Spicy veal liver pasta with mushrooms and spinach

After meatless Monday, I want meat. Meat, Meat, meatttttt!!!! But, I got no meat in the fridge, I found liver in my freezer. HA! Close enough, defrost it in the fridge since last night, so I was able to cook it after the day trip in Sacramento. (Yup, I am SLEEPYYYY…)

The good thing about this dish only took 20 mins to make. I can enjoy a good gin and soda with my bowl of lovely pasta. Yum!

Ingredients:
A small piece of veal liver, about 400g, cut into bite size
1/2 lb of white button mushrooms, cut into bite size
4 serrano peppers, thinly sliced
1 bag of baby spinach (500g)
1/3 bag of spaghetti

Direction:
In a big pot, cook the pasta in plenty of lightly salted boiling water, according to the package. Reserve 1/2 cup of pasta water.
Meanwhile, make the spicy liver mixture with mushrooms and spinach. Heat 2 tbsps of bacon fat in a skillet over medium heat. Add mushrooms and pepper, cook for about 5–7 mins, until it starts to turn brown. Season with salt and pepper and dried parsley.
Add the veal livers, stir them around in the mixture and cook for 3 mins. Add pasta, pasta water and spinach, cook for another 2 mins. Season to taste.

Optional: Top with Italian pickled vegetables (Giardiniera). And wash it down with gin and soda.

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Stuffed butternut squash with veggies and leftover rice

Ha! I am back! I have been eating, drinking, cooking but not posting. And my lazy add wanna start again tonight! While I need to wake up at 430am to catch a flight, but I am still typing at 1137pm. Wtf?!?! (Side note, I fell asleep and writing it again while waiting for my flight)

Anyhow, I made a lovely vegetarian dinner tonight and thinking that I have to share with everyone. #meatlessmonday. I adopted this recipe from pinterest but used whatever I have in the fridge. Super tasty!!

Original recipe: http://www.wellplated.com/stuffed-butternut-squash/

My version:

Ingredients:
1 small butternut squash, halved
1/2 cup of cooked rice (or whatever kind of grain you have)
1 bunch kale, stems removed and chopped
2 medium beets, cut into small cubes
1 medium zucchini, cut into small cubes
1/3 cup of cooked edamame, shells removed
1 red pepper, cut into small cubes
1 clove of garlic, minced
1 tsp each of tumeric, chili powder and mixed herbs (rosemary, thyme, etc)
2 tbsps of water
Spicy cheedar cheese, small chunks 

Directions:
Place a rack in the center of your oven and preheat the oven at 425F. Halve the butternut squash, scoop out the seeds, then arrange the halves on a baking tray, cut sides up. Drizzle with olive oil. Bake 50 minutes, just until the squash is fork tender. Remove from the oven and let cool. Reduce the oven temperature to 375 degrees.

While the squash is baking, cook all the stuffings in a large skillet, over medium heat. When the skillet is hot, add olive oil, minced garlic and zucchini, season with salt and pepper. Cook for 6 mins until golden. Stir occasionally.

Add kale and cook until wilted, about 4 mins. Stir in beets, water, mixed herbs, chili powder and tumeric then reduce the heat to medium low. Cook for another 10 mins. 

Add rice and stir until it’s all mixed in with the veggie mixture, cook for another 2 mins. Turn off the heat and add edamame and red pepper.

Once the squash is cool enough to handle, scoop out the flesh, leaving a 1/2-inch-thick border around the sides and a 3/4-inch border along the bottom. Stuff the filling into the squash halves, top with cheddar cheese and then return the squash to the oven. Bake at 375F until hot, about 10 mins. 

Steak and mushrooms ragu with carrot pasta

I have been on my lazy butt for a long time. Yes, super long time… not that I didn’t cook. I did! I cook almost every weekday. I just haven’t been writing.. I just take pictures, eat, drink, and repeat.

Tonight I was gonna do the same thing. Cook an amazing valentine’s day dinner, with sweat and blood (literally) and call it a night. But when I saw the picture I posted on IG… o well, I needa show you my great (bloody) dinner πŸ˜€

Ingredients – broil flank steak
1 pound flank steak
2 tbsps of apple cider vinegar
1 tbsp of rice vinegar
2 tbsps of mirin
1 tbsp of olive oil
3 tbsps of water
3 cloves of minced garlic
1 tsp salt
2 tbsps of finely chopped parsley and cilantro
1 tbsp of koji
1/2 minced apple

Mix them all together and marinade for 24 hours in the fridge. Turn it over every couple hours.
When you are ready to cook, take the steak out from the fridge 30 mins before cooking.
Set your broiler to its highest setting. Line a broiler pan with aluminum foil and spray with nonstick cooking spray.
Remove the steak from the marinade. Broil the steak 6 to 8 minutes per side, about 12 to 16 mins. I cooked mine for 14 mins and rest for 5 mins before slicing. It came out medium rare.

Ingredients – mushrooms ragu and carrots pasta
1 pound of mixed mushrooms 
3 green onions
1 Japanese spring onion 
2 tbsps of olive oil
1 tsp of dried mixed herbs (thyme, parsley and rosemary)
3 tbsps of sake
1/2 tsp each chili paste, white pepper and salt
2 carrots

Clean, trim and thinly slice the fresh mushrooms, and set them aside.
Thinly slice the green onion and the Japanese spring onion. Reserve the green and white part separately.
Use spiralizer to cut carrots and set aside.
Put the oil in a large pan and place over medium heat. When the pan is hot, add onions and heat to a slow sizzle and cook for 3 mins, stirring often.
Add all the mushrooms and spread them out. Sprinkle in the remaining salt, pepper, chili paste, mixed herbs and sake. Raise the heat a bit and cook covered for about 7 mins or until the sake is evaporated.
Stir in carrots and lower the heat. Cook for 3 mins. Top with reserve green parts of the onions.

It’s ready to serve!

Fried chicken 4 ways!!!

This week is Mr.D’s birthday, all he wants is fried chicken, so today, I fried 3 chicken and 4 duck legs (yup, why not?!?!?!)

Brine them all for a day in this:

1 cup of pickle juice
β…” cup kosher salt
β…“ cup sugar
3 cups of pineapple juice
5 cups of water

After that, marinade them 4 different ways for another day –
1. Indonesian
2. Korean
3. Pickle-brine
4. Jerk chicken

On the 3rd day, remove them from the marinade and let them dry for 2 hours in the fridge.
Fry them at 360F for 6 to 8 mins each, and fry them at 380F for 40 sec.

Stir fry duck with baked tofu, peppers and bean sproutsΒ 

This past Friday was great. I had time for some fun kitchen time. So I bought 3 chicken and 2 ducks. Butchered all of them, separate the parts for frying (fried chicken and ducks) and making broth. Rendered the duck fat from the skins, and I even saved some of the meat off the breasts for Mr.D’s lunch πŸ™‚ Yup. I tried to use every part of the animals.

About 20g of duck meat (thinly stripes)

1 small piece of tofu (thin stripes, I baked it with some olive oil and season with Japanese 7 spices blend)

3 sweet peppers (thinly stripes)

A handful of bean sprouts 

Marinade the duck in 1/2 tsp of soy sauce and dash of sugar for 10 mins.

In a pan, add a tsp of oil over high heat. Add duck to brown each side, about 45 sec each side. Add tofu and sweet peppers. Season with salt and pepper. Cook for 3 mins. Turn off the heat and add bean sprouts. Stir and let it sit for 3 mins.

And it’s ready to eat!!!

Tomatoes with veggies and eggs

It’s Sunday. It’s funday. And most importantly, it’s brunch day!!! But, there is a sad part… I had 3 slices of bacon only, shared by 2 people…. 1st world problem…

My brunch has these:

4 eggs

1/3 onion (small chunks)

2 tomatoes  (small chunks)

2 Persian cucumbers  (small chunks)

4 baby sweet peppers (small chunks)

3 slices of bacon

Bake bacon at 400F for 12 mins.

Use 1 tsp of bacon fat to cook onions until soften over medium heat. About 5 mins. Add tomatoes, season with salt and pepper and 2 tbsps of water. Cover and lower the heat, let it cook for 10 mins until stewy (yes, you know what I mean)

Add sweet peppers and cucumber into the stew. Cook for 3 mins. Make 4 small packages to fit the eggs in. Season with salt and pepper. Cover the lid and cook for 2 mins. Turn off the heat and let it rest for another 2 mins.

It’s ready to serve, with lots of bacon!!! (if you have it) and bloody mary, of course πŸ˜€

Turkey meatballs (but not low cal though)

Mr.D and I went to a wedding yesterday. The bride and groom were stunning, the food was great, “happy juice” were going around. Everyone had a great time, or maybe a little too much πŸ™‚ And yes, Mr.D was one of them. We had to leave early before it gets out of control…

Since we had such a great time last night (I am still tired from it), I really didn’t feel like getting grocery or even cooking. Easy enough, I got stuff in the fridge. Mix them all together, hopefully they come out good :p

Turkey meatballs 

1 lb of ground turkey

3 tbsps of mascarpone cheese

Finely minced a handful of fresh mint, basil, cilantro (or whatever you have on hand)

1 egg

5 tomatillo

5 cloves of pickled garlic 

4 tbsps of chicken broth 

1 tsp of agave

5 bird eye chili

Mix the first 4 items together. Season with salt and pepper. Form them into 1 to 1.5 inch balls. Put them in the fridge while making the sauce. 

Broil the tomatillo for 20 mins or until charged. Let them cool for 10 mins and blend the rest of the items (except meatballs) in the blender. Season with salt and pepper. 

Preheat the oven at 425F, line up the meatballs on a baking sheet and bake for 20 mins. Transfer them to a baking pan,  top with tomatillo sauce and bake for another 30 mins.