Thai flavoured savoury chestnut flour pancakes

Once you start experimenting with different flavours in pancake batter there’s no turning back.   We had some savoury pancakes for a lazy weekend breakfast and tried something different with some Thai 7 spice mix and some fresh herbs.   The pancakes tasted great on their own and with some sweet chilli sauce.

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What do I need to make it?

  • 1 cup chestnut flour
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp baking powders
  • 1 1/2 tsp Thai 7 spice powder (we found this under the Schwartz brand)
  • 1 clove of garlic minced
  • 1 Thai red chillie chopped
  • 2 sprigs of spring onion chopped
  • Handful fresh coriander and basil chopped
  • Salt to taste

How many will I make?

6-8 depending on size

How do I make it?

Place the chestnut flour, baking powder, milk and egg in a mixing bowl.  Whisk the ingredient till you get a medium consistency batter.  Add the remaining ingredients and give it a good stir.   Heat a frying pan and use a knob of butter to ensure pancake doesn’t stick to the pan.   Pour in a ladle of batter and cook on both sides till done.   Serve on it own or with sweet chilli sauce.

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Coconut fish soup revisited

Having previously discovered the simplicity of preparing a fish soup infused with Thai flavours, tonight was an opportunity to experiment a bit further with different ingredients.   Net result was a wholesome bowl of coconut fish soup with bags of flavour.  The ingredients are predominantly Indian by nature but the soup has more of a Pan Asian feel to it because of the coconut milk and the fresh sambal.  The soup uses ‘kokum’ to provide a bit of tang to the dish – this is typically found in India and commonly used in west coastal fish dishes.   If kokum is not available in your local Indian grocer then feel free to substitute it with some tamarind pulp.

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What do I need to make it?

  • 1 large fillet of cod cut in half
  • 1 medium onion sliced
  • 2 green chillies chopped
  • 1 inch piece ginger cut in julienne
  • 4 medium sized mushrooms sliced
  • 75 gm of baby leaf spinach
  • 400ml tinned coconut milk
  • 1/2 tsp white pepper
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • 3 kokum pieces chopped
  • 1/2 tsp caraway seeds
  • Handful fresh curry leaves
  • Small handful of fresh coriander to garnish
  • Salt to taste

For the sambal

  • 1 cup of shredded coconut roasted till light brown
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 1 small shallot (we used small Indian onions)
  • 4-5 small dried red chillies (adjust to taste)
  • 1/2 tsp caraway seeds
  • 1/2 tsp sugar
  • Salt to taste

Pound all the ingredients (except the coconut) to a paste in a pestle and mortar.   Once the roasted coconut has cooled, mix it with the paste and it is ready to serve.

How much will I make?

2 large bowls of soup

How do I make it?

Heat a pan, add coconut oil followed by the caraway seeds, ginger and curry leaves.   Stir for a minute before adding the sliced onions, green chillies and cook for a couple of minutes.   Pour in the coconut milk with 400 ml of water and season with salt and white pepper.   Reduce the heat to low and cook for ten minutes before poaching the cod fillets in the stock till cooked through.   Remove the fillets and add the mushrooms and spinach to the stock – increase heat and cook for five minutes.   To assemble the dish, place the cod fillets in the middle of the bowl and pour stock with vegetables over it.   Garnish with a tablespoon of the sambal and some fresh coriander.  Enjoy.

Thai flavoured casserole

Having caught the casserole bug a couple of weeks ago we have been busy experimenting with different ethnic flavours (posted our take on Moroccan and Creole/Mexican casseroles in earlier blogs, links below).   Tonight we tried putting together Thai ingredients to create a casserole which was not as thick as previous attempts as there are no starchy ingredients but flavour and taste wise was delicious.   You need some standard Thai ingredients to ensure you maximize the flavour.

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What do I need to make it?

  • 500 gms boneless chicken thighs (6-8 pieces)
  • 1 large white onion sliced
  • 1 red pepper cut into cubes
  • 1 yellow pepper cut into cubes
  • 2 green chillies roughly chopped
  • 5-6 garlic pods
  • 1 carrot roughly chopped
  • 6-8 button mushrooms halved
  • 5-6 baby corn cut into bite size pieces
  • Handful of green beans chopped into 1 inch pieces
  • 200  gms sliced bamboo shoots (small can drained)
  • 6-8 snow peas/mange tout
  • 1 stick of lemon grass bruised
  • 1 piece of galangal bruised
  • 1/2 tsp crush dried birds eye chilli
  • 2 chicken stock cubes
  • 2 tsp Sriracha chilli paste
  • 400 ml coconut milk
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil
  • Few sprigs of fresh coriander chopped to garnish
  • Salt and pepper to taste

How much will I make?

Serves 4

How do I make it?

First marinade the chicken thighs with the Sriracha paste and a bit of salt – set aside for a few hours.   Heat your oven proof casserole dish and add 1 tbsp of coconut oil – sear the chicken pieces on both sides and remove.   Add another tablespoon of coconut oil and stir the crushed birds eye chilli for 30 seconds before adding green chilli, garlic, lemon grass, galangal and kafir lime leaves and stirring for another 30 seconds.  Add the onion and  peppers and stir for a couple of minutes before adding the remaining vegetables, stock cubes, coconut milk, chicken and about 200 ml of water.  Sprinkle a little salt and black pepper to taste and place the casserole in a pre-heated oven at 200 degree Centigrade for an hour or till the chicken is cooked through.   Garnish with fresh coriander and serve on its own or with a bowl of Jasmine rice.

Coconut fish soup with fresh sambal

We tried a dish tonight inspired by Thai flavours and were pleasantly surprised with the outcome.  It was dead simple to make and turned out to be a heartening meal especially on a wet, cold and rainy night as tonight.

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What do I need to make it?

  • 1 large fillet of cod cut in half
  • 1 medium onion sliced
  • 1 red chillli chopped
  • 3 kafir lime leaves (optional)
  • 1 stick of lemon grass bruised
  • 1 inch piece of galangal sliced thinly (use a mandolin slicer)
  • 1/2 carrot sliced thinly (as above)
  • 2 baby corns sliced thinly (as above)
  • 2 medium sized mushrooms sliced
  • 400ml tinned coconut milk
  • 1/2 tsp white pepper
  • 1 chicken stock cube
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • Small handful of fresh coriander to garnish
  • Salt to taste

For the sambal

  • 1 cup of shredded coconut roasted till light brown
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 1 small shallot (we used small Indian onions)
  • 1 red chilli
  • 1/2 tsp palm sugar
  • Salt to taste

Pound all the ingredients (except the coconut) to a paste in a pestle and mortar.   Once the roasted coconut has cooled, mix it with the paste and it is ready to serve.

How much will I make?

2 large bowls of soup

How do I make it?

Heat a pan, add coconut oil followed by the sliced onions and cook for a couple of minutes.   Pour in the coconut milk and 400 ml of water.  Add the kafir lime leaves, galangal, red chilli, lemon grass, white pepper and stock cube and bring to a gentle boil,  Reduce the heat to low and poach the cod fillets till they cook through.   Remove the fillets and add the vegetables to the stock – increase heat and cook for five minutes.   To assemble the dish, place the cod fillets in the middle of the bowl and pour stock with vegetables over it.   Garnish with a tablespoon of the sambal and some fresh coriander.  Enjoy.