A food world devoted to the young chef and those young at heart

Sunday, October 2, 2011

The First Step is Acceptance…

Its been going on a majority of my life…this addiction…and I feel I must now confess it to you all before the problem gets any worse: I am an Asian food junkie. I know, I know it’s not healthy to be obsessed but I just can’t help it! Whether it’s Indian, Thai, Vietnamese, Eastern Chinese, Japanese, Korean- I adore and am captivated by it all. The flavors are so warm and fresh, interesting and unique, wonderful and just plain fab-tab-ulous! From ginger to lemon grass, kimchi to sriracha, soy to fish sauce, black bean paste to sesame oil- it’s all too wonderfully overwhelming!!! *goes into a minor food pondering coma*

Sorry about that, but you get the point I love Asian cuisine. Others may be a little weary for me, my roommate at camp confessed her fears that I was in actuality a Chinese woman trapped inside a skinny German teenage body…But at least I know I have a problem…right? Now I can work on getting over the addiction; perhaps over indulgence is the answer…yeah…I’ll just make so much Asian food I get sick of it…that should work!-No? You disagree? Too bad, I’m doing it anyway :)

So this week’s recipe:

Ginger-Soy Tilapia and Stir-Fry
Serves 3-4

• 3-4 frozen Tilapia fish fillets (or any white fish)
• 2 tsp and 1 tbsp diced ginger (separated)
• ¼ cup soy sauce
• Red and black pepper
• 1 tsp garlic chili paste aka sriracha
• ½ tsp toasted sesame oil
• ½ tsp honey
• ¼- ½ head of cabbage (cut into shreds)
• 1 can of bean-sprouts (drained and rinsed)
• ½ cup julienned carrots
• 1 cup sliced mushrooms
• ½ large onion (diced)
• 2 cloves garlic (diced)
• ½ cup summer squash cut into ½ in strips

(substitute any veggies you see fit, broccoli is always wonderful, water chestnuts, baby corns, eggplant, peas, etc)

The Fish:
Pre-heat the oven to 350°F. Cover a cookie sheet in parchment paper or foil leaving enough excess to fold over so you can make a pouch for the fish to bake in. Lay the fillets on the paper or foil and drizzle with 1 tbsp soy sauce, some toasted sesame oil and ginger. Seal the fish ‘packet’ by scrunching the foil or paper onto itself and poke the top with holes using scissors. Bake in the oven for 20 minutes or until the fish is no longer pink.
The Sauce:
In a small bowl or liquid measuring cup, combine the soy sauce, sesame oil, garlic chili paste, remaining ginger, garlic, honey, pepper and cornstarch. Whisk with a fork until nicely combined. Set aside.
The Stir Fry:
While the fish is cooking, heat a large skillet of wok with a tsp or so of oil on medium high heat. Once the oil is smoking, add onion and sauté until caramelized and cooked clear. To caramelize onions simply allow them to cook until they begin to stick and there is a golden color on the bottom of the pan (this is fond). Add dribbles of water to unstick everything. Repeat the process until onion is cooked.

Next add the carrots and mushrooms, sauté with a similar process used above until cooked. Add squash, sauté until cooked. Add cabbage and bean sprouts, cover the pan with a lid and reduce heat to medium. Steam until the cabbage is cooked.

Pour in sauce, stir around and cook until thickened.

Serve :)

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