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Let's Dish With Linda Lou

Sharing My Recipes, My Life, And The Food Tale Of Two Cities

Crispy Pork Belly

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Pork Belly seems to be one of the most sought-after cuts of meat. The Iron Chef show is who really brought this cut to the forefront. In restaurants today, it’s become one of the hottest items to order. I mean, once you’ve ordered the Pork Belly, you’ll most likely always order it no matter the style it’s being served. It’s that delicious!  I sometimes think we may be a little slow when it comes to trying new things. Many Asian cuisines, have for many years, implemented Pork Belly into a variety of their dishes.

I have a great and easy way to prepare Crispy Pork Belly at home so it will come out tender, golden, with a crispy top. This recipe doesn’t require scoring the skin in any way. This will allow you to slice it later and it will retain its integrity. I think it’s worth mentioning, that Shaoxing rice wine is available in most Asian markets today. If you adore Asain cuisine and want to make delicious Asian dishes at home, Shaoxing rice wine should be a pantry staple.

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Yields: 10 large pieces
Prep Time: 2 minutes
Inactive Prep Time: 4 hours to overnight
Cook Time:  roughly 1 hour 10 minutes
Equipment: Roasting pan with rack

Ingredients:
2-pound pork belly
1 cup of Kosher salt

Marinade:
1/4 cup of low sodium soy sauce
1/3 cup of Shaoxing rice wine
2 tablespoons of brown sugar
2 tablespoons of pure maple syrup
1/4 cup of orange juice
2 cloves of minced garlic

Directions:
Using a paper towel, pat the skin of the Pork Belly completely dry. Whisk together all the marinade ingredients in a bowl and then pour them into a rectangle style baking dish that’s just big enough to hold the pork belly.

Carefully place the Pork Belly into the baking dish making sure only the meat touches the marinate. The skin on the top must remain completely dry. If the marinade level is too high, then discard any extra by pouring some of it off. Place the baking dish with the pork belly and marinade into the frig for at least 4 hours to overnight.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.. Completely line a roasting pan with foil. Pour an inch of water into the bottom of the pan. Place a wire rack on top to hold the Pork Belly.

Remove the baking dish with the marinated pork belly from the frig. While the pork belly is still in the baking dish, spread 1 cup of Kosher salt evenly over the fat cap of the pork belly as seen in the pictures above.  Next, transfer the Pork Belly onto the wire rack. The Pork Belly will cook above the water and the drippings will fall into the water.

Note: If one part of the Pork Belly is slightly lower or shorter on one side, use an oven-safe item to prop up that side so the pork will cook evenly. Bake for around 40 minutes.

Remove the pan with the Pork Belly and increase the temperature to 470 degrees F. The salt should have formed a crust which you can easily remove. You’ll be able to see the Pork Belly,  in the side by side pictures, with the removed salted fat cap above.

Once the temperature of the oven has reached 470 degrees F., place the Pork Belly back into the oven and bake for another 30 minutes. The skin should be bubbly and crisp. The internal temperature should be 165-degrees F.

Remove from the oven and let cool for about 10 minutes before cutting and serving. Crispy Pork Belly is a great appetizer and one I know you’ll make over and over.

 

 

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Sea Scallops Two Ways-Scallop Ceviche And Scallop Gratin

 

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Every now and then I look back at a few of my past recipes and maybe give them a face-lift. I decided to do that here with the beautiful sea scallops.

Making two completely different dishes using this one ingredient. If you remember, my original Sea Scallop Gratin was made as an entrée. As delicious as that dish was, I wanted to tweak it slightly. This time both of my scallop dishes are appetizers, Sea Scallops Two Ways- Ceviche And Gratin.

They’re delicious, great for entertaining, and simple to make. The Ceviche is a gluten-free dish. If you choose to use a gluten-free Panko, the gratin can be too. The specific change I wanted to make is in how I used the topping for this gratin. In my original recipe, the topping totally covered the top of the scallops. Even though the topping is an essential part of this dish, I wanted the scallops to peek through a bit more, allowing them to caramelize on the top. It’s really about the balance between the topping and the scallops themselves.

Anyway, let’s talk about my fresh mango and cucumber ceviche. I’m putting my spin on a Peruvian style Ceviche. They have these large popcorn kernels in Peru that you just can’t seem to get here. I just bought some corn nuts! You’ve seen those salty large corn kernels they sell in convenience stores. I just sprinkle of few on top of each serving. This gives the Ceviche great texture and crunch.

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When you’re ready to work with sea scallops,  there is a side-muscle on each scallop that needs to be removed. You don’t want to eat it. The pictures above help to illustrate what I mean. You also want to always pat the scallops dry using a paper towel to remove any excess moisture before continuing on with your recipes.

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Marinating seafood in citrus is very common in Latin cuisine and a great way to experience fresh scallops. If you decide to make these two appetizers, start with the Ceviche. You need to get the scallops cleaned and quartered, and submerged, into the citrus marinade.

My Scallop Gratin is just as easy to make. I’ve made some slight changes from my original recipe. I found less to be more in the presentation of the Scallop Gratin that makes a big difference in the final dish.

It doesn’t matter if you’re making them as a main course, using larger gratin dishes, or as an appetizer using smaller ones. The method is still the same. This time I’m not completely covering the scallops with the topping. I’m letting the scallops to peek through the topping allowing them to caramelize. The balance between the two works.

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Scallop Gratin:
Prep Time: 10 to 15 minutes
Cook Time: 10 to 13 minutes
Total Time: 28 minutes
Yields: 6 servings
Equipment: 2 rimmed baking sheets pans, 6 small grain dishes

Ingredients:
1 pound of cleaned, dried and quartered sea scallops
6 tablespoons of dry white wine
6 large garlic cloves, minced
1/2 a red onion, minced (substitute minced shallot)
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
3 tablespoons of finely chopped flat-leaf Italian parsley, plus extra for garnish
1 tablespoon of finely chopped basil leaves
zest of a lemon
2 tablespoon of fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons of Pernod (anise-flavored liqueur)
2 teaspoon of Kosher salt
1 teaspoon of black pepper
1 1/2 heaping cups of Panko (or gluten-free Panko) bread crumbs
6 tablespoons of olive oil
6 wedges of lemon to squeeze over the top of each dish when baked

Directions:
Preheat oven
to 425-degrees F.
Take 6 small gratin dishes, place on two baking sheets. Equally divided a pound of the cleaned, dried, and quartered scallops into each dish. Next, add one tablespoon of dry white wine to each of the dishes.

In a large bowl, add one stick of softened unsalted butter. To the softened butter add minced garlic, finely minced red onion (or minced shallot), crushed red pepper flakes (optional), fresh finely chopped Italian flat-leaf parsley, fresh finely chopped basil, lemon zest, fresh lemon juice, Pernod (anise-flavored  liqueur), Kosher salt, black pepper, Panko (or gluten-free Panko) breadcrumbs, and olive oil. Mix all these ingredients together to make the topping.

Using a spoon, equally, divide the topping between the six gratin dishes. Do not completely cover the scallops. This will allow the scallops to caramelize on top.

Cook for 10 to 13 minutes. As soon as they come out of the oven, squeeze some fresh lemon juice over each one of the Scallop Gratin and serve immediately.

Scallop Ceviche:
Yields: 4 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Inactive Prep Time: 3 1/2 to 4 hours
Total Time: 4 hours 15 minutes

Ingredients:
1/2 pound of Sea Scallops, quartered
5 limes, juiced
1/2 a red onion, finely diced
1 jalapeno, seeded and diced
1/2 an English cucumber, diced and seeded
2 fresh mangos, diced
2 avocados, sliced
1/2 cup of red bell pepper, finely diced
1/2 cup of yellow bell pepper, finely diced
1/2 cup of orange bell pepper, finely diced
1/2 tablespoon olive oil
1/8 teaspoon Kosher salt
3 to 4 fresh cilantro leaves per glass
corn nuts to garnish. 4 to 5 corn nuts per glass

Directions:
First, place the quartered scallops in a bowl (that has a lid to fit). Add the diced bell peppers, onions, jalapeno, Kosher salt, olive oil and fresh lime juice to the bowl. Stir all the ingredients together. Make sure all the ingredients are submerged in the lime juice. Place the lid on and refrigerate for 3 1/2 to 4 hours. Every half hour goes in a stir the ingredients. Then press all the ingredients down into the lime juice so they’re completely submerged.  When the scallops are completely opaque in color, they are ready.

At this point, slice the avocado spritzing them with a little lime juice so they stay bright green. Next, dice the mango and cucumber. Have 4 glasses or whatever you choose to serve your ceviche in ready.  Take the Ceviche out of the frig. Using a spoon, place an equal amount of the scallops with the diced bell peppers, jalapenos, and onions in each glass.

Add to each one equally, the diced mango, and cucumber. Garnish with avocado, cilantro leaves, and corn nuts. Place the glasses on a sheet tray and refrigerate until ready to serve.

http://www.YouTube.com/Linda Lou Hamel Scallops Two Ways

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Sea Scallop Gratin

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This is one of the most elegant dishes you can serve. It’s my Sea Scallop Gratin. This seafood dish is so delicious. Everyone you know will want your recipe once they’ve had it. They won’t believe how easy it is to make. Let’s start with the ingredients for the topping, my favorite part of this dish.

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Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cooking Time: 10 to 12 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Yields: 4 servings
Equipment: 12-inch sauté pan, 2 rimmed baking sheet pans, large mixing bowl, 4 gratin dishes

Ingredients:
1 pound sea scallops, sliced in half
10 tablespoons of unsalted butter, room temperature
6 cloves of garlic, minced
1 leek cleaned, finely sliced into half-moons
5 tablespoons of fresh Italian flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped,  reserve some for garnish.
2 tablespoons of freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 tablespoon of Pernod
2 teaspoons of Kosher salt
1 teaspoon of crushed red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon of black pepper
6 tablespoons of olive oil
3/4 cup of Panko breadcrumbs
4 tablespoons of dry white wine
1 lemon, cut into wedges for garnish

Directions:
Preheat oven to 425-degrees F.

First, prepare the leeks and garlic for sautèing.

Whenever using leeks you want to make sure you clean the sand from between the layers. The best way to do this is to cut the root end first. Then at the other end cut where the dark green meets the light green. Discard the dark green leaves. Next, slice down the leek lengthwise and rinse really well to get any sand or grit the may be trapped in there. Lay the leek cut side down, slice into very thin half-moons as seen in the picture above.

In a large sautèpan, over medium heat, melt 2 tablespoons of unsalted butter. Add the sliced leeks, stir to coat. Add crushed red pepper flakes, and Kosher salt. Sautè for 3 to 5 minutes. Once softened, (do not brown), add the minced garlic. Allow the garlic sautè for another minute until fragrant and soft. Turn the heat off, set aside.

Have the scallops on ice waiting for you in the frig until you are ready for them. Once the leeks and garlic have been sautèed, set them aside and prepare the topping.

In a mixing large bowl, add finely chopped fresh flat-leaf Italian parsley, 1 stick of softened room temperature unsalted butter, Pernod, lemon juice, Kosher salt, freshly cracked black pepper, olive oil, the cooled sautéed leeks, and Panko breadcrumbs, mix to combine. Set aside.

Place the 4 gratin dishes on two baking sheet pans.

Remove the side-muscle from each sea scallop. Transfer the scallops onto a plate lined with a paper towel. Take another paper towel and pat the scallops completely dry of any moisture. Cut the scallops into quarters and divide them evenly between the 4 gratin dishes. Add a tablespoon of wine to each dish. Spoon on top equal amounts of the garlic butter crumb topping between the four gratin dishes.

At this point, you could refrigerate the Sea Scallop Gratins up to an hour. Bake the gratins for 10 to 12 minutes until the crumb topping is a light golden brown.

To Serve: Garnish with Italian flat-leaf parsley and a few wedges of lemon. Squeeze the lemon over the dish right before serving. I like to serve my Sea Scallop Gratin with a simple arugula salad dressed lightly with a lemon vinaigrette.

 

Homemade Vinaigrette Recipes- Lemon, Balsamic, And Cilantro Lime

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