Friday, May 14, 2010

Tunisian Short Ribs

       Fine Cooking ran an interesting article about short ribs in its February March 2010 issue.  It invited the reader to invent their own recipe for those wonderfully slow-cooked pieces of falling-off-the-bone meat.   It gave options for the aromatics you use, with a range of spices and herbs and flavor boosters you chose to make your version. You then selected the deglazing liquid and the braising liquid itself. And finally, once the finished dish was ready, it recommended ‘finishes’ and garnishes.  You can see for yourself in this clever interactive recipe builder at
        I know it’s almost time to put the Short Rib recipes away and get out the grill.  But we still tucked into these ribs this past weekend and they were a big hit.  I followed Fine Cooking’s inspirations and made a couple of additions and substitutions to create something “Tunisian”. I could have gone with a Red Wine Braise or made them Hunter Style or Tuscan, or Provencal or even South-Western but “Tunisian” sounded unlike anything I’d done before.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Vietnamese Shrimp and Pork Belly with Sweet and Spicy Sauce

Ever since my last trip to Hong Kong, where, on our last night there, we went to a Vietnamese Restaurant called “Pho Lemon” (25 Elgin St. Central, TEL: 2523-8272) I have wanted to cook Vietnamese food.  There’s likely nowhere on earth where you can find such a confluence of Asian cuisine as there is in Hong Kong.  During my last trip there, we’d eaten Japanese, Korean, Malaysian and of course, Chinese food from Hunanese to Cantonese.  Fantastic food in some of the finest places in the city.   So when, on that particular night, I had a roast chicken that was one of the finest I had ever eaten, I was determined to learn how to cook it.