Sunday, 27 July 2008

For Sher, What Did You Eat?

This week has been an emotional one for the online cooking/writing community. There have been a couple of events that have left us feeling like one homogeneous organism rather than individual writers spread out all over the world. Most painful was the loss of one of our own, Sher from What Did You Eat?

Sher and I were more acquaintances than friends as I have only been part of this community for a few short months. We took part in a few cooking and baking challenges together and exchanged kind, supportive feedback. I had been following her posts recently on facing anemia as my daughter also suffers from it.

This vivacious lady, who I did not know as well as I now wish I did, has brought tears to my eyes, entered my dreams and remains in my heart.

It is through Weekend Herb Blogging and Bread Baking Babes that it was decided that today's post will be a memorial to Sher and what we cook will come from her website.

I have chosen the Ginger Chicken and have posted it here exactly as she had it written.

Ginger Chicken For The Accident Prone Personality

From Sher’s top 10 recipes of 2006
Ginger Chicken (Food & Wine)

Note: If the amount of the ginger seems excessive, add half of it, as the recipe describes, as the dish is cooking. Then add half of the remaining ginger just before your serve it. Taste to see if you would like more ginger. If you do, add the rest of the ginger.

2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons sugar
1/3 cup plus 1/4 cup hot water
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 Thai red chiles, chopped, or 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 garlic clove, minced
One 4-inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled and cut into slivers
1 pound skinless, boneless chicken thighs, cut into 3-by-1-inch pieces
1 1/2 tablespoons Asian fish sauce
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 small onion, cut into thin wedges 2 scallions, cut into 2-inch lengths
6 cilantro sprigs, cut into 1-inch lengths

1. In a small heavy saucepan, cook 2 tablespoons of the sugar over moderate heat until bubbling and beginning to brown around the edges, 4 minutes. Gradually stir in 1/3 cup of the hot water and simmer for 3 minutes to dissolve the caramel. Remove from the heat.
2. Heat the oil in a casserole. Add the chiles, garlic and half of the ginger and stir-fry over moderate heat until fragrant, about 20 seconds. Add the chicken, fish sauce, salt and the remaining 2 teaspoons of sugar and stir until the chicken turns white, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the onion wedges, the remaining 1/4 cup of hot water and the caramel sauce and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce the heat to low and simmer until the chicken is cooked through and the sauce is slightly thickened, about 8 minutes. Add the scallions and cook for 3 minutes longer. Stir in the remaining ginger and remove the pot from the heat. Garnish with the cilantro and serve.

Sher had posted this as a favourite comfort meal in a meme from after she had taken a tumble on her kitchen tiles. We could all use a little comfort.

As Sher was a cat lover, I have included a picture of Persephone. A black cat that we rescued about 12 years ago and who considers the finished basement her own apartment as it is blessedly free of puppies.

I wish love and peace to all of her family and friends.