Posted in Food, Slice of life

Garlic Bread

I craved for garlic bread today. I love garlic. I don’t eat it all the time, but I do like to have it in as many dishes as possible.

Imagine this. A loaf of French bread just came out of the oven with a crispy crust and a soft inside. You also pull out the bulb of garlic that was cooking along side with the warm bread. You cut out a piece, spread a clove of that roasted garlic, some butter to watch it malt into the bread, and sprinkle salt to enhance the flavor…. And ate the whole loaf.

I didn’t bake today to satisfy my craving because you know, work and responsibilities. But I did go to Pi, St. Louis deep dish pizzeria, and got me some garlic bread. It was so good! It was around $6.50, but my tummy needs it. It was garlic-y and buttery on some warm, toasty bread. Mmmmm… All in my belly. I would of taken some pictures for a post, but this is an absolute after thought.

Now, when I do have time and really want to make something, like an awesome cheesy garlic bread I follow this recipe. I don’t follow it to the ‘T’ and it was still good. I only like reading her recipes as printing them because her site is just so busy and slow from time to time. The link to her site is right below the link to print her cheesy garlic bread recipe if you want to see pictures of her steps. http://www.laurenslatest.com/hasselback-garlic-cheesy-bread/print

http://www.laurenslatest.com/hasselback-garlic-cheesy-bread/

What have you been craving for?

 

Posted in Down

Plain

I never have a lot to say. Communicating is painful and hard for me. It just is. Don’t ask why because I don’t have an answer. I hate not having answers. I feel like I’m stuck in a rut.

It’s 11:17pm and… well, it’s 11:17pm in St. Louis, MO. Nothing going on here. In this room. Just typing, typing, typing.

I might or might not have told myself to be more creative this year, so here I am… Writing… My worst enemy. I’m here. Staring at the blinking bar that magically more letters appear to make the words you read. Trying my darnest to write something cool.  AHHH! I did I pick writing!? Poo. I type like two letters per 30 seconds. Talking is not great either. *mumble, gumble*

In case you haven’t notice this is a venting post. Get all that grossness out to make some less gross… something… *sigh*

I have two unfinished posts, so I guess I can work on that. Hopefully I’ll post something tomorrow.

 

Posted in Slice of life

Almost lost my lunch

Today is Friday. It is a great day. Later on this lovely winter evening I’ll be joining some friends for grilled pizza and watch Kubo and the Two Strings. A clay nation movie that I’ve been wanting to see for a while. An art that took years to make. Anyway, what my coworkers were talking about this afternoon almost make this day not so good of a day. They were talking about popping zits. Giant zits.

Popping zits. I’m usually okay with talking about anything at any time from poop at lunch to sex positions at dinner but today really was not the day. I had a nice full tummy after consuming a sandwich and split pea soup in the cold February afternoon. I was happily starting back up work to finish the second half of the workload when my coworker asked, “Do you watch zit videos?” I was dumbfounded by the question, so I replied “What?” with a confused look. Then she explained… I regret deeply 1. Not having my earphones in like I’ve been doing for the past couple of days so I can’t really response to much because I can’t hear much. Podcasts are awesome. 2. WHY DID I ASK!? Curiosity really make the cat sick this time.

My supervisor chimed in as I took deep relaxing breaths to not lose my lunch at my desk as I slowly remember zit popping videos. I have only seen one such video a good long while ago on a show called Tosh.O where they gather clips on YouTube and talk about them.  I have that image forever in my brain after seeing it once. They were talking about it for a good half an hour in pretty detail description from the size of zit to the end result of a golf ball size hole in that back after popping it and looking up similar clips on their phones. Good thing they did not show me any. I’m pretty sure my face was getting pretty pale at that point. My coworker also share that she watches these clips almost nightly before bed because it’s just so satisfying to see a zit pop.

So what is your grossest discussion you have at work or with anyone? And what is your “unusual” ritual before bed?

Posted in Habits, Slice of life

That Late Night Snack

I rarely eat a thing after 9pm. I need sleep and a freshly filled stomach makes me want to run a marathon. At times after 9pm, if I’m hungry, I’ll probably drink some Ovaltine with some extra malt or milk. Or I’m really hungry, a slice of bread and some Ovaltine. I have a thing Ovaltine. I’m having some right now.

Tonight is a little different. I had some delicious Southern’s fried chicken at a friend’s house and craved for some more after driving home. Unfortunately, there’s no fired chicken at this time. The next best thing for me is some Red Hot Potato Riplets. Both are spicy that you want more of and delicious that you just cannot get enough of.

I remember last time I have such a late snack was in Freshman year of college. My new group of friends and I decided on late night to go on a McDonald’s trip. I got myself some hot fudge sundae that got me sick and one of my friends puking in her room later that night. Ah, good times.

I also remember way back when I was 10 in Los Angeles on a family trip. We just landed traveling from St. Louis to LA so we “gained” two hours. My family were hungry, so we went to a late night Cantonese restaurant at 10pm which was midnight for me. I was tired and hungry. Food was good, but it was hard to enjoy when you want sleep and you know need to not gorge yourself for sleep. I think I ended up having some warm milk before bed because I was having an upset stomach and no one have Tums.

What was your last late night snack? Was it a craving? What do you normally snack at night?

Posted in Slice of life

Dark Ages: No Connection

It’s been 8 days, 15 hours, 36 minutes, and 5 seconds. Still no connection. This is my tale.

My first day of work was like another beginning of a good book. Introduction to the main heroine, her homeland, her skills, and her trusty squad that helps her missions. Because tasks are not done by an individual but a nice cohort of people with unique skills. Anyway, I was taking a break and wanted to take a picture and show off my little desk when I notice that evil mark! That universal “No” symbol. That circle with a diagonal line through it. That should be for no smoking, drugs, and petting cat belly. That inviting warm, fluffy belly is a trap. My world was shaken to the core. Hark, how am I to like my Instagram pictures of goats and animals, how am I to get my lastest Buzz Feed news, and NO TEXTING! Oh, I’m gonna faint. Hold me, Fat Cat. And my battery was dying minute by minute as it tries over and over again to get that one bar! Whatever should I do?!

Called the IT. They are like Ghostbusters but cooler. After 40 minutes phone call and a half an hour in person visit, I just have to come to term that my phone just can’t connect in my office. My friends, you just have to pigeon mail me. *Sob* On the bright side, I have a job and I found a spot in the building that connects me to the outside today. I have that going for me. Yay!

Have you ever been disconnected from the outside? What did you do?

Posted in Slice of life

Five hundred twenty-five thousand Six hundred minutes

It’s Thanksgiving , everyone. (Well, it’s a day after. Close enough!) Here in the States, we use this time to stuff ourselves with turkey and American football. I also use this time with a belly full of Chinese dishes cooked by my relatives to list all the wonderful things in my life and plans for future to come!

Things I’m thankful for: Coffee, Chocolate, Desserts of all kinds, Mochi, Put chai ko, Dim sum, my coffee mugs, my French press, Technology, Modern medicine, Holistic medicine, and of course, people like family and friends. Oh, and my health. With all the sweet things that I put in my body, I hope that diabetes never get me. I don’t know what I would do if I can’t have a cupcake. Also, duck. It’s delicious.

Small plans for the near future: Check out Sump Coffee, Eat that turkey burger, Eat that brownie a la mode, Paint more paintings, Fix that closet, Try to sell some things, and Move into an apartment by myself.

Big plans for the near future: Visit Japan along with Deer island and Cat island, Have an Euro trip, Visit DC, Watch a Broadway musical in New York City, Have that chocolate buffet, Swim with dolphins, Swim with otters, and Visit Hawaii.

These help me to deal with other happenings that are not within my control. I’ll use this spark to motivate me to get up in the mornings or from a nap and do things. It’s the best I can do right now. These outside stresses like US election result and ongoing of Standing Rock for clean water are weighting down on me more than it should. How can we treat ourselves so badly? That person is a person like you. Hurtful words hurt. Violent actions also do them damage just like everyone else. Why are we attacking ourselves?

I want share some positives and I have this little jingle in my head. “Seasons of Love” is a great song. Individuals have one thing in common: love. Everyone has love to give and it’s worth fighting for. Why don’t we have this as a motivation for change? Love thy neighbor. Love is the best. Use love to take action.

What do you have on your lists? What other positive songs are out there to lift that human spirit?

 

 

Posted in Food

Rah rah ah-ah-ah Ramen

img_20161011_125733
Midtown Sushi’s Kimchi Ramen
20161022_182353
Midtown Sushi’s Hakata Ramen
img_20151204_184252
Robata’s Miso Tonkotsu

About three weeks ago, a friend of mine invited me to have lunch with him. He had a small cold, so we were planning on getting some soup and noodles. Fork and Stix was our first choice and one of our favorite places for soup and noodles. However, their soup is more heavy because of the coconut milk, it’s not ideal for a cold. And Robata is not open for lunch. *PANIC* We had a dilemma in our hands! Where in St. Louis are we going to find a good ramen at this time!? Then he remembered someone mentioned this place to him. Midtown Sushi & Ramen

The place is small but still have plenty of room to stretch your legs. Parking is street parking with meters. There’s hardly any pedestrians. Don’t go by yourself. Have a buddy or two when possible. Anyway, he had the Hakata Ramen and I had the Kimchi Ramen. Both ramen have the same kind of al dente Japanese curly noodles, pork belly, and this velvety broth that warms your heart and soul. The Kimchi makes the orange-y color you see in the picture. It was too spicy for me to handle the whole bowl. I had a half of the bowl. I tried his before he dug in and I liked it better. This is another reason for having a friend to go with. So you can try all things! I was already planning to come back before lunch was over. The next week I was back with my parents because I was having a craving. I ordered the Hakata this time and it tasted exactly the same as the previous week. So the consistency is there and it was so good! I still managed to eat only half of it. So filling! And I had a second meal out of it. Mom ordered and ate the whole Kimchi Ramen and Dad a Plain Ramen. They both like it and would love to come back soon. Dad is especially picky so for him to like it and want to come back is something.

Now I have mentioned Robata in the beginning. You might ask, “Well, how do these two compare?” My answer is Robata is more salty than Midtown Sushi’s, but still good. My preference is Midtown Sushi at the moment. However, Robata has that Japanese ambiance and a larger variety of dishes to try. Their curry fries are delicious!

There you have it. Come try them out and tell me what you think.

Posted in Family, Food

PorPor’s Fried Sweet Potato Mochi

I don’t know if this is a traditional Chinese snack, but it’s definitely a traditional family snack in my family.

My PorPor (Grandma in Cantonese) had passed away this past weekend in her sleep. She was 95 years young. She was a supportive wife, a loving mother, and a phenomenal cook. Seriously, no cooks like PorPor and she was an impossibly fast cook who cooks with her senses and follows no recipe. Having to raise ten kids you kinda of have to. Her dishes were discussion topics at the dinner table from time to time, but no one seems to know how to replicate them since no recipes were ever written down. Friends and family know my love of food in the dessert section, especially cakes and mochi. The mochi PorPor makes has a slight crunch on the outside with a soft and chewy inside. I have tried to learn from her, asked her to teach me so I can write it down, and she did, but with her being a fast-paced teacher and no measuring tools use. It was a failure. I had some idea of how to make the mochi, but it was soon forgotten. And PorPor’s Fried Sweet Potato Mochi was very much missed until now.

This recipe is my PorPor’s and now it’s written down and share with the world! I researched online to find the ingredients and their amounts and tested several times to come to this one. I think she would be proud. 🙂 There’s only five ingredients to this and makes so much!

Glutinous Rice Flour 1 Cup

Rice Flour 2 Cups

Sugar 1/2 Cup

Sweet Potato 2 Pounds

Some oil for pan frying

Please note that everyone’s stoves and pans are just different enough to adjust time and heat to cook these. Anyway, this is how she did it.

  1. Clean all potatoes, chop off the ends, and put them in the big pot of water to boil until cook. To check, if they are cooked, use a chopstick or a knife to poke the thickest part of the potato. If without effort, it’s done! If not, still need more time. Once done, drain and peel hot potatoes. They are hot, so be careful! (PorPor just used her hands. She told me she don’t think it’s hot. Potatoes were steaming. HOW’S THAT POSSIBLE!)
  2. Mash all potatoes and mix all ingredients in thoroughly. Scoop up dough, make into balls, and flatten it a little for faster cooking time.
  3. Heat up a pan with a nice flat surface with about a quarter inch of oil. Gently put in the flatten dough balls. Cook until the edge is almost done and flip to the other side. (I never timed this so you just have to watch it and check the bottom enough to make sure it’s not burnt.)
  4. Take them out to put on paper towel to soak up excess oil.
  5. Enjoy them!

This probably takes me two to three hours to make. These are so good! Totally worth it!

What’s your favorite family dish to make?

hk-stuff-026
DimSum with grandparents 2006
Posted in Food, Slice of life

My kind of Heaven!

I haven’t been in the best of moods these couple of days. To give myself a little of Jasmin’s time after work, I went to West County Mall just to walk around for some window shopping and that’s when I saw THIS MAGICAL PLACE!

20161025_151020

Lolli and Pops, a fancy chocolate and yummy candy shop, opened a week ago. It delights me such a place exists! I took pictures because I feel the need to share with the world. They have all kinds of candies like Marzipan that shapes like burgers, hot dogs, and fruits. 🙂 There are also ghostly truffles for the scariest holiday of the year!

As you walk further into the shop towards the golden bear, you’ll see… Some GIANT GUMMY BEARS! There are also Warheads. I haven’t seen those for ages. Didn’t know they still make them.

Another candy they have that I was surprised they have are these Kinder Eggs. I thought these were banned or something. I ate quite a bit of these when I was a kid. They have prizes in them. Nothing more awesome than being rewarded with stickers or temporary tattoos after eating some chocolate eggs. And they have this milk candy that I also consumed a lot when I was a kid. Ah, the nostalgia.

They also have some weird candies like Tabasco chocolate. Spicy chocolate is a bit odd. I did a bit more window shopping after this, but other stores didn’t make me smile like a kid than this one.

What makes your day delightful?

Posted in cooking, Food

Quiche!! On a budget.

I love quiche! It’s delicious flaky, buttery crust with cheese, eggy filling is a little piece of heaven to me. Finding a good quiche is hard to find. I used to go to a local chain cafe right here in St. Louis just for their personal quiches, but they soon changed to a crustless one that was just way too salty for my taste. I missed those little quiches that make me feel it is just for me. I found another place that make quiche but they are just not great. They have a soggy bottom because it’s been sitting for too long. So for a good while that seems like light years I was deprived of a good fresh quiche.

With the help of the Internet, I can now enjoy a nice quiche in the comfort of my home. I use this recipe from Once Upon a Chef. I actually substitute out the fancy Gruyere cheese ($11.99 at Trader Joe’s) with Kraft Shredded Italian Five Cheese Blend ($2.50 at Walmart). I also didn’t put in the salt, nutmeg, or cayenne pepper. The rest I followed and still turns out AMAZING! I also did this with swiss chard once and that was as good as spinach. Cut out, ribbon, and blanch the leaves. Remember to wrung out the water like the frozen spinach and you are good to go.

Try it out and tell me what you think! Is there a better quiche recipe out there? Let me know in the comments below.