Spicy Salmon Sinigang

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • medium size fresh ginger, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 3 large ripe tomatoes, sliced
  • 1 large red onion, chopped
  • 5 long red peppers/siling labuyo, or more
  • 1 tbsp miso paste
  • 1 tbsp sinigang mix
  • 1 lemon grass
  • 3-4 cups rice water, or hugas bigas, if any
  • 1 radish, sliced
  • 1 bunch mustard leaves, chopped
  • 1 lb salmon fillet, skin on, cut into 2-inch thick
  • 1-2 tbsp Patis (Fish Sauce)
  • Ground black pepper, to taste

Directions

  1. Heat olive oil in a soup pot over medium heat. Add ginger, onion and tomatoes, and sauté for a few minutes. Add labuyo and cook for another few minutes.
  2. Stir in miso paste, sinigang mix and lemon grass.
  3. Add rice water, cover and bring to a boil over medium-low heat.
  4. Add radish and cook for 3 to 4 minutes. (Do not over cook the radish!)
  5. Add mustard leaves, salmon and, season with fish sauce and black pepper. Add more seasoning if need be. Salmon cooks real fast. So simmer for just another few  more minutes, then remove from heat. 
  6. Discard the lemon grass. Ladle into a serving bowl. Serve hot.
Note:
When done right, sinigang is already good as it is, but adding some fresh ginger and lemon grass to the recipe is surprisingly delish!
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Texas Oven-Roasted Beef Brisket

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 teaspoons dry mustard
  • 1 bay leaf, crushed
  • 4 pounds beef brisket, trimmed
  • 1 ½ cups beef stock

Directions

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Make a dry rub by combining chili powder, salt, garlic and onion powders, black pepper, sugar, dry mustard, and bay leaf. Season the raw brisket on both sides with the rub. Place in a roasting pan and roast, uncovered, for 1 hour.

Add beef stock and enough water to yield about 1/2 inch of liquid in the roasting pan. Lower oven to 300 degrees F, cover pan tightly and continue cooking for 3 hours, or until fork-tender.

Trim the fat and slice meat thinly across the grain. Top with juice from the pan.

Spicy Baked Mussels

Ingredients
  • 2 lbs. mussels, cleaned
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 cup finely shredded cheese, or more
  • ½ cup chopped parsley & chives
  • 2 tbsp. melted unsalted butter
  • 1 tbsp (white) sugar
  • 1 tsp fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp hot sauce (i.e. tabasco)
  • 1 tbsp red crushed pepper
  • ½ tsp garlic powder
  • ½ ground black pepper
  • Olive oil, for drizzling
Instructions
Clean mussels, rinse and drain (pat dry with paper towel). In a bowl, mix the rest of the ingredients well. Using a small spoon, top each and every mussels with the filling. Drizzle with olive oil and bake for 15 minutes, or until the cheese has melted and golden brown over 350ºF. Serve immediately.

Enjoy!

Fried Dough Balls

Prep Time: 1 hour & 25 mins | Cook Time: 10 to 15 mins | Yield: 16 servings

Ingredients
1/4 cup warm water
1 envelope active dry yeast
2 1/2 tbsp granulated sugar
1/2 cup warm whole milk (I used Organic Soymilk)
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 extra-large egg
3 tbsp canola oil
1/4 tsp salt (I did not add any and still tastes good!)
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 ground nutmeg
2 1/2 cups All-Purpose flour
Oil for frying, about 4 cups
(1 cup) Sugar-(1 tbsp) Cinnamon mixed, for coating
Instructions
In a large bowl, combine warm water and yeast. Let sit for about 5 minutes until it bubbles. Add in the sugar, milk, vanilla, egg, oil and salt (if using), and stir to combine. Add in cinnamon, nutmeg and flour and mix until completely incorporated.
Flour your hands and a clean working surface. Turn the dough onto the floured surface and knead for five minutes. The dough will be sticky. Oil a large bowl, shape the dough into a ball, and place the dough into the bowl. Cover with a clean dish towel, or plastic wrap and let rise for 45 minutes. The size should be doubled.
friedbread-dough
After 45 minutes, deflate the dough and slice into 16 golf-ball sized pieces, and roll them into rounds. Let set for 30 minutes.
friedbreaddough
Meanwhile, begin heating oil in a deep fryer, large pot or wok.
When the oil reaches 375º F, begin frying your dough. Carefully drop as much doughs (but do not overcrowd them) into the oil (I used a slotted spatula to do it). Turn the balls once or twice (while frying) and cook until golden brown. Once fried on both sides, remove to a paper-towel lined large bowl to let some of the excess oil drain off, about 2 minutes.
friedbread.
Transfer the fried doughs into a cinnamon-sugar bowl, and toss each bread to coat. Serve warm.
Mei’s NOTES:
1. For some that don’t like “raw” ground cinnamon, the cinnamon in the sugar mixed is optional. Either way, these stuffs are delicious!
2.  I’ve used both granulated and powdered sugar (mixed and not) and they both turns out really good!
Happy frying!

BRAISED PORK BELLY

Oh, hi there, pork belly lovers! It’s been a busy day for yours truly for the past few weeks, or should I say, months? Oh, no, folks! Don’t think I wasn’t making anything to add to meiscookery just because I was busy. I was, I am and has been. LOL!

This Braised Pork Belly is one of the recipes I’ve made during my “busy” days. I made this recipe three times already within the last three weeks, I admit. Haha! And today, I am sharing with you how easy to make this tasty dish.

Braised Pork Belly has a perfectly balanced sweet and savory flavor. The texture of the slow-cooked pork belly is soft and could almost melt in your mouth. My mouth is literally watering as I am writing this dish right now. It makes me wanna make some again soon. LOL!

I hope you enjoy making this Braised Pork Belly at home, and I’d definitely love to hearing any of your feedback(s) afterwards.

Ingredients
  • 3 cups water for Parboiling
  • 3 to 5 lbs pork belly with skin, sliced or cut into 2-inch cubes
  • ¼ cup light/low-sodium soy sauce
  • 3 tablespoons dark soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup mirin or sweet rice wine
  • 5 cloves garlic, crashed
  • ¼ cup sliced ginger
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • 3 star anise
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 5 dried Thai (chili) peppers, (we prefer spicy but this is optional)
  • Ground black pepper, to taste

Instructions

1. Bring a large pot of lightly-salted water to boil. Blanch the pork belly for 10 to 15 minutes. Remove pork from pot and wash the gunk off the pork with cold (running) water. Discard hot water and and rinse the pot.

2. Slice, or cut pork belly into 2-inch cubes.

3. In the same pot, add pork belly, light soy sauce and dark soy sauce, sweet rice wine, garlic, ginger, sugar, star anise, bay leaves and peppers. Add enough water to barely cover the meat. Cook for 60 minutes over low heat.

4. When done simmering, season with black pepper to taste. Adjust the seasoning if needed. Turn to high heat, take the lid off and let the liquid evaporate, about 5 to 8 minutes. Stir the pork to make sure the meat is covered with sauce and browned evenly. The sauce should be caramelized and glistening that covers the tender pork belly.

5. Transfer to a serving platter or bowl, and top with sliced green onions and toasted white sesame seeds. Serve hot over steamed, or Shanghai fried rice.

Note:
To add any oil when making this dish is not neccesary because there would be a lot of fat coming out from the pork belly. However, adding a tablespoon extra virgin olive oil, or organic coconut oil is not gonna hurt you. In fact, it enhances the flavor even more, and it makes the dish taste “healthier”, too. If you like onion, garnish it with some otherwise it is optional.

Live life with a little spice

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