Pickled Onions and Chillies
1 red onion thinly sliced
2 red chillies sliced
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1/3 cup white vinegar
Mix the vinegar with the sugar, salt and pepper until dissolved. Add the onions and chillies and massage in the vinegar. Let sit for 30 minutes. You can keep this in a jar in the fridge for at least a week.
These chillies are the ones I like to use but are not always easy to find. They are not too spicy but have a subtle heat. Substitute with your favorite chilli if you can't find these lovely red ones.
I always use red onion but you could use any type and it would be tasty.
Since this website is called "Pickles and Potstickers" I thought it was about time to post some pickles. This is a very simple condiment that I use quite often. I put them on sandwiches, tacos, lettuce wraps and in salads.
Ahhhh be beem bap, how I love you. When living in Korea, this was the easiest dish to love and after leaving, it is the one I crave the most. My be beem bap is never the same so please keep in mind that you can change up the toppings to suit your tastes or to use up what is in your fridge.
You must mix the gochu jang with a few ingredients to make it the perfect sauce.
The toppings to this rice bowl are a combination of raw and cooked ingredients. This creates different textures as well as different flavours.
Variations on toppings could include bean sprouts, asparagus, snow peas or sugar snap peas, spinach, tofu, chicken, pork, or beef.
Be Beem Bap (2 servings)
½ cup of gochu jang (Korean red pepper paste)
1 ½ tbsp of brown sugar
3 tbsp soy sauce
1 tsp sesame oil
1 tbsp of vinegar
Mix together. The paste is quite thick and sticky and it can take a little muscle and patience to incorporate into a smooth sauce.
1 cup of cooked rice (any kind will do, my favorite is jasmine)
3 tbsp of toasted sesame seeds
2 leaves of lettuce chopped
⅓ of a cucumber halved and sliced
2 green onions sliced
1 small carrot julienned
7-8 mushrooms sliced (any variation is good)
couple tbsp of veg oil
tsp of sesame oil
Over medium - high heat, heat a fry pan with the oil and cook the mushrooms in batches so they can have a nice colour on them, about 7-8 minutes. Add the carrots when the mushrooms are partially browned. When finished cooking, remove from the pan.
Add another tbsp of oil over low - medium heat and when hot, crack the eggs into the pan, being careful not to break the yolks. Cover the eggs and cook for a few minutes, allowing the whites to cook. Remove from the heat.
Assemble your be beem bap by first putting 1 serving of rice into a large bowl, add 1 - 2 tbsp of sauce (depending on how spicy you want it) to the middle of the rice. Add the toppings around the bowl and place the egg on top of everything. Sprinkle with sesame seeds and a couple drops of sesame oil.
1 - 2 apples of your choice, sliced
cinnamon for shaking all over
a slice of lemon for squeezing
This method is very complicated so try to keep up. Lay out your apple slices. Sprinkle them with cinnamon and then squeeze a healthy dose of lemon all over them. Pack them up for later or eat right away.
The humble can of tuna can be transformed into these beautiful cakes with just a little love. This is an adaptation of Gordon Ramsay's recipe. He uses water chestnuts which I hate but many love. So use those instead of the red pepper if you love those crunchy balls of white weirdness.
As always, I have chosen an Asian flavour profile. The first time I made these, I made them for my father and he said, and I quote, "This is the best thing you have ever made for me." A large statement and one that I was rather surprised at. Are these tuna cakes delicious? Yes. Best thing I ever made? Hmmmmmmm, I don't think so.
Thai Tuna Cakes
3 cans of tuna in water, drained well and broken up
2 green onions diced
2 red chillies, deseeded, deveined and diced
2 kaffir lime leaves diced (optional)
1/4 cup of cilantro chopped
1/4 cup of red pepper diced
2 tbsp of ginger minced or grated
2 eggs beaten
a little salt and pepper
few tbsp of veg oil
2 tbsp of Thai fish sauce
1 tbsp rice wine vinegar
juice of half a lime
healthy pinch of brown sugar
2 tbsp of chopped cilantro
Mix well making sure the sugar is dissolved.
Mix all the dry ingredients together and then add the eggs. Mix well and form into golf ball size balls. Heat 2 - 3 tbsp of oil in a fry pan over medium heat. When hot, add the balls and gently flatten a little. They look like they will utterly fall apart and some may, but just be gentle. After cooking for a few minutes on one side, flip using a spatula and a fork. I use the fork to hold the cake in place while sliding the fish cake onto the spatula. Then gently slide onto the other side. Let brown for a few minutes on that side and then remove to a plate. Continue until all the cakes are cooked.
Ramsay, being the master that he is, has these beautiful, perfectly shaped fish cakes. Mine are more Jamie Oliver style with odd shapes and cracks meant to hold some of that delicious salty, sour sauce. These cannot be eaten with your hands but must be served with a fork.
This salad is so friggin delicious and it has almost no fat in it!!! The only fat can be found in the chickpeas which have 12 grams per cup. It is a great salad if you are trying to lose weight. My friend, Robert, made this salad regularly and ate it for lunch and supper (he added chicken at supper) for one month and he lost 30 pounds. No joke. So, there are many reasons to try it but the most important reason is because it is so yummy.
There is one catch. You have to make "burnt cumin seeds." I'm sure they have a more attractive name but I don't know it. This picture shows the difference between the untouched cumin seeds and the ones I have burnt. A cast iron pan would work best but make due with what you have. Heat the pan and add about 1/2 cup of cumin seeds. Allow the seeds to get very dark in colour while stirring them. When they are dark brown - black, slide them onto a cutting board. Using a rolling pin or wine bottle, begin rolling the seeds. Build them up into a little pile and gradually work your rolling pin up the hill. Continue doing this for a few minutes until about half the mixture is powder. Place in an airtight jar.
The rest of the ingredients are very simple.
Punjabi Chickpea Salad
aka - Robert's Salad
1 can of chickpeas rinsed and drained
2 lemons juiced
1 large tomato chopped
½ cucumber chopped
½ onion diced
1/2 cup of chopped cilantro (use your own preference with this)
2 tsp of black cumin seeds
3 tsp of chat masala (National/Shan/Kissan)
1/2 tsp of salt
Mix it all together and eat like there is no tomorrow. If you want this to last many days in the fridge, don't add the cilantro and tomatoes until ready to eat.
Thank you Manju for another incredible recipe!
Thai feast with my family tonight and making a favourite - cashew chicken. This is a great dish to make if you are having guests because the flavours are mild yet rich and the combination of veggies and chicken make it a well rounded meal.
This recipe will feed a crowd. You need a really large fry pan or wok to cook it. I do everything in batches earlier in the day then cook all together later.
Tossing the chicken in cornstarch and pepper is an added step which you could skip if in a rush. It adds texture to your chicken.
Leave the green onions til the end so they are still fresh and crisp. I also cook the peppers just a little because they can so easily be overcooked.
4 chicken breasts cut into bite size pieces
3 peppers cut into bite size pieces
1 large onion cut into bite size pieces
~15 mushrooms cut into quarters
3 cloves of garlic minced
1 bundle of green onions chopped (~6)
1 cup of unsalted cashews
1 cup of chicken broth
1/4 cup + 2 tsp of cornstarch
4 tbsp of oyster sauce
5 tbsp of soya sauce
1/4 cup of veg oil
3 - 4 dried chillies (optional)
Heat 2 tbsp of oil over a medium - high heat. Toss the chicken in 1/4 cup of cornstarch so well coated. Fry in batches so browned on all sides and remove to a paper towel. Continue cooking the chicken in batches, adding oil each time. When all the chicken is cooked, add more oil and cook the mushrooms, in batches. Do the same with the onion. When you cook the peppers, just cook them for a minute or two because they can quickly overcook. If your cashews are raw, throw them in for a few minutes as well, no oil is needed for them but if there is some in the pan already then that is fine.
Mix together oyster sauce, soya sauce, 1/2 cup of chicken broth and some pepper together in a bowl.
Heat 2 tbsp of oil in fry pan over medium heat. Throw in garlic and let cook for a minute. Add all the veggies, chillies and chicken. Toss to combine. Add the oyster sauce mixture and let cook for a few minutes. Add the cashews and green onions and toss to combine. Mix 2 tbsp of cornstarch with the other 1/2 cup of chicken broth and add to the fry pan. Toss well and let the mixture thicken. Turn off the heat. If too thick, add a little more broth. Taste test.
This flavourful quesadilla is made with the leftovers from Street Cart Cumin Chicken. Besides the cumin chicken, you only need a few ingredients because the flavours are already there.
I used tortillas simply out of laziness but I think chapattis would be tastier.
Cumin Chicken Quesadilla
2 tortillas or chapattis
1/3 cup of cumin chicken (more if you like)
1/2 cup of grated mozzarella cheese
1 green onion diced
1/4 of plain yogurt
1 tbsp of cilantro/mint chutney
pickled banana peppers (optional)
2 tbsp of veg oil
Build your quesadilla by layering half the cheese, then the chicken, green onions, hot peppers if using, and topping with the rest of the cheese. Mix the yogurt and chutney together in a small dish, set aside. Heat 1 tbsp of oil over medium heat in a fry pan and swirl around. When hot, gently add the quesadilla and cover to help the cheese melt. After a few minutes, check to see if it is golden and if so, lift it with a spatula. Add the other tbsp of oil and swirl it around. Gently lay the uncooked side of the quesadilla in the hot oil. When brown on both sides, remove from the pan, cut into pieces and serve with the yogurt-chutney dip.
It was a late morning in Milton when our Indian friend, Manju, offered us some cumin chicken with chapattis and some condiments. My husband and I were in 7th heaven, so much flavour and so satisfying. For the next few weeks, we craved and dreamed about this little Indian brunch we had until one day......Manju arrived at our door. She taught me the secrets.
I'm going to give you two recipes here, one is the traditional version that Manju taught me and one is the "I need to eat this tonight" version. Manju's is obviously better but we don't always plan ahead so I wanted to provide a quick fix.
I had a private "Indian grocery lesson" with Manju at a great Indian shop that was absolutely jam packed with so many mysterious ingredients. Manju told me that she is very brand faithful and so I will share her knowledge with you. The Mother's brand in the picture above have the best pickles. I actually found them in our local Superstore and so you may be able to pick them up at your local grocery store. The KFI brand is also good, as well as Shan and National. If you can find these brands of spice mixtures or chutneys, you're good. The chapattis below can also be found at the local Superstore here in the frozen food section. Follow the instructions on the package to cook, just remember to have your pan piping hot.
Street Cart Cumin Chicken
8 - 10 chicken thighs (boneless and skinless) cut into strips
4 green chillies
1 onion minced
1 head of garlic chopped
1 thumb of ginger chopped
¼ cup of veg oil
few tbsp of white vinegar
2 tbsp of Indian garlic paste (optional)**
¼ cup of cumin seed
2 tbsp of turmeric
Put all ingredients, except chicken and turmeric, in food processor then massage into chicken. Let the chicken sit for at least 6 hours and up to 24 hours.
Set oven to 350 and add turmeric to chicken and mix well then remove the chicken from the marinade. Spread the chicken out on a tinfoil lined cookie sheet or in a large casserole dish. You don't want to have the chicken overcrowded so that they can get some colour on them. Bake for approximately 30 minutes, turning the chicken after 15.
To accompany this chicken, you need some chapattis, some Indian pickles and, of course, chutney (pictured above). Veggies, like sauteed onions and fried cauliflower, are often served with this dish as well.
Quicker Cumin Chicken
1 package of ground chicken
2 tbsp of cumin seeds
3 cloves of garlic chopped
1 onion chopped
1 tbsp of ginger chopped
1 tbsp of ground cumin
1 tbsp of turmeric
1 tbsp of Indian garlic paste (optional)
2 tbsp of veg oil
Place the garlic, ginger, ground cumin, turmeric and onion in the food processor and give it a quick whaz. Then add the chicken and pulse a few times to incorporate everything together.
Heat the oil in a pan over medium heat. When hot, add the cumin seeds and stir them around. Let them cook for approximately 2 minutes in the hot oil and then add the chicken mixture. You must take the time to work the chicken and break it up into small pieces. When cooked, approximately 10 - 12 minutes, remove from pan and serve with Mother's pickles, chutney and chapattis.
This is so easy and incredibly tasty. It's only a few ingredients and high in protein and low in carbs. It's a perfect breakfast, lunch or dinner.
The taco seasoning I use can be found through the link. It is a bit spicy but packed with flavour and so much better than the packaged stuff.
Taco Breakfast Bowl
1 package of ground turkey/chicken
1 pepper chopped
1 can of black beans rinsed and drained
2 tbsp of taco seasoning (homemade is better but you can use packaged)
1 onion diced
1 tbsp of oil
Heat a fry pan over medium heat and add oil. When the oil is hot, add the diced onions. When they begin to soften add the turkey/chicken and mix well. Continue to cook for another 10 minutes (approx) breaking up the chicken so it is in small pieces. If there is excess liquid, I drain it off. When the chicken is cooked add the peppers ( I like my peppers to have crunch but if you would like them softer, add earlier) and taco seasoning and mix well. Then add the beans and leave a few more minutes to let everything get happy together. While that is happening, fry the egg in a separate pan. To get it sunny side up like the one in the picture above, just crack your egg into hot oil or butter then put a little cover over it and let it sit for a few minutes. The steam will cook all the whites on top but leave the yolk runny.
Place your taco mixture into a bowl, gently slide the egg from fry pan to bowl then top with some cilantro. Break yolk and watch sunny side goodness ooze, so satisfying.
Makes 4 servings.
The really big question is.......am I going to be smote by a Greek God pissed off that I have put the secret "brown sauce" recipe on the internet??? What is this special sauce that would cause gods to take note you ask??? If you are from Pictou County, you already know. If you are not and have never heard of our famous brown sauce (pizza sauce), let me explain.
Generations ago, Greek sauce masters took up residence in the humble County of Pictou amongst the many Scottish immigrants. They took it upon themselves to create humble eateries where the townsfolk could enjoy souvlakis, Greek salads and ..... pizza. "Pizza!!" you say, that's Italian! Perhaps in the rest of the world it is Italian, but in Pictou County, it is Greek. The secret of the sauce stayed hidden for hundreds of years but over time, rumours spread, people met in secret places to exchange information, until finally.....there was a complete recipe. And today, I share it with you.
Now, if you live in Pictou County, I doubt you would go to the trouble of making this delectable sauce, but for those of us away, who must endure those damn pictures their friends post on Facebook of the "best pizza ever," this is for you. We can now make our own "best pizza ever," although it is not as good as the original, it is really, really close!!
This might be a disappointing photo realization for many of the meat lover's pizza. This large amount of vegetables, and that is not even including the tomatoes, is in your delicious pizza sauce. Like it or not, you are getting your veggie intake.
They are all put into the blender and therefore undetectable. So tricky.
This recipe just fits into my six quart crock pot. Perfect fit. It looks weird and wrong as you cook it, but it's not. It's perfection.
Sam's Pizza Sauce
2 large cans of crushed tomatoes (28oz)
1 cup of flour
1 1/2 tbsp salt
3 1/2 tbsp of pepper
3 tbsp of oregano
Mix together before adding the rest of the ingredients to the pot.
6 onions blended well
3 - 4 green peppers blended well
1 bunch of celery blended well
1 small can of tomato paste
1 cup of water
3 tbsp of olive oil
3 tbsp of chicken boullion
Mix everything well in your crockpot or large pot. In your crockpot cook on low for 8 hours (sidenote: I cooked it for 10 hours as well and I think it was even better), stirring every hour. If if you are cooking this on the stovetop, simmer on low for about 3 hours. We then let it cool and store it in ziploc bags and freeze it. Before you use it, we had a few tbsp of water as it is very thick . Enjoy!
I'm a mom, a wife, a teacher, a retired rafting guide, a displaced Nova Scotian and a cook. Grab a glass of wine, put on some tunes and come cook with me, it will be tasty.