Carrot Craze

It’s finally happening. Culinary school. This week, I began my first course of my culinary program. I was excited, yet nervous. Watching the live and prerecorded videos and reading the material helped prepare me for the new cutting technique I learned, as well as the lab assignment I had to cook.

I learned about the oblique/roll cut this week. To accomplish this technique, one cuts the carrot in a 45-degree angle and then rolls the carrot 180-degrees and repeats the process again. The purpose of this cut is add dimension and to evenly cook the carrots since they will be cut at relatively the same size.

The featured dishes I made for this week’s assignment were carrots vichy and carrots purée. I started with the carrots vichy first. The dish entailed: carrots, sugar, unsalted butter, salt, and water. It was a very simple dish to make. The carrots are barely covered in water and are brought to a boil. Once they’ve reached boiling point, they are to be brought down to a simmer until the liquid nearly evaporates. The carrots should then become tender and soft. The liquid will form into a glaze. The dish can be garnished with fresh parsley. Black pepper is a must. And then the best part- tasting. It was delightful!

Moving onto the purée. It required the same steps as the vichy; same ingredients as well, minus the sugar. After the carrots are tenderized, they are to be strained. Save the boiled carrot water. The cooked carrots are put into a food mill, mesh strainer, food processor, or blender to purée. I used a food processor. To create a smooth purée texture, pour some of the boiling carrot water to the mix. The purée tasted excellent. It was smooth, creamy, and velvety. Yum!

I’m excited to share this journey with y’all. Stay tuned for next week’s dish.

Be safe,

FS x

Wear Green; Don’t Get Pinched!

Happy Belated St. Patrick’s Day! I hope everyone had a safe and fun celebration despite us still being in a pandemic. The pandemic in Hawai’i is improving. Bars recently have gotten the green light to reopen again. Of course, with precautions and abiding by CDC guidelines. We have a few Irish pubs in the downtown/Chinatown area that were happy to open in time for St. Patty’s Day.

It’s tradition in my family to eat fresh corned beef and cabbage (see featured image), plus carrots and potatoes during the week of St. Patty’s Day. Yum! My dad makes the best Irish meal. I always look forward to eating this. It’s so delicious! I love drizzling mustard all over my dish. Perfecto!

In an article I read on Martha Stewart’s website, the Irish actually eat bacon (aka ham) and cabbage (Vaughn, 2020). Corned beef became a popular ingredient to this staple dish because it was cheaper than bacon back in the late 19th and early 20th centuries when the Irish came to America (Vaughn, 2020). Very logical. Well, I’d take fresh corned beef over ham. I’m not so much of a ham and pork person.

I wear green on March 17th to avoid getting pinched. I also have shamrock earrings and a necklace that I’m always excited to sport during this time of year. It’s said that leprechauns are a reason why people wear green on St. Patty’s (Davidson, n.d.). The tradition says wearing green makes you undetectable to the leprechauns, as they like to pinch anyone they can see (Davidson, n.d.). Those rascals! Some people believe the color green will bring good luck, while others wear it pay tribute to their Irish heritage (Davidson, n.d.).

Happy Spring! May this season blossom with new beginnings, new goals, new dreams, and new life.

Bloom where you’re planted,

FS x

References:

Davidson, R. (n.d.). St. Patrick’s day. https://kids.nationalgeographic.com/celebrations/article/st-patricks-day

Vaughn, K. (2020). How corned beef and cabbage became a St. Patrick’s day staple. https://www.marthastewart.com/7690010/corned-beef-cabbage-st-patricks-day-history

Ground lamb and turkey squash stew

Happy Spring!

In light of a new season, I made a yummy squash stew with ground lamb and turkey and barley rice from Japan. I was inspired by this recipe.

Ingredients used:

  • Ground lamb
  • Ground turkey
  • Large onion
  • Garlic
  • Sprigs of thyme
  • Kale
  • Carrots
  • Kosher salt
  • Garlic salt
  • Pepper
  • Garlic pepper/powder
  • 1.5 bottle of beer (I used Miller Lite)
  • Butternut squash
  • Chicken stock (no salt)
  • Barley rice
  • Flour for thickening

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Barley rice from Daiso in Japan.

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Ta da! A very tasty stew.

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I wish I had bought more of this rice. It was so delicious!

A healthy, yummy dinner just in time to welcome spring! I was very pleased with this dish.

Now that Honolulu has Daiso, I hope to find this rice there. It was to-die-for!

 

Gotta love them stir fries!

Happy Sunday, almost October, and Fall!

I love stir fries! I love cooking this dish, too. It’s simple and healthy for ya. I made a teriyaki ground turkey breast rice bowl. It was bomb! Enjoy the videos.

This entrée is inspired by: https://www.yellowblissroad.com/teriyaki-turkey-rice-bowl/

The following ingredients that made this wonderful dish are:

  • Ground turkey breast (ground turkey is fine, too)
  • Rice (any type of rice. I used a mix of quinoa, wild, basmati, jasmine, and white rice)
  • Shoyu (soy sauce)
  • Garlic powder
  • Black pepper
  • Brown sugar
  • Garlic salt
  • Himalyan pink salt
  • Cornstarch (for thickening of the sauce)
  • Red wine vinegar

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Ingredients and seasonings

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Da final product! Whoo hoo!

Have a great week!

FS

Gimme some brown suga!

Happy Sunday! My apologies for the hiatus. You know how life is- crazy! I hope to post entries more often. I do have my social media platforms available for viewing and commenting (Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter). I try to post pictures regularly on those platforms.

A couple months ago, I made some brown sugar chicken in a Crock Pot. I used the time-lapse video feature on my phone. That is my favorite now! Check it out. It’s pretty cool.

Ingredients used:

  • Chicken thighs (you can use whatever piece of your choosing)
  • Carrots
  • Brussel sprouts
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Pepper
  • Himalayan salt
  • Brown sugar

Cooked on low heat for eight hours. You can also cook it on high heat, if you’re pressed for time.

Simple and easy. What’s left there to say?

Have a great week. I’ll be back!!!

FS~

Spring chicken soup before spring is over!

I saw this awesome spring chicken soup recipe while browsing my Facebook and I HAD to make it!

https://www.delish.com/cooking/recipe-ideas/a19992009/spring-chicken-soup-recipe/

Ingredients: (of course, as y’all know, I modified the recipe.)
1 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 large carrots, chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
1/2 lb. asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1″ pieces
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp. dried oregano
1 tsp. dried thyme
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
6 c. low-sodium organic chicken broth
1 whole chicken, shredded
2 sprigs thyme
1/4 c. lemon juice
2 cans of Southwest corn
Lemon slices, for garnish
My ingredients for this awesome soup!
Directions:
  1. In a large pot over medium heat, heat olive oil. Add onion, carrots, celery, and asparagus, and cook until soft. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, then add oregano, salt, and pepper.
  2. Pour in chicken broth and thyme. Bring to a boil then add chicken and lower heat. Let simmer until chicken is cooked through, 10 minutes.
  3. Remove chicken from pot and shred with two forks. Add chicken, lemon juice, and corn to pot. Cook until warmed through, 5 minutes. Garnish with lemon slices and parsley to serve.

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This soup was amazing! It lasted my family and I for three days!

I made pesto grilled cheese sandwiches to go along with the hearty soup.

The homemade pesto recipe is super simple:

  • Basil (Thai basil is also fine to use)
  • Pine nuts
  • Olive oil
  • Garlic cloves

Blend ingredients in a food processor or blender. It is so good! The best pesto I’ve ever eaten!

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I wanted to try Muenster cheese. It reminds me of Swiss. It was very yummy!

Bringing out an old friend… Happy Cinco de Mayo!

Happy Cinco de Mayo!!

In honor of this holiday, I was inspired to make some grinds with tequila! This time, with lamb shanks, baby!

I made orange-tequila lamb shanks.

I tweaked the recipe, as I always do.

Ingredients (Foodnista Soul’s way):

Mmm, slow cookers are one of the best inventions ever!

Mama mia! Why haven’t I taken advantage of slow cookers more often in the past? I absolutely love it! My dad would occasionally make dinners in the Crock Pot and it would be soo delicious!

So, one weekend, I decided to make one of my dad’s Crock Pot dishes- chicken with Cream of Mushroom soup sauce. I added frozen mixed veggies, carrots, potatoes, and onions. Yum! I wanted to test out the slow cooker. Before I started my busy afternoon of errands, I put all of the ingredients in the Crock Pot and set the cooker to low for eight hours.  I started with the vegetables first. Chopped them up and put them in the pot. Then added chicken thighs and breasts, drizzled with extra virgin olive oil and seasoned with thyme, pepper, garlic and pepper seasoning, and Hawaiian salt. Finally, I added the Cream of Mushroom soup and diluted it with a little bit of water, so it wouldn’t be so thick. Stirred it to get the sauce evenly in the pot, covered it, set the timer, and left for the long day ahead.

When I returned home in the evening- violà! The chicken came out so tender and the dish amazing! This was served with egg noodles. Yummy! It was such a simple and easy dish. Just typing this and reminiscing at these pictures are making me hungry. I gotta go! Haha!

Have a great week!

~FS

Merry Christmas Eve- a perfect posting for the season!

Merry Christmas Eve and Happy Sunday! Almost two months ago, one of my dear friends got married at her dad’s cabin on the lake in Minnesota. We had a lovely, delicious dinner amongst family that I wanted to share. Perfect for the Christmas season.

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On her wedding evening, we had prime rib, with homemade mash, green beans, carrots, and sauteed mushrooms. Yummy! That piece of meat was HUGE! I tried my best to finish it all, but couldn’t. I was way too full. Too bad I couldn’t bring it home as leftovers to finish. Haha, back home to Hawaii.

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Carrot cake for dessert/their wedding cake! Yummy! Haven’t had carrot cake in so long!

What a coincidence, tomorrow we will be having prime rib for our Christmas dinner. Can’t wait! Be sure to lookout for another posting of that soon.

Have a beautiful Christmas with your loved ones. It’s my most favorite time of the year to celebrate with family.

Blessings,

FS~