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Fast Thai Sticky Rice with Meaty Vegetable Sauce

Fast Thai Sticky Rice with Meaty Vegetable Sauce     www.morewinelesswhines.com

Fast Thai Sticky Rice with Meaty Vegetable Sauce

Baby, it’s cold outside – but starting to warm up!

We are beginning to see glimpses of spring.  I am looking forward to the warmer weather and  actually being able to run outside without risking life and limb on black ice.  I am excited for long walks with my puppy.  I can’t wait to grill outdoors and avoid setting off my poorly ventilated kitchen’s smoke alarm.  During this intermediate time in March, I am flexing my “make simple foods fast” muscles.

Fast Thai Sticky Rice with Meaty Vegetable Sauce  www.morewinelesswhines.com

Fast Thai Sticky Rice with Meaty Vegetable Sauce

I am all for spending hours in the kitchen and preparing incredible meals for family and friends.  The reality is that time keeps slipping through my fingertips… For everyday cooking, there are simpler foods that I really need to learn how to make and enjoy.  Enter Fast Thai Sticky Rice with Meaty Vegetable Sauce.  This recipe hails from  How to Cook Everything Fast, Mark Bittman’s latest cookbook.  It is very good.  I am simplifying it even further.  You really don’t have to use Thai Sticky Rice.  You could use some leftover white Jasmine rice and this will still taste delicious.  I’ll leave the rice decision up to you!

Fast Thai Sticky Rice with Meaty Vegetable Sauce    www.morewinelesswhines.com

Fast Thai Sticky Rice with Meaty Vegetable Sauce

My husband scrunches up his nose whenever I mention “fish sauce” or bring it out from the bottom shelf of our refrigerator door.  The truth is the stuff smells like fermented anchovies.  It imparts an incredible flavor to this dish – one that would be very difficult to recreate.

Fast Thai Sticky Rice with Meaty Vegetable Sauce    www.morewinelesswhines.com

Fast Thai Sticky Rice with Meaty Vegetable Sauce

Fast Thai Sticky Rice with Meaty Vegetable Sauce

Barely adapted from How to Cook Everything Fast by Mark Bittman

1.5 c short-grain sushi rice
sea salt
2 large carrots, diced
2 celery stalks, diced
1/2 large onion, diced
2 T canola oil
1 lb. ground pork
freshly ground black pepper
1 fresh hot green chile (I used serrano). sliced into quarters lengthwise, seeds & membranes removed
2 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
1″ piece fresh ginger, peeled and minced
2 c coconut milk
2 tsp. fish sauce
1 lime, cut into wedges
optional: Thai or regular basil for garnish

1. Put rice in a medium saucepan with 5 c water and a big pinch of salt. Bring to a boil. When water boils, cook over high heat, stirring frequently, adding more water if needed, until rice is soft and forms a thick risotto like mixture, 10 minutes. When rice is done, spoon it out into 4 shallow bowls.

2. Meanwhile, heat 2 T canola oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. When oil is hot, add ground pork, carrot, celery, onion, and a little sea salt & pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until pork browns and vegetables soften, 10 minutes. Stir chile, garlic and ginger into the skillet.

3. Stir coconut milk and fish sauce into pork and vegetables. Bring to a boil. Let liquid bubble until it reduces to a thick sauce. Taste, adjust seasoning, and remove from heat. Spoon over bowls of rice. Squeeze a wedge of lime juice over each bowl.

Optional: Garnish with a lime wedge and basil.

Enjoy!

Fast Thai Sticky Rice with Meaty Vegetable Sauce       www.morewinelesswhines.com

Fast Thai Sticky Rice with Meaty Vegetable Sauce

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Girl and the Goat Magic Green Beans – A Recipe and Experience

Sautéing green and yellow wax beans    www.morewinelesswhines.com

Sautéing green and yellow wax beans

Please forgive my absence.  I have been a little under the weather lately.

One of the many restaurants that is on my “must try” list is Girl and the Goat (plus the Little Goat  Diner) in Chicago.  Given that the reservation wait for a seat at Girl and the Goat can take months and the fact that I have minimal patience, I decided to take a different route.

My local Standard Market hosted an event featuring Stephanie Izard, her book, Girl in the Kitchen,  and a recipe demo.

My favorite recipe take-away from the event?  Magic Beans.  I arrived early to the event, but was still shuttled far back in the throngs of eager onlookers ready to meet Stephanie.  I did not stay to shake hands or even to have a book signed.  I simply stayed long enough for the Magic Beans recipe, went home and made them.

Sautéing green and yellow wax beans with Shallots   www.morewinelesswhines.com

Sautéing green and yellow wax beans with Shallots

I found both the regular green beans and yellow wax beans at the Farmers Market earlier in the morning.  Here is an interesting fact:  my husband hates green beans.   When he saw the beans in the fridge he started moping about how much he dislikes them.  I asked said husband to snap the ends off the beans while I made the vinaigrette/sauce.  He complained the whole time.  I was silent and squeezed the lemons and measured out the remaining ingredients into my Cuisinart for the vinaigrette/sauce.

Girl and the Goat Magic Beans    www.morewinelesswhines.com

Girl and the Goat Magic Beans

My interpretation of this recipe is simple.  You start with good beans, sauté them with 1/2 c. finely minced shallots, then add in the sauce, stirring occasionally, and let the mixture steam away until finished.  You could mix some vinaigrette with Mayonaisse and drizzle on top if you like, but we found that unnecessary.  In the original recipe, which is posted HERE, cashews are recommended.  I used toasted pistachios and they were excellent.

I placed these beans in a serving bowl when they were done cooking.  I turned around, grabbed my camera and reached back for the bowl.  It was not there.  Instead, it was propped against one of Mark’s hands while the other hand held a perfectly cooked green bean.  He would not give me the bowl back.  I finally grabbed it and hastily snapped a few photos.  Needless to say, he liked these green beans.  I think you and your family will, too.

Enjoy!

Magic Beans

Original Recipe by Stephanie Izard can be found HERE.

1/2 c. freshly squeezed lemon juice (juice of 4-5 small organic lemons)
1/2 c. + 2 T fish sauce (Three Crabs Brand)
1/4 c. + 2 T low sodium soy sauce
1 heaping T dijon mustard
1 tsp.            sriracha
5 small garlic cloves
4 oz + olive oil (canola oil would be fine here, too)

freshly ground black pepper for seasoning

2 lbs green beans and/or yellow wax beans
1/2 c. shallots, finely minced
2 T. canola oil

Optional:
1/2 c. pistachios, toasted & chopped

Sauce:  Combine all ingredients except olive oil in a Cuisinart.  Blend for 10 seconds until smooth.  Dip in the tip of a spoon or a green bean and taste the mixture.  Adjust seasoning if needed (more acid = lemon juice, more heat = Sriracha, etc).  Put lid back on Cuisinart and slowly drizzle in the oil through the feed tube until emulsified, pulsing the blade to thoroughly bend everything together. Taste, adding more oil as needed.

Beans: Heat 2 T. canola oil in a large, wide rimmed sauté pan.  Add shallots and sauté a few minutes.  Add beans.  Sauté 5 minutes longer, stirring occasionally, until softened.  Pour in enough of the sauce to cover the beans and allow to steam, stirring occasionally, over medium heat.  Watch that the sauce does not burn.  (Note: It will burn if you do not stir and allow the heat to get too high).

Transfer beans to a serving dish and garnish with pistachios or other nuts (optional).  Enjoy!

Serving Notes:

  • I served these beans for dinner with grilled, marinated chicken breasts and a watermelon salad.
  • They would be great with pork tenderloin, short ribs, corn on the cob or just about any dish you can dream up.
  • I like these served with a wine called Vouvray.  Experiment and let me know if you find any better pairings!

 

 

 

 

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