Theresa and Bryan's Cuisinistry

Our favorite hot sauce in the world comes from our local Vietnamese sandwich shop, Les Givrals in midtown. We found a recipe on how to make it from Viet World Kitchen (here), which involving frying shallots, lemongrass, garlic, dried chili, and fresh thai chili at low heat to bring out the fragrance, and finished some fish sauce and sugar (we skipped the MSG and the sriracha).

This sauce is literally good on everything, from spring rolls to chicken wings to fried rice, but one of our favorites is based on an appetizer commonly served in Chinese and Taiwanese restaurants, simply toss the sauce with some dried tofu (tofu gan), soy paste (or regular soy sauce), cilantro, and garnish with some roasted crush peanuts. Definitely one of the best low carb (and vegetarian if you skip the fish sauce in the hot sauce) dish we’ve ever made!

#hot sauce  #vietnamese  #Taiwanese  #Chinese  #tofu  #lemongrass  #garlic  #spicy  #low carb  #vegetarian 

One more Taiwanese dish that is quick to make and a personal favorite of mine: Three cup chicken. The name “three cup” comes from the seasoning used: one cup soy sauce, one cup sesame oil, and one cup rice wine. What really makes the dish though, is the ample amount of garlic, ginger, and fresh basil.  Here is the recipe:

2 pounds of chicken, cut into large bite-sized pieces (boneless skinless chicken thighs are the easiest and used here, but when I’ve had it in Taiwan it’s usually chopped up bone-in drumstick pieces). I like to blanche it for just a couple of minutes in a pot of boiling water (especially when using bone-in pieces), but that’s optional.

In addition to the chicken, the ingredients are in the picture above: 1/4 cup of light soy sauce (plus just a dash of dark soy sauce for color, if desired), 1/4 cup of Chinese rice wine (the clear type, not shaoxing wine), 1/4 cup of good quality sesame oil, a tablespoon of sugar (or substitute splenda for low carb), about 15 cloves of garlic (half smashed, half remained whole), 20 pieces of sliced ginger, a couple dried chili peppers (optional), and a cup of fresh basil. 

In a cast iron or stainless steel pan, add the sesame oil, the ginger, garlic, and sugar, and cook for 5 minutes, infusing the flavor into the oil (a splash of water would help dissolve the sugar if needed). Then add the chicken and pepper and saute for 5 more minutes or so, until the chicken is cooked. Deglaze with the soy sauce and rice wine and cook until the alcohol is cooked out (2-3 minutes). Finally, add the fresh basil, cook for one minute, then turn the heat of. Stir until the basil is wilted. Serve with steamed rice or on a bed of Chinese or regular water spinach (since we are doing low carb).

#Taiwanese  #Chinese  #chicken  #low carb  #ginger  #garlic  #basil  #sesame 

A great low carb recipe: 44-clove garlic soup from Smitten Kitchens (found here), using both roasted and boiled garlic. We made some as-is for lunch, and thickened up the rest of the soup by boiling down some of the liquid (before adding the cream) and used it as a sauce for roast chicken. 

#low carb  #soup  #chicken  #lunch  #dinner  #garlic 
Porthouse steak, simply grilled with salt and pepper, and garlic braised greens, which is modeled after the version from one our favorite restaurants (Just a Taste in Ithaca, NY), with garlic, sherry vinegar, bleu cheese, tomatoes, and walnuts. The walnut complements well the nuttiness of the greens, and the acid from the sherry vinegar stands up well to the bitterness of the greens and cuts through the richness from the blue cheese. It’s a nice alternate preparation from the traditional bacon and onion collard greens preparation. Our version of the dish is as follows:
Ingredients:
1 lb of fresh kale, collard greens, swiss chard, mustard greens, or a mixture of different kinds, the stems removes and leaves chopped into medium-sized pieces 
4 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
1 tablespoons of olive oil
1/4 cup of sherry vinegar
2 tomatoes
1 handful of chopped walnuts
handful of blue cheese (any kind, we usually use gorgonzola), crumbled
salt and pepper
Steps:
Heat the olive oil over medium heat, add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds.
Add the leaves of the greens and the sherry vinegar, season with salt and pepper.  Close the lid and cook for until the leaves are al dente, about 10 minutes, adding a little water if needed.
Add the chopped tomatoes and walnuts, and cook for another 1-2 minutes. 
Transfer to a serving platter, adjust seasoning and finish with a splash of more sherry vinegar, if needed.  Sprinkle on the crumbled blue cheese and serve.  

Porthouse steak, simply grilled with salt and pepper, and garlic braised greens, which is modeled after the version from one our favorite restaurants (Just a Taste in Ithaca, NY), with garlic, sherry vinegar, bleu cheese, tomatoes, and walnuts. The walnut complements well the nuttiness of the greens, and the acid from the sherry vinegar stands up well to the bitterness of the greens and cuts through the richness from the blue cheese. It’s a nice alternate preparation from the traditional bacon and onion collard greens preparation. Our version of the dish is as follows:

Ingredients:

1 lb of fresh kale, collard greens, swiss chard, mustard greens, or a mixture of different kinds, the stems removes and leaves chopped into medium-sized pieces 

4 cloves of garlic, finely chopped

1 tablespoons of olive oil

1/4 cup of sherry vinegar

2 tomatoes

1 handful of chopped walnuts

handful of blue cheese (any kind, we usually use gorgonzola), crumbled

salt and pepper

Steps:

Heat the olive oil over medium heat, add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds.

Add the leaves of the greens and the sherry vinegar, season with salt and pepper.  Close the lid and cook for until the leaves are al dente, about 10 minutes, adding a little water if needed.

Add the chopped tomatoes and walnuts, and cook for another 1-2 minutes. 

Transfer to a serving platter, adjust seasoning and finish with a splash of more sherry vinegar, if needed.  Sprinkle on the crumbled blue cheese and serve.  

#Just A Taste  #bleu cheese  #garlic  #greens  #kale  #low carb