Tag Archives: jalapeno

Soul Food in Union Square

2 Jun

It amuses me that there is a Union Square in NY and SF that are both great places to hang out, eat and shop. We drove to Union Sq. on Sunday and luckily found a parking spot. Parking is free on Sundays, which is great because it’s $3.50 an hour for metered parking and more for garages! We were hungry so we grabbed a snack. I treated myself to a Boudin jalapeno cheddar bread. They toasted it for me and it was really, really good.

mmm.. warm and crusty

I’m going to have to try to make these one day. So tasty. The jalapenos were pretty hot but manageable.

all the jalpaneos inside

I’m still looking for a bag but I’m being super picky. I might have to just buy online. Good thing Brian had a former co-worker to talk to while I shopped. One and a half hours was completely not enough time to shop for something specific though so I ended up not buying anything. I guess that’s a good thing. We had early reservations to have dinner at Farmer Brown’s. They feature organic soul food.

nifty entrance

I loved the ambiance and their service was excellent. The hostess had great fashion sense since she fit with the restaurant’s decor perfectly! Helps that she had a great body too! Okay, moving on… the menu was a glazed sheet metal clip board. As I said, this restaurant had great details.

the menu

They gave us delicious corn muffins that had bits of jalapenos in it. They were not spicy but had a great pepper flavor. These guys were addicting, especially with the apricot butter. At least I think it was apricot, it could have been peach or nectarines.

jalapeno corn muffins with apricot butter

I ordered the fried chicken because Brian’s friend recommended it. Unfortunately, I didn’t think it had a lot of flavor. The menu describes it as the “perfect” fried chicken. It was cooked perfectly with moist meat and crispy skin but it was lacking in flavor overall. It also wasn’t as salty as fried chicken should be? The collard greens were good with bits of bacon throughout. The macaroni and cheese was super rich. I ended up only eating the chicken and took the rest home for another meal.

fried chicken with macaroni and cheese and collard greens

Brian got the pulled pork sandwich. It had a lot more flavor than my dish but I didn’t like something in it. I’m not sure if it was the cole slaw or the bbq sauce. The chips looked flavorful but weren’t that strong in flavor either. Maybe I killed all my taste buds from that jalapeno bread before?? His friend got the catfish but I don’t know him well enough to take a picture of his food.

On Memorial Day, we went out to hunt for bikes and a bike rack. We ended up stopping by two walmarts because the bikes are really cheap there. Other than that, we normally hate shopping there because it’s so depressing (besides all the other issuse with walmart). We still haven’t bought anything yet because the bikes we liked were mountain bikes and had wide bars which don’t fit on normal trunk racks for sedans. I’ll have to do more research. We ended up meeting up with another friend who took us to a hole in the wall called House of Dumplings. It’s in a strip mall that has about 5 stores but it was really good home cooking. We got chow mein, 3-flavor dumplings and xiao long bao (soup dumplings). The chow mein was flavorful and had lots of beef and veggies but I don’t really like chow mein noodles. The 3-flavor dumplings had shrimp, pork and chives and were really good. The chives were strong and the skins of the dumplings were perfect. You could tell they’re handmade. The xiao long bao were okay. The flavor was strong in ginger and there was actually soup inside, which means they were pretty successful. The portions are big but cheap. If this place were closer, I would be going often. Sorry for lack of pictures, I was super hungry. =P

Chorizo Empanadas

18 Aug

Here’s the recipe for the chorizo empanadas I made for the potluck. I based it off of Kitchen Wench’s recipe!

Crust:
– 2 1/2 cup all purpose flour
– 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) cold butter, cubed
– 1 egg
– 1/2 cup milk
– 1/4 tsp salt
– 1 beaten egg to brush on top
Using your fingertips, smush the cold butter into the salt and flour until it resembles bread crumbs. You may use more butter for a flakier crust but I try to cut down on saturated fats. Mix in the egg and milk until a dough forms. If sticky, you may add more flour. Separate into two disks, wrap in plastic wrap and fridge until ready to use. I was rushing and put it in the freezer.

Filling:
– 1 lb chorizo (Spanish pork sausage)
– 1 cup chopped bell pepper (I had 2 small ones from my garden)
– 1 small onion, chopped
– 2 jalapenos, finely diced (I had a green and red one from my garden)
– 2 hard boiled eggs, chopped
– 1 tsp cumin
– 1 tsp garlic powder
– 2 tsp brown sugar
– 4 tsp crushed tomatoes with sauce

empanadas fillings
Veggies and eggs.

empanadas chorizo
Raw chorizo.

Directions:
1. Squish the chorizo out from their casings into a large hot pan. Use wooden spoon or spatula to break sausage into small pieces while cooking. Cook until fully cooked.
2. Add bell peppers, jalapenos and onions. Cook until softened and onions are translucent.
3. Add spices, sugar and tomato sauce.
4. Stir in eggs and remove from heat.
5. Let filling cool down to room temperature before filling.

empanadas filling
Fuzzy picture of the filling.

Assembly:
1. Roll out dough on floured surface. Use a bowl or cup to cut out rounds.
2. Place some of the filling in the center of the round.
3. Fold round to encase filling in a half circle shape. Crimp together the edges.
4. Brush with beaten egg for browning in the oven.
5. Bake at 400 degrees F for 25-30 minutes or until tops are browned.

empanadas
Two different sized empanadas.

empanadas inside
The yummy goodness inside.

Some recent food pics

23 Jul

Freshly picked jalapenos and tomatoes from my vegetable pots! The insides of the tomatoes were slightly green, probably weren’t completely ready yet but they were quite sweet! Made more jalapeno poppers with the peppers but baked them this time to avoid the oil. So yum.
fresh picked veggies

Mom made bread again. One pan is plain, the other has dried pork shreds inside.
bread two pans

This one has cinnamon sugar! Each roll is rolled with cinnamon sugar inside.
bread cinnamon rolls

Chocolate beef chili. Soo good. The chocolate flavor is barely there but makes it taste so much better. I cheated and used a packaged chili flavoring mix but that’s how I usually make it. I like consistency and it’s easy. Brown a pound of ground beef, add a chopped onion, chopped jalapeno pepper, a can of red beans, a small can of tomato sauce, a packet of chili flavoring and 3 teaspoons of cocoa powder.
chocolate beef chili

Two bentos and Tempura Jalapeno Poppers

11 Jul

My sister and I made bentos for lunch today. She made one to bring to school and I made one for our younger brother. It took quite a while but it was fun. They came out quite pretty I think considering this was my sister’s first time making a bento box.

My sister’s box:
Contents: bottom has ham and cheese flying pig on bed of rice and cucumber and carrot garden; top has dried cranberries, plum slices, cucumbers, chicken strips and a piece of chocolate.

IMG_2922

Here’s the one I made for my brother.
Contents: bottom has two mushroom caps with cheese, dried pork tamagoyaki (i make it with soba sauce and sweet soy sauce), and chunks of cucumber; top has cubes of colored and plain rice, ham, cucumber and carrot sticks.
IMG_2934
Close up:
IMG_2929

I went to the Sunrise Mart in Soho for the first time today. Sunrise Mart sold tons of Japanese groceries, snacks, drinks, cookware, bento boxes, prepared sushi and bento boxes to eat in store or for take out. It was great, the prices were cheap but they were reasonable. They even had prepackaged onigiri in different flavors for only $2 a piece! I highly recommend a visit. Check them out on yelp.com here.

So after having some spicy tuna sushi and a strawberry Calpico yogurt drink with a good friend of mine, I walked around and bought a tempura batter mix and panko (Japanese bread crumbs). I knew there were several jalapenos in my pot-garden that were ready to be eaten. So I went home and made jalapeno poppers – tempura style.

jalapeno poppers
There are two eggplants in there because I had extra batter left.

I didn’t measure anything but here’s what I did. I cut four large jalapenos in half after removing the stems and removed all the seeds and membranes with my BARE fingers. Unfortunately, I forgot this fact and touched my eye for the briefest of moments. Instantly I felt like my eye was on fire. My stupidity didn’t end there because while tearing up in pain, I removed my contact with my fingers instead of asking someone else to do it. This resulted in 100 times more stinging and pain. I had to stand with my eye pride open under running water for almost 15 minutes before it stopped burning. So this serves a warning to you.

Anyways, after that scenario, I mixed together about 4 tbsp cream cheese, 1/4 cup of shredded cheddar jack cheese, 1/2 tsp garlic powder, 1/2 tsp onion powder and a dash of salt. I filled the jalapeno halves with this cheesy mixture, dipped them in the tempura batter made from the mix, dredged them in panko and then fried them in oil until golden brown. I probably will make this again soon, maybe with different fillings. It was really good.