Monday, January 11, 2010

Simmering a New Cuisine




Last night after hours of working on Cell Cuisine Software and ideas that will help in flow charting, I was all up for something fun and full of my love to cook. In the midst of the cold and snow I raided the refrigerator for leftovers.  The principles of simple good cooking make jewels out the the tiniest ingredients.  Spending not a dime, and sipping a little Oregon Pinot Noir all along the way I was on to steaming chicken wings with spices all meant for a larger idea.  It is the kind of dish you want to enjoy, so if you are in a hurry, save it for a time that gets you some music and chop, slice and dice moments.

As I cut up vegetables, my mind shot to a recent issue from the science section of The New York Times.  It focused on Calorie Reduction (CR) for longevity as a way to turn on certain genes, called sirt genes that produce a protein called, sirtuins.  The article went on to say that sirtuins can detect energy reserves in a cell and there is a method to activate through this idea of Calorie Restriction.  For me at that moment, my stomach was far more important but subconsciously sirtuin success is on my mind. I shifted to the art of cook but with careful execution of a lean low calorie finished dish. I am head to research that sirtuin idea to a fuller extent this weekend.  On the other side of fun, I am also out to use this cold and snow to skate and learn to ski!  Love those Winter sports!

Enjoy my rendition of a Chinese Borscht!  Even the beautiful Chinese lady who had a chance to experience the alchemy was amazed at the depth of flavor and mystery of raising a savory sort out of what looked like mindless mass of parts and pieces. Never underestimate the powder of  leftovers and the CHARM of a good cook’s talent!  While the recipe is rough a trip to a web site or cookbook for a guildeline on Borscht might help.  I leave out the sour cream and garnishes. There is more than enough flavor, at least for me.   Viva la Cell Cuisine!

Ingredients
2     oz. sausage of any kind, cut into 1 inch pieces
4-5   raw, rinsed and dried chicken wings
3-4   oz pork carnitas
4-5   red radish, slice thinly
1-2   heads baby bokchoy, cut lengthwise into quarters, or chunks of cabbage
4-5   scallions, whites and greens in two piles, cut into 3” pieces
4-5   mushrooms of your choice, ¼ if large, ½ if medium
3-4   beets, roasted and peeled separate or peeled and steamed in the stock
1      nugget of fresh ginger, peeled and julienne
½     bag, washed and stemmed spinach
¼     cup of parsley stems
1      teas chinese sichuan pepperrorns
½     tbl black pepper corns
1      qt water
2       tbl whey powder
2       tbl  soy sauce of your choice
freshly ground salt and pepper

Method
Fir a steam rack into a pan.  Add the chicken wings. Pour over half the water.  Top with the scallion greens, parsley stems, chinese peppercorns, and half the ginger.  Salt and pepper to taste.  Cover and steam slowly, turning about in ten minutes.  Cooked through.  Remove and cool.  Reserve the stock. Do not strain.

Pull the chicken meat from the bones.  Place the bones back in the original pot and add the other half of the water.  Simmer gently reducing the liquid by ¼. Strain.

To finish the dish, put the liquid back on a medium heat.  Add the beats, quartered.  Simmer until almost cooked.  Add the mushrooms and balance of the ginger and simmer. Next drop in the bokchoy and simmer until cooked.  Remove the cooked bokchoy and plate to each of two deep soup plates or bowls.  Add the sausage, the pork carnitas, the scallion whites and soy sauce.

While gently cooking drop in the spinach carefully.   When it is cooked fully, remove half to each of the bowls with the bokchoy.  Remove the carnitas, the pork sausage and arrange each of the ingredients neatly in the bowls.  Simmer the broth.  Remove two tablespoons of the broth to a bowl and make a paste with the whey.  Turn off the heat and mix into the broth.  Adjust the broth with fresh salt and pepper and pour over the neatly arranged bowl ingredients.  Top with the slivered radish.  ENJOY!