Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Iron Chef vs Tigerfish in Lychee cook-off

I have watched quite some episodes of Iron Chef America and everytime I do, I will laugh at the Chairman(portrayed by Mark Dacascos). That must be the easiest job of a Chairman you can find. Every episode without fail, the Chairman of Iron Chef America just makes the same statement (his script must be less than a page long, to be more accurate- maybe less than ten sentences in the entire one-hour show)

In the words of this Chairman..."MAY THE BATTLE BEGINS!"

Iron Chef and challenger - Tigerfish look, as the secret ingredient is unveiled, and the Chairman continues..."the secret ingredient is... LYCHEE!"

The verdict is out even without the panel of judges. How can Tigerfish with no professional experience surpass the Iron Chef? Moreoever, Tigerfish only does 2 dishes, out of the 5 dishes which is required of the competition. Hey, but Tigerfish is alone in the battle. No sous chef, no assistant.

Dish No.1 - Lychee cocktail drink
Can you see there's actually a lychee in an ice-cube ?

Place a lychee in each compartment of ice-cube tray, and fill with water, as if freezing, to get ice-cubes. Once frozen, drop 1-2 cubes in one serving of drinking water, there...you have a party drink. As the ice-cube melts, a wee bit of lychee juice blends with water, PLUS, you can eat that lychee when you finish off your drink! Cool. That's my style of non-alcoholic cocktail for everybody. Definitely a good chill-off during summer (though still some months away).

Dish No.2 - Lychee chicken
If you like Sweet and Sour Pork, or Orange/Lemon Peel Chicken, then you should love this dish as well, since it's both sweet and tangy.

Lychee chicken(serves ~4)
-~1.5lbs chicken thigh (you can use chicken breasts,leg fillets, wings), cut to bite-size pieces
-2tbsp soy sauce
-1tbsp salt
-1tsp sesame oil
-1tsp sugar
-4tbsp corn flour to coat chicken
-2cups oil for deep frying
-1tsp chopped garlic
-1tsp crushed ginger
-1can lychee, drained, syrup reserved
-1tsp red chilli flakes
-sliced spring onion and red chilli (for garnish)

-1 cup lychee syrup
-2tbsps tomato sauce
-1tbsp corn flour, mixed with 1tbsp water

1.Marinate chicken with soy sauce, salt, sesame oil and sugar for 30 mins. Roll chicken in corn flour and deep-fry till golden brown.Set aside.
2. In another pan, heat 1tbsp oil over medium fire. Stir fry garlic and ginger for 1-2mins. Add sauce ingredients, and cook till sauce thickens.
3.Add the chicken, lychees and chillies. Mix well, and allow simmer for 3-5mins.
4.Garnish and serve.

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