Hi. My name's Carol, and I love food. No, you don't understand. I love food. If I were on the Titanic, I'd be in the galley (kitchen) eating up the chocolate pudding and the roasted quail. I go to most events, activities and parties just for the food. The company and the conversation are secondary. Here, I'll try to document everything that goes into my mouth. Aren't we excited? Oh, hey, are you gonna eat that?
Thursday, November 4, 2010
Thai Beef (Chicken) with Chiles and Basil
I was watching an episode of Martha Stewart's Everyday Food two weeks ago when the Thai Beef with Chiles and Basil over Coconut Rice recipe caught my eye as a dish I could readily make with simple ingredients and simple preparation, with a complex, exotic result.
It also dovetailed nicely with my current Asian mood. Give me a bowl of rice and some vegetables and meat, that's all I need.
Quickly, I ascertained ground chicken would come closest to the full flavor of ground beef sirloin. Sure, going chicken was for my figure, but I also prefer the flavor. Beef has tasted kind of gross to me as a post-young adult, except in certain (Taco Hut) circumstances.
H-Mart is an Asian supermarket across from Alderwood mall in Lynnwood, WA. It provides everything a person like me requires, from roasted laver (nori seaweed) and kim chee, to 10 different kinds of tofu, Thai chiles, Thai basil, and Nam Pla (fish sauce). They say you can substitute regular basil for Thai basil, but don't. It's not the same. Thai's much better. Also, don't worry too much about the stinky smell of fish sauce. Fish sauce is similar to anchovies; once it's in there, it makes everything taste better.
Because I'm Korean and I grew up a fan of spicy foods, I used way more Thai chiles (they come in a big batch in green, red and orange, and are hotter than heck) than Martha Stewart and her team called for.
I added some chopped green onion to the soy mixture, which provides the bulk of the flavor. You could even get away with using a tad less soy sauce.
I forgot to squeeze some lime at the end, though, but I'll do that with the leftovers.
I may even use this as a base for future curries. I've always wondered what the ratio was of curry paste to fish sauce and coconut milk. I think I'm closer to finding out.
One other thing: I didn't make my Jasmine rice coconutty. Not because there's anything wrong with coconut rice. Just because I prefer my rice--jasmine, Basmati and short-grain--unadulterated. Again, my Korean upbringing.