Most readers will know by now that I am a big fan of our Vegetable & Fruit box delivery service, called Odd box. You can read more about them in this blog post here and on their website here, but basically they help fight the war on food waste by rescuing F&V that gets rejected by the supermarkets.
Readers who live in London might be interested to know that Oddbox is now organising their first Wonky Supper Club to be held on 12 July, location The Grosvenor Arms, SW18 4ED (Earlsfield). Aside from sharing an enjoyable (vegetarian meal) with fellow wonky V&F supporters and foodies, you will also get to try out a cake made by yours truly!
I don’t want to give away too much info, but I can say some wonkyness will be involved … 🙂
This is one of those dishes that it’s so easy to make at home, although it needs to cook/simmer for an hour, the ingredient preparation will only take a few minutes. I often eat it in the winter as it’s spicy and comforting but I was suddenly craving some so made it this week.
There are lots of recipes available but this is how I made it
In a casserole / heavy bottomed pan, mix the seasoning:
3 tbsp gochugaru (Korean red chili pepper flakes) with 3 tbsp gochujang (Korean red chilli paste).
Add 5 tbsp soy sauce, 1 tbs sesame oil and 1 tbs brown sugar or honey.
Add 3 minced garlic gloves or a tbsp of garlic paste
optional add 1 tsp sesame seeds
Add your chicken pieces to this mix. You can use a whole chicken chopped into pieces or even fillets only, but I like to use drumsticks and/or thighs. You will need about 1 kg
Add 2 medium onions, roughly chopped and 1 liter water
Stir and bring to the boil. Once boiling reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes
Clean 4 medium potatoes and 3 carrots and cut into large pieces. Add to the pan, bring to the boil again, reduce heat and simmer for another 30 minutes, stirring occasionally
Add some chopped green/spring onions just before serving with rice.
(If you prefer it spicier you can add more gochugaru or some chopped chillies)
My banchan (side dishes) were very simple but did include some home made cucumber kimchi!
Did you know it is National Vegetarian Week? To be honest, I didn’t… until OddBox told me about it and asked if they could share my recipe for the tart tatin I made with the red onions from their home delivery box.
As some readers might remember, OddBox provides us weekly with wonky veg & fruit, ie veg & fruit that gets rejected by supermarkets because it is odd shaped or surplus. I wrote about some perfectly fine but odd shaped beets in a previous post, and since then we have been receiving loads of funny looking but delicious tasting items like these cute strawberries.
The red onions in last week’s box were rejected because they were too small! So silly as it made them the perfect size for this amazing tart tatin. I made it on Sunday for a late lunch and it was so good, we “inhaled” it in about 15 minutes flat 😛
Contrary to baking where I measure/weigh each ingredients, my cooking is more random. I do look at recipes for inspiration/guidance but then just follow my own instincts and taste and usually it works out pretty well. Because this tart was so amazing, I did write down how I made it and am sharing it with you.
Caramelised red onion tart tatin
Red onions, small to medium size.You will need as many as you can fit in your pan + 2 more.
Butter (generous knob)
Vegetable oil about 1-2 tbsp
Balsamic vinegar about 3-4 tbsp
(Golden) sugar about 3 tbsp
Thyme, a sprinkle
Water about 3 tbsp
Puff pastry, 1 pre-rolled sheet or 2/3 of a block (you could of course make your own puff pastry, but I can’t be bothered with all the faff. And even Mary Berry says she buys it, so if the Queen of Baking says shop bought is fine, who am I to argue with that! I do buy an all butter version though).
How to make:
Melt the butter and oil in a low, oven proof, casserole or oven proof frying pan on a medium heat. I use a 23cm creuset casserole but anything with a heavy bottom, flat top and suitable for hob & oven is good.
Peel and cut the onions in half crosswise, ie the rings will be showing. Add to pan with cut side down, make sure you cover the whole bottom pan.
Pan fry gentle until slightly browned, for about 15 min. The onions will shrink slightly, so this is the time to add the extra onions!
Sprinkle sugar & thyme over the onions, add the balsamic vinegar and water. Cover with some foil or lid and reduce heat to fairly low. Let simmer for another 20 minutes.
Remove foil/lid and turn up heat slightly to reduce the liquid until it’s almost gone and sticky but take care you don’t burn the onions. Meanwhile also preheat the oven to 200 degrees C.
If you use a block puff pastry, roll out to a circle that is a bit larger than the pan you use. If you use a ready sheet, just cut out to size. Larger is better than too small.
Turn off heat and place pastry on top off the onions, tuck the pastry nicely in between the onions and around the sides.
Place in the preheated oven and bake for 25-30 minutes until pastry is crips and golden
Remove pan from oven and rest for 10 minutes
Place a completely flat and sturdy plate/board on top of the pan, take a deep breath and flip the pan over whilst holding the plate firmly against the pan.
Don’t worry if any onions have stuck to the pan, you can just place these on the pastry tart.
Optionally sprinkle some fresh thyme, feta or goat’s cheese over the tart tatin and serve whilst still lukewarm.
You might remember that I made some mandu last year (see previous post here), and as I really liked the filling, I made the filling again this time but shaped it into burgers without bothering with mandu skins.
This is such a lovely burger, so I wanted to share the recipe with you but of course I forgot to take photo’s during the process. It’s really simple though,(and based on this recipe) from Misty Yoon.
12oz raw large shrimp, peeled and de-veined: chopped up (I prefer not to use a blender, as I like to have small pieces of shrimp in my burger, plus you have less chance it ends up “rubbery”)
3 oz Korean chives: washed and chopped finely
Mix in a bowl B:
1 table spoon sake
1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon sugar
pinch of red pepper flakes, I use Korean Gochugaru
1 table spoon of sesame oil
optional: 1 teaspoon of fresh ginger, finely grated
Mix A + B
Add A to B and mix well. Add 2 table spoons of cornstarch and mix again.
Oil a non stick pan very lightly with vegetable oil and put on medium heat.
Divide the shrimp mixture into 8/9 burgers, I portion it up with an icecream scoop, but you can use two tablespoons.
Place each burger into the pan, lightly squash it down and fry on medium heat on both sides for approx 6- 8 min each until the middle has cooked through. As you can see, the burgers have that slightly rustic, home made look 🙂
Turn up the heat and fry for a final minute on each side until nice and golden brown.
I made this spicy stir fried Korean squid for my dinner today, and wanted to share this as it’s very easy and quick to make and very good!
The recipe I used is one from Korean Bapsang, although I made a few small changes. I used some different vegetables and left out the chillies, I think the dish is spicy enough with the Gochujang and Gochugaru. I also bought my squid ready cleaned and scored from the Korean supermarket.
Here are my veggies in the frying pan. On the left my squid marinating plus the spring onion waiting to be added.