From our Food Goddess, TaMara:
I’m heading out for a much needed girls’ day out with LFern. But I didn’t want to leave you without a recipe exchange. I thought it would be fun to focus on one of JeffreyW’s specialties, he likes to make his own spice mixes and hot sauces. Tonight’s recipe exchange was inspired by his great post this week, Chinese Five Spice.
I was a believer in making my own spice mixes when I put together his Fajita Spice (recipe here), which is better than anything pre-made in the store.
He also loves to make hot sauces, recipes and photos here and here.
One of the most requested sauce recipes is a guest recipe from Down Under, Piri Piri (recipe here).
Not technically a spice, but JeffreyW made his own Garlic Breadcrumbs this week, (click here).
What’s on your plate for the weekend? I’ll going to a few open houses and taking Bixby out to enjoy the predicted spring weather. Do you make any of your own spices mixes or sauces? Give us your favorite recipe.
I knew what tonight’s featured recipe would be as soon as I saw JefferyW’s beautiful photographs (top and below).
Chinese Five Spice from his post:
I was browsing among various recipes for green beans and noticed a call for Chinese five spice in one of them and wondered if I had the ingredients to make my own. Yes! – or at least close enough for my purposes. I looked over several recipes and they all had the same ingredients with a few variations: Star anise, fennel seeds, cinnamon, cloves, and peppercorns. Some used Szechuan peppercorns and others called for the more familiar black peppercorns, one recipe used cassia bark in lieu of the cinnamon, there were differences in the ratios so I just eyeballed mine as I loaded them into my little spice grinder. I ended up with about a quarter cup of some great smelling stuff.
Those are the Szechuan peppercorns between the cinnamon sticks. They have an interesting effect in the mouth, some heat and a numbing sensation on the lips. Another name for them is prickly ash seed.
After all of that, I used about a teaspoon of the spice powder in the soy sauce marinade of the chicken for the green bean dish pictured above. That was a simple enough recipe, the most prep went into the sauce: 1/2 cup soy sauce, 1/2 cup chicken stock, a tablespoon of sesame oil, a tablespoon of ginger garlic paste, a tablespoon of honey, and a tablespoon of rice vinegar with a little corn starch to thicken it in the pan. I steamed the beans for five minutes while the chicken was cooking then added them to the pan with the chicken and then poured in the sauce and cooked until it thickened, a few more minutes.
That’s if for this week. No Bixby update, but he’s doing great, each day he surprises me by what he learns and understands. My little black kitty, Missy has to have surgery next week, so good thoughts would be appreciated. Thanks and have a great weekend – TaMara
damn. is everybody dead?
Raises hand, languidly.
@tybee: Nah but Cole put a hoop thread up hours ago and that died. The cat people can only last so ling.
As a dead man, I’ve just begun trying out sous vide Am finding the available recipe selection thin but it’s promising. And techie enough to keep me interested..
Cod, you must be kiddink.
floundering around, i sea. must have just been a fluke. raven seems to have come over from the dock side….
As with Abe Vigoda, not yet.
Yo, I got no time for spellcheck!
you should take a minnow to spell czech.
@tybee: The had a human interest piece on one of the games with a coach that is from the most czech town in the country!
as to recipes, i’m going in the morn to stalk the elusive yet mighty eastern salt marsh bivalve. i anticipate roasting them over an open fire tomorrow evening with a sauce of sriracha, horse radish and catsup with a few crackers on the side.
@trollhattan: Oh good, we’re getting started early. Usually its 1am before the huh-huh-uh-huh comes out.
ETA: @tybee hush, mother finder.
Everyone’s a critick.
you haddock me blenny at one pointer but i lobster and my walleye.
@tybee: Whadda you take for a haddock?
6/0 and a cup breaming with asp.
or you could just perch on that swordfish.
mai naem mobile
If you are out of hot sauce(red devil kind of stuff) and you don’t feel like going to the store, take some ketchup(2-4 tbsp), add 1-2 tsp cayenne pepper, add lemon to tast( ~2-4tbsp) , mix.and voila your hot sauce.replacement. Also, this is an indian thing – take jalapenos/serranos and ginger approx 1 to 3 pepper to ginger proportion. Stick it in the blender with as little water as you can put without ruining your blender. Stick the mix in an ice cube tray in the freezer. The ice cubes will stay good for months in a container. Use one cube to put a kick in a stew/curry/soup – esp. good in cream based soups.
Iowa Old Lady
Someone I know online lives in the SF area and says there was a shooting outside her neighborhood school this afternoon. Helicopters are still circling. It sound like one kid shot another. I suspect that because it doesn’t fit the “crazy kid terrorized the school” story pattern, it won’t make the news. Ho hum, another day at the OK Corral.
ETA: I’m guessing it’s this: http://sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com/2015/03/20/1-person-injured-in-shooting-in-front-of-el-cerrito-high-school-suspect-at-large/
@efgoldman: Won’t find no brains here.
mai naem mobile
I see people buying that disgusting premadeg garlic bread at the grocery store that you still.have to heat/toast. Are these people stupid? Jeezus, get a loaf of French bread, cut in half lengthways, spread some garlic,garlic powder/salt after buttering , stick in the oven. You can stick other spices on it if you want but seriously you’re going to buy this stuff?
Not that Cole reads this blog, but:
Hey, just thought I would mention that, since the “bad answer link” thing we discussed a few days ago, I got so frustrated that I switched to the desktop version of Balloon Juice on my phone—and it works pretty well. I don’t have a huge phone screen (Moto X first generation), but the text is about the same size as on the mobile version, everything works—to the extent that FYWP “works”—plus you get comment numbers and the ability to actually edit a comment.
@tybee: that’s not spellcheck, that’s texting under the influence. just put. the phone. down.
I might do that. It’s very frustrating. The only thing I don’t like about the desktop site on the phone is that I can’t simply scroll down to the bottom, because after the last comment are a ton of ads.
you cannery mako me.
@tybee: that is corrected, I continued.
oh, shot, i am just no goad at thus.
Prepackaged spice blend: ras el hanout.
Simple DIY spice blend: Toasted cumin/black pepper (equal parts by volume) ground. A staple of South Indian cooking but amazing in pretty much any preparation with roots from Greece to Japan.
Sauces: Thomas Keller’s “russian dressing” is a big fave. It is actually two sauces in one: The tomato marmalade that you make as one of the components is awesome, and then the dressing (a sauce choron) for which you use it is epic with seafood or poultry, or on sandwiches, or as a salad dressing.
75 g minced shallot
40 g minced onion
30 g water
15 g (1 T) red wine vinegar
36 g (2 1/2 T) sugar
825 g (1 standard can) strained peeled and seeded tomatoes
Combine shallot, onion, and water in saucepan, bring to simmer and cook 7-8 mins / until tender. Add vinegar and sugar and simmer until sugar is dissolved. Add tomatoes, increase heat to medium-high, and cook [stirring frequently] until mixture is very dry. Remove from heat and reserve / refrigerate; it keeps a while.
100 g egg yolks (3 large)
50 g cornichon juice
100 g clarified butter at ~body temp (100 F)
10 g finely minced horseradish (or 2 tsp bottled horseradish)
3 g cornichon brunoise (1/8″ dice)
3 g tomato brunoise (1/8″ dice peeled/seeded)
50 g tomato marmalade
Set a bowl over a saucepan of simmering water. Once the bowl is warm to the touch, add the eggs and cornichon juice and whisk together until the eggs form ribbons. Slowly whisk in the clarified butter until emulsified, then add the remaining ingredients and gently whisk or stir until they are evenly blended.
The fun thing about this sauce is that if you don’t mind busting up the diced cornichon and tomato, you can make it, set it aside, refrigerate it, and then blitz it in a blender to re-combine it whenever you want to eat it.
@mai naem mobile
To make any garlic bread a cut above: Slice a clove or two of garlic in half lengthwise. Rub the cut side all over the crust of the loaf before brushing garlic butter onto the soft side of the split bread.
The pre-made loaves at the market aren’t all that awful (and often on sale at the bakery clearance rack at like a dollar a loaf), so long as the foil bag with the loaf in it is put under the broiler (not too close to the broiler element, though), and thoroughly heated on each side to crisp up the product before removing the loaf from the bag and broiling the buttered sides until golden.
i coelacanth what you’re doing.
As a sturgeon not working for scale, I skein the internets just for the halibut and buoy do I ever get schooled.
with baited breath, i await your crappie rejoinder.
@tybee: Is someone having a Wet Dream (5:04)?
OT, but Rachel had a nice segment on Guns with History (3:27) tonight. It’s very well done.
Once courted a mermaid but she gave me the crabs. Grouper? Heck, she wouldn’t even let me net her. I was floundering but my sole was saved by salmon special, yes, a real perch.
I made a batch of tomato and chicken curry (murgh kari, according to my recipe notes) tonight. The curry spices are nothing out of the ordinary, but to go with the leftovers tomorrow night I think I’ll make a favorite hot mango chutney, from the Whole Chile Pepper cookbook.
2 teasp ground cayenne pepper
5 sml green chiles, such as Serranos, stems and seeds removed, chopped
1 lrg ripe mango, peeled, chopped
3 dried apricots, soaked in water until soft, chopped
2 tbsp orange or lime juice
2 teasp ground coriander
1 teasp ground cumin
1 teasp ground ginger
¼ teasp ground cloves
¼ teasp ground nutmeg
2 teasp honey or sugar
Blend until smooth. It has a nice bright flavor.
and yet salmon will bight again.
a throw back, she was, but we all grunnion when you lobster.
well, that killies the rest of the puns.
A useful tip that someone here mentioned to get to the bottom: click “Reply” to any comment. That takes you to the new-comment box, right below the last current comment. Very quick. Just remember to erase the little link snippet in the comment box.
There’s a chain of fast-food restaurants call Nando’s that started in the UK but has spread to Canada and the US. They specialize in peri peri chicken. None around me, unfortunately. I bought a bottle of the marinade online, but I haven’t gotten the grill out yet.
It was just this week that they moved the tags above the post on the front page on mobile. Bleh. I don’t think Cole et al have any control over the stupid way the plugin that renders the mobile site does its thing.
While I’m not really a fan of the Vice site, they do have a less heavily redacted version of the National Intelligence Estimate that led up to the Iraq invasion. Guess what? None of the Bush administration’s reasons for invasion are supported by the once secret document they claimed demanded it.
This isn’t so much a spice as an ingredient. I try to never run low on duxelles. Take a quarter to half stick of butter and melt in a good heavy skillet on medium low to low heat and sweat a diced onion in the butter. Add a pound of mushrooms diced to about a quarter inch and a heavy pinch of salt. The salt and heat will draw out the water in the shrooms, which will submerge the contents of the pan. Keep the pan on a low boil and stir occasionally until the liquid is evaporated and add a quarter cup of sherry (or more if that’s your taste) and whatever mushroom friendly spice you like. I use a quarter teaspoon of fresh ground nutmeg. Continue to cook until the additional liquid is evaporated. This will keep in the fridge for up to a month, especially if you use more butter to make a quasi confit. It has a super strong mushroom flavor and is a critical ingredient for beef wellington. It is a wonderful filling for savory tarts and the like.
@justawriter: this reads like a secret ingredient elixir, that special ‘something’ that makes your beef wellington disappear from the potluck first.
Mike in NC
@Baud: So they want any drooling toothless moran in WV to be able to buy a gun and carry it anywhere? Well played ALEC. Media reporting on this will be nonexistent.
@Origuy: Nando’s is a South African chain, not UK. And apparently they’re in the US now in the general D.C. area.
@Origuy: I looked at Nando’s web site and they say there isn’t one within 35 miles of my zip code (11377). But according to Yelp, there is one at 12 Clark Street in Brooklyn. Not around the corner from me but close enough that a few buses or a subway trip will get me there.
Also there seem to be several locations in Baltimore, MD. I have friends in Baltimore I can visit…
@Violet: Didn’t know they were based in SA. I went to one in Carlisle, England. I knew they were in the DC area. Looks like they are opening in Chicago, too.
I was going to go to Ottawa last fall, but cancelled my trip. There are several there and in Toronto. Closest to me is Vancouver.
Man, sorry I missed this. I have a spice blend that’s my base, salt-free seasoning. I make a nice homemade curry powder when I have a mind to but the prize people like to be honored with is my lemon pepper mix. It’s made with lots of lemon zest and citric acid powder along with a good white pepper for bite, not black. I do small batches, it’s fragrant and strong. Also salt-free. I only give it to cooks. It’s kickass.
@Violet: And peri-peri is originally a Portuguese dish, which IIRC came to South Africa via Mozambique.
J R in WV
Welll, this is probably a dead thread, but that never stopped me before!
I have a big white marble mortar and pestle, which I like to use as often as I can. So I grind various spices, sometimes even with herbs.
One I like is coriander, allspice, cloves, fennel hmmm, usually there are a couple more, cummin, but just a dab, I don’t like too much, and cinnamon, usually just preground I add at the end. Sometimes I throw in some Szechuan peppercorns, too, depending on what I’m going to make.
I use this as a dry rub on meats, and in stews and soups.
Last night I fried oysters for me, and trout for Mrs J, and st eamed a huge pile of broccoli. It was good. I used a little of the ground spice above in the cornmeal for the seafood. Then tabasco and lemon juice on the oysters before popping them in my mouth – I ate a whole pint jar!
@ruemara: You should think about selling that at the markets where you sell your baked goods. Or you could even sell it here on BJ!