CRAB – 20 Minuten!

“……… I DO THIS, MY WAY! …..”

Today my dear friends I invite you to Bangkok – for a visit to the largest outdoor market in the world – to be precise; to Chatuchak Weekend Market on Kamphaeng Phet 2 Road.

This market, also known as JJ Market is offering, with over 15,000 stalls, an eclectic variety of goods, from antiques to pets.

Going there is as much enjoyable as tiring – this place is literally huge, very crowded (even in the early mornings) and one can easily get lost in this rabbit warren of very narrow lanes.

But not to worry, there is always a smiling face helping you out and a place where to sit for “people watching” and, most of all, to enjoy one of their delicious foods.

My friend Yui one day invited me to accompany her to this Market since she wanted to buy a few items for her house in Bangkok. Good enough reason for me to have yet again another look at some of the stalls I was interested in on one of our previous visits to this vibrant city.

We arrived early, hoping to beat not only the rush of visitors but also the heat – but of course many people had the same idea and we found the place already somewhat crowded, but it did not spoil our fun at all.

After a few hours!! of walking, talking, bargaining and buying the items Yui had wanted, our feet started to object. What better idea than to go and have one of those wonderful foot massages, for which Thailand is famous for, amongst other things. I just love to have my feet massaged by a Professional that I, without fail, always fall asleep, but waking up totally rejuvenated.

Soon it was lunchtime and Yui took me to one of her favourite food stalls where she suggested I must try her friend’s Crab and Sweetcorn Soup. I do so love soups, of all kind (or nearly) and especially Thai soups.

Gratefully we sat down, ordered and very quickly a steaming bowl of my Crab soup arrived. It truly was so good, that I tried to make this at home once back here in India.

This dish is so easy to make and in fact only takes 20 minutes from start to finish.

So I will not let you wait much longer, but share with you my version of Chatuchak Crab and Sweetcorn soup.

Ingredients
(for 4 portions I used here…)

½ x pack of frozen Crabsticks (finely chopped)
¼ x pack of Thai Glass Noodles
½ x cup of frozen sweet corn
¼ x cup of the green only part of Spring Onions (finely chopped)
¼ x cup of Peanuts (dry fried)
1 ½ x cup of Vegetable Stock
1 x Tbsp Soya sauce
5 x Kaffir Leaves (or lime zest)
1 x Tbsp dry red chilli flakes (or more if you like the heat)
2/3 x Tbsp Lime juice
2 x tsp of Sesame Oil (or plain vegetable oil)
Salt (to taste)

How I made this:

In a large vessel I boiled the noodles in the vegetable stock with Sesame Oil.

Next I dry fried the peanuts, stirring all the time.

In a separate pan I sautéed, just for a couple of minutes, (in 1 tsp of oil) the chopped spring onion greens, the previously fried peanuts, Kaffir leaves, chilli flakes, lime juice and little bit of salt.

When this was done and the noodles cooked, I then transferred those to the above mixture and added the vegetable stock bit by bit to until I had the right liquid consistency.

Before serving I added all the chopped crabsticks and mixed everything well together and then served.

That’s it – enjoy.

Namaskaram
Carina

Advertisements

Meatless Bolognese all Paseo

……… I DO THIS, MY WAY! …..

Meatless Bolognese all Paseo

June is the month of Saint Antony of Padova and for many years we have travelled to this lovely city, saying our prayers at the shrine in the Basilica and seeing our friends, some of whom actually live or work at the Basilica.

But alas, this year sadly we were not able to travel – but we do so hope that there will be soon a ‘next time’.

So it was a chance for me to telephone a couple of our friends in Padova and have one of our pleasant little chats.

Whilst speaking with Antonia, she somehow mentioned a mutual visit to a charming restaurant on our last trip called “Bastioni Del Moro” in Via Pilade Bronzetti (roughly translated to “Ramparts of the Moor). This is a place which is mostly frequented by locals. We always prefer those kind of restaurants whilst abroad.

Antonia, who is a Vegetarian, ordered her food, Spaghetti con Bolognese. This raised an eyebrow with me – Bolognese? How could she!!! She just smiled and urged me to taste from her plate. And gosh, was I glad I did – it was absolutely delicious and no mincemeat (Keema) in sight. Pure vegetarian, a dish laden with beautiful vegetables and lentils and I really did not miss the meat at all. To be honest, I had forgotten all about this dish and now, speaking to her, I wanted this recipe very badly.

Since then I have made this “Bolognese” a few times, served with pasta, rice, to be eaten with chapatti or naan. Next time I will make thin pancakes, stuff those with my “Bolognese” and serve this dish as a ‘faux lasagne’.

So here it is, and I am happy to share it with you. Of course, as usual, I have given this recipe a little tweak here and there. Do give it a try and you too will be surprised how truly delicious it is.

Ingredients:

1 x large onion, finely chopped
4 x garlic cloves (crushed or finely chopped)
3 x carrots, coarsely grated
2 x large celery sticks – chopped
2 x Tbsp Olive oil
½ x cup of red lentils
4 x large tomatoes, chopped
1 ½ x Tbsp tomato puree
2 x cups vegetable stock
1 x Tbsp mixed (dry) Italian herbs
1 x Tbsp Kashmiri Chilli powder
Salt and pepper to taste

And this is how I made it:

Gently fry Onion, garlic, carrots and celery in oil for appr 5 minutes or until they are all soft.

Add lentils, tomatoes, tomato puree, stock, herbs and chilli powder as well as salt and pepper. Stir.

Cover vessel partially with a lid and simmer for 20 or so minutes – timing depends on how soft you want your lentils.

That’s it – enjoy.

Namaskaram
Carina

G O A L ! …..

“……… I DO THIS, MY WAY! …..”

G O A L ! …..

….. and my version of German Zwiebelkuchen.

As most (if not all) of you know by now the Football World Championship is on.

Last Sunday the match was Germany vs Mexico.

Jo and I settled down in front of our TV anticipating (and keeping fingers crossed) that Germany would beat Mexico, although by a narrow margin.

But what disappointment was in store for us. I am no football expert but it looked like the Germans played a game not up to their usual standard and their fans expectations.

And so when the first goal came in the first half – it was for Mexico.

Jubilation on their side, despair on my home country’s side!

And despite a bit more effort in the second half and a few near (goal) misses, the game ended 0:1.

Congratulations Mexico and ‘better luck next time’ Germany!

And since I did not want to spend too much time in the kitchen I made one of our long time ‘fast food’ dishes. No pizza for us – I cannot remember ever having eaten a pizza on our many trips to Italy or anywhere else. But ‘Zwiebelkuchen’ (Onion cake) – now that is a different matter.

So here my recipe I like to share with you:

Ingredients

225 g flour
110 ml water
25 g butter
1 pack (2 tsp) dry yeast
Pinch of salt and sugar.
And for the Filling:
400 g Onions, thinly sliced
150 g Bacon, cut into small cubes
1 Tbsp Oil
2 Eggs
100 ml cream
125 g Cheese (I used Cheddar), grated
Salt, Nutmeg, Pepper, to taste

And this is how I made it:

In a bowl mix flour, yeast, sugar and salt. Once done add the cold water and the softened butter and knead this into a dough. Let this rest for app 30 minutes.

Roll out the dough and line a Quiche-dish, which you have buttered before, (if you double this recipe then it’s better to use a baking sheet).

In a bowl mix together eggs, cream, salt, nutmeg and pepper.

Now heat up the butter and some oil and add the onions and bacon frying this mixture only until colour changes slightly. Remove pan from fire and add egg/cream mixture. Check your spices.

Now add everything on top of the dough lined dish, sprinkle a generous amount of cheese over this.

Bake in the preheated oven at 200 C ca. 30 minutes.

Serve with a nice dry white wine or a lovely chilled beer. Prost!!!

That’s it – enjoy.

Namaskaram
Carina

Jimmy Stewart’s Chicken and Wild Rice

“……… I DO THIS, MY WAY! …..”

Jimmy Stewart’s Chicken and Wild Rice

In my birth country, Germany, we do have a saying “Wer die Wahl hat – hat die Qual” (loosely translated: “He who has a choice – has the agony” and this quote was very appropriate for us last night.

It was dark quite early outside, the heavy Monsoon rain was pelting down with gusto, streets were nearly empty and we needed something light to cheer us up.

What better choice than looking into Jo’s extensive film library and choosing a film for us to see. We had not seen a film with Jimmy Stewart, one of the Hollywood greats of yesteryears, for some time, but now we had the problem of choosing one for this evening from a selection of the following films:
Rear Window, The Man Who Knew Too Much, Vertigo, Bell, Book and Candle, Anatomy of a Murder, The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance, and How the West was Won, etc.

In the end we chose “Anatomy of a Murder”, a well-acted and well-directed Courtroom drama by Otto Preminger, which we had seen quite a few times before – and it still had not lost his appeal!

But, when Jo took out the disk from its case he found an article he had kept for a long long time, one of Jimmy’s favourite chicken recipes, which apparently Jimmy liked to cook in his own kitchen. We decided to re-create this dish (although Jo does not eat chicken!) for me, and hopefully you, to enjoy.

I more or less stuck to the original recipe. I only added one or two items in order to give it a little bit of “umpf” and instead of using Wild Rice, as favoured by him, I had to use best quality Basmati Rice, since Wild Rice was not readily available here.

Hopefully you will like this preparation – as much as I enjoyed eating it.

For 2 hungry people or for 4 on slight “diet” you will need:

Ingredients

4 x chicken drumsticks

1 x green capsicum (or half green/half red) (chopped)
3 x sticks of Celery (chopped)

1 x large onion (chopped)
2 x large red chillies (chopped)
100 x gr Champignons (Button mushrooms) (sliced)
1 ½ x cup of Rice (half cooked)
Butter
Flour
1 x cup of chicken broth
½ x cup of dry white wine
Breadcrumbs
Salt and pepper to taste

And this is how I made it:

In a pot cook chicken pieces, celery, peppers, onion, red chillies, salt and pepper covered just above all this with water.

Cover and cook over low heat for app. 1 hour (or until meat is tender).

After this time, add the pre-cooked rice (drained).

Now make a sauce consistent of butter, flour and ½ cup of chicken stock and ½ cup of wine.

Cook, stirring constantly until thickened.

Add the sliced mushrooms and stir.

Butter a casserole dish – and add all your chicken/rice mixture.

Sprinkle with buttered breadcrumbs and bake in pre-heated moderate oven for 45 – 60 minutes.

That’s it – enjoy.

Namaskaram
Carina

Pancakes Surprise

……… I DO THIS, MY WAY! …..

Pancakes Surprise
(Pancakes filled with –tinned- Tuna fish and a variety of vegetables)

We all had this situation at one time – you are in need to relax after a hard day at work and now ready to sit down and watch a nice film. No cooking that evening for once. And then the doorbell goes and friends from out-of-town ‘pop in’ to say ‘Hello’. Here go all the beautiful plans for that evening, but soon the joy of seeing these good friends takes over.

Of course they stayed for supper, which was very nice. But what to do? A look into my (nearly barren) fridge – big shopping day was ‘tomorrow’ – and into my larder (store cupboard) and I came up with the idea of serving my faithful standby ‘pancakes surprise’.

These are savoury pancakes filled with all sorts of delicious items like here with Tuna and various vegetables and another one with very spicy Quark.

My friend and I quickly went to work in the kitchen while the men caught up with the latest news. But soon we were able to join them for a drink of our delicious Sula wine from the Nashik region of western India, 180 km northeast of Mumbai.

For 2 people you will need:

For the pancakes
125 g flour
¼ l milk
2 eggs
Salt (to taste)
Some butter to fry the pancakes

For one of the fillings:

Some Butter
1 Tbsp flour
¼ l milk
Salt and pepper (to taste)
1 tin of Tuna fish (in water)
2 Tbsp Capers
1 Tbsp lemon juice
250 g assorted vegetables (here I used finely grated carrots, peas, cauliflower)

Here is how I do this “… my way”

Make medium sized thin pancakes and keep warm.

Now heat butter, add flour and whilst stirring all the time, cook this until smooth. Add the cold milk bit by bit – keep stirring – ; bring to boil and add spices.

Add the vegetables (I only blanched the cauliflower florets) to the Béchamel sauce and slowly cook for a few minutes.

Add drained Tuna and Capers, salt, pepper and lemon juice – bring once again to the boil for a couple of minutes.

Take an ovenproof dish and using a small piece of soft butter smear this all over the inside of this dish.

Take some of the Tuna/Vegetable filling and spoon all over the pancake – continue until all the pancakes are filled. Roll each one up tightly and add to the ovenproof dish.

Bake in the pre-heated oven by 180 C for 20-30 minutes or until the pancakes are really golden brown.

N.B. Most vegetables can be used here, depending on your imagination and what you have in your larder.

Here is how I do this “… my way” (Part 2)

Before our friends arrived I had already made our own Supper ready to be enjoyed later on. I thought I will share this one with you as well – it’s so easy, quick, delicious but very filling.

I made:
3 large thin ‘dosas’ (Pancakes) using whole wheat (Atta) flour, egg and milk

When they were done I used up my home-made Quark by adding to this salt and pepper (to taste), Lots of Spring onions, finely chopped, 2 tsp Kashmiri Chilli powder, a generous helping of our beloved Lingham’s Chilli Sauce (it all depends how much heat you can take), mixed all this well and spread this mixture evenly over all 3 pancakes. Added one on top of the other and then rolled all this tightly together. With a serrated knife I cut our portions.
No need to keep in oven. Any left overs keep well in the fridge for the next day when I heat this up until just warm.

That’s it – enjoy.

Namaskaram
Carina

THAI STREET FOOD – PEANUT NOODLES


“……… I DO THIS MY WAY! …..”

For so many years now JS and I have been to Bangkok at least 3-4 times a year. It’s a relative easy (and very economical) flight from Kerala via Singapore.

And even though we always stayed in our lovely hotel and enjoyed Chef’s wonderful food besides the many lunch/dinners we relished at various other special places for us, I still joined our friends to try Bangkok Street food occasionally. And before some of you might disapprove, let me tell you, I have never ever been sick once – knowing of course where to eat helps. Some places were recommended by local friends, while some I found of my own accord.

Last time we were in this vibrant city was for their water festival “Sonkran”. The ‘Sonkran’ of this year is over and yes, we missed not being there with our friends and participate in the fun.

I too used to buy occasionally my Street food like they did, sit on some steps in front of one of those huge shopping centres and watched the spectacle, mainly children (of all ages!) getting soaked.

So here today I like to share with you this quick, simple and delicious recipe, my own version of “Peanut Noodles

For 2 people you will need:

100 gr medium egg noodles (or more if you are hungry)
1 x Tbsp Oil
2 x garlic cloves, crushed
1 or 2 x large onions, sliced
½ x of 3 different coloured Capsicums, seeded and roughly chopped
½ x of a medium sized Courgette, also roughly chopped

150 gr unsalted peanuts, roughly chopped

Now for the dressing

4-5 Tbsp Oil (I like to use Olive oil here)
Grated rind and the juice of 1 x lemon (to taste)
1-2 x red hot chilli, seeded and finely chopped
1 x Tbsp Soya sauce
Some fresh chives, snipped (or Thai Basil)
2 x Tbsp Balsamic Vinegar
Salt and pepper, to taste

Here is how I do this “… my way

Cook noodles, drain and keep aside.
Heat oil in wok; add onions, garlic and all the remaining vegetables.
Cook appr for 3-5 minutes until they start getting brown and soft, but be careful, you do not want the vegetables too soft.
Add peanuts and cook for a further 2 minutes.
In small bowl whisk together oil, grated lemon rind and 3 Tbsp of lemon juice, chilli, chives (or Thai Basil), Soya sauce and Balsamic vinegar (to taste). Add salt and pepper.

Now toss the drained noodles into the onion/garlic/peanut etc. mix and heat through.
When ready to serve add dressing, stir nicely to coat everything and serve garnished with fresh chives.

NB: you can also use spaghetti, if egg noodles are not available.

That’s it – enjoy.

Namaskaram
Carina