Sunday, January 27, 2008

Weekend Cookfest

I finally got a chance to do some cooking aside from my busy schedule. I'm very pleased that I got the chance. Both of these recipes are quick, easy, and filling!

Pasta with Walnut Sauce Original recipe by Nigella Lawson

I used Nigellas recipe but used 8 oz walnuts (and forgot you only add 5 of the 6 oz in the origional recipe anyway) and so ended up having to change the recipe matter what you are definitely going to have more milk, butter, oil, whatever as this sauce will more likely than not come out thick.

  • 8 oz walnuts (save some for garnish..if you want)
  • 1 slice bread crusts removed
  • 1 tsp garlic paste (or minced garlic)
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese
  • 4 TBS olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste (don't skimp on the pepper)
  • pasta (flat and short is best, I used what I had)
  • parsley

Toast walnuts in a dry skillet. Mix first five ingredients together and slowly drizzle in olive oil. Add spices as desired (I would go heavy on pepper and not skimp on the salt as the sauce will be too bland other wise). Cook pasta according to directions and eat with sauce and parsley and Parmesan if desired.

For a more accurate recipe (and smaller serving):,,FOOD_9936_35389,00.html

I made enchiladas as well and those were great. I, being the unpredictable person I am decided to go for green sauce instead of the regular red. I followed the recipe on the back of the sauce can (oh how taboo! What do you expect? I said quick and easy not from scratch!) Enchiladas have many different construction methods and I'm not here to debate on correct enchilada etiquette but I went about it as such.

  • Fry tortillas in minimal amount of oil (not deep fry but pan fry).
  • Continue this proccess as chicken in cooking in oven.
  • Once i'm done with the tortillas fry up the now shreaded or cut up chicken in a "pat" of butter.
  • Put a little bit of chicken in each tortilla and roll up.
  • Place your free form "burritos" in baking dish and cover with enchilada sauce.
  • Sprinkle cheese (I used pepper jack) on top and bake in oven (350) for 10 minutes or until cheese is melted and sauce is warm.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Junior Hell

I haven't had a real meal in weeks. Tis the life of a junior. My creative juices are overflowing and I don't have time to mop up the mess. It hurts to not cook, it really does, do you know how much the lavender stand in the mall, and the indian market down the street have been calling me? Why am I even writing this? Got to go write a 3 papge paper on salt...and ice.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Orange Chocolate, a delicious combination

So I tried my hand at "curd cake" again and this time was satisfied with the results. I found my excuse to try again when my friend’s birthday arrived and I felt obligated to make her some form of cake. I love the chocolate orange combination and this cake is so light and airy from the whipped egg whites. It’s wonderful!

Chocolate Orange Curd Cake (Based of Alton browns orange curd recipe and from Emily Luchetti's recipe from her Four-Star Desserts cookbook)

· Orange curd (below)
· 2 cups chocolate cake mix (German chocolate is my preference)
· 6 egg whites

Orange Curd by Alton Brown

5 egg yolks
1 cup sugar
1/3 cup orange juice from 1 fresh squeezed orange (add water or additional OJ if short of a 1/3 cup)
1 Tablespoon orange zest, from the orange, do not forget this!
1 stick butter

whisk eggs and sugar together for at least 4 minutes, combine juice and zest and then whisk in to egg/sugar mixture, over a double boiler whisk the mixture for 8-12 minutes, when thickened remove from heat and add butter a tablespoon at a time, and finally chill for 4 hours before serving. This keeps for 2 weeks in the fridge.

Preheat oven to 325F. Butter and flour a 9-inch round x 3-inch high cake pan.Mix curd with 2 cups Betty Crocker (or other brand) German Chocolate cake mix.
Using the whisk attachment, in the bowl of a stand mixer beat the 6 egg whites on medium speed until frothy. Increase speed to high and gradually add the 1 1/2 cup sugar. Whip until soft peaks form. Gently fold the whipped egg whites into batter. Spread batter into you prepared cake pan. Tap pan to remove bubbles from batter. Let sit five minutes and tap again. Bake at 325F until cake tester comes out clean, about 45-55 minutes. Cool on rack and then remove cake from pan.Dust with 1 tablespoon powdered sugar or frosting if desired.

If you think that using store bought/pre made cake mix is taboo then check out this other recipe!

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Oh Bento!


I have been completely overwhelmed by my abundance and busy schedule. I should be GRATEFUL that while so busy, do to upcoming semester exams for junior year, I don't have to worry about food. But no, I get MAD at my parents because I am trying to get some cooking in and they are bringing home Thai and Mexican takeout. What can I say "I don't want the sukiyaki beef to go bad!" too late...I have some bentos that I have been lazy and haven't told you about yet. For relatively good reason, first off, If I don't like the food I cook then you definitely aren't going to like it.

That's why I'm initiating a rating system where I will "grade my performance". From now on My creations' will get a score out of 5 stars...or ice cream cones (whatever I feel like). Almost a disclaimer, but not. The recipes will be revised though so they should be better then the original rating/recipe. I should also probably start pre-writing my posts on Microsoft Word first, as it automatically corrects all the misspelled words (I have to use spell check every other sentence).

Back to the bento. This was my favorite bento of recent as it was deliciously India inspired. What you are seeing is rice covered by two wonderfully spicy coconut and mango chutneys. I give this recipe Five Stars! Whoot!

Mango and Coconut Chutney Bento
By Me! Inspired by.... other recipes. Alton browns chutney + thai mango salsa recipe=My recipe!

Ingredients; For mango chutney
1/2 diced red onion
2 tablespoons of Sriracha chili sauce
2 Mangos cubed 1/2"
teaspoon ginger (I use paste)
1 oz cider vinigar
1/2-3/4 cup cubed pinnaple
Optional: garlic
salt to taste

Saute the red onions in a tablespoon canola oil and a teaspoon of salt until soft and fragrant, mix the rest of the ingredients together and add cooked onion.

Coconut Chutney was a mix of like five obscure Internet recipes

1/4 tsp dried chili flake (more to taste if desired)
1/2-1 teaspoon curry powder
salt to taste
1/4 tsp mustard
1 tsp ginger (paste)
1 1/2 cup shredded coconut
Small can 14 oz/1 cup Beans or(use what you prefer..I used kidney because...well I wanted too, traditional Indian lentil's are also good choice)
1-1/2 cup frozen peas

Heat the oil and start cooking the spices, take off the heat add mustard and ginger and mix, immediately add the coconut and mix the "spiced"oil throughout. The coconut should turn yellow, from the curry poweder. Prep the beans/lentils and peas (cook and drain) and mix with the coconut.