Sunday, 24 April 2016

Sushi Rice

Sushi Rice

326 grams Short grain rice(2 rice cooker cups) 
1 1/2 cups Cold water 
4 tablespoons Rice vinegar 
3 tablespoons Granulated sugar 
1 teaspoon Salt 
STEPS NOTE: A rice cooker cup does not equal 1 US cup. 

Put the rice in a sieve(with holes small enough so the rice doesn't pass through) over a bowl and wash the rice with cold tap water. Use your hands to remove the excess starch off each grain of rice by using a gentle rubbing motion. If you scrub too hard you will break the rice, so don't be too rough. When the water that runs off is mostly clear, drain the rice.

If you're using a rice cooker, add the rice to the bowl of the rice cooker and add cold water to just under the 2 cup line (you want the rice to be on the firm side as you'll be adding the seasoned vinegar after the rice is cooked).

If you don't have a rice cooker, add the rice to a large heavy bottomed non-stick pot, then add 1 1/2 cups of cold water.

* Let the rice sit in the water for at least 30 minutes. This allows the grains of rice to soak up some water before cooking, which results in shinier rice with a better texture.

Next - If you are using a rice cooker, turn it on and let it do it's thing. 

If you are doing this on the stove, turn the heat onto high and bring the rice to a boil (be careful not to let it boil over). Turn down the heat to low and cover with a lid. Set a timer for 15 minutes. Once the rice is done, turn off the heat and let the rice steam for 10 minutes.

While you wait for the rice to cook, combine the vinegar, sugar and salt in a small bowl. You can microwave it for a bit to help dissolve the sugar. 

After the rice has had a chance to steam, it should be firm, but the core should not be crunchy. It should be sticky, but each grain of rice should retain its own shape. If your rice was fresh, the surface of each grain should be glossy.

Dump the rice out into a very large bowl, the key is that you want a container with a lot of surface area so you can spread the rice out. Pour the vinegar mixture over the hot rice. Set the bowl on a damp towel to keep it from sliding. Using a broad flat wooden spoon in one hand and a fan or piece of cardboard in the other, gently combine the rice and vinegar using a side-to-side cutting motion with the edge of the spoon. 

You want to separate each grain of rice, so the vinegar penetrates every surface, but you don't want to break the grains of rice or mash them together. 

Use the fan in your other hand to fan the rice. This cools the rice and helps the excess liquid evaporate quickly, which gives your rice a nice shine and prevents it from getting mushy. It's a bit tricky mixing and fanning at the same time, so if you can get a helper or use an electric fan it will be much easier. 

The rice is done when the surface is no longer wet and slippery, the rice is fluffy, and each grain is very shiny. It will still be a little warm, but it should not be hot. 

Spread the rice out over the surface of your bowl, and cover with a damp towel until you're ready to use it. 

Thursday, 21 April 2016

Bahn Mi - Pork Meatball Sandwiches, Vietnamese Style


1 lb. ground pork
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh basil
4 garlic cloves, crushed
1-2 green onions, finely chopped
1 Tbsp. fish sauce
2 tsp. sriracha or other hot chile sauce (or to taste)
1 Tbsp. brown sugar
salt & pepper
2 cups coarsely grated carrots
1/4 cup rice vinegar
1/4 cup sugar
4 10" individual baguettes or four chunks of baguette
thinly sliced cucumber (use a vegetable peeler)
fresh cilantro


In a bowl, mix together the pork, basil, garlic, onions, fish sauce, sriracha, sugar and salt and pepper and mix it all up with your hands. Roll into 1" balls and place on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake at 400F for 20 minutes, or until golden and cooked through.
Meanwhile, toss the grated carrot with the rice vinegar and sugar in a small bowl. Let sit until you're ready to assemble your sandwiches.
To assemble, spread baguettes with mayo; top with a squirt of sriracha to taste, and stuff with pickled carrots, cucumber strips, meatballs and sprigs of fresh cilantro.
Taken from Dinner with Julie  Website.  She has adapted the recipe from Bon Apetit, January 2010
Note from Arta: I am going to use moose meat hamburger instead of pork.  I am looking forward to the carrot slaw in the sandwich.


Wednesday, 13 April 2016

Asparagus, Bell Pepper Stir-Fry



tablespoon water
tablespoon orange juice 
tablespoon rice vinegar
tablespoon sugar
teaspoon ketchup 
½teaspoon salt
1tablespoon vegetable oil 
pound asparagus, trimmed and cut on bias into 2-inch lengths
red bell pepper, stemmed, seeded, and cut into 2-inch long matchsticks
scallions, green parts only, sliced thin on bias

1. Combine water, orange juice, vinegar, sugar, ketchup, and salt in bowl.
2. Heat oil in 12-inch nonstick skillet over high heat until smoking. Add asparagus and bell pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until asparagus is spotty brown, 3 to 4 minutes. Add orange juice mixture and cook, stirring once or twice, until pan is almost dry and asparagus is crisp-tender, 1 to 2 minutes. Transfer to serving platter, sprinkle with scallion greens, and serve.

From Cooks Country

Monday, 4 April 2016

chili-lime sweet potato tacos

Chili-Lime Sweet Potato Tacos


Quick Pickled Radishes:


     5 radishes, trimmed and thinly sliced
·       1 tbsp (15 mL) lime juice
·       pinch each salt and pepper
·       1 tbsp (15 mL) chopped fresh cilantro

Sweet Potato Tacos:

·       1/2 cup (125 mL) dried green lentils, rinsed
·       1 tbsp (15 mL) olive oil
·       350 g sweet potato, peeled and cut in 1/2-inch (1 cm) chunks
·       1 onion, chopped
·       2 tsp (10 mL) chili powder
·       1/2 tsp (2 mL) salt
·       1 tbsp (15 mL) lime juice
·       12 soft flour tortillas (6 inches/15 cm), warmed
·       1 avocado, peeled, pitted and sliced

Quick Pickled Radishes: In bowl, stir together radishes, lime juice, salt and pepper. Let stand for 20 minutes. Stir in cilantro.

Sweet Potato Tacos
: Meanwhile, in saucepan of boiling water, cook lentils
until tender, 12 to 15 minutes; drain. (Make-ahead: Rinse under cold water; drain again. Store in airtight container for up to 24 hours.)

While lentils are cooking, in large nonstick skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat; cook sweet potato, onion and chili powder, stirring, until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Stir in 1 cup water; bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium; cook, stirring, until potatoes are softened, about 12 minutes.

Stir lentils and salt into sweet potato mixture; cook, stirring and adding water, 1 tbsp at a time, to reach desired consistency, about 1 minute. Stir in lime juice. 

Spoon about 1/4 cup of the sweet potato mixture onto each tortilla. Top with radishes and avocado.

From Canadian Living March 2016