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Our Thanksgiving Eve Dinner!

I hope everyone had a fabulous Thanksgiving and ate delicious food to your stomach’s content! For Natalya and me, it’s a bit too far to fly home to California for Thanksgiving (plus we work on Friday) so for the past few years, we have just stayed in New York.  We decided to host a Thanksgiving … Continue reading

Baked Peppers Stuffed with Ground Beef, Wild Rice & Goat Cheese

It had been a while since I planned a big dinner, and I decided I wanted to make a Mediterranean feast!  I had fallen in love with Stuffed Capsicums (Peppers) while I was in Greece, and it was one of the first recipes I tried after buying The Essential Mediterranean Cookbook.  I decided to ramp … Continue reading

Spaghetti alla Puttanesca

Another recipe from the Essential Mediterranean Cookbook (newest edition here).  The name “puttanesca” is a derivation of the word puttana which means “whore” in Italian — so this dish is literally called the “whore’s spaghetti.”  This is a spicy and salty Southern Italian dish invented in the mid-20th century.  There are many accounts surrounding the … Continue reading

Maria’s Broccoli Rabe

Natalya was making Pollo alla Diavola and the recipe suggested to serve the chicken with Broccoli Rabe or roasted potatoes.  I decided to try to make Broccoli Rabe as an accompanying side dish, mainly because I had no idea what this vegetable was and I figured, “Why not?” I looked up what the vegetable looked … Continue reading

Chicken Chow Mein

Chow Mein 炒面 is a Chinese stir-fried noodle dish that is typically served in two ways: steamed or crispy style.  The latter version is also known as Hong Kong style in Western cultures, and it is one of my favorite Chinese dishes.  In order to get the perfect crispness of these thin noodles, you must … Continue reading

Mushroom Risotto

Growing up in a Chinese household, I ate steamed white rice by the buckets.  When I had first heard of risotto, the idea of essentially soggy, mushy rice did not sound too appealing. It was not until recently that I tried risotto that I realized I had been missing out! I was preparing a meal … Continue reading

Roasted Corn Kernels with Garlic Butter

I found this recipe while searching for a quick way to roast corn kernels without using the oven, as I was simply making this as a garnish to my Chilled Corn Velouté.  Granted, roasting corn is super simple: peel the husks back from corn, baste with seasoning, and then pop them in the oven at … Continue reading

Chinese Mabo Tofu

Mabo Tofu (or Mapo Doufu) is a popular Chinese dish that originated from the Szechuan province.  The dish consists of tofu set in a spicy chili and bean-based sauce that is mixed with minced meat, usually pork or beef.  The original Szechuan recipe is made to be powerfully spicy, although in America, the dish’s heat … Continue reading

Brussels Sprouts with Mushrooms

It is unfortunate Brussels sprouts have such a stigma in popular culture; I grew up thinking “Brussels sprouts” were synonymous with “ew stinky” as that is what everyone would say while wrinkling their noses.  And by “everyone” I really mean characters from television shows.  Due to this misguided train of thought, I had never tasted … Continue reading

Spaghetti and Meatballs

On top of spaghetti, All covered with cheese, I lost my poor meatball, When somebody sneezed… – Tom Glazer (1963) Oh what an epic tale of a lost meatball in the form of a ballad…  there was no point to that, I just had the song in my head. Anywho, classic Italian-American dish: spaghetti and … Continue reading