Monday, March 31, 2008

cultural differences

This was also a product of D's fishing trip. I'm so glad he saved it, even though most people in the boat were either throwing them out or using them as bait.

I pan-fried this mackerel, and it was really good, with the skin all crisp. Perfect with a squeeze of lemon.
[mackerel, salt, pepper, oil]


Sunday, March 30, 2008


D went fishing and managed to catch the biggest fish on the boat. This is what we did with it the next day.

steamed fish with ginger and scallions
One of D's dreams is to eat a whole steamed fish by himself. So, he had to share with my parents, and my high school friend, E, but there was still more than enough to go around. My parents pointed out that this would have been about $70 worth of fish in a restaurant. I didn't have a big enough pan for it, so I improvised with a roasting pan and foil and steamed it on the stovetop. My mom coached me through the whole process.
[whole fish, scallions, ginger, soy sauce, water, oil]

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Thursday, March 20, 2008

guest chef series #10: good home cooking

I love that my mom can whip up a 4-course Chinese meal in no time. We went over for dinner, and had hamachi, miso soup with hamachi (not shown), shrimp and snow peas, and beef and spinach.

mom's cooking
What's even more awesome is that she grew the snow peas herself. Everything was really good, as always. She's always embarrassed by her plating, but I think it looks great. She keeps such good color in her veggies, and of course, how it tastes is really what counts.

Beef with Sa-cha Sauce and Spinach
- 1/2 lb beef, cut into strips (any tender cut will do—ribeye, skirt steak)
- 3 tbsp sa-cha sauce (a Chinese sauce labeled as bbq sauce, but is nothing like American bbq sauce. It contains brill shrimp.)
- 1 tbsp soy sauce
- 1 large clove garlic, minced
- 2–3 slices ginger
- 1 lb spinach
- 1 tsp cornstarch plus 1/4 cup water (optional)

Combine beef, soy sauce, sa-cha sauce, garlic, and ginger in a large bowl. Let marinate 30 minutes. Heat a wok on high heat. Add oil, swirl until hot. Add the meat, and stir fry until cooked. Add the spinach, and stir fry together until spinach is wilted. Add the cornstarch slurry to thicken the sauce, if desired. Serve with rice.

[hamachi; soup: hamachi, miso, tofu, green onions, water; shrimp and snow peas: snow peas, shrimp, yellow peppers, garlic, oil; beef and spinach: beef, spinach, sa-cha sauce, soy sauce, pepper]

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Saturday, March 15, 2008

stinky cheese

A local restaurant supply importer has semi-annual warehouse sales. I went to check it out and came back with a lot of olive oil (really good stuff), chocolate, this langres cheese and a boudin.

langres cheese
This was really good, but really stinky. It had a nice creamy texture, and wasn't too salty.
[langres cheese, boudin sausage]


Friday, March 14, 2008

mega shrimp

My mom passed along these giant shrimp (i know, oxymoron). They were very sweet.

shrimp on pasta
I sautéed the shrimp in butter and garlic, and tossed the pasta in the butter-garlic sauce and garnished with cilantro and green onions.
[pasta, shrimp, garlic, butter, cilantro, green onions, salt, pepper]

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Thursday, March 13, 2008

way better than ****berry

Actually, I've never been to the aforementioned trendy "yogurt" chain, so I guess I can't really make that claim. But this was one ridiculously rich and creamy bowl of frozen yogurt.

frozen yogurt with blueberries
We had just gone to another version of the Southern California yogurt obsession, and I thought that I could probably make my own frozen yogurt and it would be pretty yummy. I took some Straus whole milk yogurt, strained it overnight with cheesecloth, and then mixed it with sugar and froze it in my ice cream maker. It was so good that I'd say that I could switch to frozen yogurt permanently if it were always this good.
[yogurt, sugar]


Wednesday, March 12, 2008

chicken adobo

I was browsing through my copy of How to Cook Everything, and this sounded really good.

chicken adobo
I guess this is a Filipino dish, and it's really good. It's a two-step cooking process, with a vinegar-soy braise followed by a quick turn on the grill. It's really good and pretty easy, so it will probably become a part of our regular eating.
[chicken thighs, soy sauce, vinegar, water, sugar, ginger, garlic]


Thursday, March 06, 2008


I'm not sure where I got this idea from, but it seemed like a good idea at the time.

open-faced polenta & proscuitto sandwiches
Overall, it was a bit on the salty side, but good with the blander greens. I basically pan-fried the polenta with parmesan cheese, so the cheese made a nice crisp crust under the polenta. And then laid a piece of piave and proscuitto on top.
[polenta, parmesan cheese, piave, proscuitto, greens, vingar, olive oil, salt, pepper]