was asked to do a cooking demo at teban gardens on 6.3.2019. ^^
this my 5th cooking demo and sharing.
today i chose –
- salted fish minced pork egg white fried rice
- 回锅肉 doublecooked pork
fried rice i could do on the spot. 回锅肉 doublecooked pork i cooked the belly pork first and also the leeks and onions first as leek took some time to cook. then i fried with leeks and onions on the spot.
so there were many ingredients/boxes i have to bring – like cooked rice, minced pork, salted fish, egg white, chopped garlic, oil chopped scallions and crispy chilli for garnishing the fried rice, mala chilli for frying the 回锅肉 doublecooked pork etc.
i started with fried rice dish as it took a while to cook on the spot.回锅肉 doublecooked pork is easy & quick just mixing the 2 items – belly pork and vegetables together.
this a very interactive class. they have many questions throughout the session = like can use salted egg or olive vegetable instead of salted fish, why egg white, what’s the difference using whole egg etc..
i started by explaining that i fried the chopped garlic and salted fish together as i didn’t want to burn either and i happened to have broccoli stems which i cut into small pieces to give texture to the fried rice.
salted fish gives a very fragrant flavour when you fry. i turned the fire to high and added the cooked rice and fried, mixed thoroughly, high heat, not too long, then dished out and set aside. the fried rice is tasty as it is.
(so of course one can add salted egg or olive vegetables instead of salted fish OR not to add any..likewise one can can seafood or prawns instead of minced pork etc..or char siew in yangzhou fried rice…so many ways la…)
i explained that the proportion balance of ingredients is important so by agaklogy i did not add all the rice (2cups) so as not to diu=lute the taste.
frying egg white
now i fried the egg white – i had 5 egg whites, so maybe equal to 2.5 eggs.
it is important to let the egg white formed, so that it would not be messy. this step is most important whether using whole egg or egg white.
now i added the fried rice and folded the egg over and broke it up so like in the restaurants you see the distinct bits of egg whites. if the whole egg or egg white is added to the rice and fried, then it coats the rice and the texture is more sticky and mushy, whereas this way the rice are individual grains.
egg white or whole for me is just aesthetics..of course the taste also a bit different and a golden colour fried rice is also appetising as well. i like both preparations.
the fried rice is best presented on a large plate garnished with chopped scallions. i added crispy chilli.
they all like the crispy prawn chilli and several added extra to their bowls.
the 回锅肉 doublecooked pork is quite straight forward.
i explained that 回锅肉 is a sichuan dish 四川菜肴 and generally done with mala chilli and fried with various vegetables.
the english translation is doublecooked pork (double cook as in returning the pork to the wok to cook a second time so the name 回锅肉).
doublecook though is a common technique used in every cuisine western or asian…teochew has 半煎煮鱼1/2 fried and braised fish and western dishes even steak has reverse sear method sous vide then pangrilled or flamed etc.
today i have leftover leeks so i fried leeks (the white part) and yellow onions with a bit of oyster sauce. covered wok to cook for 5 mins and make sure leek was just done and not overcooked. the simple veg dish alone smelled great actually.
the belly pork i salted for few hours then boiled in water for 1hr 40mins, most important test poking a chopstick through the lean meat going through cleanly. cooled it and put in fridge. this so that i could cut the belly pork cleanly w/o fraying when adding to the veg.
so now just put the leek and onion to the wok on high heat, added the cut belly pork, then added 1 tbsp of mala chilli oil…(because request to add less, i added 1tsp…later everyone said it was very fragrant not enough though so some added more themselves).
it was a very meaningful day for me and i hope for the participants as well.
everyone was enjoying the food and they were full of questions and very participatory so i guess it was time well spent for them as well.