Chinese Recipe Cookware Substitutions So, you have got a great Chinese recipe you want to try out but you realize you are not prepared at all for the demands of Chinese cooking. Well, there are many ways you can recreate what you should have with what you might have on hand. This goes for cookware as well as actual food ingredients. An important part of cooking any Chinese recipe to perfection is to use the right cookware. Many people don't own a wok or rice cooker however and will have to use what they have in the kitchen. A normal frying pan can work as a wok but it's best to use a very deep frying pan that is at least 1 and a half inches deep. Woks rely on oil and high heat to cook meat and vegetables and if you use a shallow pan, grease will get all over and might even spill out and start on fire. That's no good at all. For rice, a normal saucepan will work but you need to make sure you have a tight fitting lid. Tin foil over the top will work in an emergency but can burn you and is not recommended. Many Chinese recipes call for a meat or seafood to be breaded and deep fried. Without a deep fryer, you are going to have a mess no matter what. The deepest cooking pot or saucepan you have will work but will probably splash all over no matter how you try to contain it. These are basic solutions but having the proper equipment can really make a difference. An electric wok is very easy to clean and can also be used to deep fry. A rice cooker really isn't necessary unless you truly can't cook rice. Buy what you need and have fun with your new recipes.
Chinese Recipe Tips Chinese recipes usually call for very specific ingredients and ways to cook everything. There are many tips you can use to save time and money and still have a top notch meal or add ingredients to make a good meal great. You can cut corners on rice, kinds of oil, even the kind of meats you use. Many people take the meat out of a recipe and call it vegetarian. A delicious alternative to regular cooking oil is sesame oil. Just a few drops mixed with your normal oil or used by itself, sesame oil makes any dish have a very unique flavor. Shrimp cooked in vegetable oil tastes like greasy shrimp but shrimp cooked in sesame oil taste like a Chinese treat. Sesame oil has a strong and unique flavor that many people automatically associate with Chinese food. It is higher in fat so if you are on a diet, it might not be a good choice. Rice is common in all kinds of Chinese recipes. If you make a lot of Chinese food, you can cook a lot more rice than you know you will use. You can freeze this excess rice and use it later on for fried rice. This will save you the trouble of cooking a whole new batch and it tastes just as good. Don't be afraid to change recipes. If you have a great recipe for chicken, try using crab or shrimp next time or changing some vegetables around. You might have just created your own unique recipe! This can be a lot of fun and the more familiar with Chinese recipes you get, the better your creations will be.
Chinese Recipes Chinese recipes for cooking are some of the most interesting and delicious types you can find. From your standard stir fry to more exotic dishes with shrimp or duck, Chinese recipes are sure to be a big hit at your dinner table or any type of get together. There are thousands of Chinese recipes out there you can find in cookbooks, on television, or on the Internet. Chinese recipes are often handed down throughout the generations and some have origins that date back thousands of years. Granted, there wasn't near the technology we have today with electric woks, rice cookers, and deep fryers but the recipes remain unchanged. Chinese recipes have a very rich history and cultural heritage but many were created by the lower class who worked very hard and needed to have a good meal. This is why so many Chinese recipes revolve around China's main food staple. Rice. Rice is a very important part of Chinese recipes. Not just for it's filling properties but because the climate in China is perfect for rice. It grows fairly fast and has a high yield making it the perfect food to accompany a meat or seafood dish. By adding rice, a meal for two can easily become a meal for five. This is accomplished in the same way by using another staple of Chinese food which is noodles. Chinese recipes vary from being easy to taking hours upon hours to prepare. If you are not used to Chinese cooking, you may need to buy some new cookware that is suitable for what you will be making. A wok is very handy for stir fry and deep fried dishes and is a lot less messy than your standard frying pan. With a little trial and error, you can make many different Chinese recipes a fun new addition to your menu.
Good Chinese Recipes for Beginners Choosing a good Chinese recipe can be hard if you have never prepared much Chinese food in the past. With ingredients you may not be used to and cooking styles you are unfamiliar with, it might seem a little scary when looking through recipes. It's best to start with something easy and fun unless you are an experienced cook or you know exactly what you want. If you absolutely love pot stickers, you might try making those. For most people, the best Chinese recipes to start with are single course dishes. The easiest are usually rice, a few vegetables and one kind of meat. If you get more complex than that, you might have too much going on at once and it can feel overwhelming. It's very easy to start some rice and cook your meal while the rice is cooking. Rice usually takes about 20 minutes and it should take about that long to cut some meat and vegetables and get them cooking. Stir fry is the easiest thing to cook. It's basically meat and vegetables seared over high heat while stirring constantly. When choosing a Chinese recipe, you should keep in mind how many people you are going to feed. If it's just a meal for one or two, you can get a little fancier and try a couple different types of sauce. If you are feeding kids, you can't go wrong with something familiar like sweet and sour chicken. If you try to serve up a bunch of Chinese bean pancakes, the kids might protest. It's always best to start small and try something familiar.
Chinese Rice Recipes Rice has always been a traditional part of Chinese life. It's cheap, filling, tastes great, and can be used in many different ways. Everyone has had steamed rice and fried rice and those two very simple dishes are a great addition to many different meals. More popular in the warmer Southern China, rice is grown all over the place and it has been for thousands of years. If you have a Chinese rice recipe that sounds great, just take your time and learn to cook rice first. Many people think rice is simple to cook and very hard to mess up. That couldn't be farther from the truth. Rice can be completely ruined in many ways. There could be too much water, too little water, it can be overcooked, undercooked, and burnt. Anyone who has had restaurant quality rice and then tried to recreate it has learned this lesson. Chinese recipes usually call for a specific type of rice that is cooked a certain way. If you think your jasmine rice will taste just as good a little crunchy, you are very wrong. Improperly cooked rice can annihilate even the most delicious Chinese recipe and the reaction from friends and family might turn you off from cooking Chinese food for a long time. The easiest way to cook rice is with a rice cooker. These are fairly cheap and automatically shut off when the rice is finished. You can never mess your rice up again as long as you follow the directions of the machine and the rice itself. By adding perfect rice to accompany a great Chinese recipe, you will have a much better reaction from everyone who eats it.
Chinese Noodle Recipes Chinese noodle recipes can be very fun to make and the entire family can get involved. Many Chinese noodle recipes call for fresh homemade noodles. These are very easy to make. They usually use wheat or rice flour mixed with water and maybe some egg or milk (depending on the recipe) and then they get rolled out and cut. Of course, before you start on a recipe that calls for these types of noodles, you might want a recipe for the noodles themselves. These are in most cookbooks and all over the Internet. You should be able to find the perfect one in just minutes. In addition to rice, noodles are very important to Chinese culture and are a part of many different types of Chinese recipe. From very easy dishes that are just noodles, meat, vegetables and sauce to complex dishes that use very specific types of noodles, they are usually delicious. Noodles are typically boiled after they are made. Sometimes, a recipe might call for them to be fried in some kind of oil until they are crispy. Chinese noodles cook a lot faster than Italian pasta because the ingredients are different and the shapes vary greatly. The boiled noodles can be used in soups, stir fry, with a hearty sauce, or almost anything. Noodles can also be substituted for rice in many different dishes. You can always buy noodles from the store or an Asian market for your cooking and this decreases the time you will spend in the kitchen and is a lot less mess. For families with kids, making the noodles from scratch can be a fun bonding experience and might help get your kids interested in all types of cooking.
Chinese Vegetable Recipes Chinese vegetable recipes are very popular these days because everyone is always on a diet. With the right recipes on hand, you could easily drop a few pounds a month by eating delicious Chinese food a couple times a week. Many people immediately think of things like bamboo shoots, water chestnuts, and bok choy. While these are common Chinese vegetables, not that many recipes use them. They are just usually prepackaged in the frozen food section with anything that says Chinese on it. There are many more vegetables you can use to give your recipes a distinctly Chinese flavor. Chinese cabbage is one of the best tasting and useful vegetables you can buy. It's not as tangy or large as normal cabbage and has a great flavor. You can use this in salads, soups and stir fry to add a more authentic Chinese taste and look to your food or improve any standard Chinese recipe. It doesn't hold up well under high heat so it should always be added last. A great way to make your Chinese recipe really special is to add a handful of fresh snow pea pods. These are very sweet and are commonly found in soups like won ton. They can really add something special to any stir fry and go great with seafood. Every grocery store has a section that will have some Chinese vegetables. If you like the taste of ginger, it can be used to spice up almost any recipe you have. It can be overpowering though. You will also see many things that look like leeks and green onions. If you don't know what they are, it doesn't hurt to buy some, take it home and find a recipe for it. You might find a new favorite vegetable!
Where to Find Chinese Recipes Finding Chinese recipes is usually pretty easy. Chinese food is loved all around the world and many people are more than willing to pass on their favorite recipes. These can be in cookbooks, on television shows, and on the Internet. If you are new to Chinese cooking, you might want to try out a few free recipes before spending any money on a new book though. For a beginner who really wants to learn the basics of Chinese cooking and find some great and easy recipes, nothing can beat the Internet. There are tons of websites out there that have nothing but recipes for all kinds of cuisine. Many are specially geared toward Chinese food. Some might make you register with the site but most give you recipes for free. You can print them out or save them for when you are ready to start cooking. Television is a great way to learn about Chinese recipes and what it takes to make them. The food networks get a lot of ratings with Chinese cooking shows and competitions. The food is interesting to watch being made and always looks delicious. It can be hard to write down a recipe while watching someone cook it so a digital recorder can help make sure you don't miss anything. The old fashioned way is sometimes the best way. A nice Chinese recipe cookbook can't be beat most of the time. If you get a very large one, you can pick and choose from any Chinese dish you can imagine. They often include common substitutions and cooking tips as well as helpful advice for the beginner.
Types of Chinese Recipes Chinese recipes come in thousands of different varieties. Everyone has their favorite dish but every restaurant you go to will have a different recipe for it. This can be a pain if you are trying to recreate it and you might have to try a couple different times to get it just right. The best recipes have been handed down through family lines and it may be hard to get them without shelling out some cash for a cookbook. The standard types of Chinese recipes are rice, noodle, meat, seafood, and vegetable. There are also recipes that belong to the many different regions of China. Your Lo Mein in Beijing might taste nothing like your Lo Mein in Shanghai. Regions play a very important role in different Chinese recipes. Many restaurants incorporate the various regions into their menu so you can get a feel for what is popular all over the different areas of China. The Northern regions use more wheat and noodles as opposed to the Southern regions which use a lot of rice and rice flour in their dishes. China is a huge country so the climate in the North is much different than the South. Spices play a key role in many types of Chinese recipes as well. A familiar spicy dish is the famous Kung Pao. Used with shrimp or chicken usually, this type of recipe is made with pepper sauce and the level of heat can vary. Even with the regions and spices involved, Chinese recipes still usually are rice or noodle based and have a meat and vegetable accompanying or mixed with it. Soups and pancakes are an exception and are great recipes to try out.
Fun Chinese Recipes for Kids There are a lot of Chinese recipes out there that are not only familiar but very fun to make. From egg rolls to won tons, not only are they delicious but you can get the entire family involved in the cooking process. Kids love to make egg rolls and won tons and enjoy having the freedom to put their own ingredients inside. A fun way to change around your typical egg roll recipe is to let your family decide what goes into them. You can use anything from cheddar cheese and ham to peanut butter and jelly. The fun part is the rolling. It's a great family experience to sit together and create something. Even if it doesn't turn out perfect, it's the effort that makes it great. Won tons are basically smaller and differently shaped egg rolls and are a lot of fun to make too. Even a 4 year old can make a won ton so families of all ages can do this together. Traditionally, won tons have ground pork, onions, and special Chinese vegetables and seasoning but just like egg rolls, you can mix it up a little. Some cream cheese or frosting inside and some cinnamon and sugar can make for an interesting treat that everyone will like. For older kids, you can teach them to make almost anything if they are willing. They can help chop vegetables, learn to cook rice, or even make a stir fry with little help. It can be very rewarding to have your family help in the kitchen and it might even become a hobby or career for them one day.