Sticky Sesame Cauliflower

Sesame Soy Sauce:
2 tsp. sesame oil
2 tsp fresh grated ginger
2 cloves of garlic , minced
1/4 cup tamari or soy sauce
1/3 cup maple syrup
1.5 tbsp rice vinegar
1 tsp sriracha
2 tsp cornstarch or 1.5 tsp tapioca starch
1/4 cup (59.15 ml) cold water

Cauliflower:
1/2 cup rice flour
3 tbsp tapioca or corn starch.
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
dash of black pepper and cayenne
1/2 cup (118.29 ml) water
2 tsp sesame oil
1 (265 g) small head of cauliflower, chopped into equal size florets

Garnish: sesame seeds and scallions

Sticky Sesame Sauce: Heat a skillet over medium heat. Add sesame oil, garlic and ginger. Cook the garlic ginger for a minute. Add the soy sauce, rice vinegar, maple and bring to boil. Mix cornstarch in the water and add this cornstarch slurry and bring to a boil to thicken, Take off heat.

Cauliflower: Preheat the oven to 425 deg F ( 220 C). Line a baking sheet or dish with parchment. In a large bowl add the dry ingredients for the batter and whisk well. Add the wet ingredients and min until smooth.

Add the cauliflower and mix to coat. This batter keeps thickening as it sits, so mix and toss quickly.

Transfer to the the lined baking sheet. and bake for 30 mins. Make the sticky sauce in the meanwhile if you havent yet.

Once baked, you can do one of the following:

1. Brush the sauce over the cauliflower florets and bake for additional 10 to 15 mins (time depends on how crisp and sticky you want the sauce)

2. Wait for a few mins then transfer the florets to the sauce. Mix gently to coat. Serve immediately or transfer to the baking sheet to bake for 10 to 15 mins.

Sprinkle black and white sesame seeds and chopped scallions and serve as is, or over rice or in lettuce wraps.

Note: you can substitute tofu for some of the cauliflower.

Chicken Mei Fun

FOR THE RICE NOODLES:

7 ounces dried thin rice vermicelli noodles
1 teaspoon vegetable oil
1/2 teaspoon dark soy sauce

FOR THE CHICKEN:

7 ounces chicken breast (cut into strips)
1 teaspoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon water
1 1/2 teaspoons oyster sauce
2 teaspoons Shaoxing wine
1/4 teaspoon white pepper
1 pinch five spice powder (optional)
1 teaspoon vegetable oil

FOR THE REST OF THE DISH:

2 slices ginger (julienned)
4-5 small shallots (thinly sliced)
1 medium carrot (julienned)
5 oz. cabbage (shredded)
3 scallions (cut into 2-inch pieces)
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 1/2 tablespoons light soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
1/4 teaspoon white pepper
salt to taste
2 tablespoons water (optional)

Soak the dried rice noodles as per the instructions on the back of the package. To test whether or not they’ve been soaked enough, take a noodle and chew on it to make sure it’s no longer hard/dry. Drain thoroughly, shaking off the noodles to get rid of excess water.

In a large bowl, mix the rice noodles with 1 teaspoon of oil and 1/2 teaspoon dark soy sauce until evenly coated. Set aside.

Add the chicken to a medium bowl, along with the cornstarch, water, oyster sauce, Shaoxing wine, white pepper, five spice, and vegetable oil. Marinate for 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, prepare the ginger, shallots, carrot, cabbage, and scallions. Have everything ready to go before you turn on the stove.

Heat your wok over high heat. Add 3 tablespoons oil, followed by the ginger and chicken. Stir-fry until the chicken is just cooked through. Add the shallots, and stir-fry for 10 seconds. Add the cabbage and carrots, and stir-fry for another 30 seconds.

Season everything with 1 1/2 tablespoons light soy sauce, 1/2 teaspoon sesame oil, and 1/4 teaspoon white pepper. Mix well.

Finally, add the prepared rice noodles along with the scallions. Turn the heat down to medium and stir-fry everything together to heat the noodles through and distribute the chicken and vegetables. Salt to taste.

If you like more al dente noodles, you can serve immediately. If you like softer noodles, add 2 tablespoons of water to the wok, cover, and cook for a minute over low heat before serving.

Pad Thai

For the Pad Thai sauce:
1.5 ounces tamarind pulp (plus 1/2 cup boiling water)
3 tablespoons sugar
3 tablespoons fish sauce
2 tablespoons Thai black soy sauce (look for the “Healthy Boy” brand)
1 teaspoon Thai sweet soy sauce (optional)
1/4 teaspoon white pepper (to taste)

For the rest of the dish:
8 ounces dried Pad Thai rice noodles
8 ounces chicken breast (thinly sliced)
1 teaspoon Thai thin soy sauce
1 teaspoon cornstarch
1 teaspoon water
1/3 cup small dried shrimp (minced or processed into a coarse powder)
3 cloves garlic (sliced)
2 large shallots (thinly sliced; can substitute red onion)
2 tablespoons preserved Thai salted radish (preferred) or Chinese mustard stem (rinsed in warm water and julienned; optional — preserved salted radish is a product of Thailand; if you can’t find it, zha cai, works well)
3 large eggs (beaten, preferably at room temperature)
2 cups mung bean sprouts (washed and drained)
1 cup Chinese garlic chives (cut into 1-inch pieces)
2 tablespoons roasted peanuts (finely chopped)
6 tablespoons vegetable oil (divided)

First, make the sauce. Take the tamarind pulp (a block about 1 x 2 in (2.5 x 5 cm) and mix it with ½ cup boiling water (you can add a little more if needed to dissolve the paste). Break up the pulp in the hot water, and then press the mixture through a fine-meshed strainer. Discard the solids. To the liquid tamarind concentrate you just made, add the sugar, fish sauce, Thai black soy sauce, Thai sweet soy sauce (if using), and white pepper. Set aside.

Soak the pad thai noodles in hot water for about 20 minutes, and drain in a colander. If the noodles are in really long strands, you will want to cut them into 10- to 12-inch lengths to make stir-frying easier.

Marinate the sliced chicken by combining it with 1 teaspoon each of Thai thin soy sauce, cornstarch, and water. Set aside.

Next, prepare the dried shrimp, mincing them down into a coarse powder (we used a food processor). Prepare the garlic, shallots/red onion, preserved Chinese mustard stems (zha cai), eggs, mung bean sprouts, garlic chives, and peanuts. You want to have everything ready to go before you turn on the stove.

Now you’re ready to cook! Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in your wok over high heat until just smoking. Add the chicken, and sear until golden and just cooked through. Remove from the wok and set aside.
Add another 3 tablespoons of oil to the wok. Over medium heat, add the shrimp powder. Fry until fragrant and crisp, 2 minutes. Add the garlic, and cook for 30 seconds. Add the shallots and zha cai. Stir-fry for another 30 seconds.

Turn the heat up to high, and add the noodles and sauce. Stir-fry to combine, lifting the noodles with your wok spatula to spread them out and break them up.

Make a space on the side of the wok, pushing the noodles to one side. Drizzle 1 more tablespoon of oil in the open space, and pour in the beaten eggs. Use your spatula to fold them gently, scrambling them without breaking up the egg too much. When the eggs are about 70% done, stir-fry to distribute them into the noodles.

Next, add the bean sprouts and the chives. Stir-fry to combine, letting the chives wilt. Add the chicken back in, and stir-fry to combine until everything is incorporated. Plate, top with the

Sheet Pan Patatas Bravas with Chorizo and Kale

1 (28-ounce) bag small, multicolored potatoes
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 1/2 teaspoons salt, divided
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 (12-ounce) package chorizo links, or 4 sausages of any kind
2 bunches lacinato kale, washed
1/3 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons sriracha, plus more to taste
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar

Preheat oven to 425°F. Cut potatoes into quarters, place in a large bowl; toss in olive oil, 1 teaspoon of the salt, and pepper. Transfer to a rimmed baking sheet. Cut sausages into ½-inch rounds, and place rounds on baking sheet. Transfer to oven and roast for 15-20 minutes until sausages are golden brown. Remove sausage, set aside, and use a spatula to flip potatoes. Return to oven and continue roasting until potatoes are crispy and golden, about 15 more minutes.

While the potatoes roast, prepare the kale: Remove the thick, center rib from kale leaves, and cut the leaves into ¼-inch strips. The easiest way to do this is to stack your de-ribbed kale leaves, then roll the stacked leaves and slice, creating ribbons. Set kale aside.

Prepare your sauce: In a small bowl, mix together mayonnaise and sriracha, and taste. Add more sriracha to your own spice preference and thin with a little water, if necessary, to make it easier to drizzle.

When potatoes are done, remove them from the oven, then transfer potatoes to a bowl. Place the kale on the baking sheet and use a pair of tongs to coat the kale ribbons in the oil leftover on the pan from the sausages and potatoes. Once coated, add remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt and the apple cider vinegar and continue mixing, using hands to squeeze and massage kale, until fully coated. Spread into an even layer, top with potatoes and sausage pieces, then drizzle with the mayonnaise mixture. Serve.

Mexican Pinto Beans

1 lb dry pinto beans (2 1/2 cups dry), soaked 6-12 hours, then drained
1 teaspoon salt
——-
1–2 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, rough chopped
1 cinnamon stick (optional)
1 dry Mexican Guajillo Chile (optional, see notes), seeds removed, cut into small pieces
1 tablespoon cumin
1 tablespoon coriander
2 teaspoons chili powder
2 teaspoons dried oregano
2 bay leaves (optional)
2 quarts water
1 tablespoon tomato paste (optional)
1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon vinegar
1 tablespoon adobo sauce (from canned chipotles)

Place pinto beans in a med bowl, and cover with 2-3 inches of water. Stir in 1 teaspoon salt and let soak overnight – or for a minimum of 6 hours. Drain.

After soaking: In a large pot, heat the oil over medium heat and saute the onion and garlic until tender and fragrant, 4-5 minutes. Add the dried chili, cinnamon stick and all the spices. Saute one minute to toast the spices. Add the water, tomato paste and DRAINED beans. Stir in the 1/2 salt and bring to a rapid boil.

Lower heat to maintain a gentle simmer (on low or medium low) and simmer uncovered for 45-60 minutes, until beans are tender.

Stir in the tablespoon of Chipotle Adobo Sauce and the vinegar.

Taste, adjusting salt if needed.

Notes:
Feel free to substite 1-2 canned chipotle peppers (chopped) instead of the dried Mexican chili. Or leave out both for a milder version. Or experiment with other dried Mexican chilies taking not of heat level. One Guajillo chili makes this MEDIUM SPICY.

Using the The Adobo sauce from the Canned Chipotle Peppers really elevates and adds a lovely smokiness to the whole dish. Freeze the leftover chipotle chilies (individually) for later use!
You could also use a little smoked paprika for the smoky flavor without the spiciness.

INSTANT POT: Cook according to above, using the saute function for sauteeing. Reduce water to 4 cups. Pressure cook the soaked pinto beans on high for 25 minutes, naturally release. If you’d like to reduce liquid further, cook on saute function for a few minutes until it thickens up.

HAM HOCK: Feel free to add a smoked ham hock to the top of the simmering beans. After it’s tender, shred the meat and stir into the beans.

Potato, Corn, and Scallion Tikki

For the tikkis:
3 russet potatoes (about 600 grams / 1 pound, 5 ounces), peeled and diced
200 grams (7 ounces) cooked corn, either stripped from 2 to 3 steamed fresh ears or drained from one can
6 scallions, chopped finely
1 green chile (such as jalapeño or serrano), finely minced
2 tablespoons corn starch
1 teaspoon chaat masala
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 splash neutral oil, like sunflower, vegetable, or canola

For the chutney:
100 grams (3 1/2 ounces) fresh cilantro, leaves and stems
100 grams (3 1/2 oz) fresh mint, leaves only
2 green chiles (such as jalapeño or serrano), stemmed and halved
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice (from about 1 lime)
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon granulated sugar
3 tablespoons water, plus more as needed

For the tikkis:
Boil the potatoes in a pan of salted water until soft. Drain well, then mash thoroughly in a bowl. Leave ?to cool.

Add all the remaining ingredients, except the oil, to ?the cooled mash and use your hands to mix well.

Take lime-sized portions of the mixture and shape them into flat oval patties. Repeat until all the mixture has been used.

Heat a tablespoon of oil in a frying pan or flat griddle over a medium heat. Once hot, add the tikkis (working ?in batches as necessary) and fry for a couple of minutes on each side until golden. Serve warm ?or at room temperature.

These will keep in the fridge for 3–4 days. Reheat in ?a pan or hot oven before serving.

For the chutney:
Put all the ingredients into a blender, grind to a smooth paste, and serve.

This will keep in the fridge in a sealed jar for 3–4 days.

Gobi Musallam – Whole Roasted Cauliflower with Creamy Makhani Sauce

1 Cauliflower head leaves and tough stem removed and washed
Water to blanch
2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon (0.5 teaspoon) turmeric
1/2 teaspoon (0.5 teaspoon) chili powder optional

Sauce/gravy:
2 teaspoons oil
1/2 (0.5 ) medium red onion chopped
1 inch ginger chopped
5-6 cloves (5 cloves) of garlic chopped
1 dry red chili or chili flakes to taste
3 medium tomatoes chopped
1 teaspoon garam masala
1/2 teaspoon (0.5 teaspoon) cumin powder
1/2 teaspoon (0.5 teaspoon) coriander powder
1/2 teaspoon (0.5 teaspoon) turmeric powder
1 Tablespoon dried Fenugreek Leaves kasuri methi
3/4 cup (169.5 ml) coconut milk from can
1/4 cup (59.15 g) ground cashew or 1/3 cup soaked cashews
3/4 teaspoon (0.75 teaspoon) salt
1/4 teaspoon (0.25 teaspoon) raw sugar or 1/2 teaspoon maple syrup

Bring a large pot of water to boil. Use enough water so all of the cauliflower can be immersed in it.
Add salt, turmeric and chili and blanch/cook the whole cauliflower.

Cover and cook for 4 minutes on each side(top and bottom. Flip after 4 minutes)

Sauce:
In a pan, add oil and heat over medium heat. Add chopped onion and saute until golden, 6-7 minutes
Add ginger, garlic chili and saute for another 2 minutes.Add the spices and mix.

Add tomatoes, salt, sugar, fenugreek leaves, mix and cook covered until tender. Mash the larger pieces. 8-10 minutes.

Cool slightly, then blend with coconut milk and cashews into a smooth thick puree.Taste and adjust salt, spice.

Bake:
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F / 200ºc. Oil the baking dish if desired. Place the blanched cauliflower in a baking dish. Slowly drop the puree on top to cover the entire head of the cauliflower. Some sauce will fall on the side.

Keep about a 1/3 of the sauce to serve on the side later.

Bake in pre-heated 400 degrees F / 200ºc for 40-45 minutes till the cauliflower is dry to touch and sauce thickens a bit. Turn the dish around after 30 minutes.

Heat the remaining sauce to just about a boil so it thickens and serve on the side.Serve hot with flat breads(Naan/Roti), or salads or quinoa.Chop and fill up wraps or a hoagie roll(to make gobi meatball sub).

Whole Roasted Cauliflower with Chimichurri

1 whole cauliflower, leaves trimmed off
1/2 cup olive oil, divided
1/2 cup fresh parsley
1/4 cup fresh cilantro
3 tablespoons fresh oregano
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
2 garlic cloves
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon paprika
How to Make Oven Baked Cauliflower

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F (190 C).

Rinse the cauliflower, then use 1/4 cup of olive oil, to coat the whole head, top to bottom, of cauliflower.

Place in a cast iron skillet or baking dish. Cover with aluminum foil and cook for 30 minutes.

Remove aluminum foil and cook for an additional 60 minutes. The cauliflower will be golden brown when fully cooked.

Meanwhile, in a small food processor, combine the remaining olive oil, herbs, garlic, and spices. Blitz till combined, but still slightly chunky.

Remove cauliflower from oven and let rest for 10 minutes before topping with chimichurri sauce and serving.

Whole Roasted Cauliflower with Shawarma and Harissa

1 large head cauliflower
2 Tbsp avocado oil or melted coconut oil
2 Tbsp water
2 Tbsp shawarma spice blend (or curry powder, plus more for exterior)
1-2 tsp harissa paste (optional)
2 tsp maple syrup
1/2 tsp sea salt (plus more for exterior)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (204 C). Also fill a small baking pan halfway with water and set on the floor (bottom) of the oven. This will provide steam to help the cauliflower cook more evenly.

Rinse and dry the head of cauliflower and carefully cut off the bottom stalk without removing too much of the core. You want the entire head intact for baking. Peel away any remaining green leaves and place in a cast-iron skillet (or other oven-safe pan).

In a mixing bowl, mix together avocado oil or melted coconut oil, water, shawarma spice blend, harissa paste (optional), maple syrup, and salt. Taste and adjust flavor as needed, adding more shawarma for smoky flavor, harissa paste (optional) for spiciness, maple syrup for sweetness, or salt for more intense overall flavor.

Flip your cauliflower upside down and pour on most of the sauce. Let the sauce pour down the core, shake it around so it infuses the center, and then flip the cauliflower over and use a brush to rub the leftover sauce (including any that seeped into the pan) all over the exterior for maximum flavor. Place cauliflower core-side down before baking and add an extra pinch of salt and spice blend to the exterior for extra flavor.

Place skillet in oven and roast for 35-50 minutes (depending on size of cauliflower) or until a knife easily pierces the core. If you prefer softer cauliflower, then roast for longer. For cauliflower with a little bite, roast for less time.

To brown the exterior, increase heat to high broil and roast 2-4 more minutes, watching carefully as not to burn.

Remove from oven and enjoy as is or garnish with desired sauces and sides.

Leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator up to 4 days. Reheat in a 350-degree F (176 C) oven until hot.

Whole Roasted Cauliflower with Garlic and Parmesan

1 head Cauliflower
1/3 cup Olive oil
3 cloves Garlic (crushed)
1/4 cup Grated Parmesan cheese (divided)
1 tsp Dried basil
1 tsp Dried parsley
1 tsp Dried thyme
1/2 tsp Sea salt (or more to taste)
1/4 tsp Black pepper

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F (204 degrees C).

Rinse the cauliflower head and pat dry. Remove the outer leaves. Carefully cut off the bottom so that it’s flat and most of the woody stem is removed, being careful not to cut off so much that it falls apart. Be sure the head stays intact.

In a small bowl, make the garlic Parmesan sauce. Stir together the olive oil, minced garlic, 2 tablespoons (28.3 grams) grated Parmesan (half of the total amount), basil, parsley, thyme, sea salt, and black pepper.

Place the trimmed cauliflower head upside down (core side up) onto a 6-quart (5.6 liters) dutch oven. Drizzle 1/2 of the sauce over the cauliflower, tilting it to let it drip down the core and all around. Flip over and drizzle the remaining sauce over the top. Use a pastry brush to brush on any that had dripped down to the pan or didn’t spread well.

Cover the dutch oven with a lid and bake for 35-45 minutes, until the cauliflower is tender and pierces easily with a skewer, knife or fork.

Remove the lid. Sprinkle the top of the cauliflower with the remaining 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese. Place the cauliflower under the broiler and broil for about 5 minutes, until the cheese is browned.

Gobhi Musallam (Whole Roasted Cauliflower with Tomatoes)

2 tablespoon(s) ghee or vegetable oil
2 large tomatoes, cut in four pieces
2 medium bay leaves
1 1/2 teaspoon(s) garam masala
1 1/2 teaspoon(s) turmeric
teaspoon(s) cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon(s) dried coconut
1 large cauliflower (about 900 gram)
2/3 cup(s) water
1/2 cup(s) chopped cilantro, to garnish
1 Whole lemon, sliced in several pieces
1 teaspoon(s) salt, or as desired

Heat the ghee or vegetable oil in a deep saucepan and sauté tomatoes until their juices run.

Add bay leaves, garam masala, turmeric, cayenne pepper, salt and coconut and stir thoroughly for another 2-3 minutes.

Remove leaves and stem from cauliflower, turn it floret-side down, and place over cooking mixture.
Pour water, cover pan, and simmer about 30 minutes. From time to time, remove cover and baste cauliflower with cooking mixture.

When cauliflower is tender, remove from heat and transfer the whole cauliflower together with the remaining liquid onto a serving dish.

Garnish with coriander and lemon and serve hot.

Spiced Ginger Shrimp with Burst Tomatoes

About 1 1/2 teaspoons aromatic spice blend, such as garam masala, Baharat, five-spice, curry powder, or a mild chili powder blend (see Note), plus more to taste
1 1/2 teaspoons finely grated fresh ginger
2 garlic cloves, minced or finely grated
3 scallions, thinly sliced, greens and whites separated
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 pound extra-large shrimp, shelled and deveined
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
3/4 cup small (or halved large) cherry tomatoes, preferably yellow Sungold tomatoes
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
Fresh lime juice
1/2 cup fresh mint leaves, torn or roughly chopped

In a medium bowl, combine spice blend, ginger, garlic, scallion whites, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Add shrimp and toss well. Heat a large skillet over high heat, then add the oil. Add the tomatoes and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Cook until the whole tomatoes burst and the halved ones start to wrinkle, about 2 minutes.

Add shrimp mixture and sauté for another 2 to 4 minutes, turning the shrimp, until they are pink all over.
Gently stir in butter and cook for another minute, until the shrimp are cooked through. Remove from heat and add a squeeze of fresh lime juice. Taste and add more salt and spices, if needed. Garnish with mint and scallion greens and serve immediately.

Note: You can use any aromatic spice mix you have on hand here, or use 1/2 teaspoon each of ground cumin and coriander plus 1/4 teaspoon each of cayenne and cinnamon.

Vadouvan Shrimp

4 tablespoons butter, unsalted
3-4 tablespoons vadouvan
2/3 cup orange or mango juice
1 1/2 pounds large shrimp, peeled and deveined

1Melt the butter in a saute pan until golden.

Add the vadouvan and saute until fragrant, about 1 minute.

Add the juice, and increase the heat to a boil. Reduce the liquid by about half, until syrupy, about 3-4 minutes.

Add the shrimp, and saute until cooked, about 5 minutes. Serve over rice.

Fried Green Tomatoes

3 fresh green tomatoes cut into 1/4 inch slices
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
2 large eggs beaten with 1 tablespoon water
1/2 cup yellow cornmeal
1/2 cup panko crumbs
1/8-1/4 teaspoon paprika optional- go up to 1/4 teaspoon if you like spicy foods
oil for frying

Liberally season green tomato slices with salt and pepper on both sides.
Add flour and eggs to two separate small bowls.

Combine cornmeal, panko crumbs and paprika into another small bowl and whisk together.
Begin by dipping each seasoned tomato slice into flour coating on both sides.
Next add floured tomato slice to eggs coating on both sides.

Lastly dip into cornmeal and crumb mixture and set aside finished slice on baking sheet.
Repeat dredging process, starting with flour, until all slices are coated.

Heat oil in a frying pan over medium high heat.

Fry tomato slices on both sides until golden brown and drain on paper towels.

Serve warm.

Tamarind-Glazed Shrimp

1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/2 teaspoon coriander seeds, crushed
2 tablespoons store-bought tamarind-date chutney
1 1/2 tablespoons honey
1/2-inch peeled ginger root, grated
1 pound uncooked medium (41 to 50 count) shrimp, peeled and deveined
2 tablespoons vegetable oil

Combine the lemon juice, salt, crushed red pepper flakes (if using), coriander seeds, chutney, honey and ginger in a resealable plastic food storage bag.

Add the shrimp and seal the bag, pressing out as much air as possible. Massage to coat the shrimp evenly. Refrigerate for 10 minutes or up to 1 hour.

About 10 minutes before you are ready to serve, heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat until the oil shimmers.

Add the shrimp and all of the marinade, being mindful of the splatters.

Cook, stirring, for about 2 minutes, or until the shrimp are no longer translucent.

Transfer to a bowl and pour any pan juices over the shrimp. If serving as hors d’oeuvres, place 2 or 3 shrimp on long skewers.

Cold Tahini Noodles

Kosher salt
1 pound dried udon noodles (may substitute Chinese egg noodles or whole-wheat linguine)
2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon sesame oil
2 tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar
2 tablespoons tahini
1 tablespoon smooth peanut butter
3 1/2 teaspoons low-sodium soy sauce
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon peeled fresh ginger root, finely grated
2 to 3 teaspoons chili garlic sauce
1 large carrot, scrubbed well and cut into 2-inch long matchsticks
1/2 English cucumber, seeded and cut into 2-inch long matchsticks
1 medium red bell pepper, seeded and cut into thin 2-inch-long strips
2 scallions, thinly sliced
1/4 cup chopped roasted unsalted peanuts (or 1 teaspoon toasted sesame seeds)

Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the noodles and cook for 8 minutes, or until just tender. Drain the noodles, rinse with cold water, drain again and transfer to a large bowl. Add 1 teaspoon of the sesame oil and toss to coat.

In a medium bowl, whisk the remaining 2 tablespoons sesame oil, the rice vinegar, tahini, peanut butter, soy sauce, sugar, ginger and chili-garlic sauce.

Pour the sauce over the noodles and toss to coat. Add the carrot, cucumber and bell pepper and toss to mix it together.

Sprinkle the scallions and peanuts (or toasted sesame seeds) on top before serving.

Cantonese Supreme Soy Sauce Pan-Fried Noodles

300 grams fresh thin egg noodles (Twin Marquis Hong Kong Fried Noodles)
4 Tbsp cooking oil – divided, plus more as needed
1 large onion – peeled and thinly sliced
3 cups beansprouts

Seasonings:
2 Tbsp soy sauce – or more to taste
1 Tbsp oyster sauce
1 Tbsp dark soy sauce
1 Tbsp sesame oil
1 tsp sugar
1/4 tsp ground white pepper

Mix all the ingredients for the seasonings and set aside.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Blanch the fresh egg noodles in the boiling water for 1 minute or less. Don’t overcook the noodles. If you use dried noodles, cook them according to instruction. I suggest to cook it to al dente and then refresh with cold water.

Preheat a wok or large skillet until really hot. Add 3 Tbsp of oil. Add the blanched noodles to the wok. Spread it on the wok as thinly as possible and let them fry until certain spots get slightly charred and crispy. Flip over and let it crisp up on certain spots. Drizzle with a bit of oil on the side if necessary. Dish out the noodles.

Preheat the wok again. Add 1 Tbsp of oil and add onion slices. Stir fry until they are slightly softened but still has a bit of crunch.

Add the noodles followed by the seasonings. Toss to mix everything and to make sure the seasonings coat the noodles. Add beansprouts and stir fry for about 30 seconds or so or until it just a bit soft but still have that crunch. Have a taste and adjust by adding more soy sauce if needed. Turn off the heat and serve immediately.

Variations:

Supreme soy sauce noodles is a very basic Cantonese chow-mein and usually with no protein or leafy vegetables added. However, if you want to make it into a “complete” meal with some protein and veggies, you certainly can.

PROTEIN: chicken, beef slices, pork slices, tofu, shrimp, etc. Stir fry this with a bit of oil after you pan-fry the noodles and then dish out and add them back in together with the noodles and seasonings later.

VEGETABLES: Bok choy, yu choy, Chinese broccoli (gai lan), mushrooms, etc. After stir frying the onion, add the veggies and continue to stir fry until the veggies are soft and continue with the rest of the recipe.

Sheet Pan Salt and Pepper Chicken

1 pound (450 grams) boneless skinless chicken thighs (or breasts) , cut to 1-inch (2-cm) pieces
1 egg , beaten
1/2 cup cornstarch
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 small batch basil (or nori sheets) (*Footnote 1)

Marinade
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
3 cloves garlic , finely grated
2 teaspoons ginger , finely grated
2 teaspoons brown sugar (or regular sugar)
1/2 teaspoon salt

Spice Mix
2 teaspoons white pepper powder
1 teaspoon brown sugar (or regular sugar)
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon five-spice powder

Combine the chicken and the marinade ingredients in a big bowl. Mix well. Marinate for at least 30 minutes at room temperature, or up to overnight in the fridge.

Combine the ingredients for the spice mix in a small bowl and stir to mix well. Note, this recipe prepares more spice mix than you might use, so you can adjust the seasoning according to your preference.

When you’re ready to cook, add the beaten egg into the bowl with the chicken. Stir to mix well. Add the cornstarch. Stir to coat the chicken, until it forms an uneven coating with a little dry cornstarch left unattached. The batter should be quite dry and not very runny.

Add the oil to a large skillet (nonstick or carbon steel), just enough to coat the bottom of the pan. Heat over medium-high heat until hot. Add the chicken one piece at a time using a pair of chopsticks or tongs. Turn to medium heat if the pan starts to smoke too much.

Cook the chicken until the bottom turns golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes. Flip to brown the other side, 2 to 3 minutes. (Alternatively, you can deep-fry the chicken with more oil at 350 F (176 C) until golden brown.) Transfer chicken to a large plate and remove the pan from the stove to let it cool a bit.

Your pan should still have a thin layer of oil remaining in it. If not, add 1 to 2 tablespoons of oil. Heat over medium heat. Spread the basil leaves. Cook the bottom side for 30 seconds. Flip to cook the other side until crispy. Transfer the basil leaves to a large plate to cool.
While the chicken is still hot, sprinkle about half of the spice mix over the chicken and gently toss it with a pair of tongs. Taste the chicken. Add more spice mix if needed. Add the cooked basil leaves and toss again.

Serve as an appetizer.

You can store the leftover chicken in a sealed container in the fridge. To reheat the chicken, preheat your oven to 350 degrees F (176 C). Heat the chicken for 10 to 15 minutes, or until heated through.

Notes
The crispy basil leaves add another flavor dimension to the dish, but it does require some extra effort to cook them. I’ve found that dried nori sheets have a similar texture and equally interesting taste. You can simply shred some nori and add it to the chicken to skip frying the basil.

Salt and Pepper Pork Chops

1 lb (450 g) boneless pork chops , cut into irregular 1/2” to 1” (1 to 2.5 cm) pieces (See the blog post above for how to cut the chops)

Marinade
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 tablespoon Shaoxing wine (or dry sherry for gluten-free)
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon salt

Pepper salt
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon white pepper

Cooking
1/4 cup cornstarch
1/2 cup vegetable oil (or enough to cover half of the pork)
3 cloves garlic , sliced
1 jalapeno , thinly sliced

Combine the cut pork with the oil, shaoxing wine, 1 tablespoon cornstarch, and salt. Mix until the pork is evenly coated. Marinate for 15 minutes.

Mix the salt and pepper in a small bowl.

Add enough oil to a medium-sized pan to cover half of the pork. Heat over medium heat until hot. Prepare a plate lined with paper towels.

Add the garlic and peppers to the oil and fry them until the garlic just turns pale golden and the jalapenos crisp up on the edges, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove them from the pan with a slotted spoon, draining the excess oil as you do, and place them onto the paper towel lined plate. Once the peppers and garlic have cooled, transfer them to a big bowl.

Add the 1/4 cup cornstarch to the marinated pork chops and toss to coat. Add the pork to the pan, a few pieces at a time, so they do not crowd the pan. Cook on each side for 2 to 3 minutes, until the coating is crispy and lightly browned.

Remove the pork from the pan, draining the excess oil as you do, and place them on the paper towel lined plate. Let rest for at least 10 to 20 seconds, so the paper soaks up some of the oil. Once you’ve cooked all the pork chops, transfer them to the bowl with the pepper and garlic.

Sprinkle half of the salt and pepper over everything and toss to evenly distribute. Taste the pork and sprinkle with more salt and pepper, if needed.

Thai Roasted Cauliflower

About 1/3 – 1/2 large head cauliflower (see note)
1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
2 T olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
juice and zest of 1 lime
1 tsp fish sauce (vegan alteration: wheat-free tamari)
2 tsp sugar
1 jalapeño, finely chopped (seeded for milder tastes)
1/4 cup dry-roasted, unsalted peanuts crushed or finely chopped
extra cilantro, lime and jalapeño, for serving

Preheat oven to 425F. Carefully trim the outer leaves off your cauliflower leaving the stem intact. Slice the cauliflower into about 3/4″ slabs all the way through the stem. Reserve any loose florets (probably half a head, or so) for another use — or just roast them alongside the steaks. They won’t look as cool, but whatever.

Liberally drizzle cauli with olive oil and roast on a baking sheet in a single layer for 30 minutes, until deep golden brown with crisp spots in places. Let cool slightly.

Meanwhile, stir together cilantro, 2 T olive oil, lime juice, fish sauce or tamari, sugar and jalapeño in a small bowl.

Top cauli steaks with cilantro mixture, crushed peanuts and lime zest and extra cilantro, lime juice and jalapeños to taste. Enjoy!