Steamy Kitchen Recipes | RSS Feed http://steamykitchen.com Steamy Kitchen Food Blog: fast recipes, simple recipes, with fresh ingredients to create delicious meals. Wed, 01 Jul 2015 20:35:01 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.2.2 Very Best Mashed Potatoes http://steamykitchen.com/21976-very-best-mashed-potatoes-recipe.html http://steamykitchen.com/21976-very-best-mashed-potatoes-recipe.html#comments Mon, 23 Jul 2012 07:26:00 +0000 http://steamykitchen.com/?p=21976 The secret to the very best mashed potatoes recipe is only using 2 ingredients! Recipe from award-winning chef Cory York.

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Very Best Mash Potatoes Recipe

When I’m making mashed potatoes, I’m usually thinking about only one thing – what am I going to mix in? We’ve done Miso Mashed Potatoes, Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes, garam masala mashed potatoes, corned beef mashed potatoes, bacon mashed potatoes, etc. I’m always looking for new ideas to give the otherwise plain potatoes some texture, zing and excitement.

One question that I’ve never asked myself was – how to make the very best mashed potato in the first place? The recipe seems simple: peel, boil, mash, salt, milk, butter, mix.

Well, a few weeks ago, we bought tickets to Cirque du Soleil in Orlando and before the show, we dined at Deep Blu restaurant at Wyndham Grand Orlando Resort, Bonnet Creek. I know what you’re saying – in all of Orlando, you chose a hotel restaurant???

Yup. We sure did.

Deep Blu is not just any hotel restaurant. It’s the very best seafood restaurant that just happens to be located inside a hotel. That’s not just my opinion – see Deep Blu reviews on Open TableOrlando Weekly reviewUrban Spoon reviewOrlando Magazine reviewYelp reviews.

Very best mashed potatoes recipe - table

Very best mashed potatoes recipe - chefScott ordered a side of mashed potatoes for the table. When the waitress left, “You ordered mashed potatoes at a fancy seafood restaurant???” <– that was me and my big mouth

They were the very. best. mashed. potatoes. ever. I ate nearly the entire bowl of it myself, after apologizing profusely to my husband for giving him crap for the order.

I needed to know the recipe! What did the chef add into the mashed potatoes to make them so creamy, smooth, buttery, luxurious? Was it olive oil? sour cream? buttermilk? mangalitsa lard? duck fat? It was driving me crazy, so I asked the chef.

So what did I learn from Chef Cory York?

To make the very best mashed potatoes, you only need 2 ingredients. Potato and Butter.

Very Best Mashed Potatoes Recipe butterVery Best Mashed Potatoes Recipe potato

I didn’t believe him. Until I tried it myself.

It’s all in the technique. Steam, not boil.

Very Best Mashed Potatoes Recipe you know you want these

How to make the very best mashed potatoes

You can pretty much use any potato that you want – some are adamant that the waxy-skinned Yukons are the best for mashed potatoes – and others don’t care.

I prefer the Yukon golds for mashed potatoes, I think they result in a smooth. creamy texture and are naturally buttery-tasting on their own.

Why steam? Steaming cooks the potatoes gently, delicately, disturbing the starch molecules as little as possible. Boiling is more violent, direct contact with the hot, boiling water, potatoes knocking against each other in the boil. The more that the starch is beat up like a thug, the more chance it has to get gummy, glue-y and mealy.

Peel the potatoes and compost the peels.

Very Best Mashed Potatoes Recipe raw peeled

Quarter the potatoes. I’ve put them in a silicon steamer basket.

Very Best Mashed Potatoes Recipe peeled cubed

I used my Steamy Kitchen wok because it’s so simple to steam in with plenty of space.

Very Best Mashed Potatoes Recipe Awesome Wok

Cover.

Very Best Mashed Potatoes Recipe prep for steaming

Steam.

Very Best Mashed Potatoes Recipe steaming potato

Use a potato ricer (here are 3 ricers that are highly rated). Don’t try to use any electronic gadgety gadgets to mash the potatoes – Just keep it simple. A good ol’ fashioned potato masher works too – but the ricer will give you the best smooth texture.

Very Best Mashed Potatoes Recipe smashing potato

Mix in salted butter with a wooden spoon. Again, no electronics here – mixing too fast (like in a mixer) will make the potatoes gummy and glue-y.

Very Best Mashed Potatoes Recipe mix in butter

If you want, top with chives.

Very Best Mashed Potatoes Recipe chive garnish

And maybe a bit more melted butter. No cream, no milk.

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Very Best Mashed Potatoes Recipe

Servings: 4 Prep Time: 5 minutes Cook Time: 25 minutes
Very Best Mash Potatoes Recipe

I love yukon potatoes the best for mashed potatoes, but feel free to use russet potatoes. One of the biggest mistakes in making mashed potatoes is not seasoning with enough salt. Think of a good french fry. You can taste the salt, right? Great french fries don't need ketchup. Same with mashed potatoes. They should be seasoned enough that you happily eat it plain with no gravy! One more note: Want more butter in the mashed potatoes? GO FOR IT!

Ingredients:

4 large yukon potatoes (about 1 1/2 pounds)
3-4 tablespoons salted butter
salt
OPTIONAL: few sprigs fresh chives, minced (or other fresh herb)

Directions:

1. Peel the potatoes and cut each potato into 4 pieces. Place the potatoes in a steamer rack (or see notes above) and prop up in a large pot. Pour in 2" of water into a large pot, and bring to a simmer. Turn heat to medium-high and steam the potatoes for 20 minutes or until they pierce very easily with a paring knife. You might have to refill the steaming water in your pot (just keep an eye on the water level).

2. Let potatoes cool and process through a potato ricer.

3. Stir in the butter and season with salt. Taste and adjust with additional salt and/or butter if needed. If the mashed potatoes isn't quite creamy enough, add more butter. Sprinkle fresh minced chives on top.

 

 

 

 

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Salt Cod (Bacalao) with Potatoes over Rice http://steamykitchen.com/20173-bacalao-salt-cod-with-potatoes-rice-recipe.html http://steamykitchen.com/20173-bacalao-salt-cod-with-potatoes-rice-recipe.html#comments Tue, 17 Jan 2012 15:43:57 +0000 http://steamykitchen.com/?p=20173 Bacalao, pronounced [bah-kah-LAH-oh] is Portuguese dried, salted cod fish. Before refrigeration, fish was dried and preserved in salt to keep in the cellar. There are hundreds of variations of bacalao recipes, but my favorite has always been Bacalao con Patatas (bacalao with potatoes) – however I don’t make it much at home because traditional recipes require too many steps and forethought for ...

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Bacalao, pronounced [bah-kah-LAH-oh] is Portuguese dried, salted cod fish. Before refrigeration, fish was dried and preserved in salt to keep in the cellar. There are hundreds of variations of bacalao recipes, but my favorite has always been Bacalao con Patatas (bacalao with potatoes) – however I don’t make it much at home because traditional recipes require too many steps and forethought for my bad habits (impatience and spontaneity).

After spying a bag of bacalao at my local market, I decided to create a recipe that that would cut out a major tedious step. Unfortunately, I couldn’t nix the “forethought” part – as bacalao needs to be soaked overnight in water to get rid of some of its salt. It’s a step that can’t be skipped (boo) and there really isn’t a good shortcut.

The “major tedious step” I’m talking about is boiling the potatoes first before adding it to the dish. Okay, so I’m being dramatic, but bringing a large pot of water to boil (and of course, staring at the darn thing waiting for the first bubbles) and then cooking the potatoes until tender is crazy boring and requires another pot on the stove.

Instead, dice the potatoes into 1/2″ dice, briefly brown them in the saute pan along with the rest of the vegetables. Then add the bacalao, a cup of water, cover and let ’em all simmer quietly and harmoniously for 15 minutes, just enough time to cook the potatoes through.

Serve over pasta, rice, quinoa….or enjoy with a loaf of bread.

Salt Cod (Bacalao) with Potatoes over Rice

Step 1: soak the bacalao overnight in cool water. This is a step you cannot skip….the fish will be way to salty.

Salt Cod (Bacalao) with Potatoes over Rice

The fresh ingredients – bell pepper, garlic, onion, tomatoes, salt cod (bacalao), celery and potatoes. All the veg are diced small – quicker cooking!

First, brown the potatoes in the saute pan.

Then saute the aromatics – garlic, onion, bell pepper, celery.

and add the rest of the ingredients in:

Including the de-salted (and drained) bacalao.

Cover and simmer for 15 minutes.

Serve over rice, pasta, quinoa…or enjoy with a loaf of bread.

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Salt Cod (Bacalao) with Potatoes over Rice Recipe

Servings: 4 Prep Time: 15 minutes + overnight soaking Cook Time: 20 minutes
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Ingredients:

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large russet potato, peeled and cut into 1/2" dice
1 bell pepper, diced
1/2 onion, diced
1 stalk celery, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tomatoes, diced
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 cup water
2 cups rice grains + water to cook
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
1 pound salt cod (bacalao), soaked overnight (see note below)

Directions:

1. The night before, cover the bacalao with cool water and refrigerate.

2. Drain the bacalao, rinse with fresh water. Cut into 1" pieces.

3. Heat a large saute pan over medium-high heat with the olive oil. When hot, add the potatoes and cook until lightly browned on all sides, about 2 minutes. Add in the bell pepper, onion, celery and garlic and saute for 3-4 minutes. Add in the tomatoes, tomato paste, water and stir. Bring to a simmer and add in the bacalao. Cover and simmer for 15 minutes or until the potatoes are cooked through. Stir in the parsley.

4. In the meantime, cook the rice according to package instructions. Serve the stew over rice.

 

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Potato and Leek Rosti http://steamykitchen.com/10829-potato-and-leek-rosti.html http://steamykitchen.com/10829-potato-and-leek-rosti.html#comments Sun, 15 Aug 2010 16:34:21 +0000 http://steamykitchen.com/?p=10829 Simple and elegant Potato and Leek Rosti recipe over at Steamy Kitchen on TLC.

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Simple and elegant Potato and Leek Rosti recipe over at Steamy Kitchen on TLC.

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The perfect french fry explained http://steamykitchen.com/9674-the-perfect-french-fry-explained.html http://steamykitchen.com/9674-the-perfect-french-fry-explained.html#comments Tue, 01 Jun 2010 00:35:56 +0000 http://steamykitchen.com/?p=9674 J. Kenji Lopez-Alt is my hero. A must-read for the anatomy of the perfect fry.

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J. Kenji Lopez-Alt is my hero. A must-read for the anatomy of the perfect fry.

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Potato Dominoes http://steamykitchen.com/4644-potato-dominoes.html http://steamykitchen.com/4644-potato-dominoes.html#comments Sun, 26 Jul 2009 17:43:13 +0000 http://steamykitchen.com/?p=4644 Andrew just celebrated his sixth birthday last week, and like many little boys, he’s obsessed with Star Wars. We’re currently at the height of the Lego craze and for Andrew’s birthday all he wanted was go to the Lego store inside Downtown Disney, you know, the free part of Disney where everything is double the price, which makes it not-so-free ...

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Potato Dominoes Recipe

Andrew just celebrated his sixth birthday last week, and like many little boys, he’s obsessed with Star Wars. We’re currently at the height of the Lego craze and for Andrew’s birthday all he wanted was go to the Lego store inside Downtown Disney, you know, the free part of Disney where everything is double the price, which makes it not-so-free I guess. But no boy as young as Andrew should be allowed to own a Star Wars Republic Attack Gun Ship with 1,034 itty bitty Lego pieces, especially a boy whose mother is neurotic, a father who’s intensely by-the-book-must-follow-instructions and who’s younger brother who loves to tinker, smash, crash and explode things.

Potato Dominoes Recipe

Can you even imagine the four-letter and fifty-eight letter curse words that pierces the air every time I step on a stray, plastic, sharp-edged Lego? Or little brother Nathan’s curiosity that compels him to find out what happens he breaks these 392 pieces off and put them on the other side? Well let me tell you what happens. It no longer functions as a $129.00 Star Wars Republic Attack Gun Ship. Birthday boy cries, Dad’s frustrated because he can’t find missing pieces and I storm into the garage to take the shop-vac out to suck up every single crack of dignity Lego Luke Skywalker ever had.

Potato Dominoes Recipe

And then for the first time in the Steamy Kitchen, I grabbed a cookbook and followed a recipe exactly. No substitutions, no tinkering, no eyeballing measurements. And it turned out wonderful.

Potato Dominoes Recipe

How to make Potato Dominoes

Well, first ya gotta cut your potatoes into a rectangular cube shape. Be prepared to have LOTS of potato scraps. But please don’t be a douche and just throw away the scraps – just plan to have skillet potatoes tomorrow morning and use the scraps in the recipe. See how nice and cubular this is?

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I was sent a Aroma Electric Mandoline Slicer from Aroma to check out, which worked perfectly to slices those potatoes into super-thin slices. That’s Nathan right there, he was fascinated by the see-saw back and forth motion of the mandoline. That’s Nathan in the pic. He’s a mischevious one. Gotta keep an eye on him. That look? You know he’s thinking about what he can stick in that machine to slice.

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What do I think about this Aroma Electric Mandoline Slicer?

  • YAY: Smaller, lighter than a food processor. Easy to use, easy to clean. Saves your fingers and knuckles from sharp blade standard mandoline. If you’re a kitchen klutz, this is important. Small, nimble.
  • NAY: Loud, pretty pricey. If you’re spending over $60, you might as well get a food processor with different blades if you have the room in your kitchen. I’ve just been advised that this Aroma Electric Mandoline Slicer is only $39.00 at Target.

So obviously the lighting in my kitchen sucks (some days I feel like grabbing a ladder and cutting a sunroof) I brought these perfectly sliced potato cards closer to the light.

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The potatoes are pretty starchy, so you kinda want to separate them a bit and stack them like a deck of cards – messily, like so:

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You’ll use the scrap potato ends to prop the domino (or cards) up so that they don’t fall over while you’re assembling the stack

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The longer it takes you to do this domino stacking business, the more discoloration you’ll get on the potatoes. But don’t worry, it’s still all good – I promise that the discoloration will disappear once it’s baked.

Don’t stack too many potatoes – give it some breathing room – otherwise it will be difficult to cook evenly. Just a nice, loose stack of potatoes.

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Ready for the sexy food shot??? Now feast your eyes on that!

Potato Dominoes Recipe

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Seven Fires' Potato Dominoes Recipe

Servings: 4 Prep Time: 30 minutes Cook Time: 40 minutes
Potato Dominoes Recipe

Recipe from Seven Fires Grilling the Argentine Way by Francis Mallmann. If you feel like tinkering with the recipe, just don't leave stray pieces laying around the floor. I will step on them and it will hurt. Anyways, for something a little different, I would add a little sprinkle of a seasoning, like cinnamon or nutmeg. Also, if you don't want to go through the trouble of clarifying butter, just use regular butter.

Ingredients:

4 Idaho (baking) potatoes
4 tablespoons chilled clarified butter (see below)
coarse salt (like sea salt or kosher salt)

Directions:

Preheat your oven to 400F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with a Silpat, use a nonstick baking sheet or a medium-sized baking dish.

Cut off the two ends of one potato and reserve them. Trim the 4 sides of the potato to form an even brick. Slice of potato about 1/8 inch thick on a mandoline, keeping the slices in order if you can (just like a line of shingled dominoes). Hold the stack of potato slices in the palm of one hand and use the other to shape them back into a brick, as you would a deck of cards. Lay the stack on its side on the baking sheet and put the reserved potato ends, cut side down at either end keep the stack aligned. Then, with the palm of your hand, angle slices slightly to resemble a line of dominoes that has tilted over. Adjust the end pieces to keep the stack and shape, and align the slices if necessary.

Dot the top and sides with pieces of the clarified butter. Sprinkle with salt to taste. Repeat with the remaining potatoes, keeping the stacks at least 2 inches apart.

Bake for 40 minutes, or until the potatoes are browned on the edges and tender in the middle when tested with a skewer. Serve immediately.

To Make the Clarified Butter
1/2 pound unsalted butter

Slowly melt the butter in a heavy small saucepan over medium low heat. Do not stir. Remove from the heat, and carefully spoon off all of the foam from the top. Pour the clear liquid butter through a fine mesh strainer lined with cheesecloth, leaving behind the solids in the pan. Once cool, the clarified butter can be refrigerated for weeks.

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The Ultimate Breakfast Pancake http://steamykitchen.com/4502-the-ultimate-breakfast-pancake.html http://steamykitchen.com/4502-the-ultimate-breakfast-pancake.html#comments Tue, 14 Jul 2009 17:47:17 +0000 http://steamykitchen.com/?p=4502 Update 12/8/09 I’m thrilled to share that I’m a featured blogger for Oprah’s Holiday 2009! Looking at this photo, you can only come to two conclusions. Either I had way too much to drink the night before, and this was my hangover cure… or I must be pregnant. Sadly, neither are true. I was just hungry. They say never to ...

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Update 12/8/09 I’m thrilled to share that I’m a featured blogger for Oprah’s Holiday 2009!

Looking at this photo, you can only come to two conclusions. Either I had way too much to drink the night before, and this was my hangover cure… or I must be pregnant. Sadly, neither are true. I was just hungry. They say never to go grocery shopping with an empty stomach, and I’d like to add to that rule. Never go blog surfing with an empty stomach.

I was looking around for some inspiration, a dish to cook for live television segment shot at my home. I asked my Twitter friends for some ideas and promised to make one of their dishes. The moment I saw Alice’s Breakfast Pancake, I knew instantly that I had to make it. How can you not resist layers upon layers of fluffy pancake, stuffed with ALL of my favorite breakfast foods?

If you can’t decide what to make for breakfast, why not just make all? I say it solves many problems, as I’m sure each of your family members like different things. Plus, this is a show-stoppin’ breakfast for realz.

The Fox 13 television crew arrived at my home at 6:00am. That early in the morning, I’m not pretty nor am I completely functional. But one thing I knew for sure – I’d be the gossip topic of the block. I love stumping my neighbors.

We were broadcasting live, so they brought out the big news van with a 60 foot tall satellite thingy. So my neighbors either thought something scandalous happened at the Steamy household or I finally got arrested for posing as Rachel Ray.

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The Ultimate Breakfast Pancake Segment

How to make the Ultimate Breakfast Pancake

It’s best to make all the layers fillings ahead of time. In fact, you can make EVERYTHING ahead of time, use the microwave or oven to warm up and assemble all at once.

The first layer is the roasted potatoes – it’s a nice solid base.

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Because I’m a dork and I paid attention during underwater basket weaving class in high school, I weaved my bacon when I made the cake for the photoshoot. Totally unnecessary, because only YOU will know that the a bacon has a beautiful basket weave. To make straight bacon, lay the bacon slices on a rack, then on a baking sheet. You’ll cook them 10-15 minutes in the oven and they stay pretty flat. Plus much of the grease drips down into the pan (the rest just blot off) which makes it easier to pour the grease out into a little bowl.

Not for health reasons.

I save my bacon grease.

To dip pretzels in.

You know you’re totally going to try it.

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Then use a pair of kitchen shears to cut the bacon nice and neat if you’re anal like me. But watch out for little hands who come swooping by and stealing the little bacon pieces. Andrew likes bacon too.

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Then after the bacon, is the egg layer:

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Then whipped cream, and an assortment of fresh fruits:

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The Photography

This was a hard one. I wanted to take the photo outside to get the beautiful natural light hitting the fruit. But I was using fresh whipped cream, so I only had 5 minutes to quickly shoot. Here are more photos of the final product, with some photo commentary…which is your favorite?

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The Ultimate Breakfast Pancake Recipe

recipe adapted from Savory Sweet Life

4 – 8? pancakes
1.5 cups of roasted potatoes
3 eggs, scrambled
1 lb. of cooked bacon
1 cup of whipped cream
1 cup of sliced strawberries
1/2 cup fresh blueberries
2 kiwi fruit, sliced
1 bunch fresh mint leaves
maple syrup, for serving

Instructions:
Lay the first pancake down on a plate or serving platter. Add a layer of roasted potatoes all the way to the edge. Add another pancake and add the scrambled eggs. Add the third pancake and add your bacon. Add the final pancake. At this point if everything is cold, you will want to microwave everything for 3 minutes right before serving. Spread a layer of whipped cream, arrange strawberries, kiwi, blueberries and mint. Serve with maple syrup on the side.

To make the pancakes:
recipe from Mark Bittman, NY Times

2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon sugar, optional
2 eggs
1 1/2 to 2 cups milk
2 tablespoons melted and cooled butter (optional), plus unmelted butter for cooking, or use neutral oil
Preparation
1. Heat an 8-inch frying pan over medium-low heat. In a bowl, mix together dry ingredients. Beat eggs into 1 1/2 cups milk, then stir in 2 tablespoons melted cooled butter, if using it. Gently stir this mixture into dry ingredients, mixing only enough to moisten flour; don’t worry about a few lumps. If batter seems thick, add a little more milk.
2. Place a teaspoon of butter or oil on griddle or skillet. When butter foam subsides or oil shimmers, ladle batter onto griddle or skillet, making 8-inch pancakes. For this Breakfast Pan”cake” recipe, we’ll be making 4 pancakes) Adjust heat as necessary; usually, first batch will require higher heat than subsequent batches. Flip pancakes after bubbles rise to surface and bottoms brown, after 2 to 4 minutes.
3. Cook until second side is lightly browned. Serve, or hold on an ovenproof plate in a 200-degree oven for up to 15 minutes.

To make the roasted potatoes:
1 pound of small red potatoes, cut in 1/2-inch cubes
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
2 teaspoons freshly minced parsley
generous pinch of salt
freshly ground black pepper

Preheat the oven to 425F. Scatter the potatoes onto a baking sheet. With your hands, toss with the olive oil, garlic and parsley. Sprinkle salt and pepper. Spread out the potatoes so that they are in a single, even layer. Roast for 35-40 minutes, or until the potatoes are cooked through and browned.

To make the scrambled eggs:
3 extra-large eggs
salt and pepper
1 tablespoon butter

Beat the eggs in a large bowl and season with salt and pepper. Heat a large frying pan over medium heat with the butter. When the butter is bubbling, swirl to coat the pan. Add the eggs and using a spatula, gently stir to scramble. Once the eggs are set, immediately remove from the heat.

To make the bacon:
1 pound uncooked bacon

Preheat your oven to 400F. Lay a baking rack on top of a baking sheet. Lay the bacon slices on top of the rack and cook for 10-15 minutes until crispy.

***

A big thanks to Miss Attitude for making this whole thing happen and to Alice of Savory Sweet Life for the inspiration!

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Wasabi Smashed Potatoes from Bitchin Kitchen http://steamykitchen.com/4147-wasabi-smashed-potatoes.html http://steamykitchen.com/4147-wasabi-smashed-potatoes.html#comments Fri, 19 Jun 2009 03:52:33 +0000 http://steamykitchen.com/?p=4147 I don’t know how to quite describe Nadia G. I guess simply put… she scares the freakin’ fava beans outta me. And I love it. Nadia is the creator, writer and host of BitchinKitchen.tv. This girl’s sexy, sassy, “rawk ‘n roll” but honey, she can cook gefelte fish dumplins better than your bubbe. Yes, even wearing strip-teasin’ heels, fishnets and ...

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I don’t know how to quite describe Nadia G. I guess simply put… she scares the freakin’ fava beans outta me.

And I love it.

Nadia is the creator, writer and host of BitchinKitchen.tv. This girl’s sexy, sassy, “rawk ‘n roll” but honey, she can cook gefelte fish dumplins better than your bubbe. Yes, even wearing strip-teasin’ heels, fishnets and a fur coat. Add a cast of sidekicks: Hans, the oiled up muscle man, Panos, the Greek fishguy and the Israeli spice agent who’s name is unpronouncable – and it’s an over-the-top, fast-paced cooking show designed for the next generation of lifestyle entertainment. In fact, so good that Food Network Canada bought the show and will be producing an entire season of half-hour Bitchin Kitchen shows.

But 30-minutes is all that Nadia has in common with Rachael Ray. Nadia is certainly not the typical, cutesy girl-next door…more like the ultra-hip, feminine power who throws around Italian-American slang like nobody’s bidness and would shkiaff the smile offa RR’s face!

Well, if you’re curious about Bitchin Kitchen, go to www.bitchinkitchen.tv to watch all of her webisodes or check out her brand new book, bitchin-kitchenThe Bitchin’ Kitchen Cookbook: Rock Your Kitchen – And Let The Boys Clean Up The Mess (and yes, the book includes a slang dictionary.) In the meantime, we can just hope that she’s not too naughty for Food Network America and perhaps she’ll get picked up here. That network could use a little more attitude and sass.

I chatted with Nadia last month and baby, this woman is the real deal. Fun, quirky and a definitely a business minded. If you haven’t seen any of her videos yet, let me introduce you to one of my favorite episodes….

Did someone say Bitchin Kitchen Gefelte Fish?

Step-By-Step Wasabi Smashed Potatoes

First you boil them potatoes until fork-tender. Which means it’s done when you stick a small paring knife into the center of a potato and the knife easily slips right back out with no resistance. Why I call it “fork-tender” beats me. Then you smash it up a bit with a handy potato masher. Just smash enough to break up the potato.

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Okay, lets talk about wasabi. Did you know that the bright green wasabi paste that you get of all Japanese restaurants is really horseradish with food coloring? Yeah. Don’t you feel duped? Real wasabi is pretty expensive and difficult to grow outside of Japan. I found this at the market the other day, the front says “Genuine Wasabi in a Tube” in the back does say “Wasabi” as its first ingredient. But notice that it does still have food coloring and a bunch of crap that I can’t pronounce. So you might be asking, “if this is really genuine wasabi…why the need for food coloring?”

Because real wasabi is very pale light light green. And we Americans are so used to the day-glo shade of green wasabi that many would probably think the light stuff is crap.

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Well, whatever you use, just add some wasabi paste to the lightly mashed potatoes. The amount of wasabi is up to you, I adore the tingly sinus heat so I use a lot. Also add milk or cream and butter.

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With swift and purposeful motions, smash and stir a couple more times. It’s important to not over stir, as shall end up with gooey smashed potatoes. You want light, fluffy. Not goopy gooey. Sprinkle with chopped green onions.

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And then drizzle just a bit of soy sauce on each serving.

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And there you have it, Wasabi Smashed Potatoes.

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Wasabi Smashed Potatoes Recipe

Adapted from The Bitchin’ Kitchen Cookbook: Rock Your Kitchen – And Let The Boys Clean Up The Mess

1 1/2 pounds potatoes
2 tablespoons butter
5 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon – 1 tablespoon wasabi paste
1 stalk green onion, minced
1 tablespoon soy sauce

Place the potatoes in a pot and cover with cool water to cover by 1 inch. Bring the pot to a boil and cook for 15-20 minutes, or until the potatoes are cooked through. To check, pierce a potato with a paring knife. If the knife slides easily in and out, the potates are done. Drain and return the potatoes to the pot. Smash the potatoes with a fork or potato masher. Add the butter, milk and wasabi paste. Mix to incorporate but don’t mix overmix otherwise they’ll be pasty and pasty mashed potatoes suck.

Shkiaffing it together: Portion out the potatoes on plates, throw on a three-finger pinch of minced green onions and a dribble of soy sauce.

serves 4 as side dish

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Duck Breast with Sweet and Sour Cranberry Chutney Recipe http://steamykitchen.com/1810-duck-breast-with-sweet-and-sour-cranberry-chutney-recipe.html http://steamykitchen.com/1810-duck-breast-with-sweet-and-sour-cranberry-chutney-recipe.html#comments Tue, 16 Dec 2008 20:16:14 +0000 http://steamykitchen.com/blog/?p=1810 Ming Tsai’s Duck Breast with Sweet and Sour Cranberry Chutney I had a chance to chat with Asian superstar chef Ming Tsai a few weeks ago – andI’m too lame to learn how to turn our recorded phone convo (.wav format) into a podcast. Too busy too figure it out too! Plus, I’m a highly VISUAL person (can you tell?) ...

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Ming Tsai’s Duck Breast with Sweet and Sour Cranberry Chutney

I had a chance to chat with Asian superstar chef Ming Tsai a few weeks ago – andI’m too lame to learn how to turn our recorded phone convo (.wav format) into a podcast. Too busy too figure it out too! Plus, I’m a highly VISUAL person (can you tell?) and anything auditory does. not. compute.

Thanks to Lenny, the podcast with Chef Ming Tsai is up!

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Duck Breast with Sweet and Sour Cranberry Chutney Recipe

My parents are Buddhists but they’ve lived here in the United States since 1967 and have celebrated Christmas with food and presents every single year. When my brother and I were little, we believed in Santa Claus until the day I found my mother’s secret hiding place for gifts. I didn’t let on that I knew about the stash, as I totally enjoyed sneaking into the walk-in closet and wading my way through the piles of clothes, blankets and luggage to get to the booty in the back.

I’d just stare at the blonde Cabbage Patch Kid and Barbie doll convertible, caressing the box and counting down the days til Christmas Eve. So yeah, Christmas more about new toys back then and not so much the religious stuff.

On the other hand, my in-laws take Christmas seriously, and spend much of the month of December decking out the house with holiday lights and trinkets. You couldn’t sneeze without knocking over an angel or shorting out the dancing Santa.

At our home, I’d like to think we have a nice blend of traditions. For the past six years, we’ve hosted Christmukkah, as our good friends are Jewish and all but the Chinese take-out places are closed! My in-laws also come down to be with the family, and each time they make the trip they stuff an entire suitcase with more holiday decorations to hand down. I love it when Scott would show the boys the ornaments that were so carefully preserved and say, “I made this wooden reindeer in first grade!”

I got a chance to chat with celebrity Chef Ming Tsai and ask him about his holiday plans – he’s preparing a slow roasted lamb for his family and gave me some tips for my Christmukkah meal. I’m making Ming’s Seared Duck Breast with Sweet and Sour Cranberry Chutney from his self-published book called Ming’s Master Recipes (www.ming.com). I tested the recipe a couple of weeks ago and holy holiday cheer, it was fabulous!

Ming says that the key to searing duck breast is to render, or melt away the fat first. This savory, delicious fat is used to cook the duck and also saute the potatoes. The Sweet and Sour Cranberry Chutney is the perfect blend of Ming’s signature east and west cooking.

Duck Breast with Sweet and Sour Cranberry Chutney Recipe

Ming Tsai’s Seared Duck Breast with Sweet and Sour Cranberry Chutney Recipe

Adapted from Ming’s Master Recipes by Ming Tsai

serves 4

4 duck breasts, fat trimmed
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2-4 Yukon gold potatoes, either boiled or baked skin on 45 minutes at 350F
Sweet and Sour Cranberry Chutney (recipe below)

Use a sharp knife to score the skin on the duck breast several times, making 3-5 slashes on the diagonal then rotating knife to slash the other way, to make a slanted checkerboard of sorts. Score all the way through the fat, but take care not to cut through to the meat.

Place the duck breasts, skin side down in a large frying pan and then heat the frying pan on low heat. As the pan heats up, the fat will begin melting (rendering). Let fry until the skin is brown and crispy, about 7-10 minutes. Turn the heat to high and flip the duck meat side down. Fry for 3-5 minutes for medium rare. Flip the duck breasts again and sear for 3-5 minutes to re-crisp the skin. Let rest for 5 minutes before slicing. Transfer to a plate, meat side down and let rest. In the same pan, with the luscious duck fat, turn the heat to high and add the potato slices.Serve with Sweet and Sour Cranberry Chutney.

For the Sweet and Sour Cranberry Chutney
1 red onion, cut into 1/2 inch dice
1 cup dried cranberries, chopped
1/4 cup sugar
1 cup rice vinegar
1 tablespoon cooking oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Heat a sauté pan over high heat. When hot, add the oil and swirl to coat. Add the onions and sauté until soft, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Add the cranberries, sugar and the rice vinegar. Simmer on medium-low for 10 minutes, until most of the liquid is absorbed. When cool, transfer to container and cover, store in refrigerator for up to two weeks.

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