Saturday, August 7, 2010

Just because I had to use the Asian Eggplant I've Been Growing....

I put together this Asian Fusion Garlic Eggplant, Chicken, Red Pepper and Onion Stir Fry this evening and it was so delicious that I wanted to share it with you.  I can't give you specific amounts for everything because I invented as I went along.  If you've ever done stir frying or a bit of Asian cooking, you will be able to fill in the blanks.  Read the recipe first since several things are going on at the same time and you can be confused about what to do when!

Here are the ingredients for four smallish servings:
1/2 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breast cut into largish bite-sized pieces
1 lb. long thin Asian Eggplant cut in bite size pieces, skin on.
1/2 large Vidalia onion cut into bite size pieces
two red peppers or one very large one (as I had) cut in bite sized pieces
lots of fresh garlic, put through garlic press
Oil for frying (very little - you periodically add chicken broth to keep the bottom of the pan from scorching)

Bulgogi Marinade from Debra Samuels' The Korean Table (minus scallions)
Swanson's canned chicken broth
few shakes of  Oyster Sauce
few shakes of Thai Sweet Chili Sauce
1 tbsp. Cornstarch thinned with a couple of tablespoons of cold water

Place chicken in container you can securely cover and turn over to make sure marinade coats well.  Pour bulgogi marinade (maybe 1/3 cup) over the chicken and grate fresh ginger on it.  Stir to combine with the chicken and  cover container.  It doesn't have to marinate very long - maybe 5-10 minutes.  Turn over and shake periodically while eggplant and pepper are in the microwave.

Put a generous tablespoon of oil in a wok of heavy skillet over high heat and fry chicken till it's no longer pink and begins to feel slightly firm.  Don't overcook it!  Remove and set aside when done. * You can be nuking the eggplant and pepper while you fry the chicken and then the onion.

*The eggplant and pepper pieces are placed on a large platter in the microwave and nuked on high for about 7 minutes until they soften.  Precooking them means you can use way less oil to stir fry them.

While eggplant and pepper are nuking, put a couple of tablespoons of oil in the same messy wok or skillet that you just took the chicken out of.   Add onion pieces and stir fry for a couple of minutes and turn off heat.  Add the nuked eggplantm pepper pieces  when they're ready. Also add some garlic.  Eggplant will quickly soak up oil.  This is when you have to add chicken broth to keep things moving and to keep the bottom of the pan from scorching. (You don't want the veggies to swim in broth - you just don't want them to scorch.)  Leftover broth can be stored in fridge for several days for later use.

When veggies are stir-fried (over high heat) to your liking (not too much) add the pre-cooked chicken pieces and stir to combine.  Add dashes of oyster sauce and Thai sweet chili sauce, plus a bit more chicken broth, heat stir well and add cornstarch dissolved in water to thicken as you stir.

Serve over rice.

Monday, May 31, 2010

A Little Family Fun over Memorial Day Weekend

During a visit to the outlet shops in Atlantic City, New Jersey
They loved all the "whee-ing" they got.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Non-Laminated Breakfast Potatoes

I'm not much of a breakfast food eater but I do love well-done hash browns with onions in them. Through the years I've tried various methods to make them look and taste as good as some we've had in restaurants, but every attempt has been a failure until this morning, when a web search took me to Monica's blog:

I adapted her method for my own requirements (had to have onions in them), using extra virgin olive oil, russet potatoes, and Vidalia onion, seasoned at the end with salt, garlic powder and dried dill weed. Almost forget to say that after frying I drained the potatoes on a paper towel and patted the tops as well.  Here is my result:
Oh...and as far as the "non-laminated" goes, these were the first ever breakfast potatoes I made that didn't have to be sand-blasted off the bottom of the skillet.  Secrets were, I think, lots of oil to coat the bottom of the pan, despite it being so-called non-stick, and cutting the potato into very small cubes and then drying them off with paper towels before frying.  They have to be left in place a few minutes before you start tossing them to get all sides crisp, each time you toss letting that arrangement cook (on medium high heat) for a couple of minutes.

Monday, February 15, 2010

The Diet isn't Working!

I've had Beegie on Purina Overweight Maintenance food since June.

All kidding aside, she's lost three pounds and I'm very proud of her! (Now if I could only remember to take Louie's bowl away when I let her out of her eating quarters.............)

Friday, January 29, 2010

Clarence is a talented guy

We met Clarence at a community breakfast and learned he had just started recording his singing.  He was such a fascinating guy that I asked if I could photograph him at home.

Before the snow came today Bill and I went to visit him and were enthusiastically greeted.

Listen to him here

Friday, January 22, 2010

My Official Taste Tester

He's not as food adventurous as I am, so if he likes it I know it's good.

A couple of days ago we ate at the Korean Barbeque restaurant in Greenville, South Carolina, and especially enjoyed the dried squid appetizer served in the "banchan" assorted little dishes of tasty, usually fiery hot, "go-withs" that are served with Korean dinners.

I searched the web and found a great blog which unfortunately hasn't been updated since 2007, but the recipes are good.  You should check it out:  My Korean Kitchen

Here's my DH taste-testing the dish which just came out of the wok.  I will refrigerate it and serve only a few morsels at a time with a meal.  EXCELLENT!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

First visit this year!

Northern Flicker waiting for a pileated woodpecker to leave the cedar log feeder.

(I'm waiting for a crop camera similar to the Canon 5D Mark II that has excellent high  ISO performance, but has better and faster low light focusing abilities.  The new 7D has reportedly better focusing, but doesn't fill my high ISO performance expectations.)  Update:  I've found it!  The 7D really does have VASTLY improved focus and I love it.  Check out My PBase 7D gallery.