Spicy Lettuce Rolls

>> May 28, 2010

A little bit of background: I discovered this Asian dish back in 2007, oddly, in San Diego, California. I must have been missing out on good asian resto here that I had to discover it outside the very asia. So I am making this based on my memory of how it tasted.

- 1 pack of iceberg lettuce
- 1/2 kg ground beef
- 1 medium sized red bell pepper, chopped
- 3 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 medium size white onion, chopped
- 2 red tomatoes, chopped
- 2 Tbsp finely chopped corriander
- Ginger powder
- Chili powder
- 3 Tbsp of Kikoman soysauce
- 2 tbsp of Hoisin sauce for added sweetness

1. Separate the iceberg lettuce carefully to make sure it doesn't rip or break. Wash thoroughly and let it drip on a strainer. Set aside.
2. Heat pan and add a little bit of oil. Saute garlic until golden brown.
3. Add ground beef and mix well. When it's turning brown, pour about 1 1/2 cups of water to boil it. I prefer to boil rather than to just stir fry because it makes the beef more tender, plus it kills bacteria.
4. When the liquid is almost dried up, add Hoisin and Kikoman soysauce. Mix well. Remember to adjust to your taste. If it's too bland, just add gradually until you reach your preferred taste.
5. Add red bell pepper. Give it a minute of interval, then add the white onion. Mix together for a minute, then add tomatoes. The reason of the intervals is to make sure you don't over cook nor undercook the veggies. I like my onion and tomatoes a little bit crunchy so I do this technique.
6. Sprinkle corriander and mix well.
7. Add Ginger powder, give it about 3 dashes.
8. Sprinkle chili powder. I'd recommend you do this gradually until you reach the spiciness you prefer. Then add a pinch of pepper to taste.

Serves 3 heads.

To serve, lay the iceberg lettuce on the plate and fill it with ground beef and roll. You usually hold the roll with your bare hands and eat, so make sure you wash your hands too ;).


Under Construction

>> May 11, 2010

I'm currently finalizing the design and stuff i want to put in my homemaker's shack so there will be some stuff in this blog that will go on and off. Stay tuned!


The Sick Shack

I've been sickie for 4 days so I haven't been in the mood to cook and explore new recipes. Aside from very busy work week last week, I feel like I'm suffering from a slight trauma caused by the kitten incident last Sunday evening, so I am still not feeling 100% right now, and just not inspired to move around.

Looks like this week is not our week. It's Mark's 2nd sick day now... but at least I'm almost fully recovered and can take care of him.

So for brunch today, and before I go to bed, here's my sick recipe - a recipe for the sick :).

- Pea soup from Mark's and Spencer. Of course it's canned :P
- foccacia bread from Bizu (our fav bakery)
- Scrambled egg
- Strawberries on the side.
- coffee and orange juice.

Ciao for now!


Mango Salsa evening

>> May 5, 2010

Isn't it good to know that my fiance and I still eat?

Tonight's dinner is inspired by Ate Bheng. I saw this idea in her Facebook and found it highly appetizing. It's fun how much stuff you can match with Mango Salsa. I did a Mango Salsa menu a while back, with chicken breast and baby potatoes. But this one is healthier and more budget friendly.

- 3 pcs. eggplant, cut in half and then length-wise. You may cut it in 3 parts if it egg plant is longer.
- 2 pcs. tilapia fillet.
- dried rosemary.
- salt and pepper.
- olive oil.

- 1 ripe mango, diced.
- 1 medium sized red bell pepper.
- 1 tbsp. coriander, finely chopped.
- 1 tsp. calamansi/lime/lemon juice.
- 1 tsp. sambal oelek (optional)
- salt and pepper to taste.

Prepare the salsa:
1. Grill red bell pepper until the skin blisters.
2. Peel off the skin and chop it finely.
3. Combine mango, coriander, calamansi/lime/lemon juice, bell pepper in a bowl and mix well. You can add sambal oelek if you wish to have a slight spicy flavor in it, but it's totally optional.
4. Add salt and pepper to taste. If mango is not sweet enough, you can sprinkle a little bit of white sugar to compensate with the sourness of the lime juice.
5. Cover and chill in the fridge for a few minutes.

Fish and Eggplant
1. Apply a little bit of olive oil on the fish fillet. Sprinkle salt and pepper and rub dried rosemary herb.
2. Grill the tilapia fillet. If you have no griller like me, I used my oven to grill it, in 250 C. Turn the fish on the other side when its cooked.
3. Grill the egg plants as well, until it's brown and a bit withered.

Serve this with the chilled mango salsa. How do you eat it? I personally like to top the eggplant with the salsa. Mmmm lekker!


Bubble Blahs

I work and live at night time. I am a person deprived of natural light. I rarely cook in the morning as I'm almost always asleep, else busy with house chores. As much as I love natural light in my photography, I'm afraid I don't usually have that luxury, unless I sacrifice my sleep, or make an effort to stay up longer during the day to do a cooking + photo session. So I depend on my flash, and sometimes, available light from my fluorescent bulbs. Although, in my opinion, nothing beats the natural light, I am, so far, satisfied with my shots using my flash that I learned to love.

I always look forward to the weekends for some sunlight.

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