I began Week 12 by saying that, for a long time, Lee’s Sandwiches was the only exposure I had to Vietnamese cuisine.
Thankfully, I’ve expanded my palate since I first had Lee’s, but no matter how many bowls of pho I slurp down, or spring rolls I munch through, I’ll never forget my first true Vietnamese love.
Aside from the interesting history of the banh mi, it’s simply a fantastic sandwich.
The version in most restaurants comes with a smear of mayonnaise, but Chef Brian keeps it healthy with a light chili and lime sauce to counter pork stir-fried in tangy tamarind paste.
Here’s Week 12, Meal 3: Pork banh mi. Continue reading Week 12, Meal 3: Pork banh mi
Before I started this blog, there was pretty much one style of rice on the plate when I cooked at home.
It was white, flavored with a little salt, and that’s pretty much all folks.
Since, Chef Brian has introduced me to wild rice, brown rice and now, spiced rice.
For our next dish, Chef is breaking out the turmeric along with a whole lotta mint, cilantro, lemongrass and fish sauce.
Week 12, Meal 2: Grilled lemongrass chicken over yellow chile rice with snap peas and pickled carrot slaw is one hell of a ride on the flavor train. Continue reading Week 12, Meal 2: Grilled lemongrass chicken over yellow chile rice with snap peas and pickled carrot slaw
BWHAHAHAHAHAHA! I made stock (for the first time) and then an awesome soup with it!
For the first meal of Week 12, we’re whipping up one tasty bowl of noodles that is as comforting as it is hearty. If you’re a fan of Vietnamese flavors — citrus, spice, heat and fish sauce — this is one dish you won’t be able to slurp down quick enough.
Grab a bowl and some chopsticks, and warm up to Week 12, Meal 1: Pho with oxtail, flank steak and filet mignon. Continue reading Week 12, Meal 1: Pho with oxtail, flank steak and filet mignon
Our next recipe during fusion tacos week is arguably the most popular one since the food truck explosion began, and I’d argue that our Week 10, Meal 2: Korean steak tacos can stand up to the best in class. Honestly, this taco out and out beats some of the food truck fare I’ve had.
Make this when you’re craving Kogi, but don’t want to deal with long lines, heavy-handed slaw use and bad attitudes. Continue reading Week 10, Meal 2: Korean steak tacos with tomatillo salsa and kimchi sour cream
It was nice to come home yesterday to a kitchen filled with the smell of pork that has been slow cooking in tomatillos all day.
The flavor of Week 9, Meal 3: Cuban braised pork shoulder with peppers and onions over black beans and rice was even better than the smell though.
I’ll say, for an unorganized, lazy dude like myself, these recipes have been a pain in the ass to put together — I was up at 5:30 a.m. yesterday browning pork! — but once it’s on the fork, it makes all of the hard work worth it. Continue reading Week 9, Meal 3: Cuban braised pork with peppers and onions over black beans and rice
I don’t know where in the world you’re reading this from, but I’m writing from sunny Orange County, California where it wasn’t summer until fall and it wasn’t fall until December.
So far this month we’ve had stunning heat and heavy rain, but yesterday we had a beautiful day that started out with light rain dripping from a dull blue sky. I saw some sun in the afternoon, and at night, it was nice and cool near the mouth of the canyon where I live.
It was a day for soup, and lucky for me Chef Brian was serving up a comforting bowl of steamy broth packed with meat and veggies and topped with cheese.
Snuggle up to Week 6, Meal 3: Tortilla soup. Continue reading Week 6, Meal 3: Tortilla soup
It’s funny how authentic Mexican food contains very little soupy sauce or loads of cheese.
Take Week 6, Meal 2: Red chicken enchiladas with queso fresco and pickled red onion for example. These are hearty enchiladas, complete with tons of smoky red sauce and a smattering of cheese crumbles — a far cry from the calorie-laden enchies at El Torito, Cafe Rio, etc.
Try these when you’ve got the craving for great Mex, without all the fat. Continue reading Week 6, Meal 2: Red chicken enchiladas with queso fresco and pickled red onion
Living in Southern California, you’re always surrounded by amazing Mexican food — real Mexican food, not that Taco Bell shit. Because of that, it’s nearly useless to try and make Mexi dishes at home when there’s probably a taco truck down the street doing it 10 times better.
But I didn’t feel that way with Week 6, Meal 1: Shrimp tacos with shaved green cabbage, pasilla pepper salsa, lime sour cream and queso fresco.
The pepper-packed spice mix, vibrant pasilla salsa and tangy lime sour cream elevate this taco from simple made-at-home fare to something far beyond what I thought I could do to Mexican food at home. Continue reading Week 6, Meal 1: Shrimp tacos with shaved green cabbage, pasilla pepper salsa, lime sour cream and queso fresco
Though I’m partial to BBQ of the American variety, I’m not going to gripe about grilled short ribs marinated in soy sauce and sriracha one bit.
Though Week 5, Meal 3: Grilled kalbi short ribs over Thai mango and peanut slaw was an enduring run through my still-being-polished knife skills, the end result was worth all the slicing, chopping and julienne-ing (not a real word) that I put into it. Continue reading Week 5, Meal 3: Grilled kalbi short ribs over Thai mango and peanut slaw
Week 5, Meal 1: Honey-lime chicken lettuce wraps with rice, mango, cucumber and creamy ginger soy dressing is by far the healthiest thing I’ve eaten in months. Probably the closest thing to a salad you”ll ever see me eat on this blog.
It wasn’t all bad though. I like cucumber. And mango too. Plus, you can’t go wrong with chicken, ginger or lime.
Alright, I’ll stop fronting. For a bunch of dressed up fruits and veggies, this one was pretty darn tasty.
You know, if fruits and veggies are your thing, or whatever. Continue reading Week 5, Meal 1: Honey-lime chicken lettuce wraps with brown rice, mango, cucumber and creamy soy dressing