Fried Tofu with Teriyaki Sauce

For this dish it is suggested that you have some cooked rice to pair it with. For this you will need the following ingredients.
Serves 5-7 with rice

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Flour for dusting and Oil for frying
A block of Extra Firm Tofu (16 oz)
1/4 C Dark Brown Sugar
1/4 C Soy Sauce
1/4 C Rice Wine Vinegar
Shredded sushi seaweed for garnish

Pour your oil in the narrowest pot you have as to save on the amount of oil needed put it on medium heat. It will take a couple moments to get to frying temperature. Next put a cup of flour in a wide bowl, and set aside. Press your tofu lightly with a paper towel so it will remove as much of the moisture as possible before cutting in to cubes at an inch squared. After cutting, check the oil by pinching a small amount of flour in to the oil if you get a fair reaction that looks just like a soup on a low simmer then you can begin. Dredge them in the flower in batches before dropping them in to the oil you don’t want to do it all at once because that will drop the temperature of the oil and for most stove top burners you will not be able to hold temp without splitting them in to at least two batches. I did mine in four batches total, but I wasn’t in a hurry. Let them fry until golden brown or a light manilla color for those who know their around an office better.

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The bubbles don’t have to be big you just want to make sure that when they come out they can drain. rinse and repeat with all batches until all the tofu is drying off. For the teriyaki sauce take a small pot and put your sugar, vinegar and soy in it before bringing it up to a simmer making sure to stir until the sugar has been dissolved and let simmer for a couple minutes until all the flavors meld together or about three or four minutes.

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I got a little impatient and cranked up to high which you can do if you want to watch it for a minute or two. You do not want the sugar to burn or else you will need to try again. After your tofu has dried appropriately you can use your sauce to dip into or pour over depending on how you like your sauces to be done. Some people are picky, no judging here.

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I got my tofu placed on cooked white rice and seaweed around it and from here I just poured the sauce over the top and dug in. The picture didn’t come so clear as I had hoped but its tofu blocks on rice. So I hope you enjoy this recipe and if you liked what you saw give some of my other dishes a chance their in the cooking category on my blog.

Have a good day everyone, oh and before I forget starting in December their will hopefully be more posts I am getting a little bit more comfortable doing this as well as the youtube videos if you watch those link is to the side. I am going to try to up my game to do two a week I feel like it can be done. Wish me luck.

Fried Rice –

Hey everyone, time for another simple recipe this time to use up any rice you may have this works best after the rice has cooled. You will need the following.

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3 large eggs
1/4 C chopped green onions
2 qt of long grain white rice

Of course you want to have your seasonings of choice on hand. In a non stick pan on medium high heat start by cracking your eggs in to the pan until they begin to get opaque. Next is to toss your rice mixing the two together until the eggs are almost completely cooked. Picture below for example. Make sure to keep your rice moving as to not get over cooked in places this dish from start to finish takes less then five minutes if the rice is already cooked.

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Last is to add your green onion as well as any seasonings you prefer, making sure to mix everything up with your spat of choice.From there just plate up Mine in the pic has a little bit of chili powder for color and a touch of heat. Shredded seaweed works well, and of course you can always just grab a spoon and dig in.

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If you do not want to use or do not have a non stick pan then just a drop of oil is needed before putting the eggs in. From there just go for it.

Next, two recipes on this blog will be a tofu dish fried and with sauce over rice once again. Rice was on sale so I got a big bag to last me for a while. The other recipe will be a dish I actually took as a challenge / idea from someone on twitter. Breakfast cupcakes. Me being a stickler for things got to be a problem there, but over all the dish tasted good and was actually very good for breakfast. If you

Chili tofu

Now with this you can put it over rice or noodles. I still wasn’t sick of ramen so I used dry pack ramen noodles. The chili tofu is hot though so if you can’t stand the heat find a substitute. Cooked vegetables work well or even just a touch of soy after the tofu is browned in pan. For the chili tofu you will need the following.

Tofu

A 16 oz package of tofu – Extra firm – tofu normally they come in 16 oz portions so no worries about over shooting and if you don’t want to make a full batch just replace the water in the tofu container before putting your remainder portion and that should give you about a week of time to play with it.

2 t of vegetable oil to help lubricate a wide shallow pan for the tofu

2 T chopped garlic

1/4 C sweet chili sauce or (1/8 C water, 1/8 C sugar, 3 T red chili flake)

1/4 C ketchup or (1/2 C tomato paste, 1/2 C white wine vinegar, and reduce to half)

Your seasonings of choice in my case.

Set your pan up and place on medium high heat. Oiled and ready we then move to the tofu and for this you will need a plate and a couple extra paper towels to make it easier on yourself. Open the package and drain it before setting it on the plate and pressing the paper towels lightly in to it. What this does is help remove some of the excess water so it will be easier for you to saute without breaking in to chunks.

What if it breaks in to chunks anyway? Use less sauce smaller pieces will not need so much to represent the same heat level. Other then that no changes so go for it. Next take your knife of choice and chop it up first in to planks before going in to cubes.

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Behold cut tofu. Now after chopping your tofu up toss it in the pan.

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You should get some sizzle as you drop it in so after that if you have to fuss with it you can set up your sauce to be poured in later. It will take some time to get a nice even browning or you can be like me.

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After about ten minutes let it flip and toss in your garlic. If you want it to be more browned what you do not want to do is try to scrape it from the bottom of the pan within the first few minute you will have more of a chance of the tofu cubes breaking if that happens. After the garlic gets some browning time you want to add your sauce.

What if I let the garlic cook to long or everything seems dry in the pan?

Great question, now with tofu because it is so porous their will always be some absorption and the garlic will help with that so if you need a little more liquid  as soon as your going dry you can add a couple drops of oil to finish your browning. Or if you say my ingredients I also had a lemon and an orange. They were on sale and I don’t get a lot of fruit so you can add the juice of a couple citrus.

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I like mine a little hotter then normal so this is with an extra teaspoon of chili powder with the citrus juice to produce that red color. As soon as you finish this if you let things cook until they stick the pan still the juice will help bring those particles back up to add some flavor to your sauce. Add your mix of sweet chili sauce and ketchup to the pan and let it reduce a little making sure to get all the flavors together to properly introduce each other.

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Ketchup has been used in dishes like this for many years, and old fans of Iron chef will remember the Chen ken min had a delicious prawns in chili sauce recipe that worked with ketchup as a base. If you don’t feel comfortable though you can pull back on it or make a quick version from the ratio I put up.

So after your sauce is ready its thick, full bodied, and delicious you need to have something to serve it with. For things like this I gotta go with the incredible edible egg. High in protein and adds just the right match to spicier things over rice or noodles in my opinion.

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Lightly fried egg and spicy tofu over noodles. Enjoy, if you like anything I have been up to comment and if you know someone that could enjoy one of these please show them the way to my little corner of the internet.Oh and before I forget you can actually catch me at the twitter thing call me old fashioned if you like but I am at oneguyportland on the twittery thing. Have a good one everybody.

Pork with Blackberry Cream

This dish pairs well with the apple onion salad from last week.

Here is what you need for this dish for a pair of servings. 4 thinly cut 3-4 oz pork chops, a cup of cream, 12 blackberries, an orange as well as a pair of rosemary sprigs. Garlic always matches with pork and S/p for seasoning is always good to get all the flavors to meet up on amiable terms.

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Begin cooking your pork on medium heat. After they are just cooked let them rest for a moment. Seeing my pan after the salad and pork their is a lot of bits stuck to the bottom. Using a high acid liquid like a citrus juice or vinegar we can use those bits to flavor our sauce in a technique called deglazing.

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After juicing your orange on medium heat let it simmer and mash your blackberries and rosemary making sure to scrape up the bits stuck to the bottom of the pan before continuing. Those bits are flavor particles ready to add to the arsenal of the sauce. When the juice is half reduced strain it before adding your cream.

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Let the strained juice and cream mix before reducing until the cream is half gone. As soon as it is thick enough that it holds to the back of the spoon for just a second before dripping completely off. Now this was actually made for a co worker who was leaving. She wanted a meal cooked by me on her last day. This paired up with the apple onion salad for a box lunch like 101_0804

This. The small containers are the blackberry sauce and the mustard dressing.

The pork was so thin I did not get the color I wanted on the outside, but it was still juicy without being pink. The sauce was a great compliment that was much more graceful then I originally thought it would. All in all it was a good thin and if you try it let me know if you do any of your own twists on it.

One thing I did not like was the color everything was kinda beige without the blackberry cream. After this I garnished with a couple pinches of fresh chopped rosemary before heading to work.

Chicken a la kiev

Chicken a la kiev is a dish I found a recipe to in the old cookbook. We will do some slight changes here is what you will need.
Chicken breasts (skinless and boneless)
Egg for breading
Breadcrumbs for breading
Seasoning for the breadcrumbs
I use a combination of parmesan cheese and old bay to season my breading

Compound butter –
A compound butter is a butter mixed with other things to add more flavor and has been used in kitchens as a form of sauce. In this recipe my compound butter was made with an addition of crushed garlic, green onion, and honey mustard with a splash of lemon juice.

After mixing it all together you want to put your butter in the freezer. If you like everything a certain shape you can fill up an ice tray half full so you get little squares of butter already setting up.

Butterfly your chicken and after the butter has frozen stuff in the middle of the chicken before breading it up and dumping it in a frypot already heated up. Let it cool and dress as you see fit. If you do not feel comfortable putting frozen butter in raw chicken then you can put the butter on top before plating. The butter will melt to form a sauce to match the chicken.

After plating garnish with what you want. I use a small little piece of muenster cheese to work with the small amount of butter.

Stuffed Chicken with cheddar and mustard sauce

So with this recipe your going to need the following for one plate

2 4oz portions of boned and skinned dark meat chicken, 2 oz cheddar, 3 slices of bacon, olive oil for pan frying. For the sauce add a tablespoon and a half of dijon mustard, a tsp of honey, and a quarter cup of heavy cream.

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So start out with your pan on medium heat and begin to cook your chicken after both sides have been flipped and cooked through. Stuff them with cheddar and let it sit for a moment while the bacon cooks. Drain the pan of your fry oil before dropping your bacon in to the pan. Cook your bacon through while making sure that it does not turn to glass. This will be the layer between your sauce and the chicken.

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While this recipe is very rich the sauce should have a very refreshing bite. Either from the horse radish and acidity in the mustard or from additional seasoning. Other ways you can roll it is using addition of chives or cayenne pepper for additional color. The light heat of the seasoning or the fresh aroma of the chopped chives adds anew dimension to this. When you make the sauce all you have to do is put it all in a clean pan let it simmer after whisking together until the volume decreases by a third to a half.

Layer your bacon on top of your chicken and pour the sauce on top of the bacon gently then enjoy. So hope you enjoy and hopefully after eating this you get one step closer.

 

 

 

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