Tuesday, July 26, 2005

MEME-The Cook Next Door!

I got tagged by Cooking Diva
and she have other great food blog: Panama Gourmet
. Thank you Melissa, my friend!

Who started this thread? One of my favorite food blogs is: Delicious Days
and here is my two cents message for you: Thank you for starting this meme - and for hosting it in your beautiful home. I love to read food blogs and makes me feel part of the community. Very creative idea and I'm so surprised to see growing tree of food bloggers!!! I want to write beautifully and creatively like you!

What is your first memory of baking/cooking on your own?
I think it was when I was 9 years old, my grandma's sister Maile Taketa bought me three packages of panko flakes. I never understood why she brought these for me and she told me to help her out to cook food at her house. it was right next to my grandma's and she taught me how to slice ahi fish and dipped them in the eggs. Then put them in another bowl with panko flakes and fried them in dutch pan. We had fun, made a big mess in her kitchen and yeah, those fried breaded panko ahi pieces were so delicious! Her encouragement led me to become a good cooker while I was very young.

Who had the most influence on your cooking?
Hard to say because I comes from a long line of wonderful and strong women in my family and they always were there to cook everything together for special occasions. They always whipped up anything together! In the house, there was always Hawaiian music and they sang while they cooked. My old aunty played ukulele and others took their turn to pay ukulele. So much aloha in the kitchen! I learned the most about cooking was in the house and I watched grandmas, aunties and mommy cook, something magical about such as they would turn a whole fish or a whole chicken into Ono Ono (delicious) meal.

Do you have an old photo as “evidence” of an early exposure to the culinary world and would you like to share it?
Yes, I would share some of them with you and I have many old photos of Hawaiian Luaus but sadly, I don't have them with me and my mother have most of them at her home in other island. Even, she had some photos of me, did part of cooking-the luau, barbecuues, and any kind of cooking both inside or outside of the house.

Mageiricophobia - Do you suffer from any cooking phobia, a dish that makes your palms? sweat
Actually, I don't have any problems with cleaning any seafood, tripes, livers or pig parts. I'm used to do that because my father used to be a boar hunter nor my grandfather took me out to fishing on weekends so I had to clean out all those fish scales and what. I'm used to pluck all those feathers off on these dead chickens and boiled them..well...I grew up on farm.

What would be your most valued or used kitchen gadgets and/or what was the biggest let down?

Rice cooker and set of Japanese chef's knives from Japan are my most valued tools. I use rice cooker daily and I don't use these knive babies unless they are necessary to use.

Believe me or not but any kitchen utensils that I buy at 99 cents store, they really are fantastic to work with and they never give me any trouble! They also last longer than expensive utilities..I'm not kidding.

Name some funny or weird food combinations/dishes you really like - and probably no one else does.

I don't know about you guys but I grew up in mutlicultured community, I'm used to eat everything. When I was a kid, I used to love to eat mixed scrambled eggs, rice, spam, kimchee and two dashes of shoyu sauce in a bowl for breakfast almost daily.

As in high school, I used to make teriyaki sloppy dogs with beans and tofu and put them on the sweet portuguese buns...I'm telling ya that this was so good and now, I'm thinking about it..mmmm

What are the three edibles or dishes you simply don't want to live without?
Or course, rice, eggs and poki! If you don't know what is poki then here is the photo:

A favorite treat of Hawaii is poke. It is similiar to sashimi, raw fish, but it is the leftovers of the fish. It is mixed with shoyu, onions and green onions. Ahi is a yellowfin tuna, but other fish can be used. It is a great pupu, snack, and a favorite of many local residents of Hawaii.

Your favorite ice-cream.
Green Tea is my most favorite ice cream in the whole world and of course, azuki beans ice cream is another favorite. I'm part Asian, that's why.

You will definitely never eat...
That would be SNAILS!!! I heard that a lot of people said that it's really good and I don't care if they are good but if that happens, I will just leave them for others to snack em'!

Your own signature dish...
I have so many signature dishes....let me see....Chicken Vegetable Stir-Fry I am an artist in the kitchen and I choose my favorite vegetabless. I decide colors and textures of this stir-fry dish. Good thing, my children are growing up in the community of various cultures so they can eat anything!!!

Okay, time for me to tag three food bloggers for this meme and I hope that they haven't been tagged yet:
1. The Food Palate

2. Eat Stuff

3. Cook's Journal

These people are very creative food writers and I want to be like them =-)

Sunday, July 10, 2005

Calamari Strips!

"My mom always cooked this recipe when I was a kid: deep fried calamari. This is one of our family's favorite foods. Simple yet very delicious. When my children and I went to Big City Diner and I ordered Thai Calamari strips; *gosh* these tastes are exactly like my mom's! That was my pupu on July 4th and I got recipe from my friend's boyfriend who is cheif assistant there. Ohhh..this is so good, even with Wasabi/Honey sauce...mmmmmm it is so delicious!

Pupu on July 4th

Thai Calamari
8 calamari, under tens size
1 tbsp parsley, flakes
2 tbsp olive oil

Thai Vinaigrette
1/2 cup olive oil
2 tbsp wine vinegar
1 tsp lemon, juice
1 tbsp finely minced lemon, grass
1 tsp finely minced green onion

Thai Calamari
Clean calamari, leaving tube intact.

Slice bottom of tube length ways into 1/2 inch strips, leaving strips attached to top of tube. These will curl during cooking, resulting in each tube resembling a chrysanthemum shape.

Toss in parsley flakes and olive oil.

Heat grill to medium-high heat and sear calamari tubes on each side for about 1/2 a minute.

Stand tubes up and grill for approximately two minutes. Finished calamari should look slightly opaque.

Top dress with Thai vinaigrette and serve on platter