Author: Dax Phillips

Bubble Tea

Bubble Tea

Bubble tea or Boba tea? However you define it there is something completely addicting about a simple addition to a drink. Tapioca pearls. I was first introduced to bubble tea only a couple of years ago. My eldest son was the person who introduced me […]

Korean Japchae

Korean Japchae

I often think before I submit what might the audience think of what I might be coming up with next. Another nut recipe? Another recipe that may be seasonal? Nope. This dude is full of surprises. I can go from sweet to savory to snacks […]

Filipino Adobong Mani (Garlic Peanuts)

Filipino Adobong Mani (Garlic Peanuts)

My oldest son started college this year, and not too long ago he was on Spring break. We really did not have anything planned as everyone’s schedule was not matching up this year so he decided to stay home and rest. It was probably for the best and we think he enjoyed the time spent at home. As I could only think at times about how bored he might be, day in and day out of sleeping in and playing video games, I decided I would snap him out of that luxury and try and get some good time spent with him, and one of his grandpa’s. I decided it would be best if we drove to one of his favorite Asian markets outside of Chicago (H Mart), get some shopping done and then go out to eat.

When planning this, I thought it would be cool to keep the trip a common one. Go eat dim sum in Chicago, then head back to H Mart, then head home. For those who know me probably know that I can get creative in a flash, so the night before I decided to do something different and change up the plan. Instead of dim sum, which I truly love and hopefully was not going to regret, I decided to go in search of Filipino food in that area. After all, we all know that if you want truly authentic food, you are not getting a majority of it from Milwaukee, Wisconsin but you have to travel to the ‘windy city’ Chicago. This was a gamble and I knew that going into the trip. Was I going to waste the time of others on a possibly failed decision? Let’s hope not!

Filipino Garlic Peanuts Recipe Filipino Garlic Peanuts Recipe

I had things lined up, so we took off to Illinois, and started what I thought would be a good quick road trip. What I did not know was that my oldest who I thought was going to hold a conversation with us during the road trip, was going to fall asleep about ten minutes into the trip.

The Filipino restaurant was called Sariling Atin. It is hands down no frills and when walking into the place, I knew I had chosen the right one. It was loaded with 98% pinoy, tables packed, and full of locals. I walked in with confidence like I had been there before. The place was simple. Form a line, pick a protein and two sides. They had about 10 dishes or so in their hot counter. I asked if they had dinuguan (blood pork dish) as I have always wanted to try it, and sure enough they did. I had that along with lumpia, rice, and some Filipino barbecue.

We had quiet the feast. My father-in-law was in heaven, as was I and my son. That dinuguan was phenomenal, and what was even better was the owner came over, sat with us, spoke tagalog with my father-in-law, and was surprised how much we enjoyed the food. What she didn’t know is that I knew a few words in tagalog and I busted them out. Brownie points.

As my father-in-law continued to slurp his sinigang soup, I browsed the small restaurant. I ended up getting a couple of to go items which included peanuts, and some turon (fried banana eggrolls).

When we got back in the car, I asked my father-in-law what he thought about the food. It was legit, and we all were a little delirious from the experience. As we drove back (and as my son fell asleep again) I asked my father-in-law about the peanuts. He briefly explained them to me that they were a snack and good with beer, and that they were cooked with garlic. I jokingly said “Why don’t you ever tell me these things?”. I’m the dude who loves to cook, and one who is especially intrigued by his culture’s cuisine.

The Filipino garlic peanuts were awesome. Somewhat slightly bitter, a little salty, and they were just a perfect handful of a snack that I knew I was going to make them, and that I did.

These peanuts are so good you will be wanting to keep them in your snack arsenal.

Let’s get started.

  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 2 cups unsalted peanuts
  • 6 cloves garlic, sliced into coins (1/8 to 1/4 inch thick)
  • 1/2 tbsp garlic salt, or regular salt

Start by heating a large skillet on medium heat. I find that a wok works well in this recipe. You chose. 

Filipino Garlic Peanuts Ingredients

After a couple of minutes, add the oil and let it come to a shimmer. Add in all of the sliced garlic, and swirl around with a slotted spoon. Continue to swirl as the garlic tends to get a little sticky. Once the garlic begins to turn golden, let it go another 30 seconds or so, then remove with a slotted spoon. Garlic can turn dark brown to the point of too bitter in a second, so just be careful. 

Once removed with a slotted spoon, add them to a small bowl and set to the side. 

Next add the peanuts to the same oil, and continue to swirl with the slotted spoon. Cook for a few minutes, stirring from time to time. Once the peanuts turn a darker golden brown, remove them with a slotted spoon straining any of the oil, and place into a mixing bowl. Repeat until the peanuts are strained and placed into the mixing bowl. 

Add the garlic to the mixing bowl. Add the garlic salt, and then give this a really great mix to ensure that everything is incorporated. 

Let the peanuts cool, and then dig in. 

Filipino Garlic Peanuts

Filipino Garlic Peanuts

The end result was awesome. My daughter was immediately attracted to them, as was I. The smell was intoxicating in the house, and a few days later I could smell them through a bag I reserved. The garlic has not only that great garlic chip flavor, but it is slightly bitter that is paired so well with the salt and the roasting of the peanuts.

I am so glad I picked those up from the restaurant. I would have never been informed of these if it were not for that occasion. I am glad that my random creativity totally paid off in many ways. I hope you enjoy!

Filipino Adobong Mani (Garlic Peanuts)
Author: 
Recipe type: Snacks
Cuisine: Filipino
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12
 
Ingredients
  • ¼ cup canola oil
  • 2 cups unsalted peanuts
  • 6 cloves garlic, sliced into coins (1/8 to ¼ inch thick)
  • ½ tbsp garlic salt, or regular salt
Instructions
  1. Start by heating a large skillet on medium heat. I find that a wok works well in this recipe. You chose.
  2. After a couple of minutes, add the oil and let it come to a shimmer. Add in all of the sliced garlic, and swirl around with a slotted spoon. Continue to swirl as the garlic tends to get a little sticky. Once the garlic begins to turn golden, let it go another 30 seconds or so, then remove with a slotted spoon. Garlic can turn dark brown to the point of too bitter in a second, so just be careful.
  3. Once removed with a slotted spoon, add them to a small bowl and set to the side.
  4. Next add the peanuts to the same oil, and continue to swirl with the slotted spoon. Cook for a few minutes, stirring from time to time. Once the peanuts turn a darker golden brown, remove them with a slotted spoon straining any of the oil, and place into a mixing bowl. Repeat until the peanuts are strained and placed into the mixing bowl.
  5. Add the garlic to the mixing bowl. Add the garlic salt, and then give this a really great mix to ensure that everything is incorporated.
  6. Let the peanuts cool, and then dig in.

 

Roasted Salted Almonds

Roasted Salted Almonds

I really give credit to my wife, in more ways than one, but one of those credits is due to packing a healthy lunch on a regular basis. As I do all of the grocery shopping, I am very in tune as to what is […]

Pudding Pie

Pudding Pie

Pudding Pie. I just love the sound of it. What I did not know is that I would love this simple pie so much that I don’t know why I have never really thought of making something like this. I’ve told you that I have had […]

Vietnamese Lemongrass Chicken Meatloaf Banh Mi

Vietnamese Lemongrass Chicken Meatloaf Banh Mi

That title is a mouthful. Literally! I’m that person that thinks about a Vietnamese banh mi probably once a week. I’m not the guy that is thinking of that (IMHO) six inch sub that lacks all sorts of every taste just so I can make sure I am consuming food (you know the ones I am referring to), but I am that guy who is thinking about that delicious Vietnamese sandwich.  It’s everything I love about a great sandwich, especially when you can find the right bread which is difficult I think in my area of town, and when loaded with great, fresh products it just becomes somewhat of a masterpiece in not only the looks but as importantly the flavors.

Recently I loaded up on a lot of lemongrass. I typically do this when I frequent an Asian market and batch it out when I get back home. I typically trim the lemongrass and put it in freezer safe containers to be used later. This time around though I saved about four stalks and decided to come up with a Vietnamese style chicken meatloaf to be used in a banh mi that I was craving.

Vietnamese Lemongrass Chicken Meatloaf Banh Mi Recipe
Vietnamese Lemongrass Chicken Meatloaf Banh Mi Recipe

This meatloaf in its own right is awesome, but when you combine it with traditional banh mi toppings then you will suddenly have an explosion of flavor in your mouth! Prepare yourself.

Ingredients for the Pickled Carrots and Daikon:

  • 2 whole carrots, shredded
  • 1 daikon, shredded
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup rice vinegar
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 tbsp salt

Ingredients for the Vietnamese Chicken Meatloaf:

  • 2 lbs chicken, boneless and skinless (or buy ground)
  • 3 slices white bread, crusts removed, cut into small cubes
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1 whole onion, minced
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 stalks lemongrass, minced
  • 1 shallot, roughly chopped
  • 1 tbsp ginger, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 tbsp sugar
  • 1 cup fresh cilantro, roughly chopped
  • 2 tbsp fish sauce
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 2 whole eggs
  • 1/2 tbsp cracked black pepper

Ingredients for the Banh Mi:

  • Soft but crusty French bread, cut to your liking
  • 1 jalapeno, thinly sliced
  • 1 English cucumber, cut thinly lengthwise
  • Mayonnaise, optional but recommended
  • Fresh cilantro, chopped

I know it seems like a lot, but trust me, it’s not. The meatloaf, as I have used it here in sandwiches, was also used as a riff on Dan Dan noodles for leftovers a couple of days later, and trust me that one was a hit as well. Sometimes I just love the leftovers, and other times not so much. Anyway…

I make this a day ahead of time as I like to let the pickling work the carrots and daikon overnight, as well as letting the chicken take on all of those awesome flavors from the marinade. Your call, but overnight works really well.

Start by making the pickled carrots and daikon. Set the vinegar, water, salt, and sugar in a pot and bring to a simmer. Turn off the heat and let the salt and sugar dissolve. Once cooled add the shredded carrots and daikon to a mason jar or sealable bowl, and pour in the liquid. Cover, shake, and place in the refrigerator for up to one week.

Next, you can either grind your own chicken, which I did, or use ground chicken. Whatever you chose, add the mixture to a large bowl. To a separate bowl add the bread and top with milk. This is your panade, the secret to moist loaves of meat. Thank me later.

Vietnamese Lemongrass Chicken Meatloaf Banh Mi
Vietnamese Lemongrass Chicken Meatloaf Banh Mi

To a blender or food processor, you are now going to breakdown that lemongrass. It’s fibrous so you want to break it down into as much of a paste as you can. This may take a few minutes. Add the lemongrass, garlic, sugar, shallot, ginger, and onion to a food processor. Pulse and continue to pulse/blend until you have a smoother paste. Nothing too chunky. Scrape the mixture into the bowl of chicken, then add the fish sauce, soy sauce, eggs, and bread and milk mixture. Season with pepper. Get your hands in there and get mixing, much like you would do for meatballs or meatloaf.

Form this into a bread pan. Let marinate overnight.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Cover the pan with aluminum foil and place in the preheated oven for 45 minutes or until the internal temperature of the meatloaf reaches 165.

Remove from the oven and let cool for about 15 minutes.

Get your banh mi ingredients ready.

Heat a large skillet on medium heat. Add 1 tablespoon of canola oil and swirl it around.

Cut one slice of the meatloaf and place it into the hot skillet. The goal is to get a nice sear on the loaf.

During this time, lightly toast your bread.

Vietnamese Lemongrass Chicken Meatloaf Banh Mi Recipe

Lather mayonnaise on both top and bottom. Lay on the meatloaf. If it crumbles, which it may, it’s OK.

Add the jalapenos to your liking, the cucumber, pickled carrots and daikon, and the cucumbers. Fold everything in, tuck it in like a baby, open wide, and get to town.

Where do I begin to describe the experience? Yes, it is an experience. It’s everything and more. It’s fresh, crunchy, powerful, funky, and just one hell of a great sandwich! I hope you enjoy, especially if you are not only looking for a new take on a ‘meatloaf’ but also a great sandwich. Have a great week everyone!

Vietnamese Lemongrass Chicken Meatloaf Banh Mi
Author: 
Recipe type: Sandwiches
Cuisine: Vietnamese
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8
 
Ingredients
  • Ingredients for the Pickled Carrots and Daikon:
  • 2 whole carrots, shredded
  • 1 daikon, shredded
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • ½ cup rice vinegar
  • 1 cup water
  • ½ tbsp salt
  • Ingredients for the Vietnamese Chicken Meatloaf:
  • 2 lbs chicken, boneless and skinless (or buy ground)
  • 3 slices white bread, crusts removed, cut into small cubes
  • ¼ cup milk
  • 1 whole onion, minced
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 stalks lemongrass, minced
  • 1 shallot, roughly chopped
  • 1 tbsp ginger, roughly chopped
  • ½ tbsp sugar
  • 1 cup fresh cilantro, roughly chopped
  • 2 tbsp fish sauce
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 2 whole eggs
  • ½ tbsp cracked black pepper
  • Ingredients for the Banh Mi:
  • Soft but crusty French bread, cut to your liking
  • 1 jalapeno, thinly sliced
  • 1 English cucumber, cut thinly lengthwise
  • Mayonnaise, optional but recommended
  • Fresh cilantro, chopped
Instructions
  1. make this a day ahead of time as I like to let the pickling work the carrots and daikon overnight, as well as letting the chicken take on all of those awesome flavors from the marinade. Your call, but overnight works really well.
  2. Start by making the pickled carrots and daikon. Set the vinegar, water, salt, and sugar in a pot and bring to a simmer. Turn off the heat and let the salt and sugar dissolve. Once cooled add the shredded carrots and daikon to a mason jar or sealable bowl, and pour in the liquid. Cover, shake, and place in the refrigerator for up to one week.
  3. Next, you can either grind your own chicken, which I did, or use ground chicken. Whatever you chose, add the mixture to a large bowl. To a separate bowl add the bread and top with milk. This is your panade, the secret to moist loaves of meat. Thank me later.
  4. To a blender or food processor, you are now going to breakdown that lemongrass. It’s fibrous so you want to break it down into as much of a paste as you can. This may take a few minutes. Add the lemongrass, garlic, sugar, shallot, ginger, and onion to a food processor. Pulse and continue to pulse/blend until you have a smoother paste. Nothing too chunky. Scrape the mixture into the bowl of chicken, then add the fish sauce, soy sauce, eggs, and bread and milk mixture. Season with pepper. Get your hands in there and get mixing, much like you would do for meatballs or meatloaf.
  5. Form this into a bread pan. Let marinate overnight.
  6. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Cover the pan with aluminum foil and place in the preheated oven for 45 minutes or until the internal temperature of the meatloaf reaches 165.
  7. Remove from the oven and let cool for about 15 minutes.
  8. Get your banh mi ingredients ready.
  9. Heat a large skillet on medium heat. Add 1 tablespoon of canola oil and swirl it around.
  10. Cut one slice of the meatloaf and place it into the hot skillet. The goal is to get a nice sear on the loaf.
  11. During this time, lightly toast your bread.
  12. Lather mayonnaise on both top and bottom. Lay on the meatloaf. If it crumbles, which it may, it’s OK.
  13. Add the jalapenos to your liking, the cucumber, pickled carrots and daikon, and the cucumbers. Fold everything in, tuck it in like a baby, open wide, and get to town.