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Beef rendang  

2014-08-19 18:13:44|  分类: Fusion Cooking |  标签: |举报 |字号 订阅

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Background: Beef rendang is one of the most delicious dishes that originates in the Malay achipelago. Actually, rendang refers to the simmering cooking process. Rendang beef, mutton or chicken is widely prepared during Hari Raya, wedding banquets and house gatherings.        

Challenges: There are three key challenges to the rendang process. The beef must retain sweetness, meaning it is not over-boiled. The final product must be essentially dry while retaining its moisture. The final product must not be broken into pieces because of the prolonged simmering process.

My brilliant idea: Break down the entire cooking process into five distinct sections.          

Ingredients: Fully-ripe banana (500 grams), honey dates (4 pieces), medlar or 枸句子 (twenty pieces), beef (1 kilogram), 3 teaspoon of sugar and about the same volume of gula Melaka.  

Procedure: (Broken down into five sections)

Section one: Boil banana, honey date and medlar.

Boiled the sweet base-stock in accordance with procedure, Banana, honey dates and medlar as a sweet-base stock.

Note 1: Scoop up four to five tablespoon for section four below. Note 2: You can boil one to two kilograms of banana and keep the boiled sweet soup in the refrigerator.

Beef rendang - 行天之道 - 论老子 

Section two: Remove the foul smell of beef

Step 1: Wash and cut the beef (shank/shin) into smaller pieces.  

Step 2: Add two bottle-capful of hua diao jiu.

Beef rendang - 行天之道 - 论老子

 Step 3: Turn on to low heat for one hour to completely remove the foul smell. Note: Leaving it for 7 to 8 hours produced almost 2/3 cooked beef. See picture below.  

Beef rendang - 行天之道 - 论老子 

Section three: Boil the beef with the sweet base stock

Step 1: To the beef prepared in section two add in the sweet base-stock described in section one.

Step 2: Boil the beef in the sweet base solution. Add water if necessary because during cooking process the water evaporates away.

Step 3: Use a chop stick to poke the tendon parts. If it can be pushed through easily, it means the tendon part has softened. Note: By now, the meaty beef part is a little too soft. Examine the picture below carefully. You can imagine the tendon part is soft and tender.

Beef rendang - 行天之道 - 论老子 

Remark 1: At this stage, the beef is fully cooked and is delicious with its natural taste (The above picture tells it all). Subsequent processes described in sections 4 and 5 merely add on the gravy to satisfy the tradition of making beef rendang or simmered beef.  

Beef rendang - 行天之道 - 论老子 

Remark 2: The soup (after filtering) shown above is exceptional clear and exceptionally delicious.

Section four: Prepare the gravy

Step 1: Prepared the mashed ginger. See procedure Mashed ginger (rendang). If you find mashing it is tedious, you can slice the ginger into very thin slices. See picture below.

Beef rendang - 行天之道 - 论老子

 Step 2: Add four or five tablespoons of the sweet base-stock from section one. Note: You may add in lemon grass solution ads this stage. See procedure Lemon grass solution

Step 3: Add in three/four tablespoon of pumpkin paste. See Pumpkin as a base stock for sauces.  Note 1: Pumpkin is mild in sweetness and its fine texture makes it a good ingredient to make just about any thick sauce.  

Beef rendang - 行天之道 - 论老子

Note 2: If you want it spicy, then add chililabu. See XO chili sauce – New creative fusion style

Step 4: Boil and then simmer into thick gravy.

 

Section five: Simmer the boiled beef in the mashed ginger gravy

Step 1: To the gravy prepared in section four above, pour in all the boiled beef in section three. Mix well.

Step 2: Use low heat to simmer the beef. Note: At this juncture, you may add in the lemon grass solution. See procedure Lemon grass solution.

Step 3: Stir it regularly (every 3 minutes) in order to prevent it from sticking to the bottom of the pan and eventually charred.

Step 4: Over stirring may break the beef into fine pieces.

Finished Product:

This is how it looks immediately after switching of the heat.

Beef rendang - 行天之道 - 论老子

This is how it looks after the pieces are picked up individually from the cooking pot.

Beef rendang - 行天之道 - 论老子

 Notes:

You can see that the tendon part is soft while the meaty beef part is tender and chewy.

Remarks:

1) The sweet base-stock enhances the sweetness of the meaty beef pieces. It is sweet (from a combination of a few sweet ingredients).

2) The tendon must be boiled to soft texture. However, by then the meaty part is already too soft.

3) The simmering process in section five harden the meaty beef part slightly to make it chewy than mere soft or tender.

4) Essentially, there is no need to simmer too long because the gravy is already well prepared.

Assessment:

1) The meaty beef part is sweet and chewy. Not too soft or tender.

2) The tendon part is soft and melts in your mouth.

3) The ginger gravy is basically sweet with a mildly ginger flavor. Note: Using older ginger produces a spicy taste.

Other variants:

1) Spicy beef rending: In section four and step 3, instead of adding pumpkin paste, add chili sauce. See XO chili sauce – New creative fusion style. Important note: Simmer for 1 to 2minutes is the best. Otherwise, the capsaicin in the chili will evaporate away.  

a) Gravy: Mashed ginger mixed with chili sauce.

Beef rendang - 行天之道 - 论老子

b) Finished product immediately after cooking.

Beef rendang - 行天之道 - 论老子

 c) Moist and not too dry beef rendang. Note: Too dry make it loses on the full flavor of the gravy.

Beef rendang - 行天之道 - 论老子
2) Add in roasted coconut shaving produces a strong sweet aroma. Yet to publish the picture.
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