Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Eat out in TX means ...

I am clearing the fridge to go home, thus we have been eating out for the last few day and look at some of the food here. See la, can don't cook or not? Hahaha unless drive out to some 方圆五百里 to get some decent chinese food if nit surrounding me are all something like this ...

Dinner @ Applebee's
Applebee's advertisement slogan,'We are not millionaire, we cannot afford to eat Applebee everyday.'
My first time here and there is a promotion; 1 appetiser and 2 Entree for USD20 bucks!
Our appetiser Spinach and Artichoke Dip with tortilla chips
Our main, Chicken finger with fries ...
And YQ's BBQ riblet ...
Erm luckily everything we ordered are very finger food and we manage to finish everything ...
Lunch @ Olive Garden
This time round, hubby ordered the 'Unlimited' Soup and Salad while I gotten myself a appetiser.
Mussels di Napoli, fancy name; this is just Mussels in the shell, simmered with wine, garlic-butter and onions.

Lunch before take off @ Ruby's Diner (Houston Airport)
Chicken Finger Salad
Golden-fried, all white meat chicken strips atop fresh greens with green onion, smoked bacon, egg, tomatoes, shredded Cheddar and Monterey Jack cheeses and Honey Mustard dressing.
A basket of fries ...
Buffalo-sauced breaded Prawn with 3 sauce
A salad and 2 sides is ALOT too ...
So fattening, oily and unhealthy huh!
Even their salads are very fattening with all the cheese and salad sauces and BACON bits!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Home Cook Food - Vegetarian Fried Rice

I will be leaving Texas soon and so I am clearing out my fridge and there isn't any meat but I am left with lots of vegie and some dried mushroom. So my chinese version of a Korean bibimbap and coincidentally I still has some tubes of Gochujang that I gotten from Korea, just nice! Hahahaha ...

Ingredient include :
Dried mushroom and Dried Cloud ear fungus (黑木耳), Canned chestnut, 大白菜 Nappa Cabbage, eggs and lots of garlic!
All the different texture make the fried rice, crunchy and chewy!

Monday, October 18, 2010

Home Baked - My 3RD Japanese Cotton Cheesecake!

My digital scale is here and at about 10pm, I pester hubby to drive me to Walmart to get Philadelphia Cream Cheese! By the time I start baking, it is already 12.00MN! But I am so excited, and with a digital scale, everything seems so easy!! And this time round, I am more prepare and knowing what to expect; neater as well.

I use ellenaguan2 this time round. I find her recipe most logical and easy to follow. She has step by step picture in her blog!!

Credit : ellenaguan2.blogspot.com
Ingredients: (8" Round tin)
250g Philadelphia Cream Cheese (I use USA version 8oz)
140ml Fresh Milk (150ml of milk)
55g Unsalted Butter
30g Cake Flour
20g Cornflour
4 Egg Whites
4 Egg Yolks
1/2 Teaspoon Lemon Juice
Grated Rinds of 1 Lemon
95g Sugar
1/4 Teaspoon Cream of Tartar

1. Dice cream cheese into cubes and soak with milk (place mixture in a glass mixing bowl or double boiler) for about 30 minutes.
2. While waiting, melt the butter and set aside.
3. Put the cream cheese mixture in a double boiler(refer to the picture above), stir until smooth and creamy then stir in the melted butter and set aside to cool.
4. After the mixture cools down, stir in the flour mixture(sieved the cornflour and cake flour together) then follow by one egg yolk at a time, whisk the mixture till well combined.
5. Next stir in the lemon juice and rind and whisk the mixture till smooth then set aside.
6. In another clean bowl, add cream of tartar into egg white and whisk until foamy.
7. Divide the sugar into 3 portion and whisk into the egg white mixture until it becomes stiff peak form.(refer to the picture above for the egg white texture, this takes about less then 5 minutes or so)
8. Slowly blend the egg whites into the cream cheese batter and mix well until colour combines.
9. Place the mixture in a greased prepared tin and give it a big bang to released the bubbles.
10. Bake the cake in hot water bath at 170 degree for 15 minutes then reduce the temperature to 150 degree and bake for another 40 - 45 50 minutes.
11. Cool the cake in the pan with the door ajar completely, then set aside in the fridge for about 1 hour or more before serving it for a better texture and taste.

~ Water bath is a pan of hot water placed into an oven. The hot water provides a constant, steady heat source and ensures even, slow cooking for recipes.

~ The best type of pan to use for a water bath is a roasting pan or other pan with sides at least 1-1/2 to 2 inches high. That will allow you to put enough water into the pan so it won't all evaporate before your pudding or cheesecake has baked.
I am a NOOB's noob, so I cannot manage to take photographs and baked at the same time! So please make do with the after action, hahaha ~

After adding the batter into my the aluminium foil, I realised I cannot put 3 of them into my oven, so the last one is abit hanging in the air ...
Everything look good in the oven huh! I use a constant 150Deg C for 50minute, because my oven cannot make it! Usually for the one hour, I will be by the oven side, washing or just staring in making sure my cake is not burnt! I do not trust my OVEN.
As usual the cake sink but then it still sink nicely, no crack  and not much crease ...
If my oven is bigger and the fire is better, all the cheesecake will be prettier!!

It is really YUMMMY!

I need to summon more courage and use my BAKE PANS!
Hahahaha ~

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Dinner at Olive Garden

I have been wanting to come here ever since, Kendra Baskett (Hugh Hefner's ex girlfriend) proclaiming Olive Garden's cuisine as "My Soul Food". Soul food, must be GOOD right!! Hahaha ...
There menus items is not overwhelming ...
But more than enough for us!

The environment were cosy and warm, and very homely ...

I LOVE LOVE LOVE the bread! I must find the recipe and DO IT!
I had 2.5 stick and with the SOUP, I am so FULL already!!

This is the select 2 Apetiser; we had the Deep fried Calamari and Clam with Mushroom.

Hubby's order Tour of Italy; Homemade lasagna, lightly breaded chicken parmigiana and creamy fettuccine alfredo.
My Chicken & Shrimp Carbonara ; Chicken and shrimp with bucatini pasta in a parmesan cream sauce with pancetta bacon and roasted red peppers, baked and topped with seasoned breadcrumbs. 
I totally dig Cheese and cream but this is TOO MUCH for US! Almost 3/4 of our main entree is packed for To-go (American's way of saying Tabao)!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Oven and a Kitchen Scale

Hubby got me NEW GADGET!!


A new DIGITAL oven from Black and Decker Walmart and a DIGITAL Kitchen Scale from Amazon.com.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Home Baked - Italian Walnut butter cake

I found this version of Walnut butter cake online which gave their measurements in CUPS, so i can just do it without meddling with weighing machine!!
How not to gain weight!?

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Searching for a new apartment ...

I want a bigger square area, newer appliances, better layout, fireplace etc etc etc ...
But non have a view like this to match!
The view is different EVERY DAY!
Even Toto loves and have learn to nap out there on our foldable chair!
Toto really fall asleep out there in the patio!
Sigh, how to move?

Monday, October 11, 2010

Home Baked - Japanese Cheese Cake

 OMG, baking is VERY difficult!! I am such a 没大脑 person, this is DIFFICULT for me! It is difficult for me to follow Instructions step-by-step! And it is such a disaster, this is my 2nd trial. And in my 2nd trial I have to redo the egg yolk mixture because I fxxxk it up PLUS my dog has a peepee accident that I have to clear it up ... arrrrghhhhhh ~

But in the end I have something that is edible, and hubby say nice! Almost like the Japanese Cake we brought from Ranch99! *beam*  It is always very exciting to see the cake RISE, but that doesn't guarantee suceess because it might still SINK and CRACK or whatever! I don't cake about the 'exterior', how they look like la, as long as can eat ...
And hubby want to 'REWARD' me with a DIGITAL weighing scale, I had a hard time with a spring scale and made a mess everywhere!
I want to practise until I AM PERFECT with Japanese Cheesecake because me and hubby LOVE this cake!

For the above cheesecake, I try to follow this as closely as I can ...

The first disastrous cheesecake ...

Saturday, October 9, 2010

My weekend - Westie Walk and Sachses Fall Festival

 Early in the morning we wake up for a North Texas Westie Rescue Walk! I thought it would be a 2hour walk, but then it is just a 5 minute walk around the small park, wahahahahaha!! That explain the sneaker ...
Hubby in the midst of a group photo taking session!

We left before the event finish to Sachse Heritage Park for a Fall Festival Event, but to our major dissapointment, the park is TREELESS!! What do they mean by FALL event when there isn't any 'Fall' tree to show! And it was tooooo hot to stay, we chop chop finish the walk and left!

Toto is so hot, his tongue so long! I so scared he kana heat stroke!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Home cook food - Curry Puff!

Hubby has been MISSING curry puffs very badly, so I try la. I find it rather bland and tasteless but hubby say it is edible laaaaa, hahaha. But then I only succeeded on my 2nd try! The first set was a disaster, hahaha but then practise make perfect. I had gotten croissant skin to try again soooon ...

Looks ok hor ...

Monday, October 4, 2010

Home Cook food - Bak Chor Mee!

When you are oversea, desperate and homesick; MIRACLES do happen huh! Hahaha, this is not the first time I make this but then it is getting better. Hubby loves it and has been REQUESTING for this for months! Finally...

Alot of work, and he has to eat this for consecutively 3days 2 meal each!!!

Anyway this is very simple to prepare;

First a small pot of braised mushroom for the sauce! Soak one bowl of dried mushroom, braised it with minced meat, vinegar, soy sauce, sugar and salt, water and a pinch of 5spice powder.

2ndly For the Mee Pok ; Vinegar, Oyster sauce, soy sauce and sesame oil, and the braised mushroom sauce!

Last step : Boil the meatball, minced meat and Pork liver!
Combine all in a bowl, WALA!
Bak Chor Mee ...
Garnish with Cilantro, Spring onion and shallots as preferred!
Maybe I should try to fried PIG OIL huh!

P/S : Something like this Muffin Farm ...

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Contracted officially for FOUR yrs!

SOP; flower, chocolate and buffet at Japan House! Hahaha but then I always felt terrible after eating buffet. The after effects is alway; Indigestion, light headedness, and nauseous and worst case scenario would be FEVER like one hour after the buffet, UNLESS I vomit the food out!! But still I LOVE buffet, but hubby very scare to bring me eat buffet, because IT IS ALWAYS like that ...

I guess my stomach has shrink ALOT!
A bouquet of very pretty flower ...

And hubby trying out his hand to bake a OUT OF A BOX brownie ...

Hahahaha a very HARD Brownie aka BISCUIT! Now he knows although it seems easy but it is NOT AS easy as it seems when you do it yourself!!

And he requested for steamboat on Sunday after a filing BUFFET on Saturday!!
Bleahhhhh effort from hubby, ZERO!


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