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‘easy’ Category

  1. Adobo Chicken

    August 7, 2016 by Dan

    Chicken adobo has become one of our go-to dishes over the past few years. It’s a simple recipe that can be quickly whipped up on the stove top but is also an excellent use for our slow cooker.

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    In The Adobo Road Cookbook, Marvin Gapultos describes ‘adobo’ as “the Filipino method by which any meat, seafood, fruit, or vegetable is braised in a mixture containing vinegar, bay leaves, garlic, black pepper, and salt.” In most cases today the salt is provided by a soy sauce, which for us is tamari. Much to our delight adobo is an extremely flexible recipe that encourages variation and experimentation. That is, mistakes are generally tolerated and we can vary things up.

    The following is our slow cooker version adapted from the Adobo Road Cookbook.

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  2. Nuoc Cham (Vietnamese Basic Dipping Sauce)

    August 1, 2012 by brett

    Nuoc Cham (Vietnamese Basic Dipping Sauce)
    This ubiquitous, must-have sauce unifies the different flavors in many a Vietnamese dish and makes the entire composition come together and “pop.” Nuoc cham can effortlessly pull together a dish, making it a godsend for anyone looking to get breakfast/lunch/dinner on the table ASAP. I have a small airtight container of this stuff in my fridge at all times.

    I generally serve this alongside cha gio (Vietnamese fried rolls) and drizzled over a haphazardly put together bun bowl – cooked rice vermicelli, raw, shredded lettuce, raw, julienned cucumbers, slices of pan-seared tofu or any cooked chicken/pork/beef/shrimp/fish, plus a sprinkling of fresh mint and Thai/Asian basil leaves.

    Nuoc cham is also a wonderful accompaniment to non-Viet-style dishes as well. I’ve drizzled it on corn tortillas filled with grilled fish, Viet-style pickles, julienned cucumbers, and a few springs of cilantro, and the result was tasty. Nation borders are but lines on a map; in the mouth and stomach, they don’t exist. (more…)


  3. Hippo Flatbread

    June 21, 2012 by brett

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    Flatbread plays an extremely important role in the cuisine’s of most cultures around the world. It is the building block, the basis, of many a meal worldwide. Flatbread fills the belly, nourishes the body, and feels good in mouth and hand in all its soft/chewy/crispy/crunchy glory. It can be eaten alone (it’s so convenient on the go — a great stroller snack), or it can accompany stews, curries, meats, veggies — whatever you like. Flatbread is like rice, the perfect white shirt, and the name Michael*: It goes with everything.
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  4. Chocolate Craze Spider Cake

    June 14, 2012 by brett

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    This was my son’s birthday cake this year. I was so happy he loved it!!! 🙂

    An old-fashioned term, “spider” refers to a cast iron skillet, which I use to make this cake; spiders are not an ingredient. 🙂 Pineapple Upside Down Cake is probably one of the best known spider cakes baked today.

    The use of vinegar and baking soda to provide the acid/basic-inspired rise of the cake, and the oddball directions to add liquid ingredients into three “troughs” or indentations in the dry mixture, followed by pouring water all over the top, provide unmistakable clues to the ancestry of this cake. This cake is a gluten- and allergen-free descendent of an American classic known by many names: Crazy Cake, Wacky Cake, Oil and Vinegar Cake.

    Typically, Crazy Cake is made in an 8″ or 9″ square pan, though I’ve seen it doubled into a 9″ x 13″ sheet cake creation as well. In the past, I’ve made my own gluten- and allergen-free version in a 5″x7″ Pyrex baking dish. (To see a lemon version, check out Lemon Craze.)

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  5. Jun Jiu Kao (Pearl Balls)

    May 10, 2012 by brett

    Pearl Balls

    Some days are meant for sitting on the sofa and eating bon bons. While I admit bon bons are incredibly tasty (I had them just once and even made it a point to sit on the sofa while eating them), more often than not, I’ll make jun jiu kao when I’m in need of a comfort food fix.

    Jun jiu kao, or pearl balls, are savory steamed pork meatballs coated with a layer of glutinous rice (rest assured, it’s gluten-free) that is chewy and satisfying. These tasty mouthfuls are also a nice dumpling-type alternative when I want a dumpling but don’t feel like rolling out wrappers. Jun jiu kao are easy to make, easy to make ahead, and easy to reheat. They are great eaten hot, warm, or at room temperature. They’re not too shabby straight out of the fridge, too! Pearl balls make a great snack but can also be served as part of a larger meal. They make for popular party finger food as well. (more…)


  6. Soy Milk

    April 28, 2012 by brett

    Ladle partly submerged in a pot of soy milk, which is ready to be put into the French press for filtering.

    Soy milk is a kitchen basic in our household. It’s good for drinking, but it’s also indispensable in the kitchen as an ingredient in many recipes. Soy milk is an excellent dairy substitute in cooking. It’s also a great egg substitute in recipes requiring the binding (though not rising) properties of eggs.

    My family enjoys eating Hippo Bread, pancakes, brownies, and other bread- and cake-type foods made with it. Soy milk’s by-product, okara, if cooked thoroughly during the soy milk making process, can be toasted in a dry pan and used as a healthy filler for meatballs, dumplings, and the like. (more…)


  7. “Catfish” Tofu

    April 6, 2012 by brett

    Catfish Tofu
    Tasty, easy, and fast, “Catfish” Tofu — which contains no catfish — is my primary go-to dish on nights when I’m too tired to do anything but am having one of those gotta-get-dinner-on-the-table-NOW-or-else-hungry-toddler-is-gonna-have-a-meltdown nights. (more…)


  8. Italian Sausage

    March 19, 2012 by brett

    Pizza
    I love this sausage recipe, which comes from Jeff Smith’s wonderful cookbook, The Frugal Gourmet, a companion to his PBS cooking show, which I grew up watching. I use this sausage primarily as a pizza topping, but it would be great over rice, in a red sauce — whatever strikes your fancy. The above is a photo of a pizza I made that incorporates the sausage as one of its many toppings. (more…)


  9. Chamorro Red Rice

    March 19, 2012 by brett

    FYI: I’m in the middle of updating this recipe. I’ve had too many disasters, so consider this recipe problematic prone for now. Will post again as soon as I can get it right and duplicate good results reliably. Thanks!

     

    This dish relies on annatto seeds, not tomato, for its distinctive orange-redness and smoky, earthy flavor. It’s a classic accompaniment to Chamorro-style barbecue at fiestas. Everyone adds their own touch to this dish: bacon, hot peppers, peas, etc. (more…)


  10. Caramelized Shrimp with Garlic and Shallots

    January 20, 2012 by brett

    Caramelized Shrimp with Garlic and Shallots

    This is a great recipe for home cooks who are short on time but happen to have frozen, deveined shrimp on hand. Get a pot cooking with rice, boil some greens in water seasoned with salt and oil (or peel and slice up fresh cucumbers and serve raw), cook this shrimp dish, and viola! Instant balanced meal.

    The distinctive combination of caramelized sugar, fish sauce, and shallots as well as the use of raw herbs to finish the dish alerts you of this dish’s Vietnamese heritage. The cooking technique is clearly Chinese.

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