Wednesday, July 28, 2010

sweet nectarines

one of the things i'll miss about living in southern california are the fruit trees in my backyard. again, this summer, our white nectarine tree fruited delicious fruit!! we've mainly been freezing them b/c there's so many, and i have been hesitant to eat them right off the tree. we've discovered many worms inside the nectarines. so i half them, pit them, slice them, then freeze them.

for those who aren't familiar with freezing fruit i recommend laying the fruit on a cookie sheet. after it's frozen, then place the fruit in a freezer bag. if you do this before hand, the fruit sticks to each other, and it's very difficult to separate the fruit.

i realize that the photo makes them look huge, but they're actually not that big. but hey, at least it's organic. no pesticides!

recently, i did make nectarine muffins again like last year. it was a cool enough day to utilize the oven. this recipe makes about 22-23 muffins.

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup white sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 teaspoons baking powder
2/3 cup vegetable oil
2 egg
1 cup milk
1 large ripe peach - peeled, pitted and diced (you can add as well)
1 1/2 cups very ripe nectarine, pitted and diced
raw sugar

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Grease muffin cups or line with paper
muffin liners.
2. In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, salt and baking powder. Add vegetable oil, egg and milk;
mix well. Fold in diced peach and nectarine. Fill each muffin tin 2/3 with muffin mix.
Sprinkle a raw sugar onto the top of each uncooked muffin.
3. Bake in preheated oven for 13 minutes. Serve warm or cool.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

katsu don!

so i'm learning more cooking from my roommate's family than my roommate, but i'm not complaining. her brother made us japanese katsu don which i've had in restaurants. he learned how to make it from a japanese cooking show while living in japan.

it's basically pork (or chicken) covered in panko crumbs that sits on top of rice. you deep fry the pork first. then you place the meat in a small skillet with a chicken brot stew made of dark chicken meat, onions, soy sauce, and some other ingredients. i need him to write it all down. the chicken stew is made in another pot. you crack an egg on top of the meat and let it cook as much as you like, and place it on top of the rice.

it was so delicious! you can see that he likes a large portion for himself. his plate was fully covered in white rice. you can't really do brown rice with this dish. it may be a healthy alternative. i must admit, i've been eating a lot more white rice since her family has been in town.

i'll have to try and make this dish myself before i leave for england.

Monday, July 19, 2010

taiwanese breakfast pancake

having my roommate's sister-in-law has opened my eyes to the world of taiwanese food! i'm thoroughly enjoying the variety of taiwanese cuisine. one of my new favorite breakfast dishes is scallion panckes with scrambled egg sprinkled inside with dried pork and cheddar cheese.

you can find the scallion pancakes at most chinese supermarkets in the freezeer section. first you heat up the pancake on a frying pan with a little bit of oil. then after it browns slightly on both sides, take it off the frying pan. then pour into the pan scrambled eggs with finely chopped green onions. once the eggs are one, remove from the pan. then put the pancake back onto the pan, add the scrambled eggs. sprinkle on top the dried pork and cheddar cheese. roll the pancake together. remove from the pan and place on a plate.

slice the pancake into small sections. sprinkle on top a little bit of maggi sauce (vietnamese soy sauce). then enjoy! the cheese adds a delicious creamy taste.

i hope i can find these pancakes in england!

Friday, July 16, 2010

chicken galbi

if you're wanting to try something different, i recommend mapo dahk galbi (chicken galbi) in koreatown on olympic blvd. (3090 w olympic blvd). the sign is in korean and the english part is very small so use your gps or google maps. also you can valet which is only $2.00. gotta love parking in ktown. also, they're only open at dinner. the service might not be the best, but when i'm in ktown, i don't go for service. i go for the food.

my friend brought me here a few years ago, and i always enjoy introducing new people to this place. the other weekend my friends were visiting from the bay area. she loves trying new kinds of food so we decided to go there.

their menu is limited so don't expect to be able to choose from a variety of food. their specialty is the chicken galbi. it's marinated spicy chicken that they fry at your table along with korean sweet potato slices, rice cake, and cabbage. then they add perilla leaves and more spicy sauce. after you've eaten most of the chicken, they make fried rice by adding rice, some chopped up kimchi as well as dried seaweed.

we were so stuffed we just took the fried rice to go. my friends were very happy with mapo chicken galbi.

Monday, July 12, 2010

taiwanese hot pot

the other day, joy was craving hot pot. so we went to 99 ranch and got all the ingredients needed to enjoy taiwanese hot pot on a cool sunday evening.

the soup broth is different from other style hot pots. she made the broth from cabbage, onions and corn.

we had all kinds of vegetables from button mushrooms, enoki mushrooms, baby bok choy, etc. what i felt was different though was the addition of fish balls, egg dumplings, beef wrapped in fish cake, and lots of other delicious goodies. as we kept putting different things into the pot, everything simmered. i would search for different things to try. it was like fishing for food treasures!

and joy made a dipping sauce out of taiwanese style bbq sauce, garlic, onions and soy sauce. it was very tasty.

i have to say. i think the taiwanese style hot pot is my favorite style of hot pot. lots of yummy things to eat besides the typical meat and vegetables.

and we took advantage of the cool weather, and we dined outside. i love al fresco dining.

hopefully we can enjoy it again while joy is here.

Friday, July 9, 2010

steamed fish, taiwanese style!

one of my favorite chinese dishes is steamed fish. the chinese really know how to prepare a delicious fish. recently i learned from my roommate's sister. since she's from taiwan i will assume it's more taiwanese style, but i can tell you that it's good!

here's the recipe.

1 – striped bass fresh (or any white fish like snapper, flounder)

2 green onions – cut into 1 inch pieces

Ginger – julienne

Cilantro –take off stems, leave whole leaves

Red pepper (spicy one) sliced

Soy sauce

Chinese Rice wine (michui)

1. Pat fish dry with paper towel and salt on both sides. Place fish on plate with steamer tray underneath.

2. Add green onions, ginger, red pepper, soy sauce, rice wine. ( i don't have exact measurements for the soy sauce and rice wine, but basically pour over fish.)

3. Steam for 8 minutes (med size fish, 15 min for large fish).

4. In separate small frying pan, heat oil.

5. Add sizzling oil to fish before serving.

Monday, July 5, 2010

happy july 4th

i decided to host a july 4th bbq at my place this year. the last time i hosted a july 4th bbq was 2004! i had a lot of fun preparing for the bbq. for dessert, i made this wave the flag cake. everyone loved it.

here's the recipe and video link as well:

4 cups fresh strawberries, divided
1-1/2 cups boiling water
1 pkg. (6 oz.) or 2 pkg. (3 oz. each) JELL-O Gelatin, any red flavor
ice cubes
1 cup cold water
1 pkg. (12 oz.) prepared pound cake, cut into 10 slices
1-1/3 cups blueberries, divided
1 tub (8 oz.) COOL WHIP Whipped Topping, thawed
2 pkgs (8 oz.) Philadelphia cream cheese

SLICE 1 cup strawberries; cut remaining strawberries in half. Set aside.

ADD boiling water to gelatin mix in large bowl; stir 2 min. until completely dissolved. Add enough ice cubes to cold water to measure 2 cups. Add to gelatin; stir until ice is melted. Refrigerate 5 min. or until slightly thickened (consistency of unbeaten egg whites). Meanwhile, cover bottom of 13x9-inch dish with cake slices. Add sliced strawberries and 1 cup blueberries to thickened gelatin; stir gently. Spoon over cake slices.

REFRIGERATE 4 hours or until firm. Beat 2 pkg. (8 oz. each) softened PHILADELPHIA Cream Cheese and 1/4 cup sugar with whisk or mixer until well blended; gently stir in COOL WHIP. Spread over gelatin layer. Arrange strawberry halves on COOL WHIP mixture for stripes of flag and remaining blueberries for stars. Keep refrigerated.

happy july 4th!