What is a good fresh salsa recipe?

Why does everyone keep wanting me to answer this?  The salsa that we gave to Quora User was something we threw together and did not resemble any of the recipes we found on the web.  I have absolutely no expertise in salsa-making.  If I remember correctly, it was something like:

  • Chop up a bunch of Roma tomatoes (four maybe?)
  • Chop up like, one onion
  • Chop up a jalapeno pepper
  • Add some fresh-ground pepper
  • Mix all of it together
  • Store it in the refrigerator overnight, which seems to improve it

I think the key was really that we had fresh organic (?) tomatoes that we'd acquired that day.

What are the best ways to brew tasty tea?

Basic rules for brewing good tea:

  1. Use loose leaf, as opposed to tea bags
  2. Use a brewing vessel that lets the leaves expand as much as possible. Tea-ball infusers and some brewing baskets restrict the expansion of the leaves too much.
  3. Use the three factors in your control to get your desired taste:
  • water temperature (too bitter could mean water is too hot)
  • leaf quantity (too bitter and too strong could mean you're using too much leaf)
  • brewing time (again too bitter and too strong could mean you're brewing it for too long)

Those are the basics! My favorite brewing vessel is a gaiwan: <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gaiwan> 

This is the best for brewing Chinese-style teas and this is ideal for brewing Kung Fu style (aka Gong Fu Tea): http://www.chanteas.com/pages/ku…

What's the absolute best recipe for roasted garlic bulbs?

Simple. 1) Roast a head of garlic drizzled in olive oil and oregano for an hour. 2) Brush some olive oil across a few slices of bread (like ciabatta or pugliese). Toast them. 3) Spread the now soft cloves of garlic across the bread. 4) Then put some goat curd on top (or very young goat cheese). Voila!

I've also mixed it into homemade pizza sauce and it's pretty friggin' unbelievable.

How do you make Hawaiian sweet bread?

Ryan Ozawa posted a link to a recipe by Ruthie Banks, a noted baking contest winner, who designs a nice recipe, apparently based on a sweet-tasting potato-egg bread.  The food.com recipe looked much more complicated, with flour added in stages.

I've enjoyed a boxed bread mix for bread machine that makes a very pleasant "Hawaiian bread" : http://www.continentalmills.com/…
There's also a mix for Organic Sweet Hawaiian Bread by Sandy's – Pure & Simple.  Both of these could be made by hand

How do you make the best pizza dough?

You need wheat flour, water, yeast and salt. I also use a bit of olive oil.

The wheat flour would be labeled "typo 00" in Italy, which means it has a lot of gluten and a high protein content. (I don't know the US categories, so someone might want one to suggest an edit here and add this information).

Use a mixer with dough hooks.

If you use fresh yeast:

  • Dissolve 20-25 g of yeast in 300 ml water at room temperature (a fork helps)
  • Put 500 g of wheat flour in a bowl
  • Start mixing and add the water with the yeast in small portions. Mix thoroughly – it takes time!

If you use dry yeast:

  • Put 500 g of wheat flour in a bowl and add the dried yeast. Blend with a fork. Move the mix to the margins of the bowl to create a pit in the middle.
  • Pour 300 ml of water at room temperature into the pit.
  • Start mixing in the center of the bowl, collecting the flour mix from the rim in small portions. Mix thoroughly—it takes time!

Continue (in both cases) like this:

  • The dough is supposed to be elastic; if not add some more flour or water, but only very little at once! It is OK when your mixing machine starts to protest.
  • Let the dough rest for a few minutes.
  • Then add a tea spoon of salt to the bowl and a table spoon of olive oil. Knead the dough with your hands for five minutes so that salt and oil are slowly worked into it. If do it with clean hands, the dough won't stick to them when your finished.
  • Put a towel on the bowl and let the dough prove at room temperature for app. 90 minutes. Alternatively, you can put wrap on the bowl and let it prove in your fridge (make sure to have enough headroom!). It will prove within 4 hours there and stay fresh for more than 48 hours, so you can prepare your dough days before.

If your ready for your pizza production, make four (thick) to six (thin) portions and roll the dough on plenty of wheat flour to the size you like. Roll it immediately before the pizza goes into the oven; if you can cook only one or two at a time, have the other dough balls covered with your towel.

Pizza is all about heat. Heat your oven to the max, put the pizza onto a solid oven tray (pre-heat it if you can) and use one of the bottom slots. Don't overload it with ingredients.


What is the proper way to make a s'more?

I find that the best s'mores result from not setting them on fire. 

I like to hold the marshmallows about 3-4" above the flames while evenly rotating it to prevent burning.  The ideal s'more takes 3-4 minutes to create, has a light golden brown color with no black patches.  I also keep my Hershey's chocolate near the side of the flame so it gets warm and melts when combined with the pressure and weight of the marshmallows and graham crackers.

How do you make the soup in Guay-dteau Naam (i.e. soup noodles you could get in MBK or streets of Bangkok)?

There are two kinds of Thai noodle soup. The clear and the dark one. The recipe for the soup you had in Thailand is somewhat the heart of the dish and usually a secret to the vendor. Anyway, I can go over the basics from my perspective if I were to make noodle soup at home.

Clear soup
This is usually made of pork or chicken stock. The usual ingredients you'd add to the broth is light soy sauce, fish sauce, clear vinegar, chilli flakes, and a bit of sugar. If you want to make it a tom-yum noodle soup, just add lime juice, peanut bits, and more chilli.

Dark soup
Made of beef stock most of the time. Many places also add chicken/pork blood (liquid, not jelly-like form) into the soup right before serving to thicken the soup. The easiest way to make the soup is using beef broth paste (sold in a jar for Pho noodle soup). The usual ingredients are the same as the ones mentioned for the clear soup. Avoid dark soy sauce, it's mainly used to dry noodle dish, not the soup-based one. Another misconception for Thai noodle dish is putting basil in the soup. It's common for Pho but not common for Thai noodle. Another tip that's not really about the soup, we also serve this type of noodle soup with fried pork rind.

Basically, the soup in Thai noodle is made of broth + basic condiments. The condiments (light soy sauce, fish sauce, clear vinegar – sometimes with pickled chilli, chilli flakes, sugar) are also provided separately in a "spice tray" so that each customer can taste the soup with their own preference. Thai people don't ask for "spicy level" when ordering, that's another misconception. Any dish is mostly cooked with appropriate level of spiciness (chef's judgement) and then you have spice tray to make the dish taste however you want.