Friday, August 27, 2010

August 2010 Meal #8: Shoyu Pork Replaced by Pork Adobo

Meal #8 was supposed to be Shoyu Pork but I decided to change it since I had started dinner a little late.  So this was replaced by the super easy and quick Pork Adobo.  I had mentioned before that my husband is usually the Pork Adobo cooker and he has his own "recipe" that he goes by.  I was in charge of cooking this particular night since he was at work still and I followed the Adobo recipe that I have posted.  I have only followed the recipe while cooking it with chicken so using pork would be a little experiment for me.

To my surprise it turned out really well and tasty that my two year old happily ate it.  So now I guess I don't have to rely on my husband to cook this for dinner anymore...awww SHUCKS ;-p.  Here's the link below to the recipe I previously posted.


August 2010 Meal #7: Baked Miso Salmon

Meal #7 which was Baked Miso Salmon would have turned out good if I had paid attention to the oven.  I don't have a picture of it since this didn't turn out so good.  The fish ended up being too dry since I nearly forgot I had it on broil for the last part of baking, but I'll still share the recipe and someone will have better luck with it. 

3 lbs. butterfish or salmon

1/3 cup miso
1/3 cup mirin (Japanese sweet rice wine)
2 tbsp sake
1/3 cup low-salt shoyu
1 1/2 tsp fresh lemon juice
1 1/2 - 2 inches piece ginger, coarsely grated
3 stalks green onion, finely chopped

Combine marinade ingredients.  Add fish and marinade overnight.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Scrape excess marinade from fish.  Bake 20-30 minutes til baked through, then broil to brown top.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

August 2010 Meal #6: Meat Jun

This particular meal is one of my favorites to eat everytime we go home to Hawaii to visit.  I have to make at least one or two stops to eat this make me happy as a clam.  Meal#6 is called Meat Jun which is a Korean dish consisting of thinly sliced beef marinated in a Korean sauce, battered, fried, and served with an accompanying sauce.  Since I haven't found a decent Korean restaurant in Oregon and have succumbed to having to make this myself.  I rarely make this unless I have a deep craving for it since it's a tedious process to cook....well at least to me it is. 

I used to cheat and use already sliced carne asada beef which is a little too thick for Meat Jun.  You're supposed to slice your own beef from a partially frozen roast but all these years I've been lazy to do so and cheated a little.  However, this time I sliced my beef the proper way and who would have thunk it that it made the meat jun even better. 

So here's my recipe for this very yummy dish along with the sauce and as a BONUS the shoyu/sesame bean sprouts that's usually a side dish provided at any Korean restaurant.

2-3 lbs top sirloin roast, partially frozen and sliced thinly
2 stalks green onion, chopped finely
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/1/4 cups shoyu
1/2 cup sugar
3 tbsp. sesame seed oil
2 dashes pepper
3 eggs, beaten
1 cup flour
oil for frying

Combine all ingredients except eggs, flour, and oil.  Marinate overnight.  Heat oil in pan.  Coat meat in flour and dip in egg. Fry on both sides til lightly brown.  Drain on paper towels and slice.

2 tbsp shoyu
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 tbsp sugar
1 tsp sesame seeds

Heat all ingredients in small saucepan until sugar dissolves.  Serve with Meat Jun.

3 cups bean sprouts
1/4 cup shoyu
2 tbsp. sesame seed oil
3 tbsp. sugar
water for boiling.

Par boil bean sprouts.  Drain and return to pot.  Add remaining ingredients and cook until sugar is dissolved.  You may add more sugar and shoyu to your taste.

Below is my homemade Meat Jun and I just had to have some Kim Chee with it too.

August 2010 Meal #5: Chinese Roast Chicken Replaced by Char Siu Chicken

I had meant to make Chinese Roast Chicken for Meal #5 but I didn't realize that I only had one package of the marinade.  Which is kind of weird since I usually buy more than one package and I haven't made that in a long while.  So as an alternative and it's a good thing that I had more than one package of marinade, I ended up making Char Siu Chicken instead.  I don't have a recipe from scratch since sometimes I think the simpler something is to make, the better for me.  I used the NOH brand Char Siu mix and all you have to pretty much do is supply the meat and just add water.  How much simpler could it get right?  This is how the package looks like and the recipe to go along with it.

1 pkg. NOH Chinese Barbecue Seasoning Mix (I normally use 2 pkgs.)

1/2 cup water
1 1/2 lbs. pork (pork butt, ribs, chicken, duck, turkey, etc.)

Combine contents of package with 1/2 cup water. Mix thoroughly. Cut 1 1/2 lbs. of pork into 2 inch by 2 inch by 4 inch pieces. Marinate in sauce for 2 to 4 hours or overnight for best results. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Place pork on a rack in a roasting pan and cook for 20 minutes. Turn meat and cook 20 minutes longer or until done. Baste occasionally with marinade.

OPTIONAL: Dry mix can be rubbed directly onto the meat without adding water.

I had the chicken grilled over our BBQ grill and it tastes better when grilled.  I thought that I had a picture of it but I don't so I apologize for not providing a sample.


Wednesday, August 18, 2010

My Apologies...

Been pretty busy lately with some craft projects that I have to get done and cooked a little off the August menu plan which I think is pretty much shot for the month.  Being that I neglected that menu and half the month is already passed I'll have to start fresh when September rolls around.  I'm still kind of on track with the menu plan though but I'm just really behind in posting anything.  I'll get to it once I'm done with this last major project which probably at the latest will be after this coming weekend. 

In addition to the food stuff I blog about, I'll have to start blogging about the many crafts that I like to make which I hope someday I get to turn into a part-time at home business for myself.  I have no set type of craft I specialize in, I just simply find things and like to try to create them myself.  So the "Crafty Creations" tab up on top will soon be filled with some of my old creations in addition to the recent ones I have made.  Still deciding if I'll make some tutorials about things I create since I'm terrible in taking pictures of the process, so we'll see. 

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

August 2010 Menu Plan

It's already the 10th of August and I haven't created or completed a menu plan for this month.  With a few blips from last month and with my husband being out of town during the first weekend of this month last months menu it a little all over the place.

July Meals #15-#18 I should have included as August's meals instead.  I have to transfer the unmade meals for this months meals with some minor changed and add a few new ones to it which I haven't even thought up yet.  Totally slacking on my part, got a few projects going on that I've been putting this off.  So for now here's the "completed" menu and I'll put a revision when I have the chance. 


  1. Easy Tuna Noodle Casserole
  2. Chili
  3. Sweet n Sour Pork Spareribs
  4. Baked Chicken w/ Cream of Mushroom Gravy
  5. Chinese Roast Chicken
  6. Meat Jun
  7. Baked Miso Salmon
  8. Shoyu Pork
  9. Chicken Alfredo w/Gnocchi
  10. Chop Chae
  11. Szechwan Ribs w/Mongolian Marinade
  12. Thai Coconut Shrimp
  13. Baked Chicken w/Gravy
  14. Beef Wellington
  15. Mushroom Risotto w/Italian Sausage
  16. Chicken Masala w/Rodi Chapati
  17. Baby Back BBQ Ribs

Monday, August 9, 2010

July 2010 Meal #15: Chicken, Mushrooms, & Zucchini REPLACED W/Baked Chicken w/Cream of Mushroom Gravy

I've been slacking off a bit on the menu especially since my husband went to Las Vegas over the weekend to coach for his semi-pro football team.  My much postponed Meal #15 of Chicken, Mushrooms, & Zucchini got replaced by Baked Chicken w/Cream of Mushroom Gravy.  This was a last minute decision since the veggies for the original meal had rotted and I had to think of an alternative.  So here came cream of mushroom soup and dry onion soup mix to the rescue!  Thanks goodness I have these staples in my pantry, which reminds me I used up the last of the onion soup mix.

So this is pretty much a spin off of Oven Baked Chicken and I just modified to have the cream of mushroom gravy instead of regular chicken gravy.  It turned out really good and will likely use this recipe again. Here's my last minute concoction for me to share.

3 lbs. boneless skinless chicken thighs
3 cans condensed cream of mushroom soup
1 pkg. Lipton Onion Soup mix
2 cups flour
1 tbsp.garlic salt
1 tsp. pepper
1 tsp. paprika
3 tbsp butter or margarine

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  While oven is heating up add butter/margarine into 13x9 baking pan and let butter melt to help coat pan.  Mix flour, garlic salt, pepper, and paprika.  Coat chicken evenly on both sides.  Layer chicken evenly into heated baking pan and bake chicken for 20 minutes.  Turn chicken over and bake another 20 minutes.  Mix soups and pour over chicken and bake another 20 minutes.

This was really good over a bed of hot rice.  My 2 year old liked it alot.

Friday, August 6, 2010

July 2010 Meal #18: Sweet n Sour Pork Spareribs

Meal #18 which was Sweet n Sour Pork Spareribs is really easy to make and one of my go to meals if I can't think of anything else to make.  I got it from one of my many local cookbooks from Hawaii and this is pretty tasty.  I tend to use canned pineapple chunks since I'm not to fond of pineapple and I can pick it out easily.  Me being born and raised in Hawaii I don't like pineapple, pretty funny huh? Haha!

I just don't like the stringiness of it as do the same with oranges or other fruit in the likes.  I like the flavor of these fruits I just won't eat the fruit itself....weird I know.  Anyway below is the yummy recipe for me to share.

5 lbs. pork spareribs

3 cloves crushed garlic
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup shoyu
2 tbsp. cornstarch
1 can (20 oz.)pineapple w/juice

Cut up pork and brown with garlic. Add brown sugar, vinegar, shoyu, and pineapple. Simmer on medium til done. Make cornstarch paste if you want gravy to be thicker (I usually don't).


Thursday, August 5, 2010

July 2010 Meal #17: Chili

For Meal #17 I chose to make Chili for dinner.  I actually have two types of chili that I make which is my lazy chili and one that I make from scratch.  The chili that I decided to make was my lazy chili that only takes about 15-20 minutes cooking time. 

I used a packaged chili seasoning and I prefer to use McCormick's Original Chili seasoning mix that looks like the picture below.  I will eventually decide to make my chili from scratch and don't worry I'll be sure to share the recipe.  For now here's my lazy version.

2 lbs. ground hamburger
1/2 onion, diced
2 tbsp garlic, minced
2 pkgs. McCormick's Chili seasoning
4 small cans tomato sauce
2 cans red kidney beans (I use only 1 can since my hubby prefers less means more meat)
2 pkgs. hot dogs, sliced
1 stick Portuguese sausages, diced

Brown hamburger with garlic.  Drain fat.  Add onions and cook till tender.  Add remaining ingredients and stir.  Let simmer about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. 

Here's a not so good picture of it since I was kind of lazy to get the better camera, so it was instead taken from my phone camera.

July 2010 Meal #16: Easy Tuna Noodle Casserole

I'm skipping over Meal #15: Chicken, Mushrooms, & Zucchini for now since it seems like we just had chicken a lil bit ago.  I'm hopping over to Meal #16: Easy Tuna Noodle Casserole since we've haven't had any type of fish/seafood for a while. 

My sister seen my menu list for July and wanted to try out this recipe first since I haven't made this particular dish yet.  It's a good thing that she did since she gave me a few suggestions on how to make it a little better.  So the recipe that I'm going to provide will be a revised version from the original that I found.  In the end this dish pretty much turned into a better version of Tuna Helper which I cooked all the time and was one of my lazy go to meals.

I'm trying to stay away from processed foods and cook meals more from scratch, so eliminating boxed dehydrated foods is my first step since I grew up learning how to cook those.  I've probably cooked every variety of Hamburger Helper, Tuna Helper, and Chicken Helper there is and I'm learning to break that habit.  Besides I like knowing what ingredients I'm putting into my child's meals and learning how to cook more meals from scratch.

The end result turned out well and it was better than Tuna Helper ;o)

16 oz. wide egg noodles, boiled
3 cans tuna, drained
3 cans cream of mushroom
2 cups milk
1 bag of frozen veggies (I used a bag of chopped broccoli)
Bread crumbs

Grease 13x9 baking pan and heat oven to 350 degrees.  Mix all ingredients except bread crumbs.  Pour mixture into baking pan and sprinkle bread crumbs on top if mixture.  Bake for 1 hour or til nicely browned.

Real simple to make and got the approval to make this again.  Enjoy!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

July 2010 Meal #14: Kalua Pig

Although we just had Kalua Pig a few weeks ago and I just made a post about it, I wanted to eat it again.  What can I say my hubby makes a mean Kalua Pig haha.  So I'm just going to provide the link to that post I made about a week ago rather than re-typing the same thing again. 


July 2010 Meal #13: Corned Beef Brisket

Meal #13 was Corned Beef Brisket which is something I haven't eaten in a while.  With it being summertime I wouldn't normally make this for dinner when we're supposed to have warmer weather.  Since our Great Northwest weather has been pretty funky lately I just decided to make corned beef brisket for dinner.

I used to boil the meat over the stove until it was tender which took at least over an hour and served it with just cabbage and mustard.  After meeting my husband he introduced me to the wonderful world of pressure cooking that takes half the time or even less.  The only idea I ever had about a pressure cooker was from watching the movie Radio Flyer when the two brothers decide to make a bad guy potion to rid of their mean step-father.  They had the stove set on high and the pressure cooker exploded making the concoction fly everywhere.  Needless to say I've never used one and was afraid of it exploding in my kitchen when we bought one.  So for a long while my husband was the one to manned the pressure cooker anytime we cooked something in it.  Only within the last few years I've become brave and learned to man it myself LOL. 

I just normally purchase the corned beef that already has the seasonings with it and add cabbage to the broth when it's done cooking.  I don't add the potatoes and carrots with it, I just prefer it cabbage and a generous amount of yellow mustard.

3-4 lbs. corned beef w/seasonings in the bag
1 small head cabbage
yellow mustard

Boil corned beef w/seasonings with water covering the beef until tender.  Adding more water as it recedes if meat isn't tender yet.  Let cool once cooked.  Slice beef and return to pot.  Chop up head cabbage and add to soup, re-heat soup and cook cabbage until tender.  Serve with yellow mustard.


July 2010 Meal #12: Chicken Papaya...Replaced By Chicken Stir Fry

Meal #12 was originally going to be Chicken Papaya but I couldn't find any green papaya at the time so I ended up using frozen chicken thighs and the remaining bell peppers and mushrooms for another stir fry dinner.  I also had some of the garlic chicken dipping sauce left from the other night so I decided to use that as the sauce base.  This meal ended up being a last minute dinner idea and it came out pretty good.  I unfortunately don't have a picture of it to share, it pretty much looked like the pork stir fry minus the noodles.

3 lbs. chicken thighs, cut into small pieces
1/2 onion, sliced
2 tbsp. garlic, minced
1 each red, yellow, orange bell pepper, sliced
2 cups white mushrooms, sliced

Garlic Soy Sauce:
I used about 1 cup of the remaining garlic soy sauce from the garlic chicken I made previously.  Here's the link to the recipe on the blog post:

Brown chicken with garlic.  Add onions and cook til rendered. Add remaining veggies and sauce.  Cook till veggies are tender and pepper to taste.

July 2010 Meal #11: Pork Stir Fry w/Won Ton Noodles

Meal # 11 which was Pork Stir Fry w/Won Ton Noodles was something I threw together.  The good thing about stir fry is that you can pretty much put in any kind of vegetables, meats, and sauces that you want.  You can't really mess this up since it's a mish mash of things that you like to eat.  I used some colorful veggies like red, yellow, and orange bell peppers, snap peas, and white mushrooms and just used an oyster sauce base for the sauce.  Here's the recipe below.

1 pkg. won ton noodles, cooked
1-2 lbs. chopped pork IE. pork belly, pork butt, or leaner meat if you prefer
1/2 onion, sliced
2 tbsp. garlic, minced
1 each red, yellow, orange bell pepper, cut into chunks
3 cups snap peas
2 cups bean sprouts
2 cups white mushroom, sliced
oyster sauce

Brown pork with garlic.  Add onions and cook till rendered.  Add the remaining veggies and oyster sauce (you may add as much oyster sauce to your taste), and cook until veggies are tender.  Add noodles and toss with mixture. Add pepper to taste and more oyster sauce if needed.


July 2010 Meal #8: Garlic Chicken

I postponed Meal #8 which was Garlic Chicken due to our kitchen faucet being broken.  I had originally planned on using chicken thighs for this but I still had drummettes to use since I was not able to find any green papaya for Meal #12. Besides I had a craving for this meal anyway so I just ended up making it anyway. 

I got the recipe from the cookbook "What Hawaii Likes to Eat" and it's supposedly a version of Mitsu-Ken's famous garlic chicken they have for their plate lunches.  I've actually never eaten at Mitsu-Ken but my hubby says it tastes pretty close to the original.  I like it alot and a great hit when I make it for get togethers at our home.

3 lbs. Chicken drummettes or wings

2 cups flour
2 tbsp garlic salt
1/2 tsp white pepper
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1 qt canola oil for frying

Garlic soy sauce:
1 cup soy sauce
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup water
1/4 tsp grated ginger
1 small clove garlic, grated
1/4 cup minced green onion
Shichimi togarashi (red pepper mix) to taste, optional

Rinse chicken and pat dry; set aside. Combine flour, garlic salt,pepper, and garlic powder in gallon size plastic bag; shake to mix well. Place chicken in plastic bag; shake to coat with flour mixture. Refrigerate 30-40 minutes.

Deep fry in oil to 365 degrees-375 degrees F until chicken is golden brown. Drain on absorbent paper and dip in garlic soy sauce to serve.

Prepare garlic soy sauce:
Combine all ingredients for garlic soy sauce; mix until well blended. Serve with fried chicken.

Below is the yummy fried goodness.  Boneless skinless chicken thighs can be used as well. Just slice it up, coat in flour mixture, and deep fry.

Mac Salad

The third dish that we were also in charge of was my "Famous Mac Salad." Within our group of friends I'm the go to person to prepare the mac salad for every BBQ, get together, and what have you.  My mac salad is always requested and I don't hesitate on making it since I'm pretty picky on how it's prepared and I DON'T like that Reser Brand of macaroni salad in a tub.  I don't like onions or celery in my mac salad, if I end up eating mac salad with either of those I will meticulously pick them out. 

So my concoction of mac salad is pretty simple and only contains six ingredients.  I used to put frozen peas in it until my husband requested that I no longer do that, it's actually better without the peas anyway.  I once in a great while will put in diced boiled potatoes if I have any on hand.  I've never shared this recipe before and it almost seems so secretive since I'm pretty sure any local girl from Hawaii probably makes it the same as I do. LOL.  Also, I never measure the ingredients for this in the exception of the macaroni.  I mince up the imitation crab and just eyeball it to see if there's enough and the mayo I add enough to make the mixture wet.  So the measurements below are an approximate of how much I think I use.

3 cups macaroni, boiled
5 eggs, boiled & diced
2 cups imitation crab, minced
3 cups mayonnaise
salt and pepper to taste

Mix all ingredients thoroughly.  Adding salt and pepper to taste.

Simple as that!  The picture below is the "party size" with paprika sprinkled on top to make it look a little more fancy.

Chow Fun

Wow! It's been nearly 10 days since I've last blogged and I'm WAY behind.  Also, I changed up the food blog to no longer be a just a food blog but instead an everything and anything blog.  So time to get back to business since I think I'm about six meals behind.

So to continue on from the last post about Kalua Pig for the baby luau, we also made a big pan of local style chow fun.  I would normally use the Hula Girl brand of dry chow fun but I didn't have enough of it and the Asian store that I get them at ran out.  So I ended up using two packages of the refrigerated already cooked chow fun noodles.  By the picture below you can't even tell the difference between the noodles and the guests who ate it didn't couldn't taste the difference either.  The recipe below will be for the "normal" size I would make for my family alone whereas the picture below was the big "party tray" size.  Also, on a side note you may want to cook it in two batches depending on the size of your pot, wok, or whichever cooking pan you're using.  Makes for easier mixing.

1 lbs. ground pork
1 can Spam, julienned
3 pkgs. chow fun noodles
1/2 onion, sliced
2 tbsp. garlic, minced
1 carrot, grated
1 kamaboko (fishcake, the pink & white swirled one), shredded
2-3 cups bean sprouts
1 bunch green onion, chopped
Oyster sauce

Boil noodles according to the package directions and set aside.  Brown ground pork with garlic.  Add onions, Spam, carrots, green onions, kamaboko, bean sprouts, and about 1/2 cup of oyster sauce and mix well.  Add cooked noodles and about 1/2 cup more oyster sauce and toss mixture thoroughly.  Season with some pepper to your liking.  You may add more oyster sauce to your preference if noodles are looking dry.

Here's the yummy outcome!