Category Archives: Mains

Banh Mi (Vietnamese-Style Pork Sandwiches)

Banhmi1

I can’t remember the first time I had a Banh Mi and it certainly wasn’t at a restaurant.  In fact, now that I am dusting away at my memory cobwebs, I think I was searching in my Google Reader for a recipe when I had a pork tenderloin to use-up a while back and came upon Bridget’s recipe for Banh Mi and knew I couldn’t go wrong.

Why couldn’t I go wrong…because the flavours are oh-so-right (lame, I know!).  But Banh Mi has a flavour profile that just has to be given high-praise and as a bonus, it truly is a quick and easy meal to prepare.  As Bridget describes in her post, it isn’t the most authentic recipe, but I agree with her that “taste will trump authenticity every time”.  Don’t get me wrong…this is pretty close to authentic (although I am soon to test that statement when I finally get over to Banh Mi Boys in Toronto).

Nonetheless, this is a great recipe.  I, like Bridget, made a few switches, didn’t bother with a mandoline – hand-slicing worked just fine and I used greek yogurt to lighten-up the mayo.

Definitely give this inexpensive meal a shot if you are looking for a new twist on your pork tenderloin recipes, or just a delicious sandwich to impress!

BanhMi2

Banh Mi (Vietnamese-Style Pork Sandwiches)

Yield:  4 servings
Prep Time:  20 minutes
Cook Time:  20 minutes

Ingredients:

  • ½ cup rice vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons sriracha
  • 4 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 3 regular red radishes, sliced
  • 15 baby carrots, julienned by hand
  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup greek yogurt
  • 1 pork tenderloin (about 1 pound)
  • 2 teaspoons five-spice powder (I was a little more generous)
  • 4 hoagie buns (or 1 24-inch baguette, cut into 4 pieces and split partially open lengthwise)
  • 1 cup fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1/2 cucumber, sliced thinly

Directions:

1. Combine vinegar and sugar in microwave-safe bowl. Heat until sugar has dissolved, about 90 seconds. Add 1 tablespoon sriracha, 2 tablespoons fish sauce, radish and carrot to bowl and toss to combine. Set aside for 15 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, whisk mayonnaise, remaining 1 tablespoon sriracha and remaining 2 tablespoons fish sauce together in second bowl.  Set aside.

3. Ensure your pork is dry (rub with paper towel) and rub pork with five-spice powder.

4. Cook Pork (choose whichever method you prefer – I’ve done both and they are equally as good).

  • Grill pork over hot burner until browned on all sides and pork registers 145 degrees, 12 to 14 minutes.
  • Heat a cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat and grill pork for approximately 6-7 minutes, per side, or until pork registers 145 degrees (I rotate my pork 4 times, so each side is nice and brown).

Transfer cooked pork to cutting board, tent with foil, and let rest 5 minutes. Grill bread until lightly toasted, about 1 minute (not essential).

4. Slice pork crosswise into thin slices. Drain vegetables. Spread mayonnaise on inner sides of bread halves. Arrange slices of pork on bread and top with vegetables and cilantro. Serve.

Enjoy!

Recipe slightly adapted from The Way The Cookie Crumbles, originally from America’s Test Kitchen Feed

1 Comment

Filed under Appetizers, Bread, Healthy, Mains, Thai, Vietnamese

Smoked Salmon, Spinach and Goat Cheese Pizza

SalmonPizzaShot1

Remember in this post when I said that my Spinach and Goat Cheese Dip was versatile?  Well, here is one example of that (and I have another great use for it coming soon!)

I had left-over smoked salmon after a bridesmaids brunch I hosted, so I was trying to figure out what to do with it.  Instead of simply serving it over bagels for dinner, I prepared a batch of thin-crust pizza dough, made a quick batch of the spinach and goat cheese dip and voila, an easy, quick and delicious dinner (not to mention quite healthy too!)

It’s a great way to use-up spinach that is nearing the end of its life, however it looks incredibly fancy and I would consider serving this as an appy at my next get-together.  The onions (and capers – which aren’t photographed here) are a great touch and finish it off just perfectly.

Enjoy!

SmokedSalmonShot2

Smoked Salmon, Spinach and Goat Cheese Pizza

Serving Size:  1 medium pizza
Prep Time:  20 minutes, excluding the pizza dough preparation
Cook Time:  10-15 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1 batch of your favourite thin-crust pizza dough, or store-bought crust
  • 1 batch of Spinach and Goat Cheese Dip
  • 10-15 slices of smoked salmon
  • 1/4 cup red onion, diced
  • 1/2 jar capers, drained and rinsed (optional – not shown)
  • Additional goat cheese for topping, if desired
  • Olive Oil

Directions:

Preheat your oven to 500 degrees (and if you have a pizza stone, preheat that as well).  It is good to allow your pizza stone to pre-heat in a 500 degree oven for at least an additional 15 minutes.

If you have a pizza peel, lay that on the counter.  Otherwise, prepare a sheet of parchment paper (either square or cut to shape of your dough).

Prepare your dough. On top of your parchment paper or your pizza peel, roll out the dough into a round pizza shape.  Leave an edge around outside for the crust. Once you’ve achieved the shape you desire, pinch the outside of the dough to create a crust. Then pierce the crust with a fork all the way around (this will prevent large air bubbles from forming in your crust while it bakes!).

Brush the dough with a light coat of olive oil.

Bake the plain crust in the oven for about 7-9 minutes.

Remove the crust from the oven, spread the spinach and goat cheese sauce onto your crust and place back in over for an additional 7-8 minutes, or until crust is golden brown.

Remove the crust from the oven, immediately top your pizza with the smoked salmon, onions and capers.  Serve immediately.

Enjoy!

JBean Cuisine original recipe

Leave a comment

Filed under Appetizers, Bread, Healthy, Mains

Indian Butter Chicken

Butterchickenshot1

What brings people together better than food?  Nothing, in my opinion.  And nothing better than my Indian Butter Chicken recipe.  I can count a few friends that I swear only became good friends because of my butter chicken recipe.  It’s my arsenal for Indian food lovers and has many fans.  I remember making it for the first time – it was in our condo in Vancouver about 7 years ago.  I’ve made it for friends before the Rascal Flats concert, for non-Indian food lovers who now like it and many times beyond that.

Is this recipe healthy? Not exactly, but everything in moderation (unless you are CH and eat more than a regular serving of this!) Nonetheless, it is an easy to prepare.  As with a lot of Indian dishes, this gets better with time – so if you are aiming for high-praise, make this the night before you want to serve it and simply re-heat over low temperature the next day.  Trust me!

Feel free to add a bit of spice by increasing the green chili (some of our friends like it Indian “hot” which basically means 10 out of 10 hot).  You can also stir-in some sriracha (which is totally un-traditional, but it adds a great kick!)

Butterchickenshot2

Indian Butter Chicken

Yield: 6 – 10 servings (depends on accompaniments)
Prep Time:  25 minutes (+2hrs marinating)
Cook Time:  1hr

Ingredients:

  • 1.5lbs chicken pieces (I use a mixture of thighs and breasts)
  • 1 tsp grated garlic
  • 1 ts grated ginger
  • 1 tsp grated green chilli
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 1 tsp thana jeero (can be made using half cumin and half corriander)
  • 1 tsp red chili powder
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 small onion, diced finely
  • 1 TBSP olive oil
  • 6 TBSP butter (or ghee)
  • 3/4 cup half and half cream
  • 3/4 cup plain yogurt
  • 1/4 tomato sauce
  • 1 cup of water (if needed)
  • cilantro for garnish

Directions:

In a large glass bowl, mix together the ginger, garlic, green chili, garam masala, thana jeeroo, red chili powder, turmeric powder and salt with 1 TBSP of olive oil to make a spice paste.

Add the chicken to the spice paste, mix well and cover the bowl with saran wrap.  Marinate in fridge for a minimum of 2hrs (I usually try to marinade over night).

In a large saucepan, heat the butter over medium-low heat. Add-in the onions and saute until lightly browned.

Add the marinated chicken to the onions and stir.  Cover the pan and allow to cook on medium-low heat for 20 to 30 minutes, or till chicken is thoroughly cooked.  Stir frequently while cooking.

Add the cream to the pan, stir and cook on medium-low heat for 5 to 10 minutes.

Add yogurt and water (if you want a thicker sauce, do not add the water).  Stir well and allow to cook for a minute or two.

Add in the tomato sauce and allow to cook for an additional 10 minutes over low-heat.

Keep warm until ready to serve*.  Garnish with cilantro and serve with basmati rice and naan bread.

Enjoy.

*If you are making this ahead for the next day, simply allow the dish to cool, cover and keep in the fridge.  When ready to serve, place it back in a sauce pan and re-heat over low heat.  I sometimes add a bit of chicken stock to the pan while re-heating if the sauce becomes too thick.

Recipe Adapted Slightly from Daksha’s Gourmet Spices

4 Comments

Filed under Indian, Mains