Monday, September 23, 2013
Dinner Plates of Delight
Dinner Plate One
For whatever crazy reason, I've been CRAVING hot wings. I've tried dipping pork into the hot wing sauce, and while its tongue tingling exciting, it's not hot wings, if ya know what I mean..... So, I began a quest of re-inventing hot wings without any food cheats.
Up first was to pull out the chicken....ok now this was a stumper. Pork would fill in for the protein aspect, but what about that crispy skin holding the sauce, and providing a secondary flavor and texture profile.
A few weeks ago, I found a vegetarian making "fried chicken" on youtube. She took fakey chicken pieces coated it in egg and then dredged in a flour and fried it. It was crispy! It clung to the meat! But she used egg and wheat flour, and if you minus those and substitute other items it all goes south quickly. And tis battered, not what I'm after at all. But it did get my brain working......
Saturday was "Operation Hot Wing". I took pork, cut them into finger sized pieces, flavored them with salt, pepper and onion powder and let sit for a bit. Then I placed corn starch on a plate, filled a plate with hot water and dipped a rice paper wrapper, let soak then rolled a piece of pork into it, dredged it with the corn starch, and fried it. After coating it with wing sauce, I was ecstatic! The coating started out crispy and the sauce clung to it wonderfully, and after it sat a bit it turned chewy, just like actual chicken skin!
A few changes will occur the next time I make them, and there WILL be a next time! Next time I'll bake the pork until nearly done, that way I dont have to fry them quite so long to ensure the pork being fully cooked. I'll do it ahead of time, let them cool, and dry and then coat and fry. Also, will make the cornstarch coating lighter so that it doesnt build up such a mucky mess in the bottom of the fryer leading to burnt oil. May try using potato starch for a few to see if that produces a superior chew. Potato starch makes a chewier coating on fish, and I don't enjoy that on fish, but maybe on hot wings it will shine!
Dinner Plate Two
Left to my own devices, I trend towards not eating much meat, nor fat. Yes, yes I know the previous bit of this post was about fried pork, but I only ate a few and was satisfied. A small steak usually lasts me 3 - 4 meals. When I don't eat meat, I dont miss it, and rarely think about meat, except for the love of my life, Bacon!
As the weather got became colder and darker, I began to wind down, until I was again marooned onto the island of our sofa again. Last weekend, TH took one look at me and decided I needed a shot of protein, and then stopped and said, "I don't think it's protein you need, I think its the fat, I'm buying you a fatty steak and you're going to eat some of that fat!" And so he did, and I ate some of both, and within a few hours I had energy again....Weird as hellz, yeah? I don't get it either, all I know is it works. The next day I ate it for breakfast and lunch and felt well enough to go for a 1 1/2 mile walk! Now I'm trying to make sure I consume a certain amount of protein and fat each day, and am feeling better even as the weather chills further.
Dinner Plate Three
While reading an milk allergy blog recently the author talked about being able to eat all sheep milk items without any physical issues. On my weekly trip to the natural grocery store, I scoured their chill chest for anything made from sheep milk.....looking, "no that's cow,......goat.......goat....raw milk...SHEEP!!! I bought a single container of sheep milk yogurt. Brought it home, and worried about eating it, but maned up and stirred the fruit up from the bottom and hesitantly took a bite, and it's YUMMY! It didnt hurt my tummy! Didn't make my ears ring, or stuff up my sinuses! A few days later found some sheep milk feta and came home and whipped up a greek salad, oh my gawd was it fabulously fabulous!