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Dim Sum Style - Black Pepper Beef Short Ribs

Continuing with the Dim Sum series I offer you this version of Black Pepper Beef  Short Ribs for your dining pleasure. The original recipe was found at Woks Of Life and I tweaked it just a bit.

Nothing is more satisfying for me, food-wise, than seeing a cart full of bamboo steamers coming my way atop a dim sum cart. Nothing! And sadly I haven't located good dim sum joint in Prince George so I will continue to make it for the benefit of all in attendance at Snowy Palms. Maybe opening a dim sum food truck in the summer?  Now there's an ass-busting plan! Nahhhhh...

Thankfully in Prince George we have The Chinese Store (that's the name!) to find select Asian ingredients, as well, Serengeti Northern BC offers up hard to find items.  The local supermarkets do a good job of it also, so if you are so inclined, and you want to make dim sum, visit these fine stores.  If you live in a bigger center like Edmonton or Vancouver you have a myriad of sources to locate the needed ingredients such as T&T Markets.


So go find some steamers and pantry ingredients and follow along.


1 lb  beef short ribs, Maui/Korean/Argentinian cut, -trimmed of any gristle or silver skin, cut into single rib pieces

1 onion, thin sliced

Marinade:

¼ tsp baking soda
½ tsp sugar
¼ tsp Chinese 5 spice powder
1 Tbsp dry sherry or sake
2 tsp light soy sauce
 
1 tsp dark soy sauce
1 tsp oyster sauce
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 clove garlic, pressed

Add just before steaming:

1 tsp sesame oil
1 Tbsp cornstarch or tapioca starch
1 tsp freshly ground/cracked black pepper (coarse grind)

Place all above marinade ingredients into a plastic or glass container and mix well.

Add the ribs and onion to the bowl and toss to coat evenly, ensure the ribs have all met the marinade. Cover and place in fridge overnight.


When ready to cook, take the ribs out of the refrigerator, add the sesame oil, cornstarch, and freshly ground black pepper. Mix well, set aside for 1 hour to come to room temperature

Place the ribs in heat-proof bowl then place into the steamer, cover and steam for 10 minutes.
 

Stir the ribs then cover and steam for another 10 minutes.



At 20 minutes, check to see if the ribs are cooked through and the sauce has thickened up.  If you prefer very tender ribs, then steam for an additional 20 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes.

Once cooked to your liking, remove from the steamer and serve in small dim sum size plates.

Serve hot.

Note: These can be cooked well in advance and kept in the fridge, when ready to eat, simply reheat them in  a steamer and serve…

Snowy Palms Resort

Dim Sum Style - Steamed Black Bean Pork Ribs


Since moving away from Edmonton and a few great dim sum restaurants (Jumbo, Cha For Tea to name just 2) I have had to resort to making my own dim sum again.  It is easy enough but when I want dim sum I like to be able to yell at the family to "Get your coats on, I'm hungry!" and jump in the car. Now when I desire dim sum, some advance planning is required, it's delicious, but planning has never been my strong suit. Anyway, here's my version of black bean pork ribs.

This is a common dish and a million similar recipes exist in the food blogosphere, so here is my addition to the recipe box.


1 pound pork ribs, sweet and sour cut (about 1" pieces)

1 Tbsp dry sherry or sake

2 tsp sugar
1 tsp salt
1 tsp sesame oil
1/2 tsp white pepper
2 Tbsp cornstarch
1 Tbsp water
2 Tbsp minced hot pepper (green or red, or both!)
2 Tbsp fermented black beans - rinsed, drained, set aside



Mix all ingredients together and place in a container with a tight-fitting lid.  Refrigerate for 4 hours, overnight is best however.

Once ribs have marinated sufficiently, place into a heatproof bowl the correct size to allow it to fit into a steamer.

Bring 1 quart of water to a boil, then place the steamer rack over the water then place the rib mixture.

 
Steam for 10 minutes, give the ribs a stir then cover and steam for an additional 10 minutes.

The ribs are ready when they are opaque and a thickened sauce has developed.  If any pink remains steam for an additional 10 minutes. I will often steam them for 40 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes to get them very tender.

Serve in the steaming bowl or transfer to smaller dim sum size plates for service.
I love the ribs over steamed jasmine rice or fried noodles. Yummy!




Enjoy! 



Hashbrowns!!!



I love hashbrowns (one word). By hashbrowns I mean the shredded potato kind and not the diced potato kind, those I call pan fried potatoes. Get it? Not the brown hash either that was a popular form of cerebral recreation in my youth, cause that would have been wrong, not to mention illegal, so I would never have done that. Nor would I have sampled Maui-Wowie, Thai stick, BC Bud, Red Devil or any other form of said hallucinogenic farm produce. Nope, hashbrown potatoes are what I am talking about here. It's 2011 for goodness sake, not Vancouver circa 1976.

There are some notable restaurants that serve the delectable and tasty shredded hashbrown potatoes I crave. The hashbrowns I like the best are made at restaurants that I would not ordinarily go to for any meal other than breakfast with shredded hashbrowns, those breakfast restaurant style hashbrowns are what I sought to duplicate.

As kids my folks made hashbrowns grated fresh and then soaked the grated potatoes in ice-cold water, rinsing repeatedly to remove as much starch as possible, then pan frying with butter until golden brown then flipping over to brown them and serve hot. So yummy my mouth is watering at the jaw as I type this. The problem with this method is even with all the rinsing and soaking, the cooked hashbrowns could be gluey and Lord knows gluey hashbrowns are an abomination and a sin against the revered potato. I would still eat them when they were gluey, but the enjoyment threshold is right there with sex as a solitary activity and there are better ways to do this as some glorious breakfast restaurants can exhibit, hashbrowns, not sex that is.

I suffered with the gluey hashbrown syndrome for years, until, after a myriad of failed but edible experiments, I developed my family favourite and Sunday brunch signature hashbrowns. I will detail the process here since we are all friends and I know you won't tell too many people because I would like it to be kept secret. But first there is an item you need to find. It can be difficult to locate but when you do the search effort will bear years of wonderful hashbrowns to enjoy. The item is a Salad King food processor. A mechanical thingy that works like a charm and the one I proudly own is as old as I am (please hold the old guy jokes). I stole mine from my parents, though I have denied it for many years, so please don't tell them. They left the house one evening and I ran out the door with it under the cover of darkness. It's mine now and I will not give it up. Ever! Never! Ha!!!!

I have used stand graters, mandolines and electric food processors of varying origins and none compare to the indomitable Salad King (also known as King Cutter) hand crank food processor/grater. It has shredded/grated tons of potatoes, beets, carrots and other hard vegetables and performed flawlessly with nary a complaint. Originally it came with a guard over the cutting drum to protect fingers but unfortunately the guard has gone the way of the Dodo bird so I grate unprotected, dangerously unprotected. The only thing between my fingers and a steady bleed is a scream, so after losing a few pounds of flesh to the procedure that is grating with an unguarded Salad King, I have learned to pay attention. Very close attention, and have not added any personal protein to any food preparation for a very long time. If you get a chance make sure the Salad King you steal has a guard if at all possible. (You can buy them off Etsy if you so desire)

Now on to the potatoes and enough of my mind droppings...

Shredded Hashbrown Potatoes

Peel 2 large potatoes for each person you are going to amaze with these hashbrowns. I always use russets, I don't know why, but I do and they are very good. Place the peeled potatoes, uncut (that's whole in case you are confused) in a large 12 quart or larger pot or dutch oven and cover the WHOLE potatoes with cold water, enough so the potatoes end up loosely gathered, floating almost.

Place pot on the stove over high heat. Bring the pot to a full rolling boil and once boiling, boil for 2 minutes - not 3, not 1, but 2 minutes. Remove pot from heat then let stand at room temperature uncovered for 2-3 hours, until cooled to room temperature. Remove potatoes from water and chill. Note: I always do this the day before I am planning to serve hashbrowns ensuring they chill properly, so you should do so as well.

Using the chilled potatoes, grate and place in a bowl. Toss with salt and pepper. At this point I add the minced red bell pepper, green onions or chives and pressed garlic, lots of everything, kind of like an O'Brien potatoes it is. Toss the mixture well with a little canola oil and begin to make some goodness.


Using a large non-stick frying pan placed over high heat add some butter (clarified is best) and canola oil in a 50/50 ratio (the amount is up to you, but I like lots, perhaps 3 tables spoons of each).
 

Add grated potato mixture to the hot oil and reduce heat to medium. Season with salt and pepper.

DO NOT stir potatoes. Let them lay still, unmolested, until they gently brown. Check the colour by lifting and looking, and once browned to your liking flip over and brown the other side.

 Helpful hint!: Place a plate over the cooking hashbrowns then with your hand on the plate, turn the frying pan over to release the hashbrowns.


Slide half-cooked hashbrowns back into the frying pan and cook until golden brown.

At this point you have a decision to make - to stir, or not to stir.  I stir to get more golden crunchy goodness happening, but you don't have to. If you wish, simply plate the cooked hashbrown patty and serve. It's your choice!  Be daring!

Fry until they are golden brown and serve hot.

You can keep the cooked hashbrowns in the oven until the eggs are done, just ensure the oven is at 400 degrees so they don't wilt, and don't keep them waiting longer than 10 minutes. Hashbrowns hate to be kept waiting. Trust me.

Serve hot and enjoy.


The picture below is my Salad King in front of a pile of freshly grated potatoes prior to being turned into delectable and hugely satisfying hashbrowns.



The simple secret to this is the parboiling of the potatoes. By doing this you set the starch in the potato and the cooking time decreases by half, so no gluey hashbrowns for you; they taste nice and light and they cook quickly.

If you happen to be participating in a brown hash experience, remember when the munchies hit, the quick cooking and tasty hashbrowns may be better for you than a bag of Doritos or a box of Oreo cookies. Just be careful that you don't step on the miniature Unicorns or the tiny House Hippo's when you are traipsing around the kitchen cooking these in a hallucinogenic state. They're endangered creatures after all and they come out when hashbrowns and brown hash are coupled together in a kitchen.

Snowy Palms Resort

Figgy Pudding - Snowy Palms Style



It is hard for me to understand why normal and intelligent people of sound reasoning would eat dried fruit, which we must all agree, is fruit picked and packaged just short of it rotting on the vine or tree. Raisins and prunes are vile gag inducing things that in nature would be reduced to topsoil if they weren't picked and wickedly sold as "good for you" snacks to the gullible among us.

Not content to leave well enough alone, there are those of equally questionable judgement or intelligence that take other fruits - good, edible and tasty fruits, then intentionally desiccate them and serve them up as snacks and or energy food to others of questionable intelligence. It is madness pure and simple.

With the above in mind I have always shied away from Christmas Pudding, Christmas-Gag-Me-With-A-Fruit-Cake (which also includes Wedding Cake), along with cinnamon buns, cakes and cookies that harbour or even potentially harbour little dried bits of pre-rotted fruit waiting to send my swallower into full reverse should I accidentally try to ingest one or more of them. Sadly, people do try to trick me by lying in telling me that the little-bitty things in the baked good they placed in front of me are pieces of walnut or pecan (which I love). Tricksters! Liars! Evil-doers all!!! I maintain vigilance always on matters of dried fruit and I always will, you can not easily get that stuff past my lips. Figgy Pudding was also included in my avoidance.

So it was with much trepidation that I sampled some Figgy Pudding at one of Prince George's best restaurants, North 54. After being cajoled and berated into submission by those around me to "Oh for goodness sake, TRY IT" - I was drinking Hester Creek at the time and my resistance was weak, I ordered it and I liked it. It did not turn the private dining room into a vomitorium, which I must say was my expected outcome and one I was preparing for, instead, I consumed the entire offering and then set out to bring a version of it to Snowy Palms Resort's kitchen that would not induce a gag reflex in anyone that hates dried fruits and the recipe below was the outcome. Tres yummy. Tres, tres yummy...

The difference is that the figs and dates are blended to a puree thus eliminating the potential adverse outcome of attempted ingestion of a swallower-blocking dried fruit nugget in hiding.

I Give You Figgy Pudding

14 large, dried figs (I use Turkish figs)
10 dried dates
1 ½ cups water
½ tsp baking soda
½ cup dark rum
¼ cup brandy
1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
3 tsp baking powder
1 tsp cinnamon
½ tsp ginger powder
¼ tsp nutmeg
pinch ground cloves (optional)
½ tsp salt
2 cups graham cracker crumbs
½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted (or use canola oil - same, same)
1 Tbsp lemon zest
½ cup chopped toasted walnuts (optional)
½ cup raisins (optional) why anyone would add these is beyond me...

8 - 1 cup ovenproof ramekins

Sauce
2 cups brown sugar
2 cups heavy cream
1 tsp cinnnamon
3 Tbsp butter

Preheat oven to 350˚ F


Whisk together the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cloves and salt; set aside.


Place the figs, dates, baking soda, and water in a saucepan; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover pot and simmer for 10 minutes.

Add the rum and brandy to the boiled figs and dates. Bring to a boil, then immediately remove from heat. Set pot aside and let cool to room temperature, then puree with a blender (immersion or countertop).

Beat the eggs, vanilla and brown sugar until they are thoroughly blended.

Then mix in the graham cracker crumbs, melted butter (or oil), fig puree and lemon zest, then lastly add the dry ingredients you have waiting from procedure above.

Now would be a good time to add the nuts and/or raisins if using.

Pour the finished mixture into 8 buttered and floured individual ramekins. Place ramekins in a high-sided baking tray and add hot water to bring the water level to half way up the ramekins (it is now a water bath method).

Place tray in preheated oven, bake for 25 to 35 minutes or thereabouts (your oven may vary time required). Now is a good time to start making the sauce.

Test with toothpick or thin blade knife to ensure they are fully cooked.

Remove the ramekins from the oven and let cool for 10 minutes. Once cool enough to handle run a small knife around the edge to release the puddings from the ramekins then turnout the now emancipated puddings onto a cooling rack as you prepare the serving plates.

Note: One is not like the other in the picture below.  The ones on the left were baked in the water bath with buttered and floured ramekins, the ones on the right were baked in the oven as normal, not in a water bath as a test - they failed. SO USE A WATER BATH!

Prepare the sauce by stirring the sugar, cream and cinnamon in a saucepan over medium-low heat, bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes.

Remove from heat then add the butter and stir until incorporated.

Pour a little sauce onto the center of each serving plate, place pudding onto sauce, then pour more sauce over the puddings. Top with whipped cream. Serve warm.

Christmas Cake?  Wedding Cake? Never! Never! Never!

Snowy Palms Resort Facebook Page

He's In The Kitchen And He Has A knife! - A cookbook, a love story, a confession..


You came here looking for a copy of the long rumoured cookbook from Snowy Palms Resort?

It is in edit somewhere between nowhere and  nearly-there.

Check back often, it will arrive here, or there, or at Amazon.ca - one can never tell....

  
The first 2 orders will receive a legitimately original signed copy if we can get Lazy Bastard to calm the DT's and render something resembling a human penned signature.  Handwritten pithy prose in the signature copies will cost a modest few extra baubles.... 

Please visit the Snowy Palms Resort Facebook page..

The stories about Snowy Palms goings-on are all posted to the Facebook page.  Please drop by and have a read and a head shake. Click on the link below










See you there...

Teriyaki Chicken Legs or Wings



This recipe is a hand-me-down from my mother.  Back when the Earth was still cooling chicken wings were available at the butcher shop for a very modest price and as such we at them frequently. My mother cooked them up in quantities that could and did feed an army, and many of my friends became as addicted to them as I was - leftover teriyaki chicken wings were a particular hit with the high school lunch crowd in fact, (they went really well with the frozen oatmeal cookies she hid in the deepest recesses of our freezer chest).

We enjoyed chicken wings for years due to their reasonable cost (which complimented our lack of money) and the wonderfulness of Mom's teriyaki recipe, then came the Buffalo Chicken Wing frenzy. It turned an inexpensive meal into an occasional expensive treat, and for the most part chicken wing prices are still high due to the high demand the wing frenzy created and the fact no enterprising farmer has developed a 12 winged chicken. Come on farmers!  There must be a 12 winged chicken lurking about in the lab at Monsanto's skunkworks that they'd be willing to cross breed with your Rhode Island Red!!! WE NEED CHEAPER WINGS!

As chicken wings climbed in price I was determined to find an alternative, a TASTY alternative, and chicken legs climbed to the top of the teriyaki list. As it turns out, legs are better for you on the fat to meat ratio and taste great too!

The size of chicken legs in the market have shrunk to the size of the wings of old (eaten at a KFC lately?) and they do nicely in a pool of teriyaki marinade as well as satisfying my wing craving - mostly. I have also used this for turkey wings, affectionately labeled Teriyaki Pterodactyl Wings and is that a mouthful, literally...
Teriyaki Pterodactyl Wings

Teriyaki Pterodactyl Wings

Teriyaki Chicken Legs Recipe


3 cups white wine
2 cups soy sauce
10 cloves crushed garlic
3 Tbsp grated ginger (fresh preferred or2 Tbsp ginger powder)
1/3 cup brown sugar (You can use Mirin in place of brown sugar for a real taste treat)
2 Tbsp Chili garlic paste
2 Tbsp sesame oil

In a plastic or stainless steel bowl mix all ingredients together.  Add meat and refrigerate for at least 8 hours, however overnight (24 hours) is best.
Once the chicken or beef or pork has marinated overnight, drain off liquid and place the meat on a baking tray.

Roast in 375° oven.

5 lbs chicken wings: cook 30 minutes, remove tray from oven, drain off liquid and turn over the wings, return tray to oven for 10 minutes longer.

5 lbs (20) chicken legs: Cook as with chicken wings, turn over at 15 minutes and cook for 15 minutes until golden brown.


Beef: cook (roast or grill) as preferred

Pork: cook (roast or grill) to well done (170° internal temperature)


Snowy Palms Resort