비빔면: Spicy Noodles

It is summer and that means lots of dishes with the classic noodle of 냉면. I prefer the cold noodle soup but since I was hungry I ended up making these spicy noodles instead. This was from a series called Two Chefs airing on the Arirang channel. (But I am watching them on youtube). It was a tasty recipe, but I think I need to figure out how they do things like “Onion juice”, or “Pear juice”. When I put mine in a blender it just made it pulpy where they have just liquid. I think it would make the sauce a lot smoother and probably taste even better. It is nice to say that I tried my own sauce but perhaps it would be just easier to buy the premade stuff. I also thought it was interesting they had me use the hot pepper powder and not the paste. It seems it would be easier to modify initially using the paste, but what do I know. Definitely do not forget to include the radish, Asian pear, and cucumber! It really gives the dish a nice balance of crunch and flavors. This dish is still one of my favorites to eat and it is a definite must-consume whenever you see it on a menu!
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Late Night Panzanella

It had been a long day and I was so hungry that I almost opted just to get a burger or something. But I restrained myself and tried to think of how to use what I already had at home. Oh and it was past 10pm at night. I used Mark Bittman’s How to Cook Everything to remind myself of panzanella salad because I had tomatoes, stale french bread, and a bit of red onion. The recipe also called for fresh herbs, but I quickly threw out my basil because it had turned all slimy. (ick). The salad was delicious though and it made me feel good to use food and not have to throw it away because it had gone bad (bread is pretty rock hard). The recipe calls for a lot of tomato and bread, but I cut things up into a serving for one. Easy and done. I am not liking the lingering onion taste even after I brushed my teeth. I am thinking next time it would be better to soak the onions just to get out over-sharpness of the onion flavor.
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Ham and Cheese Pinwheels

Need a quick appetizer for a party? Or perhaps some quick bites for lunch? These were so simple and easy that the author had it right to say there is no “recipe” you just sort of put it together. I have been following the blog Lunchbox Blues for the past year or so because the author is great about how to make lunches that aren’t your typical sandwich PB&J (not that there is anything wrong with that, but there are only so many you can eat). I even got his cookbook Beating the Lunchbox Blues  which was more of a picture book showing options you could do for lunch. I have tried several things and these pinwheels were one of them. Just have a sheet of puff pastry, put on some sandwich meat, and cheese. Roll up, bake, consume. How could anything in puff pastry be anything but delicious?

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북어국: Pollack Soup

There is always something comforting about Korean soup. If I had the time and resources I would have a soup everyday even in the hot weather months. I love watching Korean cooking shows despite the fact that my Korean is not exactly a native speaker level. There is one that is called 최고의 요리 비결 roughly translated to “best recipes”. A lot of recipes on there look really good but when I try to execute them it is not always successful. I was really happy to find out though that the one for Pollack Soup was so easy and definitely a keeper. The flavors are great and surprisingly this is so easy (and cheap!) to make. This is definitely one to try out and one that I have already made several times.
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Roasted Brussel Sprout Salad with Maple Vinagrette

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After eating lots of things that were terrible for my body this week I just craved something a bit healthier for my body. Salad is good. Roasted veggies is good. Cue tangy/sweet dressing and Im there for sure. I saw these 2 recipes off of Big Girls Small Kitchen for Roasted Brussel Sprout Salad and this other salad of Alta Brussel Sprout Salad. I combined the 2 throwing in a shallot, Israeli couscous, and apple and using the Maple Vinagrette. It was awesome and totally hit the spot. This combo of salads is definitely one Id do again.

Homemade Maple Granola

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I love granola. There is only so much bread you can eat every morning before you say ok I need something with a different texture. I used to buy just a box and find I’d go through it in a week. It had been a long time since I’ve made homemade granola, but now I think I will get back into it. It is so much cheaper to make at home and it is so easy. I got this recipe from Jessica Fisher’s Not Your Mother’s Freezer Recipes cookbook and she even mentioned getting the spin off from Ellie Krieger (one of my favorite recipe people!) Literally put all your ingredients together (except dried fruit which you add at the end) mix with maple syrup, then bake. I added some orange zest to the mix as well. The variations are endless, but I was happy with my mix of nuts, sunflower seeds, and cranberries. Add in generous dollops of vanilla yogurt and it is a tasty meal!  A definite must-try for the mornings!

Chicken Enchilada

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Have you ever opened your fridge and seen food there and thought “I have nothing to eat”? Yes this was one of those moments. I thought how convenient it would be to just go get a burger somewhere, or something equally bad for me. Being tired and stressed makes me so lazy in the kitchen and I also develop a set of “cravings” that I have no idea how to get rid of. Well after looking in this cookbook for ideas I realized that I had all the makings for some chicken enchiladas. I just had no desire to make a ton so I made a couple individual servings and have some extra fillings for a few more servings. So I had some cooked chicken, some red onion, cream cheese mixed together with some taco seasoning. Wrap in some tortillas and I had some leftover fantastic spicy queso (no this is not “cheese sauce”!) poured on top. Here was the awesome part~ using the toaster oven! No need to heat up my large oven when I only rolled 2 enchiladas. Baked in there for 17min at 350 and it was perfect. Add some salsa on the side~ voila dinner. Sorry, this photo doesn’t do the dish justice, but when you are hungry this will have to do. 🙂