Monday, October 3, 2011

Spicy Buffalo Wings and Homemade Ranch Dressing

Mmmm...who doesn't love spicy buffalo wings!! And on top of that, homemade ranch dressing?!
To be completely honest, Austin wanted Bleu cheese dressing but I can't stand the smell of blue cheese. So he was sweet enough to compromise for ranch. "But." he exclaimed. "I'm not eating store bought ranch, if we're having ranch, it has to be homemade." swoon* And that is another little moment where my heart melts. I put him in charge of making the best ranch dressing recipe.

So there's a few ways to make buffalo wings. One way is to coat the chicken in flour and bake them so they get nice and crispy and suck up all the sauce, and the other option is to marinate them for 8 hours and then bake them so that the chicken has the flavor infused.
Which option do you think I chose?

I washed and patted the chicken wings and legs dry. Salt and peppered them. Coated them in flour and placed them on a baking sheet and baked them for 400 degrees for 30 minutes. Then turned them over and baked them for another 20 minutes.

While the chicken baked in the oven. I made the sauce. NOW. NOBODY TOLD ME HOW MUCH BUTTER GOES INTO BUFFALO WINGS!
Instead of 2 sticks of butter I used one. Jeezus... 2 sticks? Really?

I melted 1 stick of butter, put the heat to low, added about 1/2 cup of Schultz's hot sauce, 1/2 tsp. garlic powder, pepper, and a dash of worcestershire sauce. Poured it all into a big bowl and tossed a few wings at a time.

Really yummy, but I would also make sure you have another appetizer or entree planned because I was still hungry after eating them.

Till next time~

Tofu Lettuce Wraps and Pork Gyoza

My mom used to make us something like this once in a while and I would basically have a whole head of lettuce to myself. And I wonder why my brother was always so skinny. The recipe I use is a knock-off the chinese/vietnamese version and instead of tofu you can substitute ground chicken or pork as well.
I wanted to stay on the healthy side and this is one way to get me to eat tofu.

The tofu mixture consisted of:

1 Block extra firm tofu
1/2 diced yellow onion
1 can diced water chestnuts
1 cup of  chopped bean sprouts
1/2 bunch of  diced green onion
4 cloves garlic minced
1/2 tsp. sesame seed oil
2 tsp. soy sauce
1 tsp. sesame seeds

1. I wash the head of iceberg lettuce really well and leave it to dry. Do this first before you make the tofu mix.

2. I sauteed the onions, garlic and water chestnuts, then added the tofu. Kept it on high heat to burn off as much of the liquid as possible. About 15 minutes. Then I added the sesame seeds, sesame oil, and soy sauce. I think at this point I snuck in some chili flakes too :)
When the tofu is mixed well and the liquid has burned off, turn off the heat and toss in the green onions so they don't lose their color.

3. Throw some gyoza on a pan and fry them until golden brown. Set heat to medium, throw in a 1/4 cup of water and put a lid on it to simmer until all the liquid is burned off.

And enjoy!!! I'm telling you. Easy Peasy~

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Bourbon Slow cooked Pulled Pork

The last pulled pork recipe I made I added pineapple to the mix to add some sweetness, but Austin and I didn't enjoy the chunks as much and it was little too sweet.
This time it was delicious.



  • 1/2 onion, minced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3/4 cup bourbon whiskey
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 tablespoon salt
  • 2 cups ketchup
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 1/3 cup cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/3 teaspoon hot pepper sauce, or to taste

I threw all of the ingredients in the slow cooker along with 3 lbs of pork shoulder cut into 2 inch chunks and let it do it's thing for 8 hours.
Threw together some quick slaw and some whole wheat buns and had an amazing dinner out under our avocado tree in the warm afternoon breeze.

Enjoy and until next time~

Color Me Mine Creation~

Nope. Not food. This post is about my epic journey of painting my own ceramic plate.

It started as a walk down 3rd St. Promenade, doing some window shopping in some of my favorite stores (Aldo shoes, Barnes and Nobel, Sur la Table, and Anthropologie). I walked into Anthropologie for some inspiration and came across their beautiful and colorful plates and bowls. A large serving plate stood out...and the voice in my head screamed I WANT IT!!!!! I turned the plate over and saw that it was $70 for  a plate I might use a few times a year. A bit disgruntled, I stalked out of Anthropologie, grunting at the door girl as I walked by, knowing that she gets a discount and headed to the corner bar to grab a drink.

As I walked to the bar, I glance to the other side of the street and see a colorful sign that said "Color Me Mine" and like a bug to an electric light, I made a beeline to the store.
Cute place fit for having a rich kids birthday party, but chill enough to have a date night on friday. It cost $10 for an all day studio fee and the ceramic plate I wanted was only $30! So instead of paying $70, I could save and could have four really good beers on tap, or ten medium lattes with the left over money.~

Long story short it took me three days to finish the stupid plate. $30 in studio fees and $30 for the plate...coming out to a grand total of $60...saving only $10.
But it's my own creation and I love it. What did I learn from this experience? I learned that it takes a really long time to paint plates, I like painting plates, and Anthropologie can kiss my ass/ hire me as a ceramic artist. :)

I'm excited to go back and do it all over again :)

Till next time~

Seared Halibut with Sauteed Greenbeans and Roasted Cherry Tomato Vierge

Hi guys...
Sorry about not posting for a while. Not having a decent camera is killing me!
And also, a lot of the stuff that I've been cooking are with leftovers in my fridge, and aren't exactly post worthy.

I'm debating on whether or not I want to add a recipe to each post or if I should just talk about and describe what they are. Let me know what you think. I could do either.

This is dish I made a while back...probably in August. The picture has been sitting in my phone and I knew I wanted to post it some day.

Kwesi came over to hang with Austi and I fixed a quick lunch for us. Healthy and light to keep us moving the rest of the day.
I sprinkled the halibut with salt and pepper before I seared them on high heat for a few minutes. In a smaller frypan I sauteed the green beans in a little bit of olive oil and soy sauce. And in a bowl I tossed the cherry tomatoes with onions, salt, pepper, olive oil, lemon juice, and garlic. Threw them under the broiler for a few minutes and by the time the tomatoes were nice and roasted, everything else was done :)

I'm telling you, I'm a really lazy cook. If it's quick and it tastes good, I love it.

Things I would do differently next time for this dish?
I would have gotten halibut with the skin on one side and salt the shit out of it and make it nice and crispy :) I also would've added some fresh rosemary or some sort of herb to the roasted tomato vierge.

Till next time~

Friday, August 26, 2011

Ratatouille 3 Ways~

I love the Pixar movie Ratatouille. Why I don't own it yet is beyond me. I was thinking about how Ratatouille (the dish) reminded the bad guy of his childhood and how nostalgic it was for him. Of course, he's french.

But then I realized that ratatouille was nostalgic for me too. My mom made ratatouille in the mornings before work. She put black olives in them. That was my favorite part.

I bought made a batch of it and like always, made way too much.
So for the first night. We had ratatouille on paparradelle with fresh grated parmesean. (sorry no picks)
For the second night we had ratatouille with cheese tortellinis (pretty creative...not).

The last night I made whole wheat ratatouille calzones.

I'm pretty sure Austin and I got our fill of ratatouille for a while, but my mom would be proud. Thanks mom~

till next time.


Tuesday, August 16, 2011

To my roots

Tonight for dinner I decided to go back to my roots.
I had to call my dad for the recipe, but I knew that he knew it by heart.
I've been skeptical about making authentic Japanese food for Austin because I wasn't sure how he would like it. Turns out he loved it!
Tonights dinner was Asari clam, aspargus and oyster mushroom itame, with a side of ginger pork and brown rice.

Of course you have to have sake and beer. In my dad's ceramic cups :)
Cheers dad, I owe all I know about the love of cooking to you and mom.
Love you.


Monday, August 15, 2011

Snack Time

Today for snack I made a cookie that I have adored for a long time. It's been a while since I've made them and I'm glad I did.
Peanut Butter Hershey Kissed Cookies. Straight from the oven. I love em, the boys love em.
Still trying to figure out why the chocolate bubbles on top... I'd like that not to happen.

Till next time~


Heirloom Tomato with Basil and Feta

Hi guys~
Sorry, it's been a while since I've posted. I've been super busy with work and just haven't made anything noteworthy.
I'm still in the process of getting a camera and hope that I can afford a good one soon :)
This was an appetizer I made a few weeks ago after finding some really great heirloom tomatoes at the farmers market. I just can't imagine cooking an heirloom tomato, it's got so much flavor when it's untouched by heat.
I sliced a large heirloom tomato and dusted it with feta cheese, salt, pepper and julienned fresh basil from the garden.

Simply sublime ~~~

Enjoy the tomatoes while they are in season, my cherry tomatoes just came in and they are delicious right off the vine. They taste nothing like store bought ones.

Till next time.


Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Pulled Pork Sandwiches

Tonights dinner was pulled pork sandwiches, but hold up, don't get too excited. It was pulled pork from Trader Joes and their broccoli coleslaw. It's one of Austi's favorite meals and I had to wait until tonight to eat it since he could be home early.

But alas, the one night he comes home early, he isn't hungry... he swallows it anyways. Not much for being able to really enjoy it. But I can tell you it was really good and super easy to make.

I mixed the coleslaw with goddess dressing, sriracha and pepper. Piled it all on a sprouted sesame seed bun with a little side of arugula.

I don't think Aust has room for the dessert I made today :(
Too bad because its a peach crumble.
Oh well...More for me.


Another Monday Veggie Dinner

This week I was lucky enough to get my hands on some zucchini flowers at the farmers market and I couldn't wait to cook with them. I had just had Eveleigh's version of stuffed squash blossoms loved it. I'm not really sure what they put in them but it was light and delicious.

So as an appetizer for dinner I made Fried Ricotta and basil stuffed blossoms sprinkled with some sea salt. It was good. We brought some over to the neighbors who agreed that they were pretty darn good :)

I think the best part about the blossoms were the base of the flower that had both the delicate texture of the blossom but the base of a zucchini.

For our main course I made Black eye pea wraps with a homemade Arból chili sour cream. Ingredients for this wrap were:

-black eye peas
-red onion
-arbol chili
-sour cream
-asiago cheese
-whole wheat tortilla with flaxseed

Austin actually liked it! I win :)
Probably not something I would make again, but I'll probably make something similar to it next time. Maybe substitute black beans for black eyed peas, add some sautéed veggies... oooo...possibly eggplant? I could see this going a whole other direction with curry powder...
Till next time!


Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Snack Time

So this posting is a little late but oh well, I wanted to share with you another Snack Time.

I wanted to make something different for the boys and thought I might class it up by making something nice. Naturally I think bacon...boys like bacon. Fact ;)
Then I remembered something Austin and I ate at Café Sevilla in Downtown San Diego when we lived there. A cute Spanish Tapas restaurant with Flamenco dancers during dinner and salsa dancing and reggaeton in the basement after 8pm. We ate there a few times and I fell in love with their Bacon Wrapped Dates stuffed with blue cheese cooked in apple cider vinegar. And that's exactly what I made them :)

I know they kinda look like cockroaches wrapped in bacon but hey, they tasted great. I really need to get a better camera...

And you can't make the Bacon wrapped Dates without having Sangria~ So I made a simple sangria with cut-up apples, oranges, and lemons with a few bottles of Pinot Noir. I put out some wine glasses and we had a nice ol' time taking a little break and playing some fooseball.

A successful snack time once again :)
Till next time!


Monday, July 18, 2011

Vegetarian Dinner

Stepping back and looking what I eat every week, I noticed that Austin and I eat some kind of meat at least 5 days a week. That's a lot of meat. And it's not like we need to eat that much meat. I feel like we eat it because it's filling tastes good.

So we decided to start off with making Mondays "Veggie Day". Slowly we will incorporate more vegetarian meals into our diet so that we might have meat 2 days a week. Not only does it save money, (I spent $40 on 2 lbs of organic free-range ground turkey!) but it's also better for the environment. That does not mean however that this will turn into a vegetarian blog...I plan on making pineapple pulled pork next week...It's just going to be a healthier blog :) Come on, be happy for me~ The fat kid in me is having a hard time with this.

It's gonna be tough because it's been a part of our diets for so long. But I think it will be a healthy thing to do for a while. As tough as it is going to be, tonight's vegetarian meal was SO good :)

I made a simple Israeli Couscous Salad filled with colorful veggies from my garden and the farmer's market. I insist you try it because it's quick and easy and you can save the leftovers for lunch!

Israeli Couscous Salad
Israeli couscous
Vegetable Stock
Carrot (diced)
Red onion (diced)
Beets (diced)
Beet leaves (diced)
Rainbow Chard (thinly chopped)
Garlic (minced)
Avocado (diced)
Cucumber (diced)
Snap Peas (diced)
Mint (minced)
Apple Cider Vinegar (2 tsp.)

1. Cook the Israeli couscous in Vegetable stock as directed and set aside.
2. Sauté garlic and carrots until slightly soft, then add beet leaves and red onion. Sauté until beet leaves are wilted. Set aside to cool.
3. Throw all other veggies into a large bowl with mint, mix lightly. Add Couscous and sautéed vegetables.
4. Add salt, pepper, and vinegar to taste.

Enjoy guys!!


Carmageddon Party

What a crazy weekend eh? Everyone was freaking out about the 405 closure and didn't want to get stuck in traffic...wait...what traffic. It was like heaven, there were only a handful of cars on the road and the 405 had never been more empty.

Christina and I stuck to the westside and went hiking with Loren, Jina, and Devon up to Westridge. The trail was full of hills and and the view was amazing. We got a great work out and came back caked in dirt. Christina and I rode our bikes down to the beach to take a cool dip in the ocean. We hit reset, caught a few waves, and took a nap on the beach.

What could make a day like that better? Well, nothing except for having friends over for a BBQ, which is exactly what we did :)

I apologize now for not taking more pictures. I have a slight dilemma and that is that I don't have an actual camera. I use my cellphone to take pictures. Once I have a camera, I promise you the pictures will be worth looking at.

Austin and Christina made this awesome decoration for our party, very creative.

I made appetizers which included Teriyaki Tofu Summer Rolls with a Spicy Peanut Sauce and Christina made an amazing avocado and tomato salad that was to die for. Ari made a special homemade Mac n Cheese recipe that his mom used and it was gone before I got thirds :)

We ended the night with a drunken game of Connect Four and more of Austin's awesome craft (crack) cocktails.
What a wonderful Saturday.


Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Snack Time

Today's snack time was Mini Sliders with organic beef, tomatoes, red onions, lettuce, cheese, mustard and ketchup. BAM!

Christina is coming this weekend and I am very excited. We both love good food and good times~

Monday, July 11, 2011

Salmon Chimichurri and Baby Zucchinis

Today's dinner was great~
Super excited that it tasted as good as I thought it would be!
I made a brown rice, black beans, corn with lemon juice stir-fry to accompany my pan seared salmon.
The chimichurri gave the salmon a nice fresh herby taste and the lemon in the rice made it a light and refreshing meal for a hot day. I may have slightly over cooked the zucchini :p But oh well. It was still delicious.
I paired our meal with a light beer and I couldn't be happier.

Austin made me a turkey burger to take to work tomorrow. I'm gonna grab some fresh arugula from the garden, dice up some avocado, tomatoes, add homemade pickled red onions and make a nice salad. I can't wait~


Thursday, July 7, 2011

Up Da Butt Chicken

Tonight we had our friend Kwesi over for dinner. Both of the boys spent all day working hard on their projects.

Tonight's dinner was Oven-roasted Up-da-butt chicken.
I would love to do this on a grill but ours doesn't fit a whole chicken standing upright.
I set the wire rack on the very bottom, covered a pyrex pan with foil and sat the chicken on a half can of beer with garlic inside. I smeared the chicken with a butter rub and popped it in the oven for 45 minutes.
Sooo good.

We ate the chicken with a side of wild rice and arugula~

I am studying for my CSET that's coming up this weekend. It's a 5 hour test and I hope to god I pass. I won't be concocting anything special until Sunday because like a good girl; I will be studying :)

Till then,

Monday, July 4, 2011

Happy 3rd of July!!!

We had an awesome BBQ party on Sunday the 3rd and showcased some awesome food from the talented Chef Loren, Chef Christina, Chef Uncle -D, Chef K, and craft cocktail extraordinaire Austin.
Loren made an amazing citrus quinoa with feta cheese that was light and refreshing and chocolate chip zucchini bread that was like crack. So perfectly moist that the chocolate chips wanted to stay melted. I had at least a quarter of the cake.
Chef Christina brought a fresh fruit salad with a perfect balance of summer fruits to keep you energized through the day.

 Chef Uncle-D made burgers from scratch and were beautifully grilled and complemented with caramelized onion and mushrooms. He also made a fresh crushed watermelon vodka drink that was very popular with the ladies :)

 Chef K (that's me :) ...) made a white sangria infused with strawberries, blueberries, and pineapple cut into shapes of stars, an english pea with spinach and pesto pasta salad, and dijon fingerling potatoes with chili peppers and sriacha. And Flag Cake!

Craft cocktails that went like hotcakes throughout the day and far into the night were carefully crafted by Austin. Some of the concoctions he created were a Moscow Mule, Jalapeño Colonel, Darkest storms, Mojito, Gold Rush, Kentucky Colonel, and Cucumber Day Spas. All of his ingredients were freshly muddled and garnished with mint or candied ginger. I am a lucky girl!!! Spoiled actually~

Many others brought delicious food and filled our table with chips, dip and booze. Thanks guys!!

But what made the BBQ a success was the amazing people that came. We are very lucky to be surrounded by the coolest people who all get along with each other. Thank you everyone that came to the BBQ!!! I heard some interesting conversations and even saw some numbers being exchanged.
So instead of showcasing food today on my blog, I wanted to show some of the faces that made yesterday what it was :)

I'm going to throw yesterday's BBQ into the success pile of my life. It was splendid.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Dinner with Danny and Austin

After a very long debate on whether or not we wanted to go out to dinner, I decided to make dinner with whatever we had left in the fridge. We're getting to the nitty-gritty now... leftovers are now becoming a challenge. It's like the t.v. show Chopped, four ingredients and make something spectacular.

Well, with what I found in the fridge, this is what I decided to create.

1st course: Yesterday's homemade pasta (now ramen) and a simple soup stock with green onions
*This was a hit with Danny, he loved the simplicity of the soup and the texture of the noodles. "I think this is the best ramen I've ever had, this might be better than ramen."

2nd course: Jalapeño Pepper stuffed with goat cheese and pan seared ham.
*Another hit but had Austin running around the kitchen scouring for bread and water. This antic continued for several minutes until I fed him a bellpepper stuffed with goat cheese. He was fine after that :)
*Sorry I only got the prep pic.

Main course: Trader Joe's Chicken Gyoza over a bed of arugula from the garden with a rice vinegar, soy sauce and hot chili oil. With a side of veggie and ham fried brown rice.
*Let's just say there are no leftovers.

Tomorrow we're having a Happy 3rd of July BBQ and Beach party. If I'm not wasted, I'll take pictures :)