All posts filed under: Sauce

Provencial Lamb Chops & Grilled Tomatoes

One thing I learned while living in France for a year is this deceptively simple and delicious recipe for grilled lamb. Herbes de Provence is a mixture of dried herbes that is typical of the Provence area in France. The mixture can be found in any market and includes savory, marjoram, rosemary, thyme, oregano, lavender and other herbes. I was inspired to write up this recipe from my recent trip to Provence where I purchased the most fragrant fresh bag of Herbes de Provence right from the source. This recipe is rated easy and takes half an hour to prepare and serve 2 – 4 people. The marinade time is for 6 hours. Ingredients: 1 pound of lamb cuts (shoulders, blades, etc…) 1 teaspoon of wild honey 2 teaspoons of Herbes de Provence 1/4 teaspoon of either khosher or sea salt 1/4 teaspoon of pepper 2 garlic cloves finely minced 1  red onions thinly sliced 2 tablespoons of olive oil 2 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice 1 teaspoon of Dijon mustard a few heirloom tomatoes or …

Đậu Hũ Sốt Cà Chua / Stuffed Tofu Braised in Tomato Sauce

Vietnamese cuisine usually consists of braising proteins or vegetables in a sauce.  Braising in a tomato sauce is a very easy and popular way to incorporate vegetables into a meal.  In today’s recipe, we will share a family recipe for tofu stuffed with minced pork, shrimp, and ear worm mushrooms braised in tomato sauce.  It is a simple and healthy dish.  The tomato sauce is great with chicken and fried salmon filet as well. This recipe is rated medium in difficulty and takes less than 30 minutes to prepare. Ingredients: 1 lb of ground of ground pork 1 lb of tiger shrimp or any type of meaty shrimp ⅓ cup of dried ear worm mushrooms (This is commonly found in an Asian supermarket.  If you are unable to find it, just exclude this ingredient.) 1 package of fried bean curd (tofu). (This is a pre-made fried tofu which has a denser consistency.) Approx. 2 tablespoons of fish sauce 1-2 stalks of scallion 1/2 teaspoon of chicken bouillon powder 2 ripe tomatoes Approximately 1 1/2 tablespoons …

Phu Quoc’s Razor Clams in a Tamarind Sauce

Another fantastic dish that takes me back to the beach is razor clams sauteed in tamarind sauce.  This dish is sweet, sour and just finger licking good.  We used razor clams for this dish but you can use any large shellfish. The trick is to get a type of shellfish where the shell will hold the sauce.  For every bite, you get both the sauce and the meat.  You first saw this dish in our Weekend Unexplored: Phu Quoc’s post. Today we will recreate that dish for you. This dish serves two people and is rated easy. Ingredients Protein: A dozen clams of your choice Sauce: ½ cup of wet tamarind paste (tamarind paste is usually sold in blocks at any Asian supermarket.) ½ cup of rough chopped Thai basil, culantro, cilantro mix (reserve some for garnishing) 4 red whole chili peppers for flavor (leave them whole as the seeds will increase the spiciness level) 3 cloves of garlic minced ½ cup of can pineapple chunks ½ cup of water 3 tablespoon of pineapple syrup juice …

Vietnamese BBQ: Lemongrass Marinade and the Chicken Skewers

Every culture has some form of street food.  The United States has hot dogs and pretzels.  Vietnam has a whole culinary dictionary of street delights.  One of the most common snack is meat skewer marinated in fragrant lemongrass and fish sauce grilled over these tiny aluminum boxes filled with flaming coals on a hidden alley somewhere.  These grilled skewers became a staple of Vietnamese restaurants in the US and worldwide.  Every family has a marinade recipe of the same ingredients but in different proportions. This is our family’s recipe that we serve at the restaurants and at home over the years. The trick to this recipe is to marinate the meat overnight.  We tried it with just ½ an hour and it was still delicious.  I highly suggest marinating these overnight and even leaving them in the freezer during the week until you are ready to consume them. We grilled these chicken skewers over a traditional Vietnamese charcoal box, but you can easily do this on any grill or on the stove.  The combination of …

Ca Kho To (Fish Braised with Caramel Sauce in a Clay Pot)

My all time favorite meal in the countryside of Vietnam, especially around the Mekong Delta, is the braised catfish in a sweet, salty and slightly sticky sauce cooked in a clay pot.  Whenever I think of my favorite home cooking in Vietnam, I dream of ca kho to (catfish braised in a clay pot) and canh chua (sweet and sour soup).  They are traditionally paired together as most family would buy one fish for dinner. They would use the filets for the ca kho to and the head and tail parts for the canh chua.  The sweet and sour soup complement the salty and sweet catfish nicely. In this recipe, we will make the traditional ca kho to in a clay pot with cat fish. If you don’t have a claypot, any heavy pot will work fine.  You can also use any fresh water fish instead of catfish and many restaurants also use salmon filet.  If your local grocery store does not have catfish, you can substitute with catfish nuggets.  For me, nothing beats the …

Sauce Series: Caramel for Braising Food

One popular way to cook Vietnamese food is to braise meat and fish in a caramel sauce.  You get that sweet, slightly bitter, and salty mixture with the protein of your choice. My all time favorite meal in the countryside of Vietnam, especially around the Mekong Delta, is catfish braised with the caramel sauce in a claypot.  It does take some time to master this caramel sauce but it will last in your fridge for a while. Getting this caramel sauce right takes a few tries.  There is a crucial period when the melted sugar foams and turns into a dark coffee color. The caramelization process stops when water is added.  I had a few incidents where I waited for just a few seconds too long and was left with either burnt caramel or caramel splattering all over the stove.  Be cautious when you are attempting to make this sauce for the first time.  Once you master this sauce, the possibilities are endless. This recipe makes about 8 oz of caramel and has a medium …

Sauce Series: Peanut Dipping Sauce

For those who have tried the famous summer rolls (rice paper wrapped with boiled shrimp, rice noodles, and herbs), you may have dipped them into a peanut sauce.  Many people assumed that the peanut sauce is just hoisin sauce mixed with peanut butter. That’s the short cut way of making a decent dipping sauce but it really lacks the depth that you would get from a restaurant’s peanut sauce. With Henry (Eat collaborator), we made the home version of the restaurant’s peanut sauce. This does take some time to make but will last in your fridge for 2-3 weeks.  You can use it as a sauce for an easy dinner of spring rolls or toss it with noodles and vegetables for a quick noodle salad bowl.  You can even have a summer rolls party where guests can assemble their own version to their taste. Ingredients: 2 tbs split mung bean (you may need to find this at an Asian grocer) 2 tbs sweet rice (this is glutenous rice and very different from plain jasmine rice) …