Cauliflower Fritters – Em Shaat My Way

Cauliflower Fritters – Em Shaat My Way

Em Shaat is in my opinion a Middle Eastern comfort food.  It’s really a cauliflowecauliflowerr fritter made with boiled cauliflower that’s been battered and fried.

One of my Palestinian friends taught me how to make this yummy cauliflower fritter years ago.  She used all purpose flour to make her batter, it was good, but a bit heavy and not very crisp.  I suppose fritters weren’t meant to be crispy.

But I like things crispy so I added my own twist to this traditional Middle Eastern recipe.  The secret is Mochiko (sweet rice flour).   Mochiko batter is lighter and when fried turns into a crispy delight.

The recipe calls for cumin and turmeric.  Both  spices are used in many Middle Eastern dishes.  They compliment the cauliflower nicely giving it a mild exotic flavor.

I suppose you could say that I’ve created a Fusion dish; Med meets Asia!   But really, my Middle Eastern husband loves my version!

I usually serve cauliflower dish as a main course, it’s a nice (not so healthy) alternative to a meat course.  But it can be served as an appetizer, snack, or side dish as well.  It’s usually served warm, but it’s pretty darn good cold too!

Ingredients:

1 Medium Cauliflower – remove the leaves but keep whole

2 Cloves Garlic – finely minced

2 Large Eggs

1/2 Cup Mochiko Sweet Rice Flour

1/2 Cup Water

1/2 Tsp. Cumin

1/2 Tsp. Turmeric

1 Tsp. Salt

1 Tsp. Ground Black Pepper

1/4 Cup Parsley – finely chopped

Oil for frying

Directions:

Boil Cauliflower until tender – about 20 minutes

Whisk all ingredients except cauliflower and oil together in a large mixing bowl – batter will be thin

Drain and Break up the cauliflower and stir into batter

Heat about 1 1/2″ of oil in a pan

Drop cauliflower mixture into oil and fry each side until golden brown

Serve hot or cold

It goes great with a plain yogurt dipping sauce!

 

 

Cauliflower Fritters
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Servings
6 Fritters
Servings
6 Fritters
Cauliflower Fritters
Print Recipe
Servings
6 Fritters
Servings
6 Fritters
Ingredients
Servings: Fritters
Instructions
  1. Boil Cauliflower until tender - about 20 minutes
  2. Whisk all ingredients except cauliflower and oil together in a large mixing bowl - batter will be thin
  3. Drain and Break up the cauliflower and stir into batter
  4. Heat about 1 1/2" of oil in a pan
  5. Drop cauliflower mixture into oil and fry each side until golden brown
  6. Serve hot or cold It goes great with a plain yogurt dipping sauce!
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Sweet Sesame Seed Chicken Wings

Sweet Sesame Seed Chicken Wings

Sweet sesame seed chicken wingsThe other week my daughter Jaime and I were discussing dishes she could take to a pot luck at the Hawaiian Club. Now Jaime and her family do not eat beef or pork so we were limited to seafood or poultry.  I suggested she make Shoyu Chicken, that’s an easy dish and definitely local Hawaii food.  Then I remembered these chicken wings my mother used to make for pot lucks, we called it Sweet Sesame Seed Chicken Wings.  They were yummy!

Sweet Sesame Seed Chicken Wings are deep fried sweet garlicy wing pieces.  They’re not crispy, but are very juicy, flavorful, and tender.

 

They take a bit of time to prepare, mostly because they’re deep fried.  They’re probably not the healthiest chicken dish you’ll ever have, but they are so worth the time and calories.

I couldn’t find the recipe, in fact I’m not even sure if she had one written down.  When I asked her about she couldn’t remember, so I had to figure it out on my own, based on a vague memory.  It wasn’t really difficult to figure it out and I was able to make it in time for Super Bowl Sunday.  They came out “ono” as we say in Hawaii.  My family loved them!  I’m sure we’ll be making them for future get togethers and pot lucks.

Ingredients:

4 Lbs. Chicken Wings

1 Cup Mochiko Sweet Rice Flour

1/2 Cup Brown Sugar – firmly packed

1 Cup Soy Sauce

1/4 Cup Sesame Oil

2-3 Cloved Garlic – minced

2 Tbs. Sesame Seeds + extra for garnish if desired

2 Stalks Green Onions – chopped + extra for garnish if desired

Oil for frying

Directions:

Mix all ingredients together until Mochiko dissolves (except for frying oil and chicken wings)  Mixture will be a milky brown

Pour Marinade into large ziplock bag and put chicken wings in

Marinate in refrigerator at least 3 hours

Heat oil and deep fry chicken wings until done, about 10 minutes

Drain on paper towel

Arrange on serving dish and garnish with more chopped green onions and sesame seed if desired

sweet sesame street chicken wings

 

 

 

Sweet Sesame Chicken Wings
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Sweet Sesame Chicken Wings
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Ingredients
Servings:
Instructions
  1. Mix all ingredients together until Mochiko dissolves (except for frying oil and chicken wings) Mixture will be a milky brown
  2. Pour Marinade into large ziplock bag and put chicken wings in
  3. Marinate in refrigerator at least 3 hours
  4. Heat oil and deep fry chicken wings until done, about 10 minutes
  5. Drain on paper towel
  6. Arrange on serving dish and garnish with more chopped green onions and sesame seed if desired
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Filipino Beef Empanada Recipe!!!

Filipino Beef Empanada Recipe!!!

Beef Empanada

Empanada also called pastel in Portuguese and pate in Haitian Creole is stuffed bread or pastry baked or fried in many countries. The name comes from the Galician, Portuguese, and Spanish verb empanar, meaning to wrap or coat in bread.

Beef empanada is a half-moon-shaped turnover with a semi-sweet dough and savory beef filling. The meat is cooked with vegetables like potatoes, bell pepper and green peas, onions, and more.  It’s up to you. But for now I will give you my  version of Filipino Beef Empanada.

If you’re looking for more merienda recipes check out our Merienda Series  including “Halo-Halo ” Filipino Iced Mixed Fruit DessertHalayang Ube (Purple Yam Jam)Banana Lumpia – TuronBibingka GalapongPuto Cheese (Steamed Rice Cake with Cheese)Mais con Yelo – Refreshing Filipino SnackBananas in Syrup – Minatamis na Sabang SagingBanana Que – Fried Banana SkewersPancit Palabok – Filipino Noodle Dish and Biko (Sweet Rice Cake) Treat!

 

Ingredients:

Crust Ingredients:

2½ cups flour

8 oz. (2 sticks) butter

⅓ cup water ice cold water

3 tbsp. sugar

1 tsp. salt

Meat Filling Ingredients:

½ pound ground beef

½ cup tomato sauce

1 pc. carrot, peeled and diced

1 pc. small potato, peeled and diced

½ pc. small onion, peeled and chopped

½ cup frozen sweet peas, thawed

1 clove garlic, peeled and minced

½ cup water

1 tbsp. oil

¼ cup raisins

1 tbsp. salt or salt to taste

¼ tsp. pepper or more

Egg Wash Ingredients:

1 pc. egg

1 tbsp. milk

⅛ tsp. salt

 

Directions:

Crust:

Cut butter into cubes and freeze for about 1 hour.

In a bowl, whisk together flour, sugar and salt and chill in refrigerator for about 30 minutes.

Add butter to flour mixture. Cut the butter into the flour using a pastry blender or by pinching the fat into the flour mixture with hands. Work them together until resembling coarse cornmeal with pea-like, butter-speckled pieces.

Slowly drizzle water to flour-butter mixture and with hands, mix until just combined. Gently gather dough and press into a ball. If dough is too crumbly and does not hold together, add more water a tablespoon at a time. DO NOT ADD TOO MUCH LIQUID and DO NOT OVERWORK DOUGH. Wrap dough with plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for about 2 hours.

Filling:

In pot, heat oil over medium heat. Add onions and garlic and cook until translucent and fragrant.

Add ground beef and cook, stirring occasionally and breaking to pieces with back of spoon, for about 6 to 8 minutes, or until pink is gone from meat.

Add tomato sauce and water and bring to a boil. Lower heat, cover and simmer until meat is fully cooked.

Add potatoes, carrots, green peas and raisins. Continue to cook until vegetables are tender and liquid is reduced. Season with salt and pepper to taste. In a colander, drain excess liquid.

Assembly:

Divide pie crust into 12 balls. Place each ball between two sheets of parchment paper and with a rolling pin.

Gently flatten each ball into 5-inch diameter and ¼-inch thickness. Using inverted bowl or round biscuit cutter, cut into dough by gently twisting to form circles with smooth edges. Trim excess dough.

On a flat work surface, lay dough circle and spoon about a heaping tbsp. of filling in the middle. Fold the bottom of dough over filling and with fingers, press edges firmly.

Using tines of a fork, press on sides of dough to firmly seal. Repeat with remaining dough and filling.

Make egg wash by whisking together eggs, milk and salt in a bowl.

On a lightly greased baking sheet, arrange prepared empanadas in a single layer and brush top with egg wash.

Bake in a 375 F oven for about 25 to 30 minutes or until lightly browned.

Allow to slightly cool for about 1 to 2 minutes and remove from baking sheet.

 

 

 

beef empanada
Filipino Beef Empanada Recipe!!!
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beef empanada
Filipino Beef Empanada Recipe!!!
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Ingredients
Servings:
Instructions
Crust
  1. Cut butter into cubes and freeze for about 1 hour.
  2. In a bowl, whisk together flour, sugar and salt and chill in refrigerator for about 30 minutes.
  3. Add butter to flour mixture. Cut the butter into the flour using a pastry blender or by pinching the fat into the flour mixture with hands. Work them together until resembling coarse cornmeal with pea-like, butter-speckled pieces.
  4. Slowly drizzle water to flour-butter mixture and with hands, mix until just combined. Gently gather dough and press into a ball. If dough is too crumbly and does not hold together, add more water a tablespoon at a time. DO NOT ADD TOO MUCH LIQUID and DO NOT OVERWORK DOUGH. Wrap dough with plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for about 2 hours.
Filling
  1. In pot, heat oil over medium heat. Add onions and garlic and cook until translucent and fragrant.
  2. Add ground beef and cook, stirring occasionally and breaking to pieces with back of spoon, for about 6 to 8 minutes, or until pink is gone from meat.
  3. Add tomato sauce and water and bring to a boil. Lower heat, cover and simmer until meat is fully cooked.
  4. Add potatoes, carrots, green peas and raisins. Continue to cook until vegetables are tender and liquid is reduced. Season with salt and pepper to taste. In a colander, drain excess liquid.
Assembly
  1. Divide pie crust into 12 balls. Place each ball between two sheets of parchment paper and with a rolling pin.
  2. Gently flatten each ball into 5-inch diameter and ¼-inch thickness. Using inverted bowl or round biscuit cutter, cut into dough by gently twisting to form circles with smooth edges. Trim excess dough.
  3. On a flat work surface, lay dough circle and spoon about a heaping tbsp. of filling in the middle. Fold the bottom of dough over filling and with fingers, press edges firmly.
  4. Using tines of a fork, press on sides of dough to firmly seal. Repeat with remaining dough and filling.
  5. Make egg wash by whisking together eggs, milk and salt in a bowl.
  6. On a lightly greased baking sheet, arrange prepared empanadas in a single layer and brush top with egg wash.
  7. Bake in a 375 F oven for about 25 to 30 minutes or until lightly browned.
  8. Allow to slightly cool for about 1 to 2 minutes and remove from baking sheet.
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Banana Lumpia – Turon Recipe!!!

Banana Lumpia – Turon Recipe!!!

 

TuronTurrón de Banana or also known as lumpiyang saging or banana lumpia is the next recipe in our Merienda Recipes series.  It’s a Filipino snack made with thin sliced bananas preferably saba or Cardaba bananas and a slice of jackfruit wrapped in a thin pastry shell.  The Banana Lumpia is then deep fried then rolled in sugar for a sweet and crunchy snack.

Turon is always my favorite, my grandmother cooked it for me when I was young and when I got old I told her I will be the one to cook it for her. This recipe is very simple, fast and very easy to cook. So this is my version of Turon Saba or Banana Lumpia pair it with Lemon Grass Ginger Iced Tea for a perfect refreshing snack.

Before we begin, a word about saba bananas vs. plantains.  In the Philippines the Saba or Cardaba banana is also known as a plantain.  It is a triploid hybred banana cultivar originating from the Philippines and native to Southeast Asia,  it is not the same as the plantains found in many US markets.

Saba BananasThe Saba is a small fat thin skinned banana that is sweeter than the regular Cavendish bananas you normally see in supermarkets.  It can be eaten fresh as a fruit or cooked.  It is sweeter than the Cavendish variety.

Although in the Philippines they also call Saba a plantain banana don’t get Saba and plantains confused.  Yes they are both bananas but are very different and are not interchangeable.

Unlike the Saba bananas Plantains are cooking bananas and are used as a vegetable.  Plantains are longer and has thicker skin than both Saba and Cavendish bananas; it is not as sweet and contains more starch than the other banana varieties.  Plantains can not be eaten raw.

You can usually find Saba Banana at Asian Markets, but if you can’t don’t be tempted to substitute Plantains.  Opt instead to use the plain old “regular ” Cavendish bananas found in your local supermarket.

Ingredients:

1  package lumpia wrappers

1/2 dozen ripe saba or “regular” bananas

1 cup chopped jackfruit

1/2 cup brown or white sugar

2-3 cups oil for deep frying

1 egg white slightly beaten (optional for sealing or you can us water for sealing)

 

Directions:

Banana LumpiaCut the banana in half then cut each half into thin slices.[spacer height=”20px” id=”2″]

Roll slightly each banana slice in white or brown sugar.

Place coated bananas on top of each lumpia wrapper (it depends to your liking on how many pieces of banana slices you want to add)

Spread with chopped langka (jackfruit), Optional

Banana LumpiaCarefully roll into shape of egg roll and seal the ends with water or egg white.

Sprinkle 1 tbsp. or more of brown sugar over your turon. This will caramelize and stick to your turon. (if you prefer you can roll the lumpia in white sugar after frying)

 

Deep fry in medium-high oil.

Flip your turon to coat evenly with caramelized sugar. Fry until golden brown and crisp.

Remove from pan and drain on paper towel for a minute. (If you didn’t sprinkle brown sugar on the lumpia before frying you can roll it in white sugar before serving)

Serve, Share and Enjoy!!!!!

Banana Lumpia
Banana Lumpia - Turon
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Banana Lumpia
Banana Lumpia - Turon
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Ingredients
Servings:
Instructions
  1. Cut the banana in half then cut each half into thin slices.
  2. Roll slightly each banana slice in white or brown sugar.
  3. Place coated bananas on top of each lumpia wrapper (it depends to your liking on how many pieces of banana slices you want to add)
  4. Spread with chopped langka (jackfruit)
  5. Carefully roll into shape of egg roll and seal the ends with water or egg white.
  6. Sprinkle 1 tbsp. or more of brown sugar over your turon. This will caramelize and stick to your turon. (if you prefer you can roll the lumpia in white sugar after frying)
  7. Deep fry in medium-high oil. 
  8. Flip your turon to coat evenly with caramelized sugar. Fry until golden brown and crisp.
  9. Remove from pan and drain on paper towel for a minute. (If you didn't sprinkle brown sugar on the lumpia before frying you can roll it in white sugar before serving)
Recipe Notes

You can make Banana Lumpia 2 way and either way will be just as good.

You can roll the lumpia in brown sugar before deep frying - this gives you a caramelized topping when fried OR

you can fry the lumpia, drain oil on a paper towel, and roll in white sugar.

You can sprikle Sesame Seeds on while turon is still hot if desired.

You don't have to use Langka (jackfruit).

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Cinco de Mayo Easy Chili Recipe

Cinco de Mayo Easy Chili Recipe

Happy Cinco de Mayo!  I think many folks mistakenly think today is Mexico’s Independence Day, the most important national holiday in that country; but it’s not, that’s on September 16.  Cinco de Mayo is celebrated to commemorate the victory at the Battle of Puebla when the out numbered Mexican army triumphed over the better equipped French forces on May 5, 1862.

Cinco de Mayo is not observed as a national in Mexico although public schools are closed nationwide.   It is an official holiday in the State of Puebla  where the battle actually took place and the neighboring State of Veracruz. However in the United States it has been celebrated in California since 1863 and has spread to most of the other state since.  The day took on more significance in 2005 when Congress issued a Concurrent Resolution calling for the US President to issue a proclamation calling upon Americans to observe Cinco de Mayo with appropriate ceremonies and activities.  In short Cinco de Mayo is a much bigger deal in America than it is in Mexico where it is virtually ignored.

In the US the day is definitely embraced by commercial industries who capitalize on the day to advertise Mexican products with a particular emphasis on food, beverage, and music.  I’m sure you’ve seen national ad campaigns hawking beer and tortilla chips!  Not to mention most local eateries and bars roll out Cinco de Mayo specials starting the sometimes in the middle of April.

I’m all for a holiday when consuming abundant Mexican food and downing frozen margaritas is de rigueur, but I’m not much into standing in line for a table at my favorite Mexican restaurant.  We usually stay home on Cinco de Mayo and cook up a bit of Tex-Mex and whip up a pitcher of margaritas.

Cinco De Mayo Easy Chili Recipe This year I’m making some Chili.  I’m not really sure if Chili is an American or Mexican dish, the verdict is still out on that!  It does however supposedly have Spanish roots dating back from the time of Spanish conquistadors (according to some sources) and has been a staple in America’s Southwest since the days of wagon trains.  There are many myths and legends surrounding the origins of this spicy dish but it really doesn’t matter whether it’s Mexican, Tex-Mex, or whatever.  What is important is that many of us like it and it’s a good choice for Cinco de Mayo!

Traditionally Chili is made with beans, dried meat, and hot chili peppers that are all stewed in a pot for hours.  These days most of us don’t have the time or inclination to simmer Chili in a pot all day, although there are crockpot recipes you can use.   For me crockpot cooking takes too much forethought; I usually cook what I’m in the mood for on any particular day, so I need to have recipes that I can cook up quickly with ingredients I usually stock in my kitchen.  Chili is one of my staples, I almost always have the ingredients!  Actually my daughter Jaime used my recipe at a neighborhood Chili Cook-Off a few months ago and won!  Here’s my recipe!


Cinco de Mayo Easy Chili Recipe

Ingredients:

1 Onion, diced

2 Tbsp. Garlic, minced

1 Tbsp. Oil

1 Lb. Lean Ground Beef or Ground Turkey

1  Fresh Jalapeno or Habanero Pepper, diced

1 Can Dark Kidney Beans in water

1 Can Chili Bean in Chili sauce

1 Tsp. Ground Cumin

1 Tbsp. Ground Chili Powder

1 Tbsp. Garlic Powder

1 Can  Mexican Style Diced Stewed Tomatoes

Directions:

Heat oil in a large pot and saute onions and garlic until half cooked.

Add ground meat, spices, and peppers mix very well while cooking to break up large clumps of ground meat.  Cook until meat is crumbly.

Drain oil.

Drain water from Kidney Beans and add to meat mixture.

Add entire can of Chili Beans to meat mixture, DO NOT DRAIN.

Add can of Stewed Tomatoes and mix everything well.

Simmer on medium to medium low stove about 1/2 hour or until at least 1/3 of liquid evaporates.

Serve over rice or with corn bread, or use a a hot dog or burger topping!  Store leftovers in airtight containers in the fridge.  Reheat before use.  Like stew this Chili gets better as it “ages”, but don’t store it too long, no more than 2-3 day.  For longer storage place Chili in freezer safe containers and freeze.  It freezes very well and can go from freezer to microwave when needed.

Cinco De Mayo Easy Chili Recipe
Cinco De Mayo Easy Chili Recipe
Print Recipe
Spicy and meaty Chili that's super easy to make!
Servings Prep Time
6 Servings 5 Minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
1 Hour 30 Minutes
Servings Prep Time
6 Servings 5 Minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
1 Hour 30 Minutes
Cinco De Mayo Easy Chili Recipe
Cinco De Mayo Easy Chili Recipe
Print Recipe
Spicy and meaty Chili that's super easy to make!
Servings Prep Time
6 Servings 5 Minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
1 Hour 30 Minutes
Servings Prep Time
6 Servings 5 Minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
1 Hour 30 Minutes
Ingredients
Servings: Servings
Instructions
  1. Heat oil in a large pot and saute onions and garlic until half cooked.
  2. Add ground meat, spices, and peppers mix very well while cooking to break up large clumps of ground meat. Cook until meat is crumbly.
  3. Drain oil.
  4. Drain water from Kidney Beans and add to meat mixture.
  5. Add entire can of Chili Beans to meat mixture, DO NOT DRAIN.
  6. Add can of Stewed Tomatoes and mix everything well.
  7. Simmer on medium to medium low stove about 1/2 hour or until at least 1/3 of liquid evaporates.
Recipe Notes

Serve over rice or with corn bread, or use a a hot dog or burger topping!  Store leftovers in airtight containers in the fridge.  Reheat before use.  Like stew this Chili gets better as it "ages", but don't store it too long, no more than 2-3 day.  For longer storage place Chili in freezer safe containers and freeze.  It freezes very well and can go from freezer to microwave when needed.

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