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Location: California, United States
Interests: The making and consuming of food, the Food Network, high heels, rock climbing, sunshine, obsessing over my tummy.
Occupation: Research and development
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Boring entry with no pictures, sorry!
Anyways, I've been in SoCal for 4 full days now and it's raining. Luckily I had 2 good days of clear skies (I could see the mountains!) before the clouds came in. So far, I've been eating very well; if I so much as look at a piece of food, my mom swoops in and asks me if I need to eat...even if I did eat an hour or 2 ago. There have been lots of favorites: stir fried crab, pork and bamboo shoot in clay pot, roast duck, offal of various sorts, etc. With each trip home, I am surprised to find that I crave more vegetables, but I shouldn't be because this is pretty much what I grew up on. Since leaving home, I've gotten used to more salads and more variety in what green things I eat.
Being here also makes me realize stark differences, I don't know if they're generational, cultural, or whatever. For instance, I was with my mom at Costco on Saturday and she asked me to help her find a snack for my brothers. We found ourselves in the frozen food aisle and my mom reached in a freezer case to grab a box of prepackaged hamburgers. I think I just stood there in horror and disgust for a second before I made her put it back. So she asked me to pick out "a better option" to which I replied that it would be found away from the frozen foods section. I don't know how many times I'd done this already, but I had to show my mom how to read a nutrition label. We ended up buying some bread and deli meat, whew.
Another example of this happened last night when my mom was making my dad his lunch (a sandwich from said bread and deli meat). My mom assembled everything and then added SALT and pepper to it along with some iceburg lettuce. My dad said, "no no, don't add salt" (my parents have a problem with high blood pressure) and I had to add that deli meat was already full of salt (another issue with not reading the label). I also suggested that maybe she could try using a darker green lettuce next time for more vitamins, but she said that my brothers like iceburg and "won't eat something else".
I'm frustrated and sad! How can I ever hope for people to eat better while I'm still struggling to teach my parents (and if my brothers are so pigheaded about what they [don't] eat)?!
I already had this conversation earlier this evening with my friend Jeannie and she replied that this idea will take many generations to take hold and added that the whole concept of eating locally and sustainably in SoCal seems to be more of a trendy thing (or for the well-to-do) rather than a way of life. I see her point.
There is a bright point, thankfully. Steven, my mom, and I went to the Alhambra farmer's market on Sunday where we got some awesomely sweet pomegranites, carrots, and a damn large stalk of brussel sprouts. My mom laughed and said she couldn't believe that I wanted the sprouts and warned me that they didn't taste good. I asked how she had prepared them and she replied, "boiled in a soup".
Well, there's your problem (why is it that Asian moms seem to want to boil everything in a soup??).
When we got home, my dad echoed my mom's sentiments and I told them that if they didn't like them after I made them, that I would eat them. So tonight, I roasted some of the sprouts and everyone enjoyed them, even Steven! My dad even said that he'll plant some next time.
More to come next time.
(sorry for the crappy picture).
Yes, pesto. This one has walnuts, cilantro, and sundried tomatoes. I made this during the week that Alfred was away for business (and Big Game).
These days, I don't get home until about 7 or 8, so making dinner can be a challenge. Honestly, earlier this week, dinner was a handful of Cheetos, a square of Theo chocolate, and some Akmaks and some cheese from the farmer's market. It's the new fad diet, I swear.
I used this as a base for a creamy pasta dish that I adapted from one of Ina Garten's recipes (I know I've blogged about Pesto Pasta and Peas here before), but instead of sour cream, I use greek yogurt. My pasta of choice is fusilli because lots of sauce and veggies stick in the corkscrew crevices :P
Since I was cooking for the week, I also made this really great farro dish. Cook up some farro. Saute some matchsticks of (multicolored) carrots and onion, then add the farro in. Make a sauce of coconut milk, soy sauce, lime juice, ginger (I like lots), garlic...and add that in, too. I finished with a garnish of cilantro and chopped up a handful of chili lime cashews (woo Trader Joe's).
Tomorrow evening, I head to SoCal for a week, so I can look forward to some mom-food and some decent Mexican food. Carne asada torta, I am coming for you!
|Or at least a glimpse of what we had for the big dinner. Alfred and I hosted Thanksgiving dinner for a few people who were not traveling home for the holiday.|
There's Alfred, hard at work chopping up collard greens.
Collards waiting to be chopped up, my pumpkin pie, one of the 2 loaves of challah, and you can see the turkey in the oven. Usually our challah has raisins in it, but we figured they might not go so well with turkey and gravy. The pie recipe I used this year came straight our of the latest issue of Cook's Illustrated. So freaking delicious, if you like fragrant, smooth, silky pumpkin pie. I do think it is the best pumpkin pie filling I have ever made and tasted. I'm just sad that there is just one slice left.
Turkey, pie, challah, collards. Our guests brought sweet potatos and mashed potatos. Other yummy dishes that graced the table were a fantastic crab and butternut squash bisque, green beans with cherry tomatos and fresh mozzerella cheese, and a plaintain loaf. Of course, there was also plenty to drink.
Turkey! We followed the recipe in the same issue of Cook's Illustrated, if you're curious.
So I have to say that dinner was a success and we are currently enjoying the leftovers!
|Holy mother. Has it really been 2 months? I guess I've started grad school, bought a house, and celebrated a bday here. Yeah, that sounds like 2 months work of STUFF to me!|
I definitely don't bake as much as I used to, but I've started a new list of things I want to make. Here's an apple tart for you.
Isn't it cute?
And a close-up. I'm a sucker for buttery, flakey crust. Consider it a weakness!