Steamy Kitchen Recipes | RSS Feed http://steamykitchen.com Steamy Kitchen Food Blog: fast recipes, simple recipes, with fresh ingredients to create delicious meals. Thu, 30 Apr 2015 14:38:03 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.2.1 Thai Chicken Coconut Soup (Tom Ka Gai) http://steamykitchen.com/3133-thai-chicken-coconut-soup-tom-ka-gai.html http://steamykitchen.com/3133-thai-chicken-coconut-soup-tom-ka-gai.html#comments Sun, 19 Apr 2009 14:26:06 +0000 http://steamykitchen.com/blog/?p=3133 So a couple of weeks ago I was chatting online with one of my friends who has a food blog but doesn’t go by her real name so that she can hide her real identity. Because you know, food blogging is so much sexier when you’re STEALTH blogging. She said some people, herself included is freaked out about their names ...

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So a couple of weeks ago I was chatting online with one of my friends who has a food blog but doesn’t go by her real name so that she can hide her real identity. Because you know, food blogging is so much sexier when you’re STEALTH blogging. She said some people, herself included is freaked out about their names being revealed for fear that their real names show up in Google search engines.

I’ve never been shy about talking about my life or my family…and I really don’t care to blur out my face nor do I put a black bar over my eyes like they do in back of magazines to show fashion DON’Ts. My kids get no cutesy, clever nicknames. Who knows if one day this whole blog will blow up in my face! I’m sure some of the things I’ve posted about my kids that are cute-ha-ha-funny will someday be cha-ching! for the therapist. Better set aside some money now. Seriously. But that’s just who I am. Loud, brash and confessional.

This is why I love blogs and books that aren’t bashful about opening their front door and welcoming us in with open arms. When I was in Los Angeles last year, I stopped by the soon-to-be-closed (sniff sniff) The Cook’s Library Bookstore where I picked up a copy of apples-for-jamTessa Kiros’ Apples For Jam, A Colorful Cookbook fully intending it to be a gift for a friend, but after an afternoon alone with the cookbook, I decided to keep it for myself and bought her a bag of donuts instead. What a good friend I am. (WHAAAT? Hey, at least I didn’t arrive empty-handed!)

Tessa’s publisher, Andrew McMeel sent me a copy of her latest book, falling-cloudberries Falling Cloudberries, A World of Family Recipes which is part of Gourmet’s Cookbook Club. Tessa Kiro was born in London to a Finnish mother and Greek father, has lived in South Africa and worked as chef in Sydney, Athens, Mexico and London. Her life of global travels inspired this book with nearly 400 pages of recipes, stories and stunning color photographs (170 recipes, 185 color photos).

I wanted to share a recipe with you from her Falling Cloudberries book – Tom Ka Gai Soup, or Thai Chicken Coconut Soup. I’m sure you’ve had this soup before if you’re a fan of Thai food. The Tom Ka Gai soup is warm, tingly and creamy.

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About Kaffir Limes Leaves (or Makrut)

Thai Chicken Coconut Soup (Tom Ka Gai) uses fresh kaffir lime leaves to give it that unmistakable Thai flavor and aroma. It’s citrusy, bright and its aroma is as exuberant as its taste.

And I’m lucky enough that in Florida the Kaffir Lime Tree grows like crazy. Even neglected, it looks like this:

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While my tree doesn’t bear any fruit (I think something called “neglect” might have something to do with it) the leaves are plentiful. And the leaves are the valuable part of the tree anyways. Another name for Kaffir Lime Leaves is “Makrut,” as I just found out that the word “Kaffir” is a deragatory term (I’m off to research and find out the details on that to confirm).

How to use Kaffir Lime Leaves

The Kaffir Lime Leaves come in doubles. It’s a pretty thick leaf with a tough spine in the middle. The Kaffir Lime Leaf is used whole and discarded after cooking, unless you cut into very thin slivers.

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For Thai Chicken Coconut Soup (Tom Ka Gai), fold the Kaffir Lime Leaf in half along the spine and then tear, stopping at the tough spine.

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So that when you open it, the Kaffir Lime Leaves stays whole. This makes it easy to pick out and discard after cooking. Tearing the Kaffir Lime Leaves opens the aroma and flavors. Now scratch the screen and a whiff…WOW!

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Just throw the leaves, torn and whole into your soup, cook, then pick out and discard. Well, I guess you don’t have to. You can leave the Kaffir Lime Leaves in the soup and make your guests pick it out.

Substitutions for Kaffir Lime Leaves

If you don’t have access to fresh Kaffir Lime Leaves, you can find them at the Asian markets frozen or dried whole. You can also substitute Kaffir Lime Leaves with thick strips of lime peel. Take a whole lime and a vegetable peeler. Peel thick strips. Use your hands to tear a few places along the strip or just crush/fold the strip to bruise it a bit to release its flavor and aroma. Discard after cooking. Use one 2-inch x 1-inch strip of lime peel for every Kaffir Lime Leaf the recipe calls for.

Thai Chicken Coconut Soup (Tom Ka Gai Recipe)

Photo and recipe of Thai Chicken Coconut Soup (Tom Ka Gai) courtesy of my buddies at Andrews McMeel Publishing. A note on galangal/ginger: while often used together, they are not the same ingredient and taste very different! Many recipes will have you substitute ginger for galangal (which can be difficult to find), which isn’t really a “substitute.” Think of it as – if you can’t get galangal, ginger would be great in this soup too. Find galangal at the Asian market – sometimes you can get fresh galangal otherwise you may find it frozen. ~jaden

Tessa’s intro: “I just wouldn’t cope with not knowing how to make some version of this soup. I love it. You can add a few mushrooms, a couple of fresh spinach leaves or some slices of zucchini in with the chicken. Also wonderful instead of the chicken is to cook some large, shelled shrimp on a barbecue or grill pan and toss them into the soup just before serving. The fish sauce is the salt in this soup so adjust the quantities according to your taste (and the same with the chile). I like it not too strong. Keep the cilantro stems in your freezer to add flavor to a broth or stew.”

Serves 4

1 1/2 inch piece of galangal or ginger, peeled and sliced
small bunch fresh cilantro with roots
4 kaffir lime leaves (makrut), torn
1 stem lemongrass, halved lengthways
3 tablespoons fish sauce
juice of 2 small limes
1 3/4 cups coconut milk
1/2 pound skinless chicken breast, cut into thin strips
1 red chile (chilli), seeded and sliced

Put the galangal, cilantro roots, lime leaves, lemongrass and 4 cups of water in a saucepan and bring to the boil. Add the fish sauce and lime juice, decrease the heat, and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove the cilantro roots. Add the coconut milk, bring back to a boil and boil for a couple of minutes. Add
the chicken pieces and cook for just a minute or so, until the chicken is soft and milky looking and cooked through. Throw in the chile and mix well. Serve in bowls with the cilantro leaves roughly chopped and scattered over the top.

— Recipe courtesy of falling-cloudberries Falling Cloudberries, A World of Family Recipes by Tessa Kiros/Andrews McMeel Publishing

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This Week’s Steamy Kitchen Giveaway

Two weeks ago, I gave away a zojirushi rice cooker, this week, the winner of art-and-soul-baking The Art and Soul of Baking is lakotakat@_.com!


And now I’m giving away a copy of falling-cloudberries Falling Cloudberries, A World of Family Recipes by Tessa Kiros. To enter, just sign up for the Steamy Kitchen email newsletter (form is below). Each week, I give away cool prizes to my loyal readers as a thank you.

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Thai Curry Beef Skewers + Guest Writer for Martha Stewart http://steamykitchen.com/1417-thai-grilled-beef-skewers.html http://steamykitchen.com/1417-thai-grilled-beef-skewers.html#comments Wed, 10 Sep 2008 14:17:59 +0000 http://steamykitchen.com/blog/?p=1417 I’m a guest writer over at Martha Stewart Everyday Food! Have you been to their website? They’ve got thousands of recipes, all of them simple and perfect for dinner tonight. My kids made Thai Curry Beef Skewers and Grilled Banana with Dark Chocolate for them. Come on over to Martha Stewart Everyday Food’s website and take a look. The recipe ...

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I’m a guest writer over at Dinner Tonight Martha Stewart Everyday Food! Have you been to their website? They’ve got thousands of recipes, all of them simple and perfect for dinner tonight.

My kids made Thai Curry Beef Skewers and Grilled Banana with Dark Chocolate for them. Come on over to Martha Stewart Everyday Food’s website and take a look. The recipe for the MUST MAKE dessert inspired by the lovely Andreaa is over there.

I love it when my two young sons — 3 years old and 5 years old — help me in the kitchen. It’s good to nurture an interest in responsible nutrition and teach them correct food pairings, like how super-thin, shatter-crisp Lay’s potato chips are much better stacked between a hamburger bun and patty than something big and smushy like a chocolate Ho-Ho.

We have one small rolling stool in the kitchen perfect for just one little boy to stand on. Why not two? Well, because physically, my two arms and two eyes can keep track of only one child within arms reach of a smorgasbord of spices and seasonings. Trust me when I tell you that behind my back, they’ve dumped a jar of chili powder in the fried rice just because it needed more color. Well, that evening magically turned into a Happy Meal night. Which, now looking back, seems like an awfully suspicious trick that I’m sure a certain trouble-stirring uncle taught them recently.

But the kids do love to come tinker in the kitchen, especially when it involves food on a stick. You could put anything on a stick and my kids will think it’s like the best meal ever. How do you think I got them to eat brussels sprouts? You skewer them between chocolate dipped marshmallows. To get to the next marshmallow, you’ve got to eat that brussels sprout.

Once Andrew heard we were making Thai Curry Beef Skewers with his favorite fruit in the world, pineapple, on sticks, he went totally nuts and called dibs on skewering duty. One piece of pineapple for the Thai Curry Beef Skewer, one piece of pineapple for Andrew. One for the Thai Curry Beef Skewer, two for Andrew. It took two cans of pineapples to finish the job, but I guess he got his recommended vitamin C ration for the week.

Andrew Making Beef Skewers

Grilled Thai Curry Beef Skewers Recipe

Serves 4
Inspired by Martha Stewart Everyday Food

I have tweaked Martha Stewart Everyday Food’s Grilled Thai Curry Beef Skewers recipe just a little, adding fresh lime juice and using pineapple juice in place of some of the honey and brown sugar. The pineapple juice will also help tenderize the meat. Thai curry paste can be found in any Asian market and in the international aisle of your supermarket. Although Thai curry is normally spicy, we’re using only 1 tablespoon of the curry paste so that even the little ones can enjoy this dish. If you do enjoy spice, feel free to add another tablespoon to the recipe. Store the remaining paste in a covered jar or plastic container in the refrigerator. It will last several weeks if properly stored.

Grilled Thai Curry Beef Skewers Recipe

Ingredients
1 can (20 ounces) pineapple chunks, 2 tablespoons of the juice reserved
2 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons packed brown sugar
1/4 cup soy sauce
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
1 teaspoon vegetable, canola, or peanut oil
1 tablespoon Thai red curry paste
1 1/2 pounds top sirloin beef, cut into 1 inch cubes
1 red onion, quartered, layers separated

Directions
1. If grilling outdoors, prepare your grill for high, direct heat. If broiling in your kitchen, heat the broiler with rack set 4 inches from heat. Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil. Soak 8 wooden skewers (12 inches each) in a pan of water.

2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the 2 tablespoons of the reserved pineapple juice, honey, brown sugar, soy sauce, lime juice, oil, and red curry paste. Reserve half of the sauce for serving (pour into a separate bowl.)

3. Add the beef to the marinade and let sit for 10 minutes at room temperature. Thread the beef, onion, and pineapple onto skewers. Grill on your outdoor grill or under broiler for 5 to 7 minutes, flipping halfway, until medium-rare.

Andrew enjoying Thai Curry Beef Skewers

Andrew enjoying Thai Curry Beef Skewers

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