Monday, February 13, 2017

Japchae

This takes a while as everything is individually prepared and cooked, but it's worth it.

3.5 oz. rib eye fillet
3.5 oz. shiitake mushrooms, thinly sliced
water, for boiling
3.9 oz. baby spinach, rinsed
8.8 oz. Korean sweet potato noodles
Prepping
1 egg, egg white and yolk separated
Cooking oil
1/2 large yellow onion, sliced thinly
pinch of salt
4.2 oz. carrots, peeled and julienned
1/4 of a red bell pepper, deveined and julienned

Beef Marinade:
1 Tbsp. soy sauce
1 tsp. rice wine (mirin)
1/2 tsp. garlic, minced
1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
1 tsp. sesame oil

Noodles & Mushroom Marinade:
4 Tbsp. soy sauce
1 Tbsp. honey
1 Tbsp. brown sugar
Spinach
1 Tbsp. sesame oil
1/8 tsp. ground black pepper

Spinach Seasoning:
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. garlic, minced
1 tsp. sesame oil

Finishing Touch:
1 Tbsp. sesame seeds
1 Tbsp. sesame oil

Prepare the rib eye and beef marinade: Remove the blood from the rib eye with a paper towel. Thinly slice the beef. Put the beef in a bowl. Add all the ingredients for the beef marinade. Stir gently to coat the beef. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap. Set aside.

Prepare the noodles & mushroom marinade: In a small bowl, combine all the ingredients.

Egg cooked and sliced
Put the sliced mushrooms in a medium bowl. Add 1 Tbsp. of the noodles and mushroom marinade. Stir well. Set aside.

In a medium pot, boil some water. Once it starts to boil, add the spinach for about 10 seconds, then scoop it out with a strainer (or drain the water out). Run cold water over the spinach to cool it down. Squeeze the spinach to remove excess water. It will just be a little ball of spinach. Put it into a small mixing bowl and add the spinach seasoning ingredients. Mix lightly, then remove everything to a large mixing bowl. Set aside.

Boil more water in a large pot.When the water starts to boil, add the noodles, and boil for 7 minutes. Drain the water, then rinse the noodles in cold water for 1-2 minutes. Cut the noodles with kitchen shears; the length should be about 6-8 inches. Put the noodles in a mixing bowl, and add the remainder of the noodles and mushroom marinade. Set aside.

Veg
Beat the egg white in a small bowl. Add a bit of cooking oil. Spread it well. Add the egg white to a large skillet, cook both sides on low heat. Remove to a clean cutting board.

Beat the yolk, add in a bit of cooking oil. Spread it well. Pour into the skillet, cook both sides on low heat. Remove to a clean cutting board.

Add some cooking oil to the skillet. Add in the onion and a pinch of salt. Cook over medium heat 2-3 minutes. Remove to the large mixing bowl the spinach is in.

Veg and Beef
In the same skillet, add in the carrots, a bit of oil, and a pinch of salt. Cook over medium heat 1-2 minutes. Remove to the large mixing bowl.

Over medium heat, cook the bell pepper, a bit of oil, and a pinch of salt for about 2 minutes. Remove to the large mixing bowl.

In the same skillet, add some cooking oil, the mushrooms with the marinade, and stir fry until cooked. About 2-3 minutes. Remove to the large mixing bowl.

Add some cooking oil, pour in the meat and marinade. Stir fry until cooked. About 2-3 minutes. Remove to the large mixing bowl.

In the same skillet, add some cooking oil and the marinated noodles. Stir fry until cooked, about 3 minutes. Remove to the large mixing bowl.

Dinner is ready!
Thinly slice the egg white and egg yolk like match sticks. Add them to the mixing bowl.

Add the finishing touch ingredients to the mixing bowl. Mix everything with large tongs or your hands, but be careful as some things could still be hot.

Serve and enjoy.

Here's a link to the recipe I used. It also includes a video, which I found extremely helpful: https://mykoreankitchen.com/korean-glass-noodle-stir-fry-japchae/.


Saturday, February 4, 2017

Lemon Curd Cookies

2 1/4 c. flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. cream of tartar
1/2 c. butter, softened
1/2 c. sugar
1/2 c. confectioners sugar, plus extra for decorating
1/2 c. canola oil
1 egg
1/2 tsp. lemon extract
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
3/4 c. lemon curd, store bought or homemade

Preheat oven to 350 F.

In a small bowl, combine the flour, salt, baking soda, and cream of tartar. Set aside.

In a large bowl, cream butter and sugars until light and fluffy.

Beat in the oil, egg, and extracts.

Add flour mixture to creamed mixture. Stir until combined.

Drop one tablespoon of dough (I used a tartlet scoop) on a greased baking sheet (or two). Bake for 8 minutes.

Remove from the oven and, using the end of a wooden spoon handle, make an indentation in the center of each cookie. Fill with about a teaspoon of lemon curd. Return to the oven and bake for an additional 4-5 minutes, or until cookies are firm and lightly browning on the sides.

Remove to wire racks to cool.

Sprinkle with powdered sugar if you want.

Here's a link to the recipe I used: http://www.barbarabakes.com/lemon-bar-cookie-cups/

Apple Raisin Quinoa Breakfast Bake

Plan ahead... needs to chill overnight...
 
1 c. uncooked quinoa
1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1/8 tsp. ground cloves
2 apples, peeled and diced
1/3 c. raisins
2 eggs
2 c. milk

1 tsp. vanilla
1/4 c. maple syrup
1/3 c. almonds, chopped

Preheat the oven to 350 F.

Lightly grease an 8x8 inch baking dish. Set aside.

In a small bowl, mix the quinoa and the spices. Pour into greased dish.

Sprinkle the apple and raisins on top of the quinoa.

In a small bowl, beat the eggs. Whisk in the milk and syrup.

Pour the egg mixture over the top of the fruit and quinoa. Lightly stir to make sure the fruit is partially submerged.

Sprinkle the almonds on top.

Bake for 55 minutes or until the casserole is mostly set with only a small amount of liquid left.

Allow to cool, then cover and refrigerate. In the morning, cut a slice, microwave, and enjoy!

Here's a link to the recipe I used: http://www.popsugar.com/fitness/Apple-Cinnamon-Quinoa-Breakfast-Bake-32210316

Poop Emoji Meringues

2 Tbsp. meringue powder
pinch of salt
1/4 c. water
2/3 c. sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla
2 drops brown food coloring (optional)
1/4 c. unsweetened cocoa powder
candy eyeballs
white frosting (I used canned)

Take either a #2A pastry tip or bottle cap (I used a lid from my bottle of Baileys), and on a sheet of parchment paper that is cut to fit whatever baking sheet you are using, draw circles using the tip or cap all over the paper. Leave about 1/2 an inch or so between the circles. The meringues don't expand much during baking, but they should have a bit of room. Then place the parchment paper pen or pencil side down on the baking sheet. Set aside.

Preheat oven to 200 F.

In a large metal or glass bowl (not plastic), mix together the meringue powder, salt, and water until foamy.

While you're still mixing, slowly add in the vanilla. Then slowly add in the sugar. Beat on high speed until stiff peaks form.

Add the drops of food coloring (if you want it), then add in the cocoa powder. Mix together on the slowest speed until mixed completely.

Using a pastry bag, add the #12 pastry tip. A helpful way to fill the bag is after the tip is ready, put the bag in a tall glass and fold over the top of the bag. Fill the bag with the meringue mixture. Tie off the top of the bag. Pipe right away as meringues are sensitive to heat.

Using the prepared baking sheet, put a tiny dot of meringue mixture on the bottom corners of the parchment paper to hold it down to the baking sheet while you're piping.

Starting in the middle of each circle, pipe to the outside edge, go around the circle once, then go up a layer, then one more layer before letting go. Continue until you've made poops on all the drawn circles.

Put the meringues in the oven and bake for 1 hour. At the end of the hour, turn the oven off, but leave the meringues in the oven another 30 minutes. Let the meringues come to room temperature before decorating.

They may crackle a little after you've taken them out of the oven.

To prepare the faces for the poops, you will need a #1 tip in a pastry bag filled with frosting, and you will need to separate out eyeballs for each poop. If you don't care if the pupils are similar in size, then you can skip the sorting.

I tried being efficient, so I took 4 poops, drew the smiles on like the emoji, then made two dots of frosting above the smile. Then I took the eyeballs and secured them to the dots of frosting on each poop. And this process continued for quite a while until the poops were all done.

Store in an airtight container.

These meringues take quite a while from start to finish, but it was so fun. We loved eating the poops!

Here's a link to the video recipe I used: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F0iv1YFaoxQ.

Saturday, December 24, 2016

Almond Joy Cookies

14 oz. sweetened coconut flakes
2 c. semi-sweet chocolate chips
2/3 c. almonds, chopped
1/4 tsp. salt
14 oz. sweetened condensed milk

Preheat oven to 325 F.

Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.

In a large bowl, combine all the ingredients. Stir until well mixed.

Using a cookie scoop, scoop out dough onto prepared baking sheet.

Bake 12-14 minutes or until the tips of the coconut are just starting to turn golden.

Let cool on the baking sheet about 5 minutes before removing to a cooling rack.

Here's a link to the recipe I used: http://www.momontimeout.com/2016/07/almond-joy-cookies-just-4-ingredients/

Strawberry Jam Filled Cookie Bars

For the Filling:
2 1/2 c. strawberries, fresh or frozen
1/4 c. water
1/2 c. sugar

3 Tbsp corn starch + 1/4 c. cold water

For the Cookie Dough:
1/2 c. butter
1/2 c. brown sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 egg
1 3/4 c. + 2 Tbsp flour
1/2 tsp. baking powder

To make the filling: The filling will need to cool down before being used, so make sure you make the filling first.

In a small pot, add the strawberries, water, and sugar. Bring to a simmer, then simmer for 10-15 minutes.You will need to stir regularly and break up the strawberries with a spoon as they cook.

Dissolve the corn starch in the cold water. Add slowly to the boiling strawberry mixture. Stir constantly. Cook for another few minutes until the mixture thickens and becomes the consistency of pie filling. Make sure you're stirring constantly.

Remove from heat and transfer to a glass bowl to cool. Cool for at least 30 minutes, stirring it every now and then before using it in the cookie bars.

To make the cookie dough: Preheat the oven to 350 F.

Cream the butter and sugar together.

Beat in the egg and vanilla.

In a small bowl, mix together the flour and baking powder, then fold into the creamed mixture until a dough forms.

Divide the dough into two equal parts.

Line an 8x8 inch baking pan with plastic wrap and press one half of the dough evenly into the bottom of the lined pan. Lift the flattened dough out of the pan, still keeping it on the plastic wrap, and chill in the fridge until you are ready to use it.

Lightly grease the baking pan and line it with parchment paper.

Press the other half of the dough evenly into the bottom of the prepared pan.

Spread the strawberry filling evenly over the base layer.

Take the dough square from the fridge and peel back part of the plastic wrap so you can flip it onto the filling. Then peel the rest of the plastic wrap off. Press down lightly on the dough.

Bake for 25-35 minutes, until lightly golden on top.

Cool completely before cutting into bars.

Here's a link to the recipe I used: http://www.rockrecipes.com/raspberry-filled-cookie-bars/


Large Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

These are definitely my new favorite cookies.

Plan ahead... needs to chill...

2 1/2 c. flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 c. unsalted butter, softened
1 c. granulated sugar
3/4 c. brown sugar, packed
2 eggs, room temperature
2 c. creamy peanut butter
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 1/2 c. semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/2 c. granulated sugar, for rolling

In a medium sized bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together. Set aside.

In a large bowl, cream the butter and both sugars together until smooth.

Add in the eggs and beat until combined.

Mix in the peanut butter and vanilla.

Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients. Mix until just combined.

Add in the chocolate chips.

Chill the dough for 1 hour in the refrigerator. If you chill the dough longer than an hour or so, allow it to sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes before trying to roll into balls.

Preheat oven to 350 F.

Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper. Set aside.

Roll cookie dough into large balls, about 3 Tablespoons of dough per cookie (it's a lot, but they are large cookies!), then roll the dough in the granulated sugar.

Place 8 balls onto the cookie sheets. Gently press down on each ball to slightly flatten.

Bake for 15 minutes until lightly browned on the sides. The centers will still look very soft.

Let cookies cool on the baking sheet for at least 5 minutes before transferring them to a cooling rack.

If you're waiting between making batches, make sure you put the dough back in the fridge or it gets to sticky and is hard to roll.

These cookies are amazing and I will definitely be making them again. Soon.

Here's a link to the recipe I used: http://www.sallysbakingaddiction.com/2016/07/08/big-bakery-style-peanut-butter-chunk-cookies/. I love Sally! Haven't gone wrong with any of her recipes yet!

Friday, December 23, 2016

Southwest Salad with Garlic Lime Dressing

For the Salad:
8 c. lettuce, any kind really
1 c. cheddar cheese, grated
1 avocado, sliced
1 can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
1 c. frozen corn, cooked according to package directions
2 c. chicken, diced and cooked
1 tsp. cumin
1/2 tsp. chili powder
2 c. nacho cheese Doritos, crushed

For the Dressing: 
3 Tbsp. honey
3 Tbsp. lime juice
1 clove garlic, grated
1/4 tsp. cumin
salt and pepper, to taste
1/4 c. canola oil

To make the salad: Divide lettuce among 4 bowls. Arrange cheese, avocado, beans, corn, and chicken around each bowl. Top with crushed Doritos.

To make the dressing: Combine all ingredients together. Whisk to emulsify. Drizzle over salads. Serve.

Here's a link to the recipe I used: http://www.laurenslatest.com/my-favorite-southwest-salad-with-garlic-lime-dressing-doritos/

Oreo M&M Cookie Bars

1 stick butter, melted
1 egg
1 c. brown sugar, packed
1 Tbsp. vanilla extract
1 c. flour
18 Oreo cookies, roughly chopped
1/2 c. M&M's
sprinkles (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 F.

Line an 8x8 inch baking dish with aluminum foil, then spray with cooking spray. Set aside.

In a large bowl, add the melted butter (slightly cooled), egg, brown sugar, and vanilla. Whisk until smooth.

Add in the flour, and stir until just combined.

Stir in the Oreos.

Stir in the M&M's and any sprinkles if you want them.

Turn the batter out into the prepared dish, smoothing it out lightly.

Place a few Oreos or M&M's or sprinkles (or all of them) on the top to be aesthetically pleasing.

Bake for 18-21 minutes, or until the top is set in the center. The bars will firm up as they cool. Place pan on a wire rack to cool for at least 90 minutes before slicing and serving. The filling in the Oreos has to re-solidify after melting, so this is why it takes 90 minutes before you can cut and serve.

Here's a link to the recipe I used: http://www.averiecooks.com/2015/11/loaded-mm-oreo-cookie-holiday-bars.html

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Irish Beef Stew with Mashed Potatoes

3 Tbsp. olive oil, divided
1 lb. beef chunks
1/2 c.carrots, chopped
salt and pepper, to taste
garlic powder, to taste
thyme, to taste
basil, to taste
rosemary, to taste
coriander, to taste
2 c. beef broth
1/2 onion, diced
5 sprigs cilantro, chopped
2 Tbsp. butter, softened, almost completely melted
2 Tbsp. flour
1/3 c. frozen peas
hot mashed potatoes (I make mine mixed with butter, sour cream, milk, salt, and pepper)

In a skillet, brown the beef in 2 Tbsp. olive oil until browned on all sides, about 4-5 minutes.

Remove the beef and put it in a crock pot. Add in the carrots, spices (I was lighter on the rosemary and basil than all the other spices), and beef broth. Cook on low for 3-4 hours.

After 3-4 hours, cook the onion in a deep pot with 1 Tbsp. olive oil. Cook about 5 minutes, add the cilantro, and cook another minute or two.

In a small bowl, combine the butter and flour. Stir until smooth and mixed together.

Transfer the stew from the crock pot to the deep pot with the onion and cilantro. Turn up the heat to high. Stir the butter mixture into the stew. Add in the peas. Let the stew come to a boil, and let it boil 2-3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Let the stew get thick before reducing the heat. Serve over hot mashed potatoes.

I'll be making this again.

Here's a link to the recipe I slightly adapted: http://www.laurenslatest.com/irish-beef-stew-mashed-potatoes/