Peanut butter bread and green smoothies–in the Vitamix

Even though green smoothies are one of the main reasons I originally invested in a Vitamix sadly, I have only made 1 or 2 since I’ve owned my Vitamix since March of this year. Partly, because there are so many other delicious things that I have been making with my Vitamix, I truly have not had the time. Well, it’s getting to be the end of summer, and I thought that I had better start gorging on fresh fruits and vegetables. So, I thought I would make more green smoothies. I made one last weekend (did not take pictures) with grapes, banana, pineapple, apple, spinach and ice. I added no additional sweetener and it was delicious! Today, I decided to make another and remembered to take photos. Continue reading

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Belgium almond thins and omelet-in-a-bag

Last week while in the office, my co-cubie and I busted out some Jules Destrooper almond thins. This was the first time I had ever heard of or even tried these Belgium cookies. Delish! I looked on the back of the thin box to see just what was in these heavenly crispy cookies. The ingredient list was surprisingly short and simple: Wheat Flour, Brown Sugar, Butter, Almonds (10%), Salt, Leavening, Sodium Bicarbonate. That was it. I immediately hit up my favorite search engine (I heart Google!) and began on my quest to find a copycat recipe. I wish I could say that I was inspired (and patient) enough to experiment on my own with the proportions of that simple ingredient list. But the truth of the matter is, I just wanted to path of least resistance to those cookies! Continue reading

5-minute plastic bag ice cream

I’m not sure what my obsession this summer with ice cream is all about, but for some reason, I keep Googling different ways to make ice cream So, far this summer, I have made mango ice cream, strawberry ice cream (both in the Vitamix), green tea ice cream and sesame seed ice cream (both on the stove and by mixing my hand) and my latest adventure yesterday was “How to make 5-minute plastic bag ice cream”. Here are the simple list of ingredients: Continue reading

niu rou mian_1st attempt: A-

Here was my first attempt at Taiwanese Beef Noodle soup. Recipe courtesy of R.

First, I pan fried all the seasonings.

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Then, added in the beef shank from our local butcher.

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Here is the finished product. I served it for lunch on Sunday (Taiwanese Father’s Day) for R and I and J and M (Taiwanese restaurant owners). I ate mine with egg noodles (the yellow colored ones) and everyone else had the white noodles. The kick from the peppercorns and dried chilis was delightful. Noone died, so I give myself an A-.

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Here are my recipe notes from R:

oil, star anise (11), dried chilies (12), peppercorns (small tablespoon), Chinese bark (2 pieces), salt (10 turns of the salt grinder), 4 scallions (break into 3rds by hand)–fry all this together, low heat

cut shank meat. cook in boiling water for about 3-5 minutes.

add meat to seasoning mixture. cook all on high heat until meat almost cooked (~5-7 minutes).

put meat and mixture into big pot with water and cook on high heat.

add 1 Corell-sized bowl of soy sauce and 1/2 the amount of rice wine.

add 1/4 c sugar

skim off the yucky stuff as it cooks. after soup boils, reduce heat to low-ish and continue to simmer for about 1 to 1.5 hours, or until meat is super tender.

taste broth before serving with noodles. if not salty enough, can add salt or soy sauce.

serve with preserved mustard greens and/or hot peppers/relish.

notes: added scallions (chopped up with knife) on top of noodle soup as garnish, but didn’t really like “raw” taste of scallions with this soup. next time will probably follow recipe and cook scallions. may add very small amount of really finely chopped green onions as garnish (b/c it is very pretty).

seasonings and amounts listed make a mild to medium hot broth. may want to decrease chilies and/or peppercorns (ma la) for guests who don’t eat spicy food.

made enough for 4 generous bowls, plus leftovers for 3 more servings.

making tai yang bing (Taiwanese Sun Cakes)

Tonight I attempted to make Taiwanese Tai Yang Bing.

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The recipe I used calls for 3 different doughs: a water dough (the blobs on the left), the oil dough (the blobs in the middle) and the filling (the light-colored blobs on the right). The ingredients are simple. Mostly flour (all-purpose and cake), confectioner’s sugar, maltose, shortening and butter. Surprisingly, they weren’t as hard as I thought they would be to make. Continue reading