Asian Recipes

Asian Recipes Blog

The Unrivaled Practical Guide for Asian Cooking

Baking with Margarine

It is used as a butter substitute, stick margarine is made from vegetable oil that has been hydrogenated to transform it from a liquid oil into a solid fat. When choosing, read the margarine labels carefully so that you know just what you're buying. Regular margarine are 80 percent fat and 20 percent water, flavoring, coloring, and other additives. Butter-margarine blends offer more butter flavor and are usually 40 percent butter and 60 percent margarine. Reduced and low-fat margarines are mostly water and cannot be used for baking.

To store, you can refrigerate margarine for up to 2 months and freeze for no more than 6 months. If you need to reduce fat intake, buy tub margarine instead of stick margarine. Tub margarine contains less than half the amount of trans fatty acids (a harmful type of fat) that stick margarine does. And some tub margarine have no trans fatty acids. Generally, tub-style margarines are not suitable for baking because of their high water content.

14:18:55 on 08/24/09 by Webmaster - Cooking Guide -

Maple Syrup

Sweet, rich-tasting, pure maple syrup is made from the boiled and reduced sap of the sugar maple tree, which thrives in the cold climates of the northeastern United States and Canada. Excellent over pancakes and waffles, maple syrup also makes a delicious glaze for pork, poultry, and vegetables, and can be used to flavor frosting, puddings, cakes, and pies.

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12:11:20 on 08/23/09 by Webmaster - Cooking Guide -


Though considered exotic by many, mangoes are a staple in the equatorial regions of the world. They have been cultivated in India since 2000 B.C. Mangoes comes in all shapes and sizes, from oblong and pear-shaped to long and shinny. Some weigh 4 ounces; some weigh 4 pounds. Skin color ranges from greenish yellow to red-blushes, while the flesh can vary from lemon yellow to brilliant reddish orange.

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07:03:24 on 08/22/09 by Webmaster - Cooking Guide -

About Macadamia Nuts

Although native to Australia, where it is also known by the names of Queensland nut and Australian hazel, the macadamia nut is practically synonymous with Hawaii. Macadamia nuts are among the richest nuts in the world. They turn rancid quickly, so store them in a tightly closed jar in a cool place and use as soon as possible. Always taste one first before using.

To chop macadamia nuts easily, just place a clean kitchen towel between the nuts and the cutting board so that the nuts won't bounce off the board while chopping.

Macadamia nuts could be used to add crunch in rice pilaf. Add about half cup chopped macadamia nuts when making your favorite rice pilaf. Salted macadamia nuts can also be used as sweets. Just place them in a strainer and rinse under running water to wash off the salt. Place them in a dry skillet and shake the pan over low heat until dry.

** Asian Cooking **

03:15:26 on 08/19/09 by Webmaster - Cooking Guide -

Cooking lobster

When buying live lobster, don't worry about its mottled greenish-brown appearance. The deep red pigment in the shell, known as astaxanthin, will shine through as color-binding proteins break down during cooking. When choosing for a live lobster, look for live, active lobsters placed in seawater. Their tails should curl under when picked up. If stored on ice, they may be sluggish, but the tails should still curl under. Bacteria form quickly in dead lobsters, so make sure that lobsters are alive before you buy and cook them. One whole lobster (1 to 1.5 pounds) yields about a quarter pound of meat, which is enough for only 1 serving.

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21:47:09 on 08/18/09 by Webmaster - Cooking Guide -

Liver, a nutritious organ meat

One of the most nutritious organ meats, liver is best when it comes from a young animal. Calf's liver tends to have a more tender texture and better flavor than beef liver. When choosing liver, note that fresh liver has vivid color and a moist, but not shiny, surface. It should have a clean, fresh scent too. The more-tender calf's liver is pale pink-brown in color. Beef liver is reddish brown. Other popular animal livers include lamb, pork, chicken, turkey, and goose.

When storing liver, wrap it in waxed paper and refrigerate up to 1 day. To ensure a tender cooked liver, always avoid overcooking. Thinly sliced calf's liver should be cooked over medium-high heat, just until pink in the center, about 2 minutes per side.

** Asian Recipes **

07:02:51 on 08/16/09 by Webmaster - Cooking Guide -

Cooking with Limes

The two most popular types of limes on the market are Tahiti limes and Mexican limes. Of the two, Tahiti limes (or Persian limes) are the most common. They never have seeds, so there is no need to take precautions for catching seeds when juicing them. Mexican limes called limones in Mexico and Key limes in the United States, are becoming increasingly more available. Limes are more aromatic and slightly more acidic than lemons, but they can often be used interchangeably.

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13:18:31 on 08/15/09 by Webmaster - Cooking Guide -

Cooking with Lima Beans

In general, lima beans cook pretty fast and require no soaking. Sometimes, however, dried limas have been sitting on the shelf for so long that they never become tender when cooked. If you know that your lima beans are more than 1 year old, soak them to be safe before cooking. Fresh lima beans can be shell very quickly. Just cut a thin strip from the inner edge of the pod with scissors. The beans will fall out as the pod opens.

To avoid tough lima beans, hold off on adding acidic ingredients, such as tomatoes, vinegar, or wine, until after the lime beans have cooked through. Acids react with the starch in beans and prevent them from swelling.

** Asian Recipes **

15:36:10 on 08/13/09 by Webmaster - Cooking Guide -

Lettuce as refreshing salads

Sweet, juicy lettuce leaves are the base for a wide range of refreshing salads. When choosing lettuce, the best heads of lettuce are dense and heavy for their size with unblemished leaves. Avoid limp heads with brown spots or hollow centers.

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06:24:16 on 08/12/09 by Webmaster - Cooking Guide -

Cooking with Lentils

Lentils is one of the oldest cultivated crops in the world, high-protein lentils are small, thin-skinned, and fast-cooking, requiring no soaking. They are delicious, economical, and extremely versatile.

When choosing, please note that all lentils have an earthy, almost nutty flavor. Brown lentils, sometimes called green, are the most common type and are greenish-brown in color. Small French green lentils are smaller and darker green, and they cook up firmer than brown lentils. They hold their shape well and have excellent flavor. Red lentils are slightly smaller and more orange than red.

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06:50:47 on 08/11/09 by Webmaster - Cooking Guide -

Cooking with Lemons

Prized for their sweet, acidic juice and flavorful zest, lemons have a wide range of uses in the kitchen. They're essential for rounding out the flavors of many sauces and are the primary flavoring in a host of desserts. A bit of fresh lemon juice is often all that is needed to enliven a dull-tasting dish, especially chicken and seafood.

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21:43:50 on 08/07/09 by Webmaster - Cooking Guide -

Cooking with Leeks

Leeks is one of the sweeter members of the onion family, as it looks like an overgrown scallions. Leeks are available year-round, so leeks tend to be best from the fall until the spring, when their cores begin to turn tough. Look for those with bright, crisp leaves, and buy the smallest ones in the market, which tend to be sweeter.

Store leeks in a perforated plastic bag and refrigerate for up to 1 week. When washing leeks, be careful as leeks often hide a great deal of grit in their many tight leaf layers. The easiest way to wash them is to slice or chop them first, then place the pieces in a large bowl. Fill the bowl with cool water. Swish the leeks about with your hands to loosen any dirt, which will settle at the bottom of the bowl. Lift out the cleaned leek pieces with a slotted spoon or small strainer. Avoid pouring the leeks and water from the bowl through a strainer of colander, which could cause the dirt to fall back onto the cleaned leeks.

When slicing leeks, trim off the root and the dark green leaves at the top of the leek, leaving about 1" of the pale green part attached to the white. Cut the leek in half lengthwise, and then cut crosswise into thin slices.

04:58:00 on 08/06/09 by Webmaster - Cooking Guide -

Cooking Lamb

Known for its tenderness and delicate, yet rich flavor, lamb is the meat of sheep that are less than 1 year old. Mutton is lamb that is more than 2 years old.

When choosing lamb, look for bright, moist lamb that is not sticky or slimy. The fat on the surface should be white and waxy-looking. Depending on the age of the animal, the color of the flesh should range from pink to pale red. For the freshest flavor, cook lamb on the same day that you buy it. Whole cuts keep best and may be refrigerated for up to 4 days. Ground lamb has a greater area of exposed surfaces and is more susceptible to contamination, so refrigerate it for no more than 2 days.

When freezing lamb, carefully wrap and freeze whole cuts for up to 9 months and ground lamb for up to 4 months. When cooking firmer cuts of lamb, moist-heat cooking methods such as braising, poaching, or stewing help tenderize firmer cuts of lamb, such as shank, breast, shoulder, neck slices, and riblets.

However, when cooking tender cuts of lamb, dry-heat methods such as broiling or grilling work well with tender cuts such as shoulder chops, rib chops, sirloin, butterflied whole leg, leg steaks, and cubed kebabs. Roasting works best for rolled and tied boneless leg and shoulder roasts, or for bone-in leg of lamb.

** Delicious Meat and Kebabs Recipes **

04:49:24 on 08/03/09 by Webmaster - Cooking Guide -

About Kitchen Knives

Almost any good cook will tell you that a good-quality knife is the single most important tool in the kitchen. However, there is no reason to buy a lot of knives. Just be sure to stock 3 top-quality ones: a chef's knife (for chopping, slicing, and dicing), a paring knife (for paring), and a serrated knife (for bread and tomatoes). The chef's knife is most important. Men are usually comfortable with an 8" or 10" chef's knife; many women prefer a 6" knife for its lighter weight. Hold the knife in your hand. It should feel comfortable and be easy to grip. The knife that feels good in your hand is the right knife for you.

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08:52:58 on 08/02/09 by Webmaster - Cooking Guide -