Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Confession of the slacker

I haven't being updating my blog lately. I guess I just lost the momentum after I stopped blogging for a few days. Also, I thought I could do more "life-enriching" stuff, like reading, when I was offline. But I was wrong! I ended up spending most of my time on youtube, the addictive Hongkong series people uploaded kept making me to go back for more. And the book that I started two weeks ago was still lying at the spot I left it, collecting dust. So this is what I have been doing lately.

Luckily for me, and for OCT, dinners were still streaming out readily from kitchen. I managed to try a few new recipes the past weeks and are planning for more in the coming weeks! But before that, let me recall what I have made last week.

A batch of sao pao that leaks, unfortunately. So my quest for the ultimate sao pao hasn't ended yet. There were tasty though. But I need to work on the dough, so that it will not burst open again in the oven. Initially I thought it's either because I didn't seal them tight or I didn't poke holes on top of the pie, so pressure built up and it burst. But the second experiment that involved the same dough, but with apple pie filling proved that it's none of the above. My mum guested I may have overworked the dough or the oven temperature was too hot. Or maybe the dough was intended for quiche not turnover, etc. I decided to look for another recipe. I have given the dough enough chances, so it's time for it to go.One night, we had lemon horseradish fish cake. You can't see the horseradish from the picture because they were subtly mixed into the fish cake. OCT who didn't know what he was eating and raved about this dish. I got this recipe from Oct issue of Everyday Food. You can also freeze the patties individually and cook them on another occasion. Say when you have special guests over for dinner. Of course you can get this kind of stuff from the grocery store's freezer section, but at least you know what you put in the fish cake and how long it has been frozen. And it's a flexible recipe. You can use any fish here, I think. All you need to do, is to first roast the fish in the oven for 15-20 minutes until it's cooked. Then use a fork to flake it, and add mayo, prepared horseradish, lemon juice, some chopped parsley, eggs, bread crumbs, and salt and pepper to taste. Form them into small cakes and coat with extra bread crumb and they can be cooked immediately, or freeze for another day. I know the instructions are lame, so if you are really interested, drop me a comment, and I will type out the recipe. :)Tuesday night, I had a suddenly craving for sushi, so I made some for myself. But I overestimated the amount and ended up having 5.5 rolls! It's going to be my Tuesday dinner and Wednesday lunch and dinner. I brought 2 rolls to school so that I could have lunch with OCT on Wednesday, but we changed our minds when the lunch hour approached and went for the nearby Greek restaurant for gyro and roast leg of lamb. So the sushi was left in OCT's lab. I asked him to give some to his colleagues, but he was a bit skeptical about my sushi. As a result, he decided to taste the sushi first before offering to anybody. Good for him! He ended up polishing up more than half of the sushi I brought! And of course he shared the rest proudly with his colleagues, including his Japanese colleague. Later he told me that sushi wasn't as awful as he imagined. And he thought my sushi was pretty tasty too! Great improvement for someone who doesn't like seaweed, vinegar, pickle radish and avocado. hahaha.

Finally, I made a batch of espresso walnut tiles for the Friday meeting last week. It was basically espresso walnut brownie, with cream cheese and chocolate frosting. We had a lot from one recipe, which was enough for 2 labs (one for his lab and another for the collaborator's lab, since they were having meeting on Friday too) and some leftover for us. Using almost a pound of bittersweet chocolate, these treats were really yummy. I gulped down a few pieces myself because the temptation was simply too great!

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