Friday, February 22, 2013

What little time I have

I've been super busy with life...literally. I don't even have time for my family and friends any more. Unfortunately, I will be moving out of Hawaii. But, fear not, my next location will be another great journey in life. The good news is that I'm done with my classes for now, but the bad news is that I have lots and lots of packing to do. However, I found what little time I had to cook and feed my stomach. This is over the course of a few months. written recipes to post. Enjoy!!

Left: My favorite kind of eggroll....healthier kind. Cabbage rolls! Same process and method as regular eggrolls except rolled in cabbabe leaves and steamed. Smothered in my spicy red hot Thai chili sauce. Delicioius!!

Right: When my mom visited, we made two trays full of cabbage rolls for my husband. He loves cabbage rolls..more than me! He especially loves it with a peanut sauce. My mom's home-made cabbage rolls are delicioius...plain, but brings back childhood memories. I miss my mom!
Left: Some friends of mine were having a picnic at the beach. My friend Debbie is pregnant and she wanted to try my caprese bagel sandwhich. I made it for her and, luckily I did because we didn't have charcoal to start the grill. Well, I ran out of bagels, but still had the tomatoes, bacon, basil, and mozzarella cheese. So I turned it into a salad. My husban plated it nicely for me but it's drizzled with a little bit of olive-lemon salad dressing. Very delicious and lite...a new twist to the regular caprese appetizers.

Right: Valentine's day. Didn't give each other anything special....nothing special left to give since we have everything special already in our lives. He still got me roses and cards and balloons. We went out for a nice family dinner and then shopping for fun. It was a nice, relaxing Valentine's. I made strawberry cupcakes (boxed) with a home-made raspberry cream cheese and for decorations, I made hearts out of sugar. Nothing too special about this recipe, but I thought it looked nice.
Left: Here is steamed shark wrapped in banana leaf on a bed of carmalized vegies. Made for my father who had never had shark and shark meat was sold plenty at our grocery store. My husband also loves shark and so we bought plenty. I had a sauce to go with it, but it's not in this picture. It does not have a fishy taste. It has a clean fish taste and very easy on the tongue too. Delicious!! I will miss it!!

Right: Hmong steamed flounder with eggplant, tomatoes, and zucchini. The sauce is a soy sauce base. Nothing really unique about this recipe...just traditional Hmong style-ish. This was made for my parents when they visited. My dad loves fish and so my husband bought flounders to impress him hahaha. I'm not a fan at picking bones, but this was very delicious too. The tomaotes and cilantro really brought out the freshness of the fish.

 Left: Recognize the picture? My husband loved the steamed shark so much that he wanted me to make it again for him. Instead of steaming the shark this time, I pan fried it. I also added saffron rice to the dish just for color. This picture has the sauce with soy sauce as a base drizzled over it. It brought the right amount of salt content and flavor.
 Right: I made a double-layer white cake with mango curd for dessert when my parents came to visit. My mom doesn't really like cake that are too sweet so I chose a white cake, eliminating the egg yolks. I used the egg yolks to make the mango curd which was fruity and not as sweet. I made the frosting from scratch eliminating most of the sugar because it would've been too sweet for my mother. She loved it! She wished she could have all her cakes like this. It wasn't too sweet for her and tasted lighter than usual cakes. I'm glad it was a success!
 Left: Seared shark fillets on a bed of sauteed asparagus drizzled in a mango sauce. This sounds like a sweet dish because of the mango sauce, but it was actually a nice compliment to the asparagus and shark fillets. My husband loved this dish and I thought it was actually quite delicious with the sweet and savory sauce. I had left over mango puree so I thought a mango sauce would be new. Plus, I love the color on the plate. Beautiful!
Right: This is a dish you've all seen before...plenty in my blog. Pho! Hmong peope love Pho and home-made pho are the best!! Nothing new, but I was just craving for a bowl of hot and spicy noodle soup. I can never get enough Pho. I just recently made Pho a few days ago and mastered the rich broth...FINALLY!!! The key is the type of meat used in the broth...and I cannot give out my little secret.


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