Saturday, April 30, 2011

Tom Yum Soup, Fresh Rice Paper Rolls, and Vegan Panna Cotta!

I was home alone today since Nadine had to work (sadface) but it gave me the opportunity to spend all day pottering about in the kitchen!

I found a stalk of lemongrass in the fridge that I harvested last week sometime and I can't remember why, so I decided another Tom Yum Soup would be on the menu. This time I used some of that Vegetarian Oyster Sauce instead of soy sauce, to give it a 'fishy' taste. I couldn't taste any notable difference! (That oyster sauce, by the way, has over 1000mg of sodium per 15mL serve. I don't think I'll rush to buy it again!What it lacks in sugar it makes up with salt.)

In the morning I made up a couple of fresh rice paper rolls to go with it. Inside are: bean thread noodles, fried tofu, shredded purple cabbage and finely sliced carrot. Served with a mix of peanut butter and soy suace. I meant to put sesame oil in the sauce but I forgot about it :(
I was flicking through the Concious Cook to find something for dessert and the Vanilla Bean Panna Cotta with Orange Sauce jumped out at me and screamed 'MAKE ME MAKE ME'. So I did.
Before the sauce. Do you like my pretty plate? It's part of a vintage tea set from Czechoslovakia. I rescued it from Nadine's mum's giant chest of antiques she was getting rid of. I was going to sell it to the Antique center because I really don't have room...but it's so pretty I'm going to keep it.
Oh man. So delicious. The recipe made 6 serves so there's more for the next couple of days! The sauce is amazing - a plain caramel would be better with the vanilla, but I just made what was in the book. It's orange juice and zest, brown sugar and a bit of whiskey. Yum. I was supposed to strain it but I like chunky sauces (and soups, and gravies). The panna cotta itself is basically a cashew cream set with agar agar. It's a little tiem consuming to make (like most of the recipes I've tried in this book) but is completely worth it.
This is how we celebrated the Royal Wedding (which I totally watched. Shame!) Classy, no? Hello Kitty jammies, a hideous Marilyn Manson shirt and two bottles of red wine. I actually enjoyed the wedding very much, I thought it was lovely and romantic. Hahaha. I couldn't make it to the famous balcony pash because before that the stupid announcers started doing the 'fashion judging' which I can't freakin stand. And I thought they were very mean to Beatrice and Eugenie Ferguson.
We ended up taking poor Bob to the vet :( She had a very high temperature and hadn't eaten anything for days. The vet said she probably got into a fight with another cat (no surprise there!) and had an infection, so she gave her an antibiotic shot. We opted for the shot even though it cost more, because we value our arms and faces, and it lasts for two weeks and is less painful for everybody involved! Anyway, she perked right up within hours and has been running around and chowing down on her food and even went visiting with the neighbours! Hooray :)

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