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Chicken Congee

Congee is another one of those meals that can be easily made with some leftover ingredients. In fact, I don’t recommend making this if you don’t have some leftover rice already in the fridge, it just works better. Traditionally congee is made with white rice, but I used brown rice because it is what I usually eat at home. However, I wouldn’t get carried away and use just any kind of rice because a short grain type of rice is going to work best. Congee is best during cold weather months and when you are not feeling well. It will cure the common cold.

Ingredients

2 cp Cooked Brown Rice (cooled preferably leftover)

1 qt Low Sodium Chicken Stock

2 cp water

1 small yellow Onion diced

2 clove garlic chopped

½ Roasted Chicken (cooled and shredded)

¼ cp Maggi

Salt and Pepper to taste

Green onions sliced

Sesame oil

Instructions 

  1. In a pot on medium heat, add onions, garlic and  sauté until translucent and fragrant.
  2. Add rice, chicken stock and stir to combine. Set pot on a low simmer and stir every 15 minutes for approximately 1 hr.
  3. Add water, chicken, Maggi and season lightly with salt and pepper. Continue to simmer and stir every 15 minutes for another 30-45 minutes.
  4. When rice is bloomed and the congee looks rich and silky almost like soupy oatmeal consistency then it is ready. Add seasoning of salt (or more Maggi) and pepper to taste as necessary and serve while hot.
  5. Garnish with scallions, sesame oil and drizzle of soy sauce or Maggi. Serve and enjoy.
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Seared Blackened Tofu Balsamic Salad

Sometimes when I’m scrounging through the odd pairing of ingredients in my house, I come up with weird sounding recipes that surprising turn out well. That’s how this one came recipe came about. I had tofu, mixed greens, red onion and I almost always have ingredients to make a balsamic vinaigrette. The only thing I felt this dish was lacking was tomatoes. Either way, this was delicious and I would definitely make it again.

Ingredients

Blackened Seasoned Tofu

1 Firm Tofu 15 oz package

1 Tbsp Cayenne

1 Tbsp Paprika

1 Tbsp Black Pepper

1 tsp salt

Balsamic Salad

½ Red Onion Sliced Thin

1 Clove minced garlic

1 tsp Dijon Mustard

1 Tbsp Honey

¼ cup Balsamic Vinegar

¾ cup olive oil

2 Cups prepared Mixed Salad Greens

Caramelized Red Onion

  1. Slice ½ of a red onion thinly
  2. Add oil to a med-high heat pan then add onions
  3. Continue to cook and stir red onions until translucent with a caramelized texture, then set aside.

Blackened Tofu

  1. Cut firm tofu into 1” x 4” blocks and dry on paper towels
  2. Mix together Paprika, Cayenne, Black Pepper and Salt.
  3. Spread blackened seasoning on all sides of the tofu until completely covered.
  4. Put olive oil in a hot skillet med-high heat and carefully sear tofu until both sides are darkly browned.
  5. Set aside on paper towel when done

Balsamic Vinaigrette

  1. Add minced garlic, honey, mustard and balsamic to a mixing bowl and season with salt and pepper.
  2. Slowly drizzle in olive oil while mixing vigorously to emulsify the vinaigrette.
  3. Taste and adjust seasoning if needed.

Assemble

  1. Add caramelized onions to balsamic vinaigrette and mix together to coat.
  2. Add mixed greens toss together with dressing, taste for seasoning and adjust if necessary.
  3. On a plate, carefully place greens on the bottom, then onions then place blackened tofu on top.
  4. Serve and enjoy….
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Ramen Danbo Review

With the ever growing amount of Ramen restaurants in the Seattle area, Ramen Danbo is my new favorite. They have locations in Vancouver BC, Capitol Hill Seattle and coming soon to Brooklyn NY. Even though they are expanding their footprint and it doesn’t seem like an exclusive restaurant, it also proves they’re doing ramen right.

RamenDfront
Ramen Danbo Capitol Hill Seattle WA

I love the flavors of Ramen Danbo’s broth, chashu and noodles combines. You will not get served an over-cooked egg here, you can sense their attention to detail they take when making their ramen. Nothing turns me off more than when I get served a hard-boiled egg with my ramen.

The only thing I find unfortunate with Ramen Danbo compared to other ramen restaurants is how they charge you to customize your ramen if you want the extras to get it the way you want it. Obviously this can get pricey the more you add-on.

I had the Miso Rekka Ramen with soft-boiled egg, nori and kikurage (Pictured above). You also choose the noodle thickness, firmness and type of broth. Even with the added charges I left Ramen Danbo happy because I got everything just the way I wanted and everything tasted great. If you are ever near one of their locations give them a try, you won’t be disappointed. Keep in mind, they do not take table reservations, this is a very-much first come, first serve style of dining.

http://ramendanbo.com/

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HB Beverage Co. Review

Depending on where you live, you might notice fresh juice and Acai bowl shops are becoming more popular. Although, finding a good one isn’t always that easy. My favorite shop that I’ve tried so far, happens to be a 5-minute drive from my home.

HB Beverage Co. started up as a food truck then moved into their brick and mortar shop off NE 124th ST. in Kirkland WA after they gained some popularity. I’ll admit, I never got the chance to try them when they were in the food truck, I would drive by them daily on the way to work and see the line of people getting their juice and bowl fix. I was actually on a date with this girl who was gushing about how much she loved them (maybe the date might have gone better if I just took her there) then I decided to give it a try. Like most of my dates, it didn’t work out, but I did fall in love with HB beverage co. I was almost going once a week in the summer because it’s so good on a hot day but don’t get me wrong, they’re great in the colder months too.

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My favorites are the Acai and Dragon Bowl, sometimes add peanut butter. Another favorite is the ginger, cayenne, turmeric, lemon shot. One shot will wake you right up and tastes great.

They also have seasonal items like the Yam-Yam bowl (Pictured Left) with sweet potato, banana, cashew-cream which I was skeptical of, but it was amazing.

If you’re in the area for breakfast, lunch or snack, give them a try.

 

 

HB Beverage Co

 

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Kombucha 2nd Fermentation Flavors

Pineapple, Mango, Ginger and Blueberry, Strawberry

Start by completing your 1st step of making your Kombucha 7+ day process. Once the kombucha is ready to bottle, prepare your flavorings. I always keep bags of frozen mixed fruit (usually with strawberry, mango, pineapple and blueberries) that I use to make protein shakes in the morning. Since I already have them in the freezer, it’s convenient to start the 2nd fermentation for kombucha.  I also make sure to buy fresh ginger root at least a day before I’m ready to bottle.

Using spoon, peel ginger root. Then chop ginger into bite size pieces and put in a blender. Add ¼ cup frozen mango and pineapple. Fill about halfway up the fruit with water (approx. ¼ cup), add 1 tsp vanilla extract and 2 Tbsp of organic sugar then blend together. If you have a ninja or nutria-bullet style smaller blender, I find those work best.

For the next flavor take ¼ cup frozen strawberries and ¼ cup blueberry and put in a blender. Add cold water until about halfway up the side of the fruit to help blend with 2 Tbsp of organic sugar. Blend well and taste if the sweetness is to your liking then adjust if necessary.

Spoon each mix about 1 inch in each of the bottles. This should yield about 3 bottles of each flavor in 18oz bottles. Or if you have larger grolsch style bottles, do 1 each. Fill the bottles with your kombucha and let ferment 2-3 days burping the air each day so you do not have any explosions or loss of product when you are ready to drink.

IMG_6798.jpgYou can drink as is, or strain. I prefer to strain because it is easier to drink and the flavor for me is just better. Enjoy…