Tag Archives: egg

Pickled Jalapenos

Pickled Jalapenos by The Aimless Cook

Pickled jalapenos are so easy to make, you’ll wonder why you’ve been buying them all this time! Best of all, you can use this recipe for carrots, daikon, or whatever you’re favourite vegetable happens to be. They’re delicious on tacos, nachos, omelettes, or in this case, breakfast tostadas. Try for yourself and discover your own amazing combination!

You will need:

  • 1lb fresh jalapenos, cut into ⅛” slices
  • 1 ½ cups palm vinegar (or any light coloured vinegar)
  • 1 cup water
  • ½ cup sugar

Grab a container large enough to fit the jalapenos, put them in, and set aside.

In a medium saucepan, combine the liquid ingredients and whisk together. Bring to a boil, stirring til the sugar is fully dissolved. Remove from heat, pour over the jalapenos and allow to cool thoroughly. When cool, put in the refrigerator and let sit overnight. That’s it!

Pickled jalapenos are awesome. The pickling tones down the heat and gives them a nice gentle heat. They’re versatile too, as you can use them on almost anything. Check out these amazingly simple breakfast tostadas using just a few everyday ingredients.

  • tostadas (available at the grocery store in the Mexican food section)
  • eggs
  • bacon, chorizo or longonisa
  • shredded cheese
  • fresh cilantro
  • lime juice
  • salsa
  • sour cream or crema
  • pickled jalapenos
  • avocadoes

Use your imagination! You can use whatever you have in the fridge to make a colourful and tasty breakfast that’s a fresh departure from the usual. Have fun in the kitchen!

What do you like to put your pickled jalapenos on?

Scrambled eggs like a BOSS: http://youtu.be/MMtlZ8DEZTo
Salsa & Pico de Gallo vid: http://youtu.be/nfRuI7mbRYk

Zaru Soba Recipe – Easy Japanese Cooking

Zaru Soba Recipe

 

 

 

 

 

Zaru Soba is a cold noodle dish featuring fresh buckwheat noodles and a delicious dipping sauce with additions like finely chopped green onion, grated daikon, wasabi and raw quail egg. This refreshing and healthy dish is perfect for a hot summer day and it’s really easy to prepare.

You will need:

  • soba noodles (dried in bundles or preferably fresh)

For the dipping sauce:

  • 1 cup dashi
  • ¼ cup soy sauce
  • ¼ cup mirin

The rest:

  • 4 quail eggs
  • 1 bunch of green onion (finely chopped)
  • ½ cup shredded daikon
  • fresh wasabi
  • 2 sheets of roasted nori, finely shredded
  • some roasted sesame seeds

Start with a small saucepan of the dashi on medium heat and add the soy sauce and mirin. Heat til the sauce comes to a simmer then let cook for about 5 minutes. Take off the heat and set aside to cool.

Cut a 2-3 inch section from a fresh daikon and peel. Using a Japanese grater or box grater, grate the daikon into a small bowl. Taking the daikon pulp in your hand, gently squeeze the juice and save the pulp. Set aside.

Add the soba noodles to a large pot of unsalted boiling water then turn down to a simmer (don’t cook soba at a rolling boil like Italian pasta). Cook the soba noodles until they are just done. You want them tender, but not al dente and not mushy. As soon as they’re done, strain into a colander in a large bowl and run cold water til the soba is rinsed of all the starch and the water runs clear. When that’s done, drain well and set aside.

Put the sauce into individual dipping bowls and each of the add-on ingredients into small dishes. Start with the grated daikon, then a small serving of wasabi. Carefully take the top off a quail egg and pour off the egg white, keeping the yolk in the bottom half of the shell. Put the quail egg on top of the pile of daikon. Finally, add some finely chopped green onion and you’re ready.

Using chopsticks, take some of the noodles and wrap them around til you have a nice mouthful portion. Gently place on a plate and repeat til you have 3 nice bundles. Finish with some shredded roasted nori and roasted sesame seeds.

To eat, simply add the daikon and green onion to the sauce and mix. If you like, add the quail egg and as much wasabi as you prefer. From there, simply take some noodles, dip them in the sauce and enjoy!

What is your favourite cold dish in the summer?

Loco Moco – Hawaiian Classics

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Loco Moco is a popular Hawaiian comfort food consisting of 4 quintessential elements:

  • steamed rice
  • a hamburger patty
  • a rich brown gravy
  • a fried egg

Served in a bowl or as part of a Hawaiian style plate lunch with macaroni salad, loco moco can tame the most serious hunger. So if you’re ready to take on this hearty Island soul food favourite, let’s get started.

You will need:

  • 1 lb of really good quality ground beef or pork (or a 50/50 mix called ‘aibiki’ in Japanese)
  • soy sauce
  • worcestershire sauce
  • karashi mustard
  • an egg
  • salt & pepper
  • ½ yellow onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • some panko breadcrumbs

for the gravy:

  • a teaspoon of flour
  • 500ml of water
  • 2 tablespoons of red miso
  • soy sauce
  • karashi mustard
  • salt and pepper

for the rice:

  • furikake
  • steamed rice

Start by heating a skillet on medium heat with a tablespoon of oil and gently saute ½ a diced onion and 2 cloves of minced garlic for about 8 minutes until translucent. When that’s done, set aside.

In a large mixing bowl, combine 1 lb of really good quality ground beef with a tablespoon of soy sauce, ½ a tablespoon of worcestershire, ½ teaspoon of karashi mustard (or prepared mustard), an egg and ¼ cup of panko breadcrumbs. Mix really well with your hands and continue to knead, scooping up the meat in your hand, then tossing it back into the bowl.

*This technique is a lot different then when you prepare Western style ground meat. When you knead the meat like this, you are transforming the texture of the meat into a smooth and uniform consistency.

When the meat’s texture is nice and smooth, form into patties making sure that the center is indented. This insures that the outer edges are done at the same time as the middle.

In a hot cast iron skillet, cook the patties for 3-4 minutes per side. A flat top is one of the best places to grill a burger since all that contact with the heat source will form a delicious brown crust. When the patties are done take them out and set aside.

Immediately sprinkle some flour to cover the reserved juices from the meat you just cooked and combine them over medium heat til you make a roux. To that, add 2 cups of cold water and whisk until the roux is fully incorporated. Next, add 2 tablespoons of red miso and continue to whisk. By now, your mixture is at a nice boil. Season your gravy with more mustard, soy, worcestershire and s&p to taste. When your gravy has thickened to the desired consistency, set aside.

Now take some freshly steamed rice and sprinkle on your favourite furikake. I love the kind with just nori and sesame seeds since it’s so versatile. If you want to season with some shichimi togarashi for a hint of spice, go for it. Use the rice paddle to cut the seasoning into the rice until combined then get ready to assemble.

To assemble, simple start with a scoop or two of rice, top with the beef patty, ladle on the gravy, then a nice sunny side up fried egg. Finish with more furikake on top then enjoy. There is something to be said when you cut into that egg yolk for the first time and watch it slowly cascade down the rest of the dish, but then again, maybe that moment is just beyond words.

The Onsen Tamago – Japanese Hot Spring Egg

Another egg post. Yes, because eggs are awesome and there are so many wonderful ways to enjoy them. This particular technique is one of my favourites because it produces an unbelievably silky and smooth egg that just barely holds it’s shape. This is the best of poaching without the vinegar water, swirl/no swirl, slotted spoon nonsense. This is the Japanese onsen tamago.

Onsen tamago literally means “hot spring egg”. In onsen towns in Japan, onsen tamago are a popular delicacy and are sold in stores everywhere. These slow cooked eggs take on a unique texture when cooked long and slow in the natural hot springs. As a result, you have a yolk that cooks before the white and is simply sublime. 

All you need:

  • fresh eggs
  • boiling water
  • a thermal container with a lid (or a small beverage cooler)

Very easy to do this. Simply put the eggs in the container and pour in the boiling water (enough to cover the eggs a couple of inches). Put the lid on the container and set a timer for 15 minutes. When the time is up, take your eggs out and you’re ready to use however you like. 

Crack them and they come out in one beautiful piece. There will be a little loose egg white but you can scoop up the egg with a slotted spoon to clean up the presentation. I like to use these eggs in ramen, congee, chili pan mee, bibimbap… need I go on?

onsen tamago at home

The best and most simple way to enjoy an onsen tamago is in a small bowl with dashi, a dash of soy and some chopped green onion. Enjoy!

Eggs, St. Patrick’s Day and My First ChefHangout

Eggs

There is a world of potential inside that perfect shell waiting to be tapped and utilized by someone with loving hands and an inspiration. On the other hand, there are people that want to be reassured that they can crack open a couple of these beauties on a Sunday morning and cook up a familiar favourite with their bacon and coffee. No matter how you look at it, eggs are such a fundamental and necessary ingredient in our daily lives, that is, unless you’re a vegan or something.

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The Momofuku 5:10 egg. Seriously, 5 minutes and 10 seconds. Go figure.

Since my son, Josh had his own omelette episode on The Aimless Cook, I have been thinking about the possibility of doing a mini-series on the subject of eggs. Since then, I have made the scrambled egg episode and I have another omelette show waiting to be edited (the country vs. the classic French style). Personally, my favourite is poached and slow cooked. Since eggs are so prevalent in Asian cooking, I love my yolks soft and runny. There is nothing like digging into bibimbap and experiencing the first breaking of the soft yolk. It’s mesmerizing.

So stay tuned for another great egg episode in the days to come. In that episode, I will be showing you my method of making a slow cooked ‘onsen tamago’ style egg that’s perfect for ramen, juk or just with some dashi, soy and green onion. Simple food is the best, isn’t it? 

St. Patrick’s Day

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This past weekend, we celebrated St. Patrick’s Day by volunteering at the Kingsland Farmers Market pancake breakfast to raise cash and donations for the local Food Bank. I was cooking up a slew of fluffy, delicious pancakes for the masses as our special guests from the Calgary Stampeders served breakfast, signed autographs and had their pictures taken with the fans. It was a great way to spend the morning and we raised over $500 cash and a huge pile of food donations. Thanks to all who volunteered and special thanks to the Calgary Stampeders Football Club for stopping by. Most of all, thanks to you Calgarians for coming to Kingsland Farmers Market, supporting a great cause and sharing a wonderful day with us!

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My First ChefHangout

I have always thought about doing a live version of the show. For many months, I have been thinking of some type of format that would make it different. Would I do a cooking demo? Should I have a live broadcast of Q&A? What would make this compelling? Then one day, I met Joe Saad. 

Joe Saad approached me one day on Google+ and told me about a new site he was starting up called ChefHangout.com. He said it was a new way to experience learning and he was looking for chefs to take part in an inaugural group to launch this venture. Online cooking class via Google Hangouts. I thought, “Why not?”

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Chicken Adobo v2

A couple months later and there I was, teaching my first class to one of my friends from work with her daughter, son-in-law and friend. I wanted my first class to be a simple, tried and true recipe that I couldn’t screw up, so I picked my Chicken Adobo v2 that I did not too long ago for YouTube’s Next Chef. The class went splendidly. I took her through the steps and the technology worked flawlessly, and as we cooked, it was like being in the kitchen with her. We cooked, we drank and in the end, had a wonderful Filipino dinner. 

adobo class

As I write this post, I am thinking about future classes. I have gotten a lot of requests for Thai cooking as well as some tutorials on basic sauces and general knife skills. As time goes on, I’m sure I will have a little somethin somethin for everyone. Visit the site to see what classes I will be hosting in the near future, as well as to check out some of the other great classes hosted by some really talented chefs at ChefHangout.com.

Goat Cheese Scrambled Eggs with Basil Pesto Toast

Eggs are awesome. They are so versatile and incredibly useful that I can never be without them. The tragic thing about them is that they are often treated badly (slaughtered) in many, many recipes. How many times have you been to a hotel breakfast bar and seen the ubiquitous eggs benedict with overcooked poached egg, dry English muffin and powdered Hollandaise? Or the dry slab of ‘scrambled’ eggs that’s been in the steam tray forever? Or even worse, the dreaded scrambled egg that’s been ‘slain’. An overcooked mass lying lifeless in a pool of its own runny liquid. Tragic.

Today I’m gonna show you how to make a beautifully executed scrambled egg with delicious farm-fresh goat cheese and chopped chives on a toasted slice of Banuka Bakery’s own Basil Pesto Bread. These are scrambled eggs the way they are supposed to be enjoyed. Consistently smooth, silky and custard-like, the texture is simply sublime. I truly know you’re in for something special.

You will need:

  • 4 large eggs, beaten
  • 2 tablespoons fresh chives, finely chopped
  • 1 ½ tablespoons goat cheese feta, crumbled
  • salt to taste
  • 2 pieces Basil Pesto bread (available at Banuka Bakery)
  • some butter

Slice the Basil Pesto bread on a bias and toast. Spread butter on each slice and set on the plate. 

Start with a small skillet with a tablespoon of butter on medium heat. In a medium mixing bowl, combine the eggs, goat cheese and half of the chives. Pour the mixture into the heated skillet and stir with a silicone spatula or wooden spoon. Keep stirring over the steady heat and keep it moving. If the eggs cook too fast, simply take it off the burner for a few moments, still stirring. Continue to cook and stir until your eggs reach an even custard-like consistency. Salt to taste and get ready to plate.

*Eggs are very delicate and it takes control and precision to cook them well. They also hold residual heat, so take them off the heat early. The eggs will continue to cook and set on the plate when you serve.

Spoon the eggs on each slice and top with fresh chives. Serve up with sliced fresh tomato and enjoy!

J’s Century Egg Salad Recipe

More than a year ago, I uploaded a vlog about my favourite ‘exotic’ foods. Now this vlog included items such as chicken feet, dinaguan (a Pinoy pork blood stew) and the infamous Balut. Of these wonderful acquired tastes, I also talked about Chinese century eggs. These are duck eggs that have been preserved in a mixture of clay, wood ash, quicklime, salt and rolled in rice husks. They are then left to ‘cure’ for several weeks resulting in a transformation of colour, texture and flavour that is truly unique.

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Now I usually love century eggs in my congee with pork, a little ginger and green onion, but today I’m gonna show you how to enjoy these wonderful flavour-bombs in popular Asian tomato salad that’s healthy, colourful and easy to make. The high notes of the cilantro, fish sauce and citrus compliment the earthy complexity of the century eggs. You’re gonna love this so let’s cook!

You will need:

  • 4 century eggs
  • 2 large tomatoes, cut into wedges
  • 1/2 large red onion, sliced thinly
  • 1 Thai red chile
  • 1 handful fresh cilantro
The dressing:
  • the juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 teaspoon fish sauce
  • 1 teaspoon canola oil

Let’s start by peeling the century eggs and blanching them in boiling water very briefly. This is to get rid of the alkaline smell usually associated with century eggs. Cut into wedges and set aside.

Next let’s prepare the elements of our salad by taking the tomatoes and cut them into wedges. Take the red onion and soak in cold water to mellow out the raw bite. Finally, chop the chile and get ready to assemble.

Now grab yourself a large bowl and let’s start making the dressing. We’re gonna begin by drizzling in about a teaspoon of canola oil followed by about 1 teaspoon of fish sauce and the juice of 1 lemon. From here, add the red onion, the century eggs and a handful of chopped cilantro. Mix well to combine and give it a taste. Add salt to season and any of the other ingredients from the dressing to balance it out. Southeast Asian flavours are always a balancing act and a little fine tuning to our personal taste always makes every batch unique. 

I like to let salads like this sit in the fridge for awhile to let the flavour come together. Alternatively, you can also make the dressing ahead of time so that it’s ready to rock come assembly time. Enjoy this recipe and have fun in the kitchen!

Oyakodon

Oyakodon is a great dish that is very easy to put together when you are craving some authentic Japanese food. Oyako means “mother and child” or in this case, the chicken and egg. I have had this dish before working in the restaurant, but it was always made in a large volume for a group of people. I prefer to prepare this dish in single servings. It turns out much better as you have much more control over the timing of the eggs. Let’s get started.

For the base, you will need:

  • 300 ml dashi
  • 150 ml mirin
  • 100 ml soy sauce
  • a dash of sake (optional)

With this base, you can adjust sweetness with a little sugar. If you have leftover, you can store in the fridge for a couple days.

You will also need:

  • 2 chicken thighs, boneless and skinless, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1/2 medium onion, sliced
  • 1 large egg, beaten

Start with a small skillet (about 10 inches) and heat on med high. Add the chicken and onion, then ladle some of the base into the mixture. When it starts to boil, turn the heat down to med and cover. What you want to do is poach the meat, which won’t take long since its cut so small. After a couple minutes, take the cover off and pour half the egg over the chicken. Put the cover back on and cook for another minute. Now get yourself a bowl of steamed rice ready. After the minute is up, take off the lid and pour the remaining egg on the chicken. Remove from the heat and place on the bowl of rice finishing with some finely chopped green onion. Traditionally oyakodon is served in a lidded lacquered bowl. Once you serve, the lid is put immediately on the bowl and brought to the diner. The remaining egg cooks in the bowl through the residual heat. What you get is a fluffy and custard-like finish with the poached chicken which is just awesome. Enjoy this recipe and have fun in the kitchen!

Goat Cheese Frittata

With Mother’s Day coming up, it’s the perfect opportunity to impress with this simple recipe. Thanks to our friends at Noble Meadows Farms at the Kingsland Farmers Market for these spectacular Heritage chicken eggs and fresh goat’s feta cheese. This is a frittata that I know you will enjoy!

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  • 8 large eggs, beaten
  • ½ yellow onion, diced
  • ½ cup bacon, chopped
  • ½ cup red bell pepper, diced
  • ½ cup potatoes, boiled and diced
  • ½ cup feta cheese, crumbled
  • salt and pepper to taste

 Start with a hot cast iron skillet and add about a Tablespoon of butter. On medium heat, toss in the onion and bacon and cook until the bacon is cooked through. Add the red bell pepper and continue cooking for about one minute.
 
Next, add the eggs and cook on medium heat until the bottom is cooked. You will know by looking at the edges. As the eggs cook, add the feta and distribute evenly. Place the skillet under a high broiler on the middle rack and cook until the top is finished.
 
When your frittata is finished cooking, let stand for a few minutes before serving.

Omurice

The first time I saw Omurice was in a scene from the 1985 Japanese comedy, “Tampopo”. My obsession with Japanese food and culture came from seeing that movie after a bartender I worked with was desperately looking for it. I had to know what was the deal with this obscure foreign film by Juzo Itami. Take a look at the clip and see how easy this looks. It took me a few tries to get the texture of the eggs just right, but when you nail it, its so worth the effort. Some versions of this recipe make the egg into a thin sheet like you’re making Tamagomaki and wrap the rice inside. I like my eggs soft, and seeing that egg slit open on the rice….mmmmm. Let’s cook!

You will need:

  • 1 cup – leftover rice (cold is best)
  • 1 clove – garlic (smashed)
  • ketchup or okonomi sauce
  • 3 eggs
  • salt and pepper
  • oil

Heat some oil in a pan and toss in the garlic. Saute your garlic until aromatic. You can brown the garlic if you like that nutty flavor. Toss in the cold rice and turn up the heat. Break up the clumps with you spatula or rice paddle as you fry it up. When the rice is nearly done, add about a tablespoon of ketchup and blend well with the rice. Once the blending is complete, plate it up and set aside.

Ok, now for the omelette part. Get your pan well oiled or sprayed, whatever you prefer. Turn the heat to high. Beat the eggs and get ready. This part will be quick. Pour the eggs into the pan and stir them up, while shaking up the pan to get the eggs to set on the bottom. As you do the stir-and-shake, the eggs will be a medium soft with the uncooked layer on top. Move the egg to one side of the pan and lightly flick the pan, like you’re gonna flip the eggs over. What you want to do is roll up the omelet so that the soft part is inside. Just look at the clip again to get the idea.

Turn the omelet over onto the hot rice and make a slit along the length so that the soft insides show (I like that part). Season with salt and pepper if you wish and add more ketchup/okonomi sauce on top. Enjoy!

If you want to make this dish a little heartier, you can add whatever leftovers you like to the rice. I’ve done this with cooked chicken, ham, Chinese bbq pork (Char Siu), tofu, veg or whatever you got.