Duck Egg Curry

Myanmar (Burmese) Duck Egg Curry

Myanmar Duck Egg Curry

Egg curry is a new idea for me, and it really surprised me that I hadn’t considered it before! I tend to bake more than I cook so always have eggs in the house. But often the eggs go passed their best as I struggle to use them up. The main reason I don’t do much cooking is because I don’t like to cook unless there is someone else to cook for. These days my partner is living away as he has gone to university as a mature student, so I find myself having dinner at my sister’s or my mum’s house. Cooking for one can be pretty dull since I tend to stick to a few one-pot recipes.

This Duck Egg Curry I tried for the first time on a recent trip to Myanmar has become my new ‘one pot curry’ recipe! It’s also a tasty way to use up all those left over eggs without having to break out the butter and sugar to bake a cheeky cake… Best served with fresh boiled rice and some stir fried greens!

This dish is commonly found in Myanmar and is a very popular lunch time meal as it is very cheap to make as well as being a quick meal to cook in the morning. I was only in Myanmar for a couple of weeks but learnt that there is still very much a culture of shopping in local wet-markets first thing in the morning. There are more supermarkets popping up in the cities but not many people have refrigerators and electricity is temperamental so it still isn’t practical to stockpile perishable foods.

There are very few ingredients in Duck Egg Curry so can be made from store-cupboard  ingredients if there is no time to visit the market in the morning before the working day starts. In Myanmar it is still the norm that women in the household do the shopping and cooking. As wages are low, it is common to see workers carrying metal tiffin lunch boxes to work in the morning, usually a layer of rice, some curry and some stir fried vegetables. When my colleagues brought out their lunches, I was always excited to see what they had prepared that day. It was so much more exciting than the standard English lunch of sandwiches!

Myanmar Egg Curry

Myanmar Egg Curry

*Recipe courtesy of Harmoneat

Ingredients:

  • 6 Duck Eggs
  • 3 Tomatoes, roughly chopped
  • Shrimp Paste (can fish sauce instead or omit for a vegetarian version)
  • Water
  • 2 tbs Vegetable Oil
  • Salt, to taste
  • 1 Dried Red Chilli
  • 6 Inches Ginger Root, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 2 Cloves of Garlic, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 4 Shallots, peeled and roughly chopped

Method:

  • Soak the dried chilli in some warm water for 10 minutes to soften
  • Boil the duck eggs for 5 minutes until hard boiled, once boiled peel the eggs and cut in half horizontally then set to one side
  • Make the curry paste by pounding the re-hydrated chilli, garlic, ginger and shallots in a pestle and mortar until you get a smooth paste (use a blender if you want to be are short on time)
  • In a deep sided frying pan (with a lid) stir fry the curry paste in the vegetable oil to release the fragrance of the spices, around 3 minutes
  • Add the chopped tomatoes, shrimp paste, and a cup of water. Stir to combine and make a thick curry sauce
  • Place all the egg halves face down into the sauce in one even layer and simmer for a few minutes, before turning all the eggs over so the yolks are facing upwards
  • If the sauce is very thick, add some more water before putting the lid on the pan and simmering for 10-15 minutes. Add salt for seasoning
Duck Egg Curry

Duck Egg Curry

I have cooked this recipe using chicken eggs as a substitute very successfully, as duck eggs are a bit harder to come by back home in the UK! This dish is pretty healthy as not a huge amount of oil is used and the eggs yolks bring richness to the curry. It still tastes great without the shrimp paste for vegetarians; I once forgot to add it! 😉

Red Curry Paste

Red Curry Paste

This red curry paste is a very simple recipe that forms the basis for ‘red’ curries in Myanmar. Make a big batch and keep a home made jar in the fridge sealed with a layer of oil for an fresh curry paste free from preservatives! 😀

For more recipes from Myanmar, check out Harmoneat’s website where you can find downloadable recipe cards. 😀

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Tofu Stir Fry with Chicken and Chorizo rice

Chorizo and Chicken Rice with Tofu and Vegetable Stir Fry

Tofu Stir Fry with Chicken and Chorizo Rice

Tofu Stir Fry with Chicken and Chorizo Rice

I have previously posted a recipe for Macau Portuguese Baked Rice. This time I have used the same flavour combinations but simplified the recipe for a quicker meal that takes less than 30 minutes to put together and serve for a mid week dinner. Refer to the previous recipe, but skip the cheese and boiled eggs so the rice is only steamed on the stove. I poached some chicken with cloves, bay leaves and garlic then left it in the fridge, for when I was cooking this dish. However any left over roast chicken will work too.

Chorizo and Chicken Rice

Chorizo and Chicken Rice

To go with the rice, I quickly stir-fried some ready cooked fried tofu with some chopped leeks, mange tout, celery and mushrooms. These are basically the vegetables I had in the fridge/freezer so any you have to use up could work too.

Tofu Stir Fry

Tofu Stir Fry

Fried tofu is a great vegetarian staple to have in the fridge for a quick and nutritious meal. They can be bought in bags in Asian supermarkets (look in the fridges) or you can deep fry your own tofu.

Fried Tofu Sticks

Fried Tofu Sticks

To add flavour to the tofu and vegetables, I used a couple of table spoons of vegetarian stir-fry sauce (an alternative to oyster sauce), light and dark soy sauce, and sesame oil. The tofu soaks up all the flavours like a sponge, so you can add what ever you like to the sauce. I added a few splashes of water too as the dish was a little too dry. Remember not to over cook the vegetables as you’re looking for the crunchy texture to contrast the soft tofu!

Tofu Stir Fry with Chicken and Chorizo rice

Tofu Stir Fry with Chicken and Chorizo rice

This tofu dish can be served with plain rice or egg fried rice for a filling vegetarian meal.

If you are avoiding gluten, double check the label of the chorizo and cooking sauces for gluten. Gluten free versions can usually be found!

Chicken Tikka and Sweet Potatoes

Chicken Tikka and Roasted Sweet Potato

Chicken Tikka and Sweet Potatoes with yoghurt

Chicken Tikka and Sweet Potatoes with yoghurt

Another quick one-pot mid-week meal!

This is a really simple recipe using a few ingredients and made in advance ready for 45 minutes in the oven.

I bought a free range corn fed chicken and spatchcock-ed (is that really a word!) it so it would cook quicker. The tikka paste used was a shop bought ‘Pataks’ one that was rubbed all over the chicken once it had been slashed in the thickest parts (to allow the flavour to be soaked in as well as too aid faster cooking).

Chicken Tikka and Sweet Potatoes

Chicken Tikka and Sweet Potatoes

Then a few sweet potatoes were cubed and scattered around the chicken in a roasting tin. Salt and pepper added and a little cooking oil sprayed on the sweet potatoes to help crispen them up.

After 45 minutes in 180 degree C oven, check that the chicken in cooked through. Then chop it up and serve on a bed of sweet potatoes, some cooling yoghurt, and some green salad. This dish feeds two hungry adults for dinner with left overs for lunch the next day too!

Chicken Tikka and Sweet Potatoes

Chicken Tikka and Sweet Potatoes

Simple! 🙂

 

Spanish Style Chicken: A Quick One Pot Mid-Week Meal

Spanish Style Chicken with Sour Cream

Spanish Style Chicken with Sour Cream

This is the second time in a week I have eaten this meal. The first time was when I went to a friend’s house for dinner. I like it so much that I asked for the recipe and planned to make it again for a mid-week meal.

I have a group of friends that I have known since I was 11 years old. We all went our separate ways for university and have come back together again in adult life as everyone has begun to settle down and start families etc. Since life is so busy we try and meet at least once a month by taking it in turns to cook a 3 course meal and having the girls over for dinner. We’ve been doing it for a while now and it’s working out really well!

So this month we had a lovely Tomato and Red Pepper Soup, Spanish Style Chicken and Chocolate Fudge Cake with Vanilla Ice-cream. How lucky am I? 🙂

So this recipe is from one of the Hairy Biker’s diet cookbooks. I love the Hairy Bikers! I think they are lovely, down to earth guys who love to eat, and share their love of food with everyone. They are great at making recipes that don’t require lots of fancy ingredients and hence do not cost a lot to put together!

To make it an easy one-pot meal I pre-prepared the potatoes by first part cooking them in the micro-wave the night before. You only need to quarter the potatoes and microwave them for 5 minutes then leave to cool! This is my version of the recipe (because I just did it from memory rather than looking up the actual recipe first!).

Baked Spanish Style Chicken

Baked Spanish Style Chicken

Ingredients

  • 6 red skin potatoes (quartered and part cooked in the microwave- see above)
  • 1 medium red onion (chopped into largish pieces)
  • 1 red pepper (chopped into largish pieces)
  • 1 courgette (chopped into largish pieces)
  • 2 handfuls of Chestnut mushrooms (halved)
  • 2 fresh tomatoes (quartered)
  • Chorizo (I used about 8 thin slices as that is all I had- best to get a whole sausage and chop up)
  • 6 chicken thighs (skin on and with bone)
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • 2 tsp dried herbs
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 2 tbs tomato purée
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • sour cream- to serve

Method

  • In a large casserole/baking dish. Put in everything and toss it all together to evenly coat all the vegetables with the tomato purée and olive oil.
  • Lay the chicken pieces on top (skin side up)
  • Bake at 200 degrees C for about 45-50 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through. Check on it half way through as you may need to turn the vegetables a little. I kept the potatoes near the top so they crispen up a little.
  • Serve in dishes with some sour cream.
Baked Spanish Style Chicken with Sour Cream

Baked Spanish Style Chicken with Sour Cream

This is a great one-pot midweek meal that is so easy to put together and the left-overs can be used up for lunch the next day. I made it a couple of days in advance so the flavours got a chance to mix together more. These days I try and prepare healthy mid-week meals in advance so they can be put straight into the oven with little fuss. And since the weather is terribly cold and miserable at the moment, having a hot and nicely spiced meal brings so much satisfaction after a long day at work! So if you have any suggestions, please feel free to share! 🙂