Bhutan…

Thursday, December 22 –

This dinner was wonderful and easy to put together before the Christmas madness. We had Wonderful Boyfriend, Roommate Extraordinaire, WingWoman, LightsOn, and our newest blog participant, CannonBall (who is LightsOn’s daughter). CannonBall is a self-admitted super picky eater, so I was a little nervous as to how this sort of food experiment would work for her. But! She was super excited, and I was super excited to have someone try something new. Give it your all at least once, right?

For these recipes I started with chopping all of my veggies and prepping all of the ingredients. It seemed easier to just get all the stuff together first, because I was going to have to cook both recipes at the same time. Instead of using a food processor I just chopped everything by hand, putting all of the different ingredients in separate bowls. Last I cut the dried pork into strips and the pork shoulder into bite-sized pieces. I put the unsalted butter into the pan, followed by the chili powder and the salt. I let it start to bubble and then I added the pork shoulder. I seared the chunks so they were browned on most sides and then put the onion pieces on top. That was followed by the daikon radish pieces and ginger (yes, I know I did it out of order from the recipe). Instead of simmering on low for an hour and a half I simmered on medium high for a half hour. I steamed the bok choy separately and added it to the mix at about the half hour mark. Then in went the dried pork strips and I put the lid back on to let it bubble together.

On the side, I was also cooking the buckwheat noodles, which sadly had gluten in them, and so I steamed broccoli on the side for WingWoman. I was running out of pans and burners at this point, so instead of a beautifully formed omelet I ended up making something much closer to scrambled eggs with salt and pepper in it. I also used 6 eggs instead of 3 because we had 6 people to dinner. (That and I figured that even eggs are usually safe for picky eaters, so having a little more would be a good thing.)

I also sauteed the jalapenos on the side to keep the heat down for CannonBall. But WingWoman and I taste tested the pork and found it to be bordering on really bland. So I added a little more salt and upended the container of chili powder until the sauce was glowing red. Didn’t really help keep the spice down (oops!) but it did taste amazing!

With Sriracha on the table for us spicy people and wine on the table thanks to WingWoman, LightsOn, and Roommate Extraordinaire, dinner was ready!

As you can see by this photo, it was a steaming, spicy pile of glorious food. Everyone had the spicy food sniffles, and no one complained about my chili powder dumping except for CannonBall. Who, actually, did really, really well! She ate most of the stuff on her plate, even with the spice! I’m very proud of her. She even helped me pin the map! It was all very exciting.

Bhutan
(recipes borrowed from the cooks at: www.peisch.com)

Buckwheat Noodles With Egg Strips And Scallion (Bumthang Putta)

  • 1 bunch large scallions, trimmed and cut into lengths to fit the feed tube
  • 1 small onion, peeled and quartered
  • 1 medium tomato, quartered
  • 3 large eggs
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1/2 pound Japanese buckwheat noodles (soba)

Cook the noodles in a saucepan of boiling water until just tender. Drain and rinse under cold water. Reserve.

Slice the scallions with the thin [2mm] slicing disc. Set aside. Chop the onion coarsely with the metal blade, about 5 pulses. Set aside. Chop the tomato, about 4 pulses.

Beat the eggs in a bowl with salt and pepper to taste. Heat 1 teaspoon oil in a nonstick 10-inch skillet over medium-high heat, add the eggs, and cook, tilting the skillet to let the uncooked egg flow underneath the omelet, until set, 2 to 3 minutes. Invert onto a cutting board and cut into 1/4-inch strips.

Cook the onion in the remaining 2 teaspoons oil in the skillet over moderate heat, stirring, until browned, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the scallions and tomato and cook until softened, about 3 minutes.

Add the noodles and egg strips and toss carefully over low heat until heated through. Makes 6 servings.

Pork with Radish and Bok Choy (Phaksha Pa)

  • 1 medium onion [about 4 ounces, 110g], peeled and quartered
  • Fresh ginger, peeled and cut into a 1 inch [2.5cm] cube
  • 1 medium daikon or white radish [about 31/2 ounces, 100g], peeled, halved lengthwise, and cut crosswise to fit the feed tube
  • 1 stick unsalted butter [4 ounces, 40g]
  • 1 pound boneless pork shoulder [450g], cut into 6 by 1/2 inch [15 by 1.25cm] strips
  • 1/2 cup water [120ml]
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 3 large heads bok choy [about 3 pounds total, 1.3kg], stems removed and leaves cut into 1/2-inch [1.25cm] strips
  • 6 ounces dried pork [170g], cut into 3 by 1/2 inch [7.5 by 1.25cm] strips
  • 1 large fresh green chili pepper [about 1/2 ounce, 15g], seeded and cut into julienne strips

Chop the onion coarsely with the metal blade of a food processor, about 4 pulses. Set aside.

Drop the ginger through the feed tube with the motor running and chop finely, about 10 seconds. Set aside. Slice the daikon with the thick [6mm] slicing disc.

Melt the butter in a large saucepan. Add the pork shoulder, onion, daikon, water, chili powder, and salt and simmer over low heat until the pork is just tender, about 1 hour and 25 minutes.

Meanwhile, cook the bok choy in a saucepan of boiling water until tender, about 5 minutes. Drain.

Add the ginger, bok choy, dried pork, and chili pepper to the stew and simmer over low heat until heated through, 5 to 10 minutes. Makes 6 servings.

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About devouringworldbites

A girl on a mission to cook, eat, and write about the world, one country at a time. View all posts by devouringworldbites

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