Thursday, January 12, 2012

A Thai Russian Christmas

I have some delicious {and easy} recipes to warm you up! I promised them for Tuesday, but we're moving a bit slow in these parts... trying to hold on to the holidays and ignore the looming semester of work.

Other than wishing the fam damily a merry Christmas and keeping the tree up, we haven't done much to celebrate Russian Christmas around these parts. Why do we even go that far? Well, 50% of my genes are Russian. It's in the blood.

So, this year C and I thought it would be fun revel in the holiday and cook up a fancy meal. We wanted something new, something that would go with our new year's resolutions {resolution #1: learn to cook up some tasty Thai food}, and since my sister Sarah's spent the holidays in Thailand, we decided to do a Thai Russian Christmas! obviously.

The menu::
~ Poached Cod with Shiitake from the Wagamama cookbook
~Spicy Thai Coconut Chicken Soup from the Jan/Feb 2012 Cooking Light

{resolution #2: improve my food-photography skills}

~ Poached Cod ~
*Makes two serving
2 tablespoons butter
2 5-ounce cod fillet
2 scallions
1/4 green pepper, trimmed, seeded, and cut into thin strips
handful of shiitake mushrooms, finely sliced
1 tablespoon sake {we didn't have any, so we just used a spoonful of broth from the soup}
salt and white pepper
2 teaspoons light soy sauce
2 aluminum foil squares about three times the size of the fillets

Preheat the oven to 400F. Using half the butter, grease a section of the foil just larger than the fillet. Put the cod on the foil, skin-side down. Top with the scallions, green pepper, and mushrooms. Dot with the remaining butter, add the sake and season with the salt and pepper.

Wrap the foil tightly to form a sealed package. Put in a roasting pan and pour in enough hot water to come halfway up the sides of the foil packets. Place in the oven for 10 minutes, or until cooked {our fillets took a bit longer, we just ordered an oven thermometer!}.

Open the foil packets and drizzle in the soy sauce.

~ Thai Chicken Soup ~
2 teaspoons oil
1 cup sliced mushrooms
1/2 cup red bell pepper
4 teaspoons minced peeled fresh ginger
4 minced garlic cloves
1 3-inch stalk of lemongrass, sliced lengthwise
2 teaspoons ground fresh chile paste {we couldn't find any, so we used a chili garlic sauce that I found in the Asian section of the grocery store}
3 cups chicken stock
1 1/4 cups light coconut milk
4 teaspoons fish sauce
1 tablespoon sugar
2 cups shredded chicken {they called for breast meat, but we like to add in some dark too}
1/2 cup green onion strips
3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

Heat the oil in your favorite soup pot. Add the mushrooms, bell pepper, ginger, garlic, and lemongrass; cook 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add chile paste; cook 1 minute. Add chicken stock, coconut milk, fish sauce, and sugar; bring to a simmer. Reduce heat to low; simmer for 10 minutes. Add chicken and cook until thoroughly heated. Discard lemongrass before serving. Top with onions, cilantro, and lime juice.

Yum and yum. I love eating Thai dishes in the winter. The spice warms you up, and they're full of so many fresh flavors that you know you're doing something good for your body.

1 comment:

sarah schu said...

Sounds so yummy! I wish I could stress to all the Thai cooks that taking the lemongrass out of the dish is a very important step. No one ever does this. The leaves are hard and impossible to chew or ignore so a lot of times it ends in bad table manners...