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Showing posts from August, 2019

Moon festival treat: savory mooncake (aka puff pastry wrapped meatball)

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Moon festival is a holiday celebrated all over east Asia, where families gather together around mid-autumn to watch the full moon, and eat snacks (because a harvest is expected soon!) 

Mooncakes come in sweet and savory. Today I'm sharing a savory version, basically ginger-scallion-soy meatballs wrapped in flakey pastry. This is a quick puff with a lean dough and a fat dough - no chilling or resting needed!

Ingredients:

Pastry: 
Lean dough:
1 cup flour
2.5 tbsp lard
1/2 tbsp sugar
1/3 cup warm water

Fat dough:
3 tbsp lard
2/3 cup flour

Meatball:
marinade:
2 scallions
1 inch thumb-sized ginger
2 tbsp soy sauce 
1/2 tbsp sugar
1/2 tbsp sesame oil 
1/2 tbsp shaoxin wine
1/2 tbsp dark soy sauce
1/4 tbsp ground white pepper
1 cup ground pork (or 80% lean beef)
1/4 cup water

optional: egg wash (1 yolk + 1tbsp water)

Instructions:

Combine the ingredients for lean dough with a fork, then switch to a spatula. The dough will be very sticky at this stage. Let rest for 10 minutes. Meanwhile…

Fluffy, Pillowy, Foolproof Instant Mashed Potato Gnocchi

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If you've ever bought pre-made, shelve-stable, room-temperature packaged gnocchi, you've been disappointed before. They're always gummy with very little potato taste. I wish it were easier to like the much more convenient substitute. God knows how many times I failed at making the legendary light-as-cloud, fluffy, pillowy gnocchi. I've made enough batches that were colossal waste of time and ingredients, I could hear Gordon Ramsay yelling in my head.

Truth be told I kinda know why. But honestly, who measures Idaho potatoes by the grams?! How big do you consider a "medium potato" to be? Do you bake your potatoes wrapped in aluminum foil, or microwave them with a lid on? What is a good amount of water loss? What is a proper amount of dusting flour? What does it even mean to work just until the dough comes together?!

If you've shared my frustrations, this is a recipe for you! It recently dawned on me that potato gnocchi are finicky because the wetness of…

Minimalist Miso Marinated Chilean Seabass

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Chilean seabass is my favorite seafood of all time. It is basically the wagyu of the sea. You can't see the marbling but you can taste the flavor - tender, succulent, delicious with the simplest preparation. 
Because this fish is naturally rich as is, I always find it bit wasteful dousing it in butter, when it'll grill in its own fat with no added oil, and come out every bit as moist and flavorful.

This minimalist, hard-to-forget recipe really brings out the best natural flavor from the fish. If you can't find Chilean seabass in store, this marinade works just as well with salmon, cod, or branzino.  You can pan sear this after marinading, but for larger portions oven bake is really convenient and grease-free; you won't even need any added oil!

Ingredients:

2 seabass fillets (~5oz portions) 
2 tbsp miso paste
1 tbsp sake
4 tbsp mirin
1 tsp sugar

suggested sides:
- roasted or poached vegetables: bok choy, string beans, snow peas, asparagus
- something starch…