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Old 01-29-2020, 02:57 AM   #21
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Thank you Kayelle.
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Old 01-29-2020, 08:44 AM   #22
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Thanks, everyone, I love all the suggestions. And maybe you're right, I should probably toss out the old stuff. But then it might be a while before I'd consider buying it again and I'd like to try some of these recipes. I know how I am; usually once I toss something, I have no intention of getting more. So I'll just try what I have on hand and, CWS, I'll keep your suggestion in mind of toasting it in a pan, if it needs it.
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Old 01-29-2020, 10:48 AM   #23
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Linda, I had another thought. You said you don't generally make Chinese food at home because it doesn't taste the same as in the restaurants. I grew up in Michigan, where corn oil was king and I used it for everything. My stir-fry didn't taste right until I got a Chinese cookbook, which mentioned that peanut oil is most commonly used in China. I bought some and it made all the difference. My Chinese food suddenly tasted authentic. Give it a try.
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Old 01-29-2020, 12:23 PM   #24
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Thanks, everyone, I love all the suggestions. And maybe you're right, I should probably toss out the old stuff. But then it might be a while before I'd consider buying it again and I'd like to try some of these recipes. I know how I am; usually once I toss something, I have no intention of getting more. So I'll just try what I have on hand and, CWS, I'll keep your suggestion in mind of toasting it in a pan, if it needs it.
You can easily make your own at home if you have star anise, fennel, cassisa or cinnamon, Szechuan pepper and cloves. Ratio os 2:1:1:.0.33:0.16 (e.g., 2 T : 1 T :1 T :1 tsp : 1/2 tsp). Put everything in spice grinder and whirl away.
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Old 01-29-2020, 01:26 PM   #25
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I've seen recipes for Chinese red pork (Char Sui?) that include 5 spice.
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Old 01-29-2020, 01:45 PM   #26
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I've seen recipes for Chinese red pork (Char Sui?) that include 5 spice.
Serious Eats is my go-to for many recipes. Here's their recipe for the char siu marinade/sauce. Toward the bottom of the page, there's a link to a recipe for Chinese pork spareribs using the sauce.

https://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/...ce-recipe.html
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Old 01-29-2020, 05:05 PM   #27
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Linda, I had another thought. You said you don't generally make Chinese food at home because it doesn't taste the same as in the restaurants. I grew up in Michigan, where corn oil was king and I used it for everything. My stir-fry didn't taste right until I got a Chinese cookbook, which mentioned that peanut oil is most commonly used in China. I bought some and it made all the difference. My Chinese food suddenly tasted authentic. Give it a try.
I've heard the same thing about the peanut oil. But daaaaaaang that stuff is expensive. Would be good for deep-fried foods, though. I don't eat fried foods very often, but every now and then I make things like Tempura or homemade French fries.

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You can easily make your own at home if you have star anise, fennel, cassisa or cinnamon, Szechuan pepper and cloves. Ratio os 2:1:1:.0.33:0.16 (e.g., 2 T : 1 T :1 T :1 tsp : 1/2 tsp). Put everything in spice grinder and whirl away.
Cinnamon and cloves is all I have of that list. I'll try the stuff I have and see if it tastes good.
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Old 01-29-2020, 05:49 PM   #28
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Linda, you don't need much oil when you stir-fry. You could always buy a small bottle. Just store it in the fridge so it doesn't go rancid. And remember to take it out when you first start prepping to cook - it takes a while to liquify, since it hardens in the fridge just like olive oil.

We enjoy Smucker's Natural peanut butter. Over the years, though, it seems to have a deeper layer of peanut oil on top of the ground nuts. I've always stirred the oil into the butter, but that extra deep oil layer made the peanut butter too soft. I got tired of PB squirting out of my sandwich (or sliding off my cracker or apple slice), so I cleaned out an empty jar and pour off the extra oil into it. I can then use up my "free" peanut oil when I need it in cooking.
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Old 01-29-2020, 06:31 PM   #29
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Linda, you don't need much oil when you stir-fry. You could always buy a small bottle. Just store it in the fridge so it doesn't go rancid. And remember to take it out when you first start prepping to cook - it takes a while to liquify, since it hardens in the fridge just like olive oil.

We enjoy Smucker's Natural peanut butter. Over the years, though, it seems to have a deeper layer of peanut oil on top of the ground nuts. I've always stirred the oil into the butter, but that extra deep oil layer made the peanut butter too soft. I got tired of PB squirting out of my sandwich (or sliding off my cracker or apple slice), so I cleaned out an empty jar and pour off the extra oil into it. I can then use up my "free" peanut oil when I need it in cooking.
Very good ideas
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Old 01-29-2020, 06:45 PM   #30
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I suggest making a braised beef shank using the 5 spice. Here's a recipe I found online that looks good. The ingredients you'll need is beef shank, soy sauce, rice wine, star anise, ginger and green onion. This recipe does take a long time though according to the recipe- 1.5-2 hrs for cooking and 1-2 hrs for cooling.
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Old 01-29-2020, 08:20 PM   #31
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Linda, my bottle of 5 spice powder is about as old as yours, and it sure hasn't lost any of its punch. Remember to go easy with it, as a little goes a long way. I've seen some recipes calling for way too much of it for my taste. I like enough to think "hmm, what is that flavor?". I'm sure you know what I mean.
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Old 01-29-2020, 08:22 PM   #32
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I suggest making a braised beef shank using the 5 spice. Here's a recipe I found online that looks good. The ingredients you'll need is beef shank, soy sauce, rice wine, star anise, ginger and green onion. This recipe does take a long time though according to the recipe- 1.5-2 hrs for cooking and 1-2 hrs for cooling.

That looks like a reasonable recipe calling for 1/2 tsp. 5 spice but I'd leave out the star anise as it's already in the powder.

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Old 01-29-2020, 10:33 PM   #33
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That looks like a reasonable recipe calling for 1/2 tsp. 5 spice but I'd leave out the star anise as it's already in the powder.

You might want to try it as written first. I've made a delicious recipe for Chinese pulled pork that includes a couple whole star anise along with the other ingredients and the forward flavor of it was quite distinctive. I am not a big fan of licorice, so it wasn't like that, but I remember thinking, wow, this tastes like it came from a Chinese restaurant.
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Old 01-29-2020, 11:18 PM   #34
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You might want to try it as written first. I've made a delicious recipe for Chinese pulled pork that includes a couple whole star anise along with the other ingredients and the forward flavor of it was quite distinctive. I am not a big fan of licorice, so it wasn't like that, but I remember thinking, wow, this tastes like it came from a Chinese restaurant.
I have to agree. I am not a fan of licorice flavours. But, I make a Danish rolled pork roast with dried apricots and prunes stuffing. The stuffing is seasoned with salt and pepper, grated nutmeg, the seeds from a vanilla been, and cardamom. It is braised in white wine and the soaking water from the dried fruit. with two whole star anise and the empty vanilla pod. It is really good and, probably because the star anise are whole, they just add a certain "je ne sais quoi", with no licorice tones.
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Old 01-31-2020, 11:03 AM   #35
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on sweet potatoes, fish, anything you think that would benefit from that flavor. cooked carrots, too.

we always have it in the house!
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Old 01-31-2020, 11:15 AM   #36
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Linda, my bottle of 5 spice powder is about as old as yours, and it sure hasn't lost any of its punch. Remember to go easy with it, as a little goes a long way. I've seen some recipes calling for way too much of it for my taste. I like enough to think "hmm, what is that flavor?". I'm sure you know what I mean.
Yes I do. I don't like one certain flavor to come on too strong. Kind of ruins the dish for me. Especially since I don't really like the flavor of licorice that much and the anise, if it's too strong, will turn me off of the food.
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Old 01-31-2020, 12:15 PM   #37
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Yes I do. I don't like one certain flavor to come on too strong. Kind of ruins the dish for me. Especially since I don't really like the flavor of licorice that much and the anise, if it's too strong, will turn me off of the food.
It depends on the blend, but it should be a smooth, complex taste without any particular flavor being too forward. A strong licorice flavor would ruin it for me, too. I don't eat fennel, because I don't like the licorice flavor, but I really like Chinese Five-Spice.
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Old 01-31-2020, 12:37 PM   #38
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It depends on the blend, but it should be a smooth, complex taste without any particular flavor being too forward. A strong licorice flavor would ruin it for me, too. I don't eat fennel, because I don't like the licorice flavor, but I really like Chinese Five-Spice.
I guess there's only one way to find out if I like it too... use one or more of these recipes and suggestions.

Normally when I'm using a new spice for the first time, I tend to use less than what the recipe calls for, just in case I don't really like the flavor. And if I do like the flavor, I can always add more in. I love to cook, but I'm slightly timid when it comes to new things.
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Old 01-31-2020, 12:54 PM   #39
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I guess there's only one way to find out if I like it too... use one or more of these recipes and suggestions.

Normally when I'm using a new spice for the first time, I tend to use less than what the recipe calls for, just in case I don't really like the flavor. And if I do like the flavor, I can always add more in. I love to cook, but I'm slightly timid when it comes to new things.
I do the same. I think it's just a smart way to cook. Like you said, you can always add more - but you can't take it out

If you have a cucumber or something similar, just sprinkle a little bit on it and taste it that way. I'd add a tiny pinch of salt, too.
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Old 01-31-2020, 12:54 PM   #40
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It depends on the blend, but it should be a smooth, complex taste without any particular flavor being too forward. A strong licorice flavor would ruin it for me, too. I don't eat fennel, because I don't like the licorice flavor, but I really like Chinese Five-Spice.

GG, you are correct about the blend being different with brands. I see now that my Dynasty brand not only contains the usual blend but also the addition of licorice root as the last ingredient. No wonder I'm not happy with it. I'm on the hunt now for a brand that doesn't contain licorice root.

A hunting I will go....
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