Monday, October 19, 2020

ZHA CAI ROUSI MIAN (Pork & Noodle Soup)

4-6 ounces pork shoulder or pork loin (cut into thin strips) 1 teaspoon cornstarch 1 teaspoon vegetable oil 1 teaspoon Shaoxing wine 1 teaspoon oyster sauce 1/8 teaspoon salt FOR THE REST OF THE SOUP: 8 ounces fresh white noodles or 4 oz dried noodles) 4 cups chicken stock (preferably homemade) 1 tablespoon vegetable oil 7 ounces pickled mustard stems or radish 1/4 teaspoon sugar 1/2 teaspoon sesame oil 1 scallion (chopped) INSTRUCTIONS In a small bowl, combine the pork, cornstarch, oil, wine, oyster sauce, and salt. Set aside to marinate while preparing the other ingredients. Bring a pot of water to a boil for the noodles, and cook according to package instructions. Drain and distribute between two bowls. Meanwhile, in another pot, bring the chicken stock to a boil and keep warm on the stove. Taste for seasoning and season with salt to taste if desired. Heat your wok over high heat until smoking. Add a tablespoon of oil, and stir-fry the pork until browned. Add the Zha Cai and sugar, and stir-fry for 2 minutes. Ladle hot broth over the noodles, and top with the pork and Zha Cai mixture. Garnish with a drizzle of sesame oil and scallions. Serve.

Chongqing/Xiaomiang Noodles

2 teaspoons light soy sauce
1 teaspoon dark soy sauce
½ teaspoon Chinese black vinegar
2 scallions
1 teaspoon ginger
1 tablespoon garlic
1½ tablespoon
chili oil
½ teaspoon sesame oil
3 tablespoons za-cai (pickled mustard stem)
3 tablespoons oil
1/4 tsp msg
1/8 tsp ground sichuan peppercorn
cup raw peanuts
200 grams dried rice noodle
1 cup leafy greens of choice
1/4 cup cilantro

Mix all ingredients and add cooked noodles and greens. Can also top with braised beef, toasted sesame seeds. Add hot beef or chicken broth for soup.

Thursday, October 8, 2020

Kung Pao Chicken

1 lb / 500g chicken thigh , cut into bite size pieces
SAUCE
2 tsp cornstarch
1 tbsp light soy sauce
1.5 tbsp dark soy sauce
2 tbsp Chinese black vinegar
1 tbsp Chinese cooking wine
3 tbsp sugar
1/2 tsp sesame oil1
1/3 cup water
STIR FRY
2 tbsp peanut oil
2 garlic cloves , minced
1 tsp ginger , finely chopped
6 - 10 dried chillies
3 green onions , cut into 1/2" pices, white parts separated
1.5 tsp ground sichuan peppercorns
3/4 cup whole peanuts (or 1/2 cup halved) , roasted unsalted

Sichuan Spicy Beef Noodle Soup

 Stock
1" knob ginger
2-3 scallions
2-3 TB Shaoxing wine
1-2 lbs beef chuck, ribs, neck, ox-tail...
Soup
3 tablespoon oil
1 TB Sichuan peppercorns
1 head garlic smashed
1 small onion sliced
2-3 star anise
2 bay leaves
2 TB doubanjiang (spicy bean paste)
1/4 cup light soy sauce
1 tsp sugar 
1 large tomato (cut into small chunks)
Handful blanched greens or sprouts(optional)

1.  Make the stock.  Bring to boil, skim scum, simmer for 2-3 hours.  Strain stock, reserve meat.

2. Make the soup.  Saute onion, garlic and spices until onion soft.  Add bean paste and combine, blend in bean paste, soy sauce, sugar and tomato.  Continue to saute for a minute or so before adding stock and meat.  Simmer for an hour or so.  Serve over fresh or dried wheat noodles.  Garnish with chopped scallion, cilantro and or basil (to garnish)

NOTES:
*Instead of blanched beef, you can add thin sliced marinated beef and add to broth at end of cooking.
1 pinch salt
1 tsp Shaoxing rice wine
1 tsp dark soy sauce, or regular soy sauce
1 egg
1 tbsp cornstarch
2 tbsp water
1 tsp sesame oil
*While soup is simmering, you can be creative with your spices.  Anise is common in asian beef based broths, but you can add cinnamon, dried tangerine or orange peel. 

Saturday, October 18, 2014

The Barack Obola Epidemic

 

obolaEbola has found its way to United States soil for the first time in history and it has captured the attention of Americans who are asking reasonable questions regarding the current administration's handling of the crisis.

  • Why were confirmed Ebola cases brought IN TO the United States for the first time in history...leading of course, to the first Ebola case contracted IN the United States?

  • Why wont Obama ban travel to and from nations dealing with Ebola outbreaks?

  • Why has the CDC been so incompetent and innaccurate in setting protocol for dealing with active and potential cases?

  • Why is the Obama sending the NATIONAL GUARD to a FOREIGN country to deal with MEDICAL concerns?


Sometimes, when it comes to politics, things make sense when you start following the $MONEY TRAIL$.

Before we start exploring the money trail, let's plant a thought that you carry through the rest of this article.   Great publicity has been given to the innovative drugs used in experimental treatment of the Ebola patients here in the United States, but the majority of the reporting fails to disclose one extremely important factor in the recovery of these patients...almost ALL of the patients that recovered with drug therapy ALSO received blood transfusions from previous Ebola survivors who have the antibodies in their blood.  Such transfusions are a well documented, highly successful and INEXPENSIVE form of treatment for Ebola.   As an inexpensive, viable form of treatment, isn't it fair to ask why the CDC doesn't promote a blood bank database with donor lists, patient matching, blood collection facilities, etc.?

Hold that thought.

Now let's consider possibly the greatest high risk/high reward industry in the world...biotech. The investment potential in these industries is extremely volatile and in many cases richly rewarding...especially when companies endeavor to produce life-saving drugs, medicines, treatments, etc.  Given the recent Ebola outbreak, it only makes sense that there would be great interest in developing Ebola vaccines.

Let's look at some of the players in the developing Ebola vaccine field.

  • Given the recent news, the most notable company may be Mapp Biopharmaceutical, Inc. which produces the experimental drug ZMAPP. ZMAPP, currently made using tobacco plants which can be induced to grow antibodies in the drug, has been highly publicized due to the successful recovery of victims brought to the United States for treatment. When supplies ran out in August, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation gave $150,000 to ZMAPP to determine if mass production is feasible.

  • Amgen, Inc. has also announced it is working with the Gates Foundation to research alternative production using hamster cells and existing manufacturing systems.

  • Tekmira Pharmaceuticals Corporation , a leading developer of RNA interference (RNAi) therapeutics, is developing the drug, "TKM-Ebola" under a $140 million contract with the U.S. Department of Defense’s Medical Countermeasure Systems BioDefense Therapeutics Joint Product Management Office. Tekmira Pharmaceuticals Corporation recently received a $1.5 million investment from Monsanto.

  • Crucell has been developing an Ebola vaccine for years and in 2006 started the first clinical trials with two groups of 16 volunteers. In 2008, the National Institute of Health and the National Institute of Allergy & Infectious Disease granted awards up $70 million.


Oh...and this sure is interesting!  The Canadian Patents Database records Patent Application #CA2741523 in which the owners are recorded as:
"THE GOVERNMENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA AS REPRESENTED BY THE SECRETARY, DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH & HUMAN SERVICES, CENTER FOR DISEASE CONTROL AND PREVENTION".
What is the patent for?
"HUMAN EBOLA VIRUS SPECIES AND COMPOSITIONS AND METHODS THEREOF"
http://brevets-patents.ic.gc.ca/opic-cipo/cpd/eng/patent/2741523/summary.html

There's also lots of money to be made in other industries....just imagine the slush fund of American tax revenues just waiting to be doled out to various campaign donors humanitarian support operations....with the full support of compassionate Americans.  Just look at what's already in the government pipeline!

  • COMMITTED GOVERNMENT FUNDS
    $88 million to develop medical countermeasures
    $66 million for security & laboratory surveillance, logistics and relief commodities and disease detection activities
    $10 million for community health workers
    $20 million to expand laboratory capacity
    $22 million for field hospitals
    $2 million for personal protective equipment

  • PENDING FUNDS ALREADY APPROVED BY CONGRESS
    $58 million to accelerate production and development of antiviral drugs and vaccines
    $30 million for CDC personnel, equipment and supplies
    $10 million grant by U.S. Agency for International Development to the African Union to train and equip more than 100 medical workers for West Africa
    $75 million in additional, unspecified Ebola funds

  • ADDITIONAL FUNDS REQUESTED
    $1.06 billion transfer request by Defense Dept from current war operations budget to support the Ebola mission


Now its starting to make sense. There's a LOT of money to be made in the Ebola vaccine business...especially if it were to 'tragically' and 'unpredictably' spread to larger regions. There's also a lot of testing to do and likely aren't many healthy American volunteers willing to contract Ebola so these companies can run a trial on their experimental vaccines...so hey...bring in the confirmed Ebola cases!

 

UPDATE:

The appointment of Ron Klain as Obama's new 'Ebola Czar' has raised eyebrows given that he has no experience/training in medicine or healthcare, but these concerns are being waived away by an administration insisting he was hired for his expertise in managing large scale projects.

Klain's management/advisory expertise?

  • Served under Attorney General Janet Reno in the Clinton administration

  • Served as chief of staff for Vice President Al Gore and was a key figure during the 2000 Florida presidential election recount

  • Served as Joe Biden's Chief of Staff, playing a key role in advising the Obama administration on the prospects of an Energy Department loan and PR visit to Solyndra. (Auditors cautioned the administration on the solvency of the company and Klain was among those who simply dismissed the risk as typical of innovative companies. When Solyndra eventually collapsed along with our  taxpayer money, investigators revealed numerous connections between investors, lobbyists and campaign donors.)


Klain is a good old boy lawyer and faithful Democratic operative appointed to conduct the money train.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Caesar Salad Dressing (Outback Steakhouse Ripoff)

I woCAESARrked as a prep/line cook at the Outback Steakhouse for 5 years in my twenties.  It wasn't the greatest career path, but I can't put a price on the fact that I hijacked their recipes for my personal enjoyment!

When I worked there as a prep cook in the early 90's, Outback was very strict about adhering to THEIR recipe and one of those trademark recipes was the BOLD Caesar salad which had a VERY AGGRESSIVE flavor profile due to the copious amounts of garlic and anchovy.

Long after I left Outback, I would frequent the restaurant and ALWAYS order that kick ass Caesar salad.  Once or twice I ordered a salad that just didn't punch me in the mouth and slap my taste buds, but I shrugged it off as an off day for the prep crew.  After a few more disappointing experiences, I began to take offense at the idea that one of life's simple pleasures was being stolen from me.  One day, I found this offense too great to bear any longer so I asked a manager about the relatively bland dressing only to have my salty, savory soul torn from me forever. He confirmed that Outback scaled back the recipe because many guests found it overwhelming. Oh the rage of that day...

For those who recall and share my affinity for the classic, here it is.  For the rest of you pansies ;-), I would recommend you start with the smaller amounts of garlic and anchovies. You can always add more and run the blender again...

INGREDIENTS:
1.5 cups olive oil
3 large eggs
2-3 TB red wine vinegar
1 1/4 C freshly grated parmesan
3-4 TB cup chopped garlic
2 TB fresh parsley
1 TB Worcestershire sauce
1 TB lemon juice
1 TB dry mustard
1 TB black pepper
1-2 oz anchovies

DIRECTIONS:
OK...pay attention. Im only gonna give the instructions once.
Put all ingredients in blender and pulse for 30-60 seconds.
Really, that's it.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Zimmerman Not Guilty-what about America?

As the American public reacts to the Zimmerman ruling, I can't help but notice that the most vociferous statements of moral outrage are those most out of touch with the hard, cold facts in the case.

The prosecution and defense both agreed on 6 jurors that they believed could make a fair ruling.  Those jurors sat through evidence and testimony far greater than anything we'll ever see and took a burden far greater than we could imagine.  Despite this, many are expressing outrage over that ruling, choosing instead to place their convictions in a shallow, corrupt media version of the events which pits "Skittles & Iced-Tea Trayvon" vs. "Racist Orange Jump-Suit Vigilante Zimmerman".

The highlight of this trial may have been the disgraceful unprecedented stream of media propaganda such as:

  • -911 taped fabricated to give false impressions of Zimmerman's call while ignoring Trayvon's 'creepy cracker' comments.

  • -Scrutinizing Zimmerman's character/motives while ignoring Trayvon's history of suspensions due to possession of drug paraphernalia, graffiti,  possession of a 'burglary tool' and a bag of women's jewelry.

  • -The constant presentation of 12 year old baby faced Trayvon vs the unshaven, orange jail jump suit pics of Zimmerman.

  • -Ignoring the pics/tweets from Trayvons account which show a young man much different than the cute 12 year old.

  • -Projecting the racist image while ignoring Zimmerman's Peruvian heritage and charitable work with minorities.

  • -The repeated talking point of Zimmerman leaving his car, while neglecting testimony that Trayvon circled his car.

  • -Failing to explore/elaborate on the 4 minute span between first contact and the struggle?  Why didn't Trayvon run?

  • -Failing to report on the first exchange between Trayvon and Zimmerman...including alleged threats and first attack by Trayvon.

  • -President Obama's inappropriate commentary & Atty General Corey's overzealous/incompetent reach for murder 2.


None of this means that Trayvon deserved to die.  It's a tragedy that a young boy passed so soon and his parents will miss so much of what his life may have been...but that doesn't excuse the fact that so many otherwise intelligent Americans have suspended their intellect and discernment to wallow in the muck of emotional propaganda.

I can understand the initial outrage of black Americans as we live in a culture where race pimps and politicians constantly pit white against black, rich against poor, etc.  But at some point we have to wake up and be clear headed.
What about the rest of us?
Is it white guilt?
Is is prejudice against whites/hispanics?
Is it the thrill of some real life CSI case?
Are Americans now so effectively dumbed down by television, video games, I-pads that they are simply incapable of comprehending the legal process?
Or are we so morally bankrupt that we now favor wrath and vengeance over the rule of law?

I know I can't possibly be the only clearheaded observer. Maybe people just don't care as much as they pretend to...or maybe they're scared of saying the wrong thing...but it seems pretty clear to me.

George Zimmerman was a fallable human being who made some unwise decisions on the fateful night he crossed paths with young Trayon Martin...also a fallable human being who made poor decisions that night.
It's possible that Zimmerman WAS an over zealous 'neighborhood watchman'.
It's possible that Trayvon was an overzealous young boy eager to be a man.

Bottom line is that only George Zimmerman knows all the details and there are no witnesses until the point where Trayvon was on top of Zimmerman, beating him.  Many are rightly unsatisfied with so many unknowns when a young man is shot to death.

But America is not a country which allows us to substitute conjecture for PROOF when we determine the fate of those involved.  There was no evidence that Zimmerman had a "depraved mind".  Nor was it clear that he recklessly intended to kill Trayvon.

George Zimmerman's fate aside, God help us if we ever set a precedent which abolishes the standards of "Innocent Until Proven Guilty" and "Guilty Beyond Reasonable Doubt" for the sake of maiing an example of someone or for the sake of righting some wrong...there are already too many innocent people in prison.

At times, I admittedly had my doubts about the jurors upholding this standard of justice in the face of so much public pressure, but am relieved and proud that they upheld the letter of the law.

May Trayvon rest in peace, may his parents find some solace and may God handle it from here.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Guns, Celebrity & Tragedy

Bob Costas has been a media icon for decades; loved for his affable personality, armchair storytelling and insightful sports commentary.   So it's unfortunate that one day after Kansas City Chief Jovan Belcher murdered his girlfriend and killed himself, Costas took the opportunity to pontificate to the masses on the virtues of gun control during the halftime show of Sunday Night Football.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

My Interview with President Obama

Mr. President, Americans today face a new world of social, economic and diplomatic challenges and as we approach the 2012 elections, they look to the President for leadership.  Thank you for joining us this evening to talk to America about your prospects as leader of our great nation.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

America's Next War...

The American war machine is an indispensable product of an economy built upon debt and fiat currency. American resolve for the Iraq and Afghanistan wars has long dissipated, so despite the blood and treasure poured into the Middle East, and although the region may be more unstable than before, American military presence is winding down considerably.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Lies, Liaisons or Lynching?

The Herman Cain drama is a tough call.   I don't care about the politics so much because I don't believe Cain has a viable shot at a Presidential run.  For me, this is more an issue regarding principle...in our politicians and our media.  If these allegations are true, Cain should be condemned for those incidents as well as for staining the election process and should bear any and all consequences for his behavior.   On the other hand, in the world of politics, it is well known that if you repeat a lie often enough, people will believe it.  If this turns out to be a witch hunt driven by political motives, there should be criminal consequences for those involved.

ZHA CAI ROUSI MIAN (Pork & Noodle Soup)

4-6 ounces pork shoulder or pork loin (cut into thin strips) 1 teaspoon cornstarch 1 teaspoon vegetable oil 1 teaspoon Shaoxing wine 1 teasp...