with Martin Boertz (Executive Chef and owner of Longrain), as the “celebrity” chef teaching a FREE class, of course we had to go!
In his, “A Journey into Asian style dining”, Martin showed us how to cook 2 dishes…
Mee Grob Crispy Noodle Salad with Prawns
and a Sour Orange Curry of Ocean Trout
Due to limited time, and because he was a proper chef, he was cooking both the dishes at the same time… but due to my wonderful editing, I’ve split them up for easy viewing/reading/salivating =)
Ingredients for the Sour Orange Curry (which is a variation of David Thompson’s recipe)
The brand of fish sauce Martin uses
The palm sugar which is a necessity in Thai cooking…
With the Crispy Noodle, what he did was blanch normal rice vermicelli in water (tap) for 20 mins until soft. Drained and spread out on absorbent paper to absorb any exess moisture. Separate the noodles into individual strands as much as possible.
Meanwhile, heat oil in a wok and stir-fry the mince pork and prawns (150g each) until cooked. Drain away any excess liquid and set aside. In a heavy-based pan, melt 150g shaved palm sugar with a little water to help break it down. Allow the sugar to caramelise, then add the yellow beans (mashed to a paste) and fish sauce and combine until the consistency of a thick sauce, remove mixture and fold through the cooked meat.
It should look like this =) (The background bottle behind the pan is the brand of the yellow beans)
Back to the noodles, lightly brush the noodles with a little eggwash (the whole egg), which will make the noodles turn a golden colour when cooked.
Heat the vegetable oil (160 degrees), until just smoking. Work with small bunches of noodles at a time, and drop them into the hot oil in batches. They should separate and cover the surface of the oil and look like a spider’s web (takes about 30 secs to cook). Remove with a Chinese spider, drain on absorbent paper (layer each spider noodle with absorbent paper)
To combine, place the pork in a mixing bowl and add mandarin juice (1 mandarin), toss in all the salad ingredients and lightly mix to bind all the ingredients together.
Break the crisp noodles and toss through the salad. Serve at once as the noodles will start to lose their crispiness if left to sit.
Garnish with thinly shredded omelet (Martin’s signature).
Voila! Served with a lime wedge on the side.. mouth watering!
Now for the curry! His assistant was really HOT by the way… and I digress =P
Soak red chillies (15 dried chillies) and shrimp (125g)separately in warm water for 20 minutes to rejuvenate them. Drain.
Blend garlic, eschalots and dried shrimp to a smoth paste (by pounding or blending). Add in tamarind paste and chillies and continue pounding with the mortar and pestle.
Bring stock to the boil, add lime leaves, and 1/2 a stalf of lemongrass and add 3 tablespoons of the paste.
Season with fish sauce, sugar and tamarind – it should taste sour, salty and sweet. Keep simmering and then put in the fish and vegetables (4 betel leaves shredded included)
Dish and serve with rice
Martin smiling at me taking pictures 0_0
It was a fantastic cooking class experience, and there is more to come =)