Archive for April, 2010|Monthly archive page

Spring Rolls

Finally, a spring roll post! Spring rolls are so easy to make, although the prep time is very time consuming, and I’d say they’re pretty healthy for you. For some reason, whenever Chong and I go to Saigon, I’d always want to order the make-your-own spring rolls for $9. That’s pretty expensive, considering that there’s only 5-7 wraps in there! I can make my own spring rolls for that amount of money–and I’d still have a ton of ingredients leftover.

Argh. Since I made this a few weeks ago, I lost track of my ingredients and measurements so bear with me on my guesstimations.

Spring Roll

Ingredients:

– 2-3 lbs of pork (shoulder or butt)
– 1 package of Asian BBQ powder (char siu)
– 1 cup water
– salt, to taste
– black pepper, to taste
– 1 bunch cilantro
– 3 carrots, grated
– 15 pieces of red lettuce, quartered
– 1 cooked pork meatloaf, julienned
– 1 package of rice wrappers
– 1 package rice vermicilli noodles, cooked according to the package

Directions:

1. In a large ziploc bag, mix the packet of Asian BBQ powder (char siu) with salt, black pepper, and water. Add the pork and marinade for 2-3 hours, or overnight.

2. Turn the oven to ‘Broil’ and place the pork in a pan. Broil the pork for 7-10 mins on each side, or until cooked. Transfer to a plate and let cool. Once cooled, slice thinly.

3. In a large bowl or cake pan (depending on the size of your rice paper), add 1/2 inch of hot water (cake pan) or 2 cups of hot water (bowl). Soak the rice paper in the hot water either by placing the whole wrapper in the water or soak 3/4 of the wrapper and rotate slowly. The rice paper just needs a few seconds in the water because it’ll soften up out of the water.

4. Lay the soft/wet rice paper on a plate and add the lettuce, noodles, carrots, cilantro, bbq pork, and pork meatloaf 1/4 from the edge.

5. Starting from the shorter edge, fold the rice paper over the ingredients, then roll it over once, then tuck in the left and right edges and continue rolling. *Like how you would roll egg rolls or a burrito*

It’s so much harder to try to explain how to make spring rolls than it is to show it. Next time, I’ll try to post a video of it up.

Spring Roll Pictorial

Package I used/Powder+salt+black pepper/Add water

Chunks of pork—>Marinading—>Ready to be broiled

Next time, more powder, less water and all in 1 bag

Noodles/Carrots, cilantro, bbq pork & julienned pork meatloaf/red leaf lettuce (uncut)

I’m in love with this wrapper.  It’s better than the kind I usually get (and it’s HUGE!)

Finished

I made about 20-25 spring rolls, with a lot of left over ingredients.  During the spring/summer, I love growing or buying my own fresh herbs from the Farmer’s Market and add mint and sweet or Thai basil and cucumber for a little crunch.  Some version include shrimp but Chong is allergic to shellfish so no shrimp for him.  Spring rolls are so easy to make and very refreshing.  I can’t wait until the weather gets warmer so I can have an excuse to make and eat more spring rolls.  : )

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Chicken Katsu

Ever since I got obsessed with bentos a few years ago, I started looking at Japanese and Korean food and how to make them.  I came across chicken katsu from a few of my favorite bento sites and decided to make it since the recipe looked so easy (and it is!).  I’ve been making it ever since then and everyone’s liked it so far.  I like smaller pieces of chicken because it cooks faster and the chicken isn’t so dry.

Chicken Katsu (2-3 servings)

– 2 chicken breasts, cut into thirds

– 1 cup panko breadcrumbs

-1 egg

– 1/2 flour

– 2 – 4 tbspn oil

– salt

– black pepper

Directions:

1.  Salt and pepper the chicken pieces.

2.  Roll the chicken pieces into the flour, then the egg, then the panko breadcrumbs.  Repeat for all chicken pieces.

3.  Heat the oil in a pan.  Add the chicken and cook on medium high for 7-10 mins on each side or until juices run clear.

4. (Optional) Once the chicken is cooked, lay it on a cooling sheet so that the air can circulate around the chicken.  I find that if I just lay the chicken on a plate, the bottom half will end up soggy.

Chicken Katsu Pictorial

Chicken pieces

 

Starting from the left: flour, egg, and panko

 

Breaded chicken

 

Cooling off

 

Cilantro, onion, tomato & pepper

 

Pepper mash

 

Rice, stir fried noodles, garlic mushrooms, chicken katsu, & pepper

 

Perfect Sunday

What a perfect way to end the weekend.  The weather was wonderful and I didn’t want to spend the whole day indoors so Chong and I went on a picnic with my cousin and her husband.  It was nice to just relax and enjoy the day.  We went a bit late so there were a lot of people but most of them went home while we were still there.  We had planned on taking her baby brother but his parents had taken him over to a relative’s house so maybe we’ll go to the zoo next weekend since the weather is supposed to be nice then, too.

A couple of food pictorials coming soon.  Check by later this week.  Happy Sunday!

Food, food, and more food!

I am so tired of cooking and eating right now. I don’t have any cravings or any motivation to cook and/or eat anything in particular. I’ve just been making whatever’s in the fridge. Grocery shopping is not as fun anymore. It seems like Chong  and I always get the same old stuff whenever we go grocery shopping. Sighs. Not even my favorite website can help me out right now. I guess I’ll either start going to eat at my parents’ house (not really reasonably) or else let Chong cook.

So this is what we’ve been eating for the past month or so.

Beef Stew

Beef Stew, thickened

Chong and I made dinner together last week.  He made a noodle stir-fry dish while I made a chicken and veggie dish.  It turned out to be a good match.  Beats take-out any day!