Wednesday, December 29, 2010

the flaky tart

while visiting my best friend by the jersey shore, i was still struggling with jet lag. so since we were both up early, she took me her favorite bakery, the flaky tart, in atlantic highlands. however b/c of the major snowstorm that hit the east coast, the bakery was practically empty.

but they did have peanut butter cookies that my friend really wanted me to try. it's really a peanut butter cookie sandwich. in between each sandwich is a nice layer of peanut butter. also, they had some croissants that just came out of the oven. they definitely don't skimp out on the butter. these croissants were beautifully flaky and buttery.

it's too bad they didn't have more baked good to try, but i guess that will be for next time.

Monday, December 27, 2010

stick a fork in me cuz i'm done.

my friend invited me over for her famous turkey. she makes the most succulent turkey that is NEVER dry. she rubs butter all over the exterior of the turkey before it goes into the oven giving it a beautiful golden color. also the butter gives the skin a nice crispy texture after it's done. inside she fills it with sliced oranges and other vegetables to keep the inside from drying out.

she knows exactly how long to bake her turkey in the oven. each time, it's perfection! there's never a dry piece of meat on this turkey. i guess after years of practice, she just knows how to prepare an amazing turkey.

she always makes a huge buffet of food! it felt like thanksgiving all over again. i enjoyed turkey, yams, ham, stuffing, homemade cranberry sauce and other goodies.

i went home like the turkey, stuffed and done.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

oh wegmans!

one of my favorite places to get a hoagie (sub) sandwich is wegmans supermarket. i always ask for the wheat bread, and today i chose danny's favorite (genoa salami, capicola, and spicy ham) with provolone cheese, sweet peppers, hot peppers, olives, pickles, lettuce tomato and bit of mayo and spicy mustard. that's the way i like it.

it's just that wonderful combination of italian meats in between a delicious sweet wheat roll.

food staging

my brother asked me to take some photos of his food at his restaurant, sammy chon's ktown bbq. in the past, all of my food photos are taken with my little canon digital camera, but he has a nice nikon digital SLR that he got for christmas. i had a lot of fun plating the food and taking photos of some of his dishes. i had to experiment with lighting but overall, i think these photos turned out nicely.

i know i could never be a food critic because i'm not a writer, but maybe i should look into becoming a food photographer. until then, i'll just continue to take photos with my little canon.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

a little dutch treat

last weekend, i went to birmingham to the largest german christmas market in the UK. it was pretty crazy. loads of people. at times i felt so claustrophobic.

but it was all worth b/c i was able to try poffertjes, a traditional dutch batter treat! they are little mini puffed pancakes. toppings include powdered sugar, nutella, fruits, etc. i chose to have it with nutella.

i was very intrigued by the pan they use to make them.

ooh.. can't wait to have poffertjes again.

Friday, December 17, 2010

deep fried in the UK

in the states mcdonald's stop deep frying their apple pies, but i found in england, they are still deep frying them!!!

i know the baked apple pie is healthier, but i used to loved the deep fried apple pies when i was kid.

and now, i can return to my childhood.

and they're 2 for 1 GBP (great british pound). that's almost like 2 for $1.

i took the 2 for 1 deal and saved the other one for later.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

for those who need gluten free

some of my colleagues are allergic to gluten (wheat) so life can be tough for them. they told me how they recently bought rice paper wraps, but they didn't know what to do with them. i told them that they could use them to make vietnamese spring rolls, but this was something foreign to them.

so i gave them a cooking lesson on making vietnamese spring rolls. Jen was an excellent sous chef helping me prepare all the veg (vegetables as they call it here in the UK). her husband, Ben, also helped us in the kitchen. the great thing was that we could find almost everything we needed except for thai basil. but we had our basics like fish sauce, hoisin sauce, mint, coriander (which is cilantro), limes, etc.

for the dipping sauce i used:
4 tsp fish sauce
1/4 cup water
2 tbsp fresh lime juice
1 clove garlic, minced
2 tbsp sugar

however, i adjusted the ingredients tasting it along the way. but if you start off with these ingredients, you can make your own great dipping sauce.

for the peanut sauce i used:
3 tbsp hoisin sauce
1 tbsp peanut butter
1 tsp finely chopped peanuts

it was a little thick so i added some water.

also, for another filler, we also had ground pork sauteed with garlic, salt and pepper.

here's a link to a video on how to roll up your spring rolls. the key is to NOT overstuff them and to use good quality rice paper that doesn't have cracks.

i really enjoyed prepping with them, but also giving them a lesson on making the spring rolls. of course, we ended up with too much food, but that just means leftovers! personally it was nice enjoying asian food.

hm.. i wonder what we'll cook next. maybe pho? i need some good pho in this kind of weather.

Sunday, December 12, 2010


i apologize for my lack of posts! I can't believe it's been a few weeks. does that mean food in england is scarce? not really.

the other weekend my housemates and i had an open house. my german housemade baked stollen, a traditional german fruit cake. But this is not like american fruit cake. it contains spices, dried fruit and nuts and sprinkled with powered sugar. some have marzipan in the center.

i like spreading a light layer of butter on top of a slice of stollen.

i need to get the recipe from my housemate, but she'll have to translate it first.