Monday, May 31, 2010


Korokke is the Japanese version of a nugget. The main ingredient is mashed potatoes and it is combined either with chopped meat, seafood or vegetables. The korokke can be dipped in worcestershire sauce or simply in ketchup.

Serves 4
Preparation Time: 5 mins
Cooking Time: 20 mins
Printable Recipe


1 1/2 lb Yukon gold potatoes, peeled
1/2 lb ground pork and beef, mixed
1 small onion, cubed
1 egg, beaten
1/4 cup water
1/2 cup all-purpose flour or cake flour, sifted
1 tsp salt
1 tsp nutmeg
Bread crumbs


1. Cook potatoes until soft in boiling salted water. Mash the potatoes.

2. In a skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. Sauté onion until transparent. Set aside. Cook ground meat until browned. Remove from heat.

3. Combine meat, onion and potatoes. Shape it into 1-inch patties.

4. In a small bowl, combine egg, water, flour, salt, nutmeg.

5. Dip potato patties in the batter and coat with bread crumbs.

6. Heat oil for deep-frying to 350F. Fry until golden brown, about 1-2 mins per side. Serve.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Lobster with Ginger and Scallions

Have you ever order lobster in a Chinese restaurant? The Chinese has its own way in preparing and cooking the lobster. Most people are used to cook lobster in boiling water, check out my past blog post: Lobster with Pasta and Spicy Lobster. The Chinese first cut the lobster into pieces and isolate the tomalley (green substance) and roe (black stuff similar to caviar) which will be cook separately. The tomalley and roe are first steamed in order to fully cooked them (roe becomes red when fully cooked). The lobster parts are then stir-fry in a wok and the tomalley-roe are added afterward. It is common to deep fry cooked lobster, but this step is optional.

IMPORTANT: Almost every part of the lobster are edible, except for the head sack behind the lobster eyes. Remove the black veins found at the bottom of the tail. I think that is about it. Let me know if I missed anything.

Here is a crush course on how to prepare lobster, the Chinese way. If needed, click here for the anatomy of the lobster. Be aware, this is one of the messiest preparation, better do it outside. Check out the step-by-step pictures for guidance.

For 2 lobsters
Preparation Time: 20 mins
Cooking Time: 15 mins
Printable Recipe


2 lobsters
pinches of corn starch
3 tbsp ginger, cut into sticks
4-5 scallions, green parts only, cut into thirds
2-3 tbsp light soy sauce
1 tbsp rice cooking wine


Cutting Lobster

 1. Make sure that the lobster is fully clean before cutting.

2. Using a butcher knife or sharp chef's knife, cut lobster in half at the abdomen.

3. With the abdomen/tail, discard black veins, reserve the roe and chop into 4-6 pieces.

4. With the top part, chop arms and claws.

5. Using both hands, separate legs from its top shell.

6. With the legs, reserve the tomalley (green substance) and cut the ends of each leg.

7. With the shell, discard antennas, head sack and eyes. Cut the shell in half lengthwise which will be used as a holder. Place tomalley and roe on both shells.

Cooking Lobster

1. Place 2-3 scallions, ginger and a pinch of cornstarch over each tomalley-roe.

2. Steam for 5-10 mins until roe is fully cooked. Set aside.

3. In a wok, heat oil over medium-high heat. Stir fry ginger and lobster until the shell turns red and meat turns white, about 5-10 mins.

4. Add in tomalley-roe and scallions. Stir fry for 1-2 mins.

5. Add soy sauce, rice cooking wine, and about 1/4 cup water to prevent from drying. Cover for 2-3 mins. Serve.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Tuna Pasta Casserole

One important keypoint in cooking is the mise en place, making sure that all the necessary ingredients and equipments are available. Last year, I attempted to make a seafood pasta casserole, and it ended to be a simple pasta casserole with vegetables as I thought I had some canned crab meat and tuna. This time, I made the casserole better and tastier with cheese gratin.

Serves 8
Preparation Time: 5 mins
Cooking + Baking Time: 25 mins
Printable Recipe


300g macaroni
2 cans cream of mushroom soup
1 1/2 cup whole milk
2 cups frozen vegetables (peas, corn, green beans)
2 cans tuna
ground pepper
bread crumbs mixed with melted butter
Mozzarella cheese


1. Cook pasta in salted boiling water, 2 mins less as package directed.

2. Preheat oven to 425F.

3. Meanwhile, in a saucepan, add cream of mushroom soup and milk until mixture is smooth over low heat, about 5 minutes.

4. Add frozen vegetables and 1/3 cup of mozzarella. Season with ground pepper.

5. In a 13'' x 9'' baking pan, mix pasta with the cream texture. Top with buttered bread crumbs and cover with mozzarella cheese.

 6. Bake for 15 mins until it reaches a gratin.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Shrimp Gratin

Being part of a foodie community helps me learn a lot on how to improve specific elements on my blog. Since the launch of this blog, I have been trying to improve my skills in taking decent quality pictures. Food photography is not obvious, and this is one element that most foodies struggle with. Most of my cooking sessions occur at night, and it is kind hard of extracting as much of the natural light, so some of the pictures tend to be dark in the background. The past few months, I have been manually configuring my camera settings such as the white balance, exposure compensation and sensitivity depending on the environment. I still need a bit more practice...  

Here I present the second seafood dish made by my friend from l'Ile de la Réunion. It is a shrimp casserole topped with bread crumbs and grated cheese, baked until it reaches a gratin, a great comfort food. The ingredients were done by eye, so the quantity are guestimated.

Preparation Time: 5 mins
Cooking Time: 10 mins
Baking Time: 10-15 mins
Printable Recipe


300g shrimp, deveined
2-3 tbsp all-purpose flour
2 egg yolks
1/4-1/2 cup warm milk
Slices of bread, cubed
Grated cheese such as mozzarella, gruyère
Bread crumbs


1. Preheat oven to 425F.

2. In a large skillet, cook shrimp with a bit of butter over medium heat.

3. Turn to low heat, gradually mix in the flour, stirring constantly.

4. Pour in the warm milk, stir until it reaches a creamy texture.

5. Turn off heat. Stir in egg yolks and 1/4 cup of grated cheese.

6. Transfer mixture to a baking pan. Top with bread cubes, cheese and bread crumbs. For taste, add 2-3 tbsp of butter over the cheese.

7. Bake for 10-15 mins until it reaches a gratin.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Honey Joys

I notice sometimes that Aussie tend to put crushed corn flakes into cookies and brownies to give it a crunch. I experienced once the Afghan cookie at Toutière Australienne, a bite of that cookie felt very different from the cookies I'm used to eat here in Montreal.

My Aussie friend made Honey Joys, a fun and sweet party snack. It is straightforward to make as it only requires binding the corn flakes with some sweet. This recipe is pretty much standard and can be found on Kellogg's Australia and New Zealand website.

Makes 24
Cooking Time: 5 mins
Baking Time: 10 mins
Printable Recipe


1/3 cup butter or margarine
1/3 cup sugar
1 tbsp honey or maple syrup
4 cups corn flakes


1. Preheat oven to 300F.

2. In a saucepan, melt butter, sugar and honey until foamy over medium heat.

3. Add corn flakes and mix well.

4. Spoon into 24 cupcake patty pans. Bake for 10 mins. Cool.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Fiery Tuna Pie

Last week, I organized a seafood night with the people from work. It has been a while that we didn't cook as a group because of the final exam period. Seafood dishes are what we needed to reward ourselves for hard and painful study.

My Mexican friend, Mon made a tuna pie on puff pastry with a twist of spiciness.  If you can't handle the heat, omit the jalapeno peppers.

Preparation Time: 5 mins
Cooking Time: 10 mins
Baking Time: 15 mins
Printable Recipe


2 sheets puff pastry
1 onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
3 tomatoes, diced
1 Knorr shrimp cube
few sprigs of parsley
2 cans of tuna
Capers to taste
Jalapeno peppers preserved in vinegar to taste


1. Preheat oven to 430F.

2. In a skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. Cook onions until transparent, add in garlic.

3. Add tomatoes and the Knorr shrimp cube to skillet and cook for 2-3 mins. Add parsley.

4. Add in tuna and capers. Simmer for 2-3 mins. Add in jalapeno peppers with a few drops of the vinegar. Set aside.

5. Butter a round pyrex dish. Roll out 1 1/3 sheets of puff pastry to cover bottom of the dish.

6. Add the fillings. 

7. Roll out the remaining puff pastry. Pinch the edges together and poke holes with a fork on top.

8. Bake for 15 mins or until golden brown.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Palak Paneer

This is one of my craziest week ever and it will be even more crazier for the following ones as I'm in the process of writing my thesis. I will try my hardest of posting recipes at least once a week. To let you all know, my deadline is on June 21.

Here is the first Indian dish on Random Cuisine. I have to admit that I'm not a spice person so I don't have a large inventory of spices. I love the taste of Indian food and it does require a fair amount of spices. I'm glad that my Australian friend is into Indian cuisine because I always wanted to explore this cuisine. Palak Paneer consists of spinach and paneer cheese cooked in a curry sauce. I'm very impressed of the results. If you have never tried Indian dish, follow this recipe. He also sent me the recipe for homemade paneer. Unfortunately, I don't have step-by-step instructions, but it is straightforward to make it. Let me know of the results.

Serves 6-8
Preparation Time: 10 mins
Cooking Time: 20 mins
Printable Recipe


1 large bunch of spinach, shredded or 2 pks frozen spinach (16 oz.)
100-200 g paneer, cut into cubes
1 large brown onion, chopped
2 tomatoes, diced
2 cloves of garlic, very finely chopped
2 tsp garam masala
2 tsp cumin powder
1 tsp ginger powder
1/4 tsp hot chilli powder
2 shelled cardamon pods with the seeds broken up finely
pinch of salt
4 leaves of coriander, chopped, plus for garnish
Basmati rice


1. In large pot, boil spinach in 2 cm of boiling water, with the lid on.

2. In a skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Cook onion until transparent. Add in garlic and cook for 1 min until fragrant.

3. Once the spinach has softened, add in onions, garlic and tomatoes. Let it cook together with the lid on, over medium heat, stirring occasionally.

4. Meanwhile, fry paneer until the edges are slightly brown, and set aside.

5. Add spices and coriander to the pot. Taste and add more spices if necessary.

6. Once vegetables are cooked, add paneer. Let it warm and thicken with the lid off, over low heat.

7. Serve palak paneer on top of basmati rice. Garnish with coriander.


about 2 L whole milk
Juice of one lemon


In a clean pot, heat milk over high heat until it bubbles quickly up toward the rim of the pot. Immediately turn off the heat and drizzle in the strained juice of 1 lemon. Stir slowly and steadily with a clean spoon, around and around in one direction, until the curd (soft solid white bits) separates from the whey (yellowish-clear liquid), about 1 minute. (If it doesn't separate after a minute, put the pot over very low heat for about 30 seconds, stirring slowly--this should do the trick.) Stir slowly for another minute, then pour the curds and whey into a strainer lined with 3 layers of rinsed and squeezed cheesecloth set over a bowl to catch the whey. After most of the whey has drained into the bowl, gather up the edges of the cheesecloth and twist them to form a little ball of the curds and squeeze a bit more whey out; rinse the outside of the cheesecloth-wrapped ball for a minute under lukewarm running water, then put it back in the strainer and weight it down with a can or something heavy. Refrigerate for an hour or so, then unwrap the paneer and use it. Makes about 200 g of paneer.


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