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banana stem

banana stem

description This is the inner part of the banana stem which is used in mohingar to give texture, bulk and flavour. The texture is similar to celery but the flavour is subtle and unique. Quite difficult to compare it with anything. I have only seen fresh banana stem sold in an Asian supermarket down Brick…

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fish, dried (bombay duck)

dried fish

description Bombay duck, despite its name, refers to bummalo. The fish are hung on racks and dried in the sun. It has a strong odour and best stored in an air-tight container in the fridge. The dried fish is fried until crisp and added to stews and soups. My favourite way to eat Bombay duck…

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cendol

cendol

description These pale green strands are cooked green pea powder flavored with pandan leaves. They are popular throughout Asia, eaten in numerous desserts/drinks. Cendol can be bought ready made in packets at some Asian supermarkets. substitutes None availability Asian speciality shop related recipe Burmese faluda

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coriander/cilantro

coriander leaf

description Both the leaves and roots are used in Burmese cooking. It imparts a distinctly strong flavour with an earthy taste. As it looses its flavour quickly when cooked, it is usually added just before serving or eaten raw in a salad/thote. Best kept in the fridge, first spray water on leaves and stem then…

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fish sauce

fish sauce

description This is essential to Burmese cooking similar to Thai fish sauce, nam pla. The Burmese version is slightly stronger without being pungent. A good fish sauce is said to be ‘a clear, reddish brown coluor, like the coluor of good whisky or sherry, without any sediments. It has a pleasant aroma of the sea,…

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duck eggs

eggs

description Duck eggs are whitish in colour, larger and richer in flavour than hen eggs. They are eaten hard boiled with Coconut noodle soup or Mohingar, salted then the yolk is used in sticky rice parcels, and in an Egg curry. substitutes Hen eggs availability Supermarkets, Asian stores related recipes Egg curry, Coconut noodle soup,…

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cumin

cumin

description It has a distinctive aroma with a slightly warm and bitter taste. I prefer to use cumin seeds and grind them myself after dry roasting in a saucepan. Do this in small batches as cumin can quickly lose its pungency. substitutes None availability Supermarkets, Asian stores related recipes Burmese chicken biryani, Chicken masala, Mutton…

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chillies

chilli

description Both dried and fresh chillies are used in Burma. Dried whole red chillies are soaked in water then pounded and used in curries which not only add heat but also a fiery red colour. substitutes Chilli powder, paprika availability Supermarkets, Asian stores

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chayote

chayote

description This small pear-shaped fruit is part of the squash family and is also known as choko. Peel the skin first and remove the soft seed in the middle before cooking. It has a delicate flavour and goes particularly well stir-fired with fresh prawns. Choose a small, firm and unblemished fruit. Store in the fridge…

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chana dal

chana dal

description Chana dal closely resembles yellow split peas but are smaller in size. I think they have a wonderful nutty, sweet flavour. substitutes Yellow split peas availability Supermarket, Asian stores related recipes Butter & lentil rice

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