Baked Summer Ratatouille
One of the first local recipes we made for the Oregon Food Bank's Eat Local Challenge!
I have to say, this week seems like it’s flying by. It’s been a really productive week at work, my July calendar is filling up nicely with fun events like the PDX Food Swap and WOOHOO, the last piece of our bathroom comes in tomorrow at 9 a.m.: our cabinet doors. Then we just have to call for an inspection and the whole thing is done for real. I can’t wait to post photos!
For about a week, the shower was done but the glass door and window weren’t installed. We basically had an open air shower. Which was kind of cool, but in the end I think I’m glad we got the door in. Except now that there is actually a door, I keep looking at it out of the corner of my eye, and wondering why the tiles look so shiny. Let’s cross our fingers that I don’t smack into it.
We also had a fun night at the USMNT game in Portland at Jeld-Wen last night. What an amazing crowd! I hope we’ve convinced them to come back frequently and often. It was a late, fun night – we haven’t done a ton of cooking this week – so I’m pulling out another recipe I shot a while ago and haven’t yet blogged.
Potstickers were always a little bit of a mystery to me until a few weeks ago. They are supposedly steamed, yet with that nice golden brown finish? And crispy? But how?
Turns out it’s not that hard. Yes, you brown them in a pan. And then you add stock (or water) for the steaming part. If you’ve got a nice wide skillet with a well-fitting lid then you are all set. They’re actually a fun way to be creative, too – you can invent new flavors and sauces based on what you have handy in the fridge. The only thing that’s non-negotiable is the wonton wrappers.
Here’s what you need:
1/2 lb. ground pork
2 Tbsp. minced fresh ginger
1/2 cup minced carrots
1/4 cup minced green onions
3 Tbsp. minced garlic
1 Tbsp. soy sauce
1 Tbsp. sesame oil
1 package wonton wrappers (you probably won’t use all of them)
1.5 cups water or broth
Start by assembling the filling – mix the raw pork, ginger, carrots, green onions, garlic, soy sauce and sesame oil in a bowl. Many traditional recipes use cabbage in the filling too, but I didn’t have any cabbage this day, and I didn’t really miss it (though I do like cabbage). Another thing worth noting: YES, you read that right, put raw pork in the filling. It will be cooking during the steaming portion.
Spoon about 1 to 1 1/2 tsp. into the center of each wonton wrapper. Moisten the edges of the wrapper with the egg, and fold to make a half moon shape. Seal the edges well with your fingers and crimp to make them watertight.
Heat 2 Tbsp. vegetable oil in a large skillet with a well-fitting lid. When the oil is shimmery, add the potstickers one at a time, leaving a little bit of space around them so they do not touch (that’s all the space you really need). Cook until golden brown, then turn over and do the same on the second side. When the other side is nearly done, grab your broth vessel in one hand and your lid in the other. Add about 1.5 cups to the pan and put the lid on immediately. Allow to steam for about five minutes, or until all of the water/broth has been evaporated. Remove from the pan immediately.
Serve with any of your favorite Asian dipping sauces – we went with a mix of soy sauce and red chili paste this time. Be creative!