Tag Archives: pepper

Taiwanese Salt Pepper Chicken (鹽酥雞)

16 Jun

chickenAs usual, all measurements are just a guideline, but this came out quite delicious! Just need to figure out now to make it even crispier – if I remember correctly, my 2nd uncle (who’s a fantastic cook) double fried it in a large vat with lots of oil and over a gas stove outdoors.

Ingredients:

Marinade:
1 lbs chicken – cut into bite sized pieces
1 tbsp cooking wine
3 tbsp soy sauce
1 scallion/green onion – segmented
sliced ginger – large pieces
sugar

Coating:
sweet yam flour/starch
corn starch
flour
egg <– I didn’t use this, but will try the next round

Seasoning:
peppercorns
salt
five spice powder

Other:
oil
pan
pot
tongs/chopsticks
gloves
paper towels/lettuce leaves

1) Combine all the marinade ingredients and let sit for at least 10 minutes. Don’t cut the ginger and green onion too small or they might stick onto the chicken and will burn when you fry it.
2) Heat oil slowly in wok/pan/pot. I also pan fried a few pieces to see the effect – about the same, but used less oil. For best results use a gas stove, heat on low heat for about 5 minutes, then increase to low/medium. Adjust accordingly.
3) Combine all the dry ingredients for the coating. Should be 50% yam flour, 15% flour, 35% corn starch.
4) When the oil is hot enough, coat the chicken in the egg wash (optional) then dip into dry coat mix. Make sure it’s fully coated, squeeze as much powder as you can get on it (makes it crispier/fluffier) and drop into oil. Try a piece at first to test if the temperature of the oil is right. Fry till brown and remove onto paper towel or lettuce leaf.
5) Top with seasoning (see below) and serve immediately.

Seasoning:
1) In pan, panfry dry ingredients on very low heat till fragrant. Pepper 50%, salt 40%, five pice powder 10%.

Homemade Salsa

16 May

Want to whip up something healthy for when guests come over? Hate that overprocessed salsa in the jar? Well I was inspired by the peppers episode from Chef at Home with Michael Smith to chop and combine a delicious homemade southwestern salsa. Play with the ingredients, substitute with organics, everything to taste – and that’s why there are no measurements in my recipe!

  • Tomatoes – cubed or chopped coarsely but still bite sized. I used a combo of tomatoes I found at my neighbourhood grocer – steakhouse, roma and hothouse. UPDATE: Use all romas for best flavour – maybe toss in a few heritage ones for colour.
  • Onion – diced a bit more finely. I prefer to use red, but use what you will.
  • Cilantro – Michael Smith said that this was the core of Southwestern cooking. Chopped finely.
  • Poblano Pepper – diced finely. A mild chili pepper from Mexico – gives it a bit of a bite, without the fire. When dried, this is the Ancho chili. Start with 1/3 of the pepper, then add more if you want it spicier. I got mine at Whole Foods – they have a pretty good selection of peppers. Well they should, as they’re based in Texas!
  • Lime – all of the lime peel (grated, thank you) and lime juice. Tip: to get the most juice from your lime, microwave it for 10 seconds. Start with 5 if you have a powerful microwave or else you’ll be burned (from experience).
  • Seasonings – sea salt and freshly ground pepper – The salt makes all the difference! Be liberal with it! And pepper to taste.

UPDATE (1 hour later)

As per usual, I decided to up the recipe. Added:

  • 1 spring onion, chopped
  • 1 tbsp virgin olive oil – to make it more smooth <– or less
  • 1/2 teaspoon of Agave syrup, for a bit of sweetness
  • and more sea salt

Eat with nachos (I prefer the local Que Pasa corn nacho chips) or Jalapeno Cheese bread from Save on Foods bakery