Friday, June 25, 2010

Barrier in the Snow

I keep tweaking this painting.  I think I am done.  Famous last words.
If you scroll down a few posts you will see 4 previous stages of this painting.
Oil on 1/8" Ampersand Hardbord Panel
18" x 36" ©2010

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Stir Fried Sichuan Green Beans

I recently made this recipe and it was VERY good.  It's from Cook's Illustrated.

2 TBSP soy sauce
1 TBSP dry sherry
1 tsp sugar
1/3 tsp cornstarch
1/4 tsp ground white pepper
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
1/4 tsp dry mustard
2 TBSP water
2 TBSP vegetable oil
1 pound green beans, ends trimmed, cut into 2-inch pieces
1/4 pound ground pork
3 medium garlic cloves, minced or pressed through garlic press (about 1 TBSP)
1 TBSP minced fresh ginger
3 scallions, white and light green parts sliced thin
1 tsp toasted sesame oil

1. In small bowl, stir together soy sauce, sherry , sugar, cornstarch, white pepper, pepper flakes mustard, and water until sugar dissolves; set aside.
2. Heat oil in 12-inch nonstick skillet over hight heat until just smoking.  Add beans and cook, stirring frequently, until crisp-tender and skins are shriveled and blackened in spots, 5 to 8 minutes (reduce heat to medium-high if beans darken too quickly).  Transfer beans to large plate.
3. Reduce heat to medium-high and add pork to now-empty skillet.  Cook, breaking pork into small pieces, until no pink remains, about 2 minutes.  Add garlic and ginger; cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, 15 to 20 seconds.  Stir sauce to recombine and return beans to pan with sauce.  Toss and cook until sauce is thickened, 5 to 10 seconds.  Remove pan from heat and stir in scallions and sesame oil. 

To make this dish vegetarian, substitute 4 ounces of shitake mushrooms, stemmed and minced, for the pork.  If using mushrooms, add a tsp of oil to the pan in step 3 before adding the mushrooms.