Archive for the ‘Shallots’ Category

* Kerabu Green Mango

Posted on March 20th, 2011 by Linda. Filed under Appetizer, Belachan, Dried Shrimp, Malaysian, Mango, Nyonya, Salads, Shallots.

Here is another mango salad recipe.  A Malaysian Nyonya version.  The key flavoring here is belachan.  Now, the following paragraph may scare you away from this recipe, but do trust me, once the belachan is roasted and mixed into the sambal, the salad is just absolutely scrumptious!  Ask any Malaysian, and they will surely defend the belachan.

Belachan is to Malaysian cooking what fish sauce is to Thai cooking.  To get the full, sweet flavor of belachan, buy a block of it, slice it up and dry toast it in a skillet.  Just be aware that your neighbors may not be liking it too much!  When I lived in Guangzhou about 20 years ago, I toasted some belachan and thought I was smart to leave the windows opened….after all, I was in US consulate housing and I don’t think my neighbors really dig the smell!  Before I knew it, every fly in Guangzhou decided to join me in the cooking!  After a humourous battle tracking down the flies and shooing them away, I was able to get all but one fly out of the apt.  To get the last fly out, I placed my bottle of now sweetly toasted belachan by the window sill.  The lone fly decided to come out of hiding and follow the waft of the belachan by the window sill.  At that point, I turned on the fan, and off he went out of the window!

Chef’s tip: You can also roast the belachan in an oven.  400F.  Chop up the belachan, spread it on a baking sheet and roast about 7 minutes.  Using a wooden spoon, break up the pieces further till crumbs form.  Return to oven for another 5 minutes.  Store leftover roasted belachan in an airtight bottle for future use!

Sambal Belachan:
6 Fresno/ red jalapeno chilies
1 Tablespoon belachan, more if desired

2 Tablespoon prepared sambal belachan
3 Tablespoon lime juice
2 Tablespoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

2 Tablespoon dried shrimp, soaked
2 Tablespoon dessicated shredded coconut, toasted
2 green mangoes, peeled and shredded
2 shallots, finely sliced
4 kaffir lime leaves, finely chiffonaded

  1. In a food processor, finely grind the red chilies into a paste. Mix with belachan.
  2. Make kerabu dressing – mix together sambal belachan, lime juice, sugar and salt.  Set aside.
  3. Soak dried shrimp in water until soft.  Drain and pound coarsely with a mortar and pestle or pulse with a food processor.  Set aside.
  4. Toast desiccated coconut in a pan till golden brown.  Pound coconut lightly.  Set aside.
  5. Shred mangoes, cut shallots into thin slices lengthwise.  Slice kaffir lime leaves finely.
  6. In a large bowl, mix all ingredients with the dressing. Serve immediately.

Note: Mangoes must be green, unriped firm mangoes

Serves: 6

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* Chicken Curry

Posted on February 15th, 2009 by Linda. Filed under Belachan, Chicken, Chili Peppers, Coconut, Cuisine, Curry, Curry leaves, Entree, Lemongrass, Peppers, Shallots, Tumeric.

This is a classic chicken curry, Chinese Malaysian-style.  It goes really well with tumeric sticky rice.

Chef’s tip: Curry powder is commonly used in Malaysia, the concoction is similar to Sri Lankan curry powder.  Here’s a recipe to make your own curry powder.

6 pieces chicken legs with thighs, bones and skin on
2 tablespoons curry powder

3 small Russet potatoes, peeled, cut into 2-inch wedges
2 cups canola oil

Spice paste:
5 red jalapeno chilies, seeded
8 shallots
3 stalks lemon grass
1 inch galangal
1 inch fresh turmeric / 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
1 tablespoon roasted belacan
5 candlenuts

¼ cup canola oil
5 sprigs curry leaves
1 cup water
3 cups coconut milk, reserve 1 cup of the cream
2 tablespoons kosher salt, to taste

Marinating the chicken:
1.    Rub the curry powder over the chicken
Preparing the potatoes
2.    Peel the potatoes and cut each into 4 pieces. Pat dry.
3.    Heat a skillet with about 2-inch of oil.  Fry the potatoes till it is golden on the outside.  Remove and set aside.  The potatoes need not be cooked through.
Preparing the spice paste
4.    Roughly chop up all the spice paste ingredients (except lemongrass and galangal that needs to be finely chopped).
5.    Place all spice paste ingredients in a food processor and grind into a fine paste.
Cooking the curry
6.    Heat about ¼ cup of oil in a pot on medium high.  Add the spice paste and curry leaves fry till fragrant and red, about 5 minutes.
7.    Add the marinated chicken and fry for about 3 minutes.
8.    Add 1 cup water and 2 cups of coconut milk and salt.  Simmer for about 10 minutes
9.    Add the fried potatoes and reserved 1 cup coconut milk, and simmer uncovered until chicken is tender and gravy has thicken, about 30 minutes-45 minutes.  Let sit for 15 minutes before serving.

Serves: 6

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* Roasted Cauliflower

Posted on November 26th, 2008 by Linda. Filed under Appetizer, Cauliflower, Course, Curry, Entree, Indian, Parsley, Shallots, Vegetarian.

This is an adaptation of Ubuntu’s Cauliflower in a Cast Iron Pot.  It’s a little less creamy, and  a little easier to accomplish and more accessible without the vadouvan while still accomplishing the creamy sweetness of the cauliflower.

Chef’s tip: Making brown butter is a two step process. First, melt the butter to separate the solids and moisture.  Then bring it to brown to a rosy hazelnut color.

1 head cauliflower
2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon kosher salt
3 Tablespoons unsalted butter
1 large shallot, diced finely
1 Tablespoon Madras curry powder
1 cup 2% milk
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 cup flat leaf parsley, chopped
2 8-oz ramekins

1. Trim cauliflower, and slice the cauliflower into 1/4 inch thick slabs.  Break them up with your hands into bite size.
2. Preheat oven 400F.  Toss 3/4 of the cauliflower with olive oil and salt.  Roast in the oven till brown bits form.  About 40 minutes.
3. In a small saucepot, melt the butter, removing the foam.  When butter begins to brown, add shallots and saute till golden brown.  Add curry powder, bring it to a sizzle and remove from heat.  Pour the butter mixture into a small bowl.
4. Using the same saucepot, add in the remainder 1/4 head of chopped cauliflower and the milk, and bring to a simmer, 15 minutes till the cauliflower is soft.  Using a handheld blender, puree the mixture.
5. When the cauliflower is roasted, toss with the spiced butter and the chopped parsley.
6. In a ramekin, rub on some of the spiced butter.  Layer in puree, roasted cauliflower, puree and top with roasted cauliflower.  Pop back into the oven to brown the top, about 5 minutes.
6. Serve with a hearty, robust bread.

Serves: 2

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