The Beijing Olympics start today - is everything really going as smoothly as it seems? Chinese-American food writer and founder of Black Sesame Cooking school Jen Lin-Liu joins us from Beijing to talk about the China you won't see on TV, new food regulations, and her book "Serve the People: a Stir-Fried Journey Through China".
Recipe: Candied Apples
- Jen Lin-Liu, Chinese-American writer and author of "Serve the People: A Stir-Fried Journey Through China"
In a bowl, mix together ½ cup of the flour, the baking powder, and ¼ cup of the water to make a batter. Place the remaining ½ cup flour in a separate bowl. Dip the apple cubes into the flour, turning to coat them, then place them in the batter.
Heat the oil in a wok. The oil will be hot enough when a speack of batter dropped in it sizzles immediately. Gently drop the battered apple cubes, one at a time, into the oil. Fry them until they are a light golden color, about 3 minutes; they should puff up while frying. Remove the cubes and drain on paper towels, allowing them to cool. Strain the oil to remove any bits of burned batter, then reheat the oil. Fry the apples again for 1 minute, until they are nicely browned. Transfer to clean paper towels to drain.
Place a clean wok over medium-high heat and add the ¼ cup oil, swirling it around to make sure that the bottom of the wok is coated. Add the sugar and ½ cup of water and cook until the mixture bubbles, stirring occasionally. Continue to sitr as the bubbles become smaller and the mixture thickens, adding a dash of oil to make sure it doesn't stick. When the mixture stops bubbling and takes on a yellow sheen, add the apple cubes and stir vigorously to coat them. Remove wok from the heat and pour the coated apples onto a well-greased plate.
Serve immediately, placing a bowl of water next to the apples. Each cube should be dunked in water before eating, to harden the caramel.
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 2 cups water
- 1 large Fuji apple, peeled and cut into ¾-inch cubes
- 1 quart vegetable oil for deep-frying plus ¼ cup for the caramel
- 1½ cups sugar