Monday, 21 May 2012

Prawn and Broccoli Sichuan Style

It's a nice light dish, and it is so fast to prepare. For two people you will need one medium size broccoli, florets cut into equal size pieces, about 12-15 medium raw prawns- devined.

6 whole dried chilies
1 teaspoon Sichuan peppercorns, ground
Tablespoon of chopped Ginger
One small onion chopped
3 Garlic cloves minced

For the sauce:
Teaspoon corn flour,
Teaspoon brown sugar,
Tablespoon Soy sauce,
Tablespoon rice wine,
Teaspoon sesame oil, 
half  to one cup of water or good stock.

Heat up a little oil in a wok, add chilies, Sichuan peppercorns, ginger and onions. Stir fry for a minute. Then toss in the broccoli, raw prawns, the garilc,stir around to combine well.   Add the sauce, cover with lid, bring to a boil, and boil for 4 minutes.   You can decorate it with finely chopped spring onions.
Serve on top of steamed rice. Or noodles.

Wednesday, 2 May 2012

Meatballs with young pumpkin in cream sauce- Fasirt es Tokfozelek

There are times when I hate Skype. And then, there are times when I love it. Today for instance, I was in touch with my mom in Romania, as I am, most times.    You talk about many things but eventually it all comes down to   "what did you cook today?"  And this is the beauty she made for the family today. Meatballs "a la my mom", with young pumpkin (sauteed till tender in dill, then shocked with an unhealthy dosis of sourcream and flour to make a nice sauce) . 
After our conversation I immediately rushed to my fridge with all my fingers and toes crosssed. I was very much hoping I have all ingredients to make the same for my dinner. As I live isolated in a mountain, I cannot just pop out to a shop as I please to buy ingredients, you know.  But this time I was SO very lucky.  I found a small parcel of minced pork (for the meatballs), I also found freezed minced parsley (also for the meatballs:), even my young pumpkin I picked up late last week, and a whole un/opened jar of sourcream. The pumpkin I only got in with my last veggie shopping because it looked so good in the shop. But I forgotten about it till today!!!

In the morning I made my husband an Irish Soda Bread, that is what you see on the top right. I am not so keen on this bread, but love to see him excited about it. And he truly loves it, so that fills my heart with joy.

So here comes the recipe for the meatballs:  
One pound minced pork, preferably with about 30% fat content. 
One egg beaten
One good spoonful of parsley. Be generous.
One clove of garlic, minced,
Teaspoon of sweet paprika
Salt, Pepper

Roll with wet hands into small balls (a bit smaller than Golf balls), and fry in moderately hot oil till they reach a deep gold colour. Or, as in my case, DARK BROWN:)   DO TRY to turn them just once.
Drain on paper towels.

The tender baby pumpkin (should be greenish and long, kind of like an Albino Zucchini). 
It looks something like this: 

Grate it on the coarse side of the grater (not mushy, we still need texture)
Sprinkle with salt
Let stand for an hour
Squeeze out excess liquid
Heat pan, add a little oil, toss in grated pumpkin
stir, then add a whole shalot and a spoonful of chopped Dill
add half cup of water and simmer gently for 10 minutes
add a slurp of white vinegar, a teaspoon of sugar,
mix a Tablespoon of sourcream with a teaspoon of flour, and a bit of water,
add to mixture, bring to boil, and done.
Test for saltyness, and adjust if necessary.