April 23, 2009

Stinky Heart Crackers

Salty blue cheese crackers!  
These were so smelly when they're in the oven baking!!  Maybe I'll try another version- with Stilton and walnuts next time.  This time, it's just blue cheese, garlic powder, and black pepper.

April 17, 2009

Chickpea and Black Beans Wrap

 Homemade chickpea patties, black beans, rice, and hummus wrap.  This was suprisingly very good, especially with a bit of hot sauce and pickled jalapenos.
Pan-fried chickpeaa patties, with garam masala, garlic, onions, cumin, and lots of parsley!

Coconut Ginger Tofu Pudding

I know that tofu pudding can never replace the real creaminess of regular pudding, so think of this as a lighter, more tropical dessert that you can eat 2 or 3 bowls of in one sitting (without much guilt). 

This dessert is really simple:
1.  Buy unsweetened tofu pudding.  It'll actually say 'tofu pudding' on the container, NOT soft tofu.
2.  Bring a can of coconut milk to a boil and simmer for about 5 minutes, and then let it cool down.  Store in a container until ready to use.
3.  Julienne about 3/4 cups of ginger.  In a small pot, over medium-low heat, melt about 7 oz of rock sugar with 1  1/2 cups of water.  Add ginger to the sugar syrup and continue to  simmer until the syrup is reduced down and thickens up to a consistency of honey or maple syrup.  Let the syrup cool down and then transfer to a lidded container too.  

Now you're all set to have tofu pudding at anytime!  Store the ginger-infused syrup, coconut milk, and tofu in the fridge.

When ready to eat, take 1-2 TBS of the ginger syrup,  2-3 TBS of coconut milk, and scoop out about 1 cup of tofu pudding.  Try to mix the 3 of them together and careful not to break up the tofu pudding too much.  Adjust the sugar and coconut milk to your liking.  If you like to eat the pudding warm, then reheat it in the microwave for a bit, but not too much, or it'll melt into a puddle of sweetened soy water.  

I personally like to eat this cold on a hot afternoon, with lots of ginger from the syrup and light on the coconut milk (maybe just 1 tablespoon for the coconut essence).  Now that you know the recipe/technique, anybody wanna make it for me?? :D  :D  :D

April 15, 2009

Eight Treasure Congee

Did you know that congee can be made with other grains, other than rice?  Like millet, barley, and sorghum.  These types of congee are common in the north of China.  Here, I've made an 'eight treasure congee.'  The eight treasure really just means 8 ingredients that you will put in the congee (excluding water), and those are any 8 ingredients that you have on hand.  

For my eight treasure congee, I put in red kidney beans, glutinous rice, raw peanuts, lotus seeds, barley, red jujubes, dried logans, and grated ginger.  This is a sweet congee instead of a savory one, so I seasoned it with rock sugar (or jaggery).  I guess that'll make this a Nine Treasure Congee and not eight?  I can't count!  This is sort of like a mixed up Vietnamese sweet dessert soup. :)

April 9, 2009

When you have left over noodles...

... those noodles will appear in  different forms for days and days after.  Noodle stir fry with meat, with veggies, noodle soup, noodle with fried eggs, fried noodle patties (my creation), etc.

All thanks to SOMEONE (whose eyes are bigger than her stomach), who decided to boil SIX packages of noodles for 5 people.  We barely ate half the amount.

So this is the first reincarnation of those noodles- a veggie stir fry with homemade fried tofu.  If you can fry tofu at home, it is definitely MUCH better than those in the supermarket.

Pongal with Spicy Cashews

Pongal- saffron, cracked pepper, peppercorns, moong dal (mung beans), and basmati rice cooked together in lots of water (like congee).

Toppings:  Spicy cashews and fried shallots.  

April 8, 2009

Happy Happy Cake!

Happy Birthday Happy Birthday!  Someone got a Hana-made cake recently!

However, too bad this time, my whipped cream melted after being refrigerated for a few hours.  I still don't understand why.  That's why the frosting is bad looking. :(    Oh well, it looks like a pillowy cloud of cakey goodness!

Cake: scented with the zest of an orange.
Filling: strawberries, whipped cream, and shaved chocolate.

What I did differently this time:  This is a 3-layer cake!  The cake to filling ratio is much better; and hence, yummier!  Really!  :D  Also, the chocolate icing is mixed with coconut milk instead of regular milk or cream.  I tasted the icing, and just wanted to drizzle that all over an ice cream sundae.  

Maybe my next cake will be a coconut cake with chocolate coconut icing.  Mmm... I'm gonna dream of that tonight.