Saturday, July 31

Daikon and Pork Belly Soup

This is one of my favorite soups my mom has made us since I was a child. Just simmer daikon and pork belly in broth until soft and tender. Season with light soy sauce and ground white pepper. Add some green onion and cilantro before serving.


"To the Sea" with Jack Johnson

Photos from Jack Johnson's "To the Sea" Concert
at DTE Energy Music Theatre, Clarkston, MI
Fantastic performance!

Wednesday, July 28

Good Eats: Vegetarian & Locally Sourced

My friends, Lynne and Gary invited me to join them for a Sunday dinner. Lynne always goes to local Farmer's Markets on the weekend when she can, for fresh and beautiful produce. This time she got quite a few of great looking vegetables, and it was a nice relaxing day -- so they decided to spend quality time cooking together. Lucky me, I got to enjoy that lovely dinner with them!

Mediterranean Panzanella (bread) Salad

Lynne made this Martha Stewart's recipe using Zingerman's bread -- together with fennel, local green beans, fresh mozzarella, calamata olives, red onion, dressed with olive oil and red wine vinegar. This dish is a wonderful summer salad. Absolutely enjoyed it. It was fantastico!!

Three Beet Caviar with Endive and Goat Cheese

This is such a beautifully-presented dish. Lynne made the dish using Chioggia beets, red beets, and golden beets -- served with local goat cheese. The tri-color caviar of beets got mixed together with creamy goat cheese right before we ate them. Adapted from Deborah Madison cookbook, Lynne & Gary's vegetarian guru.

Risotto with Kale and Gremolata

This was made of kale, arborio rice, and Gremolata -- which is a mixture of lemon peel, garlic and parsley. Gary cooked them for only 5 min. in the pressure cooker, and it turned out just perfect! The best risotto I've had so far...

It was a really nice dinner with my besties.

Loving this cheese grater :)

We finished our meal with a Thai dessert I brought over. I quicky made this --Sticky Rice Pudding with longan & young coconut, and topted with coconut milk -- from what I had in my pantry. With a nice cup of coffee, it was a great ending.

********

Good time! We should do this more often :)

Sunday, July 25

Spicy Basil Beef

I made this dish quickly out of what I had in my refrigerator. The method of cooking is the same as how I make Thai Spicy Basil Shrimp, which you can find the recipe here. I just added sliced green beans to the dish instead of carrot matchsticks. Also, I added some dark soy sauce to give it a little color. We enjoyed it with steamed jasmine rice as usual, and it was wonderful.

From Garden to Kitchen

These are some photos I took from my friend's, (Jill), garden when I was over for a grill out last weekend. Her flowers and vegetables in a nicely laid-out garden are just beautiful. It's so neat seeing those plants that giving the vegetables which go straight to the kitchen, and get cooked up into something nice. Love those tomatoes!

Lots of chili peppers to come

Egg plants

What a beautiful garden!


Saturday, July 24

Weekend Brunch at Mama Bear's

I knew I was missing out when I heard lots of people talked about great food at Mama Bear's Cafe. Finally, I made it there for a weekend brunch, with my friend, Lynne and her husband, Gary. We definitely enjoyed the food, and were glad there's place like this in town.

Mama Bear's is located on Turner Street in Old Town half a block off of Grand River Avenue, with many art galleries and specialty stores nearby. The place is a lovely relaxing and cozy cafe'. We went there quite late, so many items in their pastry cases were gone. We all started our meal with a nice cup of a latte'.

I had an omelette with tomatoes, spinach, roasted red peppers, havarti cheese, and sausage. The portion is very generous. All ingredients are fresh, and mostly local. It was delicious, I would order that again when going back.

Gary ordered an omelette as well. His had roasted red peppers and turkey bacon. Nothing was left on his plate, so I am pretty sure he loved his food. Our dishes came with buttered toasts.

Mama Bear's is also known as a vegan-friendly restaurant. They also have some gluten-free items. Lynne had tempeh sandwiches, and she loved it.

With their reputation of having the best homemade pastries and goodies in town, we just had to try some! The three of us shared an eclair and a cream puff. Those crispy light pastry shells, filled with light and fluffy cream were amazing! We were so full with our food, and didn't think we would have finished those goodies when we saw the size of them. But we did anyway...


Mama Bear's Cafe':
1224 Turner Street
Lansing, MI 48906
(517) 485-6262‎




With full stomach and happy heart, we left with the smiles on our face.


Tuesday, July 20

Saturday Grill Out

Fajita dinner at my friends' house this past weekend.
Al and Jill share with me the passion of cooking and enjoying great food.
Last Saturday was an unplanned get-together that happened to perfectly work out.

Once the marinated chicken and steak cooked to the liking, Al removed them from the grilled, covered with foil, and let them rest for about 10 minutes.

Meat cut across the grain, into strips

Homemade guacamole, caramelized onion & pepper, bean, sour cream,
pico de gallo, cilantro, jalapeno, and flour tortillas.

Fresh fried tortilla chips

The fun part, -- roll them up!

Sweet & refreshing watermelon,
and Cheryl's delicious pasta salad complete the dinner.

After a short break, we had grilled peaches and vanilla ice cream for dessert.

******


Thanks Al & Jill for hosting and cooking up a great dinner.
It was lovely seeing some soccer families, and spending no-soccer time together!


Sunday, July 18

Grilled Peaches

Fruit on the grill?
You would definitely love it!

You will need:
Ripe but still firm peaches, halved and pit removed
Honey and Grand Manier, whisk together
*****
Brush peaches with honey mixture

On the hot grill, place peaches cut-side down.
Close the grill top, or cover with foil, for the best result.
Grill until caramelized and tender.

Serve warm, with ice cream.
Or with yogurt, creme fraiche, or more honey...
Use your imaginary and experiment what you like!

Wednesday, July 14

Roti & Curry Sauce

One of the dishes I had for this past weekend's eats was this roti paratha, with curry sauce.


I actually made extra sauce when cooking Thai chicken curry for dinner the night before. The layered Indian flat bread comes handily from Oriental Market's freezer. I just had to cook each round piece of the dough in hot pan until flaky and brown, and warm up the sauce to serve with.


Serve this as either appetizer, snack, or main dish -- it's all good!



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