It’s been a busy weekend in glorious KZN. With temperatures soaring, mother sun shone down on us all weekend leaving a pink glow on whatever she touched. The men all humba-buggered off to throw their money at race horses and I was left alone at home. You would have thought that two models were preparing for a fashion show – Max and Tricky left a trail of shirts, gel and hairbrushes behind them. Between the Kouros after-shave and the Johnson’s baby powder – a gas mask would have come in handy.
Max’s interpretation of “A Blooming (blue-ming in his world) Good Day” – the July theme for 2010 – was to wear a blue shirt Bwahahahaaaaa …. He just cracks me up old Maxi! Needless to say – a few shopping trips, another few hours in front of the mirror and they were off like two debutants sporting their funky button holes. The mind boggles though …. Have I raised a moron or Einstein? We all have those really silly blonde moments though don’t we? I have had some corkers in my time.
What a joy! The house to myself – this doesn’t happen too often so on went my fave cd – at full blast so I could hear it from my work station! Out came my gardening equipment and off I trotted, bucket of ice cold wine in hand, down the garden path I tippled. Top tip #1: garden in the gloves you would wear to wash your dishes if you did them – slosh a wee bit of olive oil into each glove – and WALLA: hand treatment while you work!!!!!
I designed my garden to have two main elements. One, peace and quiet, calm and tranquility and two, the most important of the two – almost NO upkeep. So a smidgen of pruning is all it takes. It’s such light work – that I hardly ever crack a sweat, I elegantly quaff my garden with only one hand while the other one brings the glass of wine deftly to my lips. Top tip #2: It’s VERY IMPORTANT to remain well hydrated when working in the sun!
My third and final Top Tip for today is: do not throw away wilted roses. Strip the petals and feed them to you Koi fish. They love them!! And none of mine have died yet. It also looks very romantic and pretty. I am such a re-cycler!!!
Egg Fried Rice!
1tbs each of the Thai Trinity – finely chopped garlic, ginger and chili
1 onion finely chopped
1 carrot finely chopped
Cooked Basmati Rice
5 eggs – beaten and set aside
2tbl brown sugar
2tbl soy sauce
Chopped basil or chopped whole spring onions – i ran out of spring onions
at this point so had to make do with the basil.
As I am typing this recipe – which is one of my own creations, based soley on what I want the dish to taste like , I realize that this may be just a little more far Eastern than Thai food – like as far away as China perhaps!!! Seeing as I have used Soy sauce instead of fish sauce!! It tastes great though. If I am going to be totally honest – this eggy rice tastes “foo-yong-ish!”
capiche? like sweet and salty with some crunch in it!
Pre-heat the basmati rice in the microwave
Beat the eggs and set aside
Heat your wok until smoking
Add enough sunflower or peanut oil to cover the bottom.
In with your garlic chili and ginger and stir fry for 1 minute
Add the onion and carrot and stir fry for 3 minutes
Add a dash of Xiao shing (oops – this is also Chinese) rice wine and the sugar and soy sauce
Add the beaten egg and stir for about 1 minute – kind of making scrambled egg.
Now tip in the rice and stir the two together well.
Add some chopped basil and put into a serving bowl.
3 chicken breasts – each breast cut into 3 strips length wise
Soaked Satay sticks – soak them to prevent them from burning
In a bowl mix together the following:
2tbs peanut butter
2tbs red thai curry paste
1tbs fish sauce
2tbs brown sugar
Coat the satays with this sauce and marinade for as long as you can with a miniumum
of 20 minutes. Grill in your oven – but on the middle shelf. You want to just cook these
there is nothing worse than sad, pathetic, dry chicken!
5 minutse of so – turning them once will do it.
Serve with the rice.
Now for the last dish in our Thai dinner – Again, my rendition of
a Thai style Coconut Rice Pudding.
I have added to this creamy – spicy dish, a rather unusual spice. When I cooked this dish, as always
i have my finger in the pot after the addition of each ingredient – tasting. This is mainly
how i build my flavour base – mostly i think about the dish and imagine what sort of flavours
I feel would both enhance and improve the flavour. This is how I arrived at the addition of
white pepper – which I KNOW sounds a bit like I have been smoking my socks
but I DO SOLEMLY PROMISE – that 1/4tsp of white pepper raised this dish
up with the choirs of celestial angels- Lights flashed – goosebumpls possessed my boday
and World Peace was achieved if only for the 10 minutes it took me to polish
it all off!!!!! Seeeee-reeeeee-us!!!! Serias!!!
2 Tins of Coconut Milk
1 cup of basmathi rice
4 whole star anise
6 elachi – cardamon – remove the seeds and pound in a pestil & mortar
1 vanilla pod
1 thumb sized piece of ginger – peeled and left whole
1 stalk of lemon grass – peeled and bashed with the back of a knife
1 1/2 cups of Demarera sugar
1/4tsp of white pepper – piece de resistance!
In a heavy bottomed pot melt the butter till foaming and add the star anise,
cardamon and the beans from the vanilla pod –
fry gently to release all those wonderful eastern aromas and flavours.
add the rice and fry for 1 minute
add the ginger – sugar and lemongrass with the coconut milk and cook until the
rice has absorbed loads of liquid and is plump with coconut milk.
How to peel and deal with lemongrass!!!
1. Off with it’s head and tail!
2. Remove the woody outer 2 to 3 layers
3. Using the back of a knife – bash the stem to release the flavours and aromas
Unless you are grinding lemon grass right down with either a food processor or a pestil and mortar, it’s
best, I think, to leave the stem whole. Add it to your dish for flavour and aroma and remove it
before serving for as light and delicate as the flavour of this wonderful stalk is – it’s as hard
as old nails!!!!
Lastly add a good 100ml dash of cream and stir in the white pepper! This really
gives this dish wings!!! Serve in t-cup adorned with a sprinkle of nutmeg and a fresh flower!
This orchid is from my garden!
Here you go Nina of My Easy Cooking my entry for your Thai Meal Finally !!!
a complete Thai/Jan Style Meal
for your patience.
Here is the complete menu with links to the recipes:
and todays post of Chicken Satay in Peanut Sauce
with Egg Fried Basmati Rice
Coconut Rice Pudding.