I love this Thai Buddhist Goddess. She reminds me of how I feel at times, doing so many things, needing to have a million arms all active and engaged at once. Sometimes I just want her in my house, smoothing the paths, getting rid of obstacles and negative energies, and blasting her way through all tasks. Jai to this beautiful Buddhist Goddess.
Bali and Food
Ages and ages ago I went to Bali for 2.5 weeks, and for five of those days did a magnificent Balinese cooking class. It was great – half a day spent out in the community being exposed to all sorts of food things, then back into an outdoor tropical kitchen. Here we learnt about spices and herbs, the many many varieties of rice in Bali, how to mash and grind with volcanic rock grinders, and the wonder of Balinese food. Thank you Matt, Executive Chef and key presenter of the course.
We saw salt being harvested, tofu and tempeh being made using traditional methods, 4am markets, coffee being picked and roasted. We went snorkelling with fish, had high tea on a Balinese pavillion on the side of a mountain, were served moonlight dinners, saw a traditional closed village (recently opened) and watched traditional fabrics being woven. We visited families in compounds and saw how they lived.
It was such a fabulous time, a great experience, a great memory. I came back with a swathe of recipes which I supplemented with a CD full of Balinese food from a local Balinese restaurant.
Two years ago: Peppered Rice
Three years ago: Makhana Palak - Lotus Seeds in Spinach Gravy
Four years ago: Ghee Whiz - Making Ghee
Balinese Coconut Rice – Nasi Lemak
WARNING: THE AROMA OF THIS WHILE COOKING IS MIND BLOWING!
Source : inspired by my cooking class in Bali
Prep time: 4 hours soaking plus 10 mins prep.
Cooking time: 20 – 25 mins
Serves: 4 – 6 people, depending how you use it
2 shallots, chopped very finely
1 clove garlic, chopped very finely, or minced
0.75 – 1 tspn finely chopped or minced ginger root
300 ml santan (coconut cream – fresh if you have that luxury, or tinned if you don’t)
salt to taste
black pepper, freshly ground
for garnish (optional)
fresh pineapple chunks
Wash the rice and let it soak for four hours or more, then drain thoroughly.
Half cook the rice, perhaps a little more. My rice cooker usually takes 20 minutes, so I let it cook for around 10. If you usually cook your rice for 15 minutes, cook it for about 9 mins, and so on. Then drain it thoroughly.
Meanwhile, bring the coconut cream to the boil in a large saucepan. Add the chopped shallot, garlic and ginger, and season with a little salt and some black pepper.
Stir well and cook for 1 minute. Then add teh partially cooked rice and stir to blend thoroughly.
Cook over a good heat, stirring frequently to avoid sticking, until most of the liquid has been absorbed. Cover with a tight fitting lid (important that it is tight fitting), turn off the heat and without disturbing, leave to finish cooking for 7 – 10 minutes.
Stir and serve, garnished with slices of cucumber and chunks of pineapple. Or strew with chopped green shallots (spring onions in Australia). It also forms a wonderful base for a dal or wet vegetable curry.
The Rice Series
- Bengali Rice Kheer – Chaler Payesh
- Caramelised Pumpkin Risotto
- Go Spanish – Tomato Paella
- How to Cook Rice
- Peppered Rice
- Pomodori con Riso – Tomatoes stuffed with Rice
- Risotto Basics 101
- Rizogalo – Greek Rice Pudding
- Rosa Matta Rice
- Steamy Buttery Rice
- Ven Pongal