Welcome to the Polyphagous Dragon!

Hearty greetings from the Rainbow Dragon to all visitors to my digital kitchen in the blogosphere!

As my blog title suggests, these pages contain a wild mix of recipes which sample a wide range of flavours and cultures. I won't even try to apply an over-arching theme to this project other than to say that every dish is about creating good food!

The Polyphagous Dragon offers multiple options for site navigation in the sidebar panels. Use the Contents box to search for recipes by dish type, the Blog Archives to search for a specific recipe by title or the Ingredients Index to pull up all recipes that feature a particular ingredient. See also my Cooking Philosophy notes for further insights.

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Sunday, July 6, 2008

Shrimp Fresh Rolls

These are a wonderful alternative to egg rolls or spring rolls -- loads of flavour without the deep frying.

Shrimp Fresh Rolls

  • rice paper
  • bean vermicelli
  • cooked, peeled shrimp
  • spring onions, cut into thin strips
  • julienned carrots
  • fresh mint leaves

Ingredients for Fresh Rolls


Soak vermicelli in boiling water for a few minutes to soften.
Strain vermicelli.
Soak one sheet of rice paper in boiling water until soft.
Remove from water and place flat on a work surface.
Place a thin line of vermicelli across the centre of the rice paper.
Top with onions, carrots, mint and shrimp.
Preparing Fresh Rolls
Tuck in the side edges and roll up.
Repeat with additional sheets of rice paper.
Serve immediately with a spicy peanut sauce.

Shrimp Fresh Rolls with Peanut Sauce

Crab & Avocado Salad

This salad is super simple to make and a wonderful appetizer for any seafood dish.

Crab & Avocado Salad

  • cooked crab meat*
  • avocado
  • lime juice


Crab flavoured pollack works too, if you cannot get the real thing or have guests with allergies to shellfish.


Peel and pit avocado.
Cut into small cubes.
Sprinkle lime juice over avocado.
Flake crab meat.
Mix crab and avocado together.
Serve immediately in small bowls.

Cinnamon Rollups

This is a quick little treat I designed for using up extra scraps of pastry.

Cinnamon Rollup

  • leftover pastry dough
  • ground cinnamon
  • sugar


Roll out pastry dough into thin sheet.
Mix equal quantities of sugar and cinnamon together.
Spread cinnamon sugar mixture over the pastry.
Cinnamon Rollup
Roll pastry up into a tight roll.
Cinnamon Rollup
Bake at 450°F for 12 minutes.
Enjoy hot out of the oven.

Cinnamon Rollup

Cherry Pie

Yes, the dragon can bake a cherry pie!

Cherry Pie

  • shortcrust or whole wheat pastry
  • 4 cups pitted cherries
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons corn starch
  • 1/4 cup lime juice


Dissolve sugar into water in a large saucepan.
Add cherries.
Bring to a boil.
Cover and simmer for five minutes.
Strain off 1/4 cup juice into a small bowl.
Add cornstarch to juice, stirring until well blended.
Pour cornstarch/juice mixture back over cherries.
Add lime juice.
Return to heat and cook until juice has thickened. (1 - 2 minutes)
Cherry Pie Filling

Roll pastry out into two disks of appropriate size to line and cover your pie plate.
Grease and flour pie plate.
Line with larger circle of pastry, trimming off any excess.
Fill with cherry mixture.
Top with second pastry disk.
Pinch edges of the pastry together.
Pierce centre with a knife or fork to allow steam to escape.
Bake at 450°F for 30 minutes.

Enjoy hot out of the oven or cooled to room temperature.

Cherry Pie à la Mode

Shortcrust Pastry

Rolled thinly, these quantities will make one covered 9 inch pie.
For a thicker pastry, make a double batch for a covered pie or one batch for a pie base only.

  • 8 oz flour
  • 4 oz butter
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • cold water to mix


Crumble butter into flour using a fork or potato masher.
Short Crust Pastry

Add cold water, a few teaspoons at a time.
Mix water in immediately, using hands to incorporate the final bits of flour.
Pastry should be just wet enough to hold together in a ball.
Short Crust Pastry

Turn dough out onto a floured surface.
Roll out to desired shape and size.
Grease and flour pie plate.
Line pie plate with pastry.

For pies with unbaked fillings:

Line pastry with tin foil and fill with dried beans or other baking beads.
Bake blind 25 minutes at 450°F.
Fill as desired.
Bake as per recipe for filling.

For pies with baked fillings:

Partial baking blind may be required.
See individual recipes for instructions.