After spending an entire week in the Austrian Mountains and enjoying regional delicacies, I was severely craving some honest Asian food when I got back home. Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely love Austrian food- it definitely deserves much more praise than it’s getting- but there is only so much Mohntorte, Strudel, Knödel and Spätzle one can take before literally exploding out of one’s jeans.
So back in my humble kitchen I was convinced that the fragrant and spicy flavours of Asian cuisine would bring back some balance into my diet and I secretly hoped that the large amounts of chili would speed up my metabolism.
But aside from my oh-my-God-I-can-no-longer-fit-into-my-jeans hysteria, there was another reason for wanting to eat some Asian food…
Because it’s damn good.
And that is by far the most important thing!
Stir-fried vegetables with marinated King Oyster (Eryngii) Mushrooms
In terms of originality, I believe this dish deserves a culinary high five. The flavours are bold, the presentation is great, but most of all, these King Oyster mushrooms are to die for. This is by far one of the best vegetarian meals I have ever cooked, and coming out of my mouth, that certainly says a lot.
Ingredients (serves 4)
For the stir fry:
- 1 pak choi, cut into rough chunks
- 1 broccoli, cut into florets
- 200gr beans sprouts
- 1 red pepper, cut into slices
- 2 onions, cut into slices
- 3cm piece of fresh ginger, finely chopped
- 1 chili pepper, finely chopped
- 2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
- 6 tbsp light soy sauce
- 3 tbsp mirin
- 2 tbsp honey
- 1tbsp fish sauce
- Corn flour and water mixture (optional)
For the Eryngii mushrooms:
- 10-12 King Oyster mushrooms, cut in half
- 4 tbsp curry ketchup (sounds tacky, but it works!)
- 2 tbsp soy sauce
- ½ tsp chili powder
- 1 tsp Chinese five spice
- For the mushroom marinade, mix together the ketchup, spices and soy sauce. Spread the paste onto the mushrooms and grill them on a hot griddle pan for 1-2 minutes on each side. Transfer to an ovenproof dish and put in the oven at 180°C for 10 minutes until the mushrooms are tender and beautifully caramelized.
- Heat a tablespoon of vegetable oil in a large wok and add the broccoli. Stir-fry for three minutes and then add the pak choi. Stir-fry for another three minutes and then add the garlic, ginger, chili, red pepper and onion slices. Keep on stirring.
- Mix the soy sauce, honey, mirin and fish sauce together in a bowl and add to the vegetables. Taste and season with salt and pepper if necessary. If there isn’t enough liquid, add a little bit of water mixed with corn flour to give your vegetables a glossy look.
- Finally, stir in the bean sprouts.
- Serve hot with some steamed rice.
Seriously Good Salmon Curry
A One-Pot Wonder. That is the best way to describe this heartwarming curry. Miraculously rich in flavour, magically packed full of spices and wizardly soothing with heavenly salmon and potatoes.
Ingredients (serves 4)
- 4 salmon fillets, cut into large chunks
- 400gr potatoes (preferably those cute small ones), blached
- 1 yellow pepper, roughly chopped
- 1 red pepper, roughly chopped
- 200gr butternut, cut into 1cm chunks
- 400gr/ 1 can of tomatoes
- 250gr Greek yoghurt
- 2 cloves of garlic
- 1 onion,
- 3cm piece of ginger
- 2 tbsp tandoori powder
- 1 tbsp garam massala
- 1 tbsp turmeric
- Fresh coriander
- Mix together the ginger, onion and garlic in a food processor until you get a smooth paste. Stir this paste into the yoghurt, together with the tandoori powder.
- Put the salmon chunks into a large bowl and cover with the tandoori-spiced yoghurt. Put in the fridge and marinade for at least half an hour.
- Cut your cute potatoes in half. Heat a tablespoon of vegetable oil in a large pot and add the potatoes, butternut and peppers. Fry for a couple of minutes. Add the can of tomatoes, turmeric and garam massala. Let it simmer on a low heat until the vegetables are just tender. Season with salt and pepper.
- Add the salmon chunks to your curry together with the yummy yoghurt marinade. Stir carefully and let it simmer for another 5 to 10 minutes until your salmon is cooked.
- Finish with a generous sprinkling of fresh coriander.