My ideas for what to cook this week include recipes for everything from Japanese tonkatsu and Mexican grilled chicken tacos or tacos de pollo asado to a Sichuanese inspired bang bang chicken salad, a Moroccan lamb tagine with prunes and almonds, and a Spanish oxtail stew or rabo de toro from Jerez in Southern Spain.
We’re coming up to our wettest month of the monsoon or rainy season here in Cambodia and already the skies are slate-grey for much of the day and there are longer-than-usual downpours. Cambodia, like so many countries around the world, has experienced serious flooding recently and so much of the countryside is drenched.
What’s that got to do with what to cook this week? Everything for me. I really find that the weather affects my mood and the food I want to eat. It doesn’t matter that we’re in Southeast Asia where the weather is warm and humid, those grey skies have me craving comfort food such as tonkatsu and tacos and hearty dishes like tagines and stews. How about you?
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Lastly, you could browse our Grantourismo store for gifts for food lovers, including food themed reusable cloth face masks designed with my images. Now let me share some ideas for what to cook this week.
What to Cook This Week – Tonkatsu, Tacos, Lamb Tagine and Oxtail Stew
Tonkatsu Recipe for the Most Tender Juicy Japanese Deep-Fried Pork Cutlet Ever
Terence’s tonkatsu recipe makes the most tender Japanese deep-fried pork cutlet you’ll ever taste. This simple but revered deep-fried Japanese pork dish has an amazing crunch from the golden panko crust, melt-in-your-mouth moist pork, and the tangy taste of the tonkatsu sauce.
When we need a break from Southeast Asian cooking, this Japanese favourite is one of the first dishes that Terence will make. It can be made with either pork (katsu), tenderloin (hire katsu) or sirloin (rosu katsu) but we prefer pork tenderloin.
Tonkatsu wouldn’t be tonkatsu without a tonkatsu sauce. Terence’s recipe is a simple one, although we’ve seen recipes with more than a dozen ingredients such as the amazing tonkatsu sauce recipe in our friend Jane Lawson’s cookbook Zenbu Zen.
The reason to keep this simple – unless you’re going on a tonkatsu-making bender – is that you’ll only ever use this sauce with the tonkatsu. While store-bought tonkatsu sauces can be just fine, many brands tend to be expensive and this tonkatsu sauce recipe can be made with ingredients you’ll probably have at home.
Mexican Grilled Chicken Tacos Recipe for Tacos de Pollo Asado
I always make an effort to try to share at least one Mexican recipe in our What to Cook this Week round-ups for Tuesday, best known by food lovers as Taco Tuesday. If anything, it’s a good excuse for us to cook Mexican food or Mexican-American food. But seriously, who needs an excuse?!
There’s plenty of beautiful corn available here in Cambodia right now, and I just happen to have some cobs leftover from a Mexican-inspired soup I’ve been testing out, so I think we’ll make this easy Mexican grilled chicken tacos recipe for tacos de pollo asado.
Corn tortillas are filled with incredibly delicious chicken pieces that are moist and flavourful thanks to a marinade of chipotle and spices such as cumin and paprika. They’re delightfully smoky courtesy of the griddle pan, but you can also cook the chicken on a barbecue or grill.
Bang Bang Chicken Salad Recipe for a Fresh Light Take on the Spicy Sichuan Speciality
Our bang bang chicken salad recipe is inspired by the classic Chinese bang bang chicken, a Sichuan cuisine specialty typically served as one of an array of starters at Sichuanese restaurants.
Cold succulent chicken is served swimming in a deliciously addictive sesame sauce with a delightfully hot and numbing homemade Sichuanese chilli oil. Crisp lettuce, crunchy cucumbers and fresh fragrant coriander transform the dish into a lovely light yet filling salad.
We first tried it at a Sichuan restaurant in Hong Kong many years ago, then in China a week later, but it was in Australia of all places that we fell in love with it and we’ve been making it ever since.
It’s a cinch to make, too, comes together quickly, and is a fantastic use of poached chicken breasts. For more, see this collection of our best poached chicken breast recipes.
Moroccan Lamb Tagine with Prunes and Almonds Recipe from Marrakech
I picked up a couple of Moroccan tagine pots from a second-hand shop here in Siem Reap last week and I’ve been eager to make a tagine ever since. Sadly, we can’t get lamb here, so we’ll probably make a chicken tagine instead, however, I encourage you to make this Moroccan lamb tagine with prunes and almonds recipe.
Terence first made this Moroccan lamb tagine with prunes and almonds recipe in the kitchen of our riad in Marrakech, Morocco, where he was taught to make it by Jamila, the riad cook. and it’s one of our favourite tagine recipes.
A Moroccan tagine is essentially a slow-cooked stew made from meat, generally lamb, or chicken, but a tagine can contain anything from duck to fish. You won’t find two cooks who’ll agree on what exactly should go into a tagine as most cooks follow their own family recipes.
The best thing about this Moroccan lamb tagine with prunes and almonds is that, firstly, it’s dead easy. Secondly, it will fill your home with the most delicious aromas. Serve it with some crusty bread or plain couscous.
Note that you can buy the Ras el Hanout spice mix online if you can’t get all of the ingredients separately to make your own. You could also use a pressure cooker if you want, as it should cut the simmering time down to about an hour. Don’t quote us on that, though.
Rabo de Toro Oxtail Stew Recipe from Jerez in Southern Spain
This recipe for a melt-in-your-mouth Rabo de Toro oxtail stew comes from Jerez in Southern Spain where Terence first learnt to make it way back in 2010 on the year-round global grand tour that launched Grantourismo.
Our recipe makes a classic slow-braised dish that needs a long cooking time, but it will reward you with rich, robust flavours. The recipe is inspired by the rabo de toro that we ate at Bar Juanito in Jerez.
Just like the Moroccan tagine Terence made in Essaouira, Morocco, this rabo de toro is not a dish you start thinking about making at 6.30pm and expect to serve the same night. It requires hours of slow cooking.
And if you love a good old-fashioned traditional beef stew, do check out this collection of our best stew recipes.
Please do let us know in the comments below if you make any of our What to Cook this Week recipes as we always love to hear how our recipes turned out for you.