Friday, March 31, 2006
Close up of ingredients: green onions, elephant ear mushrooms, cilantro, shrimp, lilly buds, jalapeno,
I threw together a cellophane noodle soup last night. I left out the potatoes.
Wednesday, March 29, 2006
I totally cheated this time around by picking up the salmon burgers from Whole Foods. Strawberries are in season are oh so sweet right now. I made a nice salsa for the burgers.
Strawberry Mango Salsa
- mango, diced
- strawberries, hulled and sliced
- hot house english cucumber, diced (i think i will leave this out next time)
- green onions
- jalapeno pepper, diced
- cilantro, chopped finely
- lemon juice (or champagne vinegar)
Teriyaki Salmon Burgers
- Salmon, chopped
- whole wheat bread crumbs
- sesame seeds (black and white)
- green onions, chopped
- soy sauce
- black pepper
- sesame oil
Tuesday, March 28, 2006
I've been on a spinach and strawberries kick lately. I have my bacon spinach salad at almost every meal. I buy the bagged spinach and top with hardboiled eggs, pine nuts, julienned sundried tomatoes with herbs, bacon, and whatever I have in the fridge. Yesterday I had grape tomatoes. The strawberries tastes so yummy. I think they are yummier after I cut them up.
Sunday, March 26, 2006
Thursday, March 23, 2006
Mellon decided to come out and throw a lunch meeting at our office. Our facilities were not good enough for them so they brought tables, chairs, and the works. They transformed our modest conference room into a magnificent banquet hall. I wish I was able to get pictures of the setup and the food. I did get a picture of one of the fancy schmancy cupcakes. I didn't get a picture of the tiramisu.
Wednesday, March 22, 2006
Strings is one of my new favorite restaurants in Denver. The food is superb. The service is superb. This is how fine dining should be. We went there for Ben's farewell lunch and last night we held the farewell party for one of our VPs there. One of our employees has a special relationship with the owner and was able to work out a nice deal for the party. The food was delicious. The service was excellent. They brought out several different kinds of shrimp appetizers, bleu cheese mushroom caps, chicken bites, mini steak burgers, tomatoe, bisque, and crab cakes (the best dish of the night). For the dessert they brough out trays of yummy brownie bites, little apple thingys, and fresh strawberries. The photo above is of the desser tray. I took a picture with my phone and I think I moved that is why it is so blurry.
The picture below is a silly picture of us. Since my mouth was full I tried to duck away from the picture. You can see my empty plate in one hand and my drink in another.
Sunday, March 19, 2006
Thursday, March 16, 2006
I was feeling kinda crappy last night. I even forgot to add salt to the chicken mixture.
- poblano peppers; de-seeded and deveined
- ground chicken or turkey (i used ground chicken breast this time)
- cellophane noodle; soaked
- elephant ear mushroom
- fish sauce
- green onions; chopped
- cilantro; chopped
- I can't remember if I threw anything else in.
- mixed baby greens including baby spinach
- satueed chicken breast
- turkey pepperoni slices
- hardboiled eggs
- grape tomatoes
- pine nuts
- cheese (mozzarella & parmesan)
- black pepper
- i can't remember what else. maybe i'll throw some mushrooms in.
Wednesday, March 15, 2006
Monday, March 13, 2006
Also made muffins for sb club.
2 1/2 C All Bran Extra Fiber Cereal
1 1/2 bananas (reserve half for garninsh)
1 1/2 C 1 % milk (or use equivalent powdered buttermilk)
1 T baking powder
1/2 t kosher salt
12 packets splenda
1/4 torani sugar free caramel syrup
1 t vanilla
1/2 C flax seed meal
1/2 C lowfat plain yogurt
1 1/4 C whole wheat flour
oat bran (optional for garnish)
1. Measure ceral into mixing bowl and stir in milk. Let sit a few minutes until bran is softened.
2. Add mashed bananas, reserving half a banana for garnish.
3. Stir in baking powder, salt, splenda, syrup, vanilla, egg, and flax meal.
4. Fold in flour.
5. Spoon into lined muffin tins and garnish with oat bran and banana slice. Bake in 400 degree over for 25 minutes of until done.
- Rice Noodles, soaked in hot water ( I usually use the pho noodles sold in the refrigerated section but in this case I experimented with mung bean or cellophane noodles)
- chicken breast, sliced
- extra firm tofu
- pad thai sauce
- fish sauce
- bean sprouts
- green onions
Since I baked the muffins the morning I went ahead and put the cube of tofu on a strainer and placed a heavy casserole on top to squeeze out the excess water. I then sliced the tofu and put into the oven to dry. I also stuck a pan of peanuts in there to toast.
The dish turned out a lot better than I had expected. The mung bean noodles were different but not bad at all.
Tom Yum Soup
- Can of chicken broth
- chicken bones that I had in the freezer
- chicken breast strips
- fish sauce
- tom yum base
- chili in soy bean oil (i use the patainorasing brand)
Saturday, March 11, 2006
- whole wheat pastry flour
- whole wheat flour
- almond flour
- oat bran
- flax seed meal
- flax seeds
- chia seeds
- steel cut oats
- wheat berries
- nuts (peanuts, pine nuts, walnuts, almonds, pecans, pistachios...)
- whole wheat pasta
- rice flour
- whole chicken
- IQF chicken drums
- ground chicken breast
- ground turkey italian sausage
- ground turkey
- turkey carcass
- IQF shrimp
- applewood smoked bacon
- canned salmon
- canned sardines (in tomato sauce, in water, in green chile...)
- canned chicken breast
- eggplant slices
- calabasa squash
- canned tomatoes
- canned green beans
- frozen broccoli
- frozen endamame
- plain nonfat yogurt
- plain low fat yogurt
- 1 % milk
- powdered egg whites
- powdered buttermilk
- sour cream
- riccotta cheese
- parmesan cheese
- unsalted butter
- almost everything you can think of
- garam masala
- curry powder
- curry paste
- herbes de provence
- hungarian paprika
- pumpkin pie spice
- soy sauce
- fish sauce
- vinegars (cider, balsamic, seasoned rice...)
- oyster sauce
- sweet chili sauce
- coconut milk (canned & powdered)
- and so on
I'm thinking I can make:
- chicken adobo
- stuffed poblanos (grandma's meat filling)
- salmon burgers
Friday, March 10, 2006
This is a picture of the yogurt that I have been eating lately. It is basically nonfat plain yogurt (I buy the tubs of Dannon) with sugar free jello powder. People at work nickname it radioactive yogurt and pepto yogurt. The first time I had this I thought I was eating a spoonful of heaven. Lisa was not too impressed the first time she tried it. I found half of it in the sink and the other half in the trash. She now enjoys it and says she will not go back to regular yogurt. It is surprisingly very good. Lisa and I alternate buying a tub of yogurt each week. We keep the mixed yogurt and keep it in the refrigerator at work.
Thursday, March 09, 2006
Celadon Restaurant - Hillcrest
540 University Ave
San Diego, CA 92103
Duck Drunken Noodle, Duck Lad Nar, Choo Chee Duck, Asparagus w/ Shrimp & Chicken, Chicken Shrimp Tofu Pad Thai, Papaya Salad, Tom Yum Krung, Chicken Red Curry w/ Potatoes
Meal for four. I thought it was a bit much when we ran out of room on the table but hey it is not very often that we are able to get together for a meal at Celadon. It used to be part of our girl's night out routine every Friday night. Now everyone is all grown up with their own lives and we are too busy (or too far) to meet at Celadon. I highly recommend Celadon. The sister restaurant, Rama on Fourth in downtown San Diego is equally yummy is a little pricier.
When I go home to San Diego I make the hour and a half drive up to Irvine. Right across the street from UC Irvine is a sandwhich shop called Lee's. For about $2.00 you can get a delicious 10 inch sandwhich filled with meat (I always get the grilled chicken), carrots, daikon. onions, cilantro, jalapeno slices, cucumber, and mayo. It is absolutely heaven. These Vietnamese sandwiches are called banh mi. The store bakes the french baguettes every day for the sandwiches.
The last time I was in California my friend Scott picked me up from LAX and we stopped by Lee's before going down to San Diego. When he came to visit me in Denver he brought a little box of my favorite little custard filled cakes called deli manjoo. There are several locations throughout California, Arizona, and Texas. I wish they would open one in Denver. There are NO good banh mi shops in Denver. I tried a little place on Federal Blvd. that my vietnamese nail tech recommended to me. I was disappointed. I've come to terms with the fact that I cannot find many things that I am able to find back home.
Wednesday, March 08, 2006
I have had some weird cravings lately. A couple of days ago I craved sardines. Now that I am thinking about it I do want some more. I want the canned sardines in the tomato sauce. I have a can of the kind packed in water. I wonder what I can do with them. Tomorrow I think I will stop by the grocery store for some chicken livers. I think whenever my body needs iron I start craving chicken liver. I gave blood yesterday. I think that depleted my iron stores. This is what I like to do with chicken liver.
- Chicken Liver (washed and cleaned)
- onions, diced
- celery, rough chop
- carrots, rough chop
- salt & pepper to taste
- dash thyme
- dash tarragon
- flour (althout this time I made it w/out flour)
1. Wash, clean, and pat dry liver.
2. Season with salt & pepper.
3. Dredge in flour
4. Melt butter in saute pan.
5. Saute onions in butter. Add liver a few pieces at a time and brown.
6. Add celery and onions. Cook through.
Tuesday, March 07, 2006
I will post pictures after I put the lasagna in the oven. I prepped and assembled it last night to give the eggplant slices time to absorb the flavors from the sauce. (The picture didn't turn out that great.)
I have no recipe for the sauce. I usually get crushed tomatoes in a can. San Marzanos whenever I can find them. Most brands of crushed tomatoes have sugar added so I buy the cans of whole peeled tomatoes and chop them myself. When Frank showed me how he made his sauce he put the resulting sauce in a blender for me because at that time I did prefer a smooth sauce. The sauce usually starts with olive oil, onion, and garlic. I always use dried oregano because I do not feel the flavor of fresh oregano is much better than the dried. What I do believe in is fresh basil. I didn't use fresh this time. I add veggies such as red bell pepper or a jar of roasted pimentos to help sweeten up the sauce. The meat also usually varies. Sometimes it is just ground turkey or ground turkey italian sausage. It is never the same. I vary it up according to what I have on hand.
I partially peeled the eggplant and sliced them up really thinly. I did consider also using zucchini slices but I decided against it and put them back in the fridge. The ricotta cheese was mixed with eggs, parsely, and a pinch of nutmeg. I didn't have any frozen spinach otherwise that would have been layered with everything else. I put the sauce on the bottom of the pan, layers fof eggplant, ricotta mixture, fresh grated parmesan, mozzarella cheese, and topped it all off with a sprinkling of pine nuts. Pine nuts are yummy!
Edit***In my opinion the eggplant lasagna was not that great. Even after salting and squeezing out the water, the eggplant still made the dish really watery. I think next time I make it I will roast the slices in the oven first to dry them out and to cook them a little more. I felt the eggplant could have been a little more cooked. It was watery and hard to slice. When I took it to work the next day it sliced very nicely. Lisa said it was delicious. Cinque didn't even notice that the noodles were missing. Karen had it for dinner and the next day she said it was delicious. It wasn't a disaster afterall. I still was not convinced it was lasagna.
Sunday, March 05, 2006
This recipe stemmed from my cravings for muffins. Flax is a seed full of omega 3 fatty acids. The seed is ground up into a meal. The texture is fluffy; almost spongey. I can't really compare the flavor to anything. The caramel syrup adds a different dimension to to the muffins.
1/4 C 1% milk
2 T butter; melted or canola oil
10 packets splenda
2 T Torani Sugar Free Caramel Syrup
2 t cinnamon
1 t nutmeg
pinch kosher salt
3/4 t baking powder
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 C flax seed meal
1/4 soy flour
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Whisk together eggs & milk. Whisk in melted butter or canola oil. Add remaining ingredients and mix together gently.
Spray muffin tin with nonstick cooking spray. Divide batter evenly between six muffins tins. Bake 15-20 minutes.
Mole is very time-consuming to make, but you can begin up to three days ahead. The results are well worth the effort. In Mexico, this is served with rice or unfilled tamales.
13 cups water
1 4-pound whole boneless turkey breast with skin, halved lengthwise
1 large white onion, peeled, quartered
1 head of garlic, outer skin removed, cut crosswise in half
1 1/2 teaspoons fine sea salt
1 cup lard or canola oil
8 dried mulato chiles, stemmed, seeds and membranes removed
6 dried pasilla chiles, stemmed, seeds and membranes removed
5 dried ancho chile, stemmed, seeds and membranes removed
Nuts and seeds
1 tablespoon canola oil
1/2 cup whole almonds
1/4 cup pecans
1 tablespoon unsalted roasted peanuts
1/4 cup shelled pepitas
3 tablespoons sesame seeds
1/4 cup canola oil
1 large ripe dark-skinned plantain, peeled, thickly sliced
1 pound tomatillos, husked, rinsed, coarsely chopped
1 pound plum tomatoes, coarsely chopped
2/3 cup raisins flavorings
1 large white onion, peeled, cut into 8 wedges
12 large garlic cloves, unpeeled
5 whole cloves
1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
5 whole allspice berries
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1/2 teaspoon aniseed
1 1-inch piece canela* or cinnamon stick
1 teaspoon dried Mexican oregano
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon fine sea salt
3 tablespoons canola oil
1 3x2x1-inch bread slice from firm French roll
3 5- to 6-inch-diameter corn tortillas, coarsely chopped
6 ounces Mexican chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup chopped piloncillo** or (packed) dark brown sugar
2 cups (about) low-salt chicken broth (if necessary)
Combine all ingredients in large pot. Bring to boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer until turkey is just cooked through, skimming foam, about 35 minutes. Transfer turkey to bowl; cover and chill. Strain and reserve broth in pot.
Heat 1/2 cup lard in large skillet over medium-high heat. Working in batches, fry all chiles until beginning to blister and change color, about 15 seconds per side (do not burn). Using tongs and shaking off excess lard, transfer chiles to another large pot. Add 4 cups reserved turkey broth; bring to boil. Reduce heat; simmer uncovered until chiles are very soft, about 35 minutes. Strain liquid into 4-cup measuring cup; add enough reserved turkey broth to measure 4 cups. Chop chiles. Working in batches, puree chiles and 4 cups chile broth in blender until smooth.
Heat remaining 1/2 cup lard in same pot over medium heat until almost smoking. Press chile puree through large mesh strainer into pot (mixture will sputter and bubble vigorously). Stir until puree thickens enough to form path on bottom of pot when wooden spoon is drawn across, about 15 minutes. Remove chile puree from heat.
For nuts and seeds:
Heat 1 tablespoon oil in large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add almonds and stir until color deepens, about 1 minute. Add pecans and peanuts; stir 1 minute. Add pepitas; stir 30 seconds. Transfer to blender. Add sesame seeds to skillet; stir 1 minute. Transfer 2 tablespoons sesame seeds to small bowl and reserve for garnish. Place remaining 1 tablespoon sesame seeds in blender with nuts. Add 1/2 cup reserved turkey broth and blend until thick puree forms. Add nut-and-seed puree to pot with chile puree. Cook over very low heat, stirring often, while preparing fruits.
Heat 1/4 cup oil in same skillet over high heat. Add plantain and sauté until golden, about 3 minutes. Using slotted spoon, transfer to paper towels. Add tomatillos and tomatoes to skillet; sauté until slightly softened, mashing with fork. Reduce heat to medium-low; simmer until thickened, stirring often, about 25 minutes. Add raisins and plantain; simmer 10 minutes, stirring often. Cool slightly.
Working in batches, puree tomatillo mixture in blender with 2 cups reserved turkey broth. Strain mixture through sieve into chile-nut puree, pressing on solids to extract as much mixture as possible; discard solids in sieve. Continue cooking puree over very low heat while preparing flavorings, stirring often.
Cook onion and garlic cloves in dry heavy medium skillet over medium heat until beginning to brown and soften, turning often, about 15 minutes. Cool slightly. Coarsely chop onion; peel garlic. Place in blender.
Stir cloves in same skillet over medium-high heat until fragrant, about 20 seconds. Transfer cloves to spice mill or coffee grinder; add peppercorns and next 7 ingredients. Grind finely. Add to blender. Add 1 cup reserved turkey broth; blend until smooth. Stir spice mixture into chile-nut puree. Simmer mole over very low heat 30 minutes to blend flavors while preparing thickeners, stirring often (mole will bubble thickly).
Heat 1 1/2 tablespoons oil in medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add bread slice; fry until golden, about 1 1/2 minutes per side. Transfer to blender. Add 1 1/2 tablespoons oil and tortillas to skillet; sauté 2 minutes. Transfer to blender with bread. Add 2 cups reserved turkey broth; blend until smooth. Add to mole; simmer 10 minutes.
Add chocolate and piloncillo to mole; simmer over low heat 20 minutes, stirring often, scraping bottom of pot and adding more turkey broth (or chicken broth if necessary) by 1/2 cupfuls if mole is too thick (up to 2 cups more broth may be needed). Season with salt. Continue simmering over low heat until streaks of oil form on mole surface, about 10 minutes longer. (Can be made 3 days ahead. Cool slightly. Chill uncovered until cold, then cover and keep refrigerated. Rewarm over low heat, stirring and adding more broth if desired, before continuing.)
Cut turkey into 1/3-inch-thick slices. Add to hot mole; simmer until turkey is heated through, about 10 minutes. Arrange turkey slices on platter. Spoon mole over; sprinkle with sesame seeds.*Mexican cinnamon sticks with a delicate, floral flavor.
**Mexican raw sugar shaped into hard cones. Smaller chunks are sometimes labeled panocha. If neither is available, substitute an equal weight of packed dark brown sugar.
This is an adaptation of my yummy chicken red curry. I threw this together one night to be south beach friendly. I will have to post the original recipe another time.
red curry paste
kaffir lime leaves
light coconut milk
red bell peppers
Excuse the quality of the picture. The picture was taken with my cell phone.
Chris is coming over for lunch tomorrow. I invited him to come see my new place and help me unpack. I decided to make Tandoori Chicken and then I had to think of some side dishes to serve it with. The chicken in marinating in the refrigerator right now. I already made the raita and precooked the chickpea curry. It just needs to finish cooking tomorrow. I may or may not make brown rice basmati with some cardamon and peas. I'll also make hot chai tea. For dessert (not very indian) is warm sugarless flourless chocolate cake with chocolate almond low carb ice cream. Okay I am starting week four of South Beach so this menu is very South Beach friendly. The brown basmati rice is a maybe at this point.
3 chicken breasts
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 lemon, juiced
1 cup nonfat plain yogurt
1/2 onion, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger root
4 teaspoons garam masala
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon annatto seeds, crushed
1 teaspoon yellow food coloring
1 teaspoon red food coloring
2 teaspoons finely chopped cilantro
1. Cut slits in chicken.
2. Combine all ingredients and marinate overnight.
3. Broil in oven until internal temperature reaches 165 degrees.
2 cucumbers, seeded and sliced thinly
1 roma tomato, diced
1/2 cup plain nonfat yogurt
2 T sour cream
1/2 t kosher salt
1/4 t groung cumin
1/4 t paprika
2 T cilantro, chopped
Mix all ingredients together.
Curried Chickpea s
3 cups dried chickpeas or garbanzo beans (par-cook)
2 T olive oil
1/2 onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic
3 t curry powder
1 t cinnamon
1 t garam masala
salt and pepper TT
water as needed
1. Par-cook chickpeas. Drain, rinse, and set aside.
2. Sautee onion and garlic in olive oil. Add spices and sautee until fragrant. Add chickpeas and water. Cook until tender. Garnish with cilantro.
- brown basmati rice
- vegetable oil
- cinnamon stick
- cardamom pods
- whole cloves
- cumin seed
- 1 small onion, thinly sliced
Chai Tea was made from boiling 1% milk with a few Celestial Seasonings Chocolate Caramel Enchantment Chai Tea.
Saturday, March 04, 2006
Blueberry-Lemon Muffins (The Winner!)
2 cups flour
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp baking soda
2 tsps baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 egg (beaten)
1 8 oz container fat free Lemon yogurt
1/2 C buttermilk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
3/4 cup dried blueberries
zest from one lemon
1/4 cup white sugar
5 T all-purpose flour
1/8 cup butter, cubed
1 teaspoons ground cinnamon
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Fold wet ingredients into flour mixture until just mixed and lumpy. Fold in blueberries and lemon zest. (I use a plastic pastry scraper to mix the batter.) Spoon into lined muffin cups, fill almost to the top of muffin cup and sprinkle with crumb topping. To make crumb topping: mix together crumb topping ingredients, making sure butter is incorporated with other ingredients. Bake at 400 degrees for about 18 minutes until golden brown on top and toothpick comes out dry.