Asian Recipes

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More tips on using ginger

When storing ginger in liquid
Peel pieces or slices of ginger, place them in a glass jar, and fill with dry sherry or vodka. Secure the lid and refrigerate for 4 to 6 weeks. The sherry (or vodka) and ginger will exchange flavors during storage. You can use ginger-kissed sherry in stir-fry sauces or marinades.

To juice ginger
When you want the pure essence of ginger without the fibers, make ginger juice. A tablespoon or two is great in sauces or marinades for chicken breast strips or shrimp. The easiest method is to keep a chunk of ginger in the freezer. When you're ready to use it, thaw it, then press out the juices with a garlic press. You can also peel fresh ginger, cut it into chunks, and shred it on a cheese grater or puree it in a food processor. Then, wrap the shredded or pureed ginger in a piece of cheesecloth and squeeze out the juice.

To use ground ginger
Avoid using ground ginger to replace fresh ginger. It's made from the same rhizome as fresh ginger but it has a very different flavor. Ground ginger works best in gingerbread, pumpkin pie, and other baked goods, as well as in curries with other Indian spices.

To use candied ginger
Crystallized, or candied, ginger is usually made from slices of fresh ginger that have been softened in a sugar syrup and coated with crystallized sugar. Store it in a jar with a tight-fitting lid. Chop or snip with scissors and add freely to cookie doughs, muffins, scones, or ice cream. Crystallized ginger also makes an elegant addition to glazes for roasted poultry or braised root vegetables.

To use Japanese pickled pink ginger
When tender young spring and fall ginger is sliced paper-thin and pickled, it turns a lovely pink color. Eat pickled ginger with sushi and sashimi, or add to relish-like condiments, marinades,m and mayonnaise.

** Asian Recipes **

10:51:19 on 05/24/09 by Webmaster - Quick Cooking Tips -

How to tame the bite of raw garlic

In order to tame the bite of raw garlic, saute it briefly in a little oil, just to soften but not color. This is a good technique before making recipes that usually begin with raw garlic. You can also drop unpeeled garlic cloves in boiling water for 1 minute. The peels will slip off easily and the garlic flavor will have mellowed. Or you can toast unpeeled cloves in a dry skillet over medium-high heat for 5 minutes, shaking the pan occasionally. Peel and use as desired.

Garlic also provides flavor to mashed potatoes quite well. When making a pot of mashed potatoes, add 1 to 3 whole, peeled garlic cloves to the cooking water with the potatoes. After draining, mash as usual, garlic cloves included. The cooked garlic will add a mellow garlic flavor.

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11:36:34 on 05/08/09 by Webmaster - Quick Cooking Tips -

Flavor Essences

These are concentrated flavorings made by distilling fruit or other ingredients with the same process used to distill perfume. Flavor essences are much stronger and purer than flavor extracts such as vanilla extract, and a little goes a long way. In fact, if you use too much, the flavor can be intensely unpleasant. For example, 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon flavor essence would be enough to flavor 1 quart of fruit sorbet. You can buy flavor essences in large supermarkets and specialty shops and through catalogs.

To boost the flavor of strawberries
When sweetening 1 or 2 pints of strawberries, reserve the best ones whole or halved, then mash the remaining ones with sugar to taste, and add 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon wild strawberry essence (and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract, if desired).

To mix or match flavor essences
Dozens of flavor essences are available: strawberry, raspberry, peach, pineapple, pistachio, chocolate, caramel, and coffee, to name just a few. They always work well when matching, say, fresh pineapple with pineapple essence, but you can experiment and add caramel along with the pineapple essence to create a great flavoring.

** Asian Recipes **

12:35:35 on 05/01/09 by Webmaster - Quick Cooking Tips -