Thought you ought to know...

>> Saturday 14 November 2009

What's the difference between juice and drink? How much does 1 cup of raw rice yield when cooked? Do you know the difference between evaporated milk and pasteurized whole milk?

Here's a challenge, write your answers and then read the column and see how on or off the mark you are. This week's column also explains how appetite is different from hunger, servings from portions and much more. You definitely don't want to miss out on this week's column.

Now on to today's recipes!

Just in case you don't already know... My gal pal, Jaden, of Steamy Kitchen has her first book out! It hit book stores in the US on October 19. I received my copy last Thursday, and cooked my first dish from it recently. It's a beautifully photographed and laid out book. If you'd like an introduction to some of the flavours of Asia, get the book. One of the things that's refreshing about the Steamy Kitchen Cookbook is that it lives up to its promise - of putting dinner on the table quickly, with a little know-how I must add. If you're not familiar with the ingredients and you're new to cooking, don't worry, Jaden is thorough in her method and offers valuable tips to guide you along.

Jaden, my dear friend, hearty congratulations again and thanks for the generous sharing of your time and advice, personally to me and now with the world in your book.

The recipe in the book says Chinese Beef Broccoli but I opted to leave out the Broccoli and just make the Beef Stir-Fry.

Chinese Beef Stir-Fry
(Printed with the author's permission)


1 lb top sirloin or flank steak, thinly sliced into strips (I used top sirloin)
1 tablespoon canola oil
1 tablespoon minced garlic

Beef Marinade
1+1/2 tsp soy sauce
1 tsp cornstarch
1/2 tsp canola oil
Freshly ground black pepper to taste

Stir-fry Sauce
3 tbsp oyster sauce
2 tsp Chinese rice wine (or dry sherry)
2 tsp Chinese black vinegar (or balsamic vinegar) I used balsamic


  1. Combine the ingredients for the marinade in a bowl. Add the beef and let marinate for 10 minutes at room temperature
  2. Mix together the ingredients for the stir-fry sauce in a separate bowl
  3. Heat pan until very hot, add oil and swirl to coat
  4. Add garlic and fry for 15 - 30 seconds
  5. Add steak strips keep them in one layer and fry for 30 secs. Flip the strips and continue to fry
  6. Pour in the stir-fry sauce and stir to combine. Simmer until sauce is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon
  7. Garnish with green onions. Spoon over hot rice and serve (that's what I did)

This past week I made 2 chutneys. The recipes had been bookmarked for a while now. I don't know what took me so long. The flavours are amazing and they are definitely going to be making regular appearances on my plate. When, note I am not saying if, you make these, do not leave out the tamarind and try my twist on fire-roasting the coconut before grating it. Or, if you don't have a gas stove, grate the coconut and toast in a dry pan. It will not be exactly the same but it will add another layer of flavour. Annita & Lissie, thanks so much for your continued outstanding work in the kitchen.

I adapted both recipes and am posting them as such. In both cases, I fire-roasted my coconut before grating it to give that wonderful smokey flavour. Anita's original Coriander Chutney recipe is here and Lissie's original Prawn Chutney can be found here.

Coriander Chutney


1+1/2 cup chopped coriander/cilantro
1 cup freshly grated, fire-roasted coconut
4 green chilies
3 cloves garlic
1 sprig curry leaves
2 teaspoons tamarind pulp
1 teaspoon mustard seeds
1 fresh red chili
1/4 cup minced red onion
Salt to taste
4 tablespoons oil, divided


  1. Add the coriander, cilantro, coconut, green chilies, garlic, 2 tablespoons oil and tamarind pulp to a food processor and pulse until the mixture becomes a paste (or grind with whatever equipment you have, to a paste). Transfer mixture to a bowl
  2. Heat the remaining oil in a pan
  3. Add mustard seeds and let it pop, add onions, red chili and curry leaves and fry until onions start to brown. Remove from heat and pour over chutney-paste. Stir to mix well and serve

Smoked Fish Chutney
N.B. Lissie's recipe calls for dried prawns, I used smoked snapper instead


1 cup flaked smoked fish
2 cups freshly grated fire-roasted coconut
7 fresh red chilies
1 tablespoon minced ginger
1/3 cup minced red onion
3 teaspoons tamarind pulp
2 tablespoons oil
1 tablespoon water


  1. Heat oil in pan and gently fry ginger, chilies and onion. Cook until light brown
  2. Add all the ingredients (including the fried onion-ginger-chilies) to a food processor and pulse/grind to a paste
  3. Take out the mixture, gather it into a ball, place into a bowl and serve

And before I go, I just wanted to share with you, the view I take in as I read my newspapers on a Sunday morning. I am so blessed!

This just in! The Blogger Aid Cookbook is now available. Get your copy here! Support a worthy cause - help feed the children of the world. Makes for an EXCELLENT Christmas gift!

The BloggerAid Cookbook

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