Where have you been?
Taking a breath. We are doing all the things we have been putting off. The house is getting cleaner with every day. We order out less and cook more. We have even gotten out of the house. Did you know you can go to this place called a restaurant, where you sit down at the table, and chat while people bring you delicious food, and then you don’t even have to do the dishes? Wild.
This weekend we went to New Braunfels, which is a hilariously German town in the middle of Texas. We hit up the farmers market, which had zero produce for some reason but lots of cute dogs. Although I did score a bottle of peach balsamic vinegar. I made pork tenderloin with it. Fun fact, which most of you probably knew, but I discovered only a couple of years ago – USDA decided that we no longer have to cook pork until it turns into a hockey puck.
Pork tenderloin is fast, on the cheaper side, and super easy to make. I bought mine at Sams and marinaded in soy sauce, peach balsamic vinegar, a bit of sugar, crushed garlic, ginger, and some mirin. I just kind of went with 2 part soy sauce, 1 part everything else, 3 cloves of garlic, a tablespoon of Fire and Flavor Asian Rub, and a tablespoon of sugar. Not too precise there.
Pork marinates very quickly, so I cooked it five hours later in a 400 F oven with meat thermometer inserted. I don’t like very rare pork, so I cooked it to 150 F, and then tented it with aluminum foil and let it rest for about 15 minutes.
I served it with stuffing, sweet sauce – basically remade the marinade and cooked it a bit with cornstarch, a salad, and corn on the cob. Then the next day Gordon had it with baked beans. Once in a while my husband demands what he calls Hobo beans, which is not the actual hobo beans recipe, but Bush’s baked beans with whatever leftover meat we have and some sort of bread. This time it was pork tenderloin and biscuits.
Speaking of eating in a restaurant, our outing to New Braunfels was a mixed success. We stopped to have lunch at a highly rated place. Gordon ordered a burger and I ordered blackened fish with broccolini. Now when I see fish with vegetable on the menu, especially blackened fish, I assume this would be a healthier kind of entry.
The fish arrives, and it is swimming in butter. It’s drowned. There is so much butter, it’s rolling around on the plate. And the butter is super salty to the point where it was borderline inedible. I was starving by that point and ended up eating the broccolini but cutting it into pieces and tapping each one on the plate to shake the butter off because it just didn’t taste good. Like what gives with the butter?
Let’s see, what else I wanted to tell you. Oh my tteokbokki fail. Tteokbokki is a spicy dish of Korean rice cakes, which is very delicious and uses gochujang, red pepper paste. Here is a good recipe. Our local Korean place makes it, and I can’t eat it. It’s so spicy. Like your eyes water, and you start making gasping noises spicy. I can do Texas spicy but that’s on another level. So I decided to try making my own.
My apologies to Korean chefs as I detail my butchery of this delicious dish.
I needed gochujang, rice cakes, and fish cake for my tteokbokki, so I enlisted the kids and we made a drive down to San Antonio to an Asian food store. I found ribeye cut up for bulgogi – and it was great – and rice cakes, and boba in every flavor. Did not find eomuk. I went step by step through the frozen section. They had one log-looking batch of fish cake, and it was expensive and kind of looked questionable.
So I am out on the fish cake. But I did find mushrooms of every size and flavor. You see where this is headed, right?
As we stood in the check out line, a couple came out of the side of the store loudly arguing. Asian markets in US tend to be kind of quiet, and everyone keeps to themselves, and this was clearly an aberration. The entire store ignored them.
We went through the check outline and Kid 2 left to grab an extra cart. She came back from the parking lot and informed us that the man punched the woman in the face, they were now physically fighting, and words “9 millimeter” were shouted out. The store security guard was making a beeline for them when Kid 2 came inside. We doubletimed it out of the store to determine if we needed to call 911 and put some distance between us and the gun, if there was one, but the couple had taken off. We went home, and Kid 1 promised to take us to H-mart, which is a big Asian grocer a couple of hours away. Hopefully nobody will be punching anyone in the face there.
So back to tteokbokki. I ended up giving up and made gochujang flavored fish stew. I threw some shrimp, some scallops, and my assorted mushrooms into a wok, stir-fried it a bit, added chicken broth, the rice cakes, about a tablespoon of gochujang, some gochugaru (flaked red pepper), a bit of sugar, and let everything cook for about 15 minutes, until the sauce cooked down. It was delicious, sweet and slightly spicy, just like I wanted, but not really traditional tteokbokki.
The next day I still had leftover mushrooms. I told this to Jeaniene Frost, and she was like, “Pizza!” So I made homemade pizza. That bread machine was such a good purchase. Gordon deserves all the credit.
I took a picture of the pizza and sent it to Jeaniene with words, “I blame you.” She said that she takes the blame because it looked delicious.
::insert smiley face::
I understand the clean up the house bit. After totally ignoring any decluttering since March I am now on a seek and donate mission in the house as well as opening all of my Amazon packages and putting new stuff together so it works.
MariaZ, you are my long-lost twin! 😀
Jeanine is wise. That looks yummy.
Cooking together is fun. I am enjoying cooking with grandchildren.
My son in law lost his job a couple of weeks ago and that young family is now in our guest house, so I have 3 young grandchildren to play with all the time.
The dogs and one very spoiled conure are not super pleased about this development, but the small dog is quickly becoming best buddies with the youngest grandchild, who is 4.
Lynn L says
Are y’all going to Wurstfest in New Braunfels this year for the beer and sausage and folks dancing in lederhosen?
Possibly. 🙂 We are not super fans of wurst, that’s the only thing. But we do love beer.
I’ll have to try to make the Tteokbokki, my mom loves spicy food! I have made Dina’s Apple Cake with great success, I love the recipes you post!
Tteokbokki! If you have Weee! In your area, it’s a lifesaver. We have a lot of Asian stores in my area but sometimes I just don’t want to go out.
All of our Asian groceries are a bit away except for a tiny Thai place. They have a kitchen and make the best curry to order. Love it, but the selection is a bit limited.
Stacy McKnight says
Enjoy the keeping in touch blog posts! H-Mart is amazing! The produce! The fresh herbs! Aisles and aisles of stuff you can’t read the label on but want to try lol!
Katherine J Meservy says
I have used Weee! It is fabulous for an online store. Everything arrives very fresh. I also love love love Hmart.
Korean food is great, and there’s more to it than spicy, which I was aware of not not its full extent. My favorite Korean Youtube channel lately is Future Neighbor. The main cook is funny (he breaks out some dad jokes every now and then) and makes the cooking really seem modern.
I like Aaron and Claire on youtube. Husband cooks and wife is the Taste Tester. Aaron makes South Korean (with some Japanese thrown in) food more accessible to beginners (as in beginner Asian-food cooks). It is tasty food with scaled down ingredients that are more readily available. Good place to start.
Katherine J Meservy says
Thank you for the YouTube channel suggestion.
The pizza does look delicious! I hope it tasted as good as it looked ????
Cathy R says
My daughter introduced us to Korean Japchae which is now on our repeat frequently list. I can’t believe my husband will eat so many vegetables and love it!
Susan B says
I made japchae from a recipe in Cooks Illustrated and we really liked it too. It’s definitely a keeper
Dang, you can’t even buy groceries without some excitement happening; It sounds like you have very eclectic tastebuds. I made a double batch of butternut squash soup in my crockpot yesterday, yum, and today I’m making chili and will be freezing most of it too.
Moderator R says
I keep talking myself in and out of buying a crockpot, it’s so hard to resist especially in autumn with the slew of cosy recipes I want to make. But more things taking out counter space…????
Get an Insta-pot if you can. It slow cooks but also a lot of other things. I like equipment that can multi-task. It justifies cost and space.
Donna A says
I heard you can dehydrate fruit & veg in some of them with the air fryer function. This tempts me but I’m in London in a flat and counter space is at a premium. Will I really use it? The slow cooker rarely gets dragged out as the capacity is too big and it’s soooo slow (I know that’s the point but I’m paranoid about leaving it overnight and unattended). The rice cooker gets used more but even then only when I’m making a bigger batch. Will a multi cooker really be worth the money and space? And I still have my deceased uncles soup maker and mega big fancy food processor that I have never even unboxed in 3.5 years (I should sell them but…..)
How frequently do people only cooking for two – and NOT batch cooking – actually use multicookers? I’d love some real life knowledge.
Moderator R says
Unitaskers and London flats just don’t mix.
In a perfect world where my kitchen would be in an inn and I had as much counter space as my little black heart could desire, my first purchase would be a Zojirushi rice cooker. I hate cooking rice, especially anything more complicated than a risotto. Sushi rice NEVER comes out right. Instead I just tell myself I should cut down on the rice anyway ????
Donna A says
Blasphemy! You cannot eat too much rice, pasta, potatoes or chocolate. This is sacred!
I cook for a small army, but my instapot does rice, slow cooker, yogurt, jam, roasts, soup, stew, hard boiled eggs, Mac and cheese, and the easiest mashed potatoes. I like to do colcanon in it when its colder.
I just have a regular not one with an air fryer lid.
I love mine and will be packing it and driving three states away for Christmas so I can use it for our dinners. ( I’m the family cook.)
I too love my Insta! Definitely worth the space! They come in smaller sizes than the standard 6 qt (or larger sizes too), if you feel like that would be more useful.
You can use it as a rice cooker, pressure cooker (BEST roasts), slow cooker, bain marie (spelling?), or even just like a pot on a stove burner (yogurt too, but I haven’t tried that)! I moved my slow cookers to the closet under stairs in the basement and they haven’t gotten out since. ????
Zojirushi 10 cup rice cooker. It’s a workhorse in our house- we have had it for over 20 years and make rice at least once a week.
The tabletop hot water heater, on the other hand, we go through one maybe every 4-5 years. But we use it every day, 12-15 hours on, so I guess I really shouldn’t complain. Water at just below boiling, always ready for tea!
Margaret K says
Are you finding the right kind of rice for sushi rice? Apparently it’s called Japonica rice in the UK. It’s a specific type of short-grain rice. There are other short-grain rices that don’t cook up right for sushi.
Fair points. I have a 6 quart cooker and am feeding 4 adults. Most recipes make enough for two meals (or 8 portions). It is comparable in size to a slow cooker but the lid is big, bulky and heavy. It has to be (high pressure, etc.) Its quick cooking but you have to bring it up to pressure ( which could take time depending on how full the cooker is), cook it under pressure (which is fast), then release the press (which could take more time). When people claim something takes 3 minutes to cook, they’re not saying how long it takes for pressure to build and release,
which could be 20 more minutes. The trade off is that its really even cooking. Dried beans come out all tender. Meats have been moist. I’ve liked how food turns out when I use it. However, I think I under utilize it. It comes out for all major holidays and large gatherings. But quick dinners are still stove top or the oven. If I lived in a dorm room or some place with limited cooking space, I would totally use it more often. (I don’t have the air fryer feature so maybe that makes a difference, too.)
I have an Instant Pot and cook for two. I use it at least once every week (if it’s a cook at home week). I’ve only used it to pressure cook and steam things, haven’t used the slow cooker setting as I have a slow cooker that I love and know how to use. ???? The Instant Pot is wonderful!! Lots of times the one batch will be enough to become leftovers. Plus you can cook an up to 6 pound turkey breast in it so you have turkey sandwiches! Yay!!
FWIW, I store my crockpot in a not often used cupboard until I am ready to use it. I do not have a/c and we hit 117 F this past summer, but I still used the crockpot overnight to make vegetarian enchiladas and plum butter/jam.
I have 2 crockpot sizes and recently use only the smaller one. I am thinking of listing the larger one because our family has shrunk and I no longer cook that much. Slow cookers were also good to bring to work (or large family) pot lucks …
I am now single, and still use my 6 qt CrockPot one Sunday night a month to cook up a Meatless Monday pot of some variety of beans and rice with veggies (typically carrots and greens; sometimes tomatoes or whatever added or swapped in).
I eat that for lunch and supper Monday, and freeze the rest in pint/half-litre containers for the rest of the Mondays. Sunday morning I stick one in the fridge and it’s defrosted by lunchtime Monday. This routine has made my Mondays so much better, it’s ridiculous.
Here’s my current favorite:
Meatless Monday Meal
Layer into the slow cooker in order:
2/3 cup uncooked brown rice
1 cup dried beans, soaked, rinsed, and drained (black lentils or white beans are favorite)
4 large carrots, diced large
1-15oz. can diced tomatoes, including liquid
1 lb. chopped frozen* greens, preferably substantial ones like collards or kale *Slow cooker directions say not to use anything frozen. I always do the first hour or two on high, to get the temperature up enough to kill things. I know for a fact that I’m not the only one who cheats on this, but be aware that this is considered risky from a food safety perspective. You could substitute 1.5-2 pounds of fresh washed greens if it worries you.*
Generously sprinkle over the assembled layers:
salt-free seasoning blend of your choice (my current favorite is Massanutten Blend from Shenandoah Spice Company, which is pure comfort, and equally awesome with ground meat; if your seasoning blend contains salt, reduce the volume of tamari)
Pour over this the following mixture:
1/3 cup low-sodium tamari (1/4 cup or less if your seasoning blend contains salt, or if you use regular tamari)
1/3 cup mirin (or substitute a smaller volume of sweetener like fruit juice, syrup, or honey, in which case you may need to add a little more water)
1/4 cup rice vinegar
1 1/2 cups water, more or less
Cook on High for 2 hours; reduce heat to Low and cook 6-8 hours longer.
For me, this actually makes 4 pints of leftovers after the first Monday, so it’s really five weeks of Monday meals. YMMV.
Barbara Erwin says
Our instapot is amazing. It fries, slow cooks, sears, and pressure cooks! Way better than a simple crockpot.
Patricia Schlorke says
I have an Al-Clad slow cooker, but I don’t have it on my countertop. I have it stored on a heavy duty shelf when I’m not using it. I make brisket in it. It’s too small to cook the entire brisket in it, so I cut up the untrimmed brisket and cook either the flat or the fatty part in it.
How I cook brisket in a slow cooker: I roll out a sheet of aluminum foil (heavy duty), put the salt and pepper on the foil, put the meat side down on the foil, and season the fat side that is up away from the foil. Then I wrap up the brisket in the foil, put it in the slow cooker, and cook on low for about 13-15 hours. The time depends on the thickness of the brisket. It can go for less or more time. Once the brisket is done, I let it rest for about 10 minutes. It is so tender and moist you really don’t need a sharp knife to cut into the meat.
I have used paprika and other spices like cumin on the brisket. Yummy!
You can also make chicken stock in a slow cooker. 🙂
I can understand that one, I mention buying a cooking anything and my fiancee’ asks me what I am getting rid of? Counter space is limited and my closet pantry is already packed. (Even after I gave all my Rachael Ray cooking stuff to my daughter!)
I can’t find my waffle-maker, I think it has been re-homed to one of the kids.
My best buy, several years ago, was a Ninja multi-cooker. It is a slow cooker and also can be used like a stove top cooker. So I can brown and braise in it too. It works great for one pot dishes.
My youngest (26 years old) still uses our home as a Stop n Shop @ Mom and Dads… :))
Totally worth it!
Upper plains states are edging towards winter so it’s time to stock up. I’ve spent the last 2 days making apple pies for the freezer. The last one went into the oven for supper.
Enjoy your down time!
It sounds like you are enjoying life. Time can be consumed so fast, that leisurely shopping, cooking don’t make the list when time flies. Enjoy!
Bread machines are great for making pizza dough, especially sourdough. We usually have at least one dough ball in the freezer.
Wow. And I thought I was adventurous for thinking of making something from Great British Bake-off. Your lucky family!
I love your baking and cooking posts!! They remind me of the fun we had as kids when we helped our mother with dinner or a baking project.
Aaron and Claire is a YouTube channel run by a Korean couple in Seoul. Very funny and generally easy dishes and not always super spicy. Might be a fun way to try out Korean dishes.
Your countertop looks like mine. I am a quartz!
Saaaame. I will never go back. That island was originally wood butcher top and keeping it clean was insane. I would scrub it and oil it and 10 minutes later it would get a stain. It would be one thing if it was meant to be like an old reclaimed prep wood top, but it was the smooth, meant to be decorative butcher top. And since that’s my main prep area, I wanted something that resist acid. Engineered stone is the stuff.
Patricia Schlorke says
I agree. Some people have marble for their counter tops. Unless the person is into candy making, marble is not feasible. I also see on cooking shows where the counter is butcher top wood, but they use wooden cutting boards to cut up things. Quartz or other types of engineered stone is so much better.
Kayeri (aka Darth Mom) says
There’s a place called the Olive Cart in South Haven. Michigan. They have sll kinds of balsamics and they ship! Last time we were there they showed us a trick if putting a little (insert fruit here) light balsamic in water to flavor it without sugars and it was yummy! they also have a smoky balsamic that substitutes well for bbq sauce. We spend generously during our visits and order at least once a year in between visits. I highly recommend them!
I’m surprised Jeanine didn’t order pizza delivery from you.
One of my favorite easy-peasy meals is a grilled pork tenderloin:
1 (10 oz) jar peach preserves
1/4 c white wine vinegar
3 T finely chopped jalapeno (or more)
1 1/2 T finely chopped ginger (or more)
1.5 lb pork tenderloin
1/2 tsp salt
In a small saucepan, combine preserves, vinegar, jalapeno and ginger. Mix well. Use 1/2 c for basting, gently heat remainder on stovetop.
Sprinkle pork with salt. Grill over med heat until no longer pink in the center, turning frequently and brushing with glaze during the last 10 minutes of cooking time.
Serve pork with heated glaze. Excellent over rice.
Yeah I’ve never found restaurants in New Braunfels all that wondrous either. The only ones I so far would go back to are in Gruene.
And yes, so tired of takeout and my own cooking and am now going out again. Happiness!
Interesting usda news, especially as I’ve never cooked my pork loins more than 150o, as I don’t like juiceless dry pork. I figure if I can get a yummy pork chop at a restaurant, they’ve not been doing 160 either heh.
The pizza looks wonderful!
I like H Mart. There’s also MT market (locally owned, pan Asian) and Ranch 99 out of CA, which I’ve not tried, but an Indonesian friend likes. To give you more choices hehe. Unfortunately all of them are north or northwest Austin.
Have fun on your shopping adventure!
It’s been a bit since I’ve been to a Ranch 99, but I’m a fan.
That pizza looks wonderful!! I wish you had taken a photo of the fish in “Land o’ Lakes”….which I don’t know if they are in Texas, but it’s a huge dairy company in the Northeast.
sooo, fish. Land o’ Lakes.
yeah, sometimes I’m less punny than than I think.
Land o Lakes once poisoned hundreds of alpacas. Many small breeders were put out of business. I put them in the same category as Exon.
Mmm, now I am hungry. One thing I have been doing a lot this year is using a brine on my pork chops. Love it! They don’t come out too dry anymore ????
H Mart, is a cool place. Sometimes when my brother and Sister-in-law came from NV, they bring a cooler and stop and shop on the way out of town.
Love every that has been written even if I have to track a snippet down with hunting hounds. Like Orro says, I would read. Speaking of Orro, someone should tell him to make a homemade Grand burger one must use low grade hamburger that has been frozen for at least two weeks but hopefully less than six months. Assemble patty (ketchup is a must on top bun) then nuke whole thing in the microwave for 15 seconds. No I don’t know why this works but I served my family this instead of going to the Grand Burger place. No I don’t know why it works it just does.
P.S. Please don’t let the boohoo booboo yahoos get you down.
Yum! I approve of food-centric posts. They make me hungry though. 🙂
Yummy! Glad y’all are getting back to regular programming. ????
“Cook pork, roasts, and chops to 145 ºF” – laughs in German and eats a Mettbrötchen 😀
Moderator R says
Ooooh, you just reawakened childhood memories of eating Teewurst or Zwiebelmett bought from the German Christmas Fair, now where can I hunt it in London is the question ????
I usually cook pork scotch fillet steaks using the 6/2/2 method, 6 minutes on one side, flip over, cook 2 minutes, remove from pan and stand for 2 minutes, makes tender and moist pork. If the steak is thicker than 2cm ( 3/4”) cooking time will need to be adjusted .
Donna A says
If you have any Polish deli’s nearby they might have some, especially if they have a butcher section. There’s also an English chain of Lithuanian (Eastern European) supermarkets called Lituanica, I went to the Walthamstow branch once and got the best kabanos and speck.
Donna A says
Oops – I was trying to reply to ModR about finding the raw meat delights in fair London town
Moderator R says
It reached me , thank you for the suggestion! ☺️
Moderator R says
D’oh, ofc the sklep are likely to have it! I have to go anyway, Halloween is gone so it’s Lebkuchen time ????
Donna A says
My family likes hard cider pork loin. Put a cup of boiling water mixed with a teaspoon of chicken better than broth into a crock pot on high and add celery in 1 inch pieces, baby carrots, onion powder and tomatillos cut in quarters. Add a pork loin on top and season to taste. Pour a bottle of crisp apple hard cider on top and cover. Cook 5 hours or until it falls apart. You can brown the meat separately first and brown the veggies too. You can use as many veggies as you like and can add potatoes . I usually add enough boiling water to fill the crock pot and add more better than chicken paste to make a rich broth. I freeze a lot of the leftovers in broth to make dinners and they last for months in the freezer because everything is submerged. Happy cooking!
Moderator R says
Yumm! Just to confirm here for the international contingent, “hard cider” is the sparkling alcoholic beverage made of apples, right?
Not always sparkling, but definitely the alcoholic part.
Yes, hard cider is sold in the liquor case at my local super market,
the alcohol cooks off and the flavor stays. I have used several different brands and like the ones that just taste like apples. I use a 12 oz. bottle of crisp apple flavor. It gets poured on at the beginning onto the browned or raw meat. I have also used a big package of boneless pork chops to make the recipe and those I don’t brown first.
You know something is wrong if the butter doesn’t even taste good!
You could try adding cheese to the tteokboki. It’s a common fusion add on that helps tone down the spicy and is still super yummy. My korean mother thinks it’s sacrilege but my college buddies were like you and could not handle the spiciness. I still make a lot of traditional recipes and my husband has dubbed one of my favorite stews the “bunker buster” as it is so spicy even when it cooks, he spends his time either in the basement of garage. Lol
if it makes you feel any better, I add a bit of mayo, some garlic hoisin sauce, a spoonful of doenjang and both cheddar cheese powder and parmesan cheese to my tteokbokki…
I’m happy you’ve been able to get caught up on life. I’m sorry the restaurant dish was so disappointing.
Could you please post the link to Dina’s apple cake? I meant to go print it out, but then work happened…. Thanks.
Now that the weather in the upper Midwest is getting cooler, I’m baking again.
Moderator R says
The recipe will be included at the end of Sweep of the Heart, which comes out on December 13 ???? https://ilona-andrews.com/featured-release/
Thanks, Mod R! I’ve already placed my pre-order the 1st day of the link. ????
Your cutting boards are beautiful! Do you have a preferred brand or type?
“Asian markets in US tend to be kind of quiet, and everyone keeps to themselves, and this was clearly an aberration.”
So, this completely fits with my recent experience, but is entirely at odds with my experience growing up! When I was a kid I did most of my asian market shopping at a number of small shops in Seattle’s Chinatown*. At busier times – especially when, say, the fresh fish had just arrived, or the limited run of the really good soft noodles, or whatever, they tended to be crowded and loud.
One time, as an undergraduate, I was one of some tens of people trying to buy fish early on some weekend day. I spent a while being polite, as around me people shouted, mostly in Cantonese. (Which I sort of understand, but don’t speak.) Eventually, after it was clear that I was never going to get anywhere with this approach, I decided to join in, and shouted out my order in Mandarin.
All of the sudden, you could have heard a pin drop, as the entire store shut up and turned to look at me. (TBF, I wa a 5’11” white girl, shouting in very Beijing accented Mandarin.) …so I repeated my order at a more normal volume, and got my fish!
* AKA “the international district”. Look, there are complicated politics behind each name.
Omar Mtz says
yes to all the meals except the drowned fish in butter, everything else sounded great.
there is a Rose tteokbokki version that has either heavtmy cream or milk that makes it less spicy.
Yum!! I actually bought that exact bread machine based on your recommendation. 5 ⭐️ Now I’m going to have to make pizza dough!
Fish cake is easy to find here and cheap. But I know my uncle usually makes his. It’s relatively easy to make.
I love H-Mart! I’m so spoiled that there are tons of different grocery stores around, and I can try new things. Last week my mom and I checked out an Indian store that was near a traditional Mandira.
I’ve seen tteokbokki at Costco lately. I’m not sure how good it is: I’m a wimp when it comes to hot (spicy) foods.
I definitely love your food posts! Yummm and so inspiring. Also- yay for the bread machine!!!
M.S. Linsenmayer says
To amuse y’all:
Hodag is now the best mascot in America.
Patricia Schlorke says
Fish swimming in butter sauce…oh my heavens. When I see fish of some sort on a menu, I ask how it is made before ordering. If the server says what you received, Ilona, I just say “oh” and order something else. That tells me that the fish could be either fresh, and someone loves butter, or the fish could be getting bad and the butter masks the bad fish smell. 🙁
The pizza looks good! It’s finally getting cool enough for me to consider using my big oven to make homemade pizza.
So nice to hear from you, and that you are [mostly] enjoying yourselves! But that Asian store experience sounds scary
Kid 1 definitely has the right idea. Tons of eomuk at Hmart up in Lakeline. I would also recommend making Eomuk Guksu, which is this yummy, healthy, clear broth noodle soup. 🙂 https://www.maangchi.com/recipe/eomuk-guksu
And if you feel like trying to make tteokbokki again, my fave version is the Rose Tteokbokki. Richer but oh so good with the added cream and cheese (and bacon, if you’re me). https://christieathome.com/blog/rose-tteokbokki/
Try a sous vide’d pork tenderloin. After it is cooked, sear it in bacon fat. Excellent!
Ooh! That sounds tasty. We got a sous vide heater for Christmas. So far steak is all my husband has made with it. I bake, cook and run the crock pot. I figure the sous vide wand can be his responsibility. I am also the one who fires up the charcoal grill in all kinds of Illinois weather
Tasha A says
I’m not Asian but H-mart is heaven on earth. The snack section is incredible and we get dumplings of every kind there. We have a couple of Asian friends who took us through there a couple times to explain everything and now we go there all the time! Thankfully ours is only 20 min away.
I like to dip cucumbers in gochujang and with the bulgogi, you can make sangchusam (Korean lettuce wrap)-you take cooked bulgogi put it on a piece of piece of bib lettuce with some rice and gochujang and stick it all on your mouth. Yum! I don’t know about Texas, but California H-marts make and sell tteokbokki. Have you tried japchae-glass noodles with veggies?
1)you never have to apologize for taking time for yourself. As a member of the BDH I don’t expect you te entertain us every week. I am happy with your books and the occasional glimpse into your life.
2)I commend you on trying all of these dishes. I don’t have the time, patience or inclination to try.
Joyce Hunt says
We added a Eufy G30, Robot Vacuum with Dynamic Navigation 2.0 to our house this year and I wish I had bought one sooner. It cleans and cleans and cleans. No more little puffs of pet fur to jump out at unsuspecting company! My only regret is not buying one that mops too. But for a first time purchase I erred on the side of less financial investment. My husband is “Mr. Cynical” but he told me that I can now purchase any type of gadget I want after 3 out of 3 successes: instant pot, air fryer, and now robovac or R2D2 as my hubby calls it.
If you’d like to try a different kind of tteokbokki, Gungjung Tteokbokki is a non-spicy version that apparently is the “original” recipe served at the royal court once upon a time and a great alternative to the “blow your face off spicy” kind ????
I wish I could have gotten in on that pizza. Looks scrumptious!
Bill From NJ says
glad you guys are living a little, that is awesome! We haven’t quite gotten back into the restaurant habit,but baby steps!
With pork, the reason they don’t require it to be 180 is the US pork producers finally figured out, as they did in Europe for centuries, to cook their food which eliminated trichinosis. We haven’t eaten pork in a while, between the way they raise pigs and my wife growing up eating a lot of it, we didn’t eat pork or pork products. I do miss pork sausages once in a while…
Jeaniene has the right idea. Mushrooms are great on pizza!! ????
Oo, that reminds me that I need to see if there’s a pizza dough recipe that came with the breadmaker.
Hmart is an awesome store
West of Austin says
West of Austin there is next to no produce at any of the farmers markets. We are just too dry
Mary Beth says
When I can’t sleep, or just need to rest my brain, I watch Asian cooking shows, and street food videos. ‘Chinese cooking demystified’ is one of my favorites. I learned so much.
I did get to visit Korea years ago, and fell in love with kimchee. These days I can’t eat anything spicy or with lots of sugar, so I’ve never had rice cakes or fish cakes.
It sounds like you made a wonderful compromise.
Ancho chili powder is not super hot, and it can be made into a chili sauce similar to Korean chili paste. It’s my go to when we want chili that won’t rip our throats out.
Moderator R says
Kimchi is life! I tried the cucumber kimchi for a less spicy, more refreshing alternative and it was a hit with people who don’t tolerate spicy well ☺️
You have no idea how happy it makes me to know you and Jeaniene Frost are friends and share food porn… ????
If Gordon likes beans with meat inside, he will probably like feijoada (in case you don’t know, it’s a very popular Brazilian food made with black beans, sausages and some pork parts. it’s delicious and I suggest you eat it like us Brazilians eat, accompanied by white rice and farofa). p.s. I hope the English is understandable, I’m still learning and in this case I used Google translator.
Bertello Grande 16″ Outdoor Pizza Oven – Gas & Wood
Awesome! Can be found on the bertello.com website, and amazon, and goes on sale every now and then. Vito Lacopelli on youtube has great reviews for this.
Anyhoo, your homemade pizza looks awesome!
Have you worked out your Thanksgiving menu? I know you usually do a ton.
For the first time in any of my children’s lives we actually live near relatives. Thanksgiving for us has always been myself, my husband, and our kids, plus any friends that aren’t visiting family that year. Thus I can justify making 5 or so deserts.
But we will be doing Thanksgiving with my in-laws this year, but we will still be expected to do the majority of the cooking. My Mother-in-law likes to hover, and add things/change temps/ and overall be a nuisance so I don’t want to take my traditional recipes down for her to do her best to “improve” them.
So looking for any inspiration. Especially any no-fail recipes.
Moderator R says
I have added my voice to yours hehe, even if we don’t celebrate Thanksgiving here, I love Ilona’s Thanksgiving posts!
If it helps, I got the same blackened fish floating in the butter lake you did years ago and I was mad about it too.
But thank you for sharing your own recipes!
Every time one of the girls cooks something yummy I squirrel it right out of the book and save it, lol.
Not much for cooking inspo in The Edge iirc, but I’m going to be re-reading it soon. It’s been on my mind.
Chelsea C says
So I came over to the blog cause I may or may not have been stalking to see when the next Ryder book comes out because I’m getting old and forgot if there was a date set or not. However, I always love to pick some blog posts to read because they are fun 🙂
Interestingly enough I forgot you and Jeaniene were friends and oddly enough I was like I really want some Cat and Bones and I realized I hadn’t listened to one of the books (it was the first one from Bones pov) and like dummy me I didn’t even REALIZE that! (thought it was other side characters LOL) so I was stalking her the other day too (to of course see if she hopefully has plans to you know continue all the books from Bones) 😀
Anyways sorry don’t want to make it all about the lovely Jeaniene! She’s right mushrooms are fabulous on pizza! I actually have this mushroom kit thing for hmm pink oyster mushrooms? I’ve never done a kit before and I haven’t yet because I’m like what will I do with the mushrooms?! Pan fry in butter and just eat them or like “something” ? 😛
Totally interesting facts about pork/temps as I myself didn’t realize that either?! LOL! But I agree about not wanting a hockey puck for dinner so that’s fabulous news 😛
And it wouldn’t be much fun if I didn’t skim/read the comments section either 🙂 I have to admit some of the asian recipes/names I have not a clue about haha but to your Moderator R GET A CROCKPOT ITS AMAZING! 🙂 I’m highly addicted to my crockpots (I have two LOL) and I have two instapots (the original which is smaller and the like really big one) 😀 and a bread mixer thingy that I haven’t used (because I’ve never made homemade bread or cookies) I mean I’ve made those things by hand but they kill my carpal tunnel so I really should learn LOL 🙂 and YES crockpots are awesome for making cozy soups etc for fall/winter! DO IT! I have two so sometimes I can make 2 different things at once and they come in right handy during holiday meal prep when I only have so much space/oven/stove to work with!
Do you have a favorite bread/and or pizza crust dough recipe that might work in a mixer you’d like to share? 🙂
So basically hiyas and I have rambling posts LOL 🙂 Going to go catch up on some of the other blog posts as well 😀 Happy Fall!
Ooooh, you should try their Gungjung Tteokbokki(same website)! I can’t handle the heat, so I go for the soy sauce version. It is super delicious!
That pizza looks mouthwatering good…
If normal tteokbokki are too spicy for you, maybe this rose (or cream) recipe could work for you (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0nTKAsW2F20). I’ve fared well with this and in Korea there are so many different sauces for tteokbokki, it’s amazing.
Lynn Thompson says
Dang, Ilona Andrews, now I want pizza. I have to make my own because I have an onion food allergy. Also, Titan will not eat pepperoni made with Turkey nor Turkey bacon or Turkey sausage. However, he will gleefully eat roasted Turkey sitting on stove top waiting to be served to family for thanksgiving dinner. Sigh. LOL
Thank you, Ilona Andrews for the post.
SnowCat Macdobhran says
I make pizza every Wednesday using the King Arthur pizza flour and the recipe on the back of the bag. I order the flour by the case. I’ve been doing it for so long that I know it by heart. (That’s saying something.)