Jan Can Cook

A collection of my recipes and ideas for a simple meal at home.

Friday, September 22, 2006

Burmese Chicken Noodle

Thick mee hoon (rice) noodles
1 lb minced chicken - marinate in fish sauce and sugar.
Bean sprouts
1 large onion - finely chopped.
Red chili powder
Burmese bean powder
Crushed red pepper flakes
Fish sauce
Tamarind (assam)

Dissolve a chunk of tamarind in some hot water and let sit.
Boil the noodles and bean sprouts until cooked. Set aside.

Heat 2 Tb of vegetable oil, saute the onions until soft. Add red chili powder (2 Tb). Mix well. Add the minced chicken. Cook through. Remove from heat.

Now you are ready to eat. This is traditionally eaten in DIY style. You put all the ingredients on the table, and mix everything onto your bowl or plate.

First put the cooked noodles. Then add some of the cooked chicken. Add beansprouts, 1tsp of bean powder, 1tsp of crushed red pepper, a drizzle of fish sauce, 1tsp of tamarind water, and chopped coriander.

The beauty of this dish is you can adjust the flavors to your personal taste. Not spicy enough? add some more crushed red pepper. not sour enough? add some more tamarind. not wet enough? add some more fish sauce.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Spicy Beef and Tomato Stew (?)

I got this one from my Burmese roommate, who learned it from her Mom. She's calls it curry, but there's no curry in it!

1 lb - beef chunks (for stew)
1 TB soysauce for beef marinade
1 medium-sized tomato - finely chopped
1 medium-sized red onion - finely chopped
2 cloves garlic - finely chopped
2 TB - red chilli powder

Marinate the beef chunks in soy sauce and sugar about 30 minutes before cooking.

Heat a generous amount (2 TB) of oil in a medium-sized pot. Saute the onions and garlic until tender (about 10 minutes over medium heat). Add the red chilli powder and mix well. Add the tomatoes and let cook about 15 minutes until onions, garlic, and tomatoes are well blended together. Add the beef and brown chunks all sides.

Add enough water to the pot to almost cover the meat, bring to a boil, cover, and turn the heat to low. Let simmer about 1 hour until beef tender.

If you prefer an extra spicy version, add a chili padi (sliced open) 5 minutes before removing from stove.

If you prefer a thicker stew, add corn starch and mix well 3 minutes before removing from stove.

Serve over hot white rice.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Chicken Parmesan Meatballs

1 lb minced/ground chicken
1 egg
1/2 cup bread crumbs
1/2 cup parmesan
1 Tb dried oregano
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper

Mix all the ingredients in a bowl using your hands. Put it in the fridge for 30 minutes. Take out of the fridge and form balls, set aside on a floured surface like a cutting board.

Heat generous amount of oil in frying pan, and pan fry the balls on all sides so the outsides are nicely browned. Transfer into a saucepan of marinara sauce and let simmer in sauce, covered, until the meatballs are cooked through.

Serve with your favorite pasta.

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Chinese Scrambled Egg & Tomato

1 egg, beaten, seasoned with 1 tsp salt
1 medium tomato - cut into big chunks (halve it, cut the half into 4 wedges, and halve the wedges)

Heat 1 tablespoon vegetable oil over medium heat. Fry the egg like a flat omelette (don't scramble it up in the pan) until lightly golden brown on both sides. Remove from pan and cut into large bitesize pieces. Return the pan to the stove, and add another tablespoon of vegetable oil. Add the tomatoes and allow to saute for about a minute. Add 1/4 cup hot water and bring it to a boil. The skin should come off the tomatoes and curl up. Add a 1 tsp of salt. Return the fried egg into the pan. Stir together. Remove from heat and serve.

Monday, June 26, 2006

Egg Fried Rice

This is one of the first things my mom taught me how to make. Just so you know, fried rice, to Chinese people, is like something you throw together when you have leftover cooked rice. Like, people like my parents, they would never in their life walk into a restaurant and order fried rice, or go out of their way to make it for dinner. But that doesn't mean you can just throw everything together in a wok and voila. There's still an art to it.

4 cups cooked leftover rice
1 egg - beaten & seasoned with salt
1 large green (spring) onion - chopped
2 tablespoon soy sauce
2 tablespoon vegetable oil
(Serves 1)

In a large wok, heat 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil. Cook the egg like a flat omelette (don't scramble it) until lightly golden brown on both sides. Remove from pan, cut up into bitesize pieces, and set aside. I think the egg just takes better this way, rather than scrambling it all up.

With the wok still hot and over medium heat, add the other tablespoon of vegetable oil. When hot, toss in the chopped green onions. Let it cook for maybe 30 seconds, then dump in the 4 cups of cooked leftover rice on top of. Just let the rice sit there for a few minutes, pressing down with your spatula so the grains at the bottom will really sizzle. (This makes some of the rice more crispy, giving texture to the whole thing.) Drizzle the soy sauce over the rice, and then mix with your spatula.

Kimchi egg fried rice
Fry kimchi with green onions. This variation adds a little spice.

Another variation is to add any leftover meat or veggies. Throw them in after you add soy sauce, and cook together.

Sunday, June 25, 2006


1 can (400g) garbanzo beans (chickpeas)
1/4 cup tahini sauce (sesame seed paste) - available at most grocery stores
1/4 water
1/4 cup olive oil
juice of 1/2 a large lemon
2 cloves of garlic - roughly chopped
salt - to taste

2 sprigs of parsley - chopped

Add all of the ingredients to the blender, and blend until smooth. If you want a spicier version, add a chopped red chili pepper or a teaspoon of paprika before you blend.
Garnish with a sprinkle of paprika in the center, and chopped parsley.

Serve with warm pita bread and cucumber slices.