Thai Green Curry and Salad Rolls

I was out at a hostel this weekend on a ski trip. I offered to cook the group dinner.  After a long day out ski touring, there’s nothing better then some comfort food. Of the Asian variety.  I premade Vietnamese style salad rolls and Thai green chicken curry.  This is the best recipe I’ve found for that.

Scratch Made Thai Green Curry

Vietnamese Style Salad Rolls

  • 16 rice paper wrappers
  • 2 large carrots, shredded
  • 16 fresh basil or Thai basil leaves
  • bunch cilantro
  • rice vermicelli, soaked in hot water
  • 3 chicken breast or thigh
  • 24 large shrimp
  • bouquet garni and half an onion for poaching
  • peanut butter
  • Hoisin sauce
  • chili and garlic sauce

Throw the bouquet garni and onion into a sauce pan with water. Bring to a boil for a few minutes. Add the whole chicken pieces and whole shrimp. Remove from heat when cooked. Shell and devein shrimp. Cut in half. Shred or tear into pieces chicken meat. Set aside.

Boil some water and pour into a glass pie plate. Soak a rice paper wrapper for a few seconds. Place on cutting board.  Layer vermicelli, carrot, cilantro, basil, and chicken. Use three shrimp halves per roll. Roll and seal.

To make the sauce, blend Hoisin sauce and peanut butter 3:1. Add a little hot water for ease of mixing.  Serve with a dollop of chili garlic sauce on top to taste.

It’s usually served with jasmine rice, but since we were at camp, I used bulgur (yes it’s wheat) for a dish with more texture. It also cooks faster than rice.

Thai Green Chicken Curry
Thai Green Chicken Curry

BBQ Salmon and Veggie Stir Fry

I’m in the mood for veggies and protein this week.  The salmon, I improvised with onion jam, apricot red pepper jelly and some orange marmalade.  The sweetness of the glaze compliments the salmon nicely. Instead of the oven, I had hubby throw it on the grill for 25 minutes. The stir fry is centered around the mixed bean sprouts, which help fill you up with protein. They are a combination of mung beans, red & green lentils, green peas, garbanzos & adzuki beans.

Festive Roast Party Salmon

Stir Fry Veggies

I used whatever I have available, but prefer to use veggies that are sturdy and can stand up to high heat.

  • kale, chopped
  • celery and carrots, diced
  • Eatmore mixed bean sprouts, package
  • grape tomatoes, package,
  • red onion, diced
  • garlic, chopped
  • fresh ground black pepper
  • oyster sauce, soy sauce, fish sauce, Chinese cooking wine, sushi vinegar, Maggi sauce, chili & garlic sauce, sesame oil

Heat a couple tablespoons of grapeseed oil on medium high in a wok. Add garlic and saute until just starting to brown.  Add all the veg except sprouts and tomatoes. Cook until just starting to brighten in color. Add rest of veg. Season to taste with any combination of sauces. Turn off heat and add sesame oil.

Festive Roasted Salmon with Stir Fry Veggies
Festive Roasted Salmon with Stir Fry Veggies

Death by Black Forest Trifle

Office potluck lunch. Yeah sometimes I throw it all out the window. This is one of the most processed, unhealthy things I’ve eaten.   Thank goodness I had other people to consume it. Apparently, it’s bowl licking good.

Death By Chocolate Trifle

9×9”  baked chocolate cake (devil’s food), cut in small pieces (Duncan Hines needs 3 eggs)

Cool Whip, large container (works better than store brand) plus extra

2 pkgs prepared Oetker chocolate mousse

Skor bars, frozen and broken up, or ½ pkg Skor bits and Callebault chocolate, broken up

Generous handful  Callebault chocolate shavings for garnish

  1. Place in layers in large glass bowl or trifle dish:
    1. Chocolate cake
    2. Chocolate mousse
    3. Skor bars or Skor bits and chocolate
    4. Cool Whip
  2. Repeat layers until bowl is full (2 layers)
  3. Garnish top layer with chocolate shavings
  4. Chill until served.

Black Forest Variation

Add cherry pie filling after the chocolate cake layer but before the Cool Whip

trifle and I
About to devour the Black Forest Trifle

Heuvos Rancheros

Thought I’d send hubby off to work with a nice breakfast this morning. I had learned to make some Mexican food from scratch many moons ago. Found a recipe for hand made tortillas in the back of my recipe binder.  Tastes so much better than store bought ones. Also dug out the homemade salsa we canned in September. Delicious.

Homemade tortillas
Homemade Tortillas
Heuvos Rancheros Homemade flour tortilla, homemade salsa, organic eggs, Spragg's Hawaiian sausage, avocado, sour cream, chives and cara cara orange slices
Heuvos Rancheros
Homemade flour tortilla, homemade salsa, organic eggs, Spragg’s Hawaiian sausage, avocado, sour cream, chives and cara cara orange slices

Oriental Palace

It’s Friday night and there’s no food in the fridge. Still looking for a good Chinese delivery. Decided to try Oriental Palace as the ratings on Urbanspoon were very good. Ordered at 6:30, told the wait was an hour. Reasonable. We were about to call them again after an hour and a half. Then it arrived.

The food was pretty good. It was hot, tasted fresh; was not over salted or greasy.  We ordered grilled pork and vegetable dumplings, three kinds of seafood with bean curd hot pot and stir fried mixed vegetables. Being cheap, I made my own steamed rice while waiting. The dumplings I could tell were from frozen and commercially made. The wrappers were thick. The  Szechuan chili oil was a nice touch. Both the seafood and stir fry were tasty although there was more bean curd than seafood.

I can forgive the transgressions with the food but not the delivery time. Better to tell us an hour and a half rather than an hour. Will look for amother Chinese delivery.

Oriental Palace on Urbanspoon

Calypso's Taverna

Ah, Calypso’s.  This would be my second visit after a memorable first one a couple years ago. Some of us were quite hungry as we had spent a few hours in the climbing gym.   We ordered the appetizer platter which advertised for two, but big enough for the four of us. It came with calamari, poseidon garithes, spanakopita, soutzoukakia, tzatziki and pita. It was very filling and delicious.  I had the Kleftiko, which is slow roasted lamb shank.  It was some of the best lamb shank I’ve ever had. They also had a roasted suckling pig as a special. I would have liked to try that too.

The service is not boring.  Very Greek I assume. It was attentive, but not overbearing.  Be prepared to eat or take it home as the portions are substantial. Has all the trappings of a family run restaurant.  One of those gems that should eventually catch the eye of shows such as You Gotta Eat Here!

KleftikoTry out house specialty. Lamb slowly roasted to perfection
Try out house specialty. Lamb slowly roasted to perfection
Appetizer Platter for TwoCalamari, poseidon garithes, spanakopita, soutzoukakia, tzatziki and pita
Appetizer Platter for Two
Calamari, poseidon garithes, spanakopita, soutzoukakia, tzatziki and pita

Calypso's Taverna on Urbanspoon

French onion soup

I got bored of the usual, so I decided to make french onion soup. In a slow cooker. Because I am lazy. It still took 30 minutes to brown the onions! Well more because food in a slow cooker has better flavor. Anyways… Excuse the Chinese soup bowl but I should get some proper French onion soup bowls. Apparently, it is a meatless dish, usually served with a green salad. I had some sugar snap peas that I had to use, so I stir fried them with bacon and onions. Tasty.

French Onion Soup Emmental, Gruyere, Parmesan cheese on whole wheat baguette with sugar snap peas and bacon
French Onion Soup
Emmental, Gruyere, Parmesan cheese on whole wheat baguette with sugar snap peas and bacon

Big Catch

With a name like that I would expect big things. Well, it is a small food stand in the Kingsland Farmers Market. But the sushi is big restaurant quality. I had the Nine One One roll, which was crunchy wonton bits and tuna topped with salmon, fire sauce, tobiko, green onion and cayanne pepper. It is normally ridiculously hot but I had them turn it down to medium. They take the time to prepare it right, so they sent me off with a pager so I could shop while I waited. When I came back, my roll was artfully presented, completed with vegetable flowers on a nice plate. If it weren’t for the plastic tray (and the seating) I would have thought I was in a nice restaurant. One of the owners works full time in IT and does this on the side. I suspect they are going to open a real restaurant at some point. If not, I think they should.

I did take a photo, but my phone is on the fritz. At some point I will upload the picture.

Big Catch on Urbanspoon