Korean Fried Chicken

For the tenders:
2 chicken breasts (cut into 15 tenders)
Buttermilk (enough to coat the chicken)
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon dijon mustard
1 1/2 cups flour
3 tablespoons Korean chili powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
Vegetable oil (enough to fill a small, deep pot for frying)

For the sauce:
2 tablespoons gochujang paste
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon honey (or agave)
½ teaspoon sesame oil
2 teaspoons dijon mustard

First, place the chicken tenders in a medium sized bowl. Pour enough buttermilk into the bowl to submerge the chicken. Add the soy sauce and dijon mustard. Stir thoroughly and let sit for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, in a shallow dish, combine the flour, Korean chili powder, salt, and pepper.

Heat the oil over medium high heat. When a chopstick dipped into the oil sizzles, you’re ready to start frying.

Dredge each chicken tender in the flour mixture, coating thoroughly. Then dip the chicken tender back into the buttermilk. Dredge in the flour mixture a second time, and gently place into the hot oil. Fry until the chicken is golden brown. Remove to a cooling rack placed over a baking sheet.

Repeat the double-dipping/dredging and frying with the remaining pieces of chicken. When you’re done frying the chicken, combine the gochujang, soy sauce, agave, sesame oil, and dijon mustard for the dipping sauce. Serve immediately–maybe alongside some French fries if you’re having yourself an extra little splurge!

Drunken Noodles (Pad Kee Mao)

For the chicken & marinade:
2 tablespoons water
12 ounces sliced chicken thighs or chicken breast (340g)
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon oil
2 teaspoons cornstarch

For the rest of the dish:
8 ounces wide dried rice noodles (225g)
1 1/2 teaspoons brown sugar (dissolved in 1 tablespoon hot water)
2 teaspoons soy sauce (Thai soy sauce preferred)
1 teaspoon dark soy sauce
1 tablespoon fish sauce
2 teaspoons oyster sauce
pinch ground white pepper
3 tablespoons vegetable or canola oil (divided)
3 cloves garlic (sliced)
1/4 teaspoon fresh grated ginger
2 shallots (sliced, about 1/3 cups)
1 scallion (julienned into 3-inch pieces)
4 Thai red chili peppers (deseeded and julienned)
1 cup holy basil or Thai basil (loosely packed)
5 to 6 pieces baby corn (split in half, optional)
2 teaspoons Shaoxing wine

Work the 2 tablespoons of water into the sliced chicken with your hands until the chicken absorbs the liquid. Add 1 teaspoon soy sauce, 1 teaspoon oil, and 2 teaspoons cornstarch, and mix until the chicken is evenly coated. Set aside for 20 minutes.

Follow the directions on the rice noodle package to prepare your noodles. What we usually do is prepare a stainless steel bowl with hot tap water to soak the noodles for about 15 minutes. Then we just drain them and set aside for cooking.

Stir together the dissolved brown sugar mixture, soy sauces, fish sauce, oyster sauce, and white pepper in a small bowl and set aside.

Heat your wok until it’s close to smoking, and spread 2 tablespoons of oil around the perimeter of the wok. Add the chicken and let it sear for 1 minute on each side until it’s about 90% cooked. Remove from the wok and set aside. If the heat was high enough and you seared the meat correctly, your wok should be still clean with nothing sticking to it. If not, you can wash the wok to prevent the rice noodles from sticking.

Continue with the wok on high heat and add 1 tablespoon of oil, along with the garlic and grated ginger.

After a few seconds, add the shallots. Stir fry for 20 seconds and add the scallions, chili peppers, basil, baby corn and shaoxing wine. Stir-fry for another 20 seconds and add in the rice noodles. Use a scooping motion to mix everything for another minute until the noodles warm up.

Next, add the prepared sauce mixture and stir-fry at the highest heat for about 1 minute until the noodles are uniform in color. Take care to use your metal spatula to scrape the bottom of the wok to prevent sticking.

Add the seared chicken and stir-fry for another 1 to 2 minutes.

Thai Grilled Pork Skewers (Moo Ping)

2 pounds boneless pork shoulder, trimmed of surface fat
6 medium garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons finely minced fresh cilantro stems
1/3 cup firmly packed light or dark brown sugar
3 tablespoons fish sauce
1 tablespoon soy sauce
2 tablespoons peanut oil
Ground white pepper
1/3 cup coconut milk
Chili-lime sauce (jaew), to serve

Place the pork on a large plate and freeze until the meat is firm and partially frozen, 1 to 1 1/2 hrs. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, stir together the garlic, cilantro, sugar, fish sauce, soy sauce, oil and 1/2 teaspoon white pepper.

Using a sharp chef’s knife, slice the partially frozen pork into pieces about ? inch thick. The slices will be irregularly shaped; cut them into strips 1 to 1¼ inches wide (it’s fine if the strips are not uniform). Add the pork to the marinade and mix with your hands until evenly coated. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or up to 12 hours.

Thread the pork onto ten 10- to 12-inch metal skewers, evenly dividing the meat and scrunching it together and packing it quite tightly. If some pieces are too wide, too wispy or awkwardly shaped, fold the meat or tuck in the edges as you skewer. Place on a rimmed baking sheet or in a large baking dish, cover and refrigerate while you prepare the grill.

Prepare a charcoal or gas grill. For a charcoal grill, ignite a large chimney of coals, let burn until lightly ashed over, then distribute the coals evenly over one side of the grill bed; open the bottom grill vents. Heat the grill, covered, for 5 to 10 minutes, then clean and oil the grate. For a gas grill, turn all burners to high and heat, covered, for 15 minutes, then clean and oil the grate.

Place the skewers on the hot side of the grill (if using charcoal) and cook until lightly charred, about 3 minutes. Using tongs, flip the skewers, then brush with some of the coconut milk. Cook until the second sides are lightly charred, about another 3 minutes. Flip the skewers again and continue to cook, occasionally brushing with coconut milk and turning every couple of minutes, until deeply charred on both sides, about another 5 to 6 minutes. Transfer to a platter and serve with the sauce.

Tip: Don’t thread the meat loosely on the skewers. The pieces should be scrunched together somewhat tightly. This helps guard against overcooking. If you’re using a charcoal grill, don’t push the meat all the way to the bottom of the skewers; the protruding handle end of the skewers may prevent you from being able to position the meat directly over the coals.

Malaysian Beef Satay

16-20 bamboo skewers, soaked in water
2 lbs beef, sirloin, cut into 1/4-inch thick, 3/4-1-inch cubes
1 small cucumber, cut into small pieces
1 red onion, cut into quarters
Malaysian rice cakes, optional, cut into bite size pieces

Marinade:
1 teaspoon chili powder
2 tablespoons coriander powder
2 teaspoons turmeric powder
10 shallots, peeled, cut and halved
3 cloves garlic, peeled
4 stalks lemongrass, white part only, cut into 1-inch length
4 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon salt
4 tablespoons oil
1-2 tablespoon water

Spicy Peanut Dipping Sauce:
5 tablespoons oil
3/4 tablespoon seedless tamarind pulp, soaked in 3 1/2 tablespoons water
3/4 cup roasted peanuts, skins removed and coarsely blended
3/4 cup water
Sugar, to taste
Salt, to taste

Spice Paste:
1 tablespoon oil
5-6 tablespoons chili powder
1 1/2 tablespoons coriander powder
3/4 teaspoon cumin powder
3 stalks lemongrass, white part only, cut into 1-inch length
3/4- inch galangal, sliced
4 cloves garlic, peeled
3 shallots, peeled
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
salt and sugar to taste

Blend all the ingredients in Marinade into a smooth paste. Heat up some oil in a wok, stir-fry the Marinade until fragrant and the oil slightly separates from it. Transfer out and set aside.

Marinate the beef pieces with the Marinade overnight. Keep in the refrigerator.

Spicy Peanut Dipping Sauce:

Extract the juice from the tamarind pulp, discard the pulps. Blend the Spice Paste ingredients into a smooth paste. Add some water if needed.

Heat up the oil in a pan, stir-fry the spice paste until fragrant, turn the heat to medium-high and continue cooking until the oil slightly separates.

Add in the tamarind juice, peanuts, water, stir well and bring it to a quick boil. Cover the pan, turn the heat to low and simmer for another 5-10 minutes. Add sugar and salt sugar to taste. Dish out and set aside.

Making and Cooking Beef Satay:

Make the satay skewers with 3-4 pieces of the marinated beef threaded onto each bamboo skewer. Repeat until you use up all the meat. Grill the satay over a charcoal grill or outdoor gas grill until both sides are slightly charred and the meat is cooked through.

Malaysian Chicken Satay

2 lbs. boneless and skinless chicken thigh and leg meat
Bamboo skewers, soaked in cold water for 2 hours
1 cucumber, cut into small pieces
1 small onion, quartered
oil, for basting

Chicken Satay Marinade:

3 tablespoons oil
2 stalks lemongrass, white parts only
2 cloves garlic, peeled
6 small shallots or pearl onions, peeled
2 teaspoons turmeric powder
1 teaspoon coriander powder
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 tablespoon salt or more to taste
2 tablespoons sugar or honey

Cut the chicken meat into small cubes. Set aside.

Blend all the he Marinade ingredients in a food processor. Add a little water if needed.

For the chicken satay dipping sauce, please click here: satay peanut sauce recipe.

Combine the chicken and the Marinade together, stir to mix well. Marinate the chicken for 6 hours in the fridge, or best overnight. When ready, thread 3-4 pieces of the chicken meat onto the bamboo skewers.

Grill the chicken satay skewers for 2-3 minutes on each side until the meat is fully cooked and the surface is nicely charred, on both sides. Baste and brush with some oil while grilling. Serve hot with peanut sauce the fresh cucumber pieces and onions.