Smooth Stir-Fried Chicken, Chilli jam and Green Mango Hot/Cold Salad

Smooth Stir-Fried Chicken, Chilli jam and Green Mango Hot/Cold SaladSo far, a few of my recipes have been inspired by my time at the begging bowl, as I have just reached the end of a seventy hour week in the kitchen, this week is no exception.

Despite being worked like a dog I remained loyal to Articuleat and squeezed in a cheeky recipe at work. This is quite an intricate dish to pull off but well worth the effort. I have always liked the idea of a hot and cold stir-fried salad, so I created this dish with a little inspiration from this thought.

In Thailand there are two types of chilli jam that are commonly eaten; grilled or deep-fried. For this dish I have chosen the latter, as it works as a rich base for this amazing salad.

Deep-fried chilli jam is an amazing product, it can be let down with stock or coconut cream to create rich salad dressings, glazes and sauces – however, it is not the easiest thing to make. It involves a lengthy, yet simple process of slicing, frying, drying and then combining with palm sugar, tamarind and fish sauce. To get the best results you need to cook the deep-fries individually as each vegetable cooks at a different rate.

The key to making an excellent deep-fried chilli jam comes in the consistency of the deep-fried ingredients. Every ingredient needs to be sliced wafer thin in order for them to cook at an even rate. A light golden crisp on the garlic, shallots, ginger, chillies and prawns comes together to create a rich, smoky, spicy base for the chilli jam. It is incredibly important to have a sharp knife in order to slice these ingredients thin enough. Slicing and cooking deep fries is a difficult game to get right as each stage takes a long time. Bear in mind that it can also go epically wrong at any moment if the oil gets too hot. – The last thing that you want is to burn your deep-fries (or fry your hands).

Although it takes a little effort to get the chilli jam made, you will certainly be pleased to have it in the kitchen. The palm sugar and oil act as a preservative, giving the jam a longer shelf life.

Many of the strange ingredients that are included in this recipe can be sourced from oriental supermarkets. The majority can also be found in most large supermarkets. Here at Articuleat I like to keep you on your toes, trust me once you have tried this dish you will run a marathon to have it on your plate again.

Anyway that’s enough from me for today and I hope you enjoy the recipe.

(Serves 2, takes 1 ½ hours, with plenty of spare jam)

Ingredients

(For the chilli jam)

-200g banana shallots, peeled and thinly sliced

-200g garlic cloves, peeled and thinly sliced

-1 knob of ginger, peeled and julienned

-100g dried long red chillies

-50g, dried prawns

-2 tspn gapi paste (fermented shrimp paste), roasted in tin foil on low heat until smelly

-60g palm sugar, roughly chopped

-100ml fish sauce

-100ml tamarind water (buy in packs and soak yourself)

-1 litre cooking oil

(For the stir-fry salad)

-2 chicken breasts, roughly chopped

-40g green beans, topped & tailed, halfed

-40g basil, washed and picked

-40g green mango, peeled and julienned

-40g ong choi (morning glory), roughly chopped

-2 pinch deep-fried garlic

-2 pinch deep-fried shallot

-20g coriander, washed and picked

-200ml chicken stock

-1 fresh long red chilli, thinly sliced into chilli’os

-1 pinch caster sugar

-1 pinch ground white peppercorns

Method

  1. Begin by deep-frying your chilli jam ingredients. Begin with the shallots as these have the highest moister content and therefore take the longest to complete. To do this, heat the oil to a high heat in a large wok (to test that the oil is hot enough for frying drop a few shallots into the oil – if they float and bubble it is ready). Using a fork stir the shallots in the oil making sure they cook evenly. When they are golden brown remove from the hot oil and drain on kitchen paper. To ensure no deep-fries are stuck together, pick them apart using two forks. Repeat this process with the garlic, ginger, dried prawns and the dried red chillies (bare in mind that the red chillies and prawns take less time as they have a low moister content).
  2. Once all the deep-fries are cooked take a pinch of crispy garlic and shallots and put them to one side for a garnish later. Using a food processor combine all the deep-fried ingredients with half the oil that was used for cooking (be sure to let the oil cool before using). Once combined place on a low heat and add the palm sugar and fish sauce. Keep stirring until the sugar caramelises, causing the jam to thicken and clump together. Lastly remove and add the tamarind water – the mixture should be sweet, salty, sour and hot, the magic is in the balance.
  3. Now that the chilli jam is made its time for the easy bit, making the stir-fry. In a hot wok heat a little of the excess oil from deep-frying (this can be kept as fragrant oil to cook with in the future). Throw in the chicken and wok until browned and hot throughout. Next throw in the green beans and morning glory and toss in the juices, then add the chicken stock. Once hot, add a heaped tablespoon of the fried chilli jam and toss – once combined, this will create a thick, flavoursome sauce that coats the stir-fry. Finish by adding the caster sugar and white pepper, then remove from the heat.
  4. Now for the cold ingredients. Toss through the basil, coriander and fresh red chilli and place on a plate. Finally garnish with the green mango, a little deep-fried shallot and garlic, then enjoy.

Smooth Stir-Fried Chicken, Chilli jam and Green Mango Hot/Cold SaladThanks very much for stopping by at Articuleat and I hope you have enjoyed your stay. I always look forward to your feedback so please don’t hesitate to get in touch for any reason whatsoever – I will reply as swiftly as possible.

See you next time,

Cheers,

Sebbyholmes

 

Thai Infused Sticky Pork Ribs with Lime & Coriander

Thai Infused Sticky Pork Ribs with Lime & CorianderIf I was told that the world will end tomorrow I would have one thing on my mind, “shit! What am I going to eat for dinner?” One of the ingredients racing through my mind that had to be eaten one more time would be sticky pork ribs. Pork being the most widely eaten meat in the world, I’m sure that I’m not alone in thinking this recipe is worthy of a last supper.

I happened to have a little spare kecap manis (Indonesian sweet soy) leftover from a previous recipe, so I used it as a base for my rib marinade. Lemongrass, fresh chillies, white peppercorns and kaffir lime leaf all come together to make this marinade a Thai sensation.  The inclusion of all these typically Thai ingredients gives the rib meat a flavour balance consisting of sweet, salty and hot that is to die for – if you are anything like me and my flat mate you will keep eating until it hurts.

Now first things first, what are all the different cuts of meat that come from a pork rib? If you are anything like me you probably assume that a pork rib is a pork rib, which change in size as they follow the spine. However this is just a milestone in the labyrinth that is pork rib cuts. So let me squeeze it into a nutshell for you so we all have a clearer understanding for the future.

Right, so pigs have fourteen rib bones attached to their spine, which most popularly are split into four cuts of meat; baby-back ribs, spare ribs, St Louis cut ribs (spare baby-back ribs) and rib tips.

Starting from the top are the baby-backs, closest to the back bone. These are distinguishable by their curved shape and small bone. The meat found at the top of these ribs is said to be the most tender. As you move further down the spine the ribs become larger, flatter and wider with more meat between each rib – these are known as the spare ribs. There are endless ways to order this cut of meat e.g. 3 & up, 4 & over, this is just butcher slang for the weight of a cut of spare ribs (you still with me?).

We then come to the spare baby-back ribs. These are not the same as baby back ribs, nor do they necessarily come from young tender pigs. These are spare ribs made smaller by removing the rib tips (which can be eaten as small, roughly three centimeter long bones). These are more commonly known as St. Louis cut ribs, nonetheless some butchers call them baby spareribs to capitalise on the popularity of baby back ribs. Anyway lecture over and hopefully, as I did, we have all learned something new about pork ribs.

For this dish I used a whole rack of pork ribs straight from the abattoir for me and my flat mate to pig out on (excuse the pun). Now the meat from a rib is subject to lots of movement during life, as a result of the animal breathing. For this reason if you throw them straight onto a barbecue, eating them will resemble chewing the grip off of a tennis racket. Unless this is your thing? We will try and avoid this by cooking the ribs low and slow until they are tender enough to melt in your mouth.

That’s enough from me for today so get stuck in and enjoy your dinner.

(Serves 2-3 people, takes 3 hours with minimal effort)

Ingredients

-1 rack, pork ribs

-300ml, kecap manis (Indonesian sweet soy) found in most oriental supermarkets and large supermarkets).

-1 stick, lemongrass, sliced wafer thin

-2 fresh, long red chillies, thinly sliced

-2 fresh long green chillies, thinly sliced

– 1 fresh birds eye chilli, thinly sliced

-2 kaffir lime leaf, thinly sliced, stems removed

– 2 tbsp, white peppercorns, spice grinded or pestle and mortared to a powder

-2tbsp, cumin seeds, spice grinded or pestle and mortared to a powder

-1 fresh lime

-1 handful (roughly 75g) coriander, washed and picked

Method

  1. This is the beauty of cooking ribs in this way, it takes minutes to throw together so all you have to do is wait for the magic to happen.  Firstly pre heat your oven to 180 degrees. Whilst that heats, make the marinade by combining the kecap manis, lemongrass, kaffir lime, chillies, cumin and white peppercorns into one mixture.
  2. Next coat the ribs in the marinade, using your hands to rub all the meat with the mixture. Now at this stage if you are prepared the meat can be left in the fridge (ideally for 6 hours) to marinate. However if you are hungry, cover them in tin foil and put them straight in the oven, cook for 2 ½ to 3 hours until the meat is tender and falling off the bone.
  3. If you are barbecuing, the ribs can be taken straight out of the oven and placed on the barbecue grill to colour, basting regularly with the leftover marinade. If not, place the ribs on a plate and garnish with lime wedges and coriander. These ribs are great served with some steamed jasmine rice.

Thai Infused Sticky Pork Ribs with Lime & CorianderThanks very much for stopping by at Articuleat and I hope you have enjoyed your stay. I always look forward to your feedback so please don’t hesitate to get in touch for any reason whatsoever – I will reply as swiftly as possible.

See you next time,

Cheers,

Sebbyholmes

Sticky & Rich Kecap Manis Barbeque Hunters Chicken with Herb Spiced Chestnut Mushrooms

Sticky & Rich Kecap Manis Barbeque Hunters Chicken with Herb Spiced Chestnut Mushrooms

Barbecue is one of the most commonly eaten sauces on the planet! This is in no way true but hopefully it got your attention. Since my childhood I have always had an insatiable thirst for barbecue sauce; so I figured it’s time for it’s debut appearance within Articuleat’ s early posts, so this one’s  for those of you that share my love for this fabulous condiment.

There are as many ways to make barbecue sauce as there are recipes to cook using it, however after much (and much, much more) experimentation this is my favourite so far. I found that lots of people use tomato ketchup as a base for there sauce to give it the correct flavour balance and consistency. However, here at Articuleat that just won’t do – I created this recipe using Indonesian sweet soy sauce (known as kecap manis) as the base for my sauce. Kecap manis can be found in any oriental supermarket and most large supermarkets.

For this recipe I have kept the barbeque sauce mild to not add any extra spice to the chestnut mushrooms. If you are into your heat however, do not be afraid to add a little chilli powder, or extra peppercorns to my recipe. The key to this sauce is in the balance; sweet, salty, sour and hot all play elements in making this sauce one to write home about.

The sticky and rich consistency is a perfect partner to some chestnut mushrooms lightly fried in herb oil. Despite this the BBQ season is upon us so why listen to me – why not marinate some meat in this sauce and throw it on the barbeque?

(serves 2, takes 1 hour)

Ingredients

(for the barbeque sauce)

-100ml, kecap manis, sweet soy (can be found in any oriental supermarket and most large supermarkets)

-20ml, balsamic vinegar

-20ml, Worcestershire sauce

-60ml, light chicken stock

-1tsp, cumin seeds

1tsp, pink peppercorns

-1tsp, Chinese five spice

-1tsp, fennel seeds

-2 heaped tbsp, palm sugar, crushed (soft brown sugar will do)

-1 white onion, finely chopped

-2 garlic cloves, finely chopped or crushed

-1 whole red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped

(for the herb spiced mushrooms)

-2, whole chicken breasts, boneless

-100g, chestnut mushrooms, washed and sliced

-1 handful (roughly 70g), parsley, finely chopped

-100ml, olive oil

-1 whole red chilli, finely sliced

-1 garlic clove, finely chopped

Method

  1. Firstly pre-heat your oven to 180 degrees. Whilst that heats lets get the barbeque sauce ready – begin by toasting the pink peppercorns, cumin and fennel seeds together in a dry pan. Keep these moving in a hot pan until you see a little smoke, then remove from the hot pan and spice grind to one powder (or use a pestle and mortar).
  2. Next fry the garlic, onion and red chilli in a pan with a little oil until golden brown and crispy (not burned or it will taste bitter). Once ready add the kecap manis, light chicken stock, Worcestershire sauce, balsamic vinegar and palm sugar (soft brown sugar) and bring to a simmer. Once simmering add the spice grinded dried spices along with the Chinese five spice and whisk to combine, simmer to infuse for 2-3 minutes then remove and cool. Finish the sauce by combining to one smooth mixture in a food processor (should be a dark, smooth, rich pourable consistency)
  3. Now that the magic is ready get the hunters chicken in the oven. Using tin foil, individually coat each chicken breast in barbeque sauce and wrap tightly within the foil (if you have time marinate the meat in the fridge for a few hours, or ideally overnight), then place on a tray and put on the top shelf of the oven for 20-25 minutes. Ensure that chicken is piping hot throughout before serving, to check poke the end of a spoon into the middle and leave for a few seconds, remove and place the spoon on your lip – if it hurts it’s ready (obviously be carful).
  4. Lastly let’s make the herb spiced mushrooms. Bring a little pan of water to the boil and drop in the chopped parsley for 20 seconds, remove and refresh under cold water. Dry using a tea towel then combine the oil, parsley, garlic and chilli in a food processor until mixture is combined (should be bright green). Once combined heat this herb oil on a medium heat until hot, then add the chestnut mushrooms making sure to coat all of them in the hot oil. Stir these regularly for 6-8 minutes until softened
    and cooked.
  5. Serve the hunters chicken upon the chestnut mushrooms and garnish with a little parsley if you’re looking to impress.

Sticky & Rich Kecap Manis Barbeque Hunters Chicken with Herb Spiced Chestnut MushroomsThanks very much for stopping by at Articuleat and I hope you have enjoyed your stay. I always look forward to your feedback so please don’t hesitate to get in touch for any reason whatsoever – I will reply as swiftly as possible.

See you next time,

Cheers,

Sebbyholmes