Monday, February 20, 2012

Asian Medley: Vietnamese Pho and Korean Pachanga

Our family loves Asian food of any kind so I decided to make an Asian Medley last Friday.
My daughter Jess has been begging me to make Korean Pachanga again.  I first made it almost 2 years ago.  I guess it made quite an impact on one of our family's most picky eaters.

Korean Pachanga or Veggie Pancakes

1 leek
3 scallions
1 small zucchini
1/2 sweet potato
1 jalapeno pepper, diced
6-10 button mushrooms sliced
1 1/2 cup Chana dal flour (an Indian flour made from ground chickpeas, if not available use regular flour)
About 3/4 cup water- just enough to make pancake batter-like consistency

3/4 tsp Nanami Togarashi (Japanese pepper blend)
1 tsp salt

Make julienne strips sweet potato and zucchini.  Chop scallions and leek (don't use tough tops of leek only white and light green parts).  Mix all veggies in a bowl.  In another bowl mix flour, salt, pepper and water until you have a pancake batter-like consistency.  Mix the veggies into batter.  Pour enough oil in a saute pan to cover bottom.  Heat over medium-high heat.  Drop spoonfuls of batter into pan.  Cook until nicely browned about 3-5 minutes per side.  Dip in soy sauce to serve.

Vietnamese Pho Ga

I love Pho, but I didn't have time to boil bones for the broth.  SO this is my quick and simple pho recipe.  Maybe it's not exactly like they make it in Vietnam, but it had all the right flavors and was delicious.

For soup:
64 oz organic chicken broth
4 chicken breasts, thinly sliced
1 inch ginger, finely chopped
1/4 onion, thinly sliced,
2 T fish sauce
1T brown sugar

5 whole cloves, lightly toasted
5 whole anise stars, lightly toasted
1 package rice noodles

For garnish:
2 limes quartered
1-2 Thai chiles, chopped
bunch cilantro
3 scallions, chopped
bunch basil
2 cups beans sprouts
Sriracha sauce (Asian hot sauce) optional

In large stock pot, saute chicken in oil until no longer pink.  Add ginger and onions.  Cook 1-2 minutes until ginger is fragrant.  Add chicken broth.  In separate bowl, soak rice noodles in cold water about 5 minutes.  Drain and rinse.  Add fish sauce and brown sugar to chicken and broth.  Tie toasted cloves and anise in cheesecloth and put in broth.  Let simmer and add the softened noodles.  Serve with fresh garnishes and Sriracha sauce (Unfortunately when I was buying all the ingredients for it I forgot the basil! :(  It's a major flavor in it.  But it was still yummy!)   Make sure broth is very hot as the cool garnishes will lower the temperature.     Enjoy!!

Kathy :)

Friday, February 3, 2012

Asian Style Chicken Noodle Soup

My daughter Jess had a cold last week and the only food that sounded good to her was chicken noodle soup.  I decided to kick up the soup's healing power and give it an Asian flair by adding fresh ginger chunks.
I like this soup because it is quick and easy to prepare, full of healthy ingredients and all my kids gobble it up!

Asian Style Chicken Noodle Soup

4 chicken breasts, cubed
2 1/2 -32 oz containers organic chicken broth
1/2 cup onions
1 stalk celery , chopped
1 carrot, chopped
1 cup potatoes, diced
Parsley, chopped fresh
1 inch piece of ginger root, minced
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp poultry seasoning (or use fresh thyme and rosemary)
salt and pepper to taste
egg noodles
olive oil

Saute the onions, celery, and carrots in a stock pot, until they begin to soften.  Add ginger and garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute.  Add poultry seasoning and salt and pepper. If needed add a little more olive oil.  Then add cubed chicken and cook until no longer pink on the outside, and just beginning to brown.  Pour in broth and bring to a simmer.  Add potatoes and desired amount of egg noodles and cook until tender.  Check the salt and add more if desired.  Garnish with chopped parsley.

Hope you enjoy!  Have a great weekend!