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Category Archives: What I’m eating

Christmas 2013

The only good thing about working Christmas day and coming home after dinner is all cleaned up is being able to skip straight to sandwiches! Don’t get me wrong, I love all of the individual components that complete a Christmas dinner. I just feel like when they are all laid out on the table that I have to take certain proportions of each dish and enjoy them all separately. This is fine and dandy but what I really like about Christmas dinner is everything. So when I have the opportunity to cram as much as I can of everything between 2 slices of bread I’m a super happy camper. Paired with the last glass of a fancy bottle of wine and it’s instantly Christmas in my mouth!

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Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night!

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Posted by on December 25, 2012 in Dinner, What I'm eating, Wine

 

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ANA Oysters and Grill

If you ever find yourself walking around Causeway Bay without a reservation and it’s getting close to meal time, it’s a pretty good idea to just jump into the nearest restaurant before they’re all full for the next several hours.  This past Wednesday little Ms. Cupcake and I were doing just that while birthday shopping for Jr and it occurs to us we’re both starving and places are filling up fast.  We turn the corner onto Lockhart Rd and are both drawn to 2 separate signs across the street.  Oddly enough both were for the same restaurant.  The place looks completely deserted from the outside which would normally make us pass the place  up but for whatever reason we decided to take a chance on this one and jumped into the elevator.

We were quite happy we did and yet a little sad at the same time since we were shopping neither of is had our cameras so we’ll just have to make due with phone photos.

If you know Ms. Cupcake or myself at all then you know there are 2 things we rarely pass up at a restaurant, oysters and tasting menus.  Not only did we have the place to ourselves…I guess everyone else thought it was closed too…which ment exceptional service but we were quickly greeted with a platter of our favorite bi-valves.

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Pacific, Irish rock, Kumumoto, and Namibia.  I was particularly impressed with Namibia.  I’ve never knowingly had an African oyster before and this was a real treat.  They served the oysters with a typical vinegar, and cocktail sauce but then threw me another exciting curve with a Thai style sauce consisting of lime, sugar, fish sauce, and a little mint which complimented the oysters perfectly.  I’ll have to look onto replicating this sauce later.

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The first dish on the tasting menu was a steamed foie gras mousse with white truffle oil and caviar served with a lemon and mint sorbet.  The mousse was a fantastic combination of creamyness and mouth bursting flavor. The first bite of the sorbet was a perfect palate cleansing experience but every bite after becoming more and more overwhelmingly sour that you are glad the portion is so small.

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Next up we indulged a little further with some cherrystone clams before our next tasting course.

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Razor clam with roasted garlic, vermouth, and saffron sauce.  Fantastic sauce but the clam was a bit overcooked.

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Next up a house smoked Japanese pork belly and prawns.  Absolutely delicious.  The pork wad tender and not overly smoked while the prawns were perfectly cooked and bursting with flavor.

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Our fish course was an Australian seabass with crispy skin and tender flesh.

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For our main we had M7 Waygu rump.  I didn’t read “rump roast” when looking at the menu so was initially disappointed until I took a second glance and was instantly impressed how juicy and tender they served their rumps…hahaha food puns.

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The other nice thing about the beef was the assortment of condiments that came with it.  4 different house seasoned sea salts and 2 different mustards made every bite just as exciting as the first.

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Last and absolutely least was the duo of gelato for dessert.  The white chocolate strawberry was ok but too large and then they paired it with the super sour lemon-mint sorbet again…why?

I hope to go back again to sample some of their al a carte items…and of course some more oysters!

 

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Chinese Style BBQ

The differences between Chinese and western style barbeque’s aren’t as vast as I thought they might be (infact I’m only going to list two) and the Chinese may be on to something as the reasons for they’re style are rather sound.

The differences I will be referring to are going to be either personal or extremely  stereotypic so my apologies if they don’t actually apply to you.

#1 Instead of just 1 guy manning the grill and drinking beers while the ladies fix the salads and side dishes inside while watching the kids, Chinese style BBQ gets everyone involved.  Typically the head honcho will still be charge of the fire starting as it shows off his manliness. Then it becomes a fend for yourself free for all as everyone grabs a barbecue fork, sits around the fire and cooks their own lunch/dinner.  I’ve been told by a wise old man (my grandfather-in-law) that this is so everyone can gather and talk together. This actually works quite well…even if you are the only English speaker at the fire…people will continue trying to talk to you even though they know that your Cantonese skills are minimal at best.

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#2 The second difference would be the selection of food.  While both cultures seem to agree that a barbecue isn’t complete without hot dogs, hamburgers are traded for fish balls and barbecue sauce for honey.  I’m fact that was one of the shockers for me was that EVERYTHING gets a good layer of honey painted and the cooked on for a sweet crunchy layer.  Once again these substitutions make sense as instead f having a grill you have an open flame with BBQ forks.  It is much easier to skewer a fish ball and hold it over an open flame than a hamburger would be.

Aside from the 2 big differences listed above, the rest is actually quite similar.  We all like to go out and enjoy the weather with some grilled meats and a few cold ones regardless of what those meats may be and how/who are cooking them.

Looks like the weather is finally turning all around the world as well so this may be the last BBQ of the season.  Let the baking and roasting begin!

 
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Posted by on October 3, 2012 in Events, food, What I'm eating

 

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Ramen

Ramen

In honor of nutrition month I would like to show everyone what I like to do with ramen.  For me, instant noodles aren’t a meal.  I wouldn’t even really classify them as a snack because 10 minutes after eating them I’m hungry again.

I started playing with ramen around the time I was in 6th or 7th grade.  At the time I realized I was no longer satisfied with 1 pack of noodles so the first thing I tried was simply eating a second pack.  This worked for a time or two, but then my mind began to wander.  Now, I don’t suggest eating a lot of instant noodles as they really aren’t that great for you.  Yet on the occasion when you find your self being drawn in to their simplicity keep this post in mind.

Now that I live in Hong Kong there are quite a few more options for instant noodles and I have found a new favorite, but this can be done with any pack you prefer.

My pack of choice is the Ajisen Ramen.  The flavoring packs have a deeper taste to them and the noodles tend to have a nicer bite.

They also come in a two pack so it’s great for couples!

 

 

We simply begin by ignoring all of the cooking instructions and boil a pot of water.  (For a healthier version boil a pot of your favorite stock instead and ditch all the flavoring packets!)

Dump out the flavoring packs into a good-sized bowl that you’re planning to eat out of.  When the water (or stock) comes to a boil add about 1/2cup to your seasonings and stir to combine.

 

 

Dump your noodles into the boiling water and cook them until they just start to get tender.  Trust me on this one, if you wait until they are cooked through by the time we’re finished here your just going to have a pile of mush in the bottom of your bowl!  Remove the noodles from the water but keep the water in the pot either using chopsticks or a noodle spoon.

Top your noodles with a handful or 2 or greens.  Dark leafy veggies are an excellent source of nutrition and they are darn tasty as well!  You and boil up some asparagus, broccoli, choy sum, or bok choy ahead of time and add it at this stage as well for an even healthier treat.

My favorite thing to do when playing with ramen is to add an egg.  Today I decided to poach my egg as I’m feeling quite lazy and don’t want to dirty another pan but you can scramble, over easy, or sunny side up if you’d like!  Another option would be to have some hard-boiled eggs on hand.  They make a great snack as well!

If you’re going to poach keep the noodle water, add a teaspoon of vinegar, stir your water, drop in the egg and let it cook for about a minute to a minute and a half.

Scoop out the egg, top up your bowl with water (or stock) and enjoy!

*Side note* You may notice my ramen flavor today is pork bone broth.  This is about as close as this lazy chef was getting to a roast crown of pork to celebrate today’s holiday.  Happy roast crown of pork day!

 

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Frozen Food

Now, I know that I said we’d be focusing on health this month…but it becomes very difficult with days like today.

Happy Frozen Food day!

When I first read that today was frozen food day I instantly wanted to have a junk food fest: Pizza rolls, extra buttery popcorn, burritos, and top it all off with a microwave cake.  Then I had to take a step back and try to have something a little healthier.  I’m not sure if “ding ding” dim sum can be called healthy…but it’s better than what I was planning! 😉

What’s your frozen comfort food?

 
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Posted by on March 6, 2012 in food, Lunch, Photography, What I'm eating

 

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Happy Birthday!

It’s been a great day of celebrating my aging family today.  My brother-in-law just so happens to share a birthday with my mom.  This morning I spent about an hour and a half talking to mommy on one of the greatest inventions ever, Skype.

If you have an internet connection (obviously you do as you’re reading this post) and don’t have a Skype account then your really missing out on an amazing opportunity.  It’s especially wonderful as I live on opposite sides of the globe from my mother.

After making my mom’s day complete by entertaining het with her grandson it was go time.  My brother-in-law requested a cooking lesson for his birthday present this year, opting to make his own birthday cake.

As the cake went in the oven I ran out the door to pick up lunch.  A beautiful 24″ pepperoni pizza.  The rest of the afternoon was spent decorating the cake.

Dinner was wonderful with my mother-in-law cooking each of us a pidgeon, spinach with crab sauce, and fish 2 ways.  All was washed down with some Barefoot Shiraz and followed by a mini fireworks show.

Even though it’s not my birthday, I still can’t help but feel like I’m the one that received all the gifts today.  From skype, to huge pizzas, to black forest cake…it sure was a great day.

Happy Birthday!

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(and happy pistachio day for those of you keeping track)

 

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Hot n Spicy!

Happy International Hot and Spicy Day!

Today also happens to be Fig Neuton Day, but we’re going to focus on the international celebration today.  (Besides, I forgot to try to pick up some Fig Neutons).

With all of that in mind, allow me to introduce you to a condiment I’ve never felt necessary to pick up off the table until today.

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Chili paste, you scare me.  Just a sniff is enough set my nose hairs on fire and my mouth watering like it’s gearing up to put out an out of control forest blaze.

Today we’re celebrating, and without a Fig Neuton to save me from the fire, I added some chili paste to my sweet corn sauce and smothered it all over a sole fillet. 

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Yes, it looks quite disgusting, but haven’t we learned to see past looks yet?  Upon tasting my new concoction my mouth is filled with a deep creamy flavor…until the spice kicks in.  I would show a photo after the first bite but nobody really wants to see a grown man cry. 

For the record, I did finish my lunch and have already marked it in my planner to buy Fig Neutons for next year.

How spicy was your hot n spicy day?

 
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Posted by on January 16, 2012 in Dinner, food, What I'm eating

 

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