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Recipes that include carrot

Dairy-Free Mexican Street Corn (Elotes)

Monday, August 18, 2014

While I went to culinary school and have worked in restaurants, Lon is self-taught. For the most part, it’s the one thing he looks to me for guidance with. Lon is a great home cook though and loves to do it when he has the time, which is not often these days between two kids and a demanding job he loves. Yet, every once in a while on one of those days that Lon cooks, he totally blows my socks off. He makes something that tastes amazing and/or is just an idea that works so well that I never thought of. This dairy-free version (Lon can’t have any dairy) of Mexican Street Corn or Elotes is one of those times! It was so good I had to document it and blog about it!

Dairy-Free Mexican Street Corn (Elotes) -Cover Pic

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Chinese Borscht

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Fusion food sometimes sounds new and modern, like a fanciful restaurant theme. We forget that borders between countries and cultures have existed since far back in history, where ingredients, flavors, and recipes have been shared.

Chinese Borscht Title Pic

My late grandma Olia (on the right, below) grew up near the border of China and Russia, where she ate lots of this Chinese version of Borscht. She taught my mom how to make it and my mom taught me. My mom admits removing the potatoes and sour cream from the version Grandma Olia taught her (most Chinese versions don’t include sour cream) and I’ll admit, I made a few changes too. My mom always used canned beets and since I’m not a fan of canned products (due to the BPA in the adhesive), I use fresh beets. I also cut the veggies into smaller pieces just to make it easier to eat. (Caya obviously in mind.) The result is a healthy and hearty soup with meat and veggies that glow pinkish-red (which totally amuses Caya). It comforts to the core and I get nostalgic every time I take a sip.

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Triple Mushroom, Lotus Root, and Soybean Skin

Friday, April 5, 2013

I kind of really fell off the planet for almost two years. Becoming a first time mom is tough, at least it really kicked me in the butt. It took me a long time to get back in the game (I hope you’ve noticed the new regularity in posting!) and then I realized: things had really changed since my “maternity leave”. What are all these new social media platforms? Panic! It was really daunting at first, especially because there was so many. I stalled several times yet once I did it, it quickly became habitual to take pictures of Caya on Instagram and plan out future home reno projects on Pinterest. And, thanks to the encouragement of Jackie and Blanca, I’m on Google+ now too. (I’m still a little lost on G+ but Chef Dennis Littley has a very helpful Community Education Series). So follow me on Instagram and Pinterest, and circle me on Google+. I’m back from the dead!

New social media platforms can seem scary to approach at first and so can unfamiliar ingredients. This beautifully earthy dish has some not-so-standard ingredients. Don’t fret; I’m here to walk you through.

title picture: mushrooms, lotus root, soybean skin

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Lentil Soup

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Lon works in midtown and often buys lunch from Food Exchange, right downstairs. It’s a modern deli, a little fancier and more organized looking than the old-school NYC deli. It wouldn’t be special enough to blog about except that Lon has been raving about their Lentil Soup for months. He complains on the days when he arrives too late and they’ve sold out. If he’s still thinking about that when he gets home, he must really like that Lentil Soup.

About a month ago, still raving about the lentil soup…he started suggesting I taste the soup and make it for him. One day, he came home with a cup of that lentil soup, heated it up while I was sleeping on the couch, woke me up and fed it to me. Two days later, he came home with a four pound bag of lentils. He was getting serious about this lentil soup.

Lentil Soup 2nd round 6

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Chinese Chicken Roll

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Some Chinese dishes are so well known that there’s already an accepted English name for them. It certainly minimizes confusion when all the restaurants use the same name on their menu. We have no doubt what Hot & Sour Soup is. We recognize the word wontons and Ma Po Tofu signals heat to us.  For every widely known Chinese dish, there’s at least 5 that have not met with such fame and fortune. I don’t read much Chinese so even I get confused when reading the English translations on menus.

It always causes me to think about naming when I write these recipe posts. Sometimes, like this time, I really didn’t know what to call this dish. In Chinese, it’s called Jee Jwen, which translates to Chicken Roll.

Chinese Chicken Roll 6

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Chinese American Potato Salad

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Finally! We moved, but it’s not all smooth sailing yet. We’re living out of boxes and we don’t have a kitchen yet. While our perfect kitchen is being built (which we will be talking about soon), I’m going to have to get crafty. I do have many plug-in appliances (rice cooker, toaster oven, panini press, waffle maker, microwave, etc.) so we’re still going to have a ball here. I think we’re going to be pleasantly surprised with how much I (or you) can do without a kitchen. (Gulp) Determined to eat well every single day without exceptions, here goes…

In grade school, one of my favorite packed lunches was a Potato Salad Sandwich. As a grade-schooler, I assumed that this potato salad was Chinese food because that’s what mom makes, Chinese food. It wasn’t until later that I realized that it didn’t really fit. Then, I started thinking it was just one of the few American dishes my mom knew how to make. She did make spaghetti occasionally too. Over time, I started to find that none of my American friend’s moms made potato salad this way. My friends would stare at my lunch and ask, what is that? That lead to the belief that it was just my mom’s own concoction. She has a lot of those so I thought nothing of it.

potato salad sandwich 3

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Basic Mei Fun

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Since I don’t have a kitchen, I’ve been spending lots of time in my mom’s kitchen, which explains all the Chinese recipes up recently. Every time we get together to write down one of her recipes, we discuss which one we’ll do next time. As we brainstormed, my mom started thinking we shouldn’t do certain recipes because she felt like my non-Chinese audience might not like it. Things like tripe, pig feet, duck feet, pig ears, or innards might be unappetizing to some. Dishes with fermented flavors or unfamiliar textures might be hard to handle. I thought about it and decided that I want to share as much as I can, and you can decide which recipes you want to make, right?

plate of basic mei fun

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Parsnip Gnocchi with Braised Oxtail

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

I’m quite fond of fatty meats and root vegetables together. It’s possible that both being winter foods, it becomes a familiar combination. But I’m convinced that it’s more than that. Parsnips, carrots, yams, sweet potato, and more are storage organs for the plant and typically contain more sugars and starches than other vegetables. It just works exceptionally well with fatty meats, standing up to it with more flavor and texture.

I’ve been thinking about parsnips and oxtail for a while, flipping from some kind of ravioli, to a mash, to a terrine, and finally deciding on a Parsnip Gnocchi with a Braised Oxtail Sauce.

Parsnip Gnocchi with Oxtail and flower background

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Make Chicken Soup, Not War

Thursday, January 21, 2010

I’ve been working on this post since the beginning of winter, when I first started thinking about chicken soups. The variety of chicken soups across so many cultures is just so interesting to me. They are all different, yet share that common bond, the ability to comfort anyone, and make each of us think of home.

Chicken Orzo Soup

There isn’t anything scientific in the post. I did not set out to prove or disprove anything, or even test any theories. This is not about one being better than the others. I just wanted to try several different recipes and methods, just to take notice and appreciate what each had to offer, and each one did have something special to offer. I will make all of these again, and I hope this post is useful for you each and every winter.

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Shrimp Bibimbop

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

This is not a traditional bibimbop, but I think of bibimbop as one of those “everything but the kitchen sink” recipes. I make it when I’ve got a bunch of random vegetables I want to use up and I want it all to amount to a one-bowl meal. Most commonly, bibimbop has bulgolgi, a Korean marinated beef. I didn’t have any beef so this one uses shrimp. I didn’t have any bean sprouts, but that’s ok. Traditionally, it’s an egg with runny yolk but Lon doesn’t like those so I chose to make a thin omelet and slice it up. See how flexible it is? I feel like every college kid should learn the jist of bibimbop because it’s an easy way to make a healthy meal. Where I use water convolous, you can use spinach or any greens. Instead of shrimp, try chicken, pork, or beef. If you prefer, use brown rice. You get the idea…All you need is the red pepper sauce (gochu chang) and it’ll be delicious!

Shrimp close-up 2

Shrimp Bibimbop
~4 servings

Red Pepper Sauce

  • 3/4 cup hot red pepper paste
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons sesame oil

Toppings

  • 1 cup julienne carrots
  • 5+ teaspoons vegetable oil, divided
  • 3 large eggs, beaten
  • 2 cups julienne zucchini
  • 8 cups water convolous, stems and leaves seperated into 5″ to 6″ segments
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 8 scallions, cut in 3″ segments (cut thicker parts in half lengthwise)
  • 4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 2 teaspoons kecap manis
  • 32 medium shrimp, peeled and deveined and tails removed
  • kosher salt and white pepper
  • 4 cups steamed white rice
  • garnish with roasted seaweed and sesame seeds (optional)

Instructions –

1. Make the red pepper paste by stirring the ingredients together in a small bowl. Set aside.

Korean Red Pepper Sauce

2. Throw carrots in boiling water for just a few seconds. Remove and rinse with cold water. Drain. Set aside.

3. Heat 1 teaspoon of oil in a large flat pan on medium heat. Pour in egg mixture and swirl to coat the bottom. As soon as the bottom is solid, try to flip it over. It should finish in 2 seconds. Remove from heat immediately. When it cools enough to handle. Slice it in long strips. Set aside.

sliced egg

4. Heat 1 teaspoon oil in a wok on high heat. Toss in zucchini with some salt and pepper. Toss around just until tender. Remove to a bowl and set aside.

5. Return wok to heat with 2 teaspoons of oil. Add the stems of the convolous with minced garlic and salt. Toss around until tender. Add the leaves with a little more salt. Toss around until leaves wilt. Remove from heat to a bowl and set aside.

6. Use that same wok again with just a light coating of oil. Add scallions and sliced garlic with kecap manis. Toss around just until the scallion has softened a bit but is not mushy. Remove from heat to a bowl and set aside.

7. Rinse the wok and return to the flame to dry it. Once it starts smoking, add 1 teaspoon oil. Swirl it around and add the shrimp. Add 1 tablespoon of the red pepper sauce and toss to coat the shrimp. Stir around until the shrimp curl up and there’s no more grey. (It’s a little bit hard to see in this dish with the red pepper sauce.) Remove from heat immediately. Set aside.

8. Divide rice into 4 bowls. Divide each topping into the 4 bowls, keeping each topping in a neat pile and put the shrimp in the center. Top with seaweed and sesame if you want. Serve with red pepper sauce on the side for each person to add as much as they want.

Shrimp Bibimbop 4

Usually the dish is served as pictured above, then the person eating it will add sauce and stir it all up.

Mixed Shrimp Bibimbop 2

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