Fried Mushrooms

dsc_2221-1600x1200I had a few button mushrooms to use up and we haven’t had any of these for a long time.  They are batter dipped and then dredged in panko.  The batter is flour and water with a beaten egg and a teaspoon of baking powder, seasoned with ground red pepper and salt.

The dip is mostly ketchup with a squirt of bbq sauce and a tablespoon or so of sweet soy sauce.  An option would be to add a dollop of chili garlic paste.


DSC_9048 (1600x1060)The show on the Food Network that I enjoy the most is the one hosted by the spiky haired fellow named Guy Fieri – Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives.  I have the dvr set to record all the shows and we watch them during meals.  All of the recipes are quick and easy although some of the sauces and seasoning recipes can be quite involved.

We saw this dish put together the other day and thought it looked pretty good.  It took some Google-Fu to find the recipe, the chef mentioned the name of it on the show but I never could really make out what he said despite several rewinds.DSC_9051 (1600x1060)I garnished this one with powdered sugar and a glop of creme fraiche, whipped cream or ice cream would work well.  I can readily imagine variations on this theme using different fruits.  I’m thinking peaches would be great using the same seasonings, berries should work but I’d have to give that some thought.  Mrs J nominates fresh pears.

Hah!  glad I found this Youtube before I hit publish.  It would seem correct that the name refers to the basic batter so a better title to this post would be Apple Pannekoeken.

Deep Fryer-Gadget Post

I decided to finally get a counter top deep fryer the other day.  I think it was the breaded onion rings that tipped me into it.  I did some research on line and came across this one.  It was rated as the best by one of the online groups and the reviews I read didn’t contradict that assessment.  After a couple of frying sessions with it I’m comfortable recommending it.  I doesn’t hold a lot but if you use the oven as a warmer you can get around that.  Large families may want to look for more capacity

Unlike every other fryer I’ve seen, this one has a tilted, revolving, basket.  The well holds about half the usual amount of oil and the revolving basket dips only a portion of the food into the oil at a time.  Because the basket and the well are tilted, the oil covers the food only at the bottom of the circle.  It seems to work well.

Tonight we had an all fried dinner-shrimp breaded with panko, onion rings breaded with some stale bread crumbs, and broccoli tempura.  Everything came out nicely and the big baking sheet with wire rack was perfect at keeping everything warm in a 200 degree oven.

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Mmm…Onion Rings

Mrs J and I went to the grocery store after dealing with the downed trees, I was needing a refill from the in store pharmacy and Mrs J was just wanting to get out of the house.  In the produce aisle I noticed they had some sweet onions bagged up.  Alas, they weren’t the famous Vidalias-some Texas brand I haven’t seen before but we bought a bag.  They are just Ok, the rings were not as fat as with Vidalias but the flavor was fine.  In the way that supermarkets have they also displayed some batter mix for frying the rings and I bought a packet.  We fried up one of the onions to have with the steaks and potatoes.  The rings were good, very good, actually.  I wanted to have rings again soon so I went to the Google and first up on the page was this recipe.  I noticed right away the five stars, and also took note of the huge number of reviews and the even larger number of people who had saved the recipe to their own files.  I gave it a whirl this morning, Mrs J having gone in to the shelter and it being just a bit too cool to enjoy any outside work.  And I’m lazy.

I’m going to declare right now that those five stars were well earned, this is the best batch of onion rings I have ever cooked and I can’t recall any better rings anywhere.

I tossed some stale white bread into the food processor and reduced it to fine crumbs.  The recipe doesn’t call for any seasoning beyond the teaspoon of salt, and I stayed true to the text this time but I imagine some cayenne would work in this, and certainly fresh ground black pepper would.

[Edit] I notice upon a reread that the recipe calls for the fried rings to be sprinkled with seasoned salt-an excellent idea.  They were good with just some ground kosher salt.


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Mmm…Fried Mushrooms

I bought some fresh mushrooms the other day, used a few in a stir fry but the rest were slowly going brown on me, I needed to “use em or lose em”.  Well, shucks, ma’am, batter frying is an easy way to use up stuff.  If nothing else, the doggies can be persuaded to help eat some.  (Mrs J is not a fan of fungi.)

Batter was 1 cup flour, 1 egg, and 1 cup water.  There are better batters out there but this one is simple and easy and works well enough.  The dip in the bowl is the last of a sweet chili sauce.  I’ll have to remember to restock next trip to the Asian grocery.


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Mmm…Fried Fish

Decided that mowing was an option, got about half done.  Don’t know how I managed without an iPod.  Listening to podcasts from Starship Sofa.  It’s pretty much a science fiction fanzine, fact articles, genre history, and short stories.  I like it.  iTunes carries it, a free weekly download, recommended if you like that sort of fiction.  Yeah, I have music on there, and some audio books, mysteries and such.  Came in starvin, decided to use up the batter I used earlier for the onion rings.  Had plenty enough left for a few pieces of fish.  The batter is the Long John Silver’s recipe. Close enough to it to make me no difference.


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Fish ‘n’ Chips

Had some cod left over from the other day, so I thawed it for this classic-with a twist.  Yup, actual homemade chips.

This is another time my dandy slicer gadget came in handy.  Made the slaw with it, too.  Deep frying these chips was a challenge in that too long in the hot oil they will get too brown (or burn), not long enough and they aren’t very crisp.  I set the thickness for 3mm for these because I wanted some body along with the crispy.  I test fried several slices before I was happy enough to go with the rest.  With the oil at 350+ it took several batches of 8-10 slices each to use up the 3 smallish yellow potatoes I used.  Keep the finished chips in a 200 oven-use a paper lined baking tray.

I Googled around to find a batter and this recipe came up and caught my eye, it worked really well and I can recommend it.

I have fun making tartar sauce, manage to get it a little different every time.  Started with mayo, and added some chopped capers, finely diced onion, sweet relish, lemon juice, chopped parsley, and chopped stuffed green olives.

The slaw was pretty straightforward:  Cabbage, red bell pepper, onions, and some grated carrots.  Dressing was rice wine and apple cider vinegars, a little peanut oil, salt and pepper.  Let the slaw and the tartar sauce age for an hour or more in the fridge for best results, of course you can use them right away if time presses.


Orange Chicken

You have all seen this in the Chinese buffets.  I’m not going to copy and paste the recipe, click here to see it. I wanted to try it to see if I could do at least as well as the average buffet.  I think it came out fabulous!  First I assembled the sauce and the batter, and cut some chicken breasts into rough cubes.  First problem I ran into was the question of flour measure: how many tablespoons of flour in an ounce?  Google says two level tablespoons is an ounce, more or less.  Yay!  Or not!  I just kinda went by eye-looked at the batter and dumped and stirred until it looked right to me.  Alas, maybe too thick. You be the judge:Anyway, I pressed ahead.  Minced the garlic and the ginger and tossed it into the hot oil, added the red peppers, glanced at the recipe…ack!  The orange zest!  Where’s the zester thingy?  The orange? Quick!LOL-do as the recipe says, not as I did.  Burning the garlic like that will get you run off from a good kitchen!  LOL, good thing it’s my kitchen.  Pressing ahead…Dump the chicken and the orange sauce in and stir it all around to get the sauce on the chicken, it will thicken fast as the heat comes up.  Smelling real nice right then.  Sprinkle with some sesame seeds if you have ’em.