomatoes, salt and toss again. Let stand at room temperature.
Now begin preparing your shrimp for the grill. Skewer the shrimp and garlic cloves, in a ratio that allows the garlic to be evenly distributed among the kabobs.
Serve the Avocado, Bean and Tomato salad over the mixed greens and add the shrimp and garlic skewers last.
As an aside, here’s a little snippet of the inspiration for the blog title.
Call me a cheater for this one, but these cupcakes were too cute not to share. My friend Tra and Jay’s Sesame Street cupcakes are perfect for your next kids (or grown up kids) party, and they aren’t too hard to make. I tried to Google a recipe for you to follow, but nothing online could really compare to these.
All you need is some cupcakes and a couple of cans of frosting. Mix food coloring into four separate bowls of frosting. Create red for Elmo, green for Oscar the Grouch, blue for Cookie Monster and yellow for Big Bird. Jay came up with a frosting technique which made the cupcakes looked furry and they added some crystal sugar sprinkles to give them some shine.
Cookie Monster is eating a Chips-a-Hoy cookie, which is cut in half, and frosted to look like it’s in his mouth. Oscar is wearing a vanilla Golden Oreo cookie trash can lid on his head. Elmo’s mouth is made with a traditional chocolate Oreo. And the pièce de résistance, Big Bird, was made with a strategically cut marshmallow. Note how the inside of Big Bird’s mouth is frosted red and his purple and blue eyebrows really make him stand out. White frosting and chocolate M&M’s were enlisted as eyeballs, and an orange M&M serves as Elmo’s nose.
Don’t worry. While they are too cute, you’ll be able to find it in your heart to eat one.
Last month, I regaled you with tales from my first ever wine and food pairing event with an intimate group of classy ladies. The bar was set so high that first evening, I wasn’t sure how we could top it. I should have known this group was up for the challenge. I will try to do the menu justice.
Having received a bottle of Dr. Konstantin Frank’s Gewurtraminer for my birthday, I opted to make a Beef Satay with a peanut dipping sauce.
As always, I used this Emeril Legasse recipe as a loose guide.
Of the ingredients I did use in the sauce recipe, I basically doubled them, added some Hoisin sauce, and adjusted the ratio until the sauce tasted more Asian than peanut butter. Emeril’s recipe calls for:
While the meat marinates, mix the sauce in a small bowl. Skewer the strips of steak. Broil them on low for about four to five minutes or until medium-rare. Serve with the dipping sauce.
Now for the rest of the offerings:
Chiara (@chiaraaamai) provided some incredible Italian classics. Her antipasti included a caprese salad, Italian salami, Yancy’s Fancy Finger Lakes Champagne Aged Cheddar Cheese, and crusty baguette, slightly toasted and covered in ricotta cheese, prosciutto and peaches, drizzled with a balsamic glaze. Her wine pairings included an exquisite 2008 Cantina Zaccagnini il vino ‘dal tralcetto’ Montepulciano d’Abruzzo Cerasuolo. I was delighted with the piece of the vine which was tied around the bottleneck.
Breanna (@bmbanford) brought up the dessert end of things with her Puff Pastry with Brie Cheese and Blackberry Jam which you can find on her Pinterest page. This paired quite lovely with Segura Viudas Brut Reserva champagne.
And with a gorgeous location provided by Lynn, I am unsure how we can possibly top this again. We’ll see soon enough though with our next pairing scheduled in just a few weeks!
The very first time I laid eyes on this Pepper-Crusted Filet Minion recipe from Chow, I knew I had to try it. What sold me was the béarnaise sauce, something I’ve never had before. Considered to be the “child” of Hollandaise sauce, I knew it was probably not a wise choice for my hips, but I can rationalize cooking anything once for the sake of the blog. In the battle between eating healthy and getting inspired to try something new for the blog, you my fine readers, won out.
I would highly recommend you try this sometime when you want to eat like French royalty. Just don’t take your eye off the sauce or you’ll wind up with scrambled eggs.
In my typical fashion, I deviated from the steak recipe. Basically I just took a flank steak, coated it in some butter and covered it in black peppercorns. We cooked it medium rare on the grill. I’m sure if you follow the recipe, it will be just as good if not better, but who has the time to get technical?
Well, you better be, because the béarnaise sauce is a bit of a bear, but it’s worth it. You will need:
In a medium frying pan, combine the vinegar, wine, shallots, tarragon stems and crushed peppers and bring them to a simmer over medium heat. Cook until the liquid is reduced to just over two tablespoons. Strain the vinegar mixture with a fine mesh strainer. Be sure to press on the solids to extract as much of the liquid as possible. Discard the solids.
Fill a medium saucepan with about one-inch of water and bring it to a bare simmer over low heat. This is important. If the water is too hot, your sauce will tend to get clumpy.
Add the egg yolks to the vinegar mixture and whisk to combine. Set the vinegar-yolk mixture over the simmering water and cook it, whisking constantly until the yolks thicken and the mixture forms ribbons when you lift the whisk from the bowl.
Be sure to check that your water has not boiled away by periodically removing the bowl from the saucepan. Do not let the water boil or your eggs will curdle.
Begin whisking in the butter pieces one at a time, making sure each piece is melted before adding the next piece. Continue until all the butter has been added. Remove the sauce from the heat. Add a few drops of water if it’s too thick.
Whisk in the chopped tarragon leaves and chervil (if using). Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve over steak.
First, let me apologize for my short blogging hiatus. Moving, Easter and celebrating my 35th birthday have monopolized the past few weeks of my life. Now that I’ve got my kitchen all set up, there should be plenty of fodder for mouth-watering blogs coming your way!
This blog is inspired by my co-worker Justine’s cake pops. She whipped up a bride and groom-themed batch of these bite-sized morsels for a recent bridal shower and they were a huge hit! According to theKitchn…
“You bake up a cake, let it cool, tear it into fine crumbs, stir in something to hold it all together, and roll it in balls.”
You can roll your own cake pops, or you can purchase cake pop pans, eliminating the need to crumble the cake and mix it with frosting.
The final step entails sticking a lollipop stick into the cake pops and dipping them into melted white, milk or dark chocolate and decorating them. Justine’s groom cake balls are coated in white chocolate, followed by some strategic dips in chocolate, and topped off with buttons and a bow tie. The bride cake balls are dipped in white chocolate and then drizzled with more white chocolate to create the lace-like look. These irresistible, eye-catching treats are sure to impress!
When it comes to brainstorming blog titles, I often seek out something related to music, whether it’s a play-off a song title or a straight up rip-off. This blog title is borrowed from a King Curtis song that a foodie like me can’t help but love. But it’s not accurate seeing as though I’m blogging about a Jambalaya recipe, which is actually Louisiana Creole dish with Spanish and French influence. Perhaps this Carpenter’s song which I’d never heard until Googling for song titles about Jambalaya is more accurate.
Now take a hard left from all that music talk and authentic recipe mumbo jumbo and you’ll find yourself at this Chicken and Smoked Andouille Jambalaya recipe by Chow. I made this a few Sundays ago and it warmed my soul. It also made enough to feed an army, so invite guests or be ready for leftovers. Don’t be intimidated by the ingredients list; half of it is just seasonings.
You can mix the spice mix in advance
Mix all the ingredients together in a small bowl and set aside.
For the jambalaya you will need:
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees and arrange the rack to the lower third of the oven.
Heat the oil in an ovenproof pot or Dutch oven. I cooked the chicken in Dutch oven and then transferred it to a larger pot once I realized how much food this recipe makes. Cook about 1/3 of the chicken in the pot until browned all over, or for about five to six minutes. Set aside. Cook the remaining chicken in two batches and set aside.
Remove and discard all but about ¼ cup of the fat from the pot. This is where I switched to a larger oven-proof soup pot. Add the butter and melt over medium heat. Cook the onions for about six minute or until they begin to brown.
Add the sausage and ham, half of the spice mix and stir to coat everything. Cook this mixture for about ten minutes or until the meat is browned and the onions are tender.
Add the bell peppers, celery, jalapeno, garlic, salt and the remainder of the spice mix. Cook for another ten minutes or until the bell peppers have softened.
Add the chicken and the juices that have accumulated in the bowl, the tomato sauce or crushed tomatoes, and tomato paste. Stir and bring to a boil. Add the rice, stock and bay leaves and stir to combine. Bring to a boil, cover with a tightfitting lid and transfer to the oven. Bake until all the liquid has been absorbed or for about 30 minutes.
Let it cool for about five minutes, and be sure to give it a good stir before serving to combine all the flavors.
As a food blogger, it’s rare I get the chance to cook the same meal twice. There are pros and cons to this. On the plus side, I don’t get into a food rut, I don’t tire of meals often, and I’m always inspired to discover new dishes. On the flip side of the coin, there’s something to be said about cooking something you’ve made many times. You know how it’s going to turn out, you don’t have to study the recipe quite as closely, and you don’t have to spend hours researching and cooking.
With a move on the horizon, I’m noticing I just don’t have time to pull out all the stops these days. I need something that’s healthy and delicious, and I need it fast. That’s where the oldies but goodies like Mexican pizza tend to resurface. Think tacos on a pizza shell and get creative. Here’s what I put on my pizza:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Drain most of the juice from the black beans and mashing them up a bit with a fork or spoon to create a consistency somewhere between baked and twice baked beans. You can also use twice baked black beans, I just grabbed the wrong can in the store. Spread the black beans on the pizza crust. Next add the corn, tomatoes and scallions. Top with taco cheese.
Slice and grill the jalapeno peppers. Distribute evenly over the pizza. Bake for about 25 to 30 minutes, finishing off the pizza with a broil on low heat for about four to five minutes until brown and slightly crispy. Allow the pizza to cool before slicing. Top with avocado and sour cream.
I’ve recently developed a love affair with the herb Tarragon, also known as dragons-wort, a name which makes me love it even more. It began with this Reader’s Digest recipe for Salmon with Tarragon Mayo, served over couscous mixed with a variety of veggies. For being as easy to prepare as it was, the creamy herb sauce gives this otherwise very light and healthy meal a complex and rich flavor. I would highly recommend you put it on your list for the summer.
For the salmon, you will need:
For the couscous, you will need:
Spray a skillet with cooking oil and place the salmon in it on medium heat. Pour wine over the salmon and add the bay leaves and lemon zest. Bring to a boil and reduce the heat. Cover and poach the salmon until just cooked; about five to six minutes. It should still be translucent in the center.
Make your sauce by stir together the mayonnaise, yogurt, grated lemon zest and tarragon in a small bowl, season with salt and pepper and mix. While the salmon is cooking, get about 1 ½ cups of water boiling in a pot or kettle. Also, prepare your vegetables; chop the tomatoes, watercress and scallions.
Pour the diluted fish broth over the couscous in a bowl and leave it for three to four minutes, or until the liquid has dissolved. Fluff the couscous with a fork and stir in the chopped tomatoes, scallions and watercress. Drizzle the olive oil and juice of one lemon over the mixture and stir to blend everything together and season with salt and pepper.
Serve the salmon warm, over the couscous, topped with the tarragon mayo.
Being part French, I was curious to try this recipe for Coq Au Vin, which translates to Rooster with Wine. In my typical foodie fashion, I deviated from the traditional variation and found a quick and easy short cut. I didn’t use Rooster or even a whole chicken, as many recipes call for, and I used Wegmans’ red cooking wine verses the Burgundy which the traditional variation calls for. Instead I followed the recipe from this blog. It was not intimidating and it turned out phenomenal.
The depth of flavor in this dish was incredible, making me promise to use red wine in my cooking more often. As Jeanette recommended, I served it with the Roasted Broccoli and Cherry Tomatoes, which gave me my first opportunity to cook with Herbes de Provence. A combination of savory, fennel, basil, thyme and lavender, it’s basically like the French version of Chinese Five Spice, though there is apparently no solid evidence that the mixture originated in Provence, a region of southeastern France on the Mediterranean.
Don’t be intimidated by the length of the ingredients list. You will need:
Season the chicken breasts with salt and pepper and set aside.
Add olive oil to the pan and sauté until nicely browned on both sides; about three to four minutes on each side. Transfer to a plate and cover to keep warm.
Add the mushrooms, shallots and garlic to the skillet and sauté until brown, or for about four minutes. Add the wine, 1 ¼ cups of broth, bacon, thyme, tomato paste and one tablespoon parsley. Bring the mixture to a boil, stirring occasionally. Add the chicken pieces, bring the liquid to a simmer and then lower the heat. Cook covered for 15 minutes.
In the meantime, mix the flour with ¼ cup of broth, stirring until smooth. Add the flour mixture to the skillet and cook until the sauce thickens; about three to four minutes. Season the final dish with salt and pepper to taste. Spoon the sauce over the chicken and garnish with parsley (if you’re fancy like that).
The things I do for a good meal sometimes make me wonder. Last week, it was a wild goose chase for plum preserves. After a thorough of search my East Avenue Wegmans store, a few natural food and boutique stores, and Wegmans website, I determined the only type of plum preserve to be found was going to be mixed in with some other type of berry. A Google search netted me a line of plum preserves at Walmart, which I could have shipped to me for merely $30.
On a trip to Pittsford Wegmans for fish for tuna tartare, I decided to take one final look for the elusive plum preserves. A trip through Nature’s Marketplace yielded no results. Not to be deterred, I made my way to the regular peanut butter and jelly section. There, on the top shelf, to my disbelief, was ONE jar of Bonne Maman Plum Preserves, straight from France! Thank goodness, because I was bound and determined to cook these Balsamic-Plum Glazed Pork Chops.
The flavors in the sauce were matched only by the tenderness of the pasture-raised, vegetarian fed pork chops from Heiden Valley Farms in Lima. I served it with roasted shallot and garlic mashed potatoes.
To re-create this, you will need:
Melt the butter in a large nonstick skillet over medium to high heat. Season the pork with ½ teaspoon of salt and pepper. Cook the pork for about 3 ½ minutes on each side, remove them from the pan and set them aside.
Coat the pan with cooking spray. Add the shallots and garlic to the pan and sauté for 30 seconds. Add the port wine (or Marsala wine) and vinegar to the pan and cook for 30 seconds, stirring occasionally. Stir in the remaining ¼ teaspoon of salt and the plum preserves. Cook for about 30 seconds or until smooth, stirring constantly.
Return the pork to the pan and cook to your desired degree of doneness. Turn the pork several times to coat it in the glaze.
Maybe I baked too many cookies over the holidays. Maybe I just don’t have the knack for baking. Whatever the reasoning, I took the easy way out when it came to making dessert to bring to a friend’s house the other night. I stumbled upon this Blueberry-White Chocolate Cream Ginger Tart recipe in an article in the Democrat and Chronicle about a pair of Rochester women who made the 2012 Pillsbury Bake-Off.
Just like in life, you get out of it what you put into it. A recipe this simple to make could never compare something you’d get at a bakery or something you slaved hours for hours, but there are surprisingly a lot of layers of flavor in this dessert and I would definitely make it again.
You will need:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Let the cookie dough stand at room temperature for 10 minutes to soften it. Spray a 12-inch pizza pan or a glass pie dish with non-stick cooking spray.
In a medium bowl, break up the cookie dough and add the flour, ground ginger, crystalized ginger, cinnamon and nutmeg. Knead the mixture with your hands until its well blended. Press the dough evenly into the pan or baking dish.
Bake the cookie for about 15 to 20 minutes or until it is golden brown. Cool for about 30 minutes.
To make the tart filling, microwave the white chips in the microwave for about one minute, stirring every 30 seconds, until they are melted and smooth. Add the cream cheese, lemon zest and stir or beat on high with a mixer on medium speed until smooth.
Spread the mixture over the cooled crust. Arrange blueberries over the cream cheese mixture and pour into the filling. Refrigerate this for one hour and cut it into wedges. Store it in the refrigerator.
I’m sure not many people will recognize the title of this blog as a lyric from Ween’s Your Party song. The song sets a scene…
“There were beverages laid out for the party. There were candy and spices and tricolored pastas. The meat carved was drawn from succulent juices, served on platters of the purest gold.”
I always dreamed about maybe throwing such a party. Thanks to three of my girlfriends, that dream came true last week with a spectacular evening of Wine and Food Pairing. After some research, I settled on a Tuna Tartare on Sesame Wonton Crisps paired with a Chardonnay/Pinot Grigio hybrid.
To make the crispy wonton, preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Cut the wonton squares on an angle to make two triangles and arrange them on the baking sheet. Spray or brush lightly with olive oil and sprinkle with sesame seeds. Bake the wonton until they are golden. Watch them because they burn easily. Allow them to cool.
For the tuna tartare, mix the tuna, green onions, sesame seeds, soy sauce, sesame oil, ginger, garlic and orange zest, cilantro and salt together in a medium bowl and mix well. Add the avocado and lime juice before you’re ready to serve.
Of course my girls were up for the challenge as well. Here’s a sampling of the other offerings at the party.
The more I learn about our food supply, the harder it is for me to find the right things to eat. There’s a lot to consider – is the food in season, has it spent days and weeks traveling across the country or world to reach me, how much gasoline was used to bring it to me, was the food treated with pesticides, did the animal it came from get access to green pastures, and is it produced in an environmentally-sustainable way? It’s a dilemma that seems to worsen the more educated I become.
I’m currently reading “To Buy or Not to Buy Organic: What You Need to Know to Choose the Healthiest, Safest, Most Earth-Friendly Food.” One of the most useful pieces of information in this book comes in the form of these two lists.
Dirty Dozen: Foods to Buy Organic
6. Nectarines, imported
7. Grapes, imported
8. Sweet bell peppers
10. Blueberries, domestic
12. Kale collard greens
Clean 15: Okay to Buy Non-Organic
This being said, it’s important to note that sometimes organic is not the gold standard. With the increased demand for organics has come a diluting of the standards that were supposed to distinguish organic food from non-organic. Many small, local farmers are finding it cost-prohibitive to obtain organic-certification, yet if you were to ask them about their growing practices, you may find they are holding themselves to an even higher standard that the government has put out. Sometimes it’s just a matter of asking.
The bottom line is, if you’re really committed to eating healthier and leaving a smaller footprint on the earth, it’s essential to do your homework and to strike balance between being a locavore and eating organically.
In the same vein of my blog on strata, here’s another culinary delight that’s easy, delish, and seemingly named after a random famous person. I don’t know why I’ve never cooked with Marsala wine before now. This Hungry Girl Recipe Swap for Chicken Marsala inspired me to try it. Although I didn’t follow the ingredients exactly, maximizing the calorie-saving potential, I did find it to be deceivingly rich for something so simple. It’s one of those meals that make cooking a joy.
For those of you watching your calories, I recommend you switch over to Hungry Girl’s website for the exact recipe. Otherwise, follow this version; double the recipe if you are feeding a family or want leftovers.
Cook the mushrooms in a skillet, coated with nonstick spray, on medium-high heat for about five to seven minutes or until the mushrooms soften. Move the mushrooms to the sides of the skillet, making room for the chicken in the middle of the skillet.
Season the chicken with salt, pepper and basil and place in the skillet. Cook for about six minutes, stirring the mushrooms occasionally. Flip the chicken, give the broth mixture a good stir, and add it to the skillet. Continue stirring the mushrooms and gravy until the sauce is thickened and the chicken is cooked through.
I’m not ashamed to admit that pretty much every recipe I write about is stolen from someone’s blog, a column in the newspaper, or from chefs I’ve worked with and restaurants I’ve cooked in. These sliders were inspired by the latter.
Going along with my latest quest for healthy fast-foods, I cooked these mini burgers using a meat roasting tray to allow the grease to drip off them, and I used wheat rolls to give this some semblance of wholesomeness. Topped with Sriracha mayonnaise, avocado, pepper jack cheese and grilled jalapeno peppers, it’s a perfect combination of hot and cool.
I paired the sliders with homemade sweet potato fries. They were pretty delicious despite being a little “blackened,” a polite term for burnt because I had the oven on a bit too high.
For the burgers you’ll need:
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Press the hamburger meat into six to eight equally sized patties. Place the patties in an oven-safe dish with a meat tray to allow the grease to drain and cook them for about 20 minutes or cooked throughout. During the final few minutes of cooking, top the burgers with the cheese to allow it to melt.
While the burgers cook, slice the avocados and fry them in a small skillet until the skin starts to blacken. Mix mayonnaise and Sriracha sauce to your liking.
Owning a wok has reduced the number of times I go out to eat for Chinese. The other night I went to Flavors of Asia in Rochester. I visit the restaurant so frequently that the waiter always recognizes me and remembers my favorite selections. On my recent trip to Flavors however, the waiter kept remarking how long it had been since I had eaten there.
That’s when I realized my wok was allowing me to take on dishes that I used to have to rely on Flavors for. The other day I decided to make Moo Shu Pork. The traditional Chinese version of this recipe consists of sliced or shredded pork, scrambled eggs, mushrooms, bamboo shoots, stir fried in sesame oil, ginger, garlic, scallions, soy sauce and rice cooking wine.
The mixture is served in Mandarin pancakes, topped with Hoisin sauce. Upon doing some research into making my own pancakes, I opted to take the easy way out and hit up the local Asian Market. Navigating through the store and trying to locate things was enough adventure for me.
I doubled this recipe and I most definitely took some shortcuts. It still tasted pretty darn good. Here’s what you’ll need to recreate this amazing dish:
Cut the pork into strips and combine it with two tablespoons of soy sauce, 1 tablespoon of sesame oil and the cornstarch. Heat the other tablespoon of sesame oil on medium-high heat in a wok or sauté pan. Cook the pork, stirring frequently.
In a separate pan, cook the scrambled eggs. Try to let the cook in a sheet. When the eggs are cooked, set them aside.
When the pork is about three-quarters of the way done, add the bean sprouts, green onion, mushrooms, bamboo strips and two tablespoons of soy sauce. Add the eggs at the end, breaking them up into smaller pieces as you stir them into the mixture.
Follow the directions for heating the Mandarin pancakes. Fill the center of a pancake with the Moo Shu mixture, top with Hoisin sauce and serve.