[dek-uh-duhns, dih-keyd-ns] noun - unrestrained or excessive self-indulgence
The word maybe very subjective, but when the host to this challenge (and my twitter buddy) Lala announced the theme for Kulinarya Cooking Club for April, I instantly thought of sweet and fluffy canonigo. This dessert dish is a Filipino version of the French dessert oefus a la neige.
But before you get too excited (and so as not to be accused of bait and switch)... let me tell you how I ended up not doing canonigo.
I saw in my freezer a pack of "pusitcharon" or dried squid ready for frying (just like chicharones). The pack seemed to say "fry me, it only takes 10 seconds"... hmmm, what an intriguing substitute to my orignal dish for the challenge.
Before I knew it, I dropped a batch of dried squid in a tub of hot oil and flash fried it to instantly bring out the intense flavor. But let me warn you before the neighbors complain, the scent will also be intense. Please plan accordingly - make sure you have enough ventilation to clear out the smell of the fried squid. Also, make sure not to overcook it.
But this dish is not decadent enough for me, I wanted something sinful and over the top. I wanted to serve a dish not only having intense flavors, but also being sweet, spicy, crunchy and tangy. So I went even further. I put back the crispy squid into the pan, poured 3/4 cups of brown sugar, added chopped chiles, dashed more cayenne powder, drizzled with vinegar. And voila...
intense flavor (and aroma) ... check!
tangy ... check!
Anything fried tastes good. Whether you deny it or not. The golden brown color from deep frying and the caramelized sugar coating it makes me grab a couple of pieces. I took the first bite and was temporarily dazed. It made me think decadent and sinful! What more can I say, it's deep fried (crunchy), salty, flavorful, sweet and spicy all in that one bite.
I took a second bite... the crunch it created sounded so good, and the unfamiliar texture made it even more special, it was like a whole orchestra playing in my mouth, with the different flavors comprising the sound of the various instruments. The combination was magical. When I bit into the little specs of chili, it exploded in my mouth and jolted me with heat while giving me the tangy taste of the vinegar.
I was standing there by my stove and I could feel my head lifting my chin up, my cheeks slowly stiffing up until a smile came about. It was happiness in a crunch!
When my husband came home, I saw him grab one, then another until he said: "This is genius! Give me some beer!" It was definitely something new.
And it took me all of 20 minutes to make... Here again are the directions:
Just get a pack of pusitcharon... (available at the Asian grocery store)
Deep fry it for 10 seconds... you would know it's cooked when they float to the surface...
Add some brown sugar... chopped chiles (depending on how much heat you want) add 2 tbsp of vinegar...
Voila, you have this sinful indulgence on a plate...
One caveat I must make: This fried squid dish is high in salt and sugar, so please do not over-indulge.
|This has been another KCC post check out what other KCC friends has in store this month!|