April 20th, 2013. Chilled Minty Sesame Soba Noodles with Soy-Wasbi Dressing

minty sesasme soba noodles

minty sesasme soba noodles

Don was having a potluck and karaoke birthday get-together at his place and of course my immediate thought was “what can I bring on a budget?!”  I also had to factor in the fact that I’d be working all day and would have very limited time to actually cook anything if I wanted to get to his place on time.

I looked in my fridge and staring back at me was this almost whole bunch of mint that I seriously didn’t want to waste. “Ding! Ding! Ding! Ding!”, I thought, cold soba!  I’d been having a craving for something like this anyways and Don’s birthday potluck was a perfect excuse to try my hand at something new 🙂
minty sesasme soba noodles

minty sesasme soba noodles


Although I did end up going out and buying most of my ingredients for this dish it was actually very affordable to procure all I needed.  So I went out and got some grated lemongrass, cucumber, asian white radish, tobiko and wasabi and started developing the dish.

I actually made my own pickeld vegetables! And even bought a mandoline slicer just for this occassion!  I hoped the dish would be a hit just on this fact alone.  Hey, I went out and bought a kitchen appliance just to make this dish. You better all like it!  I made a pickling liquid out of vinegar, salt, sugar and grated lemongrass.  Then I dunked the julienned radish and cucumber and left it in the fridge overnight tasting every few hours to see how much the veg had soaked up the juices.  I wanted it to be crisp, but packing lots of flavor.
minty sesasme soba noodles

minty sesasme soba noodles


After cooking the noodles and putting them in an ice bath I drained them and then coated them with a little sesame oil, salt and pepper.  I then mixed in the pickled veg and mint and even used some of the pickling liquid to keep the noodles nice and moist.

I rolled the noodles into “balls of yarn” slightly smaller than the size of my fist and sprinkled with tobiko for that “POP” and then dusted it with ground sesame seeds.
minty sesasme soba noodles

minty sesasme soba noodles


The dressing I made with soy, wasabi, grated lemongrass and some sugar and took it on the side so guests could add to their preference level of spiciness.

You know what? I impressed myself!  The dish was simply aromatic with a juxtaposition of sweet, savory, minty and tart.  It even had umami making me crave more after my first taste!  Mmmmmm~~~ this was a success in my books and I think everyone at the party enjoyed it as well!  Yay, me!!!!
Advertisements

April 11th, 2013.  Winner Winner Chicken Dinner!

tagine-inspired moroccan chicken

tagine-inspired moroccan chicken




So, I was looking through Epicurious and saw this delicious Chicken Tagine with Chickpeas and Mint recipe and thought to myself “I don’t have a tagine, but this looks delicious and somewhat do-able.  I’m going to make it!”
tagine-inspired moroccan chicken

tagine-inspired moroccan chicken








I got some chickpeas, a pack of chicken drumsticks, a bunch of mint, some chicken stock, ginger and grated lemongrass.
tagine-inspired moroccan chicken

tagine-inspired moroccan chicken









Sorry I don’t have a step-by-step this time around, but trust me when I say, this turned out REAL WELL!  I put mine over rice and it was delish!

For the Epicurious recipe go HERE 😀

March 20th, 2013. Eunice’s Perfect Korean Mini Meat Patties (동그랑땡)~

homemade 동그랑땡

homemade 동그랑땡

 

People wonder why I never cook Korean food. Why would I need to when I have a sister who cooks it so well and lets me eat it ;D

Tonight I came home and Eunice was just about to make some Korean Mini Meat Patties (동그랑땡) and said that I was going to help. Yes, sister! At your command 😀

 

homemade 동그랑땡

homemade 동그랑땡

 

 A traditional Korean side dish, these mini meat patties are like a Korean bite-sized version cross between meatloaf & meatballs.  Made with a ground pork and tofu base mixed with your base aromatics such as garlic, carrots, and onions, it’s crucial to have a perfect mixture if you want the perfect moist and flavorful bite!

 

homemade 동그랑땡

homemade 동그랑땡

 

 

 

 

 

Not overworked and perfectly uniform patties just small enough to fit in the cup of your hand!

homemade 동그랑땡

homemade 동그랑땡

 

 

 

 

 

After a flour and egg coating the next important step is cooking it slow on medium heat in oil. Just like many grilling techniques flipping it over should be at a minimum.

homemade 동그랑땡

homemade 동그랑땡

 

 

 

 

 

Wait until the oil starts to bubble up and the bottom of the patties get that gorgeous yellow color from the egg wash, then gently turn them all over and do the same.

homemade 동그랑땡

homemade 동그랑땡

 

 

 

 

 

 

Too brown and it’s dry and tough, but that beautiful golden yellow with a slight brown hue makes this my personal favorite Korean side dish!

Homemade Strawberry Pie-Cake!

December 24, 2013

March 5th, 2013. Lifegroup~ 

 

homemade strawberry pie-cake

homemade strawberry pie-cake

 

 

 

  It doesn’t feel like a complete week without our weekly lifegroup evenings 🙂  

  Carmi is so sweet and always makes a point of having some sort of goodies when she and Evangel host.  Tonight she made this awesome Strawberry Pie-Cake!  Looks like a pie, but it’s cake inside~ 😀

 

homemade strawberry pie-cake

homemade strawberry pie-cake

 

 

 

 

 

  Indulgent but light, delicious and fresh, hot out of the oven goodness!  I don’t know how she has time to do this after a full day of work, but she’s a super-woman!  Thank you~ 

homemade strawberry pie-cake

homemade strawberry pie-cake

 

 

 

 

 

Sharing life, shooting the breeze, praying together and eating delicious snacks?  All good things, in my book ;D

Chili Cheese Hot Dogs!

November 29, 2013

February 26th, 2013. Chili Cheese Hot Dogs!!

 

chili cheese hot dogs

chili cheese hot dogs

 

I had the most ridiculous craving for chili cheese hot dogs.  Like, you don’t even get it, I was salivating just at the thought of it.  Sometimes with cravings I leave it alone to see if it’s a legitimate craving…let me tell you, after a week the craving was even more pronounced!

 

chili cheese hot dogs

chili cheese hot dogs

 

 

 

It was getting to the point where all I could think of was chili cheese hot dogs….. Hey, don’t judge!  I finally went out to get some ingredients to make some at home.  I had a plan and was ready to put it into action!

I actually do most of my grocery shopping at Superstore and I find the President’s Choice products are not only fairly priced, but very tasty!  Chili?  Let’s give it a go!

 

chili cheese hot dogs

chili cheese hot dogs

 

 

 

I made tin foil “boats” for the hot dogs so I could pop them in the oven and then take them out and eat them easily.  Best idea ever, if I say so myself!  No dish to wash later!  I scored the smokies and pan fried them and then popped them into the buns.

 

chili cheese hot dogs

chili cheese hot dogs

 

 

 

 

I then added the shredded cheese into the sides in between the bun and smokies, then smothered with heated up chili.  Sprinkle some more cheese on top!

 

chili cheese hot dogs

chili cheese hot dogs

 

 

 

 

Stuck these babies into the oven and let the cheese melt down.  MmmmmmmMmm!!  Yes, hot and ready to devour.  Success!!!

December 19th, 2012.  Henry Cooks! 

kimchi fried rice

kimchi fried rice

 

 

Wow, do I have the best brother or what??  With two older sisters hustlin at work and being insanely busy with the busiest season for retail Henry went to H-Mart and bought a few groceries and made us nunas some Kimchi Fried Rice!

kimchi fried rice

kimchi fried rice

 

 

 

 

Putting his kitchen moves on Henry is no stranger in the kitchen!  He’s never been afraid to get into the kitchen and help out, lend a hand and take care of his own hunger if Mom was busy tutoring.  I’m sure this skill has served him well going into university 🙂

kimchi fried rice

kimchi fried rice

 

 

Using our aunt’s homemade kimchi that she gave us last time the family was all together he also added one of the best proteins for this…Spam!  I’m no snob when it comes to food and cooking, and Spam is something we grew up on… I won’t turn my nose up at it 😉

kimchi fried rice

kimchi fried rice

 

 

 

 

 

Topping it off with some cheese I have to say, Henry’s kimchi fried rice was so yummy!  Thank you, bro, for the loving gesture 

October 22nd, 2012. Seattle Trip~!! 

molly moon's - wallingford

molly moon’s – wallingford

 

 

 

 

 

 

After a casual dinner with Henry’s roommates at the Korean chicken and beer place downstairs from their apartment Henry suggested that we go to Molly Moon’s for dessert!

molly moon's - wallingford

molly moon’s – wallingford

 

 

 

 

Molly Moon’s?  Artisanal homemade ice cream?  Uh…yes please!  I’m pretty sure the one we went to was the Wallingford location close to the University of Washington, since it was just a short drive from University Ave.  Side note: How can you not love the fact that their address is 1622 and a 1/2?  Too cute!!

molly moon's - wallingford

molly moon’s – wallingford

 

It’s a small little shop that has soft but bright lighting and seems so inviting.  The sweet tantalizing aroma of fresh dairy and homemade waffle cones beckon you inside…but there’s also a cramped line up so you’re kinda rubber-necking it from the door to see the menu and bouncing on your toes wanting to get in 😉

molly moon's - wallingford

molly moon’s – wallingford

 

 

 

 

 

There were so many interesting flavors to choose from and I really was very very torn…. In the end I opted for the Salted Caramel.  Smoooooth, creamy, decadent and delicious without being overly sweet or salty, this was a true ice cream made with care 🙂

molly moon's - wallingford

molly moon’s – wallingford

 

 

 

 

 

Molly Moon’s, you done good.  I’m not a cold foods kinda gal, but I would come back here to try more flavors and just soak in the sweetness and goodness of the atmosphere!  All thumbs up!

October 6th, 2012. Monica’s Bridal Shower~

monica's bridal shower

monica’s bridal shower




  As Monica’s bridesmaids Meliza, Rina and I had a fun time meeting up at McDonalds for coffee and planning the bridal shower, among other things.  We decided we’d have it at Rina’s home and John Ryu even offered to cater for the event!  Yay!

monica's bridal shower

monica’s bridal shower






We spent the night before putting up most of the decorations, but we did still have a lot to do on the day of.  It’s all in the details and we definitely wanted it to be a perfect day for Monica!  Thank goodness it was a gorgeously sunny day!

monica's bridal shower

monica’s bridal shower








Assortment of glass flower vases borrowed from our church so we could add some bright yellow flowers for some color accent 🙂  Mix and match is in, right? 😉


monica's bridal shower

monica’s bridal shower








Meliza even baked cupcakes for the occassion.  Now that’s a dedicated and loving maid of honor right there 😉  Delicious and so pretty to look at!



monica's bridal shower

monica’s bridal shower







Since the shower was held mid-afternoon we wanted to do kind of a standing afternoon snack situation.






monica's bridal shower

monica’s bridal shower


One simple truth in life: It’s always good to have at least a couple of chef friends 😉  John is kind of our go-to guy for when we need extremely delicious food that looks amazing, is made with care, and fits the budget!  Comedian and chef all in one, John in the kitchen is funny as well as completely capable of putting together great food 😀

monica's bridal shower

monica’s bridal shower




We figured Mexican themed food would be a good way to go for fresh flavors and impact.  Fresh Guacamole anyone?  Perfectly chunky, creamy, with a nice level of heat. Mmmmmmm…. Guacamole!!

monica's bridal shower

monica’s bridal shower









The Pico de Gallo was super refreshing as well.  The saltiness of the chips with the bright acidity of the salsa: so yummy!!




monica's bridal shower

monica’s bridal shower


The definite highlight of the afternoon, though, was definitely the Ahi Tuna Tostadas.  Black and white sesame seed encrusted ahi tuna lightly seared atop a light wasabi cream cabbage slaw and slice of creamy acocado on a deep fried crisp.  The spring onion on top added a little extra spice and pop of color.  Pretty, super delicious and had me going back for more!

monica's bridal shower

monica’s bridal shower




Monica loves a good spinach dip!  For our warm dish we had this Homemade Spinach Dip served with soft baguette slices.  Was a crowd pleaser for sure 🙂  Thanks, John, for all the tasty food 😀

monica's bridal shower

monica’s bridal shower








Good food, fun games, sunshine and a great girlfriend celebrating with friends for getting married!  What a wonderful afternoon 😀

Caffe Divano – Port Moody

September 2, 2013

August 28th, 2012.  Caffe Divano – Port Moody 

 

caffe divano - port moody

caffe divano – port moody

 

 

 

  My usual Spanish Latte at Caffe Divano~ a gorgeous cup of velvety espresso and condensed milk.  Probably my favorite drink here until they get the Maple Latte 😉

July 7th, 2012. Dinner at Yoon & Krista’s~

dinner at yoon & krista's

dinner at yoon & krista’s

 

 

 

Yoon Keun oppa and Krista unni invited me over for dinner at their place.  It’s always nice going over to their home…so calm and serene 🙂  When I arrived oppa was finishing off the dinner, so I helped set the table.

dinner at yoon & krista's

dinner at yoon & krista’s

 

 

 

Homegrown Korean Lettuce is noticably different from what you buy at the store.  So much more tender and almost buttery.  I was so impressed that they actually grew this!  Made dinner that much better 😉

 

dinner at yoon & krista's

dinner at yoon & krista’s

 

 

 

 

 

Brown Rice, since both are trying to be more healthy.  They even sent me home with a little baggy of brown rice since they had too much 🙂

dinner at yoon & krista's

dinner at yoon & krista’s

 

 

 

 

 

The main dish was a yummy Marinated Spicy Pork.  Mildly spicy, slightly sweet with a slight char around the edges: perfect wrapped up in the lettuce with the brown rice, some spicy bean paste and homegrown basil!

dinner at yoon & krista's

dinner at yoon & krista’s

 

 

 

 

 

Bonus!  Broccoli Salad with Almonds and Grapes 🙂

dinner at yoon & krista's

dinner at yoon & krista’s

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Homemade Brownie and Chocolate Sauce with Farmer’s Market Cherries to finish off
the meal.  Scrumptious~!!

 

 

 

Thank you so much, cousins, for having me over and treating me to a homecooked meal…much needed family love 😀