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Braised oxtails – curried Pork Hocks -mushroom vegetarian balls

Sorry no pictures – too busy eating.  Before I forget though I thought I’d best share the recipes with you of last night’s meal for the Prayer Circle evening.  The meats were served on a mixed  bed of Sushi rice and plump medium grain rice.

The Asian grocery store near here, actually slices the pork hocks into slices, just short of cutting all the way through the bone.  This was seared in 100% coconut oil, (1 teaspoon or so) enough so that the crushed garlic and ginger wouldn’t burn and to give the meat a bit of colour.  then I added some chicken stock and curry and let it simmer for a couple of hours.  The curry is the cubed curry that you buy in Asian grocery stores, and you can pick your own flavour and temperature, mild, medium or HOT.  While it is in simmer mode, I add sliced onion and diced celery.

The oxtails, were given similar treatment.  They were seared using the coconut oil, This time I make sure the oxtails are tossed and stir fried until a golden brown, then I add ginger, black bean sauce, some hoisin sauce, and a vegetable mushroom soy, toss some more, then add cooking sake to taste, prior to adding some chicken stock.and cubed king mushrooms.  This too is allowed to come to a rolling boil, then simmer for several hours,

Both of the dishes are flavourful, and provide a rich  harmonizing gravy for the rice…Often when such meals are served the gravies are their own culinary dish.  The reason why the rice is so important to the meal.

The vegetarian balls, are similar to the recipe provided a few blogs back, you can see a picture of the balls on that blog.  This time though, I had actual mushrooms in the mix of oyster and mushroom soy, previously cooked mushrooms and carrots that had been cooked in a sauce for another meal.. they were mashed with the potatoes and chick peas providing a different flavour.  I added to that minced garlic and grated fresh ginger.  Used two eggs with the mix along with about a full cup of Panko (Japanese bread crumbs)  They are a good size since I use the ice cream scoop to make them.  They hold their shape well.  Baked in an oven on a  lightly greased pizza pan depending on your oven, take between 1/2 an hour and 45 minutes. When they are a rich golden brown take them out and let them cool.    I store them using a muffin tin for each ball.

Obviously I do the above over a two day period.  This allows for the flavours to really settle into the dishes.  Then when it is time to eat, I bring the pots back into the kitchen and slowly reheat them on the stove.  The vegetarian balls can be zapped in the microwave, or eaten cold. This dear reader is the reason living in a country where we have 4 seasons, I offer up these meals when it is late fall or winter and its cold outside.  I can use the summer kitchen to keep the dishes cold in their pots over night.

Depending on the group you are serving you can provide along with the meal a plate of fresh veggies or a shredded slaw is good.  Keep  the greens simple and crunchy.

Beverage to go with the above for me is a glass of cold water, but herbal teas are offered to guests.  AFTER the meal.  While eating the object of such a prayer circle is to allow your taste buds to enjoy and experience all the different spices and tastes and textures.

Being mindful and exercising you brain and spirituality, is not just sitting in silence, it is learning how to bring the mindfulness into your every day life and activities.  Sharing mindfulness with a friend(s) and partaking of an evening where all your senses are employed.

Prayer and “active” meditations are key to having and living a balanced life where spirituality and GOD are part of every second of your day.

after the meal and prior to bedtime, I checked on Q who was showing off her svelte figure,  she can eat and it never seems to show!  A great evening of sharing, eating, mindfulness. and time for creativity.  Amazing =^_^=

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