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Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins [Aug. 20th, 2008|11:46 am]
Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins These rich and chocolatey muffins kick start your morning.

  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup butter, melted
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp baking powder
  • 4 ripe bananas, mashed
  • 3/4 cup chocolate chips

Heat the oven to 400F.

Beat together the egg, butter, milk, and vanilla.

Stir in the flour, sugar, salt, and baking powder. Mix only lightly; lumps in batter are fine.

Fold in the banana and the chocolate chips.

Generously butter a muffin pan. Fill each muffin cup to the top with batter. Sprinkle generously the top of each muffin with brown sugar.

Bake for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the centre of a muffin comes out clean. Remove from oven and let sit for five minutes.

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Orange Curry of Chicken Breast with White Peaches and Ataulfo Mango [Jul. 3rd, 2008|11:35 pm]
Due to the milder nature of my orange curry paste, I decided that a curry with lively fruits would be more appropriate than a meat- or vegetable-heavy one. This result is a creamy concoction of delicate flavours and textures. Note that red mangoes or even other yellow ones, like alfonso, should not be used due to the much higher fibre content, which might ruin the texture of this dish. If you are unable to obtain ataulfos, lychees or longans would make an adequate substitute.

  • 4 tbsp orange curry paste [link]
  • 1 1/2 cups coconut cream
  • 1 1/2 cups coconut milk
  • 2 tbsp fish sauce
  • 1 1/2 tbsp palm sugar
  • 3/4 lb boneless skinless chicken breast, cut into 1/2" cubes
  • 2 ripe white peaches, peeled, depitted, and cut into 1/2" cubes
  • 1 ripe ataulfo mango, peeled and cut into 1/4" cubes
  • 12 Thai basil leaves

In a wok over high heat, mix the coconut cream, and if canned, 1 tbsp oil to assist in the separation process. Once hot, fry the curry paste in the cream. Cook for six to ten minutes, stirring often, until rich and flavourful. Dilute with coconut milk if the mixture looks to be at risk of burning. Add the fish sauce and sugar, and stir for one minute or until sugar is entirely dissolved.

Mix in the chicken and allow to cook for three minutes, stirring frequently. Add the remaining coconut milk and return to a boil. Cook for another two to three minutes until everything is thick and integrated. Gently mix in the fruit and cook for another minute to heat through. Stir in the basil, cook for 30 more seconds, and remove from heat.

Garnish with chillies, shredded lime leaves, or sprigs of fresh Thai basil. Serve immediately with jasmine rice.

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Orange Curry Paste [Jul. 3rd, 2008|11:31 pm]
This curry paste is the result of my delight at finding a lovely, flavourful orange chilli pepper at my local Asian grocer here in Toronto Chinatown East. I had heard of orange chillies from Asia before, but never had the fortune of encountering them during my forays into Asian food markets. Eager to experiment, I purchased it and all of the other ingredients common in curry pastes. Note that this is not strictly Thai; orange curries are generally water- or broth-based and made with a very conservative number of ingredients, deriving their spiciness in actuality from red chillies. The curry paste here is of my own creation, and is intended to be fried in coconut cream in order to properly release its flavours. It is similar to a red curry paste, but with the ingredients modified slightly to account for the milder flavour and colour of the chillies, but it could certainly be used in very similar ways with good results.

  • 8 orange chillies, halved and deseeded
  • 8 cloves garlic, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1 1/2 tbsp galangal (Thai ginger), peeled and chopped
  • 1 tbsp turmeric, peeled and chopped
  • 1 tbsp krachai (wild ginger), chopped
  • 2 stalks lemongrass, finely chopped
  • 2 shallots, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 4 lime leaves, finely chopped
  • 1 1/2 tbsp coriander roots, chopped
  • 1 tsp coriander seeds
  • 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1/2 tsp white peppercorns
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp shrimp paste

Roast first the coriander seeds, and subsequently the cumin. Roasting individually prevents burning of one or the other. Run through a spice grinder or pound in a mortar and pestle.

Add all the ingredients into a food processor or blender in the order listed. Blend until finely chopped. When volume is reduced and blender / processor is no longer breaking things down adequately, transfer to a mortar and pestle and pound until a paste is achieved.

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Barbecue Pork Sandwich with Apples, Caramelized Onion, and Roasted Garlic Sauce [Mar. 21st, 2007|11:12 pm]
[Tags|, , ]

The end result of this recipe is a flavourful, messy sandwich with tender, juicy pork slices.

  • 7 tbsp butter
  • 1 small onion, minced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 2 tbsp worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 tsp dry mustard
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 2 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp sriracha or hot chili sauce
  • 3 sweet onions (such as Vidalia or Spanish), cut into 1/4" thick by 1" long strips
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 medium sized pork tenderloins
  • 8 cloves garlic
  • 1 tbsp stone ground mustard, with seeds
  • 1 egg
  • 3/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 3 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, and cut into 1/8" thick slices
  • 4 sub rolls
  • 8 leaves green leaf lettuce

Prepare the barbecue sauce: Melt 2 tbsp butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the minced onion and garlic and sautee for 10 minutes. Reduce heat to medium and stir in the ketchup, worcestershire sauce, vinegar, brown sugar, dry mustard, lemon juice, chili powder, and hot sauce. Cook at a simmer, adjusting temperature as necessary, for 15 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool to room temperature.

Caramelize the onions: In saucepan over medium high heat, melt 2 tbsp of butter. Add the onions and cook for 10 minutes, stirring every couple of minutes. Reduce heat to medium-low, add the salt, and continue to cook, stirring every five minutes or so, until dark golden brown, about 30 minutes.

Cook the pork: Heat oven to 375F. Place the pork loins in a baking pan and coat generously with barbecue sauce. Cook until internal temperature of 170F is reached, basting with more barbecue sauce every 10 minutes or so. Remove, allow to cool slightly, and slice against the grain into 1/4" thick slices.

Make the sauce: In a saucepan over medium heat, melt 1 tbsp of butter. Cook the remaining eight garlic cloves for 15 minutes until golden and soft. Remove and allow to cool. In a blender, combine the egg, the mustard, and the garlic, and blend until uniform. In a slow stream while mixing at a low setting, add the vegetable oil to form a creamy, mayonnaise-like sauce.

Roast the apples: Melt the remaining 2 tbsp of butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the apples and cook until softened and slightly golden, about 15 minutes.

Assemble the sandwiches: Cut the rolls in half. Place a leaf of lettuce, and then apple slices. Top with pork, caramelized onion, another lettuce leaf, and a generous quantity of the sauce.

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Nuer Pad Ped (Thick Red Curry Beef) [Mar. 19th, 2007|10:45 pm]
[Tags|, , ]

The pad ped families of curry are thicker than the soupier standard curries, containing less coconut and thus much less rich. This recipe presents a mild but lively curry rich with a collage of crunchy vegetables.

  • 2 cups coconut cream
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 4 tbsp red curry paste [link]
  • 2 tbsp fish sauce
  • 2 tbsp palm sugar
  • 8 lime leaves, stems removed and thinly slivered
  • 1 lb marinating flank steak, cut, against the grain, into thin 1" long slices
  • 15 snake beans, cut into 1" pieces
  • 1 cup sliced bamboo shoots
  • 1 green pepper, cut into 3/4" cubes
  • 1 1/2 red, orange, or yellow peppers in some combination, cut into 3/4" cubes
  • 30 Thai basil leaves

In a wok over high heat, warm the coconut cream. Bring to a rolling boil, stirring constantly, until either the oil of the coconut separates or the mixture becomes thick. Add the curry paste and stir for one minute. Follow with the fish sauce, the palm sugar, and the limes leaves. Stir and cook one minute, mixing in some coconut milk if the mixture overthickens. Add the coconut milk, return to a boil, and cook one more minute until thick again.

Reduce heat to medium high, add the beef, cook for two minute, and then stir in the snake beans and the bamboo shoots. Cook for an additional two minutes. Finally, add the peppers and the basil, and cook for one more minute.

Serve immediately with jasmine rice.

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