People, I’m back!
Well, sort of back. I’m currently in San Francisco waiting to fly home into the Polar Vortex. It’s been quite a whirlwind couple of weeks and I’m starting to feel not quite like myself. As much as I do love to travel (and travel I do, often), there comes a point that I’m over my trip and ready to head back to life as I know it. I’m such a creature of routine and being out of it, I start to long for the comfort of my apartment, the peace of my yoga mat, the serenity of the pool, and the bounty of my kitchen. I haven’t properly cooked in close to two weeks (TWO WEEKS!) and with a few more days of settling back into life, it won’t be until next week’s adventures in Mexican cooking when I start to see if still know how.
Until then, I’ll continue what I started last week with Pad Thai by offering more of Fava’s taste of Thailand. Today, a green papaya salad and fried cashew nut with chicken.
I will say that helping Fava prep and making this food myself, the time suck is really the mise en place (the chopping and setting everything up). However, get that out of the way early in the week and throwing these together night-of makes this a weeknight friendly dinner.
- 2 large cloves garlic, minced
- 2-3 large fresh birds eye chiles (depending on desired heat level)
- 2 tsp packed light brown sugar
- 2 TB dried shrimp
- 12 ounces grated green papaya, from a 2-pound whole papaya
- 4 ounces cherry tomatoes, halved crosswise
- 4 ounces green beans, cut into 1 ½ inch pieces
- 2 TB fish sauce
- 3 TB lime juice, freshly squeezed
- ½ cup roasted peanuts, coarsely chopped
- In a large gallon size plastic food-storage bag, place the papaya, tomato and green beans. Set aside.
- Using a mortar and pestle, combine the garlic, shrimp and chiles until they form a thick paste. In a small bowl, add this paste to the sugar, fish sauce and lime juice. Dissolve to form the dressing.
- Add the dressing to the bag with the papaya, knead and squeeze until everything is blended together. Add the chopped peanuts and season to taste.
- If you can find palm sugar, use 1TB of that rather than the brown sugar.
- 1 pound chicken breast, cut into small chunks
- 1 cup cashews
- 1 cup oyster mushrooms
- 8 baby corns, thinly sliced
- ½ large onion, sliced to medium thickness
- 4 TB spring onion, sliced into 1” width
- 1 TB garlic, chopped
- 1 dried chili, thinly sliced
- ½ TB fish sauce
- 2 TB oyster sauce
- 1 tsp brown or palm sugar
- 1 TB vegetable oil
- In a little bowl, add the fish sauce, oyster sauce and sugar. Set aside.
- Place the oil in a wok heated to high and stir fry the cashew nuts until brown. Set aside.
- In the wok still hot and filled with oil, fry the garlic until golden. Add the chicken and fry until chicken is cooked.
- Add the mushroom, onion, corn and chili. Add the liquids.
- Add the spring onion and cooked cashew nuts. Stir until well coated and cooked through. Serve with rice.