Hip to dip

Sticky-licky bowlfuls with Asian accents and street-food cred…

Recipes and photographs below by Alastair Hendy. Visit Alastair’s online store at aghendy.com.

Hip to dip recipe

Sticky chilli fish with crispy noodles

SERVES 4

Ingredients 

vegetable oil for frying
100g rice vermicelli
sea salt and black pepper
600g skinless sustainable white fish fillet cut into 8 pieces
cornflour for dusting

SAUCE

4 tbsp Thai sweet chilli sauce
1 tbsp fish sauce
1 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp rice vinegar or ½ tbsp white wine vinegar

TO SERVE 

fragrant herb leaves (such as mint, coriander and Thai basil)
roughly crushed toasted peanuts

Method

1 Heat a wok one third full of oil until hot, then add the rice vermicelli, which will expand fast and crackle, and be cooked to a crisp in seconds. Quickly scoop out and drain on kitchen paper.

2 Lightly season the fish pieces and dust them in cornflour.

3 Mix together the sauce ingredients and have ready.

4 Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large frying pan and fry the fish for about 2 minutes on each side or until lightly crisped and done to your liking. Add the sauce and let it bubble up around the fish for a few seconds, taking care that it doesn’t burn (remove the pan from the heat if it’s very hot).

5 Serve the fish and its sauce with the crispy noodles piled on top.

6 Finish with a scattering of herbs and crushed toasted peanuts and, if wished, offer the following side (or other crisp salad of your choice).

Crunchy Kohlrabi 

Make a dressing by combining
2 crushed garlic cloves
1 sliced bird’s eye chilli
2 tbsp golden caster sugar
5 tbsp lime juice
3 tbsp fish sauce.

Trim and finely shred a medium kohlrabi and a large deseeded red chilli. Combine with the dressing and serve with the chilli fish and crispy noodles.

Hip to dip recipe

Red-braised belly pork with melting soy onions

SERVES 4

Ingredients

500g belly pork in one piece with skin

sea salt and black pepper

vegetable oil for frying

4 red onions peeled and quartered

6 star anise

6 tbsp soy sauce

3 tbsp

Chinese rice wine

2 tbsp rice vinegar or white wine vinegar

TO SERVE

cooked Thai jasmine rice

Thai basil leaves

coriander leaves

micro leaves

Method

1 Heat the oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6. With a sharp knife, make several deep slashes in the pork skin. Place the pork skin-side up in a colander set over the sink and pour a kettle full of boiling water over the top. Drain and dry. Rub the skin with salt, pushing it into all the slashes down to the fat. Season with pepper.

2 Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a shallow casserole and fry the pork skin-side down until browned and seared, then lightly brown the other sides until coloured all over (taking care as the joint is liable to spit). Remove from the heat and turn the pork skin-side up.

3. Tuck the onion quarters around the pork. Add the star anise, soy sauce, rice wine and vinegar, then water so that the meat is about a third submerged. Place the pan in the oven and leave to braise, uncovered, for 1½ hours, adding a splash more water and soy if it gets too dry.

4 Serve the pork with its onions and soy cooking juices, cooked rice on the side, a scattering of herbs and micro leaves and, if wished, the following easy pickled radish.

 

EXTRA PICKLE

In a small pan bring to the boil 200ml water, 100ml rice vinegar (or white wine vinegar) and 1 teaspoon salt.  Remove from the heat. Shred or slice and add 1 x 10cm white radish (mooli). Leave to cool for the flavours to mingle. Red-braised belly pork with melting soy onions.

Hip to dip receipe

Takeaway duck with noodles & sizzling chilli

SERVES 4

Ingredients

½ crisp Chinese or Peking roast duck (from your local restaurant or takeaway, or occasionally from good supermarkets)

BROTH

1 litre water

3 star anise

1 small stick cinnamon

4cm piece ginger sliced

2 large spring onions sliced into small sections

2 tbsp fish sauce

1 tsp sugar

TO FINISH

8 fresh shiitake mushrooms

300g Chinese greens of your choice sliced if necessary

2 large spring onions sliced into small sections

2 tbsp sesame oil

4 dried long red chillies roughly chopped

4 long red chillies roughly chopped

TO SERVE

250g flat rice noodles (rice sticks) cooked according to packet instructions chopped coriander

Method

1 Cut the duck into small chunks, reserving the bones. Place the broth ingredients in a pan with the bones, bring to a bubble, skim, then simmer very gently, covered, for 45 minutes. Strain into a clean pan, discarding bones and flavouring ingredients.

2 Slice and add the mushrooms to the broth and gently simmer for about 5 minutes, then add the greens, spring onions and chopped duck. Continue to simmer for about 3 minutes or until heated through.

3 At the same time, in a separate pan heat the sesame oil with the dried and fresh chillies until very hot and sizzling.

4 Divide the cooked noodles among 4 serving bowls, then ladle over the hot broth, duck, greens and mushrooms.

5 Spoon in a little sizzling chilli to taste, and its oil, and top with chopped coriander.

Hip to dip receipe

Spicy chicken nuggets with ginger, lime & pepper dipping sauce

SERVES 4

DIPPING SAUCE

3 cloves garlic crushed

5cm piece ginger very finely chopped or grated

2 red chillies deseeded and finely sliced

3 tbsp golden caster sugar 8 tbsp lime juice

4½ tbsp fish sauce

3 tsp roughly crushed black pepper

NUGGETS

4 skinless chicken breasts cut into bite-sized pieces

1 tbsp golden caster sugar

vegetable oil for frying

SALAD

½ large or 1 small green (or unripe) papaya peeled and finely shredded handful mint leaves

handful Thai basil leaves

TO FINISH

cucumber slices and lettuce leaves to serve

 

Method

1 Combine the dipping sauce ingredients, stir until the sugar has fully dissolved and set aside. Tumble the chicken with 2 tablespoons of the dipping sauce and the sugar. Leave to marinate for about 30 minutes.

2 Toss the salad ingredients with 2 tablespoons of the dipping sauce.

3 Heat a shallow pool of oil in a wok. Fry the chicken nuggets in batches, until cooked through and to your liking, draining each batch on kitchen paper. Add any leftover marinade to the wok to bubble for 2 minutes, then pour over the chicken. Serve with the papaya salad and the remaining dipping sauce with cucumber and lettuce alongside.

ADDED AROMATICS

If you can source fresh green peppercorns, crush and add a few to the dipping sauce and use a sprig or two to decorate the finished dish.

Hip to dip receipe

Blackened salmon ramen with sweet chilli dressing

SERVES 4

Ingredients 

600g thick skinless salmon fillet

salt and black pepper

5 tbsp bottled teriyaki marinade

DRESSING

1 tbsp black vinegar or wine vinegar

2 tbsp sweet chilli sauce

3 tbsp fish sauce

2cm piece ginger finely grated

TO FINISH

1 litre chicken stock (or stock made with instant dashi stock powder)

4 spring onions oil for cooking the salmon

 

TO SERVE

300g-350g ramen noodles cooked according to packet instructions

Method

1 Rub the salmon with a little seasoning, place in a sandwich bag, pour in the teriyaki marinade and rub to coat the salmon. Set aside for about an houMix together the dressing ingredients and set aside.

2 Pour the stock into a pan and bring to a simmer.

3 Finely shred the green part of the spring onions and set aside. Cut the white part into short lengths, add to the stock and leave to gently bubble while you cook the salmon.

4 Heat a nonstick frying pan on the hob until hot.

5 Remove the salmon from the marinade and rub with a little oil. Place the salmon in the hot frying pan and sear for about 2 minutes each side, adding a tablespoon of the marinade towards the end for extra caramelisation. The salmon will be rare in the middle but, if wished, continue cooking for a couple of minutes more until done to your liking, taking care not to move the salmon about in the pan.

6 Divide the cooked noodles among 4 bowls and ladle over the stock. Flake the salmon and arrange on top. Drizzle over the reserved dressing and scatter over the reserved spring onion tops.

FINISHING TOUCHES

Add a sprinkle of toasted sesame seeds, a handful of baby bok choi or spinach and, if wished, half a soft-boiled egg to each bowl.