Sunday, August 25, 2013

KFC (no, not the Colonel's recipe)

As a treat for a couple of friends, I made Korean Fried Chicken. The link is from Modernist Cuisine, a site dedicated to the technical side of cooking.  I'd heard about the dish on the Food Network, but I didn't know it could be made at home. After going to my local Asian food store and picking up a few ingredients, I was ready to cook. Instead of doing chicken wings, however, I  quadrupled the amount of ingredients and cooked an entire chicken. This left me with extra sauce, but considering that it's absolutely delicious (I'm going to have to try it on ribs next time), I really don't mind.

The only criticism that I have about this recipe is that it takes a couple of hours to make--this is not a quick night's dinner. The Modernist Cuisine website gives you an idea of this by the exact nature of their recipe; don't get thrown off by the use of both grams and cups as well as percentages (and this is why I didn't want to post the recipe here, since they do a much better job). I'd save this for a good weekend dinner, but in the end, it's worth it.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Hot Chai, Winter in the City..

Back in December, I took a trip to Oregon, where a friend and I had some of the most delicious chai tea I've ever had. Now, spring is here in my little West Coast town, and I've been hit with a sudden craving for chai.  I decided to try to make my own as soon as I could afford the supplies.

My first attempt was OK, but it tasted a bit medicinal--too much cardamom and cloves, not enough of every thing else. My second attempt was much milder and smoother, and that's the recipe I'm giving you today. This makes enough for four people instead of one, because let's be honest--who's really going to drink just one cup? And if you multiply these ingredients by three, you'll have enough for twelve cups, which should get you through the week (or at least a few days, in our house).

Chai tea for four

 3 cups water
2 cups Half-and-Half
 4 full teaspoons / 2 tea bags of British black tea (Tetley seems to work nicely)

4 pods green cardamom
1 thumb sized piece (or 2 inches) fresh ginger, crushed up or at least chopped up
4 whole black peppercorns
1/2 a cinnamon stick
1/2 a cup of brown sugar

Combine the liquids and the tea into a pot and set the heat to medium. Get a ziplock bag and put all the spices and ginger together, then crush them either with a pot or a rolling pin ( you can stop when you can see the cardamom pods break open and the cinnamon break up). Dump the spices into the liquid, then stir frequently for 30 minutes, or until the liquid level drops by roughly half an inch. Strain the solids out, add the brown sugar and stir till dissolved. Serve hot or ice cold.