Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Our Recipe #7: What would you do if you have leftover beer? - How to use wok by Sally

Dear members,

Last week I just opened a can of beer left from a meetup several weeks ago. I usually don't drink beer because I've never developed a liking of beer, but that particular night I wanted to do something different to take my mind off something.sad

So I opened a can, and then I didn't like it as usual....So I had almost a whole can of beer unconsumed...But I don't really want to waste any food, that's my upbringing and culture, so I couldn't pour the beer down the drain and it was still sitting in my fridge becoming a real eyesore for me every time I see it..confused

And today I decided to attack this problem by organizing my thoughts about this leftover beer.

Have you ever been in the same kind of situation?

What would you do if you have leftover beer?

....Here are my ideas.

1. Beef cooked in beer

Especially Belgian people seem to know how to cook tough beef with beer as beer has tenderizing effect...

2. Pot Roast in Beer Marinade

3. Chinese chicken wings cooked in beer

4. Chicken thigh and vegetables cooked in beer with bay leaf

5. Chili

My chili recipe calls for Dark Ale, not regular beer, though.

6. Japanese miso pickles

Tonight I'll introduce Chinese chicken wings recipe. I got this from my Chinese friend. She's from Beijing, and was a good cook. It's past tense because she went back to Japan with her Japanese husband.. And I lost contact with them, which is really sad and one day I want to see her and her family again. They had two boys and because my sons were same age, they played together many times. Good old days for me..

Anyways, this is a very easy and simple recipe. Everything is eyeball, though.

Do you own a wok? If you do, that's very nice. If you don't, you can use other kind of pan, but it doesn't hurt to invest some money and buy this very versatile tool...As a matter of fact, I bought my wok at IKEA. And it cost only $10! Can you believe it?! A very gook kind of wok with nice handle...It also came with a metal strainer that can be hooked on the edge of the wok, so it's very handy when you deep fry and put the fried food on the strainer to drain excess oil...

To use wok the correct way is to heat it real hot at first. Then add oil and heat it again. The art of fire...that's what Chinese cuisine is called and the point is that you want to cook with high heat so that the food is crispy and tasty, and never stick to the side of the wok....

So, if you own a wok, just take out of the cabinet where it has been hiding, and put it on the stove. With high heat you warm up the wok to the point of smoke coming out. Then turn off the heat and add oil and distribute the oil by swirling to cover the entire surface of the wok. Then discard excess oil.

A wok is usually not non-stick, meaning that without oil the food will stick! So it's important to use oil and season the wok on the hight heat so that the ingredients won't stick when you add them to the wok.

Reheat the oiled wok to really hot, but not smoking, and add chicken wings. You should hear the sizzle, otherwise the wok is not heated up enough and the meat is going to stick! Cook the chicken on both sides giving nice brown color, and then you add soy sauce, sugar, and the beer. Now the beer is making huge bubbles and the sound should be music to your earwink

After a while, the foam will disappear and you want to cook until the chicken is tender. Try not to burn the chicken as the sugar-soy sauce combination is prone to burn easily, so you have to watch. At the last minute add black pepper according to your taste, then serve with rice!

I guess I should really consider posting photos and videos. It's so much easier than writing...Every time I cook, I should start taking pictures, too..

Now it's my time to go to bed.

Good night, and talk to you tomorrow,



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