Hotdogs & Enchiladas For Danish Boys

My DCM’s friends wanted hotdogs too when they learned I’d made him hotdogs for dinner (T’was A ‘Hotdogs & Salad’ Kinda Day) so I offered to make them some over the weekend. Danish boys seem to love hotdogs.

I’m not going to expound on hotdogs here as I’ve already done so in T’was A ‘Hotdogs & Salad’ Kinda Day.

Prior to plans for making hotdogs, I was initially going to make some Mexican for my DCM and since I was sure that hotdogs alone would not be enough to feed hungry Danish boys, enchiladas would accompany hotdogs on our dinner table.

My sour cream looks blue here...

My DCM loves Mexican. And what my DCM enjoys eating, he gets. I’ve only made variations of burritos and quesadillas as well as chilli con carne so far. Enchiladas are something I’ve been meaning to make for some time now but they’ve somehow always eluded me. I am glad that spell is broken.

Enchiladas are not difficult to make; just a little messy and more work . Purists will want to hail stones at me but I think they can be anything you would like them to be. Living in Singapore it’s not easy to find traditional Mexican produce. Ancho chillies and all the good Mexican stuff are not readily available on supermarket shelves. Some of the canned and bottled stuff I’m wary of so I made the best with what i could and didn’t do a traditional Enchilada. I did them Gg=style! We had also been out all afternoon so I was a little knackered (especially after walking home from GWC carrying heavy groceries since we didn’t want to wait in a long line for a cab when our apartment is only walking distance away). I wanted to cook something that was easy, fast yet good. And it was very good as well as stress-free. Get recipe here.

I will do my best to attempt a more traditional version one day soon. No promises though. My version is too easy and delicious.

It was an extremely satisfying and filling dinner. Everyone was happy and full. Danish boys really do love hotdogs.

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Gg’s Chinky Salmon with Chinky Stir-fried Vegetables & Rice

Marinated salmon, grilled in the oven is served with steamed rice and some very simply fried vegetables. The vegetables are quickly stir-fried while the salmon grills making this fuss-free meal that will still impress. I cooked the salmon all the way through this time as we were having it with rice.

Gg’s Chinky Salmon Recipe:
(serves 2)

Ingredients

  • 2 thick salmon fillets

  Marinade:

  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons hoisin sauce
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 2 tablespoons sake
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 2 garlic cloves (finely minced)
  • few sprigs of cilantro (roughly chopped)
  • few sprigs of spring onions (roughly chopped)
  • 4 – 5 slices of sliced old ginger
  • 1 medium fresh red chilli (sliced) or 1/2 teaspoon dried chilli flakes (optional)
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground white pepper

Directions

  Marinating:

  1. Combine all marinade ingredients in a ziplock bag or container. Mix well.
  2. Add salmon to marinade. Coat well.
  3. Refrigerate overnight or up to 3 days.

  Cooking:

  1. Pre-heat oven on the conventional cooking setting () at 200 degrees Celsius.
  2. Lay a piece of baking paper on a metal rack placed on a baking tray.
  3. Take salmon out of the fridge, remove from marinade and pat dry.
  4. Arrange on baking paper and place in the oven on the second rack from the top. Switch the oven to the fan assisted grilling setting ().
  5. Cook for 15 – 20 minutes depending on the thickness of the salmon and how well done you like it.

 

Gg’s Chinky Stir-fried Vegetables Recipe:
(serves 2)

Ingredients

  • 1 big broccoli (divided into bite-sized florets)
  • 6 fresh shitake mushrooms (sliced)
  • 1 handful cherry tomatoes
  • 12 small prawns (peeled and deveined)
  • 2 garlic cloves (roughly minced)
  • 5 tablespoons vegetable oil

  Seasoning:

Directions

  1. Combine chicken stock, soya sauce, mirin and sesame oil in a small bowl.
  2. Heat 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil in a frying pan or wok over a medium fire.
  3. Add shitakes to oil and fry for 2 minutes till cooked through.
  4. Add 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil and garlic. Fry till garlic is light golden and fragrant.
  5. Add the remainder of the oil and broccoli. Toss to coat broccoli in oil. About 1 minute.
  6. Add  cherry tomatoes, prawns and seasoning. Turn the fire up to high.
  7. Toss well. Add a splash of cooking wine once prawns are cooked.
  8. Give it a final toss and serve.

Who Marinates Fish?

I do! And it is awesome!

I am not a fan of cooked salmon. I don’t mind it as sashimi. I can eat A LOT of  smoked salmon or Gravlax. But the moment it’s cooked, YUCK! I want to run away and hide. However my DCM really likes salmon in all its glory, so it stays on my grocery list. It’s also a good source of Omega 3 as well as other unique health benefits.

What’s a girl to do then? Marinate it! Salmon has such a strong flavour it can take almost anything you do to it. I came up with a chinky marinade based on the stuff I had in the kitchen, threw the salmon fillets in and let them soak up the chinkiness for 2 days.

Salmon + Hoisin = Love

To go with the chinky theme, I cooked some rice and fried up some chinky-style vegetables to go with my chinky salmon, cooked in an un-chinky manner. I grilled it in the oven! This is now my new favourite method of cooking fish fillets. No mess, no fuss, no flipping. Always perfect results. See recipe here.

My DCM said the salmon was good and cleaned his plate. And, for the first time I didn’t want to run and hide eating cooked salmon.

I leave you with this quote: “A man is but a mere piece of meat marinated by the juices of his successes” – Anthony Mojarro

Turkish Delights For Deepavali

I love marinating meats, especially chicken (chook). Marinades turn a normal piece of meat into something spectacular! If you just throw a chook into the oven with a little salt and pepper, olive oil; you get dinner. Put together a marinade of lemon juice, Dijon mustard, splash of white wine, trickle of honey, bit of melted butter and of course good ole S&P (salt and pepper), let a whole chook or your favourite chicken parts marinate in the marinade overnight to a week before you chuck it into the oven and you get dinner that makes you go “OMG… Mmmm…”. 

Yes it is more effort. But really, only slightly more. And the rewards are well worth it. I like putting together the marinade first so I may taste and tweak if necessary. Once done, that’s all the extra effort done. 

Since the apartment comes with a mediocre, tiny fridge (provided by the landlord), I am not able to store many things as the freezer portion is so limited. The solution is marinating. Marinades keep meats ‘fresh’ for longer in the chiller section through preservatives like salt, spices and oil.  

So, it was Deepavali and we were staying in. I wanted to make an indulgent yet healthy meal for my DCM. The Parentals recently went to Turkey on holiday and came back with Turkish goodies like apple tea, cheese, cold cuts, figs, honey comb, macadamia nuts, marinated green olives, olive oil infused with black pepper, pistachios, saffron and Turkish chicken spice rub. I’d marinated 3/4 of a fat chook in the Turkish spice rub and a few other ingredients, had organic baby carrots in the fridge and there were those green olives. A trip to Cold Storage (CS) at Great World City (GWC) provided me with all the other ingredients needed to whip up a Turkish-inspired meal. 

A week of marinating allowed the earthy, auburn spice mix to properly permeate the flesh while the lemon’s acidity acted as a tenderiser. I have a technique of oven roasting that always produces perfectly cooked chook (see recipe and cooking method here). The skin, always the most flavourful part, was crispy. The meat was so succulent that there was a pool of chicken juices at the bottom of the plate when we finished the meal. Yes, even the breast meat was juicy.

Gg's Roasted Turkish Chook with Carrot & Cranberry Salad, Cucumber, Mint & Yogurt Sauce/Dip, Turkish Green Olives and Turkish Bread

The salad was fresh, crisp and sweet (see recipe here) while the yogurt sauce/dip was cool, refreshing and zingy (see recipe here). The yogurt sauce/dip cooled the spicy heat of the chicken and the sweetness of the salad balanced the sour tones present in the chicken and the sauce/dip. The Turkish bread I found at GWC’s CS was chewy, slightly dense and great as a vessel for the chook, salad and yogurt sauce’s trip to our mouths.

It was delicious, messy and so satisfying. My DCM and I did not stop eating until everything on the tray disappeared.