Tag Archives: cornstarch

Calamari That’s Spicy (But Not Really)

Another Thai adventure; here’s the ingredients:

  • Cleaned Squid, 2 lbs
  • Cucumber
  • Tomato
  • Garlic, 10 cloves, minced
  • Cornstarch, 2 tablespoons
  • White pepper, 1/2 teaspoon
  • Sugar, 2 tablespoons
  • Soy sauce, 2 tablespoons
  • Fish sauce, 4 tablespoons
  • White wine, 4 tablespoons

The ingredients.

This was my first time cooking with squid, and it was fun. The first step is to create the marinade, by mixing all of the ingredients with the exception of the garnishes (cucumber and tomato) and the squid. When you do, it looks like this:


The marinade.

The squid itself requires a bit more work. This is what a mantle looks like:


The mantle.

After it’s been washed and whatnot, you should do a bunch of scoring – hatch marks diagonally in both directions. This will help soften the squid as it cooks, and allow the flavors of the marinade to more deeply penetrate and infuse the flesh.


The mantle, scored.

Then slice it up into strips or rings or whatever you like. You may also have some tentacle bits, as we did. Again, you’ll wash these.



Then add everything into the marinade and let it steep for at least 10 minutes.



Then stir-fry on the stove, in some oil (I separated the squid from the marinade because it was, after all, just a marinade).



When the squid is firm and curled, you’ll know you’re done cooking.


Curly bits.

Then garnish and you’re done. Yum!



Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Beef with Broccoli

This is another dish from the Thai cookbook I’m working through. The ingredients:

  • Beef, 1 pound, thinly sliced
  • Broccoli, 2 pounds, cut into bite-sized chunks
  • Straw mushrooms, 1 can
  • Oyster sauce, 6 tablespoons
  • Oil

And for the marinade, the ingredients are:

  • Eggs, 2
  • Garlic, 8 cloves, minced
  • Sugar, 4 tablespoons
  • Fish sauce, 4 tablespoons
  • Cornstarch, 2 tablespoons
  • Rice wine, 4 tablespoons
  • Sesame oil, 2 teaspoons
  • White pepper, ground, 1 teaspoon

The ingredients.

Like me, you may have some trouble locating straw mushrooms. I didn’t even know there was such a thing before I made this recipe. But there is. Believe me. They look like this:


The mushrooms in question. In a can.

I found this can at my local Giant supermarket, in the ethnic foods aisle. But undoubtedly some groceries won’t carry them. And to be honest, it wouldn’t be the worst thing in the world if you substituted some other kind of mushroom.

The first step is to combine all the marinade ingredients, like so:


The marinade, pre-mix.

Mix them all together, like so:


The marinade, post-mix.

But what’s the use of a marinade if you’re not marinading anything? This is where the beef comes in. Cut it into thin slices, like so:


The beef, pre-marinade.

And add it all to the marinade, like so:


The beef, in marinade.

Let it marinade for at least five minutes. Meanwhile, you can cut up your broccoli, in pieces as big as you may prefer:


The broccoli, pre-beef.

When the marinade is done, heat the oil in a large wok and saute the beef until it’s done, or close to it. Then add the broccoli and the other ingredients and cook until the veggies have reached your desired level of tenderness.


The broccoli, with beef.


Everything together!

Eat and enjoy!

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment