Reheating Instructions: Best of 2015 Part One

This “Best of 2015” menu could be renamed “stuff that really doesn’t taste great cold.” Especially not the shrimp pancakes or (sort of surprisingly) the aromatic rice. Don’t eat them cold. Not the gumbo either. Really, the cake, that’s good cold and the rest need heat applied. Here’s a run down of reheating options:

Pork Vindaloo & Gumbo Z’Herbes: Reheat in the microwave or gently in a saucepan on the stove until it’s warm all the way through. 

Dumplings: These are originally cooked by pan frying them with moderate oil in a skillet, then adding water, and covering them (with the burner still on) to steam. They can be reheated by doing that process again. You could also use just some oil and a covered skillet (more crispy), or just some water and a covered skillet (less crispy). Letting them reach room temperature and then warming them ever-so-briefly in the microwave can also work in a pinch. Good with a little butter on top.

Bengali Spinach & Roasted Chickpeas: Reheat in the microwave or in a small saucepan, just until warm. If it seems too dry, add a splash of cream or whole milk. 

Crispy Shrimp Pancakes: You see the word crispy there? It’s important. These are mostly about the texture. Reheat in a thin layer of quite hot (don’t hurt yourself) oil in a skillet (don’t use pan spray, you want 1/8 inch at least). Reheating in an oven could also work. If these aren’t reheated in a re-crisping fashion you’ll lose most of their charm.

Sweet Soy Brussels: You can decide whether you like your brussels more on the crispy side, in which case reheat these in either a hot skillet or an oven, or soft side, in which case a microwave is fine. I reach for the skillet myself. You want them robustly warm but not piping hot or they’ll start to disintegrate.

Aromatic Rice: Loosely covered in a microwave works well, or a covered saucepan with a truly small amount of water or broth in its base. It does dry out in the fridge, so a little water will help with that – too much will just make soggy rice. 

Burnt Sugar Cake: If you’re going to resist eating this for a while, it should go in the fridge to preserve the cream cheese frosting. 

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