Semi-Wordless Wednesdays 6•8•2011 (Quadruple King Fatburger Challenge)

The Quadruple King: 2 manly pounds of cooked beef with all the fixings between two buns.

6 minutes and 28 seconds later…

Instant food-induced coma.

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Good Food (Coconut Curry Chicken and Garlic Chicken Gyoza)

What a delicious week this has been.

First off, as you all know if you have been reading along, I’ve been interning at a bakery all week where delicious pastries of all sizes and shapes abound. Goodness, have I had my fair share of test tastings and sweets during the last week.

I’ve also been cooking up some more extravagant dishes in the kitchen as of late with the free time I have away from school. This free time has been an absolute gift; not only have I found time to care of so many things on my to-do list, but I’ve had time to dive into some dishes I have been waiting to cook up.

Also, as you may also know if you have been reading along, this was prom weekend for me, meaning a great dinner — filet mignon, chicken, sweet potato souffle, creme brulee — at prom and a scrumptious breakfast with friends and Girlfriend (you can see of what breakfast I’m talking about below and in this post).

With all these sweets from the bakery and elsewhere, my sweet taste buds are starting to get a bit tired out. My saving grace? Coconut Curry Chicken and Garlic Chicken gyoza I prepared and froze about two weeks ago, ready to be steamed or pan-fried at will.

These gyoza were incredibly fun to make (and very time-consuming, but I already told you that I have lots of time on my hands nowadays) because I started with some gyoza wrappers I bought, excess coconut milk and garlic, a fridge-full of ingredients, and no recipe in hand. I have to say, these gyoza definitely turned out very well for my first time preparing them, considering I was cooking off the cuff (off the top of my, umm, chef’s hat? But I digress…). The chicken delicately poached in a combination of coconut milk and curry is just awesome and, well, who doesn’t like garlic and chicken? I mean, come on, that combination was born a winner.

Here’s to another week of deliciousness–albeit, a bit further towards the healthier side :P.

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Plans (Roasted Purple Cauliflower and Broccoli & Turkey Meatballs)

Plans have a funny way of turning into something completely unplanned.

Sometimes you spend two hours preparing food for a bike ride to and picnic at the local park, and sometimes that park and bike ride becomes an indoor picnic on your bed with a picnic blanket, Regina Spektor in the background, and a ravenous labrador retriever hounding you for a bite to eat.

Sometimes you bike after you have an indoor picnic and then decide to come back and play Halo with Girlfriend because she insists upon blasting me upside the face with a plasma gun (Score: Fudge 17, Girlfriend 0…sorry, Girlfriend 😉 ).

Authentic, delicious mochi balls from a little Japanese/Korean market down the street for dessert.

Maybe you need to take Girlfriend home right away but really want a frozen lemonade so you stop at 7-11 for a Coke slurpee.

Maybe you were really excited for the plans you made and thought it was perfect.

Well, maybe they were; deviating from plans, however, made my day that much more perfect. Oh, that and the fact that I made turkey meatballs and found purple cauliflower at the farmer’s market. Purple cauliflower, people.

Did I mention it’s purple?

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Short and Sweet (Spring Salad with Citrus Vinaigrette)

Let me get to the point.

I’ve got a salad. It has an awesome vinaigrette. It’s basically the essence of spring tossed into a bowl. It also uses some extra candied orange peels from my last post. It’s quick, it’s resourceful, it’s intensely flavorful. It’s awesome.

Go make it for lunch. Now. Enough said.

Hey, pecan! Get back in there!

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Comfort (Roasted Tomato Soup & Panko-Crusted Grilled Cheese)

Those precious, rare, free moments. Those few golden hours with nothing errands to run, no homework to do, no tests to study for, no college apps need to complete anymore (I just finished all of them!!! :)). Those pure, unadulterated stretches of time to relax, rejuvenate, and recover.

Life can become hectic, especially for my friends and I, along with any other teenager, in what is probably the most volatile time of his or her life. With all this seemingly unending chaos, some people seem to burn out. I may be a second semester senior, but I can’t burn out; my grades still matter, along with those upcoming college interviews (very important…I’ve actually got two tomorrow!) and my weekend job at the restaurant. When I can devote a few worry-free hours and a bit of love to cook some comfort food in the middle of all of this, though, I take that opportunity.

I’d hardly be sane otherwise.

It’s a Sandwich-Soup-Sandwich Sandwich! Get it? Since the sandwich slices are “sandwiching” the soup…oh, nevermind.

The ingredients and recipe are simple enough for these dishes. Go the extra mile for these, though. Take that extra few glances in the oven to check if your vegetables are at the peak of their caramelization; take the few moments to taste and spice the soup along the way. Take the time to spruce up your grilled cheese with some panko breading; take the few extra seconds needed to grate the cheese instead of slicing it.

I could definitely the care and love I put into this perfect comfort combo. After I finished, I sat back in my chair, dunked my grilled cheese, ate…and did absolutely nothing else.

Perfect.

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Hello, Blogosphere! (Pasta Mama)

Well, as this is my first blog post ever on my first blog ever, I think I should make a good first impression. Put my best foot forward, right? Well, what better way to do that then to share my signature dish with all of you! How about…

…pasta and scrambled eggs?


If you’re still reading after that, I thank you from the bottom of my heart for still giving me a chance.

My inspiration for this dish comes from a restaurant in my neighborhood called Hugo’s and their Pasta Mama. As usual, one night after a long day of school and rehearsal, I staggered through the back door of my house with a monstrous appetite. As I was foraging through the various foods in my pantry and fridge, Pasta Mama came to mind almost immediately. So fresh, so flavorful, so…odd. My kind of meal. I needed to make it, pronto.

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