Monthly Archives: July 2016

Kung Pao Chicken

Kung Pao Chicken
Recipe Type: Main
Cuisine: Asian
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 4
  • Marinade
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons rice vinegar or dry sherry
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1 pound boneless, skinless, chicken breasts or thighs, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • Sauce
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon hoisin sauce
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp. honey
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground Szechuan peppercorns
  • 2 vegetable oil
  • 6 dried red chilies
  • 3 green onions, thinly sliced (seperate green and white)
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon minced or grated fresh ginger
  • 1/4 cup unsalted dry-roasted peanuts
  1. Marinate the chicken – using a medium sized bowl, mix soy sauce, rice vinegar, and cornstarch until the cornstarch is dissolved. Add the chicken and stir gently to coat. Let stand at room temperature for 10 minutes (while preparing sauce)
  2. In another bowl, mix balsamic, soy sauce, hoisin sauce, sesame oil, honey, cornstarch, and Szechuan pepper. Stir until all has dissolved and is mixed well, then set aside.
  3. Heat a wok or large skillet over high heat (when a bead of water sizzles and evaporates on contact). Add vegetable oil and coat the base. Add chilies and stir-fry for about 30 seconds, or until the chilies have just begun to blacken and the oil is slightly fragrant. Add the chicken and stir-fry until no longer pink, 2 to 3 minutes.
  4. Add green onion whites, garlic, and ginger and stir-fry for about 30 seconds. Pour in the sauce and mix to coat the other ingredients. Stir in the peanuts and cook for another 1 to 2 minutes. Transfer to a serving plate, sprinkle green onion greens over top, and serve.


Gin Sling

Gin Sling
Recipe Type: Drinks
Prep time:
Total time:
Serves: 1
  • 1 1/2 oz gin
  • 3/4 oz fresh lemon juice
  • 3/4 oz simple syrup
  • 1/2 oz sweet vermouth
  • 3 dashes Angostura bitters
  • soda water
  • lemon peel (spiral for garnish)
  1. combine gin, lemon juice, simple syrup, vermouth and bitters in shaker that is 1/2 full of ice.
  2. shake well, and strain into tall collins glass, over ice. Top with soda, add lemon peel garnish


Pulled Pork 2016

Pulled Pork 2016
Recipe Type: Main
Author: Ray
Prep time:
Cook time:
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Serves: 12
  • 1.5 cups water
  • 1/4 cup malt vinegar
  • 1/4 cup lemongrass mint balsamic vinegar
  • 2 medium yellow onions, sliced
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 4.6 lb pork shoulder, bone in
  • 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 tsp. red robin seasoning salt
  • 1 tsp. ground pepper
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. smoked sweet paprika
  • 1 tsp. cocoa powder
  1. Add water and vinegars to crock pot, add sliced onion
  2. Rub oil over pork shoulder, and let rest
  3. Mix all other ingredients together, then rub into pork shoulder
  4. Place roast onto onions in crockpot, and cook on low, 8 hours.
  5. Remove roast from crock pot, remove bone, and shred.
  6. Strain fat from liquid in crockpot, and put liquid into saucepan.
  7. Simmer liquid to thicken, then add to shredded pork.
  8. Place pork into roaster, and broil for a few minutes, to create some crispy bits of meat. Stir, and broil again if desired.
  9. Lightly toast brioche buns


A Tequila Cocktail

bitters_orangeGBAbottle_reposadoSince an anniversary dinner a few weeks ago at Woodwork (awesome dinner, and spectacular cocktails with my fabulous wife – 27 years together!), I’ve become very interested in cocktails that use bitters.  Never had one until this dinner, and I found them to be very intriguing – and surprised how they can impact the flavour of a drink.
This evening I was ‘experimenting’ 🙂
I took a slice of lime, about 1/2″ thick, quartered it, then tossed it into a highball glass.
Added a raw brown sugar cube, and then added a couple dashes of Fee Brothers Orange Bitters onto the sugar cube.  Added a splash of Lime Perrier soda water, then muddled to cruh and dissolve the sugar cube and release the lime juice.
brown-sugar-cubesPerrier_Lime_33clCanAdded 2 oz. El Jimador tequila, then added some ice cubes to fill the glass, and then more soda water, and a gentle stir.
Very tasty !!!lime_quartered

More Espresso machine maintenance

Well, I finally got around to getting a replacement control box, and a new pump.  For just over 6 months I’ve been making pour-overs (and enjoying them) – while my espresso machine sat idle.  The control box was behaving erratically, I suspect because of excessive heat within the machine.  Then the vibe pump failed around New Years.
So, I replaced the control box with another Giemme RLO 1E/1S/3C/F, and the pump I ended up replacing with a different one – an MG 071 Fluidotech Oscillating Pump.  This pump is a 70W pump, vs. the 52W Ulka vibe pump – should fill a little more quickly, resulting is shorter cycle times, and hopefully, last longer.  Another really pleasing feature, is that it’s SUBSTANTIALLY quieter!
Everything was easily swapped out – and after getting the boiler refilled, everything is working great once again!
I think I might tear it down again though in the not too distant future, and see about rewiring the machine so that I can tidy up the wiring, and relocate the control box in the space where the water reservoir was (I have the machine plumbed in, so no water reservoir is required).
I also found a place where I might be able to get the old control box repaired – would be nice to have a backup that didn’t cost so much!