Tuesday, August 18, 2015

BUGS (no bugs)

This is a small restaurant which seats probably no more than 20 at a time.  I sat by the bar counter where 2 lady chefs behind the counter that prepare the food.  One makes most of the sushi-based food and the other the cooked and sautéed dishes.

My kale salad with mushroom was so delicious with butter slightly browned flavor coming through. (I think that is butter is taste).
I got tempted to order the fried chicken pieces coated with a spicy sweet sauce and something I dip in creamy sauce. (Answer to buffalo wings). The chicken pieces are tender and crisp outside.
I had to try the Risotto with soft shell shrimp, scallops, uni and oyster.  This was a big dinner. It came with thin slices of pickled cucumber.

BUGS

Bugs Restaurant - New York, NY | OpenTable

OpenTable › restaurants › bugs
 Rating: 4.4 - 32 reviews - Price range: $30 and under



Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Quick Dinner

Main course: Broiled fatty tuna belly
Vegetable:  White asparagus on baguette toast
Side:  japanese rice with sushi vinegar
Dessert: Hazelnut eclair from Eclair Bakery
MAIN COURSE:
1/2 lb fatty tuna belly (available at Japanese grocery that carry fresh seafood)
1/3 c of miso with melted butter
2TB melted butter

Brush one side of the fish with butter and the sides.  Smother the top of the fish with the mixture of miso with melted butter

Brook for 5 minutes and set aside.

WHITE ASPARAGUS - Vegetable
1 lb of fresh white asparagus
1 TB fresh lemon juice
1 tsp salt
4 cups of water
Good quality mayonnaise

Peel asparagus from 3/4 top to bottom of each asparagus to remove the fibrous skin. From about 1/3 to 1/4 from the bottom of each asparagus, bend the stem to break off the tough bottom to discard.  Put water in a large frying pan and teaspoon of salt. Squeeze fresh lemon juice in the water. Boil and then simmer the asparagus in the water covered, for about 30-35 minutes.

Drain in paper towel and cool.

Slice the baguette diagonally about 1/3 inch thick and toast it slightly.

Spread about a tablespoon on each of the sliced toasted baguette.  Lay about 3 cooked asparagus on each toast. Enjoy it. (The asparagus may be longer the sliced baguettes. But you can eat the tips first.  I do this to reduce my consumption of carbs and have more vegetables.

I also made Jaaoanese rice to accompany my fish main course.  After j cooked my Japanese rice, I added the sushi rice mix in it and stirred the rice to incorporate the sushi powder for rice.
The treat for my low cal and low carb dinner was a hazelnut eclair from Eclai Bakery.




Tuesday, July 28, 2015

STRIPED EGGPLANT

My favorite eggplant is the striped eggplant. They have a sweeter flavor than usual.

What is a striped eggplant?

Now that you know a little more about this variety, let me share my simple Italian inspired recipe to cook and serve it.

INGREDIENTS:
2 small variegated eggplants (Caliope)
2 tsp salt
1/3 or more c of olive oil

2 medium size tomatoes (chopped coarsely)
1 big clove of garlic
Olive oil
Fresh basil (about 10 leaves)
Premium olive oil at the end
Freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Above is the eggplant I sliced and fried.

First cut off the stem of the egg any. Then cut the eggplant lengthwise about 5 slices per eggplant.

Sprinkle the sliced eggplant with salt all over. Let it sit for a couple of minutes and then wipe it well with paper towel.

Heat olive oil a batch at a time and fry the eggplant till golden in each side. Drain and pat well with paper towel.

When all done, mince the garlic and stir fry in a separate pan (I used a wok) till softened beginning to get golden; then,  add the chopped tomatoes.
Stir the sauce till it thickens. 

I keep a pot of organic basil plant over my window so I can cut off fresh basil when I need it.
I mix the sliced basil in the sauce towards the last minute or two.
I take about 3 slices of the fried eggplant and arrange them on my plate. Spoon some sauce on too. Drizzle with top quality extra virgin olive oil (I used the premium one I bought from Spain recently) and garnished it with freshly grated Parmesan cheese.

If you want to be a vegetarian for the night, have double servings of this like I did tonight.

I buy my produce mostly from Whole Foods. And no, I am not a paid advertisement for them, I just like shopping at their grocery store because I feel safe that my food do not have harmful carcinogenic pesticides.



What's in my Kitchen Pantry?

The Where is Assam?

The information above will tell you about Assam where the tea I brought back from India originates from.

As to what to do with the Assam tea when you bring it back home, here's what I learned how to make the awesome Chai tea:
You can get any brand that says Assam tea. I have both up above that I brought back from India.

You cut some pieces of ginger - smash or slice them and add 2-3 seeds of cardamom.  The fresher looking they are the better.  It has more flavor.  I added a tap of the tea and poured about 1 -1/2 cups of water.  Boil about a few minutes.

Drain in a container.  You can now add sugar or not; and drink as is or add milk. You can also add ice to drink it cold.
Serve it without... Or
With cream. Now you have homemade Chai Tea.

The above recipe is what I learned when I visited India last year.  It does not contain whipped cream.  But you can do that and add your sugar as you please.  Also, it did not have cinnamon - just the cardamom.

Try this and you'll like it!

THINGS IN MY KITCHEN PANTRY

Although I don't have an expansive size kitchen, my compact cabinets do house extraordinary condiments or food.

Today, I share with you:
Black garlic. They taste like Carmelites fruit.  It almost reminds me of the old cold remedy Pertussin.  Closest flavor I associate it with.
Above is smoked garlic.  I'm not sure if it hardened because I did not use it right away.  But it does have a little smoky flavor. I probably need a a more fresh version to appreciate it.

All these were bought from Whole Foods Market at 2 different areas.  I prefer the black garlic.

That's it for today!
Till next time!
For more info on Black Garlic:

 

Saturday, July 11, 2015

STAR WARS CHILDREN'S PARTY

  I just found someone who makes white and dark chocolate Lego chocolates.  My daughter-in-law's mother makes the birthday cakes every year.

This time, I thought of contributing to the idea of the cup cakes -
I stuck the dark chocolate Legos on top of the cup cakes that she had made with light sabers.  The dark chocolate looked like Darth Vader.
I also arranged the white chocolate Legos on a black Japanese tray in a row to look like Storm Troopers.
A relative brought a watermelon that they cut like Death Star.

The grapes were strung in sticks to pretend like light sabers. 

To order the chocolate Legos, I ordered them from MacarOn Cafe and requested it from their Baker.  Picked it up from one of their branches near me.




Wednesday, July 8, 2015

MORNING FRENCH TOAST


Simple Recipe:
1 egg
1/3 c of half and half
2 TB sugar
3 drops of vanilla
Grated nutmeg

Beat the ingredients above together
Dip the 1 inch wide sliced French Brioche bread and fry in butter.

Serve with warm maple sugar and some butter.

I used my old French made brioche bread from Whole Foods with French flour de del butter, organic maple syrup

Batter has a little unbleached sugar, vanilla and nutmeg

Nitrate free bacon, boiled in little water till it evaporates - using a press to keep them evenly cooked.

#WholeFoods