Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Fried Sesame Balls/Jin Dui

Finished fried sesame balls with red bean paste
Deep fried, chewy, and sweet...who doesn't love that combination! Fried sesame number one favorite. As a child, my mom would make these stuffed with mung beans (I don't like mung beans) and I would always throw away the stuffing. I love how it's chewy and has a thin crust on the outside. This is a little greasy, especially when you save it for later, but it's delicious! I love mines stuffed with red bean paste. Red bean paste is a little bit sweet, but goes great with the rice dough. The dough is made up of glutinous rice flour, rice flour, and tapioca flour. Very simple and easy to make. I can snack on these all day. I never knew what these were called, but found out that they are a chinese snack called Jin Dui. Living in Hawaii, I found them at a Zippy's/Napolean Bakery restaurant and was so excited to know that I don't always have to make them myself when I'm craving for them. Thank you Hawaii!!

I am currently coming up with different fillings so I will post up the main recipe along with the fillings once I'm done.
Before they were deep fried....filled with red bean paste

Pancakes with Preserved Duck Eggs

Breakfast is an essential meal to start they day off. For me, I'd rather have breakfast all day every day. I love breakfast. My favorites of breakfast meals have to be cereal, pancakes, waffles, eggs, bacon, and french toast. I don't really care for oatmeal, fruits, or coffee much. I want a hearty breakfast and I usually eat my pancakes and waffles with a little syrup. Not into so much sweets. This is my take on East meets West for breakfast. I decided to make pancakes with preserved duck eggs. Something a little sweet with something a little savory that will be both be fulfilling.

In China, preserved duck eggs or 1,000 year old eggs/century eggs are very popular as a snack or eaten with porridge for breakfast. I've always heard of preserved duck eggs and always seen them in boxes at the asian markets, but never wanted to actually spend the money to buy them (incase if they didn't taste good). A few years ago, our nice neighbor gave us our first preserved ducks eggs (our neighbors were chinese). He told us to dip it in a little vinegar and eat it just like that. We did it and it was actually pretty good. The smell was horrible, of course, and looking at it didn't make things better. BUT...I am a big foodie and I'm willing to try something different and so I did. TASTES LIKE EGGS! the creamy, black egg yolk texture that 1,000 year old eggs have.

The outside part that would've been the egg whites where a bit tougher than normal boiled eggs and the yolk was a lot softer and creamier. However, if you close your eyes and don't breath it in, the taste is just like boiled eggs. My husband actually liked it a lot so we started buying them. The good thing about these eggs is that it's so easy to peel. I've added this to rice porridge, noodle soups, and stir fry. I'm not a big fan of porridge in the morning (I prefer porridge in mid day so I can have the patience for it to cook) so I decided to add it to pancakes. I ate it without syrup and it was just like eating pancakes with a side of scrambled eggs (it definitely smelled like it). My husband now preferes eating preserved duck eggs with pancakes and I do too.
Yes, it looks disgusting. It looks moldy and rotten and smells horrible. From this view, you're probably feeling sick to your stomach. Looks are decieving!! For those of you who have tried it before....GOOD FOR YOU!! For those of you who likes them...GOOD FOR YOU!! This is a must try...and if you don't like it then at least you can say you've tried it. The yolk actually tastes like scrambled eggs, but it has a creamy custard-like texture. That's my favorite part. I don't really like boiled eggs and if I have to eat it, I'll only eat the yolk part so, of course, I prefer the yolk part for preserved duck eggs too.

 Pancakes with Preserved Duck

1 cup all-purpose flour
2 Tbsp sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup whole milk
2 Tbsp butter, melted
1 egg
1 Tbsp oil
3 Preserved Duck Eggs

Mix the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt with the milk and melted butter. Use a wire whisk and whisk the batter until little lumps are left. Then add the egg and oil. Mix with the wire whisk until there are barely any lumps.

Meanwhile, peel the preserved duck eggs. The shells should come off very easily. Then sliced them lengthwise. You can slice them very thin (if you can) or thick (if you really like them). Heat up the skillet and ladle a spoonful of the pancake batter onto the skillet. Add a few slices of preserved eggs. Flip the pancake with the bubbles form on the top. Serve while it's still hot.

Pancake with preserved duck eggs before flipping

Finished pancake with preserved duck eggs

I decided to make faces just for fun.

This one looks like Po from Kungfu Panda!

The Dragon Warrior!! haha
I ran out of preserved duck eggs and still had pancake batter left so I added some semi-chocolate chips and shredded coconut.
Preserved duck egg pancakes and chocolate chip coconut pancakes

Everything in this picture was delicious!
**If you're not a big fan of preserved eggs then diced them up and mix them in the batter. You can also lay a few slices of the preserved egg on the skillet to get a nice crust around the edges and then ladle a spoonful of pancake batter over the eggs. I find that forming a crust around the egg on the skillet makes them taste and smell like scrambled eggs.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Chow Fun Stir Fry

Stir fry is the easiest dish to make. It's basically chopped up vegetables and meat with a sauce. Add noodles and it's a one pot wonder. I love stir fry noodles on a lazy day where I don't want to cook something big or spend too much time in the kitchen. Everyone who knows me knows that I love noodles. Today I made chow fun stir fry. It's basically stir fry with chow fun noodles. Chow fun noodles are basically rice noodles, but wider and a little bit thicker than regular rice noodles. Because of it's wideness and thickness, it's also a bit chewier than the regular rice noodles. However, chow fun is a noodle that everyone should at least try. It's sold in many asian markets. It comes dried or fresh.

Chow Fun Stir Fry
1 pkg fresh chow fun noodles (1 package contains 2 bags of fresh chow fun noodles)
1 cup chopped pork (amount is really up to you)
1 onion, sliced lengthwise
1 red bell pepper, de-seeded and cut in strips
2-3 stalks green onions, chopped
2 handfuls of mushrooms (amount is really up to you)
3 Tbsp dark sweet soy sauce
2 Tbsp hoisin sauce (if you really like hoisin sauce, add 3 Tbsp)
pinch of salt
1 garlic clove, minced
2 Tbsp oil
1/2 - 1 cup water

**Can't find fresh chow fun? Use the dry ones but soak them ahead of time in hot water, drain, and then cook.**

 Heat up a wok or pan to medium heat and add the oil, garlic, and pork. Add a pinch of salt and cook. Cook the pork until it's fully cooked and add in the onions and mushrooms. Cook the onions and mushroom for about 3 minutes and then add in the rell bell peppers. Stir constantly if using a hot wok to prevent burning. Add the sweet soy sauce and hoisin sauce. Add in the chow fun noodles and 1/2 cup of water. Stir as much as you can to mix all the sauces with the noodles. If you like it more saucy then add the other 1/2 cup. Continue to stir until all the noodles are covered in the sauces. Add more salt to taste. Turn off the heat and add the green onions. Serve.

Cooking with a wok is really hard work. The wok heats up evenly and gets really hot quickly. The key is to constantly keep stirring to prevent burning. My arms were so sore after making this dish, but it was all worth it. I was short so I was on my tippy toes too.

This is a really simple dish. You don't even have to add meat. Substitute pork for chicken, beef, or just eggs. Add more vegetables if you like. Try with zucchini and eggplant. I added sriracha to my bowl and it was delish!
This is such a beautiful looking dish! This would be a great dish for Christmas because it has the Christmas color themes. Last year, instead of going with the traditional Christmas dishes, I went with dishes that has the Christmas colors; red and green. I think this dish will be on the Christmas menu this year.

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