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Vietnamese Shrimp in Caramel Sauce (Tom Kho Recipe) Recipe

This evening, I finished preparing dinner but realized everything was vegetarian. And if you think like me, vegetarian food is good but it's still lacking one thing. What's missing, you might ask? I looked at our dining table and I immediately knew what would make dinner complete: a dish of shrimp.

I had one pound of small shrimp begging to be cooked. So in less than 30 minutes, I whipped up some tôm kho, which is Vietnamese for shrimp in caramel sauce. The key is the amber-color sauce cooked with coconut soda (if you're lucky and have fresh coconut water, it would taste even better), onion, garlic and a hint of good quality nước mắm (fish sauce). Even though the most of my family are vegetarians, if cooked properly, the scent of this seafood dish doesn't bother them.


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Red Wine Braised Duck Leg Recipe Recipe

Whenever I prepare duck meat, I try to add a lot of spices to attenuate the strong gamey flavor. The spice mixture I used in this recipe is a combination of dried red chilies, fresh oregano, cumin seeds, a cinnamon stick, star anise and fried onion paste. A little red wine vinegar brings these flavors together and also helps to tenderize the meat.

I seared the duck legs and then braised them in a red wine reduction and chicken stock liquid. The duck cooked slowly for a couple of hours until it almost fell off the bone. Don't be intimated by the amount of chiles in the recipe because once cooked, the meat is going to be extra flavorful and not overly spicy. 

Stay tuned tomorrow to see what I did with the leftover duck meat and the spicy gravy. 


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Banh Mi Fish Taco Recipe Recipe

Banh Mi Fish Taco Recipe

05.01.13 by Jackie

These fish tacos are filled with grilled halibut, cilantro lime rice, salsa verde, diced avocado, shredded lettuce, crumbled queso fresco, pickled jalapeños, carrot and daikon (the Vietnamese flair in these tacos) and finally a dollop of Mexican sour cream. 

After completing my second cookbook, (shameless plug: don't forget to pre-order my Banh Mi cookbook), I've been professing my love for the Vietnamese sandwiches to whomever I meet on Twitter. Last weekend, I came across the most wonderful idea from a Texan food & wine festival through Chef David Bull from Austin: Banh Mi Tacos. In my second cookbook, I kept everything fairly traditional by sticking to straight, authentic recipes for the Vietnamese baguette, đồ chua (pickled carrots and daikon) and Vietnamese-style meat. But what I love most is the way we can get inspired from a certain type of cuisine and come up with new, creative dishes.  


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Tomatillo Risotto Appetizer Recipe Recipe

This is my take on a Mexican-inspired risotto flavored with tomatillo. I prepared salsa verde and added it to creamy risotto. I spooned the risotto onto blue tortilla chips and topped them with salsa verde and crumbled queso fresco as a reminder of the flavor.

I recently received a goodie box of a selection of Queso Del Valle and Karoun cheeses. I’m a huge fan of their products and with Cinco De Mayo just around the corner, I’ll be sharing recipes all week using the cheeses. I’m not a master of authentic Mexican cuisine, but I love Mexican ingredients and flavors and use them often in fusion dishes like this one. 

Mexican Risotto Recipe with Picture


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Beef Pot Roast Recipe Recipe

Beef Pot Roast Recipe

04.10.13 by Jackie

I don't know why I don't make this dish more often. It's inexpensive and so good. There are really only two meat eaters in our home, but with baby Aria growing up so fast, I felt she was old enough to try this dish. I used a fairly small cut of beef chuck, seared it to form a crust around the meat, then wrapped it papillote-style in aluminum foil, added beef stock and a few earthy vegetables around it and roasted it for a few hours.

The meat came out fork-tender; no knife was needed. And if you were curious to know if a 17-month-old could enjoy pot roast, well, Aria really liked it. She is not a big meat eater, but she does seem to have a taste for beef.

I served the pot roast with baked potatoes and creamed spinach. That's what I call pure comfort food! 

Note: Check out my beef pot pie recipe using the leftovers the next day.


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