Thursday, February 07, 2008

Tofu Omelette with Ostrich Sauce

Technically speaking this is not a sauce made with ostrich so perhaps the title of this post is a tiny bit misleading. It is rather a sauce I made a little while ago to go with some spiced ostrich fillets. The remainder of it has been in the fridge ever since, used occasionally to add exotica to grilled sausages or pork chops, but always called, in my mind at least, ostrich sauce.
It is an utterly seductive thing - a rich deep shiny sticky sweet spicy brown sauce. It is essentially a reduction of sweet soy and coconut milk perfumed with spices. And it is amazing. Consider it my addition to your seductive repertoire for Valentines Day next week.
I learned the very simple trick of making it at a cooking class at the wonderful London restaurant Champor Champor.

I wanted to use the last of it to make another dish something special. Using my South East Asian cookbook for something else my eye was caught by an Indonesian recipe for tofu omelette with special sauce. I liked the idea of the omelette figuring it would be a delicate thing and I already had my very own special sauce so I bought a block of silken tofu to give it a go.

Ostrich Sauce

400ml coconut cream
400ml sweet soy sauce - Kicap Lemak Manis - buy it in Asain food shops
1 fresh red chilli - small and hot
3 star anise

Put all the ingredients into a small pan and bring to a simmer. Cook till reduced by about half.

Tofu Omelette

200g tofu - silken or firm
3 eggs
4 spring onions, cut into 2cm lengths, green and white parts
Salt and pepper
Peanut oil

Mash the tofu in a bowl to a rough consistency then beat in the eggs. Stir through the spring onions and season.

Heat about a tablespoon of oil in a medium frying pan and add half the mix when the oil starts to bubble. Spread the omelette and cook till the underside is golden. Turn - I made a bit of a mess of the turning but it doesn't affect the taste - and cook the other side till golden. Serve immediately onto a large plate with salad and special sauce.

Repeat for the second omelette.

Thought about serving the meal with rice but that seemed slightly wrong to me so went instead for the classic french omelette service - with salad. Only needed to translate the form to something more Asian. I had some tamarind water in the fridge - what a treasure trove my fridge is at times - from making a rendang a couple of weeks ago so thought the sourness of that with spiced orange oil mixed in the same proportions as lemon/oil in vinaigrette would make a very good dressing for finely shredded cabbage and thin raw beans. I was right. Added the other half of a bunch of coriander that was also in the fridge from a previous dinner for a herb edge and tossed the lot.
Altogether a quite wonderful Monday night supper. Frugal because it was mostly about using things left from the creation of other meals yet utterly new. And the whole lot ready in 15 minutes.

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