Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Kaffir Lime Ice Cream

I love it when I get to try new flavors. Most of the time, that will mean it's something exotic. In this case, it was the kaffir lime leaf. The tree itself bears wrinkly, small green fruit and their leaves come in twos. It looks like two leaves end to end. They can be used for freshening up the garbage can or making Thai coconut soup. The leaves have their own distinct flavor and are very fragrant especially if you tear them. You might not be able to tell the difference between a lemon and a lime, but you can definitely tell the difference between a lime and this Kaffir lime leaf.
My coworker gave me a bag full of them and I used it to make ice cream. It was really good on this hot summer day. I used 3/4 cup of sugar, 1-1/2 cups milk, 1-1/2 heavy cream, handful of kaffir lime leaves, 6 egg yolks, pinch of salt.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

XO Sauce

To make our own XO sauce, I started by soaking dry scallop overnight. The following day I mashed it up to smaller pieces. For the kick, I used what we had on hand which were red pepper flakes, the kind you put on pizza. I didn't want the seeds in there, so I separated the seeds from the flakes. It wasn't that tedious. I put the crushed red peppers in a bowl and stuck that bowl in a much larger bowl. Then you blow and the lighter flakes fly out of the smaller bowl directly into the larger bowl. I gave myself a fright when I was deep frying the scallops because I didn't dry them enough and you know what happens when there's too much water with hot oil. It was like ooohh sh*!.
Fairly simple, except for the deep frying. Just dried scallop, red pepper flakes, soy bean oil and a bit of salt. I like the taste of this homemade version. It has more scallop flavor vs. the store bought one.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Kumquat Juice

 I picked some kumquats from my parents kumquat tree thinking it'll be a brilliant idea to make juice out of this tiny citrus fruit. Picked, washed, sliced, seeded, pureed, I then mixed with simple syrup and water. I use only enough sugar to keep the drink light. Kumquats are a bit sour to begin with, so I was aiming for a sort of kumquat-ade juice. After getting the perfect balance of sugar-puree-water (perfect for my palette at least), I found that the little bits of kumquat skin added an extra element to this drink, more flavor, so no need to strain. This drink is awesome.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Roasted Heirloom Tomatoes

I recently went to an Italian restaurant where they served Italian bread with olive oil infused with tomato bits. It was delicious, so I thought I'd give it a try. I roasted heirloom tomatoes with balsamic vinegar and salt. Chopped it into itty-bitty pieces and combined it with extra virgin olive oil and more salt. It didn't taste like the one I had at the restaurant, but it was still good in it's own way. We had it with rye bread and will probably be even better if I had some Italian bread on hand.