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Any ideas on what this could be?

 
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TX_Rain



Joined: 25 Jan 2008
Posts: 5
Location: Athens Texas

PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2008 4:43 am    Post subject: Any ideas on what this could be? Reply with quote

Hi there, I'm new, great place you have here!
I have a question about a dish that I would like to make, but have no idea where to start, I don't know the name, the origin, or how to make it. Sounds bleak, doesn't it?!
Here's what I know: (please forgive my lack of knowledge of the cooking lingo!)
-It is a 'liquid' base, medium brown in color, kind of like the sauce from 'Beef and Broccoli"
-It has: Broccoli, Onions, Baby Corn, Shrimp, and maybe another meat? Like Chicken.... maybe?

It reminds me of a Chinese dish, simliar to Beef & Broccoli, but different. Not sure if it's Chinese or not.

I'm sorry for the lack of details, it was a dish a friend used to make, and I don't know if she told me the name and I forgot, or I never asked.

I LOVED this dish!! I would love to be able to make it. Unfortuntely I don't know where my friend is anymore, and cannot ask her!

Thank you in advance for any help!!! Smile

-Raina
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georgia



Joined: 16 May 2006
Posts: 456
Location: california

PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2008 6:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oh, dear. You have offered a puzzle here, Raina, but there is a lot of talent and experience among this group. My first reaction is that this is some kind of stir-fry, but if you can add a bit more info, perhaps others will jump in with suggestions.

Can you describe the flavors/taste of the sauce? Sweet? Spicey? Salty? Could you identify the taste of soy sauce or a specific broth? You mention Beef and Broccoli, but there could be a variety of sauces to accompany those ingredients.

Was it served with a starch? Rice? Noodles? Rice noodles? Smile

Anything else you can add would help. I would think that even if we can't duplicate this dish that you loved, together we could come up with something pretty tasty nonetheless or at least help you find a resource to look further on your own.
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TX_Rain



Joined: 25 Jan 2008
Posts: 5
Location: Athens Texas

PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2008 7:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, it is a fairly vauge description Embarassed sorry about that!

Let me see what I can remember, it's been over 8 or 9 years now...

I'll try to choose my words carefully here, The sauce was not spicy, it was a bit salty, and sweet, but mostly sweet.
I don't remember if I tasted soy sauce, but I do remember that the sauce had a beef-broth type taste, like it was the base? or main part of the sauce? The sauce had a consisentcy kind of like a stew, but it was medium brown in color and pretty transparent. It thickened in the fridge, but I suppose many sauces do?
The broccoli was soft, so was the shrimp, onions, and baby corn. The broccoli and onions were cut into very small pieces, and it was small shrimp. I think there may have been peas and carrots in there too.
I think it was served with white rice.

I'm trying hard to remember more, I will keep thinking about it, and if I think of something else I'll add it here!

Thank you!!

---- Off topic, I'm so glad I found this forum! I am very interested in expanding my cooking ability, so I'm excited to have found such a community that I can hopefully learn from!
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srk



Joined: 09 Apr 2005
Posts: 85
Location: Berkeley, CA

PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2008 7:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sounds like something vaguely Asian in origin. If you feel like experimenting, I'd try making some stir-fries with different combos of ingredients and see if you get anything close. My first instinct would be to make the sauce with soy sauce, beef broth, and maybe a bit of cornstarch to thicken it (mix the cornstarch with about 1 tbsp of the warm sauce to dissolve it before adding to the whole pan - this prevents lumps). If your friend was Asian, he/she might have also used a bit of fish sauce or oyster sauce. The latter might be more likely - I think people often add sugar to sauces made with oyster sauce, and it's thick.

I hope you can try this out and let us know how it goes!
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TX_Rain



Joined: 25 Jan 2008
Posts: 5
Location: Athens Texas

PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2008 8:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

You may have turned me on to giving it a shot. I'm not that great of a cook, and I have never made stir fry before, but I think I can experiment and see what I can make of it. Thanks for mentioning the fish and the oyster sauce, I would have never thought of that.
Are there any good threads on stir fry here? Or tips anyone can give? I will look on my own too, but if you have any you'd like to suggest that'd be great.
Thanks again Smile
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KYHeirloomer



Joined: 21 Aug 2007
Posts: 552
Location: Central Kentucky

PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2008 11:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

One trick I learned years ago, from a professional Chinese cook, is to start your stir fry with the protein (in your case, shrimp) and cook until almost done. Remove to a bowl and toss with the cornstarch. Then go back to stir frying the other ingredients.

Return the protein when everything else is just about ready, and let it finish cooking while the sauce thickens.

I guarantee there will not be any lumps nor starchy taste.

Stir frying is more a technique than a specific set of recipes (although you can find those, too, just about anywhere). It depends on high heat, little oil, and constant movement of the ingredients. If you're going to get into stir frying I strongly recommend that you invest in a wok. Get a carbon steel one, and treat it like cast iron.

I agree with the others; given the nature of the sauce, and the fact the ingredients are already cut small, I'd say it was Asian, probably Chinese or faux Chinese, and a stir-fry.
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David



Joined: 30 Sep 2004
Posts: 1855
Location: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2008 3:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Slightly sweet eh! Could Hoisin Sauce have been used here?
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gingerpale



Joined: 23 Jan 2006
Posts: 1324

PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2008 6:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It is SO frustrating to remember a taste but not be able to find/recreate it. Usually you settle for "close", and then you get so used to "close" that you accept it as the real thing... and that is how cooking evolves, I suppose.
Chinese and faux-Chinese--
there's a discusssion that would last forever.. !!

With the ingredients you've listed and all the suggestions here you will end up with a very very tasty dish, but maybe not THE dish.
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TX_Rain



Joined: 25 Jan 2008
Posts: 5
Location: Athens Texas

PostPosted: Fri Jan 25, 2008 10:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you all for your posts! I wish I could have been more specific, but with some trial and error, I think I should be able to get it.
I'll post what my results are when I give it a go. But first I'm going to do some research, to try and improve my chances!

Again, Thank you all for your responses!! They helped me greatly!!
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madameshawshank



Joined: 30 Sep 2004
Posts: 1654
Location: Penrith (where jacarandas remind me of change), New South Wales, Australia

PostPosted: Sat Jan 26, 2008 12:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

TX_Rain...I bet in ..in the future..there'll be a way we'd be able to taste it...

up until then all the very very very best with it...and I bet you'll come every so close to the real dish...there is so much passion in your quest...life is impressed Smile
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brighidsdaughter



Joined: 02 Oct 2004
Posts: 233
Location: Canton, TX USA

PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2008 1:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Howdy neighbor & welcome to the C&Z forums! (jumping & waving so you can see me 20-something miles away)

Sorry I can't help much with your query, but it does sound Asian as well as tasty. With the sweet flavor going on, could there be a bit of duck sauce or plum sauce in it? Good luck, don't get discouraged if it takes a few tries.

Those foods we remember take on a life of their own after a few years.
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TX_Rain



Joined: 25 Jan 2008
Posts: 5
Location: Athens Texas

PostPosted: Sat Feb 09, 2008 7:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello over there in Canton!

Thanks for your reply, and mentioning those sauces! I'm dim in this area of cooking, and every little tip can lead to a good result!

Thanks again y'all! I will be trying this soon...
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