Saturday, April 28, 2012

Baked Chili and Garlic Shrimp

Baked Chili and Garlic Shrimp 
Shrimp with Brown Rice and Steam Spinach

If you are looking for something quick and simple for dinner, I have an answer-baked chili and garlic shrimp. It simple and it doesn’t take long. Read more for the simple recipe.  I complemented the shrimp with brown rice and spinach. I cooked the brown rice in the rice cooker and once it was done put some spinach on top and let it stream on top of the rice in the rice cooker for about 5-10 minutes.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Vegetable Curry

Vegetable Curry

I was in a mood for curry so I made some vegetable curry and served it with brown rice. The primary ingredient in curry powder and also an ingredient I added more of in my curry is turmeric. According to Ayurvedic medicine, a study of medicine that originated in India and focuses on longevity, turmeric has many great benefits. It strengthens digestion and has antibacterial, anti-flammatory, antioxidant, anti-tumor, and anti-amyloidal properties.  This powerful spice may also help improve memory. On addition, turmeric has valuable external use for cuts and burns because of its anti-flammatory property and its ability to stimulate tissue growth. I totally support the use of turmeric and curry in cooking. I should  definitely use it more often in my cooking. Hope you enjoy my curry recipe. Read more for recipe.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Sugar Cookies

Additive Sugar Cookies

Sugar cookie time. I found a recipe for Chewy Sugar Cookies on  I thought it would be a good idea to reduce the sugar from one and a half cups of sugar to one and a quarter cups of sugar since I do not like my cookies too sweet; however, I was wrong. The reduced sugar failed to make the cookies chewy. Although the cookies were not chewy, they had a nice texture. They were medium soft and had somewhat of a slight crumbly texture. In addition, they were delicious and additive. The cookies’ strong buttery and buttermilk taste will keep you coming back for more so please control yourself. I had a little try controlling myself; hopefully you will do better than me.  Read more for the recipe. I hope you enjoy!!!

Saturday, March 31, 2012

Curried Egg Salad Sandwich

Curried Egg Salad Sandwich

Something easy to make is egg salad. I recommend this to anyone who likes eggs especially boiled eggs. However, I would not recommend anyone to eat it on a daily basis because it is loaded with mayo and consists egg yolks, which can increase bad cholesterols.  It’s a nice to have once in awhile.  The egg salad goes well with bread. I had mine with a lightly toasted Kaiser roll. I hope you enjoy the recipe. The curry was very creamy and the curry powder added a kick to the salad. Read more for the recipe.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Air-Popped Popcorn- Kettle Popcorn, Plain Popcorn, and Butter Popcorn

Popcorn packaged in zip lock bags

My Presto PopLite air popcorn machine came in the mail awhile ago, but I have not got a chance to use it until recently. I love air popcorn because it is delicious and a healthier alternative to snacks such as chips and crackers.  There is no oil needed to pop the corn and 2 cups of plain air popcorn is only 62 calories.  Although I added butter and sugar to make my homemade butter and kettle popcorn, it is still a healthier alternative to popcorns out in the market because I have control over the butter and sugar I add. In addition, there are no preservatives.

I went a little wild and made 3 batches of popcorn-plain popcorn, kettle popcorn, and butter popcorn. Read more for instructions on how I made these different kinds of popcorn. In the future, I am planning to explore different seasonings for my popcorn now that I have a popcorn machine. Maybe during the holidays, I will make an assortment of flavored of popcorn to give out to my friends and family---oh the possibilities.

Plain Air popcorn: Just add 1/3 cup of dried corn kernel to the machine and then plug in the power. Before you know it you will have a big bowl of delicious popped corn.
Adding kernels to the popcorn machine

Kernels popping

Kernels still popping

Almost finish popping

Finished product

Kettle popcorn: Pop kernels in the popcorn machine. In a saucepan, heat about 2/3 cp of brown sugar, 2 tbsp of oil, and 2 tbsp of water. Stir the mixture constantly until all the sugar has dissolved. This process should take a few minutes. Once all the sugar has dissolve and the mixture has a somewhat sticky thick texture, drizzle it into the popcorn and toss until evenly coated. I covered the big bowl with a big pan lid and shook the popcorn to toss. You can also just use a spoon.

Sugar mixture for kettle corn

Kettle Corn

Butter popcorn: Add about 1 tbsp of butter to mini cup that is placed on top of the popcorn popper. I used I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter instead of butter. The butter will melt while the popcorn is popping. When the corn stops popping, drizzle the butter in and toss. Enjoy!!!

Unmelted butter added to cup on top of popcorn machine

Melted butter

Butter Popcorn

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Stir Fried Vegetable Macaroni

Stir Fried Vegetable Macaroni

Lately, I have not been cooking much and eating out, mainly foods on the go. I think I am going to try to get in the habit of freezer cooking. In college, I used to cook large amounts at a time to freeze and eat at a later time. Eating out too much can be unhealthy, especially since salads and vegetables are not my first choice when I am hungry. Prepared foods are usually loaded with sodium and fat so it’s better to cook for myself and freeze leftovers in case I am too lazy or don’t have time to cook. In addition, it saves money when you prepare foods yourself. This weekend I made enough stir-fried Macaroni for 4 to 6 servings. I had some for lunch and saved some dinner. Then I froze the rest. Read more for the recipe.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Broken Rice with Grilled Pork, Shredded Pork, and Egg Quiche from Pho Ha Saigon

Broken Rice with Grilled Pork, Shredded Pork, and Egg Quiche from Pho Ha Saigon

I love Vietnamese food. I usually get Vermicelli with Grilled Pork or Chicken when I go to a Vietnamese restaurant, but this time I decided to get a rice dish. I dined at Pho Ha Saigon in South Philly on Oregon Ave. The Vietnamese restaurant is relatively new. I think it open up about a year ago and according to my mom it has switched owners through the course of the period.  Pho Ha Saigon is a clean restaurant and the waiters are friendly.  I also think the food was overall good and affordable (most of the entrée range from about $7 to $9) so I will give this a Vietnamese restaurant a 4.5 star.  You should definitely try the restaurant if you are in the neighborhood.

At Pho Ha Saigon, I got broken rice with grilled pork, shredded pork, and egg quiche. The dish came with scallions over rice, fresh lettuce and tomato, grilled pork, shredded pork, and an egg quiche that consisted of pork and fungus. You can say it was a very porky dish, which I don’t hate since I like pork. The grilled pork was tender and very flavorful but not too salty.  The egg quiche was very simple. There was not too much ingredients in it and the texture was very soft. I have tasted egg quiche at other restaurants where the egg is a little firmer, had some more ingredients in it such as clear noodles, and some more seasoning such as ground black pepper. I think it really depends how you like your egg quiche.  I thought the simplicity of egg quiche at Pho Ha Saigon added to the lightness of the dish.  The only heavy part of the dish was the grilled pork. Regarding the fish sauce, it was appetizing. The fish sauce was not too sour or too sweet. It had the right balance of sourness and sweetness. I think some restaurants or individuals prepare the sauce too sour or too sweet or too bland, but this one was quite perfect in my opinion.  I really enjoy the lightness of the entrée and that it comes with carb, fresh vegetable, and protein.  If you are looking for foods that are not heavy such as creamy pasta, hoagies, fried foods, curry, etc., you should try some of the dishes on a Vietnamese restaurant menu.