Thursday, October 30, 2014

Goodbye To Yet Another Lethal Weapon I Inherited

American Made Carving Fork

It's been a while since I got rid of those scary long knives.  But I'm still continuing to disarm my home.  This time I'm going to throw away the half a dozen carving forks that my husband inherited from his dead relatives.  I had never seen this kind of fork ever in my life until I married my husband.  I didn't know how to even call this kind of fork in English until a couple minutes ago when I googled "big fork".

I often hear Americans inherited money and houses from their dead grandparents, dead uncles and aunts or whoever cousins a dozen times removed.  Yet, all I actually saw my husband inherited were knives, carving forks and other junks!! I wonder in what national percentile my husband is, in terms of inheritance received by the average Americans.  May be he is in the bottom 1%.

This carving fork is probably older than me because it was made in the USA.  Just when was the last time things like that were made in the USA?

Carving Fork Made In the USA

I sincerely hope that my husband isn't going to inherit lethal weapons from his relatives anymore.  May be it's just me being paranoid, getting rid of them stresses me out.  Now to get rid of these carving forks, I will first have to wear a pair of gloves, then I will wash them with detergent so as to remove all my finger prints.  I will then dry them off.  After changing to another pair of new surgical gloves, I will wrap each of them individually in layers of newspapers and I will dump them in the recycle can. Now have I missed any details in removing my trace?  I really don't want anyone to pick up any of these carving forks that will have my finger prints all over.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Japanese Pumpkin Pudding

Japanese pumpkin pudding

In celebration of Halloween, one of my beloved Japanese supermarkets are now selling pumpkin puddings. The puddings in the deli fridge section caught my eyes because they all had lids that were decorated with Halloween stickers (I tossed the lid away too prematurely before I had the chance to take a picture of it.). I'm a big pumpkin fan so I would not miss the opportunity to try out the pumpkin puddings that were made with Japanese pumpkins.  Japanese pumpkins don't taste exactly like the American pumpkins and their flesh is of a much lighter orange color. If you ever had vegetable tempera in any Japanese restaurant, you probably had tasted them too. They are often used in making vegetable tempera.  Their taste is more subtle.  I often had the American  pumpkin pies but this was my first time having  pumpkin pudding even though I'm a big fan of "all natural" pudding (not the Jello kind sitting on the grocery store shelf).  This all natural pumpkin pudding topped with raisins and pumpkin seeds was made with real heavy dream and real ingredients. It tasted so good.  I think I could have found a recipe online and  made this kind of pudding at home instead of paying $2.48 for a small container of it.  But if I make at home, I will have to make a batch of them and I will be eating too much like I ate almost all the chocolate-chip cookies I made last time.  So for me, it's better to pay $2.48 and enjoy a portion controlled cup of decadent pumpkin pudding without spending more money on making a batch at home and then putting on more weight.  For me, this pudding is worth every single penny. I love it.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Will You Go To This Lady's Dinner Party Even On Halloween? Seriously??

My first feeling after I watched this video was that this had to be another "scripted" and "staged" reality show.  I just couldn't believe that someone who is seemingly bilingual and who is eloquent can be living in this kind of condition in the wealthiest country in the world.  But then after reading more on the story reported on various newspapers, I found out that this was the actual reality.  Oh my god!!!!  I wish I could watch the whole episode.  I read that the investors who bought this home at a foreclosure had sold the home back to this lady and had allegedly helped her clear out this mess. At least she lives in a stand alone house and she has no neighbor living real close to her.  I can't imagine having someone like that living next door to me in my apartment building.   This kind of hoarding is not just every landlord's nightmare, but every apartment or condo renter's nightmare.  I will die of heart attack if I have to share a common wall with someone like this lady. Just the thought of having rats and roaches crawling in  from a next door neighbor like this is more scary than the thought of having Freddie coming to my doors from Elm Street.

I'm now even more determined than ever to get rid of the junks in  my kitchen!! 

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Speedy Egg White Scramble Breakfast Burrito

Egg White Scramble Burrito in 10 mins

Several days ago, I made Crème Brûlée Tartlets from a recipe that requires egg yolks.  Not wanting to waste the egg whites, I used them to make egg white scramble burritos for breakfast.  I was never a big fan of egg white scrambles because I found any scramble without egg yolk to be too bland.  But after adding diced spams and chopped green onions, this egg white scrambles actually tasted pretty good to me. This breakfast burrito only took 10 minutes to make form start to finish even though I'm always a slowpoke in the kitchen.

Makes 2 Burritos

  1. 4 large egg whites
  2. 1/4 cup diced spam (25% less sodium)
  3. 2 tablespoons chopped green onion
  4. 4 tablespoons of shredded Gruyère cheese (or any amount of shredded cheese)
  5. 2 flour tortillas
  6. 2 tablespoons store bought chunky salsa
  1. Spray a frying pan with olive oil and heat on medium high heat for 2 minutes. 
  2. Add diced spams and green onions and sauté until spams are browned.
  3. Whisk the egg white and add to the spam and green onions mixture in the pan.
  4. Scramble the egg white mixture until the egg white is set.
  5. Meanwhile, sprinkle shredded cheese on tortillas and microwave each tortilla on high for 40 to 60 seconds or until cheese begins to melt.
  6. Scoop egg white scramble down the center of each tortilla over cheese. Add salsa and assemble the burritos. 

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Inspiring Bedroom Design From Chinese TV Drama

I'm currently addicted to watching a Chinese TV drama series.  It's been over 10 years since I watched any Chinese language TV dramas from Hong Kong, and this is the first ever TV drama produced by China that I watched in my entire life.  Compared to the ones I spotted on the boring hotel TV (quite similar to the programming in North Korea)  when I was vacationing in China as a kid, China's TV drama nowadays seems to have changed a lot in terms of  the style of the scripts, the screenplay, set design, wardrobe design and even cultural references.   But then an entire new generation had emerged during these years and the country itself  had gone through drastic makeover.  

I found this TV drama quite interesting regardless of whether the story line is good or bad or whether the acting is good or bad. Just from the point of how TV drama had evolved and how unfamiliar I'm to the Chinese culture portrayed on the TV drama.  It again makes me realize how little I know about China today.  And I'm sure most of the people in Hong Kong are unfamiliar with the country as I am  since most of what we heard and learnt from the days when our grandparents escaped the country, are now pretty much outdated. Even my American husband who doesn't understand any Chinese found the few clips I showed him quite amusing. He asked me, "Why are there white people standing in the room on the left? How come they all can speak Chinese?"  I told him those were the French medical team who were employees of this wealthy Chinese guy who owned this huge castle in France, and he happened to also be the owner of  an internationally famous graduate school for music and the performing arts, like Juilliard in New York. My husband just cracked up and said, "So hundreds of million of people in China are now watching this sort of drama? That really gives them something to dream on. Very interesting indeed!!"

I just love all the beautiful and fancy sets, like this bedroom.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Chocolate-Chip Cookies In 1953

Chocolate-Chip Cookies Recipe from 1953

Several days ago, after waiting patiently for all the ingredients to warm up to room temperature, I finally baked my first batch of chocolate-chip cookies of my life.  I like Mrs Fields chocolate-chip cookies so when I saw a very short and seemingly easy recipe from the Better Homes and Gardens Cookbook 1953 Edition that I inherited from one of my husband's dead relatives, I went ahead and tried it out.

I didn't get the soft and chewy Mrs. Fields chocolate-chip cookies that I was craving for. I did however get a batch of delicious cookies that reminded me of the texture of  the Famous Amo's Cookies.  I first tried the Famous Amo's Cookies years ago at the cafeteria of my work.  They were always in the pantry and were one of the "employee benefits" provided by my employer.  But I hated it after one bite.  Since then,  I never tried another Famous Amo's cookie again.  I just didn't like the smell and the taste of it. I'm  very sensitive to hydrogenated oil and artificial flavors because they always made me feel nauseous.  I also didn't like the texture because I prefer soft and chewy cookies.

Now that I had tried out this chocolate-chip cookie recipe from 1953.  I suppose in the 50s, hard and crispy cookies like the Famous Amo's were the mainstream cookie texture?  Unlike my experience with the Famous Amo's brand, I actually love these cookies from this decades old  American recipe!  I'm glad I got to have a taste of the good old times!  They tasted really good.  I dipped them in milk and coffee. I have to say, hard and crisp cookies are the best for coffee dipping.   My husband also hates the Famous Amo's even though he grew up with it. But he loves this home baked version.  Below is the recipe:  (I baked with butter, not margarine because I hate the taste of  margarine also.)

Thursday, October 9, 2014

So I Can't Bake With Ingredients Right Out Of The Fridge?

After reading an old American cookbook, I am craving for chocolate-chip cookies tonight.  I want to make  my first batch of chocolate-chip cookies ever, but then I am confused by whether or not I should melt the butter since the recipe doesn't specify.  I try to look up online whether I should melt the butter but I find this video instead that tells me something I never knew since I started learning how to cook last year.

Now, I'm waiting for the egg and butter to warm up to room temperature.  I'm getting impatient because I have been thinking of Mrs. Fields' cookies and  am  really craving for chocolate-chip cookies now! Besides, I ate supper at 5pm today and I am really hungry.  Time hasn't been passing so slowly since I was in the 4th grade.