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Monthly Archives: December 2010

Chicken Patties

As I promised, here’s another recipe that I made recently.

Chicken Patties (adapted from Zuzana’s Chicken Patties)
Ingredients:
2 lbs of boneless skinless chicken breasts
Chopped cabbage (about 3-4 leaves?)
1/2 jicama – chopped into small cubes
3 garlic cloves – minced
2 carrots – coarsely chopped (I used food processor)
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 brown onion – minced
2 egg whites (reserved the yolks for other thing)

1/2 jicama

Chopped cabbage, onions, jicama

Directions:
1. Heat a non stick skillet in medium heat, pour 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil.

2. Lightly saute the chopped veggies until the onions turn translucent. This to drain all the water from the vegetables so the chicken patties won’t be mushy.

3. Turn off the heat and let the veggie mixture cool down

4. Cut chicken breasts into small pieces. Then use your butcher knife and pound the chicken meat until evenly ground.
Good workout for your arms eh?

(Option: You can buy pre-grounded chicken meat from the market, but I am skeptical about pre grounded meat because I don’t know how fresh the meat is)

5. Pour in 2 egg whites into the ground chicken meat. Mix until everything incorporates.

6. Mix in the saute vegetable mixture to the ground chicken meat mixture. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

7. Option 1: You can lightly pan fry the patties for more color

But make sure to use medium low heat. Apparently they browned so quick!

8. Option 2: You can bake them in your oven in 350ยฐF for about 20-30 minutes (depends on your oven -mine needs about that)
Lightly grease the baking sheet with extra virgin olive oil. Shape the chicken patty mixture into palm size.

I personally like the baked version better. It’s juicier, no burned parts and the appearance reminds me of shrimp patties. Probably the orange colors from the chopped carrots?

Happy New Year’s Eve!

 
5 Comments

Posted by on December 31, 2010 in recipe

 

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Being a little overactive lately and New Year

Hey everyone, how’s everything? Are you ready for the New Year yet? Any plans?

I don’t have one and am not planning for one either. My plan would be just chill and stay home. New Year’s Eve is the WORST time ever to go out. Traffic jam, crowded places, drunk drivers etc, you name it. So I prefer to have a nice, calm and safe New Year’s Eve.

We got another rain yesterday and it’s been FREEZING and blowing. I’m currently freezing in my room while typing this post.

Anyway, on Sunday we planned to have lunch at Ka Shabu Asian Fondue because I wanted to use Groupon that I got.

But bummer, they closed for lunchtime on that day. Special holiday hour, I guess.

So we swung by to this one instead: Sushi on Fire

we decided to get lunch specials

K ordered this Crunch Rolls - was ok..I only had one...just like California roll topped w/ tempura batter and drizzled with teriyaki sauce

nothing beats complimentary miso soup in the cold weather!

Lil bro ordered a bowl of ramen...that guy really likes ramen as much as rice ๐Ÿ˜€

ramen came w/ salad

hubby's bento lunch - chicken teriyaki

Mine - New York steak - I felt like having meat that day..and for some reason they forgot that I asked for extra salad in place of the rice

apparently they were kind enough to give me that extra salad!

I gave all the california rolls, rice and the fried gyoza to the boys. I only ate the steak and the salad (with very minimal dressing)

So what does the title of the post mean?

Well I’ve been pretty active in my kitchen experimenting cooking simple stuffs yet healthy and want to share them with all of you! ๐Ÿ˜€

Basic ingredients that I used in the following recipes:
Half of jicama – shredded (I used my Cuisinart food processor)
Bell peppers
Carrots
Cabbage
Garlic
Salt and peppers to taste

Stuffed Bell Peppers (Vegan)
1 package of firm tofu – pressed and drained – I used Furama tofu brand
Curry paste
5 bell peppers
2 carrots
2 cloves of garlic -minced

I love colorful vegetables!

Note: I drained 2 packages of tofu, but actually I only used 1 (4 tofus total)

Directions:

Coarsely chopped carrots in your food processor

Same thing w/ the cabbage

Blend tofu in the food processor until smooth

Mix the mashed tofu, carrots, minced garlic and cabbage together until everything incorporates

Put about 1-2 tsp3 of curry paste - don't put too much or it'll has some bitter taste. Mine turned out that way..lesson to learn

Mix until everything incorporates. Also salt and pepper to taste

Slice the bell peppers horizontally, remove the stems

Stuff the bell peppers with the tofu mixture

Preheat non stick skillet medium heat and greased lightly with extra virgin olive oil.

Pan fry the stuffed bell peppers with the tofu mixture side down in medium heat

You could cover it to speed up the process ๐Ÿ™‚

Flip and taa daa!

Serve them over a bed of steamed cabbage

Delish!

I had extra ingredients left so I made another batch of Cauliflower Fried Rice cooked with a bit of butter. This time it tasted even better than the first time I made it! Guess the extra veggies gave it more flavor. Hubby surely loves it!

I have one more recipe to share but this post is already long enough so I’ll post it next time ๐Ÿ™‚

The year 2011 is upon us and we heard lots of people making New Year resolution/goal/intention/plan etc etc.

Personally, I am not a New Year resolution/goal/plan etc type of gal. For me it’s just another year and I don’t usually try to make a resolution or a goal or anything like that. I can always set my goal anytime, doesn’t have to be around New Year. I’m just hoping the year 2011 will be better than this year and the economy will pick up.

How about you? Do you have any New Year resolutions/goal/plan/intention etc?

Happy New Year!

 
6 Comments

Posted by on December 30, 2010 in food, vegetables

 

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Christmas and More Recipes

Heyyy, Merry Christmas everyone! It’s already 11 pm when I was writing this post.

Anyway, we got another rain in LA again (heesh, hopefully it’ll clear out by Monday. I hate driving in the rain. Enough with 6 days of rain in LA).

Let’s start a bit from a day before Christmas Eve. I’ll post up most pics and less words. Too lazy to type. ๐Ÿ˜›

PRE CHRISTMAS EVE
I decided to give a little “gifts” for my colleague: Chinese Tea Infused Eggs and Healthy Chicken Fingers.

Chinese Tea Infused Eggs (Adapted from: Tiny Urban Kitchen)

boil eggs until done

When they're done, crack the shells a bit (don't break them) - discard the water earlier and pour in fresh water

Prepare 2 Lipton tea bags and one Star Anise

Mix in the tea bags and the star anise along with the hard boiled eggs. Simmer for 1 hour - leave the eggs in the tea overnight. Oh also add some salt as well.

Chinese Infused Tea Eggs - ready!

Healthy Chicken Fingers (adapted from Zuzana’s Chicken Fingers)

Cut chicken breasts into strips - marinate with salt, curry powder and a bit of coconut milk

Prepare for the almond flour - Ground 2 cups of almonds in your food processor

2 cups of almond yield more than 2 cups of almond flour apparently

Add equal amount of shredded coconut flakes. Scoop up 1 cup of almond flour and add 1 cup of shredded coconut flakes to another container

Crack 1 egg and add a bit of coconut milk (no exact measurement, maybe about 3 tablespoons?)

Next- Dip the chicken strip into the egg mixture then the almond flour/coconut flakes mixture before align them on the greased baking sheet

Ready to be bake - pre heat oven 350F

Bake for about 25 minutes in 350 F - depends on your oven.

Or if you're impatient like me who doesn't have big oven to fit all the chicken strips - light pan fry them on non stick skillet

Healthy Chicken Fingers- Done!

Serve with steamed veggies - DELISH!

Wrap everything, wrote the card- DONE!

To my surprise, she also gave me something as well - and her wrapping looks MUCH NICER than mine..LOL

Homemade Christmas sweets - Portuguese/Indian style

Even my dentist gave me "Xmas Gift" as well - my retainers...gotta wear these fellas as often as possible..meaning I have to brush my teeth more often after every single meal.

CHRISTMAS EVE

Carby breakfast! - WW Pita Bread, Naan bread!

Some of the sweets from my colleague's gift- fruit cake slice and some deep fried sweets? Fruit cake taste good, not so much on the deep fried stuff

Vegan stir fry!: Eggplant, colorful bell peppers, shrooms

Steamed Chinese Kale (gailan) - yummy!

And off to watch Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1!

I know I just watched Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallow despite it’s been out for about a month already. I like the book and the story but I am not keen to be in the crowd to watch it when it just came out. In fact the theater was empty yesterday so finding the seats was a breeze. Hm, for some reason I just wasn’t keen on some of the semi nude scene. Why did they have to do that? Totally unnecessary.

And we also watched Black Swan. I’d say: WOW, that movie was pretty intense. Not a scary movie but more like psycho and thriller at the same time.

Starving after the movie- In N Out for to the rescue!

buns for him, bunless for her (forgot to ask them no mayo..argh!)

Unfortunately, that wasn't enough. Got home, cut myself 2 apples and 2 oranges. yummy!

Ate 1/4 of this chocolate that I made couple days ago..not bad..bitter sweet!

CHRISTMAS / TODAY
We did NOTHING! In fact, we were cleaning and did house work and went to in laws for dinner. Got some grocery on the way back when it started to rain.

How’s everyone’s Christmas???
K and I stopped exchanging gifts on Christmas/Birthdays etc. Even when we were still dating, we didn’t do gift exchange that much either. In fact, I already got myself a Christmas present, my new camera! ๐Ÿ˜€

 
22 Comments

Posted by on December 25, 2010 in food

 

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Dashing through the Rain, Kitchen Adventures, Simple Gift, and an Upcoming Facelift

It’s ALMOST Christmas and we’ve got LOTS OF RAIN here in Los Angeles!

Los Angeles sky has been like this since Friday!

Been raining NON STOP since Saturday! Weather forecast said it’ll be like this until this coming Wednesday.

I don’t mind rain, actually but just hate it when I have to go out and drive! I’ve seen accidents and road closures.

Parents just left last night (changed of plan from Thursday because my brother suddenly felt nausea (I called this Nausea Breakdown Syndrome).

He had been having nausea on and off before (digestion problem) and it might occur again because he’s been on a lot of TB meds for the past 6 months. Good news is the doctor finally reduced the meds from 4 to 2. 4 more months of treatment and hopefully he’ll be FULLY recovered.

I gave my parents a little Christmas gift: Wrote a Christmas card telling how I appreciated their help all this time here and also our differences in the beginning since I have been independent for the past 10 years. Plus a small Godiva Dark Chocolate truffles and our pictures with them while they were here.

Simple gift yet full of thoughts. I wrote a lot in the card. Hopefully they like it.

My co worker gave me and my fellow colleagues a box of cookies!

These are SINFULLY good! Not too sweet, yet crunchy and sort of melt in your mouth cookies! I only had ONE. These cookies are not from here btw. They travelled all the way from Hongkong homemade bakery according to her. ๐Ÿ™‚

I’ve been a little adventurous in the kitchen lately.

Like this Cauliflower “Fried Rice”.

3 Ingredients:
1/2 of cauliflower (pick the most white and big looking one!)
3 garlic cloves – minced
3 stalks of green onions-chopped (separate the green and white part)
Salt, pepper, garlic powder to taste
1 Tbsp olive oil/butter/lard/coconut oil or whatever oil you like!
Optional: curry powder for a little kick, paprika etc the choice is ENDLESS!

Steps:
1. Chopped the cauliflower and ground them in your blender/food processor until they look like this

2. Minced the garlic and green onions (reserve the green parts for later use)

3. Heat up the non stick skillet with 1 Tbsp oil (I used olive oil)

4. Saute the garlic and the white part of the green onions until fragrant

5. Mix in the ground cauliflower

6. Seasoned with salt, pepper and garlic powder to taste

7. Mix in the green part of the green onions

8. Ready to devour!

Cauliflower Fried Rice!

It's healthy, grain free and nutritious!

Finally, after reading so many raw/vegan cookies on the blogsphere, I decided to try making them my own:

Raw Almond Cookies!
(vegan and gluten free)

Ingredients (I didn’t measure everything exactly)
1/4 cup raw almonds
1/4 cup raw walnuts
1/2 cup golden roasted flaxseeds
1/2 cup raw sunflower seeds
1/2 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
2 cups of raw almond butter (I used my homemade almond butter- super easy!)
2 pitted medjool dates

Directions:
1. Lightly toast the almonds and walnuts in your oven for about 4 minutes

2. Put all ingredients in your blender/food processor and grind until the nuts are coarse (not too much or it’ll become nut butter)

coarsely grounded

3, Mixed the grounded ingredients with the almond butter

4. Shape into whatever you like! ๐Ÿ˜€ I didn’t have any cookie cutters so I just shaped them into flat cookie.

5. Chill them in the fridge so they’ll harden a bit

Optional: Bake the cookies for 15 minutes (I might want to give this a try)

These cookies are VERY RICH, so be mindful of the portion size.

Oh not to forget I also made Vegan Tofu Eggplant Stir Fry.

In the mix: tofu, eggplant, bell peppers and button mushrooms

Super easy and healthy! You can always customize this and turn it into a different kind of stir fry! I LOVE STIR FRY!

On another note, I have a BIG plan for this blog and it might take me quite sometime to actually put together. A little hint, I might merge my other blog content into this one. We’ll see how things go.

Last but not least, I really want to win this iHerb Giveaway!

Have a wonderful Christmas everyone!! Be safe and be merry!

Question:
What’s your latest cooking adventure?

 
16 Comments

Posted by on December 21, 2010 in food

 

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Birthday and BBQ galore!

Heey everyone, hope you all had a great week and weekend! Mine was filled with birthdays and BBQs.

Started with my dad’s birthday last Tuesday.

I got Orange Blossoms - small size - enough for all 5 of us

Cakes are too common and dad is not a sweet tooth guy (neither do I) so Edible Arrangements came in rescue! I bought this using Groupon ($20 for $40)! Originally this would cost $48 but with Groupon, I only paid $28! SCORE! Besides everyone LOVED the fruits. We finished everything!

And I got myself a super early b’day gift..haha.. A NEW DIGITAL CAMERA! FREE case, SD card AND shipping! With an additional promo code, I even covered the sales tax! YAY ME!

SD1400 - 14 MP, I could even shoot 720p HD video.

This coming Thursday, my parents will go back to Indonesia as my brother has finally feeling a lot better and could do stuff on his own. Originally, they didn’t intend to stay this long (almost 6 months?) but apparently my brother’s case was a bit different from typical people who had TB infection.

So we all went out for Korean BBQ lunch on Saturday. My parents rarely eat out as they dislike the greasiness of restaurant’s food. But at least I want them to try Korean BBQ.

And also I got an excuse to give my new camera a try! Tee hee..!

fresh spring mix salad lightly dressed in peanut sauce - yummy! Most of us ate this, even got a second serving!

Daikon (radish) pickles (left) and rice paper wrap (right)

Typical Korean banchan (side dishes) - kimchee, potato salad, mung bean jello, dried anchovies etc

We ordered Korean seafood pancake. I didn't have any tho, only a small bite. We packed this one home

BBQ beef -first round

my plate x 3 more- mostly veggies and some chicken (unpictured)

pork belly (ew, should've asked them to substitute it with something else) and shrimps

steamed eggs

Apparently, the BBQ didn’t stop there. In the evening our house was infested with lots of BBQ smoke from our neighbor!! Who’d knew they’d be BBQing in this time of the year? And stupid me forgot to close our room windows as they were bbqing RIGHT there! Geez, our house was full of smoke for a good 15 minutes, plus the smell!

And it happened TWICE!

On Sunday, we went to the in-laws for more birthday- my brother-in law’s! And it was the actual day!

Little nephew got to decorate the gingerbread man with his future aunt (my bro in law’s fiance).





tada! Gingerbread man ready for action!

CHOMP!

More cake!

nibbled around the frosting and cream

Lastly, I found out that I won Lynn at The Actor’s Diet Oh Nuts! giveaway (thanks Lynn!).

Questions:
1. Are you a food adventurous?
I’d say both K and I usually stay on the safe side. Usually we only go to Asian restaurants (Vietnamese, chinese, japanese, Korean, Thai) more than Caucasians. Oh and I also like Mediterranean food!

2. Have you used Groupon before?
The Edible Arrangement was my first time trying the Groupon. At first I was a bit skeptical about it as it sounds too good to be true. But after I tried it and it worked, I planned to keep an eye on any Groupon deals.

3. Free food, yay or nay?
A couple months ago fast food chains were having free meal giveaway (El Pollo Loco, KFC, etc). I only went for the El Pollo Loco and OMG, the line was crazy and I decided that would be my first and last time getting free food. I like free stuff because I’m cheap (haha) but for something like this, I rather pay than have to wait in the line for one hour just for a small piece of chicken meal.

 
11 Comments

Posted by on December 13, 2010 in food, korean food, life

 

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Birthdays and Adapting

Hey all, how’s your weekend? Thank you so much for your nice comments on my last post. Seriously it took me at least a day to totally forget that incident. Tomorrow will be the time I’ll find out how much will it cost me to repair that bumper – *finger crossed*

Anyway let’s move on to something fun!

Folks at Kashi are so generous to send me this sample and coupons too!

Sunday was our nephew’s 4th birthday and my mother in-law’s birthday – wow double birthday celebrations on one day!

We all went to Chuck E Cheese! - er this only for nephew's b'day

lots of pizzas! - didn't have any

but I scavenged the veggie platter the most

Plus some chicken wings and the celery - minus the ranch dipping

Lawrence is a big fan of Lightning McQueen from Cars so sis in law chose Cars as this year's b'day theme - from the goodie bags

to the cake!

my portion - so light and fluffy and not too sweet - kudos to Asian bakery cake ๐Ÿ™‚

homemade cupcakes from one of the parent, didn't have any, but surely they look well decorated

Our gift to the nephew. In Chinese tradition, usually we give red envelope for any celebrations – birthdays, weddings, graduation etc – can’t go wrong with those! Who doesn’t like cash gift? In this case, the cash gift will go to sis in law.

Who wanna play the arcade? I played the racing car and was on the 3rd place haha...didn't know I could do that. K played first and he didn't even finish the race...I should've took the pic.

Stopped by Whole Paycheck which located right behind Chuck E Cheese. Saw lots of goodies that I’ve seen or heard from the foodie bloggers. From the hot bar, vegenaise, tofurky and bunch other stuffs.

After wondering around for about 30 mins, I decided to give these a try. Spent about $8 for only these 3 stuff. Guess the whole paycheck name suits well – if you’re not careful enough, you’ll be spending your ENTIRE paycheck for one week grocery..haha.

I was a bit hungry so I snacked the Two Moms in the RAW Berry Chia Bar.

This was my first time trying raw and gluten free bar. My first impression? It tasted like a dirt…LOL – but I don’t hate it either. It might be a bit dry to my taste and somewhat chewy/hard to bite. I was expecting it to be crunchy. The upside part was there was no added sugar which is pretty rare in most snack bars that I’ve seen. I could taste a hint of banana and the tanginess of the cranberries. I’m a tangy girl so a little tangy taste is always a plus for me..hehe. Not so much on sweets though.

Ingredient list was awesome too! All natural and pronounceable (no chemical names, artificial stuff etc)

I was hoping to try the Cacao nibs ones but WF was out (or at least I didn’t see it on the shelf). I wish to try more of Two Moms in the Raw products, but apparently WF is the only California retailer that carries them and there aren’t any WF nearby my neighborhood area.

Then we had a good dinner at in-laws to celebrate mom-in law’s birthday. Not sure when was her exact birthday since they use Chinese calendar system but the main point was a family get together.

The highlight of the dish was the dungeness crabs. $2.99/lbs – can’t go lower than that! WF carried it for $7.99/lbs and weren’t fresh either!

Lotsa foods!!

Love this dish just a bit greasy. Bell pepper stuffed with fishcake (ground fish)

Another homemade noodles from scratch - father-in-law made these- it's fish noodles ๐Ÿ™‚ - was yummy and again kinda greasy for my taste

Good food, good weekend, good time ๐Ÿ™‚

Questions:

1. Are you a celebrating type of person?
For me only for wedding anniversaries (5 year, 10 year etc) but not so much for birthdays. Having a birthday party with cakes, gifts might be fun for kids, but as we grow up, even having cakes become unnecessary. Besides after so many years, it’ll get more challenging to give gift to that particular person.

2, Do you usually give gifts to someone in special occassions (birthdays, graduations, Christmas etc)?
I only do if I KNOW EXACTLY what that person wants or likes, otherwise no. For our nephew’s case, we just gave cash gifts to sister because she spent quite amount for arranging this birthday party. It’s almost like we’re paying for our lunch meal at Chuck E Cheese..haha.

3. How do you serve dishes at home? Family style or individual style?
For us mostly are family style, as seen from the dinner at in-law’s place. Even at home we usually have a family style dinner. The upside is we got to share everything but on the downside, sometimes it’s hard to control the portion hehe.

4. How do you adapt to other people’s eating style?
Let me explain this a bit. On my husband’s family side, EVERYONE uses his/her own chopsticks to get the food from the serving dishes – EVEN AFTER he/she eats using that chopsticks. My family side DOESN’T do that. For us it’s kinda gross to get the food from a dish which everyone has dig in their saliva slathered chopsticks. My family doesn’t eat using chopsticks (we use spoons and forks) but even though we use chopsticks, we still use serving spoons to get the food.

First time I had a meal at my hubby (bf that time) place, I was grossed out and almost didn’t wanna touch anything for second round.
There’s no way I can make my hubby to tell his parents not to do those (that’ll be rude), especially they’ve been cooking and working hard in the kitchen preparing the food for us. Solutions? I load up my plate with a bit of everything from each dishes or any dishes that I’d want to eat and not getting a second round. I just eat slowly so I won’t ended up finishing my stuff first before everyone else. So far this strategy works fine for me ๐Ÿ™‚

 
5 Comments

Posted by on December 6, 2010 in food

 

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Never underestimate your instinct

I just want to do this little quick post about what happened last night.

I hit someone’s car when I was backing up at the office parking lot.

The damage wasn’t too bad, heck in fact my car looks worse than the car that I hit!

SHIT.

Yes they want our parking, but if they are just stuck there blocking our way out, how can they get our parking?

Anyway, this lady was actually waiting for a parking spot and just happened she was at my blind spot. Plus her dark colored car wasn’t helping either. The parking lot wasn’t well lit so the next thing I knew BANG!

I should’ve listened to my instinct for waiting a little later to get out from the office. Lately, our warehouse people been working overtime and since they park their car at the other warehouse, they had to drive their cars back to our facility. But we all get out at the same time. Everytime the office employees try to get out, we got stuck because of the non stop incoming warehouse people.

Now just have to wait for the insurance to take care of everything.

I feel SO STUPID!

Even though the damage wasn’t too bad (scratches on my bumper and the bumper was a bit off now), but this wasn’t my first time.

Almost a year ago when I just moved here, I hit my garage door when I tried to back in AT THE SAME SPOT! That time I didn’t go thru the insurance to fix it, thus I spent about 2k fixing it (the bumper and the tail light).

Why does this have to happen at the SAME SPOT?

Anyway sorry for this little rants. I just need to get something out from my mind. Even my morning exercise couldn’t take this off from my mind.

 
8 Comments

Posted by on December 3, 2010 in life, Uncategorized

 

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