Thursday, May 31, 2012

Super Chef Diary: Coffee Charcoal

Super Chef Diary: Coffee Charcoal: Coffee charcoal is a unique way to serve coffee with extra burnt charcoal added to the coffee pot while the coffee is sti...

Coffee Charcoal

Coffee charcoal is a unique way to serve coffee with extra burnt charcoal added to the coffee pot while the coffee is still piping hot or to the cup of strong coffee and the burnt charcoal will give an extra taste to the coffee.

About the image above: coffee charcoal
as ready to be served

About the image above: the main ingredients of this coffee

About the image above: charcoal is the other main ingredient

About the ingredient above: charcoal is being burnt

About the image above: coffee is being added
to the boiling water

About the image above: stirring the hot coffee

About the image above: coffee is poured to the coffee pot

About the image above: adding hot charcoal to the coffee pot

About the image above: coffee with hot piping charcoal

About the image above: coffee being poured to the cup

I tried to add charcoal to my coffee when I was with friends at the shisha corner. Because I do not smoke so I always disturb friend who smoked shish. I picked few hot charcoal and I placed in my tiny cup and taste so good and I let friends tasted and everybody said it is different taste. Then I decided to invented my own recipe for the charcoal coffee. 

Coffee charcoal is good to absorbs substances in the intestines and help to reduce upset stomach as known that carbon from charcoal helps to neutralize the acid production as well as bloating and gases.

2½ tablespoons full of grounded coffee or Turkish coffee powder (if you want to have cardamom flavor)
4-5 coffee cups boiling water
5 teaspoons sugar (you put more if you need sweeter taste)
4 pieces charcoal (burn to be red hot) – make sure the charcoal size is easy to place into the coffee pot

About the image above: coffee ready to consume
or add more charcoal for stronger taste
like i did on the first image on this page above

Boiled the water until really hot and then add the coffee powder and sugar. Stir for at least 1 minute until the sugar dissolved but the taste of the coffee will not evaporated.

Pour the coffee to the coffee pot and immediately add hot burnt charcoal into it. Serve immediately while is still very hot. And taste the real coffee charcoal. This recipe is for 4-5 cups of coffee.

Remember: the hotter the water, the better taste of the coffee.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Super Chef Diary: Romy Cheese

Super Chef Diary: Romy Cheese: One kind of cheese manufactured in Egypt that is available amongst wide variety cheese in the Middle East available in the market is Ras c...

Romy Cheese

One kind of cheese manufactured in Egypt that is available amongst wide variety cheese in the Middle East available in the market is Ras cheese or more popular with the name of Romy/Romi cheese. The original name of Romy cheese or Gebnah Romi came from the foreigners, because in that time when the first cheese manufactured in Egypt only foreigner making cheese. It was from Turkey and all foreigners in that time called Romy or Romi. While Ras cheese, meaning head because the cheese resembles a bold head appearance is only used in the literature term.

About the image above: 10 kilograms romy cheese

In Egypt and Middle East people know this cheese as Romy Cheese or Gebnah Romy while in Alexandria known as gebnah Torky

It has a slightly strong flavor that gives amazing taste. Sometimes peppercorns are added to enhance the cheese flavor.

About the image above: romy cheese label

About the image above: romy cheese with Egyptian flag

For every intake of one gram of Romy cheese, there is about 3.1 calories, with some fats, proteins and some carbohydrates.

The cheese is almost hard, crumbly-aged kind that is made from combine mixture of pasteurized cow and buffalo natural full cream milk and initiators, salt, black pepper and fat. It has to be kept in about 40% humidity.

About the image above: inside of the romy cheese

Nowadays, Romy cheese is available in vacuumed-pack packages of 100 grams, 200 grams and 600 grams. While the original block is made in round old-aged form with 10 kilograms in weight is still available.

I tried the Romy cheese as in sandwich with tomatoes and sliced cucumber. Very simple and taste so yummy. The texture is almost similar to parmesan cheese and this is considered as a Middle East ‘parmesan’ cheese. This cheese is also very good when it is grilled, as it softens to a thinner form, but keeping its shape almost the same. The taste will be more salty, as the liquid is lost while cooking, however it exudes extra flavors  while melting in your mouth, a taste to remember forever.

About the image above: romy cheese label close-up

According to Chef Emad Attia, there are three kinds of Romy cheese that exist today:

New Romy cheese: this cheese, produced recently is available in the market everyday, and sold without aging. It is packed in slices, ready to use packages.

Medium Romy cheese: the age of this cheese is about 3 years that allow the cheese to expand its flavor to the interesting stage of taste created during the formulation of the cheese age.

About the image above: Arm Saied and Walled carry romy cheese

Old-aged Romy cheese: this is probably the best of its kind with at least 8-12 years to keep in storage to create maximum flavors.  The flavors that this cheese gives is so good that will leave you fall in love to this giant 10 kilograms rounded crumbly cheese. I usually take this cheese and with local pita bread, some sliced cucumber, sliced tomatoes or even better if you add some semi dried tomatoes and extra virgin olive oil.
The uses of the Romy cheese are:
  1. Sandwich Romya: sliced Romy cheese with some tomatoes and cucumber in bagel bread.
  2. Egyptian breakfast: sliced Romy cheese is available for the local breakfast table.
  3. Romy cheese omelet: some chefs grate the Romy cheese and add them to the omelet.
  4. Baked macarona: the grated Romy cheese can be used as one of the ingredients of the baked pasta that is very popular amongst Egyptian.
From the very first time I was introduced to Romy cheese, I came to like it. For me, it taste milder than parmesan.  I even created some dishes using Romy cheese and it has truly enriched my own unique creations of wide selections of menu. Surely if you try this cheese once, the memory about Middle East, Egypt in particular, lingers forever.

Millefeuille of Grilled Romy Cheese and Wheat Pita Bread
With Tahina, Sun-dried Tomatoes and Mint Pesto
Makes 4 servings

400 grams sliced romy cheese
8 pieces sun-dried tomatoes
4 tablespoons tahina sauce
6 pieces wheat pita bread
2 tablespoons mint pesto
2 tablespoons julienne of cucumber
1 tablespoon olive oil
some fresh herb for garnish (fennel leaves, mint leaf)
some julienne pepper for color
some endive for garnish
milled black pepper

About the image above: millefeuille of romy cheese and wheat pita bread

Slice the romy cheese as you want it then grilled on hot flat grill to golden brown to both sides. Remove the cheese from the grill and put on a clean plate to allow cooling.

Cot the wheat pita bread as the same size as the romy cheese slices and rub a bit with garlic with a little olive oil. Grill them on the hot grill until crisp and take them out and keep for later use.

Ensemble the grilled romy cheese and grilled wheat pita bread layers like a sandwich. Keep doing until it coming like 6-8 layers. Trim a little bit to make it appearance look fresh and nicer. Cut also some trimming of the cheese to decorate the plate together with sun-dried tomatoes, endive and mint leaf.

Place the trimmed millefeuille or romy cheese on plate together with the garnish. Spoon some tahina sauce over the sandwich. Garnish the top of the sandwich with julienne of cucumber, red pepper and fresh herb.

Drop some mint pesto around to make it look colorful. Serve immediately.