Guess what everyone? I’m starting a freelancing job! It will be at an ad agency in the city, and I’ll be working part time, 3 days a week for now. It’s been a year and one month since I quit my last job (oh how time flies). Thankfully my time off hasn’t been wasted because I started this blog! If you’ve been following along, you know that I’ve been working on a bunch of house projects.
I am ready to go back to work though to stimulate my brain again! So grateful that it’s part time for now so I can slowly ease myself back to work. Excited for the opportunity! And don’t worry, I’ll still be posting on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays.
As promised, today’s post will be my chorizo mussels recipe. Remember that osso buco recipe? The leftover broth becomes so flavorful, and it’s perfect for this meal.
It takes less than 15 minutes to prep and 10 minutes to cook.
1. Clean mussels by running through cold water and debeard (pull out the little fuzzies/stringy bits that are stuck on the shell). Throw away any mussels that have open/broken shells.
2. Boil the osso buco leftover broth, then add the chorizo into the pot and boil for 5 minutes. Once you’re ready to eat, put the mussels unto the pot and cook until shells open (about 5-8 minutes).
3. Serve with bread and enjoy!
Pretty awesome that you can make two meals with one pot! Plus, this meal basically is prepped and cooked in less than 30 minutes. Can’t ask for an easier dinner!
Do you like mussels? How do you like them prepared? Is this something you can cook at home?
A friend came over once and made me osso buco. It was an amazing meal (though my kitchen was a disaster afterwards. Boys leave such crazy messes in the kitchen)! I couldn’t stop thinking about how yummy and tender the meat was, how creamy the polenta tasted, and how the amazing sauce tied it all together. Even better, the leftover pot of broth! I made chorizo mussels with it for dinner the next day. Two meals from one pot? Hell yes.
Both meals in one dinner? Double hell yes. I had a dinner party for 8 during Christmas time and this was the perfect meal! Get this, I had salad for the first course, osso buco for the second, mussels with bread for the third, and then dessert.
Osso buco is an Italian dish of braised veal shanks. Perhaps I’m in an Italian state of mind since I’ll be going to Italy in 2 weeks!
I’ll post my osso buco recipe today. On friday, come back for how to make chorizo mussels in the same broth!
This recipe is how I cook it, but others may prepare on a stove and then oven.
4 – 6 pieces of veal shanks (about 3 pounds)
1/2 cup diced carrot
1 medium onion, diced
4 cloves of garlic, chopped
3-4 sprigs fresh thyme
1 cup dry white wine
1-2 cups beef stock
1 (14.5 oz) can of diced tomatoes
Salt and pepper for tasting
Essential Cooking Tool: Pressure Cooker
Invest in a pressure cooker and I bet you’ll never use your crock pot again!
1. Dust the veal shanks lightly with flour. Heat up butter in your pressure cooker until melted, and brown the veal shanks on medium/medium-high heat. Set veal shanks aside.
2. Add chopped garlic, carrots, and onion to the pressure cooker, and stir until onion is tender. Add the wine and scrap up all the browned bits in the cooker. Simmer for 15 minutes.
3. Pour in the tomatoes and beef stock, and add thyme. Season with salt and pepper. Then add the veal back into the pressure cooker.
4. Cook the veal in the pressure cooker for 45 minutes (according to your manual’s instructions).
5. Once cooked, serve with mashed potatoes or polenta.
Polenta directions: Bring 6 cups of water to a boil, add 2 teaspoons of salt, and whisk in 1 and 3/4 cups of cornmeal. Reduce the heat to low and cook until the mixture thickens and the cornmeal is tender. Stir often. Turn off the heat, and add 3 tablespoons of butter until combined and melted.
It’s a great meal to make when you have guests since you can easily make a huge pot of food. It’s also a fancy meal that will leave your guests impressed.
Have you ever had osso buco before? Where and did you like it? Is this a recipe you can recreate?
Remember to come back on Friday for my chorizo mussels using leftover broth from the osso buco.
You’re in for a treat this week! I’ll be featuring Cantonese-styled Chinese dishes. These recipes are near and dear to me because I grew up eating this stuff. Today’s post will be a recipe for steamed egg, and Friday I’ll post a recipe for steamed pork. These are Chinese comfort foods, cheap to cook, and easy to make. It’s one of those dishes you order at authentic Chinese restaurants. Honestly, only someone that is well-versed in Chinese food would get it.
This dish is a staple steamed egg dish. If you didn’t grow up with it, it’s just egg to you. You don’t necessary think to order it at a restaurant, but when you see it on the menu, you want it! But it’s not just egg.To Chinese families, it’s beyond that. It’s childhood memories. It’s knowing that steamed egg goes great with rice. It’s also a craving. It’s like being able to bake french fries at home, but isn’t it so much better buying it from McDonald’s?
Anyhoo, I got this recipe off a friend who posted their dinner on Facebook. Once I saw his picture of the steamed egg dish, I private messaged him because I had to know how to make it for my husband. Egg is one of his favorite foods, and ice cream… and steak… and pizza… and Snickers… I digress. Egg!
This recipe is super easy! Let’s do this!
Chinese Steamed EggRecipe
4 large eggs (straight from the fridge)
Half a can of chicken broth
Teaspoon of oil
1/2 teaspoon of soy sauce
Chopped green scallions or cilantro for garnish (optional)
You can makeshift a steamer by simply adding 1-2 inches of water in a large pan, something to raise your plate (a towel, a metal stand) and then place your steaming plate on top. Basically you do not want water in your steaming plate.
1. Beat your eggs thoroughly in your steaming plate and add half the can of chicken broth. Whisk until combined well.
2. Cover the plate with plastic wrap to prevent bubbles from forming due to the condensation.
3. Steam the eggs on medium-high heat for 8-10 minutes, until mixture is not runny.
4. In a pan, heat up oil and soy sauce.
5. Once the eggs are cooked, remove the plastic wrap and sprinkle the chopped green scallions. Finally drizzle the oil and soy sauce onto the eggs.
Pro-status: If you loooove clams with this dish (a-to-the-men for whoever came up with this). Steam the clams first until they are half open. Then pour the chicken broth and egg mixture onto the clams and follow directions 2-5.
My father in law loves this dish. And MG, he is able to eat just this for dinner and he would be happy. It’s not just egg. It’s the joy you get from eating it, a happy belly! It’s the childhood memory of your mom letting you beat the eggs for this dish. It’s about the family dinners where everyone had time to sit around the table to enjoy dinner.
Have you had this dish before? What are your thoughts?
Last week it was rainy and chilly. This week is a whole different story! It’s so warm out, reaching 80°F in the afternoon and low 70’s in the evening. We actually have our air conditioning on!
I’m still running and training for my half-marathon (happening in August). It’s such a love/hate relationship. During the first two miles I’m always questioning “Why!! Why do you do this to yourself? How am I going to continue?” Then the next two miles are usually pretty easy going. After the run, I love running and think to myself “Seriously a great work out. I can certainly do this again!”
Surely, the entire thing happens all over again, day after day! Now it’s so hot out that I can’t even run during lunch time. Evening running is great though! It’s a bit cooler, more people are out and about, and it’s right before dinner so I can be super hungry after running (yup, food is my motivation for running). No judgement.
Since we’re running in the evenings now, it’s important to make a quick and easy dinner to end the night. I’ll grill/pan-fry meat, and we’ll also have a salad. Today I’ll share with you a delicious and scrumptious broccoli salad recipe. It’s so easy; simply get the ingredients and mix it all together!
Simple Broccoli Salad
2 medium broccoli crowns
1 apple, diced*
1 cup dried cranberries
1 cup sunflower seeds
1 cup bacon bits
1/4 cup poppy seed dressing
*Substitute candied walnuts for the sweet-tooth
Directions: Cut the broccoli crowns into bite-sized pieces. Toss in the remaining ingredients and combine well.
^^^ The perfect bite
It’s extremely easy and extremely delicious! It’s also a great salad to make for potlucks because you can prepare in large quantities at a cheap cost. If you love crunch, then this is the perfect recipe for you!
Is this something you can make? What are some of your favorite salad recipes?
This week has been dragging along… The week started with a 5 mile run and 2 hot yoga classes, so I was proud of what I accomplished. Then MG and I got into a huge fight, he flew to Chicago for work, and I just ate a lot of carbs to make me feel better. And then surprise! MG sent a delivery of flowers while he was on his work trip. I’m spoiled by him, I really am. I’ll make him a scrumptious dinner tomorrow night, and we’re probably going somewhere fun this weekend.
I have another delicious recipe for you today! It’s one of those recipes that are my clean-out-the-fridge dinners. I’ll whip up this enchilada casserole after we have “taco night” and an abundance of leftovers. During make your own taco night, there’s usually no more meat left, but lots of beans, tortillas, and a package of shredded cheese. Is that the same with you?
When my friend wouldn’t take the leftovers, I challenged myself to use the ingredients so it wouldn’t go to waste. With some enchilada sauce, ground beef, garlic, and onions, I created my leftover enchilada casserole.
Leftover Enchilada Casserole servings: 8
6-8 medium tortillas, cut into stripes
1.5 pounds of ground beef
1 medium onion, diced
2 cloves of garlic, minced
2 cups of enchilada sauce
1 cup of black beans
1-2 cups of sour cream
2 cups of grated cheese (I used cheddar and Monterrey Jack)
Salt for tasting
1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
2. Cut the tortillas in a half and into strips. Drizzle olive oil on a skillet over medium heat, and cook a few of the tortilla strips until crisp on each side and set aside on a plate lined with a paper towel. You may need to do cook the tortilla strips in batches until all remaining tortillas are cooked.
3. In a large pan, add olive oil and fry the onion and garlic for 2 minutes. Then add the ground beef and stir fry for 8-10 minutes. Drain the stir fry to remove drippings.
4. Now take a 9×13 casserole dish, and spread 1/2 cup of enchilada sauce to coat the bottom of the dish. Then add slices of crispy tortilla as the second layer, slightly overlapping. Layer on ground beef/garlic/onion mixture evenly, then another layer of enchilada sauce. Spread on sour cream and sprinkle cheese.
5. Repeat layers! Layer on the rest of the ingredients to your desire but end with cheese. Mine goes something like this: enchilada sauce, tortillas, beef, sauce, cheese & cream, tortillas, beef, beans, sauce, cheese & cream, sauce, beef, tortillas, cheese.
6. Bake in the oven until cheese has melted (about 20 minutes).
One great thing about this casserole is that you can make this recipe and freeze it so that the leftovers do not go bad. Once prepared, wrap it up in aluminum foil and stick it into the freezer. The night before you want to make the casserole, put it in the fridge to defrost, and simply bake before you eat it. Baking time may be a bit longer so that all layers are thoroughly heated (approximately 30-40 minutes).
Another awesome thing, use whatever ingredients you like – beans, lettuce, tomatoes, whatever you’ve got! Like I said, use your leftovers and clean out your fridge.
Such a great way to finish up leftovers, and also a great dinner idea if you have friends/neighbors/family members come over on a whim. Who says you can’t serve a guest leftovers!
What are some of your favorite clean-out-the-fridge/leftover meals?
Have a great weekend!
Pro-tip: I always keep ground beef and chicken breast in the freezer. These are very versatile ingredients with lots of dinner options. Just throw them into the freezer, defrost day-of, and use it for dinner!
Happy April! Did anyone have any good April Fool’s Day jokes played on them? Share!
I woke up and told MG I had a stomach ache and couldn’t go to a lunch date with him. He was worried until I shouted “April Fool’s!” Then he told me there are 31 days in March so unbeknownst to me, it wasn’t 4/1. There goes my joke. And yes, that’s as creative as I can get for these kinds of things!
On another note, what’s going on with these rainstorms in the Bay Area? I’m happy that it’s raining since we didn’t have a winter, but winter in April? That’s cray! It’s gotten chilly outside so soup is a must to warm bellies!
I’ve noticed that my cooking style is simple. I like to use things that you would purchase regularly and things that you would find in your fridge. Once in a while a recipe will call for a specific herb or ingredient where you need to go to the store, but I hate when I don’t even know what the ingredient looks like or tastes like! Here’s a recipe where you’ll recognize all the ingredients, yay!
Also, it’s worth mentioning that I used chicken for this recipe to make the soup heartier. This can be a vegetarian dish by simply eliminating the chicken!
Red Curry Noodle Soup 4 servings, cooking time 15 minutes
1 chicken breast, cooked and shredded (optional)
3 garlic cloves
2 tablespoons fresh ginger
2 tablespoons red curry paste
2 tablespoons coconut oil
1/2 onion, chopped
4 cups chicken broth (if vegetarian, use vegetable broth)
3 cups coconut milk
8 ounces of your favorite noodles (rice or wonton noodles are a great choice)
Handful of bok choy and napa cabbage (honestly, any of your favorite veggies will work here)
Fresh cilantro, green scallions, red pepper flakes to garnish (all optional)
Salt for tasting
1. If you’re using wonton noodles (which I did), boil water and cook the noodles in the separate pot. Then drain and set aside. I cook this in a separate pot because the flour thickens the liquid.
2. Combine garlic cloves, ginger, curry paste, and coconut oil in a blender and make a paste (I have a Magic Bullet).
3. In a large pot, heat the paste on medium-high heat, frying the paste for 2 minutes. Add the vegetables, chopped onion, and a pinch of salt, and stir fry for 2 minutes. Add the coconut milk and chicken broth to the pot, and scrape up any bits from the bottom of the pot.
4. Once the soup has come to a boil, add in the cooked/shredded chicken and the noodles. Simmer for 5 minutes.
5. Serve and garnish with cilantro and sliced green scallions. If you want heat, sprinkle red pepper flakes.
Making the curry paste
My veggies – onion, bok choy, napa cabbage
Want some spice?
Yum, yum, yum! Nothing beats a hearty, hot bowl of noodle soup on chilly day. I kept the noodles and vegetables in line with the Asian theme, but feel free to use your favorite vegetables.
If you have leftovers, even better! The soup is extremely flavorful the next day. Store the noodles in a separate container so that it doesn’t absorb all the liquids.
Is this something you can make? What are some other red curry recipes you love?
If you’ve been reading along, then you saw my tasty Asian green beans recipe. In that post, I mentioned that I have the perfect pairing for them on Friday. And today is the day! I love making green beans with my homestyle chicken nuggets. Yum!
I don’t know anyone that complains about chicken nuggets, crispy on the outside, bite-sized, and easy to eat. If you have kids that are picky eaters, then this recipe is seriously perfect for you. Another advantage, this is a healthy option for chicken nuggets!
I’m always trying to figure out what to do with chicken breast. Simply seasoning and cooking it just won’t do for me – too bland. I can’t eat chicken with a fork and knife. It’s not steak! One day I chopped up chicken breast meat, and I knew immediately that I was going to bread it and pan fry it!
Homestyle Chicken Nuggets
1 chicken breast, cut into bite-sized pieces
Seasoning: soy sauce, garlic salt, pepper
1 1/2 cup panko crust
1/2 cup flour (add teaspoon and salt and teaspoon of pepper into flour)
1 egg, beaten
Olive oil for pan-frying
1. Season the chicken breast with a tablespoon of soy sauce, 1/2 teaspoon of garlic salt, and 1/2 teaspoon of pepper. Mix well.
2. This is the batter process. First dip a piece of meat into the flour, then into the egg, and lastly into the panko crust. Ensure that in each process the meat is evenly coated with batter.
3. Heat oil on medium-low heat in a large pan (oil should coat the bottom of the pan). Drop each piece of meat onto the pan slowly so you don’t get oil splash back. Each piece of meat should have it’s own personal space, so that it doesn’t stick to other pieces of meat. Cook for 3 minutes until golden brown, and then flip and cook for another 3 minutes.
4. Once cooked, set meat aside on a paper towel to absorb oil. Let it rest for 2-3 minutes and eat!
Warning: highly temptatious. Remember delayed gratification? Yeah… I don’t either ^^^
Perfect with green beans!
^^^ Totally cleaned plate!
Chicken nuggets make me feel like a kid again. With a happy belly. But kids don’t do dishes after dinner! So just lick your plate clean, wipe it with a paper towel, and you’re good to go!
Who wants some? What is your favorite way of cooking chicken breast?
If you haven’t noticed yet, I’m big on cooking at home. Now only does it save money, it’s also always a healthier option. When you cook, it’s less oil, less butter, and less fat since you’re in control on the ingredients.
I almost always have a side of veggies with every dinner meal. Because I grew up in a Chinese household, there’s always been a variety of foods on the table to be eaten family style. Usually our house had one meat dish and two different plates of vegetables, and of course rice, for a family of four. So I love variety when it comes to dinner. When I cook for two, I always have one meat dish and one veggie dish (we try to go without rice too). This week I’ll share with you a meal that I cook for MG and myself (chicken and veggies). We’ll start out with the veggie dish first – green beans!
Green beans are my favorite vegetable. I love the crunch of the bean and the squeak between your teeth when eating. I basically always make this recipe when I have green beans – it’s my go-to! It’s Asian because of the soy sauce and oyster sauce, and the sauces make the beans extremely tasty. Another big plus, it’s a 3 step dish!
16 oz package of green beans
5 cloves of garlic, minced
1 green scallion, chopped
Olive oil for cooking
Salt and pepper for taste
1. This is my tip: steam or boil the green beans first so they cook faster! I like to boil because it only takes 5-7 minutes. Then drain and set aside.
2. Add a teaspoon of olive oil to a pan on medium-high heat, and cook the garlic and scallions until crisp and golden, but not burnt. Now add the drained green beans to the pan – I love the sizzle in this process!
3. Sprinkle salt and pepper, add a teaspoon of soy sauce, a teaspoon of sesame oil, and a tablespoon of oyster sauce. Mix it into the beans until beans are thoroughly coated. Serve right away!
Get this at any Asian market – it’s also delicious just eating it with rice!
Those crunch garlic/scallion clumps are deee-li-ciousss ^^^
Yeah, we basically licked up all the sauce!
What’s your favorite vegetable? Do you have any veggie recipes to share? I’m always on the lookout for new vegetable recipes!
Stay tuned on Friday for my chicken recipe to pair with the green beans!
To continue our celebration of warmer weather, here’s another one of my specialty ice cream recipes. Ginger ice cream!
Malt ice cream reminds my husband of his childhood. Ginger ice cream does that for me.
On nights where I couldn’t sleep, my mom would heat up milk, add a piece of ginger with a bit of sugar to make the perfect cup of warm milk. My sister, my mom, and I would sit around the table, drinking milk and eating cookies. Then we’d say our good nights and have a restful sleep. My dad is the lactose intolerant person in our house, but he couldn’t stay away from a cup of warm, sweet, ginger milk (obviously just a small cup). Those were the good days!
This recipe is near and dear to me. Not only does it remind me of my childhood, but ginger also has many health benefits (builds your immune system, nausea relief, gas relief, anti-inflammatory).
My mother-in-law loves this recipe too!
Ginger Ice Cream
1/2 cup of sugar
1 cup of milk
3 inch piece of ginger (cut into 1/2 inch pieces).
2 cups of heavy whipping cream (divided)
1. In a large bowl, whisk 2 eggs until light & fluffy (about 2 minutes). Then add sugar and 1 cup of heavy whipping cream, and combine.
2. On medium-low heat, heat up the milk until simmering. Add ginger and simmer for 5 minutes. For those that LOVE ginger, feel free to grate some of that root into the milk mixture. Set milk aside and stir in 1 cup of heavy whipping cream. Strain out the ginger.
3. Whisking continuously, pour the warm milk into the egg mixture slowly. Do NOT cook the eggs, so whisk, whisk, whisk!
4. Set the bowl in the fridge for an hour or until thoroughly chilled (can last up to two days).
5. Pour the mixture into an ice cream maker and follow manufacturer’s directions. Transfer into a covered container and put into the freezer (can keep up to 1 week in the freezer).
The perfect scoop!
What’s a flavor that reminds you of your childhood? What’s the story behind that flavor?
It’s so beautiful outside in the Bay Area! Blue, cloudless skies. Slight breeze. Sun sets late at 8pm now.
The first day of Spring is this week, on March 20. To celebrate the warmer weather, it’s ice cream week! I’ll be featuring my specialty ice cream recipes. Today it’s malt ice cream!
If you’re like me, you’re wondering, “What does malt even taste like?” Think Whoppers. Think Maltesers. If you’re like my husband, you immediately think of those childhood days when your mom mixes malt into your milk. And you know it’s one of your favorite things.
While in San Francisco last month, MG and I wanted some ice cream. There are copious ice cream parlors to choose from in the city, but we decided on Mr. and Mrs. Miscellaneous located in the Dogpatch. Good choice because this place is adorable! Think super hipster environment, with tatted up servers, a few baked goods, and ice cream with a super creamy, rich texture. When we walked into the parlor, malt was on the flavor menu, and it was immediately decided by MG that we would get this flavor. Great decision!
After that ice cream date, MG added malt to the list of “ice cream flavors we must make.” And this was now at the top of the list. After many batches of malt ice cream, I’ve perfected the recipe and am ready to share it with you!
1. Heat milk in a pot on low until simmering, then add Ovaltine. Mix well until all Ovaltine is combined. Turn off heat, add a pinch of salt, and stir. Set milk aside.
2. Whisk the egg yolks until light and fluffy. Then add sugar. Whisk until thoroughly mixed. Pour in heavy cream.
3. This is the tricky part because you do not want the eggs to cook. Pour in the warm milk slowly into the egg mixture, while whisking continuously.
4. Refrigerate the ice cream mixture for 1 hour until thoroughly chilled (can keep up to 2 days in the fridge).
5. Pour the mixture into an ice cream maker and follow manufacturer’s directions. Transfer into a covered container and put into the freezer (can keep up to 1 week in the freezer).