Friday, November 20, 2009

Iron Chef Blogger Challenge Coconut Milk

For my first Iron Chef Blogger Challenge Carrie chose coconut milk. I have not ever used coconut milk before.

I love to bake, but since that's mostly all I do in the kitchen I thought I should choose something savory. I did choose something savory and I baked...
I found two recipes at; Brazilian Soup and Pan de Coco.

Brazilian Soup

2 tablespoons cooking oil (I use EVOO)
1 onion, chopped
1 green pepper, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
3/4 cup long grain rice
1/4 teaspoon red-pepper flake
1 3/4 teaspoon salt
1 3/4 cup crushed tomatoes in thick puree
5 cups water
1 cup canned unsweetened coconut milk
1 1/2 pounds shrimp peeled and cut in half
1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black-pepper
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/2 cup fresh cilantro, chopped


In a large pot , heat the oil over moderately low heat. Add the onion, green pepper, and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables start to soften (about 10 mins).
Add rice, red-pepper flakes, salt, tomatoes, and water to the pot. Bring to a boil and cook until the rice is almost tender (about 10 mins).

Stir the coconut milk into the soup, bring back to a simmer and then stir in shrimp. Simmer, stirring occasionally until the shrimp are just done, 3-5 minutes. Stir in the black-pepper, lemon juice, and cilantro.

Pan de Coco
2 packages of active dry yeast
2 teaspoons sugar
1/2 cup warm water
5-5 1/2 cups flour
1/2 cup shortening
1 13 oz can of coconut milk
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons pure coconut oil

Stir together first three ingredients and let sit for 10-15 mins until bubbly and almost doubled in size. In a large bowl mix 5 cups flour with salt. Make a well in the center and add shortening and yeast mixture. Mix with hands. Add coconut milk and mix. Add more flour if dough sticks to your hands. A dough that is moist and on the wet side is desired. Pour onto cleaned counter top and knead for 3 to 4 minutes. Add coconut oil. Knead another 4-5 minutes until smooth. Let rest 45 minutes or until doubled in size. Cut into 24 small rounds 2" in diameter. Shape and put onto cookie sheet. Let rise another 45 minutes then back at 375 for 20-25 minutes.

I really enjoyed this soup. I think maybe I would have added another 1/4 teaspoon red-pepper to spice it up a little more, but it was really flavorful. The coconut milk gave the broth a really nice texture.

If you are going to use shrimp I would fully recommend buying the already peeled and veined stuff. I spent perhaps 20 minutes taking care of that, not fun!

The rolls were okay, the reminded me of a short cake. I would not make them again, it was totally not worth the effort!

I was totally excited to try something new ( and so was JD) and I can't wait for next week!

Monday, November 16, 2009

So I'm going to give this a try!

So many of my friends are blogging these days, and I find that I drop by their blogs quite often. I love seeing what's new in the lives of people I don't get to see regularly anymore. The thought came to me that if I like being brought up to speed on what's going on with them, perhaps they'd like a glimpse at our new life in Wisconsin.

So here it goes friends. I'm going to see if I can be a good blogger, (i.e. do this more than once!)and give my friends and family the photo updates that they've been demanding.

I'm sure that if I get a comment here and there it will be encouraging hint hint!