Archives for Asian cooking 911 category

Japanese cooking: My mother’s Japanese style Carrot cake; Yassy’s Version Apple carrot cake with Brandy

 When Christmas season comes, it always remind me of my mother’s Christmas tradition;baking carrot cake.

One year, my mother baked carrot cakes for my father to bring it to his workplace to share for the holiday. Then, everyone loved it so much that she was reminded to bake carrot cakes every Christmas for them.

My father;’s workmates loved the cake very much.

Years ago, when I came over to the states, I asked my mother to hand me down the carrot cake recipe so I can make it at home here in the states. Therefore, I brought the recipe with me and now and then, I bake the cake.

Carrot cake and strawberry short cakes are two things that I found very very different visually and taste wise from what we know as “carrot cake” and “strawberry shortcake”.

The strawberry shortcake here in the states seems to be whipping cream is sandwiched with biscuits and topped it off with strawberry fruits and its syrup. I found it a bit heavy dessert compared to ours; light fluffy sponge cake is layered with thin layer of whipping cream and fresh strawberry slices in between and topped it off with whipping cream with fresh strawberries.

Since ours use a lot of fresh fruits in the cake and cream is not sticky sweet, it is really refreshing light desert to have.

Carrot cakes here seems to be much much  sweeter overall compared to ours.The frosting is so sweet and thick coated and ingredients used are quite different although some of the ingredients are the same.

I think the taste is a little different as well.

The biggest difference maybe would be that we do not have concept of frosting for the cakes and frosting is one of those things that I Learned how to make them after coming over to the states. Our carrot cake does not have any frosting on it.The taste is much lighter too.Here, I would like to share my mother’s famous carrot cake with you.

Also, my version of her carrot cake,which has brandy in it since I love using liqueur for the baking.

Yassys Apple Carrot Cake with brandy blog

Yassy’s Carrot Apple cake with brandy..

Ingredients for Yassy’s Apple Carrot cake with brandy:

5 oz carrot grated
1.3 oz Fuji Apple grated (peeled and cored)
1.3 oz Fuji Apple diced (peeled and cored)
6.15 oz Unbleached all purpose flour
4.25 oz white sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/3 tsp salt
a dash of vanilla extract
120 cc vegetable oil
1 tbs butter melted
2  egg
3 tbs brandy

<Yassy’s Apple carrot cake with brandy>

1. Grate carrot, 1.3 oz apple peeled and cored, and cut the 1.3 oz Apple cored and peeled into small dice

2. In a bowl, add 2 eggs, 120 cc vegetable oil, 1 tbs butter melted and 4.25 oz white sugar and a dash of vanilla extract and mix them well

3.To the other bowl, add 1 tsp baking powder, 1 tsp baking soda, 1 tsp ground cinnamon, 1/3 tsp salt through shifter

4. Add <3 to <2> little by little and stir well,and add the carrot and apple and mix

** Be careful not to over-mix the ingredients.

5.  Pour the batter into the muffin tin and drop the muffin tin pan to the counter from about 3″-4″ height to let the air out in the butter and bake them at 375F for about 23 minutes or so til toothpicks comes out clean when you poke through the cake

*** In the muffin tin cup, pour the batter to about 80%, and if there were any empty tin area, fill the tin area with bit of water so the cake can get a bit of “steaming” effect during the baking time

6 when the cake comes out, brush the cake with brandy and serve

Makes:10-12 cakes

** Microwave the cake after peeling off the tin cup for about 12 seconds to enjoy warm fluffy cake


My mother's Japanese style Carrot cake

 My mother’s carrot cake…

Ingredients for my mother’s carrot cake:

5 oz carrot grated
6 oz Unbleached all purpose flour
4.5 oz white sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/3 tsp salt
130cc vegetable oil
A dash of vanilla extract
2  egg

<My mother’s carrot cake>

1. Grate carrot in a container

2. In a bowl, add 2 eggs, 130cc vegetable oil, and 4.5 oz white sugar,vanilla extract and mix them well

3.To the other bowl, add 1 tsp baking powder, 1 tsp baking soda, 1 tsp ground cinnamon, 1/3 tsp salt through shifter

4. Add <3 to <2> little by little and stir well

** Be careful not to over-mix the ingredients.

5.  Pour the batter into the muffin tin and drop the muffin tin pan to the counter from about 3″-4″ height to let the air out in the butter bake them at 375F for about 23 minutes or so til toothpicks comes out clean when you poke through the cake

*** In the muffin tin cup, pour the batter to about 80%, and if there were any empty tin area, fill the tin area with bit of water so the cake can get a bit of “steaming” effect during the baking time

Makes: 12 cakes

** Microwave the cake after peeling off the tin cup for about 12 seconds to enjoy warm fluffy cake


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May 12, 2015 | 0 | Asian cooking 911

Japanese/Chinese cooking;Skinny Sweet Sour pork

I love sweet sour pork or sweet sour pork dish.

In Japanese, sweet sour pork is called “Su buta”. ” Su ” means vinegar. “buta” means “pork”. So, sweet sour pork literally means vinegary pork.

The dish “su-bu-ta” (Sweet sour pork” ) is traditionally made with pork shoulder,deep fried and they are coated with thicken sweet sour sauce. The dish got onion, pepper, carrot and pineapple.

I like su-bu-ta but I do not like sticky sweet sweet sour sauce you sometime find at American Chinese restaurants across the country and, when I make the dish, I make less sweet sauce and, I enjoy them a lot.

Chinese influenced Japanese dishes like this is a good dish that you can add in whatever vegetables on hand as well to make it extra nutritious. I like to add in non traditional ingredients from the fridge sometime.

This is the recipe you can cook up in 30 minutes and, perfect recipe for busy moms out there.

Since my version does not deep fry the meat, I just call it “Skinny Sweet sour pork”.

Skinny sweet sour pork blog

Skinny sweet sour pork….

Ingredients for the sauce;

* 1/5C rice vinegar
* 1.5 tsp white sugar
* 1 tbs Ketchup
* 1 tsp soy sauce
* 1/2 tsp corn starch
* 1/2 tsp sesame oil

1. Mix all ingredients in bowl and set it aside.

Ingredients for sweet sour pork;

10 oz wt pork shoulder boneless cut into bite size pieces
2 capful sake (I like to use Gekkeikan Sake brand)
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 sweet onion rough chopped
1 stick carrot thinly sliced diagonally
1/8 Green pepper rough chopped
1/8 Red pepper rough chopped
shanghai bok choy stem thinly sliced

1. Cut the boneless pork shoulder to about 1/2″ thick or so and pound them with back of the knife

2. Season it with Morton’s Natures Seasons

3. Put the pork into the small container and add 2 capful of sake, 1/4 tsp baking soda, and marinade 20-30 minutes to tender

4. Wash the pork meat under the cold running water to rinse off the marinade

5. In the skillet, drizzle sesame oil and bring the skillet to hot

6. When the skillet got screaming hot, add in pork shoulder meat and brown them

7. Add 1/2 onion rough chopped, carrot thinly sliced diagonally, and when they got cooked to about 80%, add in  1/8 Green pepper rough chopped, 1/8 Red pepper rough chopped, and sliced shanghai bok choy stem thinly sliced, add in 8 sugar snap pea and stir

** Season the vegetable with Morton’s Natures Seasons each time you add in new ingredients

8. Pour the sauce and stir to thicken

9. Enjoy!

Makes: 2-3 servings

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Mar 31, 2015 | 0 | Asian cooking 911

Chinese/American cooking;Sloppy Joe’s with plum sauce

 There are many things that I have tried for the first time here in the states.

One of them is “Soppy Joes”. I thought it was very easy to cook and quite flavorful and, I really liked it when I tried one.

Then, when we visited Chinese restaurant here in the states, there were “lettuce wrap” I had never had at Chinese restaurants in Japan.  I do not know if it is westernized Chinese food, but it was new concept to me.

Just recently, I was looking through our freezer, and I thought why not making Sloppy Joe with Asian twist.

Then I thought that using the Plum sauce,which often times served as dipping sauce for egg rolls, might be a good base in the sauce.

If you were not familiar with plum sauce, it is the sauce made from plum puree, ginger, sugar, and vinegar. Kind of like sweet sour sauce with plum flavor.

You can find them at the International foods aisle.

I was not sure how it would come out but I think it comes out nice. It goes well with burger bun but also, simply eating it with hot steamy Japanese rice or eat it as lettuce wraps works well.

It is a little different from traditional American style Sloppy Joe’s but we liked it.

In this entry, I would share the recipe of “Sloppy Joe’s with Plum sauce” with you. It got various veggies in it and I think, it is one way you can eat a lot of vegetable of.

Also, if you simply make sauce in the small sauce pan, and bring it to boil, then simmer, you can use the sauce to drizzle over grilled meat too.

Sloppy Joe’s with plum sauce

Ingredients for sloppy Joe;

10 oz ground beef (80-20)
1/8 sweet onion chopped
1/2 stalk of celery chopped
1/4 red pepper chopped
1 Roma Plum tomato seeded,chopped to 1/4″ dice
1/2 plum (purple) seeded and chopped to 1/4″ dice
Morton’s Natures Seasons
2 tsp chopped garlic chives

Ingredients for Plum sauce;

1/3C plum sauce
1 tbs rice vinegar
1 tsp sesame oil
1 tsp spicy bean sauce (available at International foods aisle) 

<Sloppy Joe>

1. In the skillet, add 80-20 ground beef 10 oz, and cook to almost brown

** Since ground beef got good amount of fat already, I do not add oil to cook with it.

2. Add 1/8 sweet onion chopped, 1/2 celery chopped and season it with Morton’s Natures Seasons

3. Add 1/4 red pepper chopped

4. Add 1 plum tomato seeded and diced to about 1/4″

5. Season it with Morton’s Natures Seasons

6. Add purple plum seeded,peeled,and chopped to 1/4″ dice

7.  When plum got soften, pour Plum sauce * (Recipe follows) and stir

8. Add 2 tsp of garlic chives

** You can find garlic chives at Asian store,but you can also swap it with chopped green onions

Serve over burger bun, over hot steamy rice, or serve as lettuce wrap filling

<Plum sauce>

1.  In the small container, add 1/3C plum sauce, 1 tbs rice vinegar, 1 tsp sesame oil, 1 tsp spicy bean sauce (available at International foods aisle)  and mix well

** If you cannot find spicy bean sauce, you can swap it with fresh thai chili or jalapeno, or sriracha , or sambal or kochujun or.. crushed red pepper etc.. Add small amount to adjust the heat level.

14. Enjoy!

Makes: 4-6 Sloppy Joe filling for burger

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Apr 27, 2014 | 0 | Asian cooking 911

Asian cooking:Slow cooker Beef short ribs with Asian style BBQ sauce

 These days, I noticed that the more people seem to have interests in cooking with the slow cooker. I find more segments featuring slow cooker recipes in the TV shows as well.

 Good thing about the slow cooker is that, it is a great time saver cooking tool especially for those who does not have much time to spend in the kitchen. Also, if you have a recipes that you normally use oven for braising the dish, you can also turn the recipe into slow cooker recipes to save the time in the kitchen.

 For a slow cooker, low setting is oven’s 200F, HI is about 300F and you can use that as a guideline for the recipe normally cooked in the oven for the time in the slow cooker.

 If you were in the hurry and you cannot wait for 8-9 hours, then, you can set the slow cooker at HI for half the time you normally do with low setting.
 One thing you should NOT do is to open the lid every so often to check the progress because every time you open the lid, the temperature in the slow cooker ges down and to bring back to the temperature it was before, it would take for about 30 minutes or so, which means, the more you lift the lid open, the longer it takes for the dinner to be done.

 In this entry, I would share the recipe of Beef short rib with Asian style BBQ sauce made in the slow cooker.

 You can certainly use pork country style ribs if you prefer but my husband prefer the beef short ribs over pork ribs so, I tend to use the beef short ribs more for the BBQ.

Slow cooker Beef short rib with Asian style BBQ sauce..

Ingredients for Slow cooker Beef short rib with Asian style BBQ sauce;

4 beef short ribs
1 cloves of garlic grated
C ketchup
1 C soy sauce
1C  Worcester sauce
1C  sake
kosher salt
ground black pepper
1/2 tsp fresh ground ginger
Extra virgin olive oil

Ingredients for Asian style BBQ sauce;

1 cloves of garlic grated
6 tbs ketchup
6 tbs  soy sauce
6 tbs  Worcester sauce
6 tbs  sake
6 tbs dark brown sugar
1/8 tsp fresh ground ginger

<Slow cooker Beef short rib with Asian style BBQ sauce>

1. Trim excess fat if any

2. Prick the rib with fork and rub it with pinch of kosher salt, pinch of ground black pepper, 1/2 tsp fresh ground ginger, 1 cloves of garlic grated, and let it sit for about 3-4 hours in the fridge.

3. Meanwhile, slice 1/2 sweet onion

4. Prepare the crockpot on counter top, and place the sweet onion on the bottom, and pour 1C ketchup, 1C sake, 1C soy sauce, 1C Worcester sauce

5. Take out the drained beef short ribs and sear the all side of the Beef short rib with screaming hot skillet drizzled with Extra virgin olive oil

6. place the seared Beef short ribs on top of the onions

7. Set the crockpot to “HIGH” and cook for 4-5 hours

Do not open lids often.Leave it alone.Keeping the lid on make the food
moist,and every time you open the lid, it looses the steam and also the
temperature would drops.

** If you do not have crockpot, you could use the Le creuset
(enameled cast iron cookware) and use the oven to cook the ribs.
Crockpot temperature “HIGH” is said to be around 300F with oven. So, you
could preheat the oven at about 300F-325F and check the ribs and adjust
the cooking time as you go.


While ribs are cooking, make the Asian style BBQ sauce in the sauce pan * (recipe follows)

9. Plate ribs on the plate (Take the bone off for easy eating), pour sauce
from the sauce pan over and done

<Asian style BBQ sauce>

1. In the sauce pan, add 6 tbs ketchup, 6 tbs Worcester sauce, 6 tbs dark brown sugar, 1 clove of garlic grated, 1/8 tsp fresh grated ginger and mix and cook till it gets thicken a bit

Makes: 2-4 servings

** If
you made more than you want, you can shred the ribs and add the sauce
to the shredded beef ribs and make the beef rib sandwich.

** You can also freeze the leftover beef ribs and use them in the fried rice recipe.

 On the day I made this, I have served with Smoked gouda mashed potato my husband loves.

 Here is how you make them.

Ingredients for smoked gouda mashed potato;

24 oz Yukon gold potato (About 4-5 potatoes)
2 tbs butter
1tbs sour cream
3/4C milk
3 oz shredded smoked gouda cheese
pinch of kosher salt
pinch of ground black pepper
1 tsp Italian flat leaf parsley *optional

<Smoked Gouda mashed potato>

1. Wash the 24 oz yukon gold potatoes, and wrap them
in plastic wrap and put it on microwaveable plate and cook them.

*** 1 potatoes
needs 3 minutes plus one minute.

 If you use 3 potatoes, 3 potatoes x 3
minutes+1 minutes=10 minutes. It depends on size of the potatoes
but,usually I use 3-5 medium size potatoes for 2 adult serving.

 It yield probably 3
adult serving worth, but my husband likes it so much that he eats it a
lot so,it is usually a good amount for us to make.

2. With oven mitten,grab the plate and toss the potatoes onto bowl, and carefully remove the plastic wrap

3. Peel off potato skin

*** I use chopstick to peel off the potato skin

4. To the hot steamy potatoes in the bowl, add 2 tbs butter, pinch of Kosher salt,pinch of ground black pepper, 1 tbs sour cream, and mash them

** Heat from the potato will help butter melt easily

** My choice of cheese is imported Smoked Gouda cheese from Holland.
American Gouda cheese lacks flavor a little compared to the one from
Holland. You can find the Smoked Gouda cheese at specialty cheese area
in local grocery store.

5.  Add about 3/4C milk,3 oz shredded smoked gouda cheese and

** Don’t over whip mashed potato. Over whipped mashed potato let more
starch out from potato and,it turns gloppy mashed potatoes.

6. Serve

Makes; 2-4 serving



Apr 20, 2014 | 0 | Asian cooking 911

Japanese/Chinese cooking: Sesame chicken with vegetables

 In the previous entry titled “Japanese/Chinese cooking: Balsamin Teriyaki Sesame chicken“, I have introduced you one version of sesame chicken that I make.

 Sesame chicken can be found at various restaurants in the states but, most of the time, it is simply the deep fried chicken with sauce on it and not many vegetables are in the dish.

 Therefore, when I make stir fry, I tend to pan fry the protein source (chicken,pork,beef etc..) and to that, I add whatever vegetables that I can find in the fridge and then add the sauce of favorite dishes such as Orange chicken, Sesame chicken, sweet sour sauce etc… and make the dish more nutrient packed and serve them to our family.

 I rarely do deep frying the meat because pan frying is more healthier, and it gives nice moist,tender meat you have ever eaten and you can cook the dish in no time.

 Stir fry dish is versatile dish and,you can enjoy it in many ways by simply switching the sauce to add on. They are especially great for those who are busy and cannot spend long time in the kitchen.

 Just recently, I made one other version of Sesame chicken by using Japanese and Chinese dish technique and I think it came out quite good and my husband gave me thumbs up so, I decided to share the recipe with you.

 There are list of vegetables I have used in the ingredient list but you can add in baby corn, water chestnut, beansprout etc too.

Sesame chicken with vegetables..

Ingredients for Sesame Chicken sauce;

1 tbs tomato paste
1 tbs Sake
tbs water
2 tbs soy sauce
1/8 tsp ground red cayenne pepper
3 tbs dark brown sugar
1/2 tbs corn starch

Ingredients for Sesame chicken;

2 chicken breast cutlet, cut to bite size pieces
1  chicken thigh cut to bite size pieces
1 tbs soy sauce
1/8 tsp fresh grated ginger
1.5 tbs corn starch
3 tbs unbleached all purpose flour
Extra virgin olive oil
sesame oil
1/4 sweet onion rough chopped
1 stick carrot diagonally thinly sliced
1/2 stick celery diagonally sliced
1/8 red pepper sliced
1/8 Green pepper sliced

Morton’s Natures Seasons
3 baby bokchoy leaf; stem part sliced thin, leaf part rough chopped
10 snow peas, string removed
Toasted sesame seed, grind fresh over the plate

<Sesame chicken sauce>

 1. In the small container, add 1 tbs tomato paste, 1 tbs Sake, 1
tbs water, 2 tbs soy sauce, 1/8 tsp ground red cayenne pepper, 3tbs dark brown sugar,
and 1/2 tbs corn starch and stir and set it aside

<Sesame chicken>

1. Cut 2 boneless chicken breast cutlet and 1 boneless chicken though into small bite size, and put them into a small bowl

2. Add 1 tbs soy sauce, 1/8 tsp freshly grated ginger to the chicken pieces in the bowl and stir

3. Let the chicken marinade at least 20 minutes

4. Add 1.5 tbs Corn starch,3 tbs unbleached all purpose flour to the marinaded chicken and mix well.

5. Heat the skillet, drizzle Extra virgin olive oil and cook the marinaded chicken

** Once you put the marinaded chicken into single layer in the skillet,do not touch to make the chicken nice sear

** When you shake the skillet and chicken got released, it is time to be flipped to cook the other side

6. Once chicken is cooked through, take them out, set them aside in the small plate

7. Add drizzle extra virgin olive oil and add 1/4 sweet onion rough chopped, 1 stick
carrot diagonally thinly sliced, 1/2 celery stick diagonally sliced and season it with Morton’s Natures Season and stir, cook a bit till it gets softer

8. Add 3 baby bokchoy stem part thinly sliced, 1/8 red pepper sliced, 1/8 green pepper sliced,
and 10 snow peas string removed, and season the vegetable with Morton’s Nature’s Seasons,and cook the
vegetable to about done

9. Add baby bokchoy leaf part, rough chopped,and cooked chicken back in the skillet, and pour the prepared sauce over the dish and stir to thicken

10. Adjust the seasoning if needed

11. Turn off the heat when sauce got almost absorbed, but it got some small amount of sauce on the bottom

12. Drizzle dash of sesame oil over the dish and stir

13. Plate them up, and sprinkle ground toasted sesame seed over the plate and serve it with hot steamy white rice

14. Enjoy!

Makes: 3-4 servings

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Apr 13, 2014 | 0 | Asian cooking 911

Japanese cooking;Ebi pilaf (shrimp pilaf)

 What is your favorite dish you have to have them once in a while?

 For me, since I grew up in Japan,where diet is based around rice along with several side dishes, I crave for rice when I do not get to eat rice for a long time.

 I like all kinds of rice dish but, one of my favorite rice dish is pilaf.

 It is one pot dish and you get to add variety of protein source, variety of vegetables and you can be creative about what kinds of pilaf you will be making.

 As a kid, my favorite pilaf was shrimp pilaf my mother made often. I just loved the plump crispy bite of the shrimp very much.

 In Japan, for the convenience,k you can buy a package of shrimp pilaf in the frozen food section but nothing bets the freshly made shrimp pilaf at home.

 My Pilaf does not use a lot of butter, and it is less greasier pilaf than you would get from some restaurants.

 Now and then,I make shrimp pilaf, and we all love them, and I thought I would share the recipe with you.

Shrimp pilaf…

 Ingredients for the Shrimp Pilaf;

1C Jasmine rice (Recommends Dynasty Jasmine rice)
5 marinaded shrimp chopped to 1″ chunks (Marinade recipe follows)
1.5 tbs butter plus 1 tbs for the finishing
1/2 sweet onion chopped
1/8 red green
pepper chopped
1/8 green pepper chopped
1/8C canned whole kernel corn

1 3/4C chicken broth
Natures Seasons
Green onion chopped

<How to make tender shrimp>

1. In the small container, mix 1/4 tsp Kosher salt, 1 tbs corn starch, 1 tsp sake, 1/4tsp Baking soda,3 tbs water well.

2. Add peeled,deveined shrimp and stir and put the lid on and keep in the fridge for 4-6 hours

3. Rinse the shrimp well under cold running water and pat them dry with
paper towel and follow the recipe. To cook the marinaded shrimp, it is
best to cook on the  hot skillet and be careful not to overcook them.

** I usually make this marinade for 10 count of medium size shrimp.

** You can use this marinade for scallop as well to make them tender.

<Shrimp pilaf>

0. Marinade shrimp,chop the shrimp into 1″ chunks

1. In the sauce pan, add 1.5 tbs butter, and when it gets bubbly, add v1/2 sweet onion chopped, 1/8 red green pepper chopped, 1/8 green pepper chopped, 1/8C canned whole kernel corn, and 1C Jasmine rice and stir

2. When the rice center got translucent in color, add, 1 3/4C chicken broth and stir

3. Cover the lid, cook the rice at medium low heat for 10 minutes

4. When 10 minutes passed, lower the heat to simmer,cook another 5 minutes

5. Add chopped shrimp pieces on top of the rice,cover the lid, cook for 5 minutes longer,and shrimp cooks through

6. When time is up, sprinkle a little bit of Natures Seasons over rice and shrimp and stir

7.  Sprinkle chopped green onion, add 1 tbs butter and stir to melt

8. Serve

Makes;3-4 serving


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Mar 16, 2014 | 0 | Asian cooking 911

Chinese cooking:Orange Chicken with vegetables II

 My husband loves Chinese food.One of the dishes he likes is Orange Chicken.

 Chinese food is very familiar with me and I like Chinese food as well.

 However, many popular Chinese dishes here are sometimes I had never seen back home in Japan even though in our country “Japan”, there are many Chinese restaurants that got Chinese chefs for the Authentic Chinese dish.

 Orange chicken is one of them. I had never had it before. I like it, but my small complain is that when you order Orange chicken, often times, the dish is simply piled up bite sized chicken pieces that are
deep fried and covered with orange flavored sauce, and no vegetable.

 It is
tasty, but it is on greasy side, and I do not get to eat variety of vegetables.

 If wok is used, I would imagine chef
may use more than 1 tbs -2 tbs of oil. When I cook, usually dish is made
with 1 tbs or 2 tbs of oil and not more, except occasional deep fried

 I like orange chicken dish, and I wanted to make them at home, but
wanted it to be  more healthier, with vegetable in it.

 This is my second version of orange chicken. I think it got very orange flavor and good amount of kick to it.

Orange chicken with vegetables..

Ingredients for Orange chicken sauce;

2 cloves of garlic chopped fine
1/2 tsp grated ginger
1 tbs tomato paste
1/2 tsp Sriracha
2 tsp
soy sauce
2 tbs orange marmalade with rind
6 tbs orange concentrate
tsp white sugar

Ingredients for Orange chicken;

Chicken tender 4 oz cut into bite size pieces
Chicken thigh cutlet 4 oz  into
bite size pieces
Morton’s Natures Seasons
1/8C corn starch
1/8C unbleached all purpose flour
Extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp sake
1/4 Red
pepper rough chopped
1/4 Green pepper rough chopped
1/4 sweet onion
rough chopped
1/2 stick of celery sliced diagonally
1/4 stick cut
1.5 tsp Cognac (brandy)
Green onions chopped (garnish)

<Orange Chicken sauce>

 1. In the small sauce pan, drizzle extra virgin olive oil, 2 cloves of garlic chopped fine, 1/2 tsp grated ginger and stir

2. When it got fragrant, add 1 tbs tomato paste, 1/2 tsp Sriracha, 2 tsp soy sauce, 2 tbs orange marmalade with rind, 6 tbs orange concentrate, 1 tsp white sugar and let it come to boil,lower the heat and let it thicken a bit and off the heat and set it aside

<Orange chicken>

1. Cut chicken tender 4 oz, chicken thigh cutlet 4 oz  into
bite size pieces, and season it with Morton’s Natures Seasons

2. In the small bowl, add 1/8C corn starch,1/8C unbleached all purpose flour and mix well

3. add cut-up chicken onto the flour-corn starch mixture and cost the chicken well

4. In the skillet, add extra virgin olive oil and let it come to hot enough for you to see the steam coming off from the pan

5. Shake off the excess flour -corn starch mixture and put the coated chicken pieces onto the hot skillet and let it brown both sides

6. When chicken got cooked through and well browned, add 1 tsp sake and shake the skillet to move it around

7. When sake got evaporated, take out the chicken pieces and set it aside

8. In the same skillet, add extra virgin olive oil and add vegetables ; 1/4 Red pepper rough chopped, 1/4 Green pepper rough chopped,1/4 sweet onion rough chopped, 1/2 stick of celery sliced diagonally, 1/4 stick cut diagonally and season it with Morton’s Natures Seasons

9. When vegetables are cooked through, put the chicken back into the pan and add 1.5 tsp Cognac (brandy) and shake the pan and stir

10. When Cognac got evaporated well, pour the Orange chicken sauce over and stir

11. plate it up and garnish with chopped green onions


Makes:2-3 servings

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Feb 02, 2014 | 0 | Asian cooking 911

Japanese cooking:Coffee Milk Steamed bread

 In the previous entry titled “Japanese/Chinese cooking:Buta Man (Steamed bun with pork meat filling“, I wrote that in Japan, you would find various types of steamed buns such as “karee man” (steamed bun filled with curry flavored meat with vegetable,dough is yellow color), “Niku man
” (steamed bun filled with meat usually ground pork filling), “An man”
(steamed bun filled with sweet Azuki beans paste).

 You can usually find
them being sold hot at convenience stores after September through winter
in Japan. Other seasons, you can buy those at frozen section, and all
you need to do is to steam them for about 15 minutes or so on stove top.

 You can find savory/dessert type of steamed buns like that but also, you can find various kinds of steamed bread there.In Japan, steamed bread is called “Mu-shi Pa-n”.

 Steamed matcha green tea bread, steamed cheese bread, and also, making steamed bread using pancake mix with raisins or vegetable such as Japanese sweet potatoes are also popular among many families.

 When I was a kid, 3pm was we kid’s snack time and often times, my mother made homemade snack for me and my sister. Steamed bread was one of those things my mother has made for us long,long,long time ago.

 Sometimes, she made different things like deep frying the ears of bread chopped into about 3″ long or so and sprinkled with white sugar over it. Sometimes, she made homemade donut.. Everything she made with or without us was delicious.

 I love steamed bread and, even though I live in the states, now and then, I make my own version of steamed bread.

 This Coffee Milk steamed bread is one of those I made before and it came out delicious and, I thought I would share the recipe with you.

 This is one easy to make homemade snack for your family.

Coffee Milk Steamed bread..

Ingredients for Coffee Milk Steamed bread

1.5 C Unbleached all purpose flour
2.5 tbs white sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt

1 tbs kahula (coffee liqueur)
1 tbs espresso powder

150 ml plus 2 tbs milk
1 tbs vegetable oil
1 egg
1/2 tsp vanilla extract

<Coffee Milk Steamed bread>

1. In the wide mouth pan, pour about 1″ or so of water,and place vegetable steamer and set the steamer to steam the bread

** One way you can steam stuff is to use wok with bamboo steamer but you can steam stuff other way

 The way my mother and I steam stuff is to use big pan and vegetable steamer and one kitchen towel.

This is how I set up to steam..

** The pan in the picture is 11″ and I pour water in the
bottom and place the vegetable steamer and steamer’s bottom part is set.

 Make sure that water depth is just enough to touch the vegetable
steamer and you should not feel the water puddle above the vegetable

2. Set the stove on to medium heat and let the water come to boil

3. While waiting for it to come to boil,prepare the batter

4. In the bowl, add 1.5 C Unbleached all purpose flour, 2.5 tbs white sugar,1 tsp baking powder, 1/4 tsp salt and stir

5. In another bowl, mix 1 tbs espresso powder, 1 tbs Kahula (coffee liqueur), 150 ml plus 2 tbs milk, 1 tbs vegetable oil, 1 egg, 1/2 tsp vanilla extract and mix well to dissolve

6. To the bowl with espresso powder mixture, add flour mixture a little at a time,and gently stir to combine

7. In the muffin tin cup, pour the batter to about 80%, and place them carefully on top of the vegetable steamer in the big pan

Placing the filled muffin tin cup on the steamer..

8. Before putting the lid on directly,cover the lid with kitchen towel in between. Edge of the towel
should be fold back like the picture below.

 Kitchen towel helps suck up
the steam and it prevents steam going back down to the bread. If there
were no towels used, steam drops to bread and you will get soggy bread.

** With bamboo steamer, you do not need towel to prevent steam dropping to the bread because bamboo suck the steam

8. Steam the bread for about 17 minutes or until tooth picks comes out clean

Makes:6 steamed bread



Jan 19, 2014 | 0 | Asian cooking 911

Japanese cooking:Pudding Japanese style (Pu-ri-n)

 When you hear “pudding”, what you would imagine would be a little thicker texture of custard cream eaten as dessert here in the states.

 Back home in Japan, “pudding” is what you call “flan” plus caramel sauce on top or ” creme brulee” minus burnt sugar on top and instead,you will have caramel sauce on top.We call the dessert “pu-ri-n”. They are firmer in texture compared to “pudding” here in the states.

 It is often served cold with dab of whipped cream with maraschino cherry on top,and it is kids’ favorite dessert in Japan.

 In fact, I still remember that my mother made piggy shaped “pu-ri-n” for my bento box (lunch box) when I was elementary school and, I really liked the surprise when I opened up my bento box

 The pu-ri-n is so popular that you can find instant pu-ri-n mix in powder form in Japan. What you all need to do is to add milk, mix, and chill and does not require a little technical water bath step.

 The powder form pu-ri-n has gelatin in it and it is what firm the pu-ri-n. Therefore, taste-wise, the ones made from scratch and instant one has a little different taste.

 The one made from scratch has more custard flavor/eggy taste than instant ones.

 It is possible that you might be able to find the “pu-ri-n” mix at the Asian stores in the states if you like to try and see what it tastes like. I think I have seen commercially made pu-ri-n sold at the Asian store as well in the refrigerated section.

 Making the pu-ri-n is easier than you think. All you need is egg,milk and sugar. 3 ingredients! You would probably already have everything at home.

 In this entry, I thought I would share the recipe of Japanese style pudding with caramel sauce.

 Japanese style pudding (Pu-ri-n)..

Ingredients for pudding;

2 eggs
3 tbs white sugar
1C milk

Ingredients for caramel sauce:

3 tbs white sugar
2tsp water
4tsp hot water

<custard pudding Japanese style>

1. In the large bowl, crack 2 eggs and add 3 tbs white sugar to it and whisk til egg mixture turn a little pale yellow and you see a little bubbles on top

2. Add 1C milk to the egg mixture and mix well,and strain the egg-milk-sugar mixture through kitchen sieve to big measuring cup

3. In the wide mouth pan, pour the water about 1″ or you can measure the water amount by putting one empty ramekin in the pan and pour the water till water line comes to about 2/3 of ramekin height

4. Let the water come to boil, and turn the heat off

5. Put the empty ramekin in the pan, using the big measuring cup, pour the egg-milk-sugar mixture into 2 ramekin

6. cover the sauce pan with clean cloth to avoid any accumulated water drops onto the ramekin

7. Put the lid on and fold over the 4 corners so the edge of cloth would not hanging down from sauce pan top

8. Put the heat back on “medium low heat” and cook them about 20 minutes

9. Turn the heat off and wait about 10 minutes and finally, if it wiggles but was set firm enough, remove the pudding out from the pan to cool

10. Meanwhile, you would want to start making your caramel sauce (Recipe follows)

11. Pour the caramel sauce on top of pudding

12. Chill in the fridge, and serve

Makes: 2 puddings

<Caramel sauce>

1. In the sauce pan, add 3 tbs white sugar, 2 tsp water and stir to combine on cool stove top

2. Put the pan on the medium high heat


3. As time passes by, you will see the bubbles and it starts changing its color

** Once it starts changing its color, it goes quick. DO NOT leave the pan alone.

4. When you start smelling a little burnt caramel smell and see the big bubbles are seen in the sauce pan, turn the heat to simmer and take the pan off the heat and put the sauce pan back on and off until desirable color of caramel sauce

5. As soon as you see the desirable color of caramel sauce, add 4 tsp hot water to the pan and stir and pour it over the pudding

** When you add hot water to the caramel sauce in the pan, it spatter. Very careful.

Makes: 1-2 ramekin worth caramel sauce



Dec 01, 2013 | 0 | Asian cooking 911

Japanese/Chinese cooking: Sesame beef

 Every time we go back to Japan, our family eat out at Chinese restaurant near our parents house. They serve very tasty Chinese dish.

Often times, Chin-jao rosu ( Pepper steak) is my husband’s all time favorite and you will see it on our table.

 In the previous entry titled “Japanese/Chinese cooking:Chin-jao rosu (Pepper steak)“, I showed you how to make Chin-jao rosu (Pepper steak), and it has been one of our popular recipes viewed.

 Therefore, I thought I would share the another “Chin-jao rosu” recipe like with you.

 This dish is cross between chin-jao rosu (pepper steak) and teriyaki/sesame beef.It starts with marinading the thinly sliced beef steak. Since it has good sesame flavor,I will call it “sesame beef”.

 If you have BBQ, you could marinade the whole steak in the marinade and make the sauce in the pan and serve it as “dip sauce” along with grilled beef thinly sliced.

 Certainly you can swap beef with other protein source or use whatever you have in the fridge. This dish can be versatile that way, and pair the sauce with what you have already.

Sesame beef

Sesame beef..

** One thing I learned from my mother is that if you marinade sliced beef in mixture of 1tbs of soy sauce, 1 tbs of sake, 1 tbs of corn starch,and 1/24tsp baking soda for about 20 minutes, beef in the marinade becomes very very

Also, using grated onion or grated apple along with soy sauce also makes meat tender.

Ingredients for marinade;

1/8 apple grated
2 cloves garlic grated
1/2″ ginger piece grated
1/3C Sake
1/3C soy sauce

Ingredients for Sesame beef;

1/2 lb Rib eye steak sliced and pound thin
1/2 tbs sesame oil plus drizzle as finishing touch to the dish
1/4 green bell pepper thin sliced
1/8 red bell pepper thin sliced
1/4 cubanelle pepper thin sliced
1/2 sweet onion thin sliced
1 carrot cut to sticks
handful Snow peas ends trimmed,string removed
1-2 stalks of Green onion rough chop to about 2″-3″ per piece
1 cloves garlic grated
ginger grated

Ingredients for Sesame beef sauce:

1/3C  soy sauce
1 tbs white table sugar
2 tbs water
1/3C  sake

Ingredients for cornstarch slurry:

1 tsp Corn starch
1 tbs water

1. In the small bowl, mix 1/8 apple grated,2 cloves garlic grated,1/2″ ginger piece grated,1/3C Sake,1/3C soy sauce and make marinade for the beef

2. Slice 1/2 lb Rib eye steak to about 1/4″ and pound thin,and pound the beef with meat mallet,and then with back of the knife, pound the beef more to tenderize them

3. Slice beef to bite size piece and put them into the marinade bowl,mix beef with marinade well and let it sit for 20 minutes

4. Place a skillet on stove top, set it with medium heat,and add 1/2 tbs of sesame oil to skillet

5. While skillet is warming up, prepare the vegetable.

6. Slice 1/4 green bell pepper thin, 1/8 red bell pepper thin,and 1 carrot thinly cut to sticks, handful of snow peas ends trimmed and string removed,1/2 sweet onion thin,cut 2-3 stalks of green onion rough chop to about 2″-3″ pieces.

** My husband loves cubanelle pepper (Italian sweet pepper) and, I used it in the dish and it came out very good.

7. When skillet is warmed up, bring the heat up to medium high heat and,add 1clove of garlic grated, small ginger grated and stir well,and wait till it gets fragrant.

8. To another small bowl, add following ingredients and mix well

* 1/3C  soy sauce,1 tbs white table sugar,2 tbs water,1/3C  sake

9. To the skillet,add marinaded sliced beef, and when beef is turning half way through to cook through, add 1/2 sliced sweet onion, and carrots cut to sticks and stir

10. When Onion gets translucent,add 1/4 green bell pepper sliced, 1/8 red bell pepper sliced,and 1/8 Cubanelle pepper sliced,and snow peas and mix well

** I like to add peppers close to the end to retain color of the  pepper

11. When everything is close to cooked through, add rough chopped green onion, let it cook for another minute or two, and pour the sauce you prepared at step 8, and stir well.

12. In a small cup, add 1 tsp corn starch,and 1 tbs water, and mix well.

13. To the skillet, add the cornstarch slurry to thicken the sauce,and stir

14.When sauce got thicken up, drizzle touch of sesame oil and plate it up and grate toasted sesame seed over the dish.

Makes; 3-4 servings

 If you serve this dish over hot steamy rice, you can make it as one pot dish. I like Kokuho Rose rice, and it is very similar taste to Japanese rice I am familiar with.

 If you did not have beef steak on hand,you can also make with another meat such as pork,chicken etc.

Bon appetit!


Aug 18, 2013 | 0 | Asian cooking 911