Thursday, May 23, 2013

Stir Fried Shrimp, Beef, and Korean Cabbage...

Stir Fried Shrimp, Beef, and Korean Cabbage...
I did not follow any recipe for this. I learned that after cooking for 4 months, sometimes, I just make up any food according to what I have left in the refrigerator. I will give an estimate of what I did earlier today. Please adjust according to your taste after experimenting this dish. :)
1/2 korean cabbage (chopped thinly)
1 lb shrimp (peeled, divined)
1 lb beef
white pepper
3 tbspn fish sauce
4 cloves garlic (minced)
Using a big pan, heat up med to high, and add in oil. Then, put in the garlic. Stir fry the beef and shrimp. Add in the fish sauce and some white pepper according to your preference. Cook until almost cooked. Pour out onto a plate.
There should be some sauce leftover from the meat and shrimp. Using the sauce, add in the cabbage. Stir fry a bit and then cover with a lid to soften the cabbage. Now, add in the meat and shrimp. It should be done pretty quick after adding everything together.
Enjoy! :)

Xoi Lap Xuong, Tom Kho, va Cha Bong... (Savory Sticky Rice)

Xoi Lap Xuong, Tom Kho, va Cha Bong... (Savory Sticky Rice)
For this recipe, I asked how my mom, friend, and sister in law made it. Then, I used their ideas and tried to experiment it base on my estimate of how much I need to make for a big family. It's not perfect but not bad at all. Like I say, I'm still learning how to cook. I'm not a professional chef yet. I just try my best and when you guys ask for the recipe, I tell you what I did and you can go on from there. Adjust it according to your taste okay.   :)
1 pack of chinese sausage (I used Mai Que Lo; cut thin and diagonal)
1 small bowl of dried shrimps
Crushed dry pork meat
4 cups of sweet glutinous rice
1 container of chicken broth
5 Green onions (minced)
4 tbspn oil
1 tbspn Soy sauce
Rinse the sweet rice and soak for 15 min. Rinse the dried shrimps and soak with just a bit of water right above it for 30 min. While waiting, prepare a small pan with med to high heat of oil and stir fry half of the minced onions in it. Add just a pinch of salt to have some salty flavor. Leave to the side.
Now, rinse the sausage and cut it thin and diagonally. Drain the dried shrimps.
Drain out the water in the rice. Using a rice cooker, add the sweet rice to it. Then, add chicken broth to the same level as the sweet rice. Earlier I added a little bit above, according to what my mom told me, and my sweet rice was a little soggy. Cook it. Hopefully your will be better than mine. Please let me know how it comes out.
Now, heat up a big pan with med to high heat. Add in the sausage. Stir fry a bit so that the oil in it comes out a bit. Then, add in the leftover onions and dried shrimps. Sauteed all with soy sauce.
When the rice is cooked, as desired, add it to your bowl or plate. Flatten down evenly with a spatula. Start the first layer with the crushed dried pork meat. Then, spread out the sauteed shrimp and sausage on top. Finally, add the onion sauce on top.
Enjoy! Hopefully, it's not too bad! It's my 1st time making this so give me some opinions.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Soup Man Cua (Vietnamese Asparagus and Crab Soup)

Soup Man Cua (Vietnamese Asparagus and Crab Soup)
This is one of my favorite soups I like to eat at weddings and Vietnamese parties (birthdays or holidays). I learned this recipe from my mom. Now, I can be able to cook this for my children’s birthday parties. J
4 cartons of chicken broth 32 oz each
Green onions, minced
Garlic, minced
4 big cans of white peeled asparagus (slice diagonally)
2 small cans of white thin mushrooms
4 small cans of quail eggs
2 tbspn fish sauce
White pepper
Cilantro, finely chopped
1 container of fresh lump crab meat
2 eggs
2 tbsp cornstarch

Boil with med to high heat a big pot of chicken broth. While broth is cooking, stir fry crab meat with a little bit of oil and garlic for 1 min (My mom told me it’s a method of getting rid of the fishy smell in the soup).
When broth is boiled, add in the eggs, mushrooms, asparagus, and crab meat. Lower the heat down to low to med.
Crack the 2 eggs and put it in a separate bowl. Stir until smooth. Then, add into the pot of soup and stir evenly.
With another bowl, add the cornstarch and some water in and stir evenly. Then, add to the pot of soup. Adjust according to thickness however you prefer.

Then add in the fish sauce, white pepper, and cilantro. Also, adjust according to taste. I have a family of 7 people to feed. Each adult has their own distinct taste. It is very hard to please everyone. Anytime I finish a dish, the opinions are either “a little salty, a little flavorless, or just right”. Serve with green onions and cilantro if you desire.



Friday, April 12, 2013

Mam Chung (Vietnamese Meatloaf)...

Mam Chung (Vietnamese Meatloaf)...
I was visiting my parents in law one day when my mother in law taught me this recipe. She told me if I ever need to learn anything, just ask her. She's very sweet! Before heading home, she gave me the small purple onions and ground white pepper. For the rest of ingredients, I went to buy at the supermarket.
4 lbs of ground pork
2 jar of "mam loc xay (snakehead fish sauce)"
12 eggs (save 3 egg yolks for the top layer)
green onions (minced)
2 tbsp ground white pepper
5 small purple onions (minced)
5 small red peppers (cut in half each)
Turn on high heat for the steamer to start before starting the preparation.
Use a large mixing bowl. Add pork, fish sauce, 12 eggs, white pepper, and purple onion. MIX WELL. On the other hand, save 3 egg yolks in a small bowl, add green onions, and stir well.
Pour the mixture into a baking dish. Leave about an inch on the top as the mixture will rise when cooked.
Check to see if the meatloaf is cooked in about 25 to 30 min.

Use a toothpick to test if the meat is cooked. If it is dry, the mixture is about to be ready. Then, with a spoon, smear the yolk w/green onions on top of the mixture. Decorate the top w/a couple of pieces of red pepper on top. Cook for another 5-10 minutes with the lid off or when the yolk looks cooked.
This is how my "Mam Chung" came out!


Canh Kho Qua (Bitter Melon Soup)...

Canh Kho Qua (Bitter Melon Soup)...

I did not know how to eat this soup when I was younger because it was so bitter. It was until high school, that I tried to eat it again and started to appreciate the bitter taste. I have asked my mother and mother in law to show me a little bit in how to prepare this. Of course, I also like to research online for other ideas and here I found this link that matches exactly what my mothers taught me:

It's easier for me to just copy the link here for you to follow then creating my own when it's the same. Here is how my "Bitter Melon Soup" looks like!

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Trung Chien Voi Ca Chua va Hanh (Fried Eggs w/Tomatoes & Onions)...

Trung Chien Voi Ca Chua va Hanh (Fried Eggs w/Tomatoes & Onions)...

This is very quick and easy to make when I don't have time to cook a big meal for the family. I learned to make this from my aunt in Vietnam who came to visit recently.

9 eggs
7 green onions, minced
1/2 white onion (small pieces)
4 tomatoes (small pieces)
4 tbsp fish sauce
1/2 tspn black pepper
1 tbspn oil

In a mixing bowl, beat the eggs, onions, tomatoes, fish sauce, and pepper together until well blended.

Using a pan w/medium-low heat until hot; put in oil. Then, pour in egg mixture. Reduce heat. As mixture begins to set on bottom and sides of pan, lift and fold over with a spatula. Cook until the eggs are almost set.


Thursday, April 4, 2013

Vietnamese Honeycomb Cake (Banh Bo Nuong)...

Honeycomb Cake (Banh Bo Nuong)...

I have heard from many people that this dessert is very difficult to make. Of course, before I started baking this, I was really nervous but yes very excited to try something new. I learned this recipe from this link:

It was very simple to follow. I tried my first one last night and this is how it looked like... The only thing I saw not satisfactory was that my cake didn't turn out green. I guess I didn't put in food color or the pandan extract was not enough.

So today, my kids asked me if I can bake another one. I tried one more time, now with adding green food coloring, and this is how it looks like:

Very tasty and yummy! I would recommend this link. It feels great that I didn't fail on my 1st try baking this due to the recipe I learned from this website. Overall, one idea I really like from learning this recipe is the part of flipping the baking pan upside down on a metal rack to help it from deflating.