Monthly Archives: October 2009

Somebody Want Fur Coat, BUT I want a pearl coat!!! Pearl-Coated Meatballs

Speaking of Chinese dish, here comes my favorite one – Pearl Coated Meatballs:

I had tasted them from my friends’s party, and promised to make them a thousand times, yet always run short of the courage to actually do it. It requires a little bit labor work and “artistic sense”. Of cause the dish itself definitely worth all these effort – they look perfect in presentation, and the juice ladened “pearls” is for sure a highlight.

Here are the ingredients:

IMG_97311. Sweeten Rice 1 cup, soak in code water for about 4 hours.

2. 1 cup ground pork

3. minced ginger and green onion.

4. 1 tsp of soy sauce, 1 tsp of cooking wine. 1tsp of corn starch and 1/2 tsp of sesame oil.

5. finely chopped greens (whatever greens you like, I use the Bok Choy here).

6. Sliced  sweet potato as base.

Cooking Directions: IMG_9734

1. Mix ingredients 2-5 really well, give it a good stir clockwise for about 5 minutes ( hey that’s why I said it’s a bit labor work!! :-P)

2. Make the meat into small ball shape, and dip them into the sweeten rice until the rice covers the meatball throughly.

3. Put the pearly ball on the sliced sweet potato.

4. Steam the meatball for about 30 minutes.

Done !!

IMG_9756 See how cute they are! After steaming, the sweeten rice just become transparent, and absorb  lots of tasty juice from the meatball. The colors of that rice just like pearls. That’s why I call it “pearl-coated meatball”.

Please have a bite ! you’ll see how that sweeten rice become so chewy, it’s just not like plain rice any more. And it’s not greasy neither ! Not like the meatballs soaked in tomato source , the steamed meatball remains its original flavor with a little naughty twist of that pearl rice.  Quite healthy dish I would say, the fat is purely coming from the meat itself, and 1 tsp of soy sauce doesn’t sounds bad in terms of sodium.

Oh, did I forgot to mention those “supporting role” ??? the juice coming out of that meatball benefit them too!! the sweet potato is still sweet, but with a sophisticated flavor now!

Just can’t help to have a bite, have a bite, have another bite!!!!

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Happy Halloween Everybody!!

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Wanna some Fries? Oh I mean, nonfat fries? Friday filled with Golden Sweet Fries, and Flavor-packed Veggie-Bake!!!

first of all, I’ve been blogging for a week!!! well, if I take from Monday to Friday as a WEEK!! really surprised that how myself enjoyed it:) It’s not a burden at all, instead, I enjoy spending time thinking about the recipes, creating new dishes, taking pictures, and reading those wonderful blogs that share the same interest with me is such a fantastic way of spending my night:)  I guess, one of my professor said: I am in business!!!!

IMG_9675Ok, back to “business”. This morning, the creamy fiber spread definitely play a role in dragging me out of my bed at 6am. (well, maybe the two cups of coffee yesterday made a contribution too! :P) . i warmed one cup of red bean soup, having my apples, and fiber spread TJ’s multi-seed bread: The red-bean spread taste unexpectedly great ! it’s very creamy and naturally sweetened. Plus, not as other bean spread I made before, I will sometimes get choked because of that dried texture.  Well, this is not dried out at all, it’s just like another cream cheese spread !

IMG_9678To make it a bit more fancier, I sliced some bananas to top that red creamy paste. Obviously somebody is complaining that I ate too much for breakfast. haha – yupp, that’s me, and I’m not gonna change it!

I finished my work at school and the model works incredibly well. So I have every reason to think about the food !!!

Having several recipes in mind, I went directly to a korean market for grocery shopping. Back home it’s already 5pm!! what’s for dinner? what’s for Friday’s dinner? what’s for celebration Blogger Friday’s dinner?

Yupp, peak time for foliage, let’s have something that’s warm us up from head to toe !! I just got a bit memorized by the golden dished created by Zesty Cook. That warm orange color just stuck in my head all day long . Also My memory just stirred up – that greatest sweet fries I have ever had in the Counter Burger with my favorite one.  So let’s have some fries!!! that sweet, non-fat, guilty free, celebration fries!!!

Golden Sweet Fries

IMG_9683Just can’t be any easier:

1. sweet potato, cut into the figure size.

2. 350 oven, for about 20 min.

3. Nothing else, that’s it!!!

It’s very different texture from the last time’s baked sweet potato (creamy sweety yammy). It’s a bit dried out on the edges which give it a crunchy flavor, well still moist inside with those nature sweetness. Perfect as side, or sweet endings.

At mean time, I make a Flavor-Packed Veggie-Bake :

People always feel the veggies are plain, non-flavorful. Only meat could satisfy their taste buds. Well, good news for those who only think meat is flavorful enough yet have to categorize it into the “restricted pleasure”, this dish has two critical ingredient makes it just as flavorful as meat:

one is Shiitake mushroom, the other is slightly fried tofu. These Shiitake mushroom has a rich smoky flavor, and juicy texture when it’s been cooked throughly. It’s great in picking up flavors and release it’s own “wooden grilled meat” taste. Shiitakes power up the immune system, strengthening its ability to fight infection and disease because of its lentinan.

As for tofu we may thought it’s a bit dull in flavors thought everyone know it’s healthy food. But if we use a small pan with sprayed on oil , brown the tofu a bit, their dull flavor evolves substantially:-D it become crisp outside, while soft inside, and has a nice smoky flavor too.

So for meat-lovers, here is how we make veggie dish endear to your taste buds as well:

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Ingredients:

1. 1 serving of tofu, slightly pan-fried them till golden brown (as on the right).

2. 2 Shiitake mushroom, sliced,

3. small bunch of Chinese cabbage, thinly sliced.

4. 2 long beans, for decoration.

5. 1/4 cup of cheese.


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Here is how:

1. Sautée ingredients 1-4 together till it’s all soften. Seasoning with dash salt – don’t make it too salty, since cheese adds some salty flavor too .

2. Sprinkle cheese

3. 350 oven for 20 minutes, till the cheese melted.

 

See who’s having dinner with me tonight!!!! Having A wonderful weekend everybody!!!

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What’s for your bread ? A Healthy Creamy Fiber Spread

As I believe, breakfast is the most important meal in a day. It is my wake up call, energy booster, and pleasant quiet moment of the day.

My food profile: I am a bread and butter person for breakfast, though sometimes swing to cereal or oatmeal, the most comfortable food for me in the morning is definitely bread, plus soymilk. I would strongly recommend the multi-seed whole wheat bread from trader joes:

IMG_9584if you are “nuts” person like me, or prefer those crunchy texture for your morning bread, definitely give it a shot , it won’t let u down. Every bite, you would find the crunchiness and the “nuts” feeling! The other good one is the multi-seed with pumpkin. It’s very fulfilling just with two slides, and keep u full and focused all morning!

however, I run out of the spread for my favorite bread!! well, I’m kinda craving for nature sweetness – So I make this banana cheese spread really quick for my babe:

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several slices of bananas, with a bit cheese underneath, 350 degree for about 5 min. Done!

How sweet is that! The banana is warmed and cheese is melted, creating a very – cream cheese like flavor 🙂 and most importantly, it contains much less sat.fat than my original cream cheese!!! another small step towards the healthy breakfast!!!!

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My breakfast this morning ! sliced pear, leftover red bean muffin, plus, my banana cheese toppings!!!!

Well, what about tomorrow morning? I would like to create something that I can directly spread on my favorite bread!!! em…and i won’t have time to go grocery shopping tonight. So put red beans in my slow cooker, high for about 8 hours, and ready to make a Creamy Fiber Spread tonight!

see the red beans after 8 hours – they are totally ” passed out” !! haha , soft enough for the spread! perfect!

creamy fiber spreadIngredients:

1. 2 cup red beans boil it till tender and soft.

2. 1 tsp of butter to give it a creamy flavor.

3. 1 package of Jujuba drink mix ( add a bit sweet flavor, you can add 1 tsp of sugar instead.

Add all ingredient into the food processor , high speed for about 3 min until it’s really smooth.

I like its buttery flavor and smooth texture. This red bean spread is high in fiber and iron, while low in fat (not as my guilty cream cheese spread! :-P) I guess it will keep me full and focused all morning!! Can’t wait to try it out tomorrow morning!!!!

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Meeting with a Pot of Tea

Lucky me, it was raining so heavy last night and a bit cloudy this morning. yet when I start heading to my advisor’s house, the sky cleared up. What a pleasant driving along the way …yeah, it’s foliage time again, beautiful trees along the drive way, and swirl down to my wind shield….just like a wonderland.  The first year at this time, I was in New Hampshire; the second year, I was in Maine. All those warming golden colors are just one of the Fall’s must-have. While this year,  I will stay here, and very surprised to find that beauty can be so close.

Bar harbor Downtown View_Main StrIt was really encouraging to see the incredible house and make an “envision” my future life. Work hard, get things done, earn all of these with my effort. The meeting is intensive but really pleasant, since these two big guys from Netherlands are the best advisor I can ever have. They are incredibly  knowledgeable in their own field, and extremely supportive for students. They are the ones I really look up to , but at mean time, I never feel so nervous in front them.  It’s just hard to believe that this field’s move and shaker would sit down and read line by line of my very first draft, make such detailed revise and comments.  Sometime I even have a feeling that, there is no excuse for me not to work hard with such great advisor.

Since they told me is a “meeting with pot of tea, drinking tea, discussing paper, drinking tea, discussing paper, drinking tea, drinking tea, drinking tea, so before I go, I quickly make a banana pumpkin muffin. “muffin queen”? oh maybe !!!

IMG_9635 ingredients:

1. 1cup of all purpose flour + 1tsp of baking powder.

2. 1 banana sliced ( I only use half of it in this muffin 😀 I ate the rest of them !! )

3. pumpkin spice

4. 1/4 vegetable oil.

5. 1 egg.

6. 2 tsp of sugar

and thats’ it ! I’m too greedy here, hahaha, put too much here, so it comes out really big: see how cute they are!!!

IMG_9638 it’s 350 degree oven for about 20 min, till it’s golden brown, especially the edges !!

They are extremely soft and fluffy when it comes right out of the oven. The edges become a bit dried out when I took it to my advisor’s house. I guess it would be better just microwave for 20 sec.

I drove back around 6pm and see the rosy sun set – what a wonderful day ! I am even thinking of driving down that road again, just for those incredible scenes !

it’s a bit hectic today since I got a lot more new work to do. I ate all my left overs : the Italian Noodles, cheesy sweety yammy and quick sautéed Chinese cabbage for lunch and dinner – no exciting meals , but makes my stomach really comfortable.

Exercise For the Day:

1. Running 30 min.

2. Elipcical 15 min.

3. Stretching 10 min.

Okay, back to work!!! 😀

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A Rainy Tuesday with Comfort Foods: Egg Tortilla Crepe, Italian Sausage Egg Noodles, Plus Cheesy Sweety Yammy!

It’s raining, again ! Maryland is just soooo wet this autumn. em. it doesn’t bother me that much, since I planned to stay at home and use my 4GB ram desktop to run the models.

I miss home on this rainy gloomy day.  I miss the days when my college friends eating those “egg crepes” – and heading to the lib with that warm wraps in hand. For me at that time, it’s just another breakfast with my friends before that early morning class. But now, it means something from somewhere I grow up, making these home food, also means ” revitalize ” my home memory. So , my “Egg Tortilla Crepe” is here:

Ingredients:

1. one egg, beat until foamy (a bit).

2. 1/2 cup cheese, whatever flavor you like.

3. Large/medium tortilla.

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Cooking Instructions:

So first heat the pan and add 1 tsp of oil, swirl the pan to let the oil cover the bottom.

then pour the egg into the pan, swirl the pan again and let the egg fluid cover the pan.

while egg is not completely done, cover the egg liquid with the tortilla, press it gently so the tortilla can stick with the egg.

Sprinkle your fav cheese, for about 2 min, it’s begin to melt. Use a spatula to fold it from left to right – about three folds.

cut it, and serve!

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My breakfast is soy milk, again! and a tremella soup. It is a genus of fungi in the family Tremellaceae, with a beautiful name: Silver Ear.It is rich in dietary fibers and Vitamin D. Also it highly prized as a youthful skin tonic for a healthy complexion. I’m 25 + …need to take care of my skin so I won’t get wrinkles and saggy face so early!

I worked the whole morning without thinking about food ! what a magic ! well, i admit the reason is that model not working!! I have to try out different ways and twist it …

 

 

 

 

 

 

For lunch, I take out my Italian sausage : oh I love that herb smell, though I know its extremely unhealthy : 36% of saturate fat and 25% of sodium. but I think it doesn’t hurt that much if I can balance it out for dinner. With a typical Chinese stomach, and home sicking heart, I substitute Italian noodles with traditional Chinese egg noodle. it is less chewy than those spaghetti,  yet great in picking up flavors.

Italian Sausage Egg Noodles.

Here is the ingredients:

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Diced Italian sausage, I used this PREMO brand – next time want to try out the hot ones :-P.

sliced Korean radish.

1 serving of egg noodles.

about 3 whole peeled tomato.

Cooking is fairly easy: stir in the sausage into a hot pan, till its browned, and use it to grease the pan a bit . Then stir in radish and let them sit for about 4-5 minutes until the radish is golden brown too. then Add in the whole peeled tomato with about 1/2 cup of juice from that can, add in 1/2 water, stew for about 5 min. In the mean time, soak the egg noodle in cold water for about 2 minute and boiled them for another 2 minuets. Done!

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take a closer look: I’m trying to finish those artisan cheese….hehe it’s everywhere!
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Staying at home in a rainy day is really relaxing. I can’t help to enjoy my dessert right after lunch. Normally if I go to office and study, there is no time or mood for dessert. Even though we had a bright kitchen and lovely accompanies of my officemates, it’s just hard to spare a moment to slow down and enjoy the sweets…

But at home, I kinda of have this privilege to make day a little brighter :

 

 

 

Cheesy Sweety Yammy:

Just sweet potato, and a bit cheese ( sorry I bored you with cheese all these days – it has been in my fridge for two weeks ! gotta finish it! )

bake the potato in a 350 degree oven for 1.5 hours. cool it down a bit and cut in half. Sprinkle with cheese and send it back to the oven for another 20 min until the cheese melt and golden brown. Okay….here you go!

IMG_9628 Though they are really sweet, guess it’s Vitamin A content: 769% !!! for us who couldn’t live through 1 day without laptop, this VA is especially good for the eyes. VC is about 65%. Dietary Fiber: 26%. even more than the oatmeal.

and most important, its a complex carbohydrate which means they digest more slowly than white potatoes and therefore will not cause your blood sugar to spike.

So why not switch to some cheesy sweety yammy !!!

The more I think about this food nutrition fact…. the more I love the plate in front of me

and , done!!! finish it without a trace!! Yeah !!!

IMG_9633 Tomorrow I will go to my advisor’s new house for a tea party. Oh yeah , I hope it’s a tea party. but actually it’s a co-author meeting with a pot of tea. Really exciting about this “relaxed” format of “intensive” intellectually challenging meeting!

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Start of a New Week!

Monday always means going to the office and striking a working hard pose.  Having been idling from 2pm to 12pm last night , I set up my mind to have  a productive day. I am definitely a morning person ( though not that early, normally get up around 730am or 8am, hope the day light saving time change coming soon ! so I can wake up at 7am or earlier! )  , while, having said that, morning person won’t go through precious mornings without fulfilling breakfast. A good breakfast, is what drag me from the cozy bed!

I had silk soy milk – kinda addicted, 1 red delicious apple, plus two fusion muffins.

IMG_9579 it is still dark when I’m having my breakfast! Need a little light 🙂 I got a hand mixer several days ago, and spend days and nights thinking about how to maximize its usage . So, in the following weeks, months, and years, probably, I don’t need to go to the bread/cake aisle!

When I lived in shanghai, there are sooooo many bakery close to my apt. “breadtalk ” is a famous one. I once read a blog post of this person trying out nearly all the bread/cakes in that store. That post is kept in my bookmark. Since I’m gonna trying out all the bread/cakes she had from that store.  I really hope my loved ones would try out my bread/cakes 🙂 that’s my way of showing my love.  when I start my job, I’ll buy an apt for my parents, with ovens, for sure.

Going to the office with satisfied stomach, I start doing my data cleaning work. Suddenly I find myself really old….had a hard time remembering what those datasets are, even though I created them just two days ago… that wan’t an efficient morning. Also, my neck hurts a bit, since I had a funny sleep on it, probably last night. Having done my work, and eat spinach pie leftover for lunch,  I went back home and trying to breathe some fresh air.

One pear, and two muffin, my afternoon snack. oooops, sounds a little bit more : -) but I was starving!

Exercise Today

1. 30 min running.

2. 15 stretch.

3. Zumba! 1 hour.

Back home, it’s already very late for a slow cooking dinner , so I sautéed two green peppers with some bamboo shoot. Green peppers are really great source of vitamin C.

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Red Bell Pepper 1/2 cup 95 94.7 135%
Papaya 1 medium 95 94.7 135%

“Foods high in vitamin C are broccoli (205%), brussels sprouts (161%), and strawberries (136%). Remember raw is best because cooking destroys vitamin C and other phytonutrients. Also, studies have shown that raw fruits and vegetables offer you the greatest protection against cancer than any other food.”

(from http://www.ezhealthydiet.com/foods-high-in-vitamin-c.html. )

In cold days, it’s really hard for me to have it raw, so a quick sautéed green pepper, hopefully still nutritious 🙂

The sweet ending today is the red-bean stew from my fusion muffin leftovers .

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As I said yesterday,  a serving of read beans (117g, 1 cup) provides 66% of fiber. beside, a 29%  of iron is good for women, who is easily being anemic. Also, good source of protein (32%) , like  all the other beans. There is an interesting website doing all the “statistical” analysis of food:

http://www.nutritiondata.com/facts/legumes-and-legume-products/4300/2

Well well well. can’t say too much good things about it 😛

oh right, I had another apple one hour later. Too much fruit for today I guess. It’s hard for me to watching those apples sitting around without eating them ! haha 🙂 gotta get a bit control tomorrow ! Too much fruit also means too much sugar. From that “naturally thin” book, you are not suppose to eat more than two servings of sugar per day. o…k…a…y. but the apple is really delicious!!!!

 

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Hello World! with My Fusion Muffin and Spinach Pie

I’ve been thinking about this blog for quite a long time, until last night I received a very strong encouragement from my friend. Yes. Food, is my thoughts all day (well,IT IS! ADMIT IT! ). Researching recipes, trying out new dishes, taking pictures, showing off my creations, blah blah blah, anything food related, is where I can find my passion. Emmmm, maybe sharing with the world my little passion and my practicing of “healthy living” style would be really fun.

Okkkkkay! Here it is!

Glad I start my blog on Sunday:) gimme official excuse to pamper my stomach

For dinner, I make my favorite spinach pie:

before going into the oven

before going into the oven

I used:

1. 1 pack of frozen spinach and 1 large egg.

2. dash salt.

3. artisian 4 cheese, about 1/2 cup.

Mix all these ingredients well.

4. several olives to decorate:)

Oven, 350F degrees, for about 20 min.

Done!

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So simple ! Enjoy!

After dinner, I had a red bean muffin – I guess it is a Fusion muffin, since somebody told me that “American’t don’t mess up with read beans” 🙂 hehe, it’s really good though 🙂 very crunching, and the sweetness is naturally released from red bean. Plus, red bean is high in fiber and warms your body:) good for girls!

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Enn Enn, how’s that ? it is so crisp outside, while moist inside – the secrete? I used a hot read bean soup to mix with flours ! so when I send it to the oven, the texture become so smooth . Don’t forget the wonder comes from such a “plain” muffin :

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Yupp! isn’t that something called “inner beauty”?

with a cup of peppermint tea, my Sunday night unwinds here ~

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