Archive | original Gourmeted recipe

Verrry Raspberry Fro-Yo

It took me a week to fully recover from my home-cooked birthday party and the blogathon, but it was well worth it. A huge thanks for my family and friends who came to celebrate with my mom and I for our July birthdays, and for those who sponsored me for Blogathon 2009 for the benefit of the Greater Vancouver Food Bank. The party actually looked like a Facebook meetup, really, with my different groups of friends finally meeting each other after sort-of knowing each other on my Facebook wall and photos. Funny how this social networking goes. We had a fun party and I’m so glad that everybody was enjoying themselves and the food. That’s all that matters to me.

This Verrry Raspberry Frozen Yogurt was one of the desserts I made and served at the party. It’s so absolutely refreshing! Try it with (sweet) fresh blueberries…Oh my! Cold heaven in a mouthful. If you like a little bit of tartness with fruit, here’s your wish! It’s just a tad tart because of the yogurt complementing the yogurt’s tartness. A lot of our guest liked this over the sweeter and creamier flavor I made.

Verrry Raspberry Fro-Yo

And I know why: This is the Perfect “cure” for the heat wave!

If you’re in the Pacific Northwest like I am, you know how excruciatingly hot and painful to bear this week has been, especially if you don’t have A/C. So come on take out your ice cream maker if you haven’t already, and make this! Put yourself out of misery now.

This is easy to prepare for your ice cream/frozen yogurt maker:

Verrry Raspberry Frozen Yogurt

IngredientsDownload the print-ready PDF recipe

  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3//4 cup water
  • 350 grams fresh raspberries
  • 500 grams 2% Fage Greek yogurt
  • 1 cup cold milk

Preparation

1. Make a simple syrup by boiling water and sugar in a medium sized saucepan until all the sugar crystals are dissolved; no need to stir.

2. Add the raspberries and cook in medium heat until it starts to boil, then decrease to low-med heat. Stir with a heat resistant spatula, and occasionally pressing the berries against the bottom of the saucepan. You can mash it as fine or as chunky as you like. Cook until the mixture becomes thick, but not as thick as jam. Set aside to cool on a trivet first, then in the fridge for about 30 minutes.

3. In a medium sized bowl, pour all the (cold) ingredients and mix with a spatula first to avoid splattering, then with a hand mixer until well blended. You can add more fresh raspberries at this point if you like. Pour into prepared ice cream maker and mix until thick, about 30-35 minutes. You will notice that this does not thicken as fast as your usual creamy ice cream or frozen yogurt, but don’t worry.

Best if frozen at least 48 hours before consuming, but I won’t tell if you eat it right away!

Posted in dairy, dessert, frozen treats, fruits, healthier choices, original Gourmeted recipe13 Comments

Basa Fillets Baked in Garlic and Butter

Blogathon 2009Hello Friends! I’m doing this year’s Blogathon on July 25 and blog every 30 minutes for 24 hours to raise money for the Greater Vancouver Food Bank Society. If you are able, please sponsor me and make a donation pledge.

Butter. I love it and there’s no denying it. When I was really, really young, vegetables (snow peas, carrots, green beans and corn) cooked in butter and served with a sprinkle of salt blew my mind. These days I enjoy adding butter to meat and fish. It makes everything much better, just like bacon. I think they’re siblings.

Here, instead of frying basa fish, I baked it in butter:

Baked Basa Fish Fillet

Oh, and it was so good with the coconut rice!

Baked Basa Fillets in Garlic and ButterDownload the PDF recipe

Ingredients:

  • 2 fillet slabs of basa fish (mine was 1.4 lb in total), or any white fish of your preference
  • 3 tbsp butter, melted
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/8 tsp fresh ground pepper
  • 2 tbsp chopped garlic
  • 1/2 a lemon, cut in 1/2
  • a handful of cilantro, roughly chopped, for garnish

Preparation

1. Preheat oven to 400°F.

2. In a baking dish, mix the butter, garlic, salt and pepper. Place the fish fillets into the mixture, and then turn them so both sides are coated. Cover the dish with aluminum foil.

3. Bake for 10 minutes, then take out of the oven and turn off the heat. Squeeze the lemon, a quarter lemon for each fillet. Sprinkle with cilantro and cover again with aluminum foil. Place back in the oven for another 5-10 minutes, until the meat becomes flaky and the thinner edges begin to have some color. You will notice that you might end up with a lot of juice in the pan. That’s fine. You can either toss it, or spoon a little over the fillets to be served.

4. Slice and serve with rice.

To make coconut rice, use this proportion: For every cup of uncooked white rice, use 1/4 cup coconut milk (canned is perfectly fine) and 3/4 cups water.

Posted in baking, main dishes, original Gourmeted recipe, quick & easy, seafood38 Comments

Banana Walnut Bread

Could we have one too many Banana Bread recipes? Clearly, Laura, who has an entire website/blog dedicated to banana bread would agree with me when I say: NO.

What is it with banana bread that we have hordes of recipes for it? Are all our kitchens swelling with overripe bananas? (Mine is.) Are we predominantly banana eaters? (Or just meaning to eat banana and forgetting about them till they start to get mushy?) Whichever the case for all of you out there, I can pretty much speak for my family and friends that banana bread will always be accepted with wide open hands and mouths.

I know, I know…banana bread is so versatile that it can be adjusted for and with just about anything. Here at Gourmeted, we’ve already given you one that has almond butter and save-till-last cinnamon crumble top and another that is moist, dense and an undeniable indulgence thanks to the butter and cream. This time, I offer you a nice compromise between the two, and then some (nuts).

What’s different with this banana bread? It has vanilla yogurt, most number of bananas among the 3 recipes, and chopped walnuts. It is moist without being too dense, which is an issue for some. There is a good balance of nuts to bread (i.e. not too much) to give it an all around pleasurable bite after bite after bite.  So far, this has all the elements I want in a banana bread. I think I just found my new go-to banana bread recipe!

Banana Walnut Bread

I made it into 3 little loaves that’s the perfect size to give out. I kept one for myself, gave one to my parents and another to my friend and her fiance. If you want some, you’ll have to make it. I’ve none left to share. Haha. Time to get more bananas because I already used up my frozen ones.

Freezing bananas: If you have any overripe bananas and not quite ready to make something out of it, don’t throw it away. Heavens, no. Peel the bananas and place them in ziploc bags before popping in the freezer. Just defrost in the fridge before using, or simply defrost in the microwave for a few seconds.

BANANA WALNUT BREADDownload the PDF recipe

Ingredients (makes 3 small loaves)

•    2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
•    4 very ripe bananas, mashed well (about 2 cups mashed)
•    3/4 cup sugar
•    3/4 cups coarsely chopped walnuts
•    1/3 cup vanilla yogurt
•    2 large eggs, lightly beaten
•    6 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
•    1 tsp vanilla extract
•    1/2 tsp salt
•    3/4 tsp baking soda

Preparation

1. Preheat oven to 375°F. Line each small loaf pan with parchment paper, one strip lengthwise and another crosswise. If you use one big loaf pan, adjust the baking time accordingly.

2. In a large bowl, mix all dry ingredients together and set aside.

3. In a medium bowl, mix the mashed bananas, yogurt, eggs, butter, and vanilla extract.

4. Fold the banana mixture into the bowl of dry ingredients until just combined. The resulting batter would be thick. Pour into the parchment lined loaf pans.

5. Bake for 45 to 50 minutes if using small loaf pans, and begin to monitor doneness at 40 minutes. For larger pans, time may vary from 50 to 60 minutes. It’s done when the top is golden brown and a toothpick comes out clean when inserted in the middle.

6. Place the pans on a wire rack and let it cool for 10 minutes before sliding the bread out of the pan. Serve immediately or wait to cool before enjoying.

Posted in baking, bread, original Gourmeted recipe18 Comments

4th of July Munchies

I rarely make lists as posts, so consider this a treat.I didn’t even make one for Canada Day! Shame shame. Anyway, if you’re still looking for ideas for the weekend, here are some easy peasy suggestions, ye American neighbors.

Here are recipes for dessert (or snack) that require a little more work, but you will get a lot of love from the people who will enjoy it:

Or if you want to bake something that’s easy and still be good, try these Eggless Chocolate Cupcakes or Honey-Cheese Corn Muffins.

Yes, it’s true, when you come to my party you won’t see the usual fares. :p

Happy Independence Day weekend, friends!

Posted in appetizer, chocolate, dessert, dips and sauces, events, frozen treats, fruits, healthier choices, original Gourmeted recipe, poultry, quick & easy, salads, sweets0 Comments

Oven Roasted Potatoes with Beets in Garlic-Lemon-Thyme Dressing

Sorry about that long title, but serves its purpose of telling you exactly what you get. :-)

As I said earlier, I am participating in this summer week’s “Eating Down the Fridge” over at Kim O’Donnel’s A Mighty Appetite. I have to admit that this is indeed a “challenge” for me. When I am cooking for one or two, it’s very easy to slide into that It’s-Easier-To-Eat-Out Zone, especially when the weather is just plain seductive and it feels criminal to stay home.

If you only have a few weeks of semi-uninterrupted sunshine (as I type this, it is raining…welcome to our world), you enjoy every bit of it.

Kitsilano Beach

See what I mean?

Cardero's

We do our best to appreciate the glorious summer days of Vancouver. :-)

And then I find myself with a well-stocked fridge and pantry at the end of the week, except that 50% of the fresh food will probably go bad soon. Does that sound familiar?

I go back and forth this same old story. I’ve already confided on this blog that I still have this Waste-Not attitude with food because of the way I was raised. It’s really just common sense and practicality: simply eat what you buy.

I’m already seeing the benefits of Eating Down the Fridge:

1. I make an effort to eat breakfast these days. Usually, I’ll just skip it, which I know is bad, but I couldn’t help it. Now, I try harder. I want to finish the loaf of whole wheat bread instead of offering it up to the mold gods. And I pay more attention to the gala apples I bought that I meant to eat for breakfast or as snacks.

2. I am starting to remember stuff I froze that I still need to use. For example, the fresh-now-frozen thyme that went into this simple salad. I still have frozen peeled bananas that could easily go into banana bread or muffins.

3. The ‘limit’ of not going out to shop for more food, is stirring up my creative juices. What can I do with what I have? I still have a box of strawberries, a lonely floppy stalk of rhubarb and lots of gala apples. I can smell something in the oven already. :-) Have I told you I haven’t made any dessert out of rhubarb?! Never. So here’s my chance to prove to Amy that I am from this planet (she jokingly asked from which planet I was when she learned of this…haha), just that I’m discovering food that are common to most of you, but so new to me!

4. I resist the compulsion to buy more and more food. It’s like with clothes, you keep buying them because one day you think you have nothing to wear. You just have to look into your closet (in our case, pantry/fridge) to see that you have a lot!

5. I am more thoughtful of food. Sometimes life gets really too busy that the kitchen is acts like a pit stop where you grab something you can instantly eat and leave empty-handed and go to the store if there’s none. I think about food, what to prepare so I wouldn’t go hungry in the middle of the day (I work from home) and commune with food. Food is something to enjoy sitting down on the table, with friends and family.

6. That said, I feel like a child finding ingredients in the kitchen that I didn’t know I had. Two jars of baking powder anyone? I see things in doubles and not because of my eyesight. Time to do some inventory around here.

7. At the end of the week, I will have an almost-empty fridge that’s much easier to clean. A clean fridge to work with! I love it already.

During the day, I eat toasted bread with sunflower butter or butter. The other night I just cooked the flank steak with salt and pepper and a wine-soy gravy (still debating if I should post the bad photos…haha). I also had plain red-leaf lettuce salad with garlic dressing (that my brother calls my “Shawarma sauce” when he tasted it during our family dinner a few weekends ago). I’m proud to announce that I also saved that tub of organic vanilla yogurt before it expires in a week, and started eating it. I always get hungry and I didn’t realize I had all this food enough to satiate my every-3-hours hunger.

Last night, I made this simple salad of roasted Yukon Gold potatoes, boiled beets and a homemade garlic-lemon-thyme dressing made with those ingredients glended with olive and coconut oil and just salt and pepper. I love food that is easy to prepare and yet captivates you with comforting flavors and textures — homey, not complex.

Oven Roasted Potatoes with Beets in Garlic-Lemon-Thyme Dressing

A  little something about Yukon Gold Potatoes:

These are yellow-fleshed potatoes, compared to the whitish ones. Yukon Gold is a crossbreed between the North American white potato and a wild South American yellow-fleshed variety and was registered in Canada in 1980. They are good for boiling, baking, french-frying, but unsuitable for chipping. It has medium starch content and disintegrates when overcooked. Excellent for storage and holds well for long without sprouting (bonus for me).

I love their thin, smooth skin and buttery flavor. I overcooked some of the smaller pieces and the flesh separated from the prime real estate of a skin (read: roasted Yukon Gold potato skin is like flavor bling to my taste buds), into a soft, pillow-y mulch. It didn’t bother me at all because it was a nice kind of mush, and you’ll forget about it once you taste it. I should remember to buy more of these, seeing that it stores well and my sprouting russet family in a bag is testament to why I shouldn’t rely on them all the time.

Once I baked it, I tossed the thyme sprigs and the dressing while they were hot. Mmm. Once it cooled, I put some in a bowl with beet chunks and some greens and enjoyed it with a glass of chardonnay. What a great way to spend the rainy evening.

Oven-Roasted Yukon Gold Potatoes and Beets with Garlic-Lemon-Thyme DressingDownload the print-ready PDF recipe

Ingredients (serves 2 to 3)

•    8 Yukon Gold potatoes, cut in quarters (or more if they are big). Try to cut them about the same size.
•    2 whole medium beets, boiled and cut into chunks the same size as the potatoes (you can boil it at the same time you are oven-roasting the potatoes)
•    1 1/2 tbsp coconut oil
•    1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
•    1 tbsp olive oil
•    3/4 tsp sea salt, divided
•    1/4 tsp fresh ground pepper, divided
•    1 1/2 tsp fresh lemon juice
•    4 large cloves (or 6 medium) of garlic
•    8-10 sprigs of thyme
•    Optional: fresh greens

Preparation

1.    Pre-heat the oven to 400°F. In an oven safe glass baking dish, mix together potatoes, olive oil, 1/4 tsp ground pepper and 1/4 tsp sea salt making sure all the surfaces of the potatoes are coated with oil. Add more oil if needed. Carefully position potatoes with the flesh down, not the skin. The skin is too precious to have to stick to the pan.

2.    Place in the oven for 15 minutes then turn the potatoes and bake for another 10-15 minutes until the corners and skin of the potatoes. Total baking time depends on the sizes of your cut potatoes.

3.    In your small food processor (or magic bullet), blend together extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil, 1/4 tsp salt, 1/8 tsp ground pepper, garlic cloves, and 1 1/2 tsp lemon juice. Add more salt and pepper to suit your taste I personally just add more pepper, because I like the flavor of the garlic and lemon to take center stage). Pulse until the dressing is smooth and uniform. Set aside.

4.    As soon as you take the dish out of the oven, toss in the thyme sprigs and dressing with the potatoes in the dish. Let it cool down before serving with the beets and greens.

Posted in dessert, dining, healthier choices, original Gourmeted recipe, quick & easy, salads, vegetables11 Comments

Fry-Baked Tilapia

I forgot to mention that this is part of my efforts to “Eat Down The Fridge“, which simply means that I try to finish the food that I already have in the fridge and pantry before moving on to buying more. You know how we sometimes just accumulate food? Well, that’s the point of this experiment with Kim O’Donnel of The Washington Post’s A Mighty Appetite.

As a child, my absolute favorite food aside from fried chicken, was fried tilapia. I sure loved my fried stuff. When I didn’t know what to eat or our maids didn’t know what to feed me, they’d cook this because it’s sure to make me eat a lot. See, when I was younger than ten years old, I was so skinny and underweight. It wasn’t that I didn’t eat. I just need to eat more.

Everyone had their own theory as to why I was not gaining weight. My favorite and most remembered was my grandmother’s (mom’s mom) hypothesis that all the nutrients were going to my then very long hair. Ha ha.

Honestly, if I was served fried chicken and fried tilapia, I would just continue to eat until I was fat. Unfortunately (well fortunately!) I didn’t really gain weight until I was in college and that’s the time you don’t really want to gain any weight. Hahaha. I still continue to eat and enjoy tilapia, though.

Similar to the fry-baked chicken, I cooked this with the same methods but with different flavors. I went for something very (cliche?) Asian: ginger and green onions.

Fry-Bake Tilapia

Somebody told me that people don’t like looking at fish heads at the market and/or when cooking or eating. Uhm, do some people really think that the fish they eat are headless?

Ginger Tilapia

The tilapia was so darn good! Trust me, I’m a tilapia connoisseur from many years of first hand taste tests. ;-)

Fry-Bake TilapiaDownload the print-ready PDF file

Ingredients
•    1 med-large tilapia
•    1 onion (halved, sliced)
•    3 stalks of green onion
•    3 thin slices of ginger
•    1/2 cup chicken broth
•    1/2 cup dry white wine
•    1/2 tsp salt
•    3 cloves of garlic, mashed
•    olive oil

Preparation
1.    In med-high heat, heat olive oil and wait for it to ‘ripple’ in a frying pan. Fry the  fish about 2-3 minutes each side until golden brown. Here’s the cooking test I use as a guide: It’s good to flip once the skin doesn’t stick to the frying pan anymore.
2.    Transfer the fish into a rectangular glass baking dish. Preheat oven to 375°F.
3.    In the same pan, saute the sliced onions until they become dark brown on the edges, then add on top of the fish.
4.    Still using the same pan, pour the wine and allow to boil until it’s reduced to half. Add ginger slices and chicken broth cook for a couple of minutes. Turn off the heat and transfer everything in the pan to the tilapia in the baking dish. Put fresh ground pepper on top of fish. Cover the glass dish with aluminum foil with 2 edges opposite each other is open (i.e. there is a vent).
5.    Place in the preheated oven and bake for 15 minutes. Remove foil, put green oonion, and cover again for 5 minutes before transfering on serving plate.

Posted in Asian dish, baking, dessert, experiments, fried, healthier choices, original Gourmeted recipe, reviews, seafood8 Comments

Beef Rhubarb Potstickers

Could it be that my brain is now part-rhubarb? I wouldn’t doubt it really. I have to admit that although I’ve made many dishes with rhubarb by now, they are all savory. I can’t help it if that sour stalk is so good.

Had I been more prepared, I really would have loved to make the filling with pork and shrimp, but I wasn’t. In fact, I was late for the Daring Cooks’ Challenge deadline last Sunday. After all the talk about it online, I built up a gargantuan craving for it, hence, this:

Potstickers

I’ve made potstickers before but failed miserably with the pleating. Now…thanks to Jen’s recipe with detailed photos, they now closely resemble the real thing! I love it! I couldn’t help but admire my handiwork. Haha.

I did follow our challenge’s dough recipe proportions and the rest are all mine. It was very, very good. If you don’t have rhubarb, just add a little more meat and 1 tbsp lemon juice.

I’ll post a more organized recipe tomorrow, including the PDF download. I just wanted to share this quickly for those of you who have been waiting for it since I posted a mobile photo. :-)

Potsticker Wrappers

Ingredients:

  • 250 g all purpose flour (I used unbleached)
  • 113 g warm water

Preparation (How I made it)

  1. In a medium bowl, place the flour and add half of the water. Stir with a spoon. Continue to add the remaining water little by little, probably by teaspoons.
  2. Continue to mix into a cohesive ball by hand. Place on your clean counter that’s been sprinkled with flour to prevent sticking, and knead for 10 minutes.
  3. Place back inside the bowl and cover with a damp cloth for 15 minutes.
  4. After 15 minutes, shape dough into a shallow dome and cut into 1 1/2-inch thick slices. Leave one slice on the counter and place the others back into the bowl and cover with the damp towel. Slice the strip into 3/4 inch pieces and shape and flatten down with your palm into small discs. Place each disk on the counter and flatten further with your rolling pin. Continue with the rest of the dough. Be careful about putting the dough on top of each other. I made the time-consuming mistake of not putting enough flour between wrappers and my hard work went back to square one of being one big dough.

Filling the wrappers

  1. Put a wrapper on the palm of your hand and drop a tablespoon of filling at the center. Fold the wrapper in half and press firmly to attach the top-center portion.
  2. From the center, start pleating the single side of the wrapper (not both) but scrunching farther side on top of the previous pleat. Continue until you almost reach the end and you get a small teardrop-shaped hole. Simply tuck in the bottom of the ‘teardrop’ into the pointed top end of the teardrop. Each dumpling will look like the semi-circular women’s purses.

Beef Rhubarb Filling

  • 200 g ground beef (or other meat/s of your choice)
  • 1/3 cup yellow onion, chopped
  • 1/3 cup rhubarb, chopped
  • 1/3 cup button mushrooms, chopped (sauted in med heat for 2 mins to let the juices out
  • 1/3 cup celery, chopped
  • 1/3 cup carrot, chopped
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1/4 tsp fresh ground pepper
  • 4 stalks of green onion, chopped

Preparation

In a small saucepan, saute onion, rhubarb and celery for 3 minutes in medium-high heat. Set aside and let it cool before mixing with all the other ingredients.

Pan-Frying

On a frying pan with vegetable oil in high heat, cook the dumplings until the bottoms are golden brown in color. Add 1/2 cup water and cover. Let it cook until the water is almost gone. Remove the lid and let it cook for another 2 minutes.

Optional Dip: You can mix soy sauce, white vinegar with a smashed garlic. Very simple.

Posted in appetizer, Asian dish, beef, Daring Cooks, main dishes, original Gourmeted recipe, vegetables24 Comments

Baked Butter Chicken Fillets

I forgot about this recipe that should have been posted over a month ago. Today’s a lazy Sunday for me and what better way to commemorate such a fabulous day, I’m going to post a really easy recipe with a really short intro. Hope you’re enjoying your Sunday!

Baked Butter Chicken Fillets

Download PDF recipe

Baked Butter Chicken Fillets Download print-ready PDF recipe

Ingredients

  • .85 lb (about .4 kg) of chicken fillet (chicken tenders sliced crosswise in half for thinner meat)
  • 1/4 tsp salt, plus additional salt for sprinkling
  • 1/4 tsp fresh ground pepper
  • juice of a quarter of a lime
  • 3 tbsps unsalted butter, softened enough to spread with a brush or spoon over meat
  • 1 sprig of rosemary, remove the leaves and chop

Preparation

1.  Mix 1/4 tsp salt, pepper and lime in a medium bowl. Mix chicken in the mixture, cover with plastic wrap and marinate for half an hour in the fridge.

2. Pre-heat oven to 350°F. Take out chicken from your marinade and lay the pieces flat (smooth/pretty side up) on an oven-safe glass dish. From about a foot above the dish, lightly sprinkle the fillets with salt. Turn over, and sprinkle again.

3. Brush the top of each chicken fillet with softened butter.

4. Bake in the oven for about 20 minutes. Turn off the oven and take out the baking dish. Sprinkle the chicken with rosemary and cover with aluminum foil. Place it back in the oven (still turned off) for 10 minutes. Serve with vegetables and/or rice. The chicken is tasty enough to be eaten without the need for gravy.

Posted in baking, dairy, dessert, dining, experiments, original Gourmeted recipe, poultry, quick & easy9 Comments

The BRT Salad

By BRT Salad I mean: Beet-Rhubarb-Tuna Salad. Yes, you read that right.

[Note: Much thanks to Emily, who not only believed this seemingly-ghastly combo, but also reminded me to post about it! :)]

Before you think I’m completely off my rocker (well, I am but that’s beside the point) and unsubscribe or close your browser window or listen to your brain’s warning: Abort! Abort! Hear me out. It might sound completely ridiculous but not only is it completely doable–it’s surprisingly good.

It might not look much, either (unless you’re like me who likes this kind of pink not only on her hair but with her food as well):

Beet Rhubarb Tuna Salad

Reserve your judgments for now as this could be your unexpected love affair this summer. Truly. What an amazing burst of flavors and textures. So fresh and juicy! I finished two…TWO big bowls of this right after I took this photo.

How in the world did I come about this unlikely flavor combination? Well, back in the Philippines, we eat a chicken macaroni salad that has chicken shreds and pineapple tidbits in a mayo base. It’s the usual fare in our family events. In Hawaii, you’ll find something similar as a side dish in their plate lunch. You might be thinking: ‘Well, that still doesn’t mention any of the BRT ingredients, Joy…” Yes, but the taste combination was what I was after. This recipe was my very first rhubarb cooking experience and from which I realized that when cooked in sweet syrup, it tastes like canned pineapple. So there’s my first substitution: rhubarb for pineapple. Second, the tuna instead of chicken.

The beets?

Beets

Well, they’re the real variables here. I happen to have a bunch of beets that needed to be eaten. I also added celery, which I’ve always found to be very good with tuna, and carrots for crunch and a variation in sweetness on top of the rhubarb and beets.

Celery and Carrots

It really almost tastes like the chicken macaroni salad with strawberry jell-O, except that instead of jell-O, you have beets that taste like corn.

I’m sure I’ve confused you by now! However, if I still have your attention and you’re willing to indulge me by being adventurous and trying this recipe, please do. I’ll be a very happy experimenter, and hopefully, you’ll be a happy and fulfilled tester. I made the ‘mistake’ of mixing the beets with the mayo-ed mixture. For your and your family/friends’ sakes, just top your salad with the beet cubes if you prefer not to have an electrifying pink salad. I like it personally, but it’s all up to you.

Do you dare take the BRT challenge? ;-) Don’t worry, I’ve eaten this many times and it’s been served to very satisfied ‘customers’ (a.k.a. family and friends) the past two weeks! C’mon, it’s not like I’m telling you to try offal

Here’s the recipe:

The BRT (Beet-Rhubarb-Tuna) SaladDownload the print-ready PDF recipe

Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1/3 cup white or brown sugar (I’ve tried both)
  • 1 stalk rhubarb, chopped
  • 1 170-gram can of tuna chunks or flakes
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise (I used homemade)
  • 3 medium sized beets, boiled, peeled, cut in  1/2″-3/4″ cubes
  • 1 stalk celery, chopped
  • 1 carrot, julienned
  • lettuce, washed and cut or ripped by hand
  • salt and fresh ground pepper to taste

Preparation

1. Combine water and sugar in a small saucepan on medium heat. Wait for the sugar to completely dissolve before adding the chopped rhubarb. Once it starts boiling again, time for 1.5 minutes and take off the heat to cool.

2. Quickly drain the now-mushy rhubarb (keep the syrup to use for sauce or meat marinade) and place in a medium size bowl. Add mayonnaise, tuna, celery and fresh ground pepper (I use a lot). Mix them together first and add salt to sut your taste. You can either add the beets now or just top your salad with it to avoid having a bright pink salad.

3. Serve on a bed of lettuce or on its own. Enjoy the lovely seasonal flavors!

Posted in appetizer, experiments, healthier choices, original Gourmeted recipe, salads, seafood, snacks, vegetables3 Comments

Baked Garlic Rhubarb Wings with Sweet & Sour Sauce

Up until a week ago, I was a Rhubarb Virgin: the kind who’s never cooked with rhubarb, let alone taste it.

Now that the collective pause, dropped jaw, raised eyebrow, and “No way!” has been released into the ether…yes, it’s very well true and possible. I didn’t grow up here or anywhere near North America and only celebrated my 10th year in the pacific northwest and the mere mention of rhubarb 5 years ago won’t even incite any mental image. Is it a root? A fruit? You could smack me with a stalk and I wouldn’t recognize my first meeting with a rhubarb.

So I finally decided to try it.

I ordered a couple of stalks from Spud.ca with my fresh harvest box when I tried their service, then I got four more at Granville Island after seeing how incredibly cheap they were. For a few days I was well-stocked with rhubarb with no idea what to do with them. I didn’t even know what they tasted like. I read they were sour. Having no reference of the taste, I cut up a slice and tasted it raw. Indeed. Who needs sour candy?

Here were the few things I knew about rhubarb before experimenting with them:

  • eye-squinting sour when raw.
  • apparently good made as a compote
  • popularly combined with strawberries for pie (although it was unimaginable to me at the time)

After initially cooking it in simple syrup, I’ve found them incredibly good to use as a substitute for pineapple in salads, and they easily become mushy when cooked even further. I strained it out to use in my tuna-beet-rhubarb salad and saved the rosy pink for later use, I was sure something will come out of it!

That rhubarb syrup and more rhubarb made it into this chicken wing experiment and I must say that it yielded the best results out of all my exploits with this once-foreign-to-me sour stem. I was hankering for a good “treat” after yoga last night and thought of Hawaiian-inspired (i.e. with pineapple) chicken wings, but I didn’t have pineapple, so I used rhubarb instead. And here it is:

Garlic Rhubarb Chicken Wings

It’s quite possibly the tastiest and most delicious wings I’ve ever made! I’m stunned at the results, to be honest with you.

Thank you rhubarb! Thank you adventurous self! Don’t you just love it when you risk making something completely new and it ends up being one of your best dishes? :-) I was a very tired but very happy and well-fed yoga bum.

Here’s the recipe:

Baked Garlic Rhubarb Wings with Sweet & Sour SauceDownload the PDF recipe

Ingredients for the Wings

•    1.8 lbs chicken wings
•    2 tbsp smashed and finely chopped garlic
•    1/3 cup ketchup
•    1 tsp hot sauce (tweak to your taste)
•    2 tbsp soy sauce
•    1 tbsp coconut oil (you can substitute with another oil of your choice)
•    3 tbsp finely chopped rhubarb
•    3 tbsp rhubarb syrup (from cooking rhubarb in simple syrup, or just use 1 tbsp brown sugar, honey, or agave nectar)
•    ¼ tsp salt
•    ½ tsp fresh ground pepper

Ingredients for the Sauce
•    2 tbsp brown sugar
•    2 tbsp water
•    ½ tbsp lemon juice
•    3 ½ tbsp chopped rhubarb
•    4 tsp soy sauce
•    1 tbsp honey
•    1 tbsp ketchup
•    1/8 tsp salt
•    1/8 tsp pepper
•    3 tsp whole milk
•    1 tsp cornstarch mixed in 3 tsp water

Preparation for the Wings

1.    In a big bowl, mix all the ingredients except for the wings. Taste and add more salt, pepper and hot sauce as you wish until you are satisfied with it.
2.    Toss the chicken wings in the big bowl, cover and let it sit in the fridge for 15 minutes as you pre-heat the oven to 425°F with the tray on the upper third portion.
3.    Line a cookie sheet with aluminum foil for easier cleaning later on.
4.    Once your oven is preheated, place the chicken wings on the lined cookie sheet, but keep the remaining mixture in the bowl. Bake for 20 minutes. Make the sauce.
5.    Take the cookie sheet out of the oven and turn the wings over using a pair of tongs. Using a spoon or a brush, put on the remaining mixture on the wings. Bake for another 13 to 18 minutes depending on how ‘dry’ you want the wings to be. 13 minutes is best if you want a lot more juicy meat to eat with rice, for example. 18 minutes would make it really nice and brown.
6.    Take out of the oven, turn the wings to prevent the top from drying up, and let it cool for 5 minutes before transferring on your serving plate. Enjoy!

Preparation for the Sauce

1.    In small saucepan, heat water and sugar in low-med heat until the sugar is completely dissolved. There’s no need to stir.
2.    Add lemon juice and chopped rhubarb and cook until rhubarb softens. With a heat-safe spatula, press the rhubarb against the bottom of the pan until you get a paste.
3.    Add the soy sauce, ketchup, honey, milk, salt and pepper. Let it simmer for a five minutes and turn off the heat. Stirring the cornstarch-water mixture to make sure the cornstarch hasn’t settled at the bottom of your small bowl, pour to the hot sauce and stir. You can keep it on the stove (turned off) while the wings are cooking.
4.    Serve with the wings.

Posted in appetizer, baking, dips and sauces, experiments, healthier choices, original Gourmeted recipe, poultry23 Comments