Posts Tagged ‘chinese’

Wild Honey Egg Eggplant

Here’s my recipe for the Pacific Coast Farmers’ Market Association’s first #myPCFMAplate recipe competition mentioned in the previous post. This is a variation of Chinese eggplant chili garlic sauce using ingredients from the Downtown San Leandro Farmers’ Market. Except for the rice and soy sauce, all ingredients in this dish are regularly available when the market runs from April to October. Cremini mushrooms were used to add earthiness. Araucana chicken eggs, which are smaller and with a blue-green tinge not seen with most store-bought eggs, were used for protein since beef is the only occasional meat at the San Leandro market. Plus my girlfriend wants to eat less animals, especially pork. Wild honey from local beekeepers was the sweetener instead of the sugar seen in most similar recipes. For those who want meat, I suggest adding two Chinese sausages (lap chong), or ground pork, at around the same time the initial ingredients go into the pan. This recipe also allows for different amounts of gravy, depending on preference. 

Ingredients

1 onion

Half a garlic bulb

20 red Thai chili peppers

2 tablespoons ginger

4 Chinese eggplant

10 Cremini Mushrooms

3 tablespoons soy sauce

5 Araucana chicken eggs

3 tablespoons honey

3 sprigs basil

5 cups rice

2-4 cups water

*Feeds four

Directions

Wild Honey Egg Eggplant

Start cooking the rice in a rice cooker, simmering in a pot or whatever your preference.

Chop the onion, garlic, chili peppers, and ginger. Leave a handful of chilis on the side for garnish.

Heat a large pan with oil to high heat and add those ingredients, adding half to three-quarter cups of water at a time to prevent burning. 

After a few minutes, add the eggplant, mushrooms and soy sauce. Cover the pan and lower the heat to medium so they simmer together. Continue adding water as needed.

Wild Honey Egg Eggplant

When mushrooms and eggplant are half to three-quarters done to your liking, add eggs and scramble them. This will thicken the liquid. Continue adding water to your liking, making a sauce for the rice.

Wild Honey Egg Eggplant

Just before serving, chop and sprinkle basil, add the honey and turn off the heat. Leave some leaves aside for garnish.

Serve over rice, garnishing with remaining basil leaves and whole chili.

 

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Happy Chinese Lunar New Year!

I’m happy to also say I recently finished a video production certificate from the Bay Area Video Coalition, learning the basics of operating cameras, sound, lighting, editing and producing a final product. It was paid for through the California Training Benefits/Workforce Investment Act to help displaced workers from when I got laid off as a newspaper reporter at the Contra Costa Times.

In thinking about the end to the year of the snake, which happens to be my sign, I realized the value of laying low. It was a tough year for many around me, and there were higher expectations in the post-2012 apocalypse. But like the snake, you can overcome limitations by being set up for big things to happen, and striking when the opportunity arises. Besides the video program and working in journalism in ways I never imagined, including shooting for an internationally broadcast TV station, this year also brought other opportunities to look forward to in the next year. I picked up more work as a fine food catering waiter to fill the gaps of being a freelance journalist, and became a bartender. I started playing in a band again, and have a lot of other things going that I don’t want to jinx. I’m also glad to just be here, as just making it to the next day is an accomplishment for the opportunities of tomorrow.

With that we ride into 4712, the year of the horse.

century.egg by eric.louie
century.egg, a photo by eric.louie on Flickr.

Duck egg crostini

This is my own idea, inspired by my girlfriend at 18. She grew up in Taiwan and liked to mix preserved Chinese duck eggs, which also go by names like pei daan and century eggs, with tofu, soy sauce and sesame seed oil. I don’t remember what we put it on originally, but I added the crostini and green onions part. The idea is to mix tastes like salt, the nuttiness of the sesame oil and freshness of green onions, along with textures like soft tofu and crunchy toasted bread.

The eggs, widely available at Asian stores, are traditionally preserved by being covered with alkaline clay. Today there’s new methods.

Ingredients

  • Two century eggs
  • One package soft tofu
  • Three teaspoons soy sauce (adjust to taste)
  • One teaspoon sesame seed oil (adjust to taste)
  • A couple green onions for topping
  • Two to three rustic French baguettes. This makes a lot.
  • A bit of olive oil

 

Directions

  • Crack and peel the eggs. Chop them into small pieces and put in a bowl. The preserving process makes the whites turn black and gel. It may have a slight sulphur smell, but that’s normal, and they didn’t go bad. Remember, they’re preserved.
  • Mix in soft tofu.
  • Add sesame seed oil.
  • Add soy sauce.
  • Mix together and let sit.
  • Chop the green onions.
  • Slice the baguettes. Coat with olive oil and toast.
  • After toasted, put on the egg mixture.
  • Top with green onions and serve.