Sunday, February 6, 2011

A New Twist to Baby Back Ribs: Sweet Soy Pork Spare Ribs

Hi All

This is how you eat Pork Spare Ribs asian style. We call this "Babi Kecap"; the literal translation is Sweet Soy Sauce Pork Ribs. This recipe has been handed down from my Grandmother to my Mom then now to me. This dish was my Grandfather's favorite. I was told that my Granpa never wanted to eat the same thing at each meal, so my Granma (or Oma that's what I called her) always had to cook three different meals each day everyday. However this is the only dish that my Grandpa wouldn't mind eating consecutively. I never met my Granpa as he died a week before I was born, but at least I have this dish as my link to him.

Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 30 minutes
Serving Size: 4 people
Price: $9.30

- 2 lbs of Pork Spare Ribs (we got 2.08lbs at $3.99/lb) - $8.30
- 2 whole garlic (50 cents) - 1 whole garlic to each lb of meat.
- 3 Potatoes (50 cents)
- 7 tablespoons of "ABC" Medium Sweet Soy Sauce - I bought this at Asian supermarket (99 Ranch)
- 3 tablespoons of "Lee Kum Kee" Oyster Flavored Sauce
- 2 teaspoons of black pepper
- 2 cups of water

Chili Sauce: (optional if you like spicy)
- 4 Red chili pepper (from garden)
- 2 tablespoons of "ABC" Medium Sweet Soy Sauce

Directions of Cooking:
1.  Cut the ribs into small pieces, cut the piece in between the bones. The width of the pork ribs is about 1 inch long. If you want it to be leaner, cut out all the fatty parts.

2. Cut the two whole garlics into fine pieces and saute it in a wok with a little olive oil until it is a little brown and you can smell the flavor.
3. Add the pork rib pieces into the wok and fold the garlic into the ribs to flavor it. You don't have to add more oil since the pork ribs will produce its own oil. Have the stove on HIGH heat.
4. Cook the ribs until it's about medium well done. You can tell as the rib meat will turn white. We will stew it again later. This takes about 5-10 minutes
5. Add all the sauces in: 7 tablespoons of medium sweet soy sauce, 3 tablespoons of oyster sauce, 2 teaspoons of black pepper sauce and saute them together on HIGH heat for about 5 minutes. Remember to taste as you are adding the sauces in.
 6. Add two cups of water, wait until the soup is boiling. Then cover the wok with a lid and stew it. Change the heat setting from HIGH to LOW and stew for about 20 minutes until the meat is tender. My co-worker said once that the meat practically falls off the bone.
 7. While the meat is stewing, skin your potatoes and cut them into 1 inch cubes.
 8. Take out another pan, and use a fresh vegetable oil to fry your potatoes. My mom told me that it has to be fresh oil, so that your fried potatoes will turn golden brown.
 9.  Once your potatoes and ribs are done.... then it's time to eat!!! VOILA!

Being an asian, I eat this with warm rice. The two cups of water that we added actually is a nice soup that you can pour over your warm rice. I will have this as my lunch at work! I will bring extra for tasting.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Mr. Sebastian: Black Pepper Crab

Hi All,

Say "Hi" to Mr. Sebastian. The Little Mermaid is my favorite Disney movie, I love Ariel the Mermaid Princess, but I also love eating her little friend, Mr. Sebastian.

This is one of my most favorite dish that's easy to make and taste like restaurant food. The first time my mom and I made this, we were very surprised how easy it is to make! We were at 99 Ranch Supermarket and the dungeness crabs were on sale!! Only 4.99/lb! So we decided to buy cook this tonight.

Valentine's day is near, and you will definitely impress your other half with this dish. No guy doesn't like crabs. If he's not a crab lover, break up immediately! j/k! You can also just steam it and it still tastes wonderful.

This blog may NOT be suitable for children, since I will show you how to prepare a LIVE crab.

Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 20 minutes
Serving Size: 2-3 people 
Price: $10.25 (Compared to restaurant price?!!)

- 1.5 to 2.5 lbs of LIVE dungeness crab (We got 1.81 lb crab, buy at least 1.5 lb crab) : $9.00
- 3 stalks of green onion (75 cents)
- 1 whole garlic (25 cents)
- 2 inch of ginger (25 cents)
- 8 red hot chili (from garden) - You can add more if you like it more spicy
- 3 tablespoons of Lee Kum Kee Oyster Flavored Sauce
- 1 teaspoon of soy sauce
- 3 tablespoons of black pepper

Directions of Cooking:

1. Start the steamer so that it will be ready when you are ready to put the crab in.
2. I think killing the crab first is more humane than steaming the crab alive. At least it is instant death. Take a big knife and flip the crab upside down so that it will not fight you. Drive the knife down in the middle of the crab (usually the middle is at the point where the triangle shape belly is) 
 3. Take the triangle shape cover off the belly.
 4. Don't forget to wash the crab.
 5. Separate the head of the crab from the rest of the body. I like the membrane from the head so I carve the membrane out from the head.
 6. Put the crab in the steamer and set the heat of the stove on HIGH. You can leave the crab in the steamer for 15 minutes.
7. While the crab is cooking in the steamer, you can prepare the black pepper sauce.
8. Cut the green onions, whole garlic, ginger and chili into fine small pieces. The ratio of the ginger, garlic and green onion should be 1:1:1 once it is cut. You can add more chili if if you like it spicy.
 9. Add a little olive oil (we always cook with olive oil) into a wok/pan. We like to use a wok which has a cover. Saute the onions, garlic, chili and ginger for a little bit. Then add the oyster sauce, black pepper and soy sauce. ALWAYS taste as you are adding the sauces. 
 10. After the sauce is done, turn off the stove for the wok and check on the crab. The crab should be about 90% cooked, which is ok since we are going to cook it again in the wok later.
11. The crab should be orange/red color. Take the crab out of the steamer and there should be the crab juice which we will mix in later.

12. Pull apart all the legs from the body. Cut the crab body into 4 pieces and halfway crack all the legs and leg joints so the sauce can seep into the crab meat later.

13. Take the crab lungs out like below. We can't eat the lungs.
14. Set the stove on low heat and pour the crab juice into the sauce.
 15. Mix the cracked crabs into the sauce. Fold the sauce into the crab.

16. Cover the wok for 5-10 minutes and cook the crab together with the sauce on LOW heat.

17. After 5-10 minutes.... VOILA. You can eat this with warm rice.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Chinese Steamed Fish

Hi All,

This is an unexpectedly super easy recipe. I love the Chinese Steamed Fish at the restaurants and my mom just taught me how to do this tonight. This is a super healthy dish. Just make sure you eat this dish HOT!

Preparation time: 2 minutes
Cooking time: 15-20 minutes
Serving size: 3-4 people
Price: $4.50

- 1 pack of of Pollock fillet - You can use any type of fish fillet eg. Tilapia (1 pack has 5 pieces) ($3.00/pack) I bought this frozen fish fillet pack at Galleria (A Korean grocery store)
- 1 bundle of Spring green onion ($1.00)
- 1 ginger (50 cents)
- 4-5 tablespoons of  Lee Kum Kee Seasoned Soy Sauce For Seafood (as needed). You can find this at 99 Ranch Market (an Asian grocery store)

 Sauce (Optional if you like spicy):
- Red hot chili (from our garden)
- Light soy sauce
Cut the red chili and mix it with the light soy sauce.

Directions of Cooking:

1. Start the steamer so that once you are ready to steam, you can just put the fish in
2. Cut the green onion into 2 inch pieces, then cut them vertically so that they become thin stripes
3. Skin the ginger, cut the ginger into thin slices, then cut them again vertically so that they become thin stripes. The ratio between the green onions and the ginger should be 1:1.

4. Put the fish on a ceramic dish, then put the green onion and the ginger on top of the fish. Then put it into the steamer.

5. After 15-20 minutes, check on the fish. The fish should be tender and you will also have some water in the dish.

6.  Add about 4-5 tablespoons of  Lee Kum Kee Seasoned Soy Sauce For Seafood. Mix the seasoning with the fish broth. TASTE before you add too much seasoning.

7. You can eat with warm rice and the cut chili sauce.

My mom and I don't eat a lot so we only ate 2 fillets of pollock. ENJOY!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Chicken Cream Corn Soup

Hi All,

I have a little sore throat from sleeping without the heater on the night before, so my mom and I wanted to make our favorite soup that we can eat for dinner and breakfast for tomorrow. You can also make this for your friends or family who are sick instead of bland porridge.

Preparation Time: 5 minutes
Cooking Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 3-4 bowls
Price :  $6.55

- 1/2 lbs of ground chicken ($3.00 / lb = $1.50)
- 1/2 of an onion (25 cents)
- 1 can of WHOLE kernel corn ($1.00)
- 2 cans of CREAM style corn ($2.00)
- 2 cans of chicken broth ($1.50)
- 3 eggs (30 cents)
- Salt (1 pinch for chicken, 1 pinch for the eggs)
- White ground Pepper (1/2 teaspoon for chicken, 1 pinch for the eggs)
- Chicken salt (optional, better if you have this since this has chicken flavor and not as salty). We use this instead of regular salt.
- 1 tablespoon of corn starch mixed with cold water as thickening agent (optional in case your soup is not thick enough)

Directions of Cooking:
1. Open the 2 cans of chicken broth and pour them into a large cooking pan and start to boil it on high heat on the stove.
2. Cut the brown onion into little pieces. (Don't forget to wash your vegetables)

3. Put the onion in with the chicken (the ratio of chicken and onion should be 1:1)
4. Add a pinch of salt and the 1/2 a teaspoon of pepper. You can add mode pepper if you want more kick to it.

5. Mix it all together.

6. Open all the other cans (Cream style corn and whole kernel corn).
7. Don't forget the drain the water from the WHOLE kernel corn.

8. Once the chicken broth starts to boil, add the chicken mix by little pieces. You can put the heat in medium/high.

9.  Add the CREAM style corn into the pan. KEEP STIRRING the soup, so it won't stick to the bottom.

10. Add the WHOLE kernel corn into the pan. KEEP STIRRING the soup, so it won't stick to the bottom.

11. Open the 3 eggs into a bowl.

12. Mix the egg well with a pinch of salt and pepper.

13. Slowly add the stirred eggs into the pan. KEEP STIRRING the soup, so it won't stick to the bottom.  Also have the heat to MEDIUM, so the soup looks creamy.

14. If your soup is not thick enough, you can add the corn starch mix with cold water into the pan. We didn't have to do this tonight because it already looks like chowder soup.
15. You can eat your soup with crackers if you choose..... VOILA