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When my mother came up with the name of her first cookbook the term "All-American" only seemed fit. After all, she was 1st generation Chinese married to an American, Irish, Norwegian man living in Nebraska where traditional Chinese ingredients were not made readily available. It isn't until now that I truly understand the meaning of the All-American... (read more)

Posts Tagged ‘Hors D’oeuvres’

27

Sep

2011

Vegetable Egg Rolls

Vegetarian egg rolls were one of my most popular appetizers in my two California restaurants. Don’t forget to serve them with my tasty sweet and sour dipping sauce.

veg-egg-roll-2

1 package egg roll wrappers (20 pieces) – found in the produce section of most supermarkets.
1 egg, beaten (to seal the egg rolls)
3 cups canola or vegetable oil for deep-frying

Filling:
1 pound cabbage (one very small or half of a medium size)
2 large celery stalks
1 large carrot
1 small yellow onion (6 oz.)
½ red bell pepper (4 oz.)
1 tablespoon canola or vegetable oil (for cooking in a non-stick wok or fry pan)
1 tablespoon soy sauce (Kikkoman brand)
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon pure sesame oil

Preparation:
Wash and core the cabbage. Cut cabbage in half, then into quarters, and again into 8 wedges. Cut crosswise, shredding the cabbage into ¼-inch thin strips. Cut celery crosswise into ¼-inch thin pieces. Slice carrot diagonally into ¼-inch thin pieces then cut into thin strips. Cut onion along the grain in half and then into quarters. Cut crosswise into ¼-inch thin slices. Cut red bell pepper into thin 1-inch long strips.

Vegetable Egg Roll

To Cook:
Heat oil in a non-stick wok or a large fry pan over medium high heat. When the oil is hot, add cabbage, celery, carrots and onions. Cook and stir for about 4 minutes. Add soy sauce, salt, sugar and sesame oil. Stir-fry until the vegetables are tender, approximately 2 to 3 more minutes. Add red bell peppers and mix well. Remove from heat. Drain the cooked vegetables through a colander. Stir until all liquid is drained. Cool to room temperature. Note: You may make the filling ahead of time and refrigerate until ready to assemble.

To Assemble:
Place ½ cup of vegetable filling diagonally across the center of an egg roll wrapper. Lift one lower corner flap over the filling and tuck the point of the corner under the filling. Bring the corners of each side over the top of the enclosed filling. Lightly brush the remaining triangle with the beaten egg and then roll into a neatly sealed egg roll.

To Fry:
Heat 3 cups of oil in wok or a deep fryer over medium heat. When the oil is hot, drop one egg roll at a time into the hot oil. Deep-fry about 5 egg rolls at one time for 3 to 4 minutes until light golden brown. Transfer the egg rolls onto paper towels and let the oil drain off while deep-frying the remaining egg rolls. Serve the egg rolls warm with sweet and sour sauce for dipping.

Makes 20 egg rolls
Filing preparation and assembly: 50 minutes
Cooking the filling: 7 minutes
Deep frying time: 12 to 16 minutes


27

Jan

2010

Steamed Shao Mai

Last week we welcomed our newest addition, Chase Evan Fluhr to the All-American Chinese family! Life has been busy but Grandma Lucy has been here helping with the kids and cooking! She prepared one of our all time favorite dim sum dishes, steamed open faced dumplings otherwise known as Shao Mai. Shao Mai are typically served in Cantonese style Chinese restaurants, but are also easy enough to prepare at home and wow a crowd.

½ package wonton wrappers (Found in the produce section of most supermarkets)
4 to 6 cups water (Depending on the size of the steamer pot)
Cabbage or lettuce leaves for steaming

Preparation for the Filling:
½ pound lean ground pork
½ pound medium size raw shrimp, peeled, deveined
4 medium size shiitake dried black mushrooms, soaked in warm water for 10 minutes or longer until soft
½ can sliced water chestnuts (2.5 oz. drained)
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon soy sauce (Kikkoman brand)
1 tablespoon rice wine or cooking sherry wine
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon pure sesame oil

Chop the shrimp into very small pieces with a heavy knife. Drain the mushroom water, remove the stems if any and finely chop. Finely chop the water chestnuts. In a bowl, combine the ground pork with chopped shrimp, mushrooms, water chestnuts, cornstarch, soy sauce, rice wine, salt, sugar and sesame oil. Mix together thoroughly.

To Assemble:
Using kitchen shears, trim the four corners of a few wrappers at a time into 3 ¼ inch rounds. Place a round wonton wrapper onto the palm of your hand. Place 1 full tablespoon of filling in center of wrapper. With your other hand, gather the sides of the dough around the filling, letting the dough pleat naturally. Squeeze the middle gently to make sure the dough fits firmly against the filling and tap the dumpling’s bottom to flatten so it can stand upright.

To Cook:
When all the Shao Mai are made, place them on the rack in the steamer (for the best results, place green lettuce leaves or cabbage leaves on the rack as a bed for the Shao Mai. It makes for easy removal of the Shao Mai from the rack when done). Be sure to leave ½ to 1 inch spaces in between each Shao Mai. Bring the water to a boil over high heat, cover the steamer and steam the Shao Mai for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and serve warm.

If the pot is not big enough to steam all at once, you can steam half of the Shao Mai at a time.

Sauce for Dipping:
In a small bowl, mix 2 tablespoons soy sauce, 3 tablespoons white vinegar and 1 teaspoon red hot chili oil together for dipping the Shao Mai.

Makes 26 Shao Mai
Preparation time: 30 to 40 minutes (depends how fast you can assembling the Shao Mai)
Cooking time: 10 minutes

Tip: You can make the Shao Mai ahead of time and freeze. Steam for an extra 2 to 3 minutes more when steaming the frozen Shao Mai.


20

Oct

2009

Tofu Stuffed with Shrimp

A very tasty tofu dish. Be sure to spoon plenty of the sauce over tofu before eating!


1 package firm tofu (16 oz.)
½ pound small or medium size raw shrimp
1 scallion, including the green top
1 tablespoon rice or cooking sherry wine
1 teaspoon cornstarch
½ teaspoon salt
Pinch of white pepper
2 tablespoons canola or vegetable oil (for cooking in a non-stick wok or a fry pan)

Sauce:
½ can chicken broth (about 1 cup)
2 tablespoons oyster sauce*
1 teaspoon sesame oil
½ teaspoon sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch dissolved in ¼ cup water

Preparation:
Rinse the tofu block with cold water and pat dry with paper towels. Cut the tofu in half lengthwise. Then cut the tofu crosswise into 20 (¼ inch thick) pieces. Peel, de-vein and rinse the shrimp. Cut the shrimp into very small pieces. Wash and trim the green onion, finely chop. Save 1 tablespoon of green onions for garnish. In a small bowl, combine the shrimp, onions, wine, cornstarch, salt and white pepper. Mix the ingredients together thoroughly. Carefully place 1 full tablespoon of the shrimp mixture between two pieces of tofu. Makes 10 tofu sandwiches. In a small bowl, dissolve 2 tablespoons cornstarch with ¼ cup water and set aside.

To Cook:
Heat oil in a non-stick 10″ frying pan over medium-high heat. When the oil is hot, place the 10 pieces of stuffed tofu into pan. Pan-fry one side of the stuffed tofu for approximately 5 minutes until lightly golden brown. Carefully turn each stuffed tofu sandwich over, cover the pan with a lid and pan-fry for another 5 minutes. Remove the cooked tofu and place onto a serving plate.

In a small pot, heat the chicken broth with oyster sauce, sesame oil and sugar over medium heat and bring to a boil. Stir the dissolved cornstarch again and add to pot. Constantly stir and cook until the sauce thickens and becomes clear. Pour sauce evenly over the stuffed tofu. Sprinkle with remaining chopped green onions for garnish. Serve hot.

Makes 10 stuffed tofu
Preparation time: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 12 minutes

* Oyster sauce by the bottle is sold in the Asian section of the most supermarkets. After opening, it can stored for several months in the refrigerator.


19

Dec

2008

Baked Stuffed Mushrooms

The holidays are upon us and it has been such a busy time (hence the lack of posts)! Our traditional family Christmas Eve dinner planning is in full swing by Grandma Lucy and we wanted to share a light and healthy hors d’oeuvre that your family may also enjoy.

1 pound fresh mushrooms, (1.5 to 2 inch diameter / about 20 pieces)
½ pound small or medium size raw shrimp
1/2 can sliced water chestnuts (2.5 oz. drained & approx. ¼ cup after finely chopped)
1 oz. fresh cilantro (approx. ¼ cup after finely chopped)
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon rice wine or cooking sherry wine
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pure sesame oil
Canola oil or Pam cooking spray

Preparation:
Wash mushrooms thoroughly and carefully remove the stems. Finely chop the stems. Peel and devein the shrimp, rinse and pat dry with paper towels. Use a heavy knife to finely chop the shrimp. Finely chop the water chestnuts. Wash and trim the cilantro, finely chop.  In a bowl, combine the chopped shrimp with the mushroom stems, water chestnuts, cilantro, cornstarch, rice wine, salt and sesame oil. Mix together thoroughly. Fill each mushroom cap with 1 tablespoon of the shrimp mixture. Pack tightly so that top of filling is rounded like a miniature cupcake. You should be able to use up all the mixture.

To Cook:
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Arrange stuffed mushrooms into a 9×12 baking dish. (There will be some liquid from the mushrooms while baking.)
Spray a little cooking spray on top of the stuffed mushrooms. Bake the stuffed mushrooms uncovered for 18 to 20 minutes. Remove the baked mushrooms onto a serving plate and serve it warm.

Makes about 20 mushroom caps
Preparation time: 20 to 25 minutes
Cooking time: 18 to 20 minutes


4

Oct

2008

Sweet and Sour Turkey Meatballs

A popular party dish made just a bit more healthy with the ground turkey meat. Although it’s the Chinese sweet and sour sauce that really makes it!

1 package ground turkey (1-1/4 pounds)
1/2 cup plain bread crumbs (Progresso brand)
1 teaspoon finely grated fresh ginger root
1 scallion, including the green top
1 egg
2 tablespoons soy sauce (Kikkoman brand)
1 teaspoon pure sesame oil
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon sugar
Canola oil or Pam cooking spray

Sweet and Sour Sauce:
½ cup water
¼ cup sugar
¼ cup ketchup
¼ cup white vinegar
1 tablespoon cornstarch dissolved in 2 tablespoons of water

Preparation:
Peel and finely grate the fresh ginger root. Wash and trim the green onion, finely chop.  In a large bowl, combine the ground turkey with bread crumbs, ginger root, green onions, egg, soy sauce, sesame oil, salt and sugar. Mix together thoroughly.  In a small bowl, dissolve 1 tablespoon cornstarch with 2 tablespoons of water together and set aside.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Scoop 1 tablespoon of the turkey mixture, use palm of hands roll into a 1 inch round meatball. For easy clean up, spray cooking spray onto a large cookie sheet before placing meatballs.

To Cook:
Bake the meatballs for 15 minutes.  For the sauce:  Combine  water, sugar, ketchup and white vinegar in a medium sized pot.  Stir over medium heat and bring to a boil. Add dissolved cornstarch, stir for a few seconds until the sauce has thickened and becomes clear. Turn off heat.  When the meatballs are done, add the baked meatballs to the pot and coat well with sauce. Note: The sauce will only lightly coat the meatballs for flavor. Serve warm.

Makes about 40 meatballs
Preparation time: 20 minutes
Baking and cooking time: 18 minutes


29

Aug

2008

Easy Chinese Steamed Pork Buns

A few years back my mother stumbled upon a competition hosted by Pillsbury. I initially balked at the idea of making things from their branded biscuits. Afterall, we grew up eating fresh, homemade, healthy foods. We were the house that never, ever had sugared cereal! So when my mom stocked up on their buttery Grands! biscuits, I was secretly happy but wondered if she was loosing it? From taco shells to sticky buns, these delicious little biscuits can do anything. There’s even a tasty reduced fat version!


Without further adieu, here’s Lucy’s recipe with the store bought biscuit dough and all. They are truly delicious and make amazing hors d’oeuvres !

2 packages (10 per package) refrigerated buttermilk biscuits
2 tablespoons flour (for dusting the biscuits)
Canola oil or Pam cooking spray
½ cup water

Filling:
½ pound lean ground pork
2 scallions, including the green top
1 tablespoon soy sauce (Kikkoman brand)
2 teaspoons cornstarch
2 teaspoons pure sesame oil
1 teaspoon finely grated fresh ginger root
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon sugar

Preparation:
Wash and trim the green onions, finely chop. Peel and finely grate the ginger root.  In a bowl, combine the ground pork with chopped onions, grated ginger root, soy sauce, cornstarch, sesame oil, salt and sugar. Mix together thoroughly and set aside.

On a cutting board, separate biscuits. Flatten each with fingertips and lightly dust with flour. Use a rolling pin to roll each biscuit into a 3-½ inch round shape, approximately 1/8-inch thick.

Place the flattened biscuit dough onto the palm of your hand. Place 1 tablespoon of pork filling in the center of the biscuit and with your other hand, gather the sides of the biscuit dough around the filling, letting the biscuit dough pleat naturally. Pinch the top of the dough to seal. Tap the little biscuit bun to flatten its bottom so it stands upright. Repeat to make all the buns.

To Cook:
Spray cooking oil in a 10-inch non-stick frying pan over medium-low heat. Place 10 biscuit buns in the pan, leaving 1/2 inch space between each bun. Add half (¼ cup) of the water to the pan and cover. Cook for 10 to 12 minutes, until the water is absorbed and the bottom of the buns are lightly browned. The buns size will double.

Transfer the cooked pork buns onto a plate or lined breadbasket. Cover with tinfoil to keep them warm. Repeat to cook another 10 buns.

Makes 20 pork buns
Preparation time: 30 minutes
Cooking time: 20 to 24 minutes

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