Shan (Tai) Cooking

Friday, April 14, 2006

Tofu Salad by Feraya Nangmone

Tofu Salad

1 block yellow tofu(4 x 4 x 3 in.)
12 garlic cloves
3 tablespoons chopped coriander leaves
2 tablespoons roasted sesame seeds
6 tablespoons oil
1 teaspoons or less chilli powder
1 tablespoons soy sauce
3 tablespnoos vinegar
11/2 tablespoons roasted gram flour
Salt to taste

1. Slice half the tofu into strips 3 x 1/2 x 1inch thick. Cut rest 2-in. squares, 1/2 inch thick.

2. Peel and chop garlic. Chop coriander finely. Pound roasted sesame seeds till powdered.

3.Heat oil hot; fry the squares of tofu till outsides are browned. Remove tofu from pan and drain. Pour away oil except for 11/2 tablesp. Fry chili powder in this and set aside.

4. Cut fried tofu squares into thin strips with scissors. Mix together the two tofus, sesame seeds, coriander, soy sauce, vinegar, chilli and oil, roasted gram flour and fried garlic. Mix well, and correct for salt.

Sayka Bitter Soup or Inle Eel Soup by Feraya Nangmone

Bitter Soup or Inle Eel Soup (Sayka)
1 small catfish or eel, and extra fish heads, if possible
4 cups water
1/4 teaspoon turmeric
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup dried pe-ton or navy beans
2 tablespoons oil
1 large onion, sliced
1 1/2 tablespoon rice flour
Large handful fresh mint leaves
Tiniest pinch sayka

1. If catfish is used, grill it and flake the meat off. Cut eel in pieces. Boil eel and fish heads, if included, in 4 cups water with turmeric and salt.
2. Wash beans and boil in fish broth till tender.
3. Heat oil and fry sliced onion. Before it browns, put in rice flour mixed with 1 tablespoon water and fry, stirring well.
4. Combine with broth. If grilled fish is used, put in flaked meat now, add water and boil well.
5. Add mint leaves, correct for salt, and just before taking off the cooker to serve, add a tiny pinch of sayka. If the soup is left on the cooker, the sayka will make it too bitter. The soup should be just pleasantly bitter.