CHINESE - Cuisine of the Quarter, Winter 2021 (Jan-Mar)

Hey HOs! We had a very close COTQ race this quarter, with Greek and Chinese tied for the win this morning. I cast my tie-breaking vote for CHINESE, so that’s what we’ll be cooking this quarter! I look forward to exploring this vast and varied cuisine with all of you. To kick things off, I’ll share this photo of my first attempt at Sichuan twice-cooked pork belly with leeks - one of the first meals I made in 2021. It could have used more heat but otherwise turned out very well! My Sichuan peppercorns seem to have lost their oomph, though - time to order a new supply. Anyone know of a good vendor? I can recommend the Pixian broad bean paste I used, though - this is the best brand I have found. https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00A9OF6NS/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o02_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1 Makes excellent mapo tofu, too!

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Yay I love this topic! Chinese food is so daunting for me and I really want to learn more, twice cooked pork is certainly high on my list! And thanks for the DBJ recommendation, I am running a bit low on my current supply.

I have some pork belly in the freezer, I might give this one a try, do you have a recipe you’d recommend?

I feel pretty confident on my mapo tofu and zha jiang mian recipes, but that’s pretty much all I got.

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I used this recipe: https://thewoksoflife.com/twice-cooked-pork/

I omitted the long hot peppers because I didn’t have any, and forgot to add something else for spice, which is obviously why mine came out a little mild. Otherwise it was perfect! I also fried my par-boiled pork a little longer than called for because I like it a bit crisp - this made it render a lot more fat, so I didn’t need to add any oil after the searing step.

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Chinese beef stew with tendon, daikon & dry bean curd sticks. Recipe is from Amy + Jackie’s Instant Pot website & Facebook group…

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Always like the combination of beef, tendon and daikon! It was one of the must order dish in my regular dim sum place!

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Me too, love being able to make it at home! Totally know exactly what is on it… I was really pleased with how well this dish came out :yum:

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I have been super impressed with everything I have gotten from The Mala Market. Small business doing big things. Their website says the 2020 spice harvest has arrived so now is a good time to order.

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Beef stew with carrots

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Thank you so much!

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I’m actually happy for Chinese being the pick, and hope to contribute! I confess nominating Belgian, and voting for Greek, when it looked like Chinese was not in fact going to be a contender…surprise!

FWIW, will nominate Greek for 2nd quarter, think that would be good timing, which would coincide with Greek spring holidays, and feast foods. Yum.

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Comfort food elevated to living room appetizer: Savory egg custard
This recipe works, especially process description. I substitute low sodium chicken broth for water. Served warm.

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Dumplings… must be one of my top favourite Chinese things to eat!

I don’t know how to make complicated pleating and shapes but I’m happy with these.


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More dumpling ideas? Here are some I ate on my 3 trips to China. (watch full screen, click on button in right corner)

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I made some zhajiangmian “fried sauce noodles” a dish from Shandong province that is also popular in Korea

I followed a recipe from All Under Heaven: Recipes from the 35 Cuisines of China by Carolyn Phillips that includes cubed eggplant. Came out pretty good.

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Chicken chow mein last night. Not something I have cooked before and only really eaten when I was in Nepal or northern India. Very good for using up the vegetables I had hanging around.

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Teochew-style steamed fish with salted plums in brine, sour/preserved mustard greens, shiitake, and tomatoes. Normally whole fish is used but I had skate wings on hand.


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I just remember I made this a few months back. Nyonya (?) duck soup with sour mustards.

I didn’t eat it as a soup. I ate the solids separately and sipped the broth on the side.

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Looks awesome! But I still consider it a Korean dish :wink:

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That’s a beautiful presentation, @pilgrim!

I love steamed eggs - this is the recipe I started with (very similar in tips and proportions to the one you linked, which I also had saved as it turned out). I appreciated the helpful tips for the way I like the custard - silky smooth and just-set, without bubbles.

Minor modifications today - some bouillon powder instead of broth, and a single serving from 2 eggs. It did take me almost twice the time (checking the jiggle after 6 mins and then every 2), but when it was done it was perfect!

And I loved the idea of cutting through in a lattice pattern.

Topped with sesame oil, chilli onion crunch, and scallions. A lovely Sunday brunch! (And SO much lighter than its close relative, the quiche…)

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Your presentation is nice too. Love Chinese steam eggs and egg tart but hate quiche. Don’t know the reasoning behind this. Maybe I don’t like bad quiche.

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My own Frankencreation – it’s like the unfortunate result of Yangzhou fried rice having a torrid one night affair with Peruvian fried rice without, ahem, protection.

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Simple enough, zha jiang Mian is Chinese, Jja jang myeon is Korean Chinese! They are distinct enough from each other that you can draw a pretty clear line.

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“Food is a pretty good prism through which to view humanity.”

― Jonathan Gold