This is a place where I collect and archive recipes from all over the place. These recipes were picked because these are food that I love to eat. I copied the recipes from other sources and I have included the links to each source.

I have cooked some of these dishes and I would be happy to discuss my story with you. Feel free to email me at or check out my food blog

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Crispy Roast Pork Belly (Siu Yuk)


Crispy Roast Pork Belly (Siu Yuk)

by wiffy on January 12, 2012
Siu Yuk
Crispy Roast Pork Belly 脆皮燒肉
Home-made crispy roast pork belly (Siu Yok/Shao Rou) may sound daunting, but it is actually quite easy, thanks to the oven doing the bulk of the work. Most of the preparation time is a no-work zone – chilling the marinated meat in the fridge, or slow-roasting it in the oven. Home-made crispy roast pork  is superior to store-bought ones because of the super crispy and crackling skin. It is so crispy that you can hear the nosiy, firecracker music as you are slicing the meat and eating it. Feel free to increase the quantity of meat in this recipe (adjust the marinade ingredients accordingly) so long as they occupy one layer in the oven during roasting. If you have leftover roast pork, you can use them in your stir-fries and fried rice.
Step 1 (Scrap the skin with a knife to remove impurities) Step 2 (make random short, diagonal slits on the skin) Marinade
Step 3 (marinating the meat) Step 4 (dry overnight in fridge) After roasting for 30 minutes
Slicing the cooked pork belly Slicing the meat Crispy Roast Pork Belly
- 750g pork belly (uncut slab)
- 2 tsp sea salt, divided
- 1/2 tbsp five-spice powder
- 1/4 tsp white pepper
- water
- kitchen paper towels
- bamboo skewer (satay stick)
- oven-safe ramekin and roasting tray
1. Use kitchen tweezers to pull out stray hair on the pork belly skin, if any. Use a knife to scrap the skin for a few minutes to remove impurities. Rinse pork belly stab and pat dry with paper towels.
2. Holding a small knife in a stabbing action, make short diagonal slits with the tip of the knife on the surface of the skin (but not cutting into the meat) at random. I asked the market butcher to help me with this step when I bought the meat.
3. Combine 1 tsp salt, 5-spice powder and white pepper in a small bowl. Rub the marinade all over the meat portion only. If any marinade gets on the skin, rub it off with a paper towel.
4. Rub the remaining 1 tsp salt on the skin. Place pork belly on a plate, uncovered, skin side up and let it marinade for a few hours or preferably overnight in the refrigerator. The purpose is to dry the skin thoroughly and also to allow the marinade to seep into the meat.
5. When ready to roast, first place a ramekin in the center of a semi-deep roasting tray (I am using a bread tin). Fill the tray with some water and place the pork belly on the ramekin.  Be careful not to let the skin get wet, if that happens, pat dry with paper towel.
6. Bake the pork belly at preheated oven of 220°C for 30 minutes to get the blistering on the skin started.
7. By this time, the skin will be softened and you can see some blistering on the skin. Using a bamboo skewer, poke as many holes as you can on the portion of the skin which is still soft.
8. Return pork belly and roast at 200°C for another 90 minutes, or until the skin is roasted to crispy perfection. At every 30 minutes interval, top up the water in the tray and poke holes with a bamboo skewer on the portion of the skin which is still soft.
9. Place the cooked pork on a wire rack and allow the meat to rest for about 15 minutes before cutting.
10. Scrap off charred areas from the skin, if any, with a knife. Place the meat on a chopping board, skin side down. Slice a strip of pork, and further cut the strip to smaller, bite-sized pieces.
Cooking Notes
1. Tips for getting perfect crispy skin:
- The skin has to be very dry and hence it is recommended to dry it in the refrigerator for a few hours, preferably overnight.
- The slits and holes made on the skin (not so deep that it cut into the meat) helps it to crackle, so make as many as you can but do not cut into the meat.
- Roast the pork on a higher rack closer to the heating coil.
2. The water helps the meat to be tender and moist, while allowing the oil to drip directly onto it for easy cleaning.
3. Before the meat has been cooked, the skin is very tough and it is difficult to make cuts on it. Some recipes suggest blanching the meat first but I find that after blanching, the meat will not absorb the marinade well. Hence I use my method of first making slits on the raw skin with the tip of the knife by holding the knife in a stabbing action (I saw my butcher doing so). After the meat has been roasted for 30 minutes, the skin will be soft and it will now be very easy to poke holes on the skin using bamboo skewers.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Rice Pudding

arborio rice

Having attempted numerous rice pudding recipes over the last couple of decades, I was never really satisfied with any of them. That is, until I came across this one in Fine Cooking last summer. It calls for the addition of egg yolks, which is what you do to make custard. SCORE!

eggs, sugar, salt, vanilla bean, cinnamon
pour in a quart of whole milk

The version I made uses arborio rice because I wanted it to be a thick pudding. This short grain rice offers more starch to help achieve that lovely consistency. Everything but the eggs simmers on the stove until the rice is tender. At that point, you want to add the egg yolks – but if you stir them directly into the rice pudding, they will curdle… cook. That’s blegh. Instead, beat the egg yolks in a medium bowl, and whisk in a cup of the hot rice pudding to temper the yolks. It’s enough to bring the egg temperature up without cooking the eggs. Then stir that mixture into the saucepan.

a little rice goes a long way
tempering the egg yolks

Stir the pudding over medium heat until it thickens. It’s just like making custard for many of the ice cream recipes in my archives. You can serve this hot or cold. I like both. The original recipe offers mixing in some whipped cream, but I am perfectly happy without it. This is a creamy, rich, thick pudding all on its own and it is fantastic comfort food.

to share or not to share…

Rice Pudding
Fine Cooking, issue #111 (June/July 2011) 1 vanilla bean
4 cups plus 2/3 cups whole milk
1/2 cup white rice, such as Carolina long grain,basmati, jasmine, or arborio (I used arborio)
7 tbsps granulated sugar
3-inch cinnamon stick
2 large egg yolks
Use a knife to split the vanilla bean lengthwise and scrape the seeds out. Place the seeds, vanilla bean, 4 cups of the milk, the rice, sugar, and cinnamon stick in a medium saucepan over medium heat until the milk comes to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and stir often and gently until the rice is tender – approximately 25 minutes. Remove from heat. Whisk the egg yolks in a medium bowl. Continue to whisk the egg yolks while ladling in a cup of the hot rice-milk to “temper” the egg yolks (to avoid cooking the eggs like it would if you poured the eggs directly into the saucepan). Scrape the egg mixture back into the saucepan and stir in the last 2/3 cup of milk until everything is incorporated. Return the saucepan to the stove on medium heat and stir constantly until the rice pudding starts to boil (only a few minutes). Remove from heat and place the pudding in a medium bowl and set plastic wrap directly on the surface of the pudding. Place the bowl in or on an ice bath to cool. When the pudding has cooled, you can remove the cinnamon stick and vanilla bean. Divvy the pudding into 6 servings, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 3 hours. I like to grate some nutmeg on top right before serving.

Jerk Chicken


Poulet's Jerk Chicken Thighs

This Recipe Appears In:
Cook the Book: 'Poulet'
[Photograph: France Ruffenach]
As always with our Cook the Book feature, we have five (5) copies of Poulet to give away this week.
The secret to really great jerk chicken is in the rub, and these Jerk Chicken Thighs from Poulet have cracked the code with a seemingly incongruous blend of Scotch bonnets, cloves, cinnamon, allspice, celery seed, cumin, nutmeg, sugar, and salt. Blended together into a paste and rubbed onto skin-on chicken thighs, this spice rub has the power to seep deep into the chicken.
The recipe calls for grilling, but a blazing hot cast iron will do the trick here—just be prepared for a little bit of smoke in the kitchen. You're looking for the jerk rub and the chicken skin to get nice and dark, and even blacken in spots making for crispy, spicy skin and juicy dark meat.
Why you should make this: While this chicken might not be the cooked over an oil drum grill in Jamaica, it's a pretty great for not being on vacation.
Next time we might think about: Thyme is a common ingredient in many jerk recipes and we'd like to see how it fits in here. And if you can handle the heat feel free to up the habanero factor.
Adapted from Poulet by Cree LaFavour. Copyright © 2011. Published by Chronicle Books. Available wherever books are sold. All Rights Reserved.


yield: serves 4, active time 45 minutes, total time 1 hour 45 minutes
  • 2 tablespoons peanut oil
  • 1/2 head garlic, cloves peeled and minced
  • 1 or 2 Scotch bonnet chiles, minced
  • 1 teaspoon celery seeds
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon raw sugar
  • 8 to 10 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs


  1. 1
    In a small bowl, combine the peanut oil, garlic, chile(s), celery seeds, cumin, allspice, nutmeg, cloves, cinnamon, salt, and sugar and stir to make a smooth paste. Spread 2 to 3 teaspoons of the paste on the skin of the chicken thighs. Let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes before cooking.
  2. 2
    Build a medium fire in a charcoal or wood grill or heat a gas grill to medium. Use a clean, well-cured grate. If you are using charcoal or wood, you want hot embers, not flames.
  3. 3
    Arrange the thighs, skin-side down, on the grill and let them cook for 5 minutes or so before you move them. After that, I like to flip them every 5 minutes or so to keep them from sticking and to keep from burning the skin. Plan on standing, turning, flipping and generally worrying the chicken for 30 to 40 minutes.
  4. 4
    If your chicken is burning or the fat is igniting flames, turn the heat down or move the chicken to a cooler spot on the grill. (You can also douse the flames with a squirt bottle if there’s no room to move the chicken out of the way.) Work slowly and the result will be a deep-mahogany-colored exterior concealing a well-cooked but juicy interior. That smoky flavor and crispy skin are worth the wait.
  5. 5
    When the chicken is done, you will see that is has shrunk considerably. The meat should be firm but with a little give when you poke it with your finger. Look for a reading of 175°F on an instant-read thermometer. If you’re unsure, cut into a piece and take a peek. Look for clear, not red or pink, juices running from the spot where you pierced the meat and opaque, barley pink flesh at the bone.
  6. 6
    Platter the chicken and serve.


Clear Layer
4 cups (960ml) water
2 tbsp agar-agar powder
½ cup (110g) sugar
¼ tsp rose essence


Prepare an 8”x8” pan, 7”x5½ pan, and a small heart shape (or any other shape) cookie cutter.

Prepare the red layer first. Bring water to a boil in a medium sized saucepan. Add sugar and agar-agar, stirring constantly until sugar and agar-agar dissolve, about 4 to 5 minutes. Stir in rose essence and red food coloring. Turn off heat. Pour agar-agar mixture into 8”x8” pan. Allow agar-agar to set in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
Unmold agar-agar and place it on a cutting board. Using cookie cutters, cut out shapes. Place cut-out shapes in desired arrangement back onto the 8”x8” pan and the 7”x5½” pan.
Now, prepare the clear layer. Bring water to a boil in a medium sized saucepan. Add sugar and agar-agar, stirring constantly until sugar and agar-agar dissolve, about 4 to 5 minutes. Stir in rose essence. Pour agar-agar mixture into pans with cut-out shapes. Shapes may move about slightly. Use a fork or chopsticks to straighten the shapes if necessary. Allow agar-agar to set in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
Unmold and cut into squares or shapes as desired. Serve cold.

Most elaborate beef noodle soup ever

beef shank, beef marrow bones, green onions, ginger, garlic, thai bird chiles

soy sauce, soy paste, dark soy sauce, chili black bean sauce, fermented bean curd, tomato paste

brown sugar, star anise, cinnamon sticks, dried orange peel, bay leaves, fennel seeds, cinnamon bark, sichuan peppercorns, black peppercorns

I’ve had a variety of homemade and restaurant versions of this beloved soup. I’ve flipped through many recipes and never found one that really called to me, until the other day when Carolyn posted a link to Chef Hou Chun-sheng’s winning spicy beef noodle soup recipe. Winning, because Chef Hou dusted his competitors at the Taipei International Beef Noodle Festival in 2011. I had most of the spices, but for those in short supply or those I didn’t have, I knew where to go.

got some more fennel seeds, bay leaves, cinnamon sticks, and picked up cassia bark
from savory spice shop, of course

chinese herb bags: cinnamon stick, cinnamon bark, orange peel, anise, fennel seeds, sichuan peppercorns

Savory Spice Shop in Boulder always has what I’m looking for. However, there were two items that I think are pretty specific to Chinese herbal medicine stores: the cassia buds and the angelica root. They didn’t have them (although they looked them up and told me what they were) and I decided it wasn’t worth the scavenger hunt at the Asian markets. My parents hadn’t heard of those either and my dad suggested I omit them. I don’t know if this is kosher or not, but I dried my own organic orange peel. I got beef marrow bones because the butcher said it would lend a deeper flavor to the broth. This soup is ALL about the broth. It costs more, but I am convinced it is worth it. As for beef shank, I rarely find whole beef shank anywhere but in the Asian markets, so I picked up a few pounds of the bone-in cut beef shank.

make broth from the bones
aromatics: green onions, ginger, garlic, thai bird chiles

adding soy sauce, brown sugar, and hot bean paste to the sautéed aromatics

Now, you can make this in one longish day or you can make this over the course of two days. It really depends on a couple of factors: 1) if you use a conventional stock pot or if you use a pressure cooker and 2) if you defat the broth and sauce (at all, the quick way, or the slow way). Personally, I feel the pressure cooker is the better choice because it is so much faster, more energy efficient, and achieves a tenderness in the beef that is effortless. Physics. It is totally your BFF.

let the sauce cook for a minute
then pour it into the beef stock

add fermented tofu, tomato paste, herb bag, bay leaf, and black peppercorns to the broth

The stock can either simmer for 6 hours in the stock pot, or go 30 minutes in the pressure cooker (and then another 30 minutes on natural decompression). Six hours versus one hour? Did I ever mention how much I love my pressure cooker? Regardless of which method you choose, when you first boil the bones in water, you need to skim off the scum that surfaces for the first ten or fifteen minutes. The beef stock is part 1. Now on to part 2, which is the beef sauce.

add enough water to cover the beef shanks
cooked through

You will need another pot if your beef stock is cooking on the stove. If you can, use a pressure cooker. I don’t have two (yet), but if I did, I would have done this in my second pressure cooker. The beef shanks are boiled in water until they are cooked through. Remove the shanks and strain the beef water into another vessel. Don’t throw the beef water out – it’s got flavor. I think if I had found whole shanks, I might not need to have strained the water. Because I had bone-in shanks, I wanted to remove any potential bone bits and junk from the beef water by straining it through a fine-mesh sieve (you will use the sieve a lot for this recipe). Wipe the pot down and sauté the remaining half of the aromatics just like you did for the beef broth, then add the sugar, hot bean paste, and soy sauce.

stir in fermented bean curd, dark soy sauce, and soy paste
add the black peppercorns, bay leaf, herb bag, and the beef

pour in the beef water

The recipe calls for adding just enough beef water, but I added all of it. Also, before I started blogging, I never knew there was anything other than soy sauce. Now I know there is soy paste, soy sauce, dark soy sauce, light soy sauce, thick soy sauce… And they are all in my cupboard and refrigerator. Right, so you let the beef simmer for 30 minutes or another 2 hours if you want it tender. Take it from me – you want it tender. There is something quite magical when meat reaches that “falling off the bone” tenderness stage. Barbecue aficionados know of what I speak. I waited for my pressure cooker to finish its first job (the broth) before putting it to work on the beef. I set it on high for 30 minutes with a natural decompression (another 30 minutes).

broth is done (nearly clean bone)
strained broth

removing fat from the chilled broth

I defat all of my homemade broths. My mom always does this and I think the end product is healthier. Maybe it’s just habit, but I think it is a good one. It does requires a few extra steps. The photo above shows how you defat by chilling the broth (I put it on my deck which was reading 10°F) and skimming off the solidified fat. Another favorite method which is much faster is the ziploc bag trick where you pour hot broth into a giant ziploc, seal it, then pierce a hole at the bottom corner and drain the broth into a vessel, pinching the corner shut right as the fat layer reaches it. I give more detailed instructions in the recipe below. When the beef is done, I take the beef out of the sauce and remove any connective or fatty tissue from the meat. Strain the sauce through a fine-mesh sieve and defat it. At this point you should have tender beef, beef broth, and beef sauce. The soup base is 4 parts beef broth to 1 part beef sauce. Now let’s gather the noodles and all of the goodies. Toppings can include lettuce, chopped tomatoes, fresh cilantro…

my favorite toppings: black bean hot sauce, chili oil, baby bok choy, green onions
cooked noodles, broth, sauce, beef, chili oil, sautéed bok choy, green onions, hot sauce

ladling beef broth over the noodles, bok choy, and beef

a drizzle of chili oil

It’s good. It is so good! I made mine spicy, because that’s what Chinese people do. Jeremy had his “plain” and gave it a happy nod of approval, his smile barely keeping in the mouthful of noodles. My parents had expressed their doubts over the phone, but they were equally curious as to how it would turn out. It’s rare that I will actually stamp my feet with joy when I sit down to eat, but this is one happy-making bowl of Taiwanese beef noodle soup.

the happy-maker

Taiwanese Beef Noodle Soup
[print recipe]
from Chef Hou via Food Gal with lots of my own notes 2.5 lbs. beef bones (mine were beef marrow bones)
2.5 lbs. beef shank (mine had bone in the middle)
herb bags
2 g whole star anise (about 2)
2 g (1 tsp) fennel seeds
2 g angelica roots (I omitted because I couldn’t find it)
2 g dried orange peel (about 4 pieces)
6 g (1 tbsp) Sichuan peppercorns
6 g cassia buds (I omitted because I couldn’t find it)
6 g (1 tbsp) cinnamon bark
6 g cinnamon sticks (two 3-inch sticks)
aromatics and such
4 tbsps vegetable oil
6 green onions, 4 chopped into 3-inch pieces, 2 finely sliced for topping
12-14 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed
2-inch piece of ginger, peeled and sliced lengthwise about 1/8-inch thickness
4 Thai bird chiles, halved and seeded
1 oz rock sugar or 2 tbsps dark brown sugar
3/4 cup hot bean paste
1 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup spicy fermented bean curd
1/4 cup tomato paste
1 tbsp black peppercorns
2 large Bay leaves
4 1/2 tbsps soy paste
2 1/2 tbsps dark soy sauce
to serve
noodles of your choice
baby bok choy for garnish (optional)
chili oil for garnish (optional)
other spicy chili pastes of your liking (optional)
fresh cilantro for garnish (optional – I omitted)
Equipment: Either way, you’re going to be washing a lot of dishes. You will need: a large stock pot or pressure cooker – two is preferable if you’re into multi-tasking (which I am), a medium saucepan, a mesh skimmer, a fine-mesh sieve, and two cloth spice bags.
Chinese herb bags: [You don't have to use herb bags if you plan on straining your broth and sauce.] Split all of the herb bag ingredients in half and place the halves in two separate spice bags. Each bag should contain approximately: 1 whole star anise, 1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds, 1 gram angelica roots (I omitted because I couldn’t find this), 2 pieces of dried orange peel, 1/2 tablespoon Sichuan peppercorns, 3 g cassia buds (I omitted because I couldn’t find this), 1/2 tablespoon cinnamon bark, and one 3-inch cinnamon stick. Tie the bags off.
Make the beef broth: Place the beef bones and a gallon of water in a large stock pot or the pot of pressure cooker. Bring the water to a boil and skim off the scum that accumulates on the surface for about 10-15 minutes or until the scum production reduces considerably. Let it continue to boil gently while you work on the aromatics. In a medium saucepan, heat 2 tablespoons of the vegetable oil and sauté half of the: green onions, ginger, garlic, and Thai bird chiles until fragrant. Then add half of the: sugar, hot bean paste, and soy sauce. Let it all simmer for a minute and then pour the contents into the beef broth. Stir half of the fermented bean curd and all of the tomato paste into the broth. Add half of the black peppercorns, one bay leaf, and one bag of Chinese seasonings to the broth. If cooking with a conventional stock pot, simmer the broth for 6 hours. If cooking with a pressure cooker, I let it cook on high (Fagor setting 2) for 30 minutes and natural decompression. Strain the broth with a sieve. Discard the solids.
Defatting the broth (optional): I like to defat my broth and there are a couple of tricks I use. The first and fastest is to set a gallon-size ziploc bag in a bowl or container with high sides. Pour the broth into the bag taking care not to spill. Don’t fill it up, leave it a cup or two shy of capacity. Seal the ziploc and make sure you don’t squeeze it from the bottom, busting the seal open and spilling hot broth all over the place. Holding the ziploc from one of the top corners, you should have a bottom corner pointed down toward a large, clean vessel to capture the broth. It’s highly advisable to do this in your sink. By now you should see the fat separating into a nice layer on the top. Lower the bottom corner of the bag into the vessel (if it’s too far above the vessel, you will spray broth all over the place) and with the tip of a very sharp knife, poke a little hole just 1/8-inch above the corner. The broth should spill slowly into the vessel as you hold it from the top. If you’re comfortable with the method, make the hole bigger and let the broth drain faster. As the fat layer approaches the hole, pinch it off with your fingers. Discard the fat and ziploc. If you had more broth than would fit into the first ziploc, repeat with a second bag until you are done defatting all of the broth. The second method is less wasteful, but takes longer. Essentially, you want to cool the broth until the fat (which floats to the top) solidifies so you can skim it off. I really hate putting such a large volume of warm broth in my refrigerator and since I only make these kinds of soups in winter, I just cover it with a lid or plastic wrap and let it cool on my deck which ranges anywhere from -25°F to 30°F for a good fraction of the year. [Note: My deck is a 2nd story deck and has no "access" from the ground floor. I would never put it on my front doorstep. If you live in a place where critters abound, I wouldn't recommend putting it outside unattended where said critters could get into your delicious broth.]
Cook the beef shank and make the beef sauce: Place the beef shank in a pot or saucepan and fill with enough water to just cover the beef. Boil the beef shank until the meat is cooked through. If using whole shanks, remove the beef from the water and slice into disks about 1 1/2 inches in thickness (Chef Hou says 1/3-inch thick, but I like the beef thicker). If using beef shank cuts, just remove from the water and set aside. Save the beef water. In a large saucepan, stock pot, or pressure cooker pot, heat 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil and sauté the remaining green onions, ginger, garlic, and Thai bird chiles until fragrant. Add the rest of the sugar, hot bean paste, and soy sauce. Let cook for a minute. Stir in the remaining fermented bean curd, all of the soy paste, and all of the dark soy sauce. Lastly, add the rest of the black peppercorns, one bay leaf, and the other Chinese herb bag. Place the beef in the stock pot or pressure cooker containing the sauce. Add all of the beef water and stir to make sure it mixes with the sauce. If cooking with a conventional stock pot or saucepan, cover with lid and simmer for at least 30 minutes. If you want the meat to be tender, let it cook for another couple of hours, but check on the water levels to make sure they don’t get too low. If cooking with a pressure cooker, your only option is tender meat. Again, I let mine cook on high (Fagor setting 2) for 30 minutes with natural decompression. If using bone-in shank, the meat should fall off the bone when it is done. While the beef is warm, I like to discard any fat or connective tissue from the meat, reserving the lean beef in a separate vessel. Strain the sauce through a sieve and discard the solids. Follow the defatting process as listed above for the beef broth if desired.
Assembly: Bring fresh water to a boil and cook your noodles (fresh or dried). Drain the noodles and let cool. Blanch or sauté baby bok choy and set aside. Combine 4 parts beef broth with 1 part beef sauce in a saucepan. Add beef to the broth and bring to a boil. Remove from heat. Place noodles in a bowl and top with beef shank, bok choy, and chopped green onions. Ladle the broth-sauce over the noodles. Drizzle some hot chili oil over top (purely optional, but mandatory in my book) and serve with more hot chili sauce on the side. Serves 10-12. Makes about 10 cups of broth and 8 cups of sauce.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Palak Paneer (creamed spinach and cheese)

  • (according to comments, might need to blanch and dry the spinach to remove excess water)

  • 6 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger root
  • 2 dried red chile peppers
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped onion
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 3/4 cup sour cream
  • 3 pounds fresh spinach, torn
  • 1 large tomato, quartered
  • 4 sprigs fresh cilantro leaves
  • 8 ounces ricotta cheese
  • coarse sea salt to taste


  1. In a large saucepan heat 3 tablespoons of olive oil and saute garlic, 1/2 tablespoon of ginger, red chilies (optional ingredient) and onion until brown. Mix in the cumin, coriander, turmeric and sour cream (add more or less to achieve desired creaminess). Add the spinach, handfuls at a time until it is cooked down, about 15 minutes total. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly.
  2. Pour spinach mixture into a blender or food processor and add the tomato, the remaining 1/2 tablespoon of ginger, and cilantro (add more or less according to taste). Blend for 15 to 30 seconds, or until the spinach is finely chopped. Pour back into the saucepan and keep warm over low heat.
  3. In a medium frying pan heat 3 tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat, and fry cheese until browned; drain and add to spinach. Cook for 10 minutes on low heat. Season with salt to taste.