Nikuman (Japanese Steamed Pork Buns, a.k.a. Chinese Pork Baozi)


As I finished steaming these buns earlier today, my husband walked into the kitchen hungry: “Here!  Try one of these,” I said. “You made Baozi?” he asked. “No, these are Nikuman,” I explained. As he bit into one, he remarked, “No.  These are Chinese.  These are Pork Baozi.” “No they aren’t.  They are Nikuman.  It’s [...]

Christmas Dinner: How to make Prime Rib (Standing Rib Roast) with Au Jus and Yorkshire Pudding

Prime Rin (a.k.a. "Standing Rib Roast")

Every Christmas, I like to make a Prime Rib roast.  You can usually find “prime” grade standing rib roast at Costco the week of Christmas.  Otherwise, you can usually find “choice” grade at Costco or the supermarket.  ”Prime” grade beef is usually double the price of the “choice” grade… and frankly, it tastes the same [...]

What to do with leftover Okara (Okara Banana Bread, Okara Meatloaf)

Okara Banana Bread

Okara is the strained & pureed pulp of soy beans, leftover from making soy milk.  A few days ago, I made soy milk and mentioned that you can use the leftover okara in various recipes.  This  pulp is basically “pureed bean” – and can be used as a nutritious meat extender, or high fiber addition [...]

“KFC chicken” casserole bake

"KFC Chicken" Casserole Bake

The other night, I was in the mood for KFC… but too lazy to go get it.  Plus KFC is expensive these days!  It’s almost $30 for an 8 piece meal with sides and biscuits!  Crazy expensive!  Earlier in the day, I had purchased a rotisserie chicken from the grocery store… and figured I would [...]

Kung Pao Chicken (宫保鸡丁) (宮保雞丁)

Kung Pao Chicken

Apparently, there are two styles of “Kung Pao Chicken“!  The original Szechuan version was created during the Chinese Qing Dynasty, and normally contains Szechuan Peppercorns.  These “peppercorns” do not come from the Piperaceae family (Pepper)  - they are actually from the Rutaceae plant family (Citrus).  This unique spice gives a tingling/numbing flavor which is typical [...]

Hoisin & Beer Braised Beef Short Ribs

Hoisin & Beer Braised Beed Short Ribs

I’m always looking for new ways to cook beef short rib.  The other night, I was combing through recipes, and found a Dave Lieberman recipe that looked good.  I made a few adjustments to the recipe… and I was pretty happy with the results.  The cloves of garlic end up wonderfully caramelized after cooking – [...]

Goat Cheese and Kale Pesto Chicken Roulade

Goat Cheese & Kale Pesto Chicken Roulade with White Wine Reduction

I’m on a mission these days to try new foods… new vegetables, new flavors… basically anything that is outside my normal routine.  It helps that the supermarket down the street now carries all kinds of exotic fruits and vegetables.  For example, I can buy lemongrass, daikon radish, shitake mushrooms… even yuca root!  I don’t normally [...]

Pork Tamales in July


I love tamales.  I remember my first taste of a tamale was in the 5th grade, when a classmate shared her lunch with me.  Since then, I’ve always looked forward to eating tamales around Christmas time when all the local Mexican restaurants have them available for bulk purchase. Frozen tamales from the supermarket just don’t [...]

Shabu Shabu (Japanese Hot Pot)

shabu shabu

Shabu shabu (Japanese hot pot) is one of my favorite ways to eat beef.  The key is to get beef sliced thin enough… Japanese markets often have Shabu Shabu sliced beef for sale.  You can also find thin sliced meat at Korean and Chinese markets.  If you have a home slicer, it helps if the [...]

Chicken Katsu and Japanese Curry

chicken katsu and curry

Growing up, we ate tonkatsu (pork katsu) all the time.  While I love tonkatsu, I much prefer chicken katsu for ease of preparation.  I always keep a bag of frozen chicken tenders in the freezer – which are great for making chicken katsu. Japanese curry was also something we had for dinner often – at [...]