A break this week…

There was no cooking assignment for culinary school this week. We just had to fabricate a whole chicken and freeze all the parts. We’ll be using them for the next six weeks. Exciting! I can now say I’ve deconstructed a whole chicken. Yay!

I have to say, I didn’t enjoy the process. Working with raw meat, especially poultry grosses me out. I usually buy already cooked chicken or specific chicken parts (i.e., thighs and drumsticks). It’s much easier and cleaner to work with. As I was fabricating the raw chicken, all I could think about the entire time working was wanting to sanitize everything. Wash my entire kitchen with soap and hot water. I usually wear gloves when handling raw poultry, but I was advised not to wear gloves because it’s actually more dangerous. People are more prone to cutting themselves more easily when wearing gloves. Shucks! So, I had to use my bare hands. I washed them like I had OCD! Seriously! My fingers were pruned by the time I was done. I washed all my equipment and tools several times, as well as cleaned the counter and sink area multiple times. I had to make sure everything was sanitized. Salmonella, food poisoning, bacteria spread is NO JOKE! It’s important to practice safety and good hygiene, especially when working with raw poultry.

August is birthday month. I spent my birthday weekend in the kitchen and with family and friends. My loves! The perfect trio!

Last week, we celebrated my aunt’s birthday. We had the whole chicken with gravy, and carrots vichy and brussel sprouts for her bday dinner. My sister made Oreo-stuffed chocolate cupcakes for dessert. Yummmmm! In my featured image, I created a collage of all the yummy food I ate this weekend. My dad and sis made a feast for dinner. We had tossed salad, steak, chicken, Portuguese sausage, mashed potatoes with boiled eggs and olives, and shrimp and oyster tempura. Wow! We celebrated with strawberry, chocolate, lemon, and coconut cupcakes for dessert from Sam’s Club. Sam’s Club makes some pretty yummy cakes. My dear girlfriend took me out for brunch at the La Hiki at the Four Seasons at Ko ‘Olina. We went there two years ago and had a fulfilled delicious, out-of-this-world buffet brunch experience. However, since COVID, buffets have not reopened, and restaurants that once offered buffets, had to get creative. This restaurant created a pre-fixed brunch menu. The food was yummy, but you can’t beat that buffet. I can’t wait till the buffet reopens again. It was one of the best brunch buffets I’ve ever eaten at. I would love to take my family there to experience all that superlativeness.

Have a great week, All! Please stay safe. This pandemic is getting outrageous!

FS x

Seventeen of 20 Things 2020 Has Taught and Reminded Me + Comfort Food Made With Love

Happy Monday and last week of 2020! We’re in the home stretch! Let’s make the best of our remaining days of the year. I want to end the year strong! Let’s show 2020 what we’re made of!

The 17th fact that the year has taught and reminded me was:

17. Every day is a blessing and gift.

Despite the year we’ve had, I did my best to see the light and optimism in the cards we’ve were dealt with. It was a tough and challenging year, but I was reminded that every day is a blessing and gift. It’s all about perspective and how you view things. I strongly believe that even with chaos amongst us, we can still see and experience positivity in and from it. I was constantly reminded of how much I have been blessed with. The fact that I get to wake up to start afresh every day is awesome. I have an opportunity to make better choices, be more loving to others, and make a difference. Life is a precious gift.

Last fall, I visited a dear friend in the Midwest. We made dinner together one night (see featured image). It was so special and yummy. My gf made her mom’s Swedish meatballs, which I never had before, and mashed potatoes. Double yum!! I had made Indian chicken curry. We also made rice and green beans. It was a delicious treat we, her family included, enjoyed very much. It was simply lovely.

Y’all know about my passion for cooking and food. Cooking with others brings joy and love in my life. We know that food connects people together. So does cooking. I always feel closer with whom I cook with. It creates a special bond I can’t quite explain. Overall, it’s lovely and cheery.

Wishing all of you a wonderful week. Until tomorrow. Peace!

FS x

My belated Thanksgiving Feast

Hola! So sorry I’ve been absent for a while. Life has been insanely busy the latter half of this year. If you are a follower of my other social media platforms, I tend to update those sites more often. Please follow!!! However, I do plan to resume posting blogs on this site as well.

The holidays are here again. I hope y’all had a wonderful Thanksgiving and having a great start to the holiday season. The days are flying by so quickly! Christmas is in 19 days! Trying to savor this special time of year. It’s my ultimate favorite that I hold dear to my heart.

Sharing my Thanksgiving feast in today’s post. My family and I never shy away from tradition on Thanksgiving. We got to have the turkey, stuffing, yam, ham, mashed potatoes, rice, and gravy! Oh, and we can’t forget the two famous pies- custard and pumpkin!! Yum! That’s our feast, and we never get tired of it!

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The stuffing is homemade and is very simple to prep and make. On my Instagram, I will post some videos of the dishes I made this Turkey Day, including this yummy stuffing.

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My mouth is watering looking at this and reflecting on that delicious meal.

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Homemade desserts made by my cousin- layered jello and mini tarts. I couldn’t resist- they were amazingly good!

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Oh, and I had to have a slice of this! Pumpkin pie from A’ala Bakery is bomb!!!

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…And this custard pie, too- haha! FYI- A’ala Bakery is closing its doors at the end of this month, so get your fix while ya can!

A’ala Bakery
1425 Liliha St.
Honolulu, HI 96817

Have a blessed and safe holiday season!

FS~

Holy moly chicken!

Happy Sunday! Man, did this weekend fly back or what?

Last weekend, we celebrated one of my gf’s bdays at Restaurant 604, near the Arizona Memorial. We loved it there. The view was very serene, as it looks out at the marina. We want to go back during the daytime. I’m sure the view is even more breathtaking in the daytime. We enjoy outdoorsy-type of restaurants. It feels more open and we get to breathe in the fresh air.

The bday lady and I ordered the same dish! Roasted half-pound chicken with garlic mash. Oh my gosh! It was a lot of food! The chicken was huge, and so full of meat! I loved it! The gravy and mash were amazing! Mmm mmm! I ate this for the next couple meals. It was THAT much! I want to try their pasta next! You know me and pasta! My go-to comfort food!

Restaurant 604
57 Arizona Memorial Dr.
Honolulu, 96818
https://www.restaurant604.com/

Enjoy the last day of the weekend!

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~

 

The whole Thanksgiving meal!

I hope y’all had a lovely Thanksgiving with your loved ones.

As I promised, I’m sharing about our Thanksgiving meal!

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Bam! And these were just the entrées! L-R: My homemade stuffing, ham, pineapple ham, dark turkey meat, & white turkey meat.

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Gravy, mash, and yams! Mmmm!

We also had loads of side dishes: poke (raw fish), edamame (soy beans), toss salad, dinner rolls, etc. Too much food! We were so stuffed!

Can’t forget the wines! The Stella Berry and the peach Moscato paired well with our feast.

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And this glory- pumpkin/custard pie! All in one- yummy!

The stuffing was very simple to make. You need the following ingredients:

  • Stove Top stuffing mix OR any stuffing mix of your choice. I used Love’s Bakery’s stuffing mix this year.
  • Celery
  • Carrots
  • Chopped olives
  • Onions
  • Craisins or raisins
  • Pine nuts (optional, which I forgot to add this year)
  • Chicken broth

Sauté the celery, carrots, and onions together with either olive oil or butter. Let that cool. Mix stuffing mix, chopped olives, craisins/raisins, and pine nuts together. Throw in the sautéed veggies and mix together. Drizzle some chicken broth. Cover with foil, bake at 350° for 30-45mins. I like my stuffing loose and crunchy.

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Before it went into the oven. Doesn’t it look delish?

Let the holiday season begin again! Time to get cookin’! Whoo hoo!

Have a wonderful rest of November.