march 28, 2009


There’s no better way to celebrate one mom’s birthday than to have both moms over for lobster. We decided to make a whole Chinese themed meal out of it. My mom, who of course is well-versed in Chinese cuisine, was quite impressed by the food we made.

On the menu: scallion pancakes, bok choi tofu soup, black pepper lobster, ginger scallion lobster, brown rice…and of course, cake!

We ended the night on the rooftop looking at stars and planets with our telescope. It was a clear night and we were all in happy amazement when we saw Saturn and its moon Titan. Happy Birthday Mom!

Scallion Pancakes
2 cups flour
3/4 cup hot water
6 scallions, chopped
vegetable oil
sesame oil
salt
sesame seeds

With the flour in a bowl, add the water (hot, but not boiling). Mix and knead, adding water until flour just begins to stick together. Place a damp paper towel over the dough and let it rest for 30 minutes.

On a lightly floured surface, take a third of the dough and roll into a flat circle. It should be pretty thin. Spread a thin layer of vegetable and sesame oil on the dough. Then sprinkle a fair amount of the scallions and salt on top. Roll the dough into long cigars (scallion side in). Then coil up into small circles. Roll flat with a rolling pin and sprinkle both sides with sesame seeds.

Heat some vegetable oil in a skillet. Swirl the oil around so there’s a thin layer across the skillet. Place the pancake in the oil (it shouldn’t stick) and let it cook. After a few minutes, flip the pancake over and cook a few more minutes. Once both sides are lightly browned, pull the pancake out and blot it dry with some paper towels. Cut into wedges and enjoy the many layers of the scallion pancakes!

Bok Choi Tofu Soup
8 cups water
8 Japanese dried scallops
2 cups bonito shavings
2 tsp dashi (or to taste)
1 inch piece of ginger, sliced
2 scallions, cut into 2 inch pieces
1 package tofu, cut into 1 inch squares
1 1/2 lbs bok choi
1 bunch enoki mushrooms
chopped scallions, for garnish
salt

Boil the water over high heat. Add the bonito shavings, dried, scallops, scallions and ginger. Let simmer for a few hours (one hour at least). The longer it simmers, the more the flavors will be infused in the broth. At this point, you can add the dashi and salt to your liking. After it simmers, strain the broth to pull out bonito shavings, ginger, and scallops. I usually keep the scallops to throw back into the soup.

When you’re almost ready to serve, toss the tofu, mushrooms, and bok choi into the broth and let simmer for a few minutes until the bok choi is cooked through. You can also add noodles to the soup (often we add somen). If you have leftover soup, it can be frozen by straining out the broth/liquid.

Black Pepper Lobster
2 lbs lobster
flour, for coating
2 shallots, finely chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
5 dried scallops, soaked in water
3 tbs freshly ground black pepper
2 coarsely chopped thai chilis
1 tbs soy sauce
2 tbs oyster sauce
oil for frying

Steam the lobsters for about 15 minutes or until almost cooked. Split and clean lobsters as necessary. Break the claws with the back of a knife (to allow flavors to get into the meat). Lightly coat the lobster in flour and set aside.

Heat a few tablespoons of oil over high heat, for frying. Throw the chilis into the oil and cook for 30 seconds. Add garlic and shallots and cook another 30 seconds. Add the ground pepper to the pan and stir quickly for a minute. Add lobster and remaining ingredients. Saute for 3 minutes, making sure the lobster is well coated in the pepper mixture. Serve immediately!

Ginger Scallion Lobster
3 lbs lobster
flour, for coating
4 dried scallops, soaked
2 tbs oyster sauce
1 tsp white pepper
1 tsp sesame oil
4 tbs sugar
6 tbs water
2 tsp corn starch
4 inches of ginger, sliced
4 scallions, cut into 2 inch pieces
oil for frying

Steam the lobsters for about 15 minutes or until almost cooked. Split and clean lobsters as necessary. Break the claws with the back of a knife (to allow flavors to get into the meat). Lightly coat the lobster in flour and set aside.

To make the sauce, mix the oyster sauce, white pepper, sesame oil, sugar, water and corn starch together. Set aside.

Heat a few tablespoons of oil over high heat, for frying. Add the ginger and stir-fry for about a minute. Add the lobster, stir and cook for another minute. Then add the sauce and remaining ingredients. Saute for 3 minutes, making sure the lobster is well coated in the sauce. Serve while hot!






responses to mom’s lobster bday

Mom:
April 3, 2009

It was scrumptious!
Beautiful to look at and delicious to eat.
A great birthday!
Mom



jennifer:
April 3, 2009

We still have cake for you! Frozen along with the fruit and chocolate topping.



Olga:
April 5, 2009

oh wow, that looks like a gorgeous menu!
I would so make this soup, but my bok choy might be a bit dead :)



christina:
April 5, 2009

jen…my favorite food in the entire world is lobster!!
lucky mommy!




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