Saturday, December 30, 2006

Toxic Fumes Part II

Update regarding my blue salad bowl mess - I turned the oven on to 500 degrees, filled the house w/ toxic fumes and passed out. j/k I didn't pass out but I didn't breathe through my nose until the blue pieces of plastic melted away from the rack and dropped onto foil paper. They were hot and loose enough to wipe off with a napkin using an oven mitt. My plan worked out brilliantly except I didn't expect the house to be filled with so much smoke, the smell to still be so potent, and my hand to get burnt. My husband was afraid of leaving me at home alone cause he thought I might burn down the house.

Yippie!! With just a little bit of suffering the nasty pieces of plastic are gone and I can bake again!!!

Happy New Year! Just for you some budding cooking tips. :)

Budding Cooking Tip #1: Don't try to maneuver your hand in a hot oven without an oven mitt.
Budding Cooking Tip #2: Wet oven mitts are not effective. :)

Friday, December 29, 2006

Wonton Shrimp

Wonton Shrimp - This is a dish my grandma makes a lot for family gatherings. I'm not sure if it's of Vietnamese origin. But my grandma started making this a couple of years ago and it shows up almost every gathering. We just had it last week for Christmas. :)

Wonton wrappers
Egg wash to close wrappers
Soy sauce for marinating shrimp
Oil for frying - I used olive oil.

I bought a package of frozen shrimp from Costco. Defrosted them and marinated the shrimp in soy sauce for about 20 minutes. Leave a little part of the tail out and wrap the rest of the shrimp in the wonton forming a little envelope. Use the egg wash to seal the wonton together. Fill the pan with oil and let it heat up. Then place the little shrimps and let them swim in the oil for 4 minutes per side until they are lighly brown and crisp. Take them out and place them on some paper towels to remove excess grease.

mishap #158: i didn't turn on the fan and the tile is greasy now. my husband noticed. is that what the fan is used for? oops. another duh moment brought to you by the budding cook. :( i will mop tomorrow.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Modern Art or Not

(Don't try this at home)
I preheated the oven to 400 degrees for the egg tarts yesterday. With my back turned to the oven I was carefully pressing the dough into the muffin pan. In the corner of my eye I noticed FIRE. Blue plastic was melting down and dripping onto the heat rod inside the oven. There was a huge flame much like one in a fireplace. I forgot to take out my large blue plastic salad bowl. I screamed FIRE and turned off the oven. My husband ran down with an extinguisher. Luckily the flames extinguished on their own. That's what I get for using my oven as a storage facility. Above is the picture of my contribution to modern art. I still need to clean the rest of the oven. How do I get the other pieces of blue plastic off the rack? Any ideas? Maybe I could turn the oven back on to melt the rest of the plastic off. After it dries it does form into hard plastic. I might give it a go but I'm a little scared something might go astray. As for my egg tarts I brought all the ingredients and baked them at my mom's house. We fanned out the house since it was toxic smelling.

Portuguese Egg Tarts

I made 12 egg tarts from the recipe on Rasa Malaysia. I had to improvise since I don't have a strainer, electric beater or a rolling pin! So I didn't strain the filling, used a whisk to mix, and I used a meat mallet to flatten the dough. :D I used a silicon muffin pan so I didn't need to butter the pan. However the baking time is longer when using silicon. It took about 30 minutes instead of 10-20 minutes. The crust came out crispy and buttery. It tasted like it came out of a bakery. They were a success for the Christmas party. The only problem was I didn't make enough. This recipe is a keeper.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Baked Chicken Katsu

1 egg
3 tablespoons of flour
3/4 cups of panko strips
3 chicken breast filets

Adapted from: Fried recipe & Oven-Fried

Cut chicken breast into thin slices. Roll in flour. Dip into beaten egg mixture. Lastly roll generously in the panko crumbs. Bake in oven for 15-20 minutes depending on doneness of chicken for 500 degrees.

I tried a mix of ketchup with soy sauce and it actually tasted ok.

Monday, December 18, 2006

The Art of Cooking

Discovery is probably one of the most rewarding things in life. Learning to drive for the first time (hugging the side of the road), the first kiss (not so romantic), marriage (quite lovely), cooking (not a chef but a budding one). Cooking is not as hard as I imagined. Well I'm still learning the basics but I'm glad cooking is not an exact science.

This blog is my slow discovery on what cooking really is.

How long does chicken take to cook before I stop cutting it halves to make sure the pink is no longer pink?

Holiday Beef Carrot Leaf


1 Beef - Cow Hole Punch
1 Carrot - Hole Punch
1 Leaf - Hole Punch
1 Glue Stick
1 Paper Shaper Scissors


Punch little carrots out of different color paper. Pull off the leafy part to make Christmas lights. You can draw the wire from light to light. Punch little cows to make reindeer. I drew Santa's sleigh. Layer leaves on top of each other to create a holiday christmas tree or a wreath.

Have a Merry Christmas!

Sunday, December 17, 2006


I tried the breakfast pancakes from Rasa Malaysia. I made two batches! The first batch I made with water and I dont' think I added enough. They came out way too the thick. The second batch I tried with milk. They yielded quite a lot of pancakes and my husband I were beyond full. They reminded me of desserts my sisters and I would make back when we were little.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Frozen Dinner?

The ingredients did come from the freezer but it wasn't quite a frozen dinner - Frozen vegetables and Frozen Tilapia Fillets. I placed my $1 dollar frozen fillets in the microwave per the instructions on the back for 2-3 minutes. Then I dipped them in a mixture of flour and water and lightly fried them with olive oil.

We ate this with jasmine rice.

I liked it! It was yummy. I haven't really used flour yet in any of my cooking. I was craving something flour like after seeing the salty pancakes over at Rasa Malaysia.

So I'm back. I haven't stopped cooking though I don't do it as often now. Been busy changed jobs and getting adjusted and such.

I'm happy to be back though. I'll update soon with some Vietnamese recipes I've learned. Yum.