Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Chinese Pork Egg Rolls

Wednesday, February 26th, 2014

Pork Egg Rolls

Because I’m always cooking for one during the week, I usually stick to simple proteins and veggies or soups and crock pot meals that can be enjoyed all week. As you would guess, that sometimes limits my creativity at the grocery and in the kitchen. So whenever I go home for the weekend, and know I’ll be cooking for a crowd, I try one of the more complicated recipes from my “to make” list.

Although always tempted to cook Mexican (my love of tacos truly knows no end), I decided to change things up this weekend and try my hand at Chinese Pork Egg Rolls. I had been eyeing a Martha Stewart recipe for some time but knew it yielded around 16 rolls, far too many for a single girl to eat throughout the week. Knowing the combination of fried goodness + spicy pork would be especially pleasing to my dad and boyfriend, I decided it was the perfect choice to feed the fam.

These egg rolls turned out better than I could have ever expected. Our group agreed they were better than any restaurant we’d tasted and far supreme over any frozen option at the grocery. They were fun and easy to roll and I used my mom’s Fry Daddy which produced perfectly golden and crisp results. The original recipe says the rolls can be frozen before frying, but my family gobbled them down too quickly to save any for later.

Because the filling can be prepared in advance, these make for an impressive appetizer at your next party or family dinner. Who makes homemade egg rolls? “You do,” should be the answer! I served mine simply with store-bought sweet and sour sauce, soy and spicy mustard. However, our group thought they would be delicious dunked in a spicy barbeque sauce, too. On the side I made heaps of white rice and stir-fried snap peas, broccoli, red and yellow peppers, onion and baby bok choy.

Pork Egg Roll Ingredients

Shredded CarrotsShredded CabbageIMG_1866IMG_1867IMG_1868Rolls all ready to go!IMG_1871Fried Pork Egg Rolls

Adapted from Martha Stewart

Ingredients:

  • ¼  cup soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon light brown sugar
  • 1 medium Napa cabbage, shredded
  • 5 medium carrot, shredded
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
  • 1 pound ground pork, I prefer a spicy mix!
  • 6 scallions, thinly sliced
  • Large handful cilantro, thinly sliced
  • 16 egg roll wrappers (found in the produce/refrigerated section at the market, usually near the tofu and meat-substitute section)
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • Salt and pepper
  • 6 cups (48 ounces) vegetable oil

For serving (optional):

  • Additional cilantro for garnish
  • Store-bought sweet and sour sauce
  • Spicy mustard
  • BBQ sauce—have not tried, but think it would make a tasty partner!

 

Directions:

Whisk together soy sauce, rice vinegar and sugar. Set aside. Heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium heat and add cabbage, carrots, garlic and ginger. Season lightly with salt and pepper. Cook until carrots are slightly tender and cabbage has just begun to wilt, around 3 minutes.

Raise heat to high and add pork and soy mixture. Cook until pork is no longer pink and all liquid has evaporated. Ensure all liquid has evaporated, as you don’t want soggy egg rolls! This should take around 10 minutes. Remove from heat, add scallions and cilantro. Refrigerate mixture for at least an hour and up to overnight.

Assemble egg rolls:

Lay one wrapper on a cutting board with one point facing towards you. Keep all other wrappers under a damp cloth until ready to use. Place around 1/3 cup of pork mixture into the center of the wrapper. Using a pastry brush, coat the edges of the wrapper in egg wash. Fold the point closest to you towards the center over the pork. Fold both side corners toward the center. They do not have to meet perfectly. At this point it should resemble an open envelope. Tightly roll to close the wrapper and ensure it is sealed. Be sure to keep the wrappers tight and sealed—as they can explode or oil can seep inside when frying if not rolled tightly. Fry in small batches. In order to keep egg rolls warm and crisp until serving, keep them on a parchment lined cookie sheet in the oven at about 250 degrees.

IMG_1870

Asian-Style Slow Cooker Wings

Friday, February 7th, 2014

Something amazing happened on our plane ride back from Florida.

After exhausting his stock of “manly” magazines, Andrew tore into my latest Food Network issue and starting skimming. That’s not the shocking part, however. What really threw me for a loop was when he returned the copy to me… with dog-eared pages. “Yeah… those Asian wings look good. Will you make them?” I stared back in shock. This was coming from the man who couldn’t decide between peanut butter or jelly. Who rarely cared what I put on his plate as long as it wasn’t “too weird or healthy.” Who never cared what we split for the appetizer. Who always “forced” me to pick the restaurant (Okay… yes, I was going to pick the restaurant regardless.) Now all of a sudden h e’s dog-earing pages in a cooking magazine? The foodie Gods were sending me a sign… I HAD to make these wings.

So after reading the recipe myself, I decided it was a good starting point… but needed some adapting. With Super Bowl Sunday just a couple weeks away, these wings would soon have a shining debut.

Come Super Bowl Sunday, I’d never split full wings before, so Andrew and I had a funny time figuring out how to cleanly split the drumstick from the wing,  but after a few, we got the hang of it. I’d recommend using a heavy, sharp knife as opposed to kitchen shears. It seemed easier to locate the cartilage and cut at the exact joint.

Now I LOVE anything that can be tossed in the slow cooker, so these were an instant favorite. Just toss these puppies in and let them soak up all the yummy saucy goodness. I am all about that. Plus the sweet and salty aromas filled the house for hours and caused many a grumbling stomach. There were some drawbacks, however. When making these wings again, I’ll cut down on the slow cooker time and would consider flash-frying them for added crispness at the end.

End result? These wings were gone before the game even started. I’d call that a success! Stay tuned for when I make these wings again. I’m excited to experiment with the cooking times in hopes of a crispier end result. But until then they’re stilly really, I mean really, tasty.

IMG_1477IMG_1479IMG_1481IMG_1480IMG_1478IMG_1476

Asian-Style Slow Cooker Wings

Adapted from Rachael Ray

Ingredients:

  • 4lbs chicken wings
  • 1 cup soy sauce
  • 1 cup honey
  • 1/3 cup sriracha
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • Zest of 1 lime
  • 1 tablespoon garlic
  • Large handful of cilantro, chopped as garnish

Directions:

In the bowl of a slow cooker, combine soy sauce, honey, sriracha, lime juice, lime zest and garlic. Whisk until well blended. If using whole wings, breakdown the wings into drumsticks and wings, ensuring to remove the wing tip.  Add the wings to the slow cooker, stirring to evenly coat. Add chicken broth if wings are not completely submerged. Cover and cook on high for 3 hours. Preheat the broiler. Place wings on a foil-lined baking sheet and broil until crispy, about 5 to 10 minutes. Keep an eye on them… so they don’t burn. Sprinkle with cilantro to serve and don’t forget a tall stack of napkins!

Goat Cheese Sprinkle Cookies

Sunday, January 12th, 2014

Two of my friends celebrated their joint birthdays this weekend. As unfortunately timed as possible, I am currently on an antibiotic that causes what the pharmacist called “instantaneous sickness” if you mix with alcohol. So what to do when you can’t drink with your best friends on their birthday? Make cookies.

IMG_1164

But not just any cookie. My sober-self really went all out on this one. I used a recipe from Love and Olive Oil that features goat cheese. Goat cheese?! Yes. Goat cheese.

Now I’m both a proponent of goat cheese and sweet + savory combinations but this one sounded bonkers. I did a bit more thinking and realized, however, that the perfect, ooey-gooey oh-so-delicious sugar cookies always ends with a tiny bit of tang. Some bakers use cream cheese to achieve  that final flavor note, this recipe uses a personal fave, goat cheese.

IMG_1165

So after I spent an afternoon or two pondering this crazy coupling, I decided I was game. The night of the party, while my other friends got gussied up and ready to go out, I rolled up sprinkle-covered cookies in my kitchen. I arrived at the party with a plate full of cookies, while everyone else took shots in the corner. (Yeah, welcome to my life)

Luckily, the cookies were a true crowd-pleaser. As I compensated my lack of drink-in-hand with multiple cookies-in-hand, I passed them around before finally serving as taxi cab to the bars. Oh and the next morning? Instead of a headache and  a grumpy attitude…. I found a few sprinkles in bed!

Goat Cheese Sprinkle Cookies

Happy Halloween!

Friday, October 25th, 2013

If I’m DIY Supergirl… then that makes my mom DIY Superwoman. And after this adorable Halloween treat DIY, she is living up to her name.

When I got home to Indianapolis this weekend, I found these monster donuts on the kitchen counter. My mom started with a simple box of donuts from our favorite place, The Donut Shop, in Indy. She added some simple candies, googly eyes and monster teeth. The result? Spooktacular, of course.

Hope you are all enjoying your Halloween festivities. Are you dressing up this year?

Halloween Donuts