Tag Archives: NYT Project

NYT Project: Malaysian-Inspired Pork Stew

13 Feb

Winter has finally hit our fair city. We’ve lucked out this winter, being spoiled with double-digit temperatures and little snow. The last few days, however, have brought with them a cold front and even some actual snow! Since winter decided to show up, I decided to combat the chills with some Malaysian-inspired pork stew from the NYT Cookbook.

The aromas from this lovely dish permeated the house as they simmered away on the stove for an hour or so. The spicy rub for the pork was balanced out nicely with the coconut milk and the herb and lime juice garnish. Lots of great texture and taste in this one. An instant classic at our place.

Serves 4.

Ingredients

Spice Rub

3 tb minced garlic
3 tb curry powder
2 tb ground cumin
1 tb paprika
1 tb cayenne pepper (less if you don’t want a lot of heat)

2 pounds boneless Boston butt or picnic shoulders, cut into 1-inch cubes
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Stew

5 tb olive oil
2 red onions, thinly sliced
3 tb minced fresh ginger
3 plum tomatoes, cored & diced
¼ c soy sauce
1-1/2 c unsweetened coconut milk
1 c dry white wine

Garnish

¼ c roughly chopped basil¼ cup roughly chopped mint
¼ c roughly chopped cilantro
½ c roughly chopped unsalted roasted peanuts
1 lime, juiced
5 dashes hot sauce
1 teaspoon brown sugar

Directions

1. In a large bowl, mix together the spice rub ingredients.
2. Pat the cubed pork dry with a paper towel, season with salt & pepper and then put in the bowl with the rub. Toss to coat.

Pork's been all rubbed up....

3. Heat 3tb oil in a heavy-bottomed pan til the oil shimmers but does not smoke. Add in the meat in an even layer and brown on all sides, roughly 10 minutes. (You may need to do the meat in batches in order to avoid overcrowding your pan.)   Remove the meat from pan and place on a platter.
4.  Heat the remaining 2tb of oil to medium heat. Toss in the onions and sauté for 13-15 minutes.
5. Add in the ginger & tomatoes. Stir and cook 2 minutes.

Onions, tomatoes & ginger into the pan...

6. Add the pork back into the pan along with the soy sauce, wine & coconut milk.  Bring to a simmer and skim off any fat that comes to the surface.

Everyone into the pool!

7. Cover and lower heat. Simmer for 1 – 1 1/2 hours.
9. When the pork is tender, serve on a bed of rice and top with the garnish as listed above.

Garnish of fresh herbs, peanuts, hot sauce & brown sugar.

Faceplant-inducing.

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NYT Project: Stir-Fried Beef

9 Jan

Stir-fried dishes are a great way to use up lots of ingredients in your fridge and are incredibly adaptable. You can pretty much throw any conceivable ingredient into your pan and make something tasty. So while they are not new to me, I have a bad habit of not getting my pan really, really hot to cook the meat. There’s something intimidating about cranking the dial on the stove to the highest setting, letting the oil get literally smoking hot and then tossing in my chosen ingredients for the day.  I think my fear is founded: I don’t want to burn anything, including myself.  Having said that, I know the major difference between restaurant food and home-cooked is heat (and butter).

So nuts to this, I thought, I’m going to do it the way I am supposed to do it! I am going to crank the heat up on this sucker and get a good sear on my flank steak! And I am going to wear long sleeves just in case. In the end, it was initially nerve-wracking but when I saw the beautiful crust on the steak, I was emboldened. Yes, it spattered a bit but I lived to tell the tale and the meat came out perfectly: nice crunch on the outside, just past rare on the inside.

Note:  this recipe is not exactly as it shown in the NYT Cookbook. I adapted it to suit my tastes and to become a full meal by adding rice noodles and peppers. I also found their original recipe for the sauce too salty, so I added some sugar. Feel free to leave it out if you don’t want it.

Serves 2.

Ingredients

1 1/2 lb flank or skirt steak, cubed
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1 tb  sugar
1 ts salt
1/4 ts pepper
1 tb canola oil
4 tb corn or canola oil
3/4 c rice wine vinegar
3/4 c dry white wine
2 tb soy sauce
1 tb fish sauce
2 tb sugar
1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
1 sweet pepper, thinly sliced
1 1/2 scallions, sliced lengthwise
1 tb butter
1 lime, cut into wedges

Directions

1. Toss the beef in a bowl with the salt, sugar, garlic and 1 tb canola oil. Marinate in the fridge for two hours.
2. Meanwhile, combine the rice wine vinegar, white wine, soy,  fish sauce and sugar. Taste and add salt and pepper as necessary.
3.  When you’re ready, divide the meat into two portions, and do the same with the peppers and onions. Pour 2tb oil into your wok and turn the heat to max. When your oil is smoking, add the meat in one even layer to the wok. Let it sit until a crust forms, then flip over to brown the other side.  (This whole process should take 5 minutes or less.)
4. Add half the onions and pepper. Stir and let cook for 1 minute.
5. Add half of your vinegar/wine mixture, shaking the pan if necessary to loosen the meat from the pan. Add half the butter and shake your wok until it has melted.
6. Remove everything from the pan and then repeat your process.
7. Serve with lime wedges over rice or rice noodles.

NYT Project: Elizabeth Frink’s Roast Lemon Chicken

28 Nov

With so many ways to roast up a chicken, sometimes I find it a little overwhelming to choose one. Fortunately, the NYT Cookbook had a recipe that looked both delicious and simple. I think I may have used a bit too much salt in seasoning the bird, as the pan juices, when reduced, were overly sodium-ized. (Sure…that’s a word.) I tend to err on the side of using more seasoning than less as I’m disappointed when bland food arrives at the table. However, because flavours intensify when you reduce them, the salt flavour increased in the pan juices and even after cutting them with more water, I still couldn’t use them. Ah well – next time!

The bird itself, though, was fantastic. The vibrant lemon flavour came through and the meat was tender and juicy. I used cilantro instead of parsley, as that’s what I happened to have in the fridge and what I prefer to use in general. Either parsley or cilantro work well with chicken, lemon and garlic, so feel free to use either. I predict this recipe will be rotated in to my regular rotation!

Ingredients

1 3lb chicken
1/2 ts salt
1/4 ts black pepper
2 lemons
6 cloves garlic
2 tb unsalted butter
2 tb olive oil
1 tb flat leaf parsley, coarsely chopped, plus extra for garnish

Directions

1. Preheat your oven to 325F.
2. Place the chicken in a large baking dish and season inside and out with salt and pepper.
3. Remove the skin from one lemon with a peeler and rub the skin over the outside  of the chicken. Quarter the rest of the lemon and squeeze over the chicken. Place the lemon pieces and garlic cloves inside the bird.
4. Melt the butter with the olive oil in a small pan. Pour about one-third of the mixture inside the chicken.  Tie the legs together with kitchen string and pour the remaining mixture over the chicken.
5. Roast the chicken for 90 minutes or until a meat thermometer reads 165F, basting every 15 minutes with the juices from the pan. Half an hour before the bird is done, pour juice from the second lemon over it and sprinkle with parsley.
6. When done, transfer the chicken to a cutting board and let it sit for 15 minutes. Meanwhile, pour 1/2c water/broth into the roasting pan and place it over high heat. As it comes to a boil, scrape up the pan drippings with a wooden spoon. Reduce the juices to the desired consistency and season to taste with salt and pepper.
7. Carve the chicken and serve the sauce on the side.

*side note – the leftovers make for excellent chicken sandwiches – assuming you’ve got any chicken left!

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