Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Cookin No. 18 - Guacamole and Salmon Cakes

After a few days of dreaming about guacamole, I finally decided to do something about it, and make some. My idea was guacamole stuffed tomatoes, so my souse chef, chris came over, and after a glass of wine for me, and a beer for her, we set forth to make some guac. Although, there was a slight detour in our cooking, when I cut into my tomatoes, there was… how should you say… growth. It appeared that my tomatoes were trying to grow more tomatoes within themselves. So after a quick run to the giant, we were back to cooking. I am convinced that I am one of the messiest cooks out there, because when I’m done cooking, half of the dish is all over the kitchen. When I made truffles, there was a nice layer of chocolate, and today, there was guacamole everywhere. But it came out tasting good, so I won’t complain, nothing a sponge won’t take care of. After the tomatoes were stuffed, there was a plenty of guacamole left, so I made some tortilla chips, and we gorged ourselves on the goodness.

Guacamole stuffed tomatoes (I will have to load pictures tomorrow):

3 avocados, halved, seeded and peeled
1 lime, juiced
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
½ Vidalia onion, diced
5 tomatoes with the insides scooped out
1 tablespoon chopped cilantro
1 clove garlic, minced

Put the avocados, lime juice, salt, cumin, onion, tomato innards, cilantro and garlic in the blender and rev that engine. Scoop the guacamole into the tomatoes, top with grated cheddar and put into the oven at 350o until the cheese is melted. Garnish with tortilla chips.

Tortilla chips:

1 tortilla
Olive oil

Cut the tortilla into 8 pieces, place on a cookie sheet and sprinkle with olive oil. With a pastry brush smooth out the olive oil, then sprinkle some salt over the slices. Turn the tortilla slices over and repeat the olive oil and salt. Place into an oven at 350o for about 10 minutes, until the tortillas are golden brown.

Plate and enjoy.

After I headed out to my parents house to help my father cook for dinner. We made Hong Kong Salmon cakes with baby Bok Choy. A delicious dish. I had salmon cakes once in my life before today, and I didn’t really like them, but these were amazing. I enjoy cooking with my father, we seem to be like to dynamic duo, arguing and laughing. A good time.

Hong Kong Salmon Cakes with Baby Bok Choy, courtesy of Tyler Florence:

Salmon Cakes:

1/4 cup peanut oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 shallot, minced
1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
1 to 2 red or green chiles, minced
1 1/2 pounds skinless boneless salmon fillets, cut in small cubes
1 cup fresh bread crumbs (4 slices white bread with crusts removed pulsed in the food processor)
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh cilantro leaves 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 lemon, juiced
1 large egg white
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons peanut oils

Bok Choy:

2 tablespoons peanut oil
2-inch piece fresh ginger
2 heads baby bok choy, halved lengthwise
1/4 cup water
3 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
1/4 cup oyster sauce
1/2 lemon, juiced
1 tablespoon brown sugar
Toasted sesame seeds,
chopped cilantro leaves,
and sliced green onion, for garnish

To make the salmon cakes:
Heat 2 tablespoons of the peanut oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the garlic, shallot, ginger, and chiles; saute for a few minutes to release the flavor. Remove from heat to cool slightly. In a mixing bowl, combine the salmon, bread crumbs, cilantro, mayonnaise, lemon juice and egg white. Scrape the garlic/ginger oil into the salmon mixture; season with salt and pepper. Fold the ingredients together gently but thoroughly, taking care not to mash the salmon too much. Using your hands, form the mixture into 4 salmon cakes, they should be moist and just hold together.

Coat a non-stick skillet with the 2 tablespoons of peanut oil and bring it to a slight smoke over medium heat. Fry the salmon cakes until brown, about 4 minutes on each side, turning carefully with a spatula. Keep warm on a plate lined with paper towels.

To make the bok choy:
Return the skillet to the heat and coat with the 2 tablespoons of peanut oil and heat until almost smoking. Split the piece of ginger open with a knife then whack it with the flat side of the knife. Lay the ginger pieces in the oil, cut-side down to let it start to perfume. Pan-fry the bok choy, cut-side down, for a couple of minutes to give it some color. Add the water and cook another minute to steam the bok choy; carefully remove it to a plate. Add the soy sauce, oyster sauce, lemon juice, and brown sugar. Cook and stir for 3 minutes until the sauce is the consistency of syrup.

Serve the salmon cakes with the bok choy, and drizzle the brown sauce over the whole thing. Garnish the dish with the toasted sesame seeds, cilantro, and green onion.

Plate and enjoy.

I want to make sure that you are aware that this recipe was obtained from the food network, and is a recipe by Tyler Florence. And it was damn good.

Tomorrow, I will head out to lunch with some ladies from my old job. It will be strange to see the office again, and to see my old desk, empty.

Until next time, Bon Appetite


Anonymous Anonymous said...

So, Matt tried the guacamole, and even though he doesn't usually like guac, he ended up eating more than one bite! Big improvement! I had one of the tomatoes for dinner with some home made tortillas and a burrito on the side... I felt very Organic Texan or something. I think the stuffed tomatoes are definitely an individual appatizer dish.

11:31 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You'd be so proud of me... I'm roasting asparagus (recipe from Joy of Cooking) to have with some slamon filets. I'll let you know how it comes out, unless I burn down my house, in which case you'll read about it on GoogleNews. ;)

7:16 PM  

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