Exotic Flavors

Hot Cheesy Stuffed Okra

Stuffing ingredients:

  • 95 g candle-nuts
  • 8 red chillies – if you want the herb paste to be hot, do not deseed the chillies
  • 5 dried chillies
  • 5 Shallots
  • 1 young ginger bud (bunga kantan)
  • 2 sprigs curry leaves
  • 3 kaffir lime leaves (daun limau purut)
  • 2 lemongrass bulbs
  • 3 cm young turmeric
  • Oil
  • Salt
  • Sugar
  • Grated cheese – Cheddar, Mozzarella or Emmenthal
  • Young tender okra (you can also use green bell pepper or tomatoes instead)

CHOP all the ingredients and blend in a food processor to a coarse paste. Heat up about 1/4 cup of oil and fry the paste till the aroma increases, then add in salt and sugar to taste. Add oil when paste appears to be drying out during frying.

Thoroughly mix equal amounts of herb paste with grated cheese. Slit the okra and fill it up with the mixture. Grill in the oven at 175 degrees C Just to melt the cheese or till cheese is slightly golden brown in color (10 to 15 minutes).

Tips: You can substitute half of the candle-nuts with dried shrimps. Leftover paste can be used as stuffing for grilled fish or try this variation: Fry a little chilli padi, curry leaves and shelled prawns with the paste in butter.

Country Style Bunny Chow

  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 50 g or 1 small red bell pepper, diced
  • 100 g eggplant, diced.
  • 50 g zucchini or green pepper, diced
  • 1 tbsp chopped young ginger
  • 2 tomatoes – deseeded and cut into small cubes
  • 1 cup butter beans
  • 10 button mushrooms, quatered
  • 50 g fresh oyster mushrooms, shredded
  • 1/2 cup chopped basil (or curry leaves)
  • 4 tbsp tomato paste
  • 2-3 tsp gar-am masala (or curry powder or samba powder)
  • Salt & pepper
  • 1 loaf bagel / oval loaf / small banquette buns
  • Butter or margarine

SAUTE the onion, ginger and curry leaf with 2 tbsp oil. Add in the zucchini, eggplant and button mushrooms. Stir-fry to soften.

Add in the bell pepper, oyster mushrooms, tomatoes and tomato paste together with the garam masala spices. Season with salt and pepper.

Remove the soft inside of the bread leaving a thick crust. Lightly butter the inside and leave it in the oven to warm before spooning the vegetable stew in. Delicious when served with a salad – it'll be a complete meal then.

* Home-made spices mainly used for South Indian food

Tips: Change the flavor by using olive, sun-dried tomatoes, basil and olive oil for frying. And for non-vegetarian, use cubed tenderloin, chicken breast and even a variety of seafood.

Seafood Bean-curd Parcel

  • Thin bean-curd skin – soak to soften in warm water
  • 300 g shrimps, minced
  • 25 g crab-meat
  • 25 g scallops, chopped
  • 2 g black sea moss (fatty soy), soaked
  • 1 stalk spring Onion, chopped
  • 2-3 water chestnuts, chopped
  • 2 tbsp chopped carrots
  • 1 red chilli, chopped
  • 3 tsp sesame oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 4 tsp cornstarch
  • 15-20 spring onion leaves – blanched in hot water to soften
  • Oil for deep frying

MIX the seafood with the rest of the filling ingredients and season to taste. Cut the bean-curd skin into squares approximately 4 "x 4" wide. (You'll need 15 to 20 square pieces.) Spoon the paste onto the wrap and tie with spring onion. Trim the excess bean-curd skin.

Heat up about 4 cups of oil and fry the parcels till golden brown. Serve with chilli sauce or oyster sauce.

Tips: Simmer the seafood parcels in a fish or ikan bills stock and serve with greens eg baby mustard, lettuce, chrysanthemum leaves (thong hoe soy) and soft Beauregard. Makes a lovely dish for the coming Chinese New Year.

Source by Abu Murad