Archive for November, 2010

Nov 29

Holiday Get Together With My Dearest Friends

The holidays are the best times to catch up and have get togethers with friends. So last weekend, a few of us ladies got together at my house for a casual fun dinner. Our goal was to get crabs at the Ranch 99, but when we got there, all the crabs were sold out! If you only saw the horror on my face, 4 humongous tanks completely empty. I was hoping that they were hiding some in the back, but I was wrong, I guess they ran out due to Thanksgiving and selling it at $2.99 a pound. Lucky for us, the crab didn’t ruin our fun, I think we were just all excited to be at the supermarket together! We just got some fried crabs that they already had at Ranch 99 and then went to our other favorite place, Trader Joe’s! We got ourselves assorted cheese and crackers & hummus and pita bread. I would also like to add that their edamame hummus was deelious, we finished it all! Fortunately, one of my girlfriends also brought a wonderful layered  sushi rice roll, it is basically similar to a 7 layer dip, but made like a big sushi roll, layered with sushi rice, avocados, shrimp and tobiko on top! She brought nori (seaweed) from her hometown and we wrapped our own sushi and dipped it into soy sauce! It was REALLY good! And being the chef that she is, she also made a pumpkin cream cheese roll! OMG, it was the best dessert ever! We had a pumpkin pie and homemade kimchee from my favorite Korean mom, but after all the food, our tummies couldn’t handle devouring more…so more leftovers for me!  It was such a great night, nothing beats good food and spending time with amazing friends!  Love…love…love…..

 

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Nov 22

Pho at Little Window

Over the weekend, I had a last minute lunch with some old friends. It was my first time eating at Little Window (at least that’s what my friends called it) so I didn’t know what to expect. And interesting enough, I just found two yelp pages for them, both of them with very average ratings, one as Quan Ngon-Pho Ha Noi Vietnamese Noodle House and another as Pho Quan Ngon. Although the ratings are not so great on Yelp, this place was busy and had an ongoing line. I ordered a large pho, with the combination of well-done,  rare beef and beef balls noodles soup and my hubby ordered the satay beef noodles soup.  In my opinion, I thought the beef was tender and the soup base was pretty decent. I didn’t know why my noodles were the  flat thick noodles, but afterwards, I learned that Northern Style Pho is made with thick noodles, we learn something new everyday. I didn’t devour my hubby’s soup noodles, but I did have a taste of the satay soup and it was very flavorful!

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Nov 22

Ramen from Japan

When I was in Japan, I had to eat the heavenly ramen! When people tell you that the ramen in Japan is hella good, they are not lying, it is seriously the best ramen you’ll ever eat!   (And yes, I used the word ‘hella’)  So while I was at the Kyoto Isetan, on the restaurant floor that has about 7 ramen restaurants, I bought a box of ramen at one of the restaurants. Believe or not, the packaged soup base tasted better than some of the ramen restaurants in the Bay Area! Since it was about to expire, we had an excuse on a cold rainy night to slurp a hot bowl of ramen, I’m just sad that it was the last bit of it!  If you are in Japan, buy yourself some ramen home, you won’t regret it!

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Nov 20

Penne with Creamed Leek and Spinach

A friend of ours who works for Farm Fresh To You came over and gave us a wonderful box of organic vegetables and fruits! For those of you who are not familiar with Farm Fresh To You, they deliver fresh organic vegetables and fruits right to your door, it’s a great concept! We had lots of vegetables which I used to cook a big pot of vegetables soup. All we had left were some leek and spinach. I’m Chinese, I never grew up using leek, I had to actually go to YouTube to see how to clean and prepare it.  As I was searching for an easy recipe, I found a recipe for Fusilli with Creamed Leek and Spinach!  I didn’t have Fusilli but I had Penne and this creamy Leek and Spinach sauce was perfect for it! My hubby and I really enjoyed this pasta dish and I definitely recommend this simple recipe!

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Nov 16

Yummy Korean Food at the Restaurant at Kukje Market

I love the Kukje Market, and one thing I love about this market is their Restaurant! When we got there,  we were so happy to see that they created another room for the restaurant area! It was a small space before and the lines would get really long, so on Friday, the line  actually went fast. And the other best part about it is that both rooms have a TV and they were both showing the NBA game! On Friday nights, my hubby and I don’t want to leave the house because of the games and now, we found a place that shows them continuously!

One important thing I must convey is that service is very slow, the servers are super nice, but the kitchen is slow. So if you are having those very hungry grumple impatient days, I would not suggest eating here. Most of the time, I find myself walking to the cashier asking for the check and grabbing my own to go boxes. And really, it’s not a big deal to do this since they are very under staffed.

The food here is sooo good, I can smell the spice and taste the flavors as I am typing this! They have a variety of appetizers, tofu soups and Bibimbaps!  We ordered the Seafood Pancake, Spicy Tofu Soup with Ramen and a Seafood Bibimbap! Okay, I don’t know what it is with me, but I love Budae Jjigae, which was invented after the Korean war, when food was scarce and the Americans brought spam and hot dogs, the soup is made using spam, hot dog sausages, beans, vegetables, ramen noodles and spices.  This is the only thing I ever order at  Arang Restaurant. Anyhow, when I saw ramen for the soup, it made me think of it so I had to have it! The food took a while, but luckily Korean restaurants always serve condiments, so we were munching on kimchi, sesame flavored bean sprouts and spicy anchovies.  When the food finally came, our Seafood Pancake was perfect, cooked with lots of seafood and served with a soy sesame flavored dipping sauce! We love this dish here! The Spicy Tofu Soup with Ramen was such a comfort dish but it was definitely not a Budae Jjigae since there were no spams and all, but still very warm and delicious. The Seafood Bibimbap was HUGE and sooo  good, I think they made a much larger portion compared to the last time we ate here.  We were so happy with this dinner! The best part about eating here is that if you are early enough,  you can walk around and grocery shop after dinner to walk off the big meal, which is what we did! And the other best part is that you won’t be shopping hungry so you won’t want to buy every food item you see!

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Nov 09

Dinner for Two: Baked Garlic Salmon

We didn’t have time to go grocery shopping over the weekend, but thankfully we still had a bag of green beans and frozen salmon! I took the salmon out of the freezer the the night before so that it was ready for some marinating the very next day!  Times like these, I just have to make something from nothing, nothing being salt, pepper, garlic salt, chopped up fresh garlic, butter and some olive oil.

Here’s the easy peasy directions for this delicious dish!

The Ingredients:

Salmons, Salt, Pepper, Garlic Salt, Fresh Garlic, Butter and Olive Oil

Directions:

  1. Chop up LOTS of garlic, I didn’t keep count of how many, just LOTS since I am a garlic lover
  2. Keep one big piece of garlic and slice into half
  3. Place the salmons onto baking dish
  4. Rub the half piece of garlic on the salmon
  5. Sprinkle salt, pepper and garlic salt
  6. Then add the fresh chopped garlic
  7. Flip the salmon so the marinated side is facing the bottom of the baking dish
  8. Slice 2 small pieces of butter and place it underneath the salmon on the marinated side (if you don’t like too much butter, you can skip this step)
  9. Repeat steps 4-6 for the other side of the salmon
  10. Slice small pieces of butter and place on top
  11. Drizzle a little olive oil on top
  12. Preheat oven 375 degrees F
  13. Cover the baking dish with foil and bake for 25 minutes, or until easily flaked with a fork. (dependent on how thick the salmon is)
  14. Once it is done, I like to broil the top for about 5 minutes.

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Nov 08

I’m Hungry for some Taqueria Guadalajara

Over the weekend, I was craving Mexican food…so we decided to go somewhere close to home, Taqueria Guadalajara.  My hubby had actually gotten me a quesadilla suiza here, but I’ve never been to the restaurant myself.  The quesadilla suiza here is VERY GOOD.

So I found myself at this very small and decorated restaurant. I was hungry so I ordered the Enchiladas Plate with Carne Asada. While waiting for my plate, I munched on lots of chips and salsa, they also had a thick guacamole salsa, it was definitely not watered down and it was great with the chips! I then got my big plate of enchiladas, it was not just 2, it was 3 enchiladas! And the food? Well, let’s just say I finished this entire plate by myself…yes…it was that good!  I highly recommend this place if you are in the area!

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Nov 06

I *Heart* Popcakes

It’s official, I love popcakes! I recently got some popcakes from Popcakes, a friend of mine sent me the link, then I sent the link to everyone else I knew.  I loved their website, it’s full of vibrant colored popcakes. So yes, I had a chance to test them out and they tasted as good as they looked! They came in the mail in a box and when I opened the box, my popcakes were decorated like a bouquet, I loved the presentation, it was simply oh so cute!  I tried the Vanilla, Red Velvet and Chocolate flavors and all three were sweet and delicious. The round sugared cake was on a stick, just like a lollipop, and yes…it stayed on the stick as I was eating it, it didn’t crumble into pieces. The colorful sprinkled shells tasted perfect while the cake was fresh and moist, don’t expect a dry piece of cake! Especially the chocolate flavor, it reminded me of a chocolate truffle because the cake was rich and smooth like fudge brownie…it was like heaven! I was so impressed with the presentation, the creativity and the taste! I would highly recommend Popcakes for special occasions, they offer a variety of creative and fun designs for any occasion!  I can’t wait to find an excuse to get these, they are the new cupcakes!

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Nov 04

The ‘Bad For You’ Dinner at the Oracle Arena

We got some tickets for this season’s Warriors games at the Oracle Arena!  We love basketball, it’s one of our favorite pastimes! Since I wanted to get us out of the house to watch the games, I thought it was a great idea to buy some tickets for the season! The only problem with going to the game is that it is during dinner time! Well, it’s not really a problem but it becomes one when the food is super expensive and most of it doesn’t taste very good either. And, we cannot bring food in so we don’t really have a choice but to eat there or eat prior to the game.  Last week, we bought the most expensive and smallest hot dog with some nachos. When I opened the wrapping, all I could think of was, did I seriously just pay $5.75 for this? What the f@#$ is this?! And it gets better, the ketchup ran out at the stands. OMG, I was so hungry that I could have licked the cheese from my nachos! And trust me, we took so many jalapenos from the stand for our nachos that it probably made up for the missing ketchup! Anyhow, that’s all located on the upper levels concession stands. So yesterday, as we were just about to take the escalator up to the upper level seats, we noticed a concession stand downstairs called MOD dog…it cost $7.50 and we saw what was being served. Okay, it was more expensive, but this was a real hot dog with some toppings!  We ordered ourselves the Sonoran Hot Dog, there was a piece of bacon, salsa and mayo! The only bad thing about it was the bread, but other than that, it was a good ‘bad for you’ dinner! And I know I know, I can get a much cheaper one in the Mission District, but if you saw my choices for food, you would buy this too! Next time, I’m trying the one with Kim Chee!

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