Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Pack a Picnic Lunch. Enjoy it at the park or beach.

The weather was nice, so I packed a simple lunch to enjoy at the park with my friend and her son. The lunch was a turkey sandwich on whole wheat bread, corn on the cob, and a pasta salad with bell peppers, asparagus, and corn.

I sauteed the veggies individually and then combined it with the pasta, added salt, pepper and some olive oil. I packed a side of Italian dressing to add a little more flavor.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Yakisoba Noodles w/ Shrimp & Veggies

Veggies of choice (Snow peas & red bell peppers)
1 Tbsp Oyster Sauce
1 Tbsp Soy Sauce
1 Tbsp Canola
1/4 cup water or more if needed

Cook shrimp in oyster sauce.  When cooked, remove from pan.  Saute veggies and remove from pan.  Add oil in pan, add yakisoba noodles and then add the water.  Let sit in pan until noodles become soft. Once noodles are soft, continue to sautee them them and add soy sauce.  Once noodles are ready, add veggies and cooked shrimp to pan. 

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Peach Tartlets

I've been getting so much free fruit this summer that it's becoming a challenge for me to eat them all. In this case, it would be some super ripe peaches (I used 2 for this recipe). I try my best not to waste good food, so I decide to make some peach tartlets.

They turned out really good, like something you'd pick up at a bakery - yum. The boyfriend-wouldn't-even-share-his-last-bite-with-me good.

Start out making the dough for the pastry crust.

Pastry Dough:
1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 cup butter
5 Tbsp. cold water

Combine flour, sugar and salt in medium bowl. Cut in butter until mixture is size of fine crumbs. Stir in water until dough forms with wooden spoon. Knead dough just until it forms a ball with some flour. Shape into flat circle, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate (I left it in the fridge overnight).

Peach Filling:
2 large ripe peaches (I don't like peach peel, so I got rid of it, but it's perfectly fine if you want to leave the peel on your peaches)
1 Tbsp sugar
1 tsp pumpkin spice
1 Tbsp butter

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a large skillet, heat butter. When it foams, add sliced peaches and sugar. cook until peaches are soft, flipping once. Set aside.

Roll out dough and cut into small circles. Using your fingers, fold up the edges of the dough.

Place the peaches into the dough along with a couple spoonfuls of liquid.

* brush with eggwash (I forgot to do this) and sprinkle with a little sugar (optional)

Bake in oven until crust is brown, about 35 minutes.

Let cool and enjoy!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

It's HOT out!

We're experiencing record breaking heat in the Bay Area.  What's better than some sweet and juicy watermelon chilled in the fridge overnight?

Friday, August 20, 2010

Cantaloupe Sorbet

My aunt gave me this cantaloupe over a week ago. Can you believe she paid (only) 50 cents for it at the local farmers market? I completely forgot it's been hanging out in the fridge so when I saw it, I had to do something with it fast before it goes to waste. I knew that I wouldn't be able to eat the entire cantaloupe by myself, so I thought I'd use it to make a sorbet. Because I love sorbets and it's so fun using my stand mixer!

Simple Syrup (Sugar, water, and some light corn syrup), 2 tablespoons of lime juice and a cantaloupe. The one I had was pretty large, so I used a little over half of it.

- Make simple syrup (combine water, sugar, corn syrup over med heat until sugar is dissolved)
- Let syrup cool down
- In the meantime, clean and cube cantaloupe (the sweeter, the better)
- Puree the cantaloupe (I used about 4 cups of puree)
- Combine simple syrup mixture and add lime juice
- Put batter in a covered container and refrigerate overnight

This is what the batter looks like in the morning:

- Mix it up real quick and put batter in your ice cream maker following manufacturer's instructions

- Freeze for a couple hours. Serve and enjoy on a hot day.

Crispy Sweet Potato Chips

I decided to use the slicer attachment today. I had 2 sweet potatoes hanging around in the kitchen, so I decided to make sweet potato chips. It's really simple. Heat oven to 325 degrees. Slice as thin as possible. Lay them out on baking sheet, spray with olive oil, lightly salt them (using sea salt). You could also sprinkled some paprika on them (instead), but I decided not to do that. Pop in oven for 20 minutes. You can flip over if you like, but they were fine either way. I had to do 3 batches because I only have one baking sheet.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Cinnamon Rolls for Breakfast

Since I couldn't have eggs for breakfast like I usually do, I made cinnamon rolls.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Sunday Night Pistachio Ice Cream Success

Oh. My. Goodness. I feel like I can make anything at this point. The pistachio ice cream I made last night (and will eat more of later) was so good. I think it's just as good or even better than B&R's. Hehe. I used the recipe posted on epicurious.com, but I think that was taken from Bon Appetit - regardless, the recipe can be found here.

I used less almond extract than the recipe called for (used 1/4 teaspoon instead of 1/2 teaspoon) and I think it was the right call. I've had good experiences in the kitchen this past weekend, and it makes me very happy :)

The ingredients:
2 cups milk
1 cup whipping cream
4 large egg yolks
1 cup shelled pistachios
1 cup shelled pistachios grinded with 1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon almond extract

After cooking the milk and pistachio & sugar until the sugar dissolved, I added it to the egg yolk and 1/2 cup of sugar and then drained it. Looks like this:

This is the liquid:
After it chilled, I added the whipping cream and tada...the batter:

I added the roughly chopped pistachios (and a handful of roasted chopped almonds) into the ice cream maker while it was churning. The result was some delicious ice cream. Yay me!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Homemade Pizza Night: Success

I was so proud of myself that my first homemade pizza turned out good last night. My bf was still thinking about it this morning, telling me it was really good. Smile.

Anyway, I was focused on getting the thin crust dough perfect and opted to use canned sauce instead of making from scratch. I already know I can make tomato sauce from scratch another time. I really wanted to get the dough right. I used the dough recipe from The Spinning Plate's Pizza Margherita recipe. I decided to make half Hawaiian and half sausage & veggies (was a little too heavy for the thin crust, but still really good).  Now I want one of those outdoor brick ovens, if only...

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Chocolate Macarons: Success

I was excited and a bit nervous about making chocolate macarons because all the blogs I read told me it would take many tries to get them right.  But, I decided to follow David Lebovitz's recipe, and am very happy with the result :) of the macarons.  The macarons taste great with the texture I was hoping to achieve, so overall this recipe was a success.  The chocolate filling also came out great, but it took a while to thicken up.  So delicious!

I wasn't sure how they would turn out when I piped them onto the baking sheet (I wasn't very confident about the placement):

I only have one baking sheet (need to buy more), so I used some thin cake pans for the rest of the batter and they ran into one another:

I ate one of the "bad" ones and it was delish, hehe.  Today was a good baking day!

Sticky, Juicy & Tender Wings

4 tablespoons hoisin sauce
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon white wine
chili pepper to taste
- marinate wings overnight
- drizzle honey when ready to bake
- bake at 375 (about 15 minutes on each side)
- drizzle more honey/baste with marinade when you flip over

I'm going to use more chili peppers next time (I used one red chili pepper). It turned out really tender and juicy, but lacked the kick I wanted. Next time, it should be perfect...

Friday, August 13, 2010

Green Tea Ice Cream: Fail

I made green tea ice cream for the first time (using my new KitchenAid ice cream maker attachment). I was happy with the consistancy of the ice cream. I wasn't happy with the taste. It tasted really bitter to me. The recipe I followed called for a lot of matcha (green tea powder). I will try again, using less and I think it should be ok.

The ingredients:

The batter:
Ice cream maker at work:

Thursday, August 12, 2010


Lucky (and admittedly a tad spoiled) me!  I was surprised today with a delivery of not only a stand mixer, but the attachment set and ice cream maker!  I've been wanting a stand mixer for many years, but couldn't get myself to shell out the money for one.  But, someone thought I deserved it :)

Stay tuned to see what I whip up with my new tools!

Corn, Bell Peppers & Tomato Salad

Using ingredients I had on hand, I made a corn salad. It's the perfect summer side dish using seasonal items.

2 ears of corn
baby bell peppers
1 tomato or a handful of grape or cherry tomatoes
lime juice
salt & pepper to taste

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Mango Salad

Perfectly refreshing dish for a hot summer day:

1 green mango
fish sauce