Archive for cooking

Coconut Shrimp (China Inn Style)

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on April 29, 2013 by groovychef

I was asked a while back to locate a recipe for a shrimp that was offered at our local Chinese Buffet. I myself happen to love this dish so now that I have a spare moment, I am all to happy to oblige.

1 can cream of coconut divided
1 lb peeled and deveined shrimp
1/4 tsp ground cayenne
1/2 tsp salt
2 cups all purpose flour
3 Tbsps heavy cream
2 Tbsps sherry
1 Tbsp flour
2 Tbsps water

Reserve 1/4 cup cream of coconut, in remaining cream of coconut add cayenne and salt, dip shrimp in coconut mixture then flour, repeat with all shrimp. Fry shrimp in hot oil until golden, drain. Heat 1/4 cup cream of coconut, heavy cream and sherry to boiling. Mix water and flour together, add to boiling mixture to thicken, serve with fried shrimp.

Here is a second one that is NOT a tempura based breading but sounded good just the same. Let me know if you try it….

Coconut Shrimp
canola oil for fryer
24 large shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 ½ cups all-purpose flour, divided
2 tablespoons sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup milk
2 tablespoons Captain Morgan Parrot Bay Coconut Rum
1 cup bread crumbs
½ cup shredded sweetened coconut

Preparation:
Heat oil to 350 degrees F.
Measure 3/4 cup flour into a medium bowl.
In a second, medium bowl combine, 3/4 cup flour, sugar and salt.
Stir rum and milk into flour mixture in the second bowl, let it stand for 5 minutes.
Combine breadcrumbs and shredded coconut into a third bowl.
Butterfly cut each shrimp before you start the battering. Use a sharp knife to slice through the top of the shrimp (where the vein was) so that you can spread the shrimp open.
Leave the tail intact.
To batter the shrimp, dip each one in the flour, then in the wet batter, then coat each shrimp with the bread crumb/coconut mixture.
Place shrimp on a plate to reserve for frying. Fry the shrimp by dropping six at a time into the hot oil for 2 to 3 minutes or until the shrimp are golden brown.

Serve with pina colada dipping sauce.

Pina Colada Dipping Sauce
½ cup sour cream
1/4 cup pina colada nonalcoholic drink mix
1/4 cup crushed pineapple
sugar to taste

Preparation:
Mix all ingredients together. Chill.

Communion: Bread and Wine

Posted in Everyday Cooking with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 17, 2013 by groovychef

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Normally my days off are spent doing some serious cooking. But I woke up this morning riddled with allergies and a general exhaustion (most likely from the allergies I suffer from the Kentucky Bluegrass across the street).

So after a morning of nearly zero productivity, I finally decided to make bread.

Making bread, like making pasta, is good for the soul. It clears the brain, it clears the bad karma, it cleanses the soul.

It requires you to care for the yeast and bread [sponge] like a fertilized egg. With the right care and conditions it grows into a beautiful piece of artwork.

As the rain came down in furious sheets outside (and plenty of lightening and thunder that scared my poor furry baby), I warmed the water to the right temp and added the yeast and sugar…then I carried it out to the coffee table to watch it bloom…I did not want to miss the moment when it was perfect for adding flour.

As the afternoon droned on and the rain continued, I turned on the tv only to be hit with our President announcing that the current gun background check bill had been denied. I also realized that I could not get enough to eat (over a two hour period of time I ate two Italian sausages, a cup of crab salad, and half a carton of ice cream).

I went back to making bread….

As I did I could not help but to feel that making bread, on this dark and rainy afternoon was more of a deep cleaning then just therapy for the brain, a clearing of the karma and cleansing of the soul.

I felt more relaxed and less worried about life’s small problems then I had earlier.

After several hours (I do on occasion have yeast issues…today being one of them, I suspect the moisture in the air had something to do with it), the bread was ready to be placed in the oven and bake.

The second the bread hit the oven, I felt a sigh of relief come out and the tension in my shoulders melt away. At this point, I had tended the bread as best as I could and if it was not going to bake right, there was nothing more I could do to save it.

Later, as I sliced the warm bread and poured myself a glass of chardonnay, I realized that maybe the rain, the bread and the wine were my own private “communion.” A way to cleanse my tired soul….

 

Chili-Coco Rubbed New York Strip

Posted in Recipes with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on April 16, 2013 by groovychef

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This rub is quick and simple and perfect for last minute grilling ease. The sweetness if offset by the heat from the cayenne and chile powder while it leaves just a hint of coco flavor that adds a deep richness to the steak without making it overwhelming. Its like a Mole sauce in dry rub form.

1 Tbsp. brown sugar

2 Tsp. Kosher salt

2 Tsp. McCormicks Cocoa-Chile spice blend

1 Tsp. onion powder

1 Tsp. garlic powder

1/2 Tsp. smoked paprika

1 Tsp. Cayenne pepper

1/4 Tsp. ground cumin

1/4 Tsp. black pepper

1/4 Tsp. ground cinnamon

4 Strip Steaks (or other cut of beef of your choice)

1. Blend all spices in a small bowl.

2. Pat steaks dry and generously rub both sides of each steak with rub. Allow steaks to sit for half an hour to reach room temperature (helps to aid in even cooking)

3. Grill steaks to desired temperature.

Serves 4

 

Strawberries with Swedish Lingonberry Cream

Posted in Recipes with tags , , , , , , on April 13, 2013 by groovychef

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Large package of strawberries, washed and cut into piece

1 1/2 cups. heavy whipping cream

3/4 cup sour cream

2 Tbsp. sugar

3 Tbsp. Lingonberries (jellied)

1. Using a cold bowl, whip heavy whipping cream until it reaches medium peaks and can hold its shape.

2. Add sour cream and stir gently to incorporate.

3. Add sugar and lingonberry’s and stir again.

4. Place strawberries in a dessert cup and top with a portion of the Swedish cream.

Serves 8

Three Cheese Macaroni

Posted in Recipes with tags , , , , , , , , , on April 13, 2013 by groovychef

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1 lb. large macaroni noodles

2 Tbsp. butter

1 cup chopped onion

2 Tbsp. flour

3 cups milk

16 oz. shredded Swiss cheese

8 oz. Brie with the bloomy rind shaved off, and cut into pieces

8 oz. cream cheese cut into pieces

3/4 Tbsp. red pepper flakes (more for added heat)

1 1/2 cups panko bread crumbs

1 pkg. Aidelle’s pineapple and bacon sausage

salt and pepper to taste

1. Preheat oven to 350. Bring a stock pot of salted water to boil. Cook noodles until slightly under the al dente mark. Drain and return to stockpot.

2. While noodles are cooking, melt butter in a large sauce pan. Add chopped onions and cook until translucent. Add flour until a very thick roux is created.

3. Add milk, turn up the heat to high and bring the milk to a low boil, stirring to incorporate the roux and thicken the milk slightly. Turn heat down to medium.

4. Add Swiss and stir. Add Brie and stir again. Then add the cream cheese and stir until the chunks of cream cheese have dissolved slightly. Add red pepper flakes. Turn off burner and allow to rest for a couple of minutes while the sausage is cooking.

5. Microwave the sausage for 2 minutes, just enough to warm them. Remove from microwave and cut them into small pieces.

Assemble: Pour cheese mixture into stockpot with noodles. It will look rather lumps and coagulated when it goes in but will smooth out when you stir the mixture. Add sausage and stir again. Pour into a large casserole dish and cover with foil. Bake in the oven for 30 minutes.

Remove from oven and top with panko bread crumbs. Return macaroni to oven , uncovered, and bake for another 20 minutes.

Serves 8

Steak Au Poivre Sandwiches

Posted in Recipes with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 9, 2013 by groovychef

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Steak Au Poivre Sandwiches

2 lbs. Boneless beef ribs, ribeyes, or New York strip (the choice is yours)

1 Tbsp. sea salt

1Tbsp. minced garlic

1 Tbsp. butter

1/4 c. brandy

1 1/2 c. beef stock

2 Tsp. green peppercorns

1/4 c. button mushrooms wiped and sliced

1 loaf garlic bread

8 slices Swiss cheese (may use a  cheddar for a heavier robust flavor or bleu cheese for a bit more tang)

1. Mix garlic and sea salt in a small bowl and generously rub the mat with the mixture. Set aside.

2. Drop butter into a grill pan and heat on high until the butter has melted but the milk solids have not browned. Place beef in grill pan and cook on both sides until meat is firm. Ideally, medium to medium rare is perfect for this recipe as it will be finished off in the oven. When beef is done, set aside to rest. Preheat oven to 400.

3. While the meat is resting, place brandy in a medium hot saute pan (stainless steel) and ignite (flambe). Be cautious when doing this. After flame has died, add beef stock and peppercorns and continue to simmer until stock has reduced to about 1 1/2 cups. Add mushrooms and turn off heat.

4. Remove garlic bread from its wrapper and lay butter side up on cookie sheet. Thinly slice rested beef (against the grain) layer pieces on top of the bread. Pop into over for about 8 minutes, long enough to melt the butter and cook the beef until slightly pink. Remove from oven and top with cheese.

5. Place back in oven for 5 minutes more, until cheese has melted.

6. Strain Au Poivre sauce and serve with sandwich.

Cooking Notes: The garlic and sea salt rub is a technique used in Brazil for all their meats. Its a simple clean flavor allowing the flavor of the beef to shine through without all the complication of herbs and spices. Traditionally, Au Poivre is not made with cheese but I felt that this would b a great cross between a French Dip and Steak Au Poivre. Its a simple dish that can be made after a long day of work without much fuss.

Last Nights Beef Brisket, A Nap on The Couch, and Ravioli For Breakfast: It’s Not Glam, Its Reality

Posted in Everyday Cooking with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 5, 2013 by groovychef

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I did not get to post last night as promised. Somehow the days events completely wore me out and I managed enough energy to get my chili rubbed brisket into the oven, finish up a few loose ends around the house and then lay down on the couch to watch a movie…which I did not see the end of because I fell asleep.

I missed the end of Looper. It was a great movie, what I saw of it. As for the beef brisket, it turned out perfect.

I opted for a chili-cinnamon based rub and no bbq sauce. As a chef, I adore the heat sweet blend of a hot rub and a sweet sauce (it confuses your taste buds) but this 3 lb piece of brisket was insanely perfect in its cut, size, color and appearance (you would think I was grading a diamond!) and I just did not want to muck up the flavor of the beef.

I did not remove the small fat pad on the back side of the brisket. Contrary to popular belief, fat is good for a lot of things and flavoring a “dry” cut of beef with its own natural fat is better then slathering it with Crisco or bacon (mmmm…bacon. This is the only time I am choosing not to add bacon to anything). I placed it in an oven proof pan at 400, fat side down and roasted it, DRY in the oven for about half an hour until the fat had released some of its juices and it started to build a brown crust color. Then I flipped the beef over and returned it to the oven for another half an hour.

I removed it one last time, flipped it over (fat side down) reduced the oven temp to 250 and slid it right back in for another hour to finish off. When the meat was a pleasant deep mahogany, and firm to the touch I removed it (I did not temp it…temp is relative, I believe, to the cut of the meat and the cooking process…its a dry cut of beef, it needs to be given a little breathing room as far as internal temp goes. So cook it to a medium/medium-rare and it will be perfect, moist and juicy every time) and allowed it to rest. When I finally cut into it, the meat was a perfect pink…not fleshy but not a sallow pink either.

I did not get to testing out my Krab appetizer. The couch was calling to me and I could no longer ignore it.

Of course, after a full nights sleep I am back up and ready to rock and roll. However, being Friday, I will not be doing much home cooking this weekend as I am a slave to the reality of a commercial kitchen and will be spending ample time getting my “Gordon Ramsey” on. So in preparation, I am eating a lovely bowl of ravioli topped in old hen sauce (thank you Micheal Chiarello for the outstanding recipe…), dotted with giant chunks of sausage, and slathered in mozzarella cheese. And a diet coke.

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