Laksa in a Chinese Export bowl (c1780)
Popular popular. This Malaysian soup goes down very easily.
You’ll need to source some laksa paste for this recipe or you can try to patch together a mix of it yourself which is no small endeavor.
1 knob of butter
1 cup laksa paste
2 tablespoons of veggie oil
3 cups of chicken stock
3 tablespoons of fish sauce
2 cans of coconut milk (not sweet of course)
1 lb of diced butternut squash
1 lb of boneless chicken thighs
2 cups of chard sliced into thin ribbons (or you could throw in some kale instead of broccolini)
about 1lb of silken tofu .. give or take .. ie 1 package
1 bunch of sliced scallions
1 cup of fresh cilantro
Heat the butter til it is bubbling in a large pot, and then saute the chicken in it until it is cooked through. Set aside the chicken to cool.
Using the same pot, add the veggie oil and stir in the laksa paste and cook it for about 1 - 1/2 minutes releasing all the flavors. Now add the chicken stock, the coconut milk and the fish sauce and bring to a burbling boil.
Next up, throw in the butternut squash and continue to gently boil the soup until the squash is cooked through .. about 8 - 10 minutes given how small the diced pieces are.
Meanwhile, slice the chicken thighs that you’ve set aside into bite-size pieces. You’re going to add them in a moment to the soup.
Add the green veggies, the sliced chard or kale and continue to cook for another minute.
Then add the chicken to the pot and cook through for another minute.
Lastly, add the tofu, green onions and cilantro to the soup, gently stir for a minute and then remove from the heat.
Split the soup into bowls and you can top with a piece or two of cilantro for flourish.
Serves 6 - 8.
Buy three - four tart pans at the same time and then you’re sorted when you have your next dinner party. Very quick and easy to make all at the same time and they are tasty as leftovers.
Atholl Brose is an old (very old, late 1400’s old) Scottish drinkie. The ingredients sound a little odd at first blush, but together they’re tasty. And quite perfect for a February day.
Soak fine oatmeal (physically fine, like steelcut oats, not instant) in water for at least an hour. (I’ve soaked overnight in the past and that works well too).
1 part oatmeal covered by 3 parts water.
Strain the oatmeal-y water with a fine sieve, pushing down on the oatmeal so you’re sure to get all of the yummy goodness out.
Now for serving yourself a cocktail:
2 parts oatmeal-y water
1 part whisk(e)y
and a healthy dollop of honey (heather honey if you have it). People are so particular about how sweet or not sweet their drink is that it’s best for you to sweeten to your own tastes, not mine.
Stir making sure the honey dissolves. Serve over ice. Traditionally this drink was served with some whipped cream on top but I skip that step.
I came up with this recipe a few weeks ago when I went over to Katherine and Barlow’s home up on Mt. Tamalpais in Marin County. The deal was I’d bring dinner, they’d host. Their home is in the midst of the redwoods .. so much in the midst there is actually a redwood tree coming up out of their deck. Cozy. That and all the sheepskin rugs on the deck add to the decadent air.
We set up dinner as a buffet, and of the variety of dishes I brought over, this was certainly the most popular.
Turn on oven to 425F. You’ll want to pop the chicken in the oven to roast while you get the rest of the recipe ready. See below. I like roasting the chicken rather than cooking it on the stove top because I think the resulting taste is much deeper and more rich.
1 medium sized healthy, no-hormone chicken
1 tin of unsweetened coconut milk
1 onion chopped up
dash of olive oil
3 garlic cloves chopped
2 heads of corn off their cob. (Or you could use one small package of frozen corn if in a bind).
Juice of 2 limes
4 cups of chicken broth
1 little red chilles chopped finely
1 bunch of scallions chopped
2 tomatoes chopped
2 avocados peeled and chopped
Roast the chickie for about 45 minutes .. you know, til it’s fully cooked and the juices run clear. Once done, set it aside and let it cool.
While waiting for the chicken to roast, get the salsa topping ready and gently mix them all together. (If you’re serving the soup much later, hold off on the avocado til you’re ready to serve so it doesn’t get brown).
Then saute the onion in a soup pot with a splash of olive oil. Once the onions are glassy, add the garlic and corn. Cook for another minute. Add the chicken, lime juice, coconut milk, and chicken broth. Let gently cook for about 15 minutes. Test and add salt and pepper as deemed necessary.
Serve the soup in bowls and add the salsa on top.
Test tubes of Drambuie to be added to Scotch .. Rusty Nail. Yum yum.
Fiddling around with the recipe, but here we have the current rendition of the Chocolate Babka Cream Cheese Pudding.
Sizzled shallots, wild mushrooms and some fresh herbs from the garden in a cognac reduction poured over a fat t-bone steak. Yummy and full of so much flavor.
Ratatouille is such a great fall-back recipe. You can chow on it on its own or you can throw it on rice or enjoy with pasta. It’s vegan and veggie friendly. Below is the original recipe I posted a while back but this version has some yolky eggs on top making it much richer and a whole lot less vegan.
My mother used to make this for me growing up often. It’s great for the vegetarian in the house, yummy on pasta, and freezes really well. My recipe varies each time just depending on what veggies I have or what looks good when I’m out shopping. Peppers and I are just at the early stages of our friendship; in earlier years I would eliminate peppers from the recipe.
This feeds about 12.
4 cloves of garlic chopped
2 onions sliced (red or white) (I also used spring onions in this rendition because they looked tasty).
3 peppers sliced
6 squash .. can do a mix or green and yellow. Or not.
1 28oz can of diced tomatoes. You could use fresh peeled tomatoes too if you were enthusiastic, or, perhaps, had an excess of them in your garden. Yum!
2 eggplants chopped into cubes
a bunch of Italian parsley chopped
Salt and pepper
Herbs de Provence
My mom was always quite strict with the actually cooking of the veggies. Her firm instructions were to NOT turn on the heat until all the veggies had been added to the pot.
Cover the bottom of the pot with olive oil. Add the onions and garlic first. Then add the remaining of the veggies (any order is just fine). Cover with the parsley, salt and pepper and Herbs de Provence. Heat to a low simmer and cook for about 45 mins with a top on the pot .. but with a little room for some steam to come out.
Turn the oven on to 350F and let it heat up. Then once the veggies are cooked on top of the oven, put them into an oven-proof dish. Crack a couple of eggs on top of the ratatouille (I tend to make a little nest as the egg whites will run). Bake the ratatouille and eggs for about 15 minutes til the egg white just sets.
Very forgiving dish. If it gets too dry, you can add a little white vino or water. If it seems too sloppy, just heat a bit more.