Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Chicken Experiment

My favorite way of eating chicken is to have it fried, but a close second is the ginger spring onion chicken. I like it mostly for the ginger and spring onion part. The chicken is cooked plain before salted and is accompanied by ground fresh ginger and green onions sitting in a pool of oil.
For this chicken venture, I experimented by steaming drumsticks and de-boned thighs loaded with lots of ginger and green onions, marinated overnight with soy sauce, wrapped in lotus leaf.
Verdict: It's so-so. If I made it again, I'll try steaming it plain. No soy sauce.


I made Scot's Baps for the bread of our turkey sandwich lunches this week. Quite cheap, since I was making my own bread and the turkey as well, cooked over clarified butter. Every year after Thanksgiving, we get a Costco turkey because it's usually marked down. I like being frugal. I once saw turkeys advertised for 20 cents a pound, but didn't get it. There's just something scary about meat when it's cheaper than vegetables.

When I count the labor of making bread, it's totally not worth it to make your own. I can get two french baguettes from Costco for under 4 dollars baked that very morning, plus it taste way better than mines, plus I'm not stuck at home for the whole day. I guess I bake bread for other reasons. I want to get better at it, I strive for the simple life, and it's fun. I also take pride in it, but not so much when it turns out worse than the loaf I made before it.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Heavy Cream in Bulk

When shopping for butter or heavy cream, it's much more worth it to buy in bulk. Just by spending a dollar or two more, you get three times as much. On this occasion, we had excess heavy cream and had to use it up quick before expiration. After using it on a couple of ice cream batches, the last of it was used making a seafood quiche. I didn't follow a specific recipe, but it still turned out really good. Note to self: seafood quiche is very flexible. This one is made with shrimps.

My Favorite Succulent

While searching for plants to make my terrarium, I discovered lithops. What is a lithop? Answer: It is the most coolest succulent ever! To learn more about them, I spoke to my dear landscape architect coworker, who I consider a succulent expert. The next day she gifted me my first lithop and this weekend I went to three different nurseries all in Berkeley/Oakland to find more plants for my terrarium. My findings include another lithop and a green pokey thing. I can't transplant them until they're out of their dormant stage, so my terrarium will have to wait.

I also got two small air plants. I wrapped dragon moss around the roots and secured it to a rock with floral wire.

B-day Dinner

spent monday making homemade b-day dinner...
because he likes innards... chicken liver pate...

  • 1 lb chicken livers
  • milk for soaking
  • 4 tbsp clarified butter
  • 1 medium sized onion, skinned and finely chopped
  • 1 crushed clove garlic
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 tbsp sherry or brandy
  1. Rinse the chicken livers and cover with milk for 2 hrs.
  2. Dry chicken livers.
  3. Fry livers in the butter until they change color.
  4. Reduce the heat, add the onion and garlic cover and cook for 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and cool.
  5. Add the tomato paste and sherry or brandy.
  6. Blend until smooth and turn into a small dish.
  7. Serve with crackers or toast.
I always wanted to make roasted bone marrow and after reading that Anthony Bourdain would choose this as his last meal, I definitely had to make it.
just take 3" marrow bones and roast for 15 mins. @ 450 F. Serve with coarse sea salt on the side and crostini.
Next, Savory Polenta. I used Alton Brown's recipe. I didn't mix so well, so it had lumps, but still good. I would make it again, but mix better next time.

And last before dessert...Julia Child's Beef Bourguignon
I wanted to make this after watching Julie and Julia.

This was served over home made egg noodles. My noodles turned out really funny looking, very wrinkled. I should of took a picture of it, so you can laugh too. Yup, they were that funny and we still ate it, no waste. I will have to practice making egg noodles again.