Southeast Asian Black Rice Pudding with Coconut Milk
Rice pudding and coconut are both divisive food items, often inviting extreme reactions from supporters as well as loathers. As for me, I love both. And the sticky, sweet, faintly salty black rice coconut pudding that’s served in Southeast Asian restaurants is even better than the sum of its parts. (San Franciscans can buy a perfect little tub of the stuff at the massive New May Wah mega-market on Clement Street—one of my favorite hangouts.)
This dish calls for glutinous rice, which also goes by the appropriate name of sticky rice. According to the great digital know-it-all, Wikipedia, legend claims that sticky rice “was used to make the mortar in the construction of the Great Wall of China. Chemical tests have confirmed that this is true for the city walls of Xian.” (Just thought I’d share.) You can find sticky rice at Asian markets or at grocery stores that have a good international section. You can order it online, too. Actually, I imagine this pudding would be delicious made with any kind of rice, it would just wind up with a different texture and/or color. And you’ll probably have to adjust the quantity of water given here. If you do experiment with other types of rice, come back and post a comment about the results!
Posted in Breakfast/Brunch, Desserts, Recipes, Vegetarian
Tagged black rice, black rice pudding, coconut, coconut milk, forbidden rice, southeast asian cooking, southeast asian dessert, thai
San Francisco’s Rewinery delivers wine right to your door within an hour.
Do you live or work in San Francisco? Do you love wine? Our friends at Rewinery are offering a super deal for our San Francisco readers: $15 off your first Rewinery order. We tried it ourselves recently, and found it to be a very cool service. It’s basically like ordering a pizza for delivery, except that it’s wine instead of a pizza. And it’s delivered by a dude on a bike instead of a dude in a car. (I’m not sure if all the deliveries are bike-transported, but ours was.)
Here’s what to do. Go to their website: www.rewinery.com. You’ll have to register as a user before you can view any of the website content. Kind of confusing, but that’s just how it works. Once registered and signed in, you’ll be able to read all about the “Wine for Tonight” — what it is, why it’s noteworthy, what it pairs well with, and more. Like it? Order it! The wine will be in your hands within the hour.
To get your $15 discount, enter the code twolazygourmets at checkout.
On the day that Robin and I tried the service, the featured wine was a Domaine St. Nicolas Pinot Noir. We found it to be quite delicious with the Passover dinner we decided to cook in the middle of August!
I sooooo heart smoked fish.
Have you noticed, attentive readers, how much I love smoked fish? (Permit me to introduce into evidence Exhibit A and Exhibit B.) This is because smoked fish has a very delicious flavor! For lack of a more articulate explanation!
A few weeks ago, a multi-block power failure compromised the menu of the blowout cocktail party my mother was about to start cooking for. Mom’s next-door neighbor, Marsha, came to the rescue by contributing this delicacy, which requires no electricity to prepare. I am in no way using hyperbole when I say that I could eat this dish every minute of every day forever. It makes me wish I were a circus seal in training at a really nice circus where they reward obedient seals with this spread, on baguette slices, with a glass of wine. And a crisp green salad. And the seals live in luxury hotel rooms with an ocean view, spotless bathrooms, and cable TV. That would be cool.
Posted in Appetizers, Recipes, Side Dishes, Small Plates, Snacks
Tagged appetizer, canned trout, chives, lemon, smoked fish, smoked trout, spread, vacuum-packed
Homemade hot sauce is easy to make, delicious, and pretty, too!
I recently moved to a new house. Though the new place is just a mile and a half from the old, I feel like the move has somehow turned me into a different person. Because it’s quite a bit smaller than the old place, it has forced to become better organized, more mindful of our stuff, tidier. I find myself diligently removing my shoes upon entering the house and immediately stashing them in a basket placed conveniently in the hall for this very purpose. I’m sweeping the house every day, stashing compostable food scraps in a neat little bin on my kitchen counter to be emptied into a compost bin in the backyard every other day. I can’t explain it, but this new house—tiny and situated in a serene and sunny spot, with an ample backyard where my 4-year-old can play within view of the kitchen and a bountiful vegetable garden tended by my green-thumb husband—seems to have completed my transformation from single girl in the city to middle aged suburban mom. The weirdest part? I like it.
Proof in point, I’ve not only become tidier and more of a homebody, but I’ve become the sort of person who makes my own condiments. It started, innocently enough, with a green tomato and jalapeno chutney, progressed to several different types of mustard, then sauerkraut, and now I’ve moved on to hot sauce.
The mint, capers, lemon, and absence of mayonnaise make this a very different kind of potato salad.
If you read last week’s Chipotle Turkey Burger post, and you’re particularly observant, you may have wondered about the blurry side dish in the background of the burger photo. This week we swap focus and let Betsy’s Warm Potato Salad shine—with blurry burger demoted to supporting cast.
I wanted to share this personal favorite, introduced to me by my clever friend Betsy, in time for your Fourth of July celebratory barbecues and whatnot. It’s a light, flavorful, sophisticated alternative to the familiar mayo-drenched potato salad that makes appearances at picnics throughout the land this time of year. The lemon, mint, and capers make this salad extra special—as does the fact that it’s served warm.
By the way, have you ever been unsure about what to use when “new potatoes” are called for? “New potatoes,” “creamers,” and “fingerlings” are all just different names for immature potatoes that are harvested in spring or summer. According to the all-knowing internet, “New potatoes are not a separate variety of potato, but younger versions of other varieties.” So there you have it.
Posted in Recipes, Salads, Side Dishes, Small Plates, Snacks, Vegetarian
Tagged 4th of july, capers, celery, creamers, fingerlings, fourth of july, july 4th, lemon vinaigrette, mint, new potatoes, no mayonnaise, potato salad, warm potato salad
Light & Fresh Chipotle Turkey Burger with Cilantro-Lime Crema
Juliana and I have been friends for a long time. Although our friendship keeps us plenty busy in the present—what with the authoring and bloggering and all—like most old friends, we love to reminisce about the past.
Not surprisingly, a lot of our memories have to do with food—like the long “urban hikes” we used to take that always led directly to our favorite dim sum joint, the time we tried to cook nopales with soy sauce, or the gut-busting Thanksgiving feast we enjoyed, inexplicably, in the middle of a July heat wave. But possibly our fondest food-related recollections are of the cold winter nights we spent testing recipes for my first cookbook, Campfire Cuisine, on a tiny portable barbecue on the rooftop of Juliana’s San Francisco apartment. Lacking backyards, we had no choice but to bundle up and scramble out onto the roof, toting ingredients, charcoal, matches, and a bucket of water to prevent burning down the neighborhood. We shivered and giggled as we grilled meat, veggies, and even desserts under the one or two stars visible through the urban light pollution.
Posted in Entrees, Recipes
Tagged avocado, barbecue, barbecued burgers, burger, chipotle, chipotle turkey burger, chipotles en adobo, chipotles in adobo, cilantro, crema, light and fresh, lime, sour cream, turkey burger
Is it tomatillo salsa? Is it guacamole? Mmmm.
The window awning at Taco Los Altos in San Francisco’s Bernal Heights neighborhood boasts a blunt claim of “The Best Mexican Food.” Since there are no contextual clues (like “in the universe” or “on this block” or “cooked by stamp collectors”) I can’t confirm or deny the awning’s truthfulness. But I can tell you that the food there is absolutely delicious. You have to try the grilled veggie tacos, with their scrumptiously flavorful mix of caramelized onions, peppers, carrots, zucchini, mushrooms, and more. You also have to try any dish that comes with their signature avocado salsa—part salsa verde and part guacamole, with plenty of lime and cilantro.
Posted in Condiments, Recipes, Side Dishes, Small Plates, Snacks, Vegetarian
Tagged avocado, bernal heights, chips, cilantro, condiment, dip, lime, mexican restaurant, salsa, salsa verde, san francisco, taco los altos, tomatillos, tortilla chips
Baked Five-Spice Sweet Potato “Fries” with Ginger Aioli
I’m happy to report that I’m still on the Chinese five-spice powder kick that I wrote about back in February. This traditional Asian spice blend, which is easy to find at most supermarkets, is most commonly made of cinnamon, cloves, star anise, fennel, and Szechuan peppercorns. As I mentioned in my spiced peanut post, five-spice powder is usually used in savory Asian meat, seafood, or vegetable dishes, but it’s a tantalizing partner for sweeter foods, too.
I got the idea for pairing five-spice powder with sweet potatoes from the book Cocktail Food: 50 Finger Foods with Attitude, by twin sisters Sara Corpening Whiteford and Mary Corpening Barber. The difference in my version here is the dipping sauce. The sisters pair their spears with a soy-based sauce, but I was hankering for something thicker and creamier. A little experimentation resulted in this lemony ginger aioli, which I now make all the time for artichokes and other dippables.
What do you like to do with five-spice powder? Let us know!
Posted in Appetizers, Recipes, Side Dishes, Small Plates, Snacks, Vegetarian
Tagged aioli, artichokes, chinese five-spice powder, garlic, ginger, ginger aioli, lemon juice, mayonnaise, sweet potato fries, sweet potatoes
Tapas-style sardine salad makes a good appetizer, lunch, small dinner plate, snack, or even breakfast.
I owe a big thank you to my food-loving friend Carolyn for introducing me to this simple, delicious, nutritious salad. (Sardines are packed with vitamins, minerals, omega-3 fatty acids, and protein! Sardines are not packed with mercury! So says Wikipedia!) This remarkably concise dish features only four main ingredients, each intensely flavorful. A small bite goes a long way. And on a scale from effortless to elementary, this recipe’s difficulty rating hovers somewhere around “imbecile-proof.” Sardine-loving imbeciles, rejoice!
Serve with good bread or crackers, along with optional roasted red peppers and/or slices of hard-boiled egg. Makes a delicious small dinner plate, light lunch, or even breakfast for those inclined towards savory morning fare.
Posted in Appetizers, Entrees, Recipes, Salads, Side Dishes, Small Plates, Snacks
Tagged lemon, parsley, sardine salad, sardines, tapas
I had no idea it was so easy to make tortillas (until now).
“I’m lazy,” you protest. “Why would I want to make my own tortillas from scratch?” I hear you. Chill out. It’s true, no one who lives near a good market really needs to make tortillas from scratch—but when you do, the payoff is well worth the smallish amount of effort you’ve expended. Homemade tortillas are soft, fresh, and hot; weirdly light and dense at the same time. They’re a fun food to cook with kids (just watch out for that burning hot cast iron skillet). And whenever you have the opportunity to answer a question with, “Oh nothing, just whipping up some homemade tortillas,” you’ll find that people will think you are very incredible.
This easy recipe was given to me by a half-French Jewish statistician. If that’s not practically a license to produce authentic tortillas, I don’t know what is. Bon appetit!