Thursday, May 6, 2010

Miso Soup, Chicken Satay, and Red Chicken

Today we made a bunch of really delicious food.

Yesterday the class marinated strips of chicken breast, and today we stuck them on skewers and made chicken satay with peanut sauce. It was probably the best chicken satay I've ever had; most places don't marinate it first so it usually isn't as tender as it was today. The peanut sauce was good enough to eat with a spoon. Not that I did that or anything (I totally did).

We made the red chicken with the thighs and legs from the satay chickens. It's a braised chicken dish cooked in a Chinese sand pot, with all the usual suspects for Chinese food, plus dark soy sauce. The chicken ends up bright red and really tender.

I was bugging Chef all day to show me the miso soup; since I had a pretty good idea of how to make it I just wanted to get started. The broth used is Nori Kombu, a seaweed, broth, and the whole thing takes about four steps. Heat the broth, add some dried nori which will bloom in it, dissolve the dashi with some hot broth, add it to the pot, and then add tofu. Done. Miso soup is my favorite, so I'm glad I can make it at home now.

Chef made this really crazy fried fish. He basically filleted a fish on both sides, leaving the head and tail attached, scored the fish, stuffed the tail through the head so the tail came out of the mouth, and battered and fried it. He made an Asian sauce with black soybeans and ground pork to serve with it. It was really freaky looking but pretty delicious.

Tomorrow is Middle Eastern day, so I'm in charge, or so Chef says. He told me to start on the eggplant for the baba ghannouj first thing, and then tried to tell me I was doing it wrong. I don't think so. I split the eggplants, brushed them with olive oil, salted them, and grilled them. Then I scooped out the insides so we have them ready for the dish tomorrow. He wanted me to "fire-roast" the eggplants; I think he wanted to use the skin! No thanks, dude. We'll see who knows more about baba ghannouj tomorrow, when mine is the best he's ever tried.

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