I love to cook and eat so I’m always interested in seeing what others are whipping up in their kitchens. I get lots of inspiration and cravings from food posts on other blogs and that’s kind of why I like to share what I’m eating on my blog. Perhaps I’ll inspire someone too.
Last night I made a rice cake stir-fry. These particular rice cakes are made of glutinous rice, like mochi, so they have a chewy texture but are firmer than mochi. Alone, they don’t taste like anything but they absorb the flavors of whatever ingredients you add to them really well.
In Korean cuisine rice cakes usually come in cylindrical, tube shapes but in Chinese cuisine they’re usually sold as flat, oval disks. Fun shapes aside, they’re the same thing. Sometimes I’ll use the tubes if the disks aren’t sale. You can find both varieties at any Asian supermarket, either in the refrigerated section or freezer area.
For my stir-fry, I used broccoli, Napa cabbage, sliced onions, sliced shiitake mushrooms (I just noticed that they look like slugs in the photo above. They were really big and plump is all I can say!), carrots, chicken breast, and scrambled eggs. And everything was seasoned with salt, black pepper, chopped garlic and some oyster sauce. If you’ve eaten Chinese food before, you’ve eaten oyster sauce even if you think you haven’t. It’s a very common Asian ingredient. Contrary to the name, oyster sauce doesn’t taste fishy but more like a thickened soy sauce.
Some ingredients in the stir-fry take a little longer to cook than others, for example the onions and carrots compared to the chicken breast. You just need to cook one ingredient at a time and throw everything together at the end. It may sound complicated but it’s actually a really easy one-pot dish that’s tasty, nutritious and very filling. You don’t even need to clean the pot out in between ingredients. Cook the first ingredient, remove it and place it on a platter, then proceed to cook the next ingredient, remove it and place it on that same platter from before, repeating these steps until you’ve cooked everything. Then toss everything into that same pot at the end to combine and heat through.
I’ve also been craving bagels and veggie cream cheese lately.
For my recipe I used:
- 2 blocks of cream cheese (16 oz. total) at room temperature
- 1 red/orange bell pepper, chopped
- 3 scallions, chopped
- 1 large carrot, grated
- black pepper and salt to taste
You can obviously add whatever vegetables you like such as radishes and celery but I keep it basic. You can also make your veggie cream cheese chunkier by chopping the carrot instead of grating it but I find chopped carrots a little more difficult to eat, and I feel I get all the crunch I need from the bell pepper.
For the veggie cream cheese, you’ll want to make sure that your cream cheese is at room temperature. It makes it a lot easier to fold in the vegetables. However, if you’re short on time, you can place the cream cheese into a microwave-safe container and nuke it for a few seconds until it’s softened. That shouldn’t take more than a minute.
After that, just pop your finished veggie cream cheese into the fridge to get cold and firm again. Or you can eat it right away. Your choice 😉
And here are a couple of random photos I forgot to post on Valentine’s Day. I received some adorable, bite-sized, mini-cupcakes from Crumbs Bake Shop in NYC.
There were two chocolate frosted vanilla cupcakes with strawberry jelly fillings, two chocolate frosted chocolate cupcakes with vanilla filling, two vanilla frosted vanilla cupcakes with coffee filling, two vanilla frosted vanilla cupcakes with vanilla filling, two chocolate frosted vanilla cupcakes, and two vanilla frosted vanilla cupcakes.
Verdict: they were really cute but a little on the dry side.