Previously on the cucumber series, the idea of trying to get rid of leftover cucumbers resulted in cucumbers that were incorporated into a menu. Last week the fried egg Thai salad was featured here. Seemed like everyone loved the eggs! Well, what's not to love right? Especially melted egg yolks are good on anything (pretty much). I also wanted to thank my awesome friends in this blogosphere who have been a good support on what I've done -blog, articles on IE, Facebook page, and personal life. The friendship is growing and I very much appreciate to get to know you all. I'm blessed! You know who you are!
Cooking with the ingredients you have on-hand is more challenging than following a recipe and getting ingredients that you need. Have you watched the show "Chopped"on Food Network? With limited ingredients and time, they have to create their 3 course dishes and compete against one another. It's very interesting to see what they come up with. Thank God I had a lot of time to think of how to get rid of my cucumbers!
Today's dish is the second dish I made. It's ground pork mixed with roasted sesame seeds, chinese mushroom, glass noodle, cilantro, fish sauce, sugar, black pepper, and shichimi (Japanese 7 spice powder), and stuffed in cucumbers floating around in savory soup. It's a little of Chinese, Thai, and Japanese. For short, let's just say it's Asian - hahaha. The flavor is full from the pork mix and also from the soup. Cucumber adds a great flavor to it. Even though it's cooked, I still think it freshens the dish.
With the leftover pork mixture, I formed it in mini burger patties and deep fried them. They were so good by themselves! Too bad, I forgot to take a picture of them as I was too excited to try. What a bummer. You could serve those as a side dish or keep it in the fridge for the next meals.
I hope you enjoy piggy in a cucumber blanket!
Floating Pig in a Cucumber Blanket
Yield: 1 cucumber can generate 2 dishes (you can double up as the number of guests you have)
Pork Mixture -> with the leftover for deep fry. If you don't plan on deep frying, please cut the quantity by half
1 lb ground pork
1 bundle glass noodle
2 tbs dry Chinese mushroom
1 tsp black pepper
2 tbs fish sauce
1 tbs sugar
2 tsp roasted sesame seeds
1 tsp shichimi
1 English cucumber, quartered, peeled, and seeded
Soup: for 2
2 cups vegetable stock or any stock you have on hand
1/4 tsp black pepper
2 tsp mirin
1 tbs sake
salt to taste
- Steep Chinese mushroom and glass noodle in warm water in a seperate bowl for at least half hour to an hour. Make sure murshroom is rehydrated and glass noodle is soft.
- Mix ground pork with sesame seeds, mushroom, noodle, cilantro, fish sauce, sugar, pepper, shichimi. Use hands to mix the ingredients.
- Cut cucumber into 2" long, peel, and use small spoon and knife to remove seeds and meat. The ideal is to create a big hole and make cucumber not too thick (please see photo).
- Stuff pork mixture into prepared cucumbers as much as you can. Make sure it's stuffed tight and let it hang out top and end tips a bit.
- Heat up a medium sauce pan with vegetable stock or any stock you have on hands. When it boils, add mirin, sake, and black pepper. Bring it to boil.
- Add stuffed cucumber, and let it cook for 10-15 mins until the pork is cooked
- Divide into 2 bowls, and pour stock into just a quarter of the bowl. It's not a soup, so you don't need to add a lot to it.
- Garnish with cilantro. Enjoy!
|Shredded Chinese mushroom after rehydrated|
|Getting ready for a hot tub|