Monday, October 3, 2011

All the World's a Stage..... for Food

Recipes:
Easy Fried Rice
Mushroom and Cauliflower in soy and garlic sauce

Is the media bringing the countries of the world together? I was trying to cook Chinese food, inspired by an Australian show, in an Indian kitchen a few weeks back. There are many food-related shows on TV which tantalizes the viewer to try out different cuisines and dishes from all across the world.



Of all the shows, I like Masterchef Australia the most. Simply because, its all about the food and the various techniques to cook it. AND.. they showcase a variety of cuisines - not just Australian or European. In fact, I was surprised to see a Masterclass on Indian food :) And it was quite an interesting and different way of making a curry though staying true to the basic principles of curry-making.





Inspired by their Chinese cooking pressure test of making fried rice with a chinese-style pork side-dish, I was wanting to try it at home. I ended up making this simple and easy fried rice with a cauliflower and mushroom side-dish to accompany it.

I didn't think the Chinese style pork would have many takers at my house (My family is not adventurous when trying out pork and sea-food dishes. So when it comes to cooking with those ingredients, I'd better stick to the traditional cooking methods and recipes of Kerala, especially if I want them to eat it and like it)

In this post, there are 2 recipes. But before I go on to the dishes, I have to tell you that I've been tagged. The gorgeous, witty and super-talented blogger Dizzy Lizzie has tagged me. Lizzie's blog is so entertaining and funny that I'm usually holding my stomach and laughing when I read it. It's my favourite blog to visit when I'm in need of a laugh. And you don't want to miss the breath-takingly dreamy post about her wedding. I'll post the details of the tag in my next post as this is already turning out to be a very long post.




Here are the recipes...

The recipe for the fried rice is versatile and it can be easily tweaked to make it pure vegetarian -  just leave out the mushrooms, chicken, eggs and add other veggies instead. This dish might be far from the actual Chinese fried rice. But it was definitely easy to make - just tool me an hour.



EASY FRIED RICE


Ingredients:


Long grain Rice - 2 cups (I used Sona Masuri)
Boiling Water to cook the rice - 3 cups


Garlic - 10 cloves - crushed
Spring onions - a handful - finely sliced


Peas - cooked - 1/4 cup
Carrots - grated - 1/2 cup
Cabbage - finely shredded - 1/2 cup
Mushrooms - quartered and cooked - 1/2 cup
Chicken - without bone - 200 g
Eggs - 2
Beans - finely sliced and lightly cooked in boiling salt water- 1/4 cup (I didn't use it for the fried rice in the pics. But when I made it again, I added it)


Oil - 5 Tbsp

Soy sauce - 5 Tbsp
Pepper - 2-3 tsp
Chilli powder - 1 tsp
Salt to taste

Cut the chicken into bite-sized pieces and marinate it with 2tsp pepper, 2 Tbsps of soy sauce and salt (if needed) for about 30 minutes. Then cook the chicken till done and keep it aside.

While the chicken is marinating and cooking, wash and cook the rice. Heat 2 Tbsp of oil in the vessel in which the rice will be cooked. Add 3 cloves of crushed garlic and saute for a few minutes. Add the washed and drained rice grains and roast it for 2 minutes. Then pour 3 cups of boiling water into it and a little salt, let it boil and close the lid and simmer till the rice is done.

Once cooked, spread the rice on a flat pan to cool down to prevent overcooking.

Make an omelette with the 2 eggs and slice them into bite sized pieces and keep aside.

Heat a big wok or heavy bottomed pan. Pour 3 Tbsp of oil into it and turn the flame to high. Add the crushed garlic and sliced spring onions. Saute for a minute or till the raw smell is gone. Then add the shredded cabbage and saute again for a minute or till it has wilted. Add the grated carrot, peas, beans (if using), any other veggie, chicken, mushroom, constantly stirring in between. Add 3 Tbsp of soy sauce and mix well. Then add the cooked rice. Keep stirring all along (this can be considered as a good workout for the arms).

Add pepper to taste and salt if needed. Finally add the sliced egg pieces and give it a good mix and switch off flame.


Now for the easy side-dish



MUSHROOM AND CAULIFLOWER  IN SOY AND GARLIC SAUCE


Ingredients:


Cauliflower florets - 2 cups
Corn flour - 7 Tbsp


Mushrooms - sliced - 2 cups


Soy sauce - 3 Tbsp
Tomato ketchup - 2 Tbsp
Water - 1/2 cup


Green chillies - 2-3 (as per personal preference)
Garlic - 7 cloves
Coriander leaves - 1/4 cup


Dry red chilli - 1 crushed
Salt
Oil - 3 Tbsp


Wash and clean the cauliflower florets. When it is still wet, sprinkle 5-6 Tbsps on corn flour and salt to taste on it. Drizzle some oil in a non-stick pan. And an grill the cauliflower florets on all sides, it they are browned. Set aside.

Heat oil in a pan. Add the garlic, green chillies and spring onions. Saute till the garlic is lightly browned. Add the crushed red chilli and saute for a few seconds till it become fragrant. Add the soy sauce and the tomato ketchup.

Then add the water and bring to a boil. Add the mushrooms and simmer till the mushrooms are cooked fully and have released their water. Check for salt. Mix 1 Tbsp of corn flour with a couple of Tbsp of water till there are no lumps.

Stir the mixture in the pan continuously and add the corn-flour mixed with water. Bring it to a rolling boil. Add chopped coriander leaves and switch off flame.

Just before serving, add the pan grilled cauliflower florets.

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