If you came over to visit me right now, you would swear as you stepped over the front door step that you had stepped from Australia into Thailand, such are the aromas of the Murphy household tonight and if you like Thai food like I do, you’d think man that smells so good!
Now if you were an avid reader of my blog (God help you), you would know that I have blogged similar meals to tonight’s meal here in the past, but I am blogging this meal anyway as it is one I am very happy with, and there is enough difference and enough new information to warrant it. That is partly due to a couple of new ingredients, well new brands of ingredients better put, that I have tried for the first time and also due to a new method I have used to cook the rice, both parts have made tonight’s meal one to remember.
I will start the same way as I did in the kitchen, with the rice. I cook rice using the absorption method as I find it is not only the easiest but proves every time to produce the best results, it also makes it easy to time the cooking of the meal, as I practically do it in two parts, where I cook the rice for 15 minutes, then let it rest untouched for 15 minutes. Tonight however I did vary the method by first quickly stir frying a teaspoon of grated ginger, a crushed clove of garlic and a teaspoon of finely chopped coriander root in a little oil heated in my wok. Once the ingredients were nice and fragrant I added a cup of rice and mixed it through stirring continuously for about a minute, the now fragrant rice grains were transferred to a large pot to which I added 1¾ cups of chicken stock. You then put the lid on the pot and onto a high heat until the liquid come to the boil, then turn the fire down as low as it will go and leave it for 15 timed minutes, as soon as the alarm goes off remove the pot from the heat, reset the timer for another 15 minutes and you get perfect rice, every time. I changed that last bit tonight however, as I had prepared 2 tablespoons of coriander leaves, 2 tablespoons of mint, a cup of finely chopped bean shoots and a small finely diced carrot which I added to the rice and then mixed in quickly with a fork, then replaced the lid to let it stand for the remaining time. It was amazing rice, I could have sat down and just ate that it was that good.
Once the rice was off the heat I got to work on cooking the fish which I had coated with a tablespoon of rice flour to which I had added a ¼ teaspoon each of ground cumin, ground coriander, ground cardamom, black pepper and salt, I then stir fried the fish in hot oil for a couple of minutes and then set aside on paper towel to drain any excess oil off. I added a little more oil to the wok and once it was hot stirred in a large tablespoon of red curry paste, the first of the new ingredient brands I was trying out, the brand is Hogan’s Chilli Sauces, it is a WA product, handmade and has no artificial colouring, flavours or preservatives. Until tonight I had always used and sworn by Valcom curry pastes, I don’t know if I could go back to that product after using Hogan’s paste. I cooked the paste for a few minutes, it became very fragrant and sort of starts to separate a little, I then added the coconut cream, tonight I am using Ayam Brand Premium Coconut Cream and again I don’t think I could use anything else in future, it made the most beautiful sauce, I added the cream off the top of the can a little at a time to the chilli paste until I had it all combined before adding the juice from the bottom of the can and letting it cook for a couple minutes. When the timer got down to two minutes to go, I added the fish back in and allowed it to heat over a low flame.
Wow, this has turned out to be a long blog, I think it has taken longer to write this than it did to cook the entire meal!!! But now it is written I am happy, cos this is one meal I definitely want to cook again!