Category Archives: Sweet Endings

Finally I make something “pickled”!! A Korean/Chinese Style Pickled Radish, and Applebee’s New Menu item trial

The first week coming back has been crazy…but so far so good. Catching up with friends give me excellent excuse of dinning out….although my stomach is kinda satiated from all the authentic Chinese food at home. I am a bit slacking in cooking at home…but totally open to lunch or dinner outside. obviously my belly is calling for some variety….Dinning out always ends up with food replication or recreation at home for me 😛

My friend and I went to a small but cozy family style Korean restaurant. As a big fan of kimchi appetizers, as always, my appetite is totally flared up. Man. how come I become ready in front of food so quickly even though I know I just gained several pounds at home (don’t ask me how much, I am not dare to weigh myself yet!!! haha)

I can barely turn my eyes away from a small plates of sweet and sour radish. it’s pretty light, not as its spicy companions. it suddenly reminds me of the traditional pickle radish in China. Our pickled radish is normally darker than this one, and saltier. This one is sweeter. Can I make some at home and have little bit every now and then?

pickled stuff always sounds intimidating to me due to its complex procedure. But somehow I have the confidence that this one gonna be really easy. So if you got some radish and happen to have white vinegar at home, this recipe is for you!!!

cute it into desirable size.

Procedures:

1. about 1/4 cup of salt, rub into the cubed radish, and wait for about 15 min till the excess water comes out of the radish.

2. Mix in 1/4 cup of sugar, 1/2 cup of white Balsamic vinegar (which also adds a bit sweetness).

3. Store in the fridge over night.

Ready to eat!! it’s surprisingly fresh, light, slightly sweet and sour. Like its delicate taste. It’s such a wonderful accompany for dinner table 😀

The other day my previous roommate come back to U.S from Japan. She obviously miss American food!! Since she already have hamburger and Chipolet  , we decided to give Applebee’s a try since in that way, she would have much more varieties to choose from. Applebee has some new menu items that look really enticing…..

Spicy Shrimp Diavolo

the waitress is impressed how I correctly pronounced D-I-A-V-O-L-O as a Asian NOT born in America.  I have absolutely no idea of what does that word mean. but I am always over-adventurous in trying out new items on the menu. this one is no exception.

So I do some research later:

Fra Diavolo (Italian for “Brother Devil”) is the name given to a spicy sauce for pasta or seafood. Most versions are tomato-based and use chili peppers for spice, but the term is also used for sauces that include no tomato, or that use cayenne or other forms of pepper. According to chef Mario Batali, the spicy sauce is an Italian-American creation and is rarely served in Italy.

Yupp! that’s exactly the sauce I had in that pasta. The shrimp was grilled to its perfection, and the chunks of fresh tomatoes gives lots of surprise!!! it’s been a long time since I had pasta. This one definitely rocks. Perfect portion if you decide in the beginning to have some dessert.

maybe I kinda frightened my friend’s with my tolerance level of sweetness. But May I recommend this triple chocolate melt down to my dear blog friends if you need to impress your accompany the sweet endings :

Chocolate lava (not that sweet but very chocolaty), chocolate cake, and melting hot chocolate that flowing out of the chocolate mountain.  Sided with icecream, the bipolar temperature of two sweets just make the ending conversation sweeter and warmer !!!

Life is short, so have some dessert.

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Filed under "Local" Cuisine, Authentic Asian, Light Delight, Sweet Endings

Parties Parties Parties!!! and….party leftovers !!! Cashew Milk, Enchilada, and Dessert is served.

Guess every body is busy with parties now, end of the year, celebrate with friends and colleagues…. and not surprisingly, so much food leftovers from all the parties. what do you do  with them? I am not gonna toss all the cookies and chocolates and beef stews, just not feel good to throw away food that can actually adds flavors to my routine eats. so today’s eat is all about recycles !

Tons of beef stew leftover, plus some pork stew… though I am not a carnivore , I am happy to have some tender beef stews every now and then. So made this Left over Enchiladas ( Not an attractive name, I know, haha 😀

Not a very typical enchilada that packed with cheese. But I love the crunchiness where the tortilla is not melted with cheese.  I guess there is much less calories than the one I had in Austin grill – oh man, that one, is full of cheese and full of ….??? sorry I can only remember I was eating lots of cheese 😛 Please don’t blame me if you feel cheese the essence of this dish, haha

I mix the left over bite size beef and pork stews with diced mushrooms. wrap in a tortilla, sprinkle mozzarella cheese and olive. Bake them at 350 for 30 minutes.

Sizzling again!! I just can’t help eat them all. The smoky smell from mushroom well blended with the beef and pork stews, and the tortilla is soooo crunchy!!

You want some as well?

Maybe you all have the experience of bringing back home the left over cookies and cakes from the party….or is it only me???? hahaha, last week we had a department party. everyone else decide to bring back the left over beers….while I was attracted by those chocolate crisps and cookies 😀 do i just have a fate of gaining weight ?? hehe. but I had an idea already what I’m gonna use them for.

It’s my M’M Cake. yeah, M1= morning, M2= moist! did I just get my creativity back ??

The cake itself contains :

1. “bean dreg” from cashew milk that I’ll introduce later.

2. 1 cup of self-rising flour, 1/2 cup of oatmeal, 1/2 cup of wheat bran, 1 egg, 1 banana.

3. LEFTOVERS!! I didn’t use any extra sugar, instead, I borrow the sweetness from 2 chopped chocolate chip cookies, and 1 scoop of strawberry ice cream cake. for the top, is the finely chopped chocolate crisp from the party.

Sorry I am pretty liberal (again!) in terms of cake ingredients. I am not selling my cake anyway, as long as it taste good, I am 100% satisfied!!!

the ” bean dreg” is actually cashews and sesame. so if you are a NUTS lover as me, you will love the smell when its baking!! and banana just add in another nature sweets for the cake. The red bites (if you can see it) is the ice cream...first time I am using ice cream in my cake, am I nuts????

but I promise, the cake is so dense and moist, and very fulfilling !! it instantly become my new breakfast lover. 2 slices are even not enough !!

last but not least, I am serving some cashew milk with my soymilk maker:

with about 1/2 cup of cashews, 2 tsp of black sesame which is good for your hair and digestion system.  I am STILL excited with my new baby, and have so many thoughts about my morning drinks:

My little pinky piggy friend again being my best accompany for breakfast!! I wish you could try them too!!

Have a good night everyone 😀

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Filed under Fushion Dishes, Healthy Breakfast, Light Delight, Sweet Endings

Hey have you try that Banana Hammocks lately ???

Chocolate Covered Katie invents them I guess. M’m M’m soooo good . and yes I know there is a naughty joke about it, and I assume you know as well, hahahaha 😀

I am kinda addicted to Nuts recently, especially NUTS butter 😀 (hey wait, aren’t I always ????) and I find my new fav: TJ’s fat-free cottage cheese (middle).  Light and cheesy, only 70 Cal for 1/2 cup.

PB (middle) is the TJ’s raw creamy, unsalted one. very very “liquidly” style. I love its consistency.

AB (top) is the TJ’s raw chunky, unsalted one. very very thick and chunky.

So now you can define my Nuts butter profile: RAW and UNSALTED.

this Banana Hammock definitely hit the spot !!!  can you still sit still and not try it out?? 😀

The other thing I made today is with Gigantic Mushroom I got from super market.

I put a peeler over it, so you can see how big these white babes are:

I am super excited to find them, and the first idea pops up is a Stuffed Gigantic Mushroom

Ingredients:

1. mix silk tofu and corn beef (no salt needed!)

2. clean the mushroom and make the whole BIGGER (like that on the left ).

3. Stuff it and lightly spray on some veggie oil, and sprinkle some TJ’s seafood grill seasoning. I know it’s not seafood – but that grill seasoning has tons of nice herb and spice that I couldn’t forgo !

4. Bake at 350 degree, for 30 minutes.

Ready to serve: -D

The flavor of corn beef well mixed with silky tofu, as well of the mushroom. Smoky, and very filling !  Hope you like it! 

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Filed under Fushion Dishes, Healthy Breakfast, Sweet Endings

I love Roasted Turkey Skin!!!

Yupp, I know, it’s fatty, it’s oily, it’s unhealthy…..but why the turkey skin taste so, so, so good, so, so, so irresistible????

Can you understand why I’m saying that?? 😛

Yesterday was about being thankful, being thoughtful , and being tender-hearted. and of cause, as my very first “whole turkey” experience, I am being extremely open to the really good fat, really good calories, really good carb. I ate , em, probably a whole turkey leg skin, plus, packs of dark and white meat, plus, the “pie chart” that I wouldn’t mind learning – pecan pie, pumpkin pie (traditional), pumpkin pie (lighter), tiramisu…., and I’m sorry I lose track of how many scoop of “smash” potato, and “smash” yam, I generously admitted to my plate 😀

well, don’t blame me, puuuleease! I was just so excited to enjoying my first “very American” Thanksgiving :

So here is the table, with that HUGE turkey dazzling my eyes…..Lili and I “steal” (we call it “sample”, but Dan call it steal!) the corn bread stuffings, the mashed sweet potato , and potato. Plus, almond chocolate, Wasabi peanuts. oh yah my fav!!

I really like their plates:

So I can’t help take quite a few pictures of that table setting. They got a whole dozen of these plates for 6  dollars!  they looks pretty nice for the price!

oh btw, do you know what’s my favorite way of eating turkey meat???

NOT with gravy!!!!

BUT with Garlic Salt!!!

My friends laughed at me for quite a while 😀 but I promise, they really taste great!!

 

 

 

 

and, last but not least, here comes my layered sweeten rice cake:

are you able to see that four layers: white sweeten rice, red beans, white sweeten rice, and puree red bean and purple sweeten rice, plus: coconut flakes!

I hope it doesn’t disappoint you guys!  I have sweet teeth….

AND…..

I am being encouraged and inspired today, because I finally see the movie :  Julie and Julia !!! it talks about the blog girl who LOVE food finally turn this into a wonderful career. She find so much joy in cooking. Setting up a goal, and finish that 524 recipes from Julia’s “Master the Art of French Cooking”, it’s such a big achievement. Some point in my life, I will definitely do that. Because I really find the joy in researching recipes, creating new dishes, and sharing with the blog friends and friends around me.

what makes me really touched is the support from their beloved ones. Being really understanding, supportive, and sometimes “crazy” about cookings, makes Julie and Julia both succeed in their career.

Love makes life beautiful.

Love makes your little dreams sounds big,

Love makes your crazy idea turning into a career,

Love makes your pain, effort , tears, all worthwhile.

Love makes life beautiful.

Yes, it does.

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Filed under "Local" Cuisine, Sweet Endings

Creamy TOFU source, Purple Marble Cake

If you opt for creamy white sauce every time waiter asks for topping of that linguine, – please count me in! I love the smooth texture and cheesy smell of the white sauce… and not surprisingly, I feel guilty every time I indulge.  But this creamy tofu sauce is definitely gonna replace your guilt with pure pleasure : really light yet decadent flavor of that creamy white sauce !

It goes well with Italian noodles for sure, and of cause salad greens. I was inspired by actor’s diet blog post of a tofu sauce, she kindly send me the link – yet I am overwhelmed by the ingredients’ names…they are just beyond my limited ingredients-name-pronunciation abilities!!  So I am again relying on my instinct for food… 🙂 Sorry Lynn, I am being sloppy ! but the sauce ends up really good!!!

So here is my simple ingredients for creamy tofu sauce:

1. 1/2 cup of silky tofu.

2.  1/4 cup of mozzarella cheese.

3.  TJ’s Lemon and Pepper, to seasoning.

4. 1 tsp of sesame oil ( you can use olive oil too:)

and that’s all!!

Blends them really well until this smooth texture (oops, not that smooth, huh :P)

I promise that tofu sauce is 100% creamy white sauce flavor, yet much less fat and cal. The consistency of the sauce turns out perfect in my first try, you can make it thicker or thinner as you prefer.

Top endives and roasted red peppers with creamy tofu sauce, packed with protein and veggies.

I wish the restaurants  offer me this option too!!!

As my tradition, dessert is served. Gee. I am adapting all the recipes – is that a bad sign of a chef ???

So my light version of famous marble cake today is : purple marble cake

The lovely purple color comes from the red bean and purple sweeten rice. I am addicted to creamy red bean  spread as you all know. and this time I add in some purple sweeten rice which said to be good for girls’ blood system.

So for purple part is the red bean spread and blended purple sweet rice porridge. white part – simple and easy as the ordinary cake base. I guarantee the mixture of the two result in this purple-ish color:

“Life is short, so have some dessert first” . (from a small breakfast cafe in country side Australia).

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Filed under Fushion Dishes, healthy spread, Light Delight, Sweet Endings

Refined Southern Dish, and Rejuvenated cheese crackers

I have never thought about cooking southern dishes, and to be honest, I haven’t done any research about southern style food. But this one for sure is one of them. Per request of my dear guest, I make this simple but flavorful dish with a little twist.

so, have you guys ever heard of ” Corned Beef and Cabbage” ? ? ?

dang dang! here it is!

well, not exactly the same as you would expected, but this is my version to stuff in more veggies and make it lighter for this dish.

This is the first time I heard about the dish, especially the corned beef makes me struggled quite a bit. Just finish watching the movie of “food Inc.” , anything corn related makes me feel fat for no reason….

Mix the corned beef, cabbage, and cubed potato together, (no salt added since the sodium in the corn beef is already 20% DV !

I stuff them in the halved red bell pepper, with some mozzarella cheese,  30 min at low 300 degrees. Done !!!

The juice comes from corned beef has savored the whole thing….especially potatoes, I haven’t had them for about one year! and they taste really good!!! For the roasted bell peppers, juicy and sweet, I love them!!!

the only thing is cabbage goes a bit dried out because of long time roasting….if you can cook the potatoes beforehand and stuff the mix in, maybe 15 min would be good enough :-D.

re, re, re, re,…., sorry if I remind you of the email box!!!  ^_^ the rejuvenated cheese cracker???

yupp! I got some pure cheese cracker from coco yesterday (thx u !), they said they are made of 100% cheese….

hoooooray !! I am a CHEESE person, and I would love to have anything made of cheese – mild or sharp, whatever, anything related to milk just makes me happy

well, I tasted some of them, too much is not a good thing…the cracker is a bit oily, and way too salty for my taste buds….But as I never really toss food, I always think of ways to re-use them 😀

So, for the whole day, I’ve been thinking of how to make them re-juvenate and exaggerate that cheese flavor….

suddenly the pumpkin cheese muffin from Starbucks pops in ….that was really something I remembered and marketed for a long time….

Yuppppy ! so I am gonna re-do the cheese cracker version pumpkin muffin !

I chopped the cheese crackers first and have some small ones for the tops.

The other ingredients:

1.  2 cup of self-raising flour ( I am almost done with that big bag ! )

2. 2 tsp of sugar.

3. 1 tsp of butter.

4. chopped cheese cracker ( about 1/2 cups).

5. 1 egg.

alright, i won’t bored you with the easy muffin making steps, just do it!

don’t forget to top with our little guys 😀

350 Degree oven, 20 min.

Do you see the cheese melted on top of that muffin??? the inside has a subtle melted cheese flavor as well!!!!

I wish you were here to share with me this sweet treat 😀

btw, that’s my BIG one bite of this cutie!

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Filed under "Local" Cuisine, Sweet Endings

Layered Tofu Cake, Swirl Coffee Cookies. Perfect Saturday.

I can’t believe it have been raining for like one week!! how come Maryland is having so much rain this year?

as the weather gets cold, my craving for warm dishes spikes, especially for warm soups. Today I just accidentally make a realy delish soup . Yes, by accdident!

So the meal is called a steamed layered tofu cake with salmon and shiitakes …oh my. that’s a long name without any fun ! yet you have to forgive me – I have been totally brain damaged after 7 days of paper writing!

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This dish is fully packed with protein:  let me just do a quick statistical analysis:

1. Salmon: 21 g.

2. Tofu: 9g.

3. Shiitake: 12.5g.

Sounds like a perfect source of good protein meal ! So I make a layered Tofu Cake with Salmon and Shiitakes.

to be frank, I have no idea that after steaming this for 10 min, the dish will turn into a soup. But the soups just taste surprisingly good! it’s just full of the flavors from that savory salmon , and smoky shiitake..plus, the salmon is perfectly “merged” with the the silky tofu, which makes it like a real burger in some sense 🙂

stacking those tofu , salmon and shiitake slides is nothing technically challenging. Well, my tips is : please please please make the tofu slices BIG enough to hold your greedy salmon input! I almost crashed one stack because I am trying to put 4-5 salmons in it!

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here is the ingredients:

1. 2 Shiitake, soaked in hot water for about 15 minutes until they are soft and soaky. Thinly slice them.

2. about 10 slices of salmon, marinade them with light soysauce and cooking wine , for about 20 mins (depends on how thin you can slice them!)

3. Silky Tofu please. that taste just much better when steamed.

stack everything together with whatever order you like ( and I don’t mind if you stack them with 5-6 layers with your super good hands).

steam them for 10 minutes. sprinkle with finely chopped basil to fresh it up.

It is such a satisfied meal !!!

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May I serve some swirl coffee cookies as well?

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They are a great pick-me-up. because, the dark part, is purely coffee …and I pour in around 1/2 cup of instant coffees, not intentionally!!! So I can only have them in the morning 🙂

I guess i dont’ need time to explain how a cookie taste like. yeah, they are cookies, makes lifes so much sweeter, perfect to go with tea or coffee if you are not scared of coffine intake today.

I trust my brand cookies – I know exactly what’s in it:

1. Dough #1:  1 Cup self-raising flour + 1tsp of sugar + 1/4 of veggie oil.

2. Dough #2:  1 Cup self-raising flour + 1tsp of sugar + 1/4 of veggie oil+ 1/2 instant coffee (I guess 1/3 cup would be enough, if you don’t like the bitter flavor from coffee).

3. Knead two doughs and stack them , roll it .

4. after freezing the combination dough for about 40 min, cut it, bake them at 350 degree oven, about 20 minutes. Before it cools down, sprinkle with unsweetened coconut flakes.

Should I still call it a guilty pleasure???? come on, there is even no butter in my cookie!! 🙂

Hope every one has a great weekend and enjoy cooking creations!

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Filed under Fushion Dishes, Sweet Endings