Monthly Archives: March 2013

Real Quick Like, Okay?!

Busy, busy, busy today and not a lot of time on my hands. But I just had to share this with you; a friend of mine emailed this photo to me. At first I just chuckled to myself and then I started to think about it, Hey! Wouldn’t that be neat to try to make this?


The ‘Hello Kitty’ shape is Maki Sushi.  If you recall Maki Sushi For Dummies, Like Me ?  Same technique.  The Panda bears are another type of sushi, Musubi.  These guys don’t have any spam or hot dogs or any meat at all.  I have to share that with you another time.

Love On A Plate From Hawaii, Zippy’s Chicken & Chili

I know that folks on the mainland talk about chicken and waffles, shot, we even had chicken and waffle potato chips yesterday (not a fan). Back home in Hawaii, on the island of Oahu to more specific, one of our favorite places to eat is Zippy’s. I would hope that you’ve already read about my quest to figure out how to make Zippy’s Macaroni Salad, the best in the world mac salad. I tried for years to figure out how to replicate this recipe, here in the middle of the desert and finally nailed it not so long ago. There are two other dishes that are equally renowned and those are Zippy’s Fried Chicken and Chili.


That’s OMG! in my world, and I’m shouting because when you put those two together with two scoops of rice AND the mac salad, you will be in heaven.

When we first left Hawaii for Arizona and would go back for visits, we always brought home frozen packages of the Chili, the chicken, well, you just have to eat your share while you’re in Hawaii.

I think that I might almost be on to a mashed-up recipe of sorts that is getting very close to getting the chicken down too. I’ll let you know.

Now the Chili is a whole ‘nother bag of beans, it’s proving to be very difficult. It’s not quite like a Cincinnati chili, but kind of. As you can see, it’s very thick for one thing, and the taste is so unique. I’ve saved the ingredient panel from the box that the frozen package comes in, but I haven’t been able to get it right, YET!

In the mean time, we have one more package of frozen Zippy’s Chili in the deep freezer, so I guess that means that we have to make another trip back home!

Frozen Zippy’s Chili



Another Idea For Food As Gifts

This past Christmas, I made up a little something for both my mother and sister.  They both ask me over and over how I make my Quick Cucumber Kim Chee.  I have an old word processing program that has the cutest collection of recipe cards that you can make yourself.  So, I sat down and thought about it, printed out the cards and pulled down some of my empty spice jars.  My trusty label maker still worked, thank goodness.  And Bob’s your uncle, a nifty food gift.

food as gifts

You could make up a collection of different spices and rubs that you have in your own kitchen, and share them with someone else as a gift.  When we first moved to the middle of the desert, I went out to supply our new home.  I shared half of each jar of spice that I bought with my mom (she got me an entire case of spice jars 48 in all, when all I wanted was 12).

Repeat Of A Very Good Thing

I wanted to repost this about making my quick cucumber kim chee. As I was re-reading some of my past blogs, I noticed that I have more than one photo that includes this fast, easy and flavorful addition to just about any meal. If you are so inclined to make this side dish and you can’t find this product in your local ‘asian market’, try the hyperlink to Noh’s website and order it on line. If for some off chance you do not care for the kim chee, you can always create a unique gift for someone.


My Kitchen In The Middle Of The Desert

I got a request today on the Cucumber Kim Chee, delish! And WAY easy to make.

I like Hot house or English Cucumbers, here in the middle of the desert, I can’t find Japanese Cucumbers. That varietal was developed by the University of Hawaii, and I highly doubt that I will ever find them here in AZ. No need to peel them, just a nice rinse under the tap.

I rough chop them into goodly bite-sized pieces, and plop them into a salad spinner. Take about 1-2 tablespoons of Sea Salt (or Kosher, whatever you have on hand), give them a mix around and leave them sit for 15 minutes. Rinse & drain well, that’s where the salad spinner comes in handy. In a non-reactive bowl (I use a glass one), dump in the cucs and hold your nose, this stuff will make you sneeze, cough, gasp. Sprinkle with some

View original post 76 more words

Plate Lunch Special, Chicken Katsu

Did we talk about the different foods that we eat in Hawaii?

Sure we have, what about Chicken Katsu?

Chicken Katsu Plate Lunch

Oh my, served with some steamed medium grain white rice, Aloha Shoyu and Furikake and a side of my quick cucumber kim chee, MAN!

The main dish here is uber easy…

Chicken Katsu

2-4 boneless-skinless Chicken thighs (or breast)

1 egg white, beaten

1 C Panko bread crumbs

¼ C Rice Flour (Mochiko)

Vegetable Oil

Pound the chicken meat just so that all of the pieces are even in thickness. Set up you breading station, rice flour, egg white and Panko. I keep a clean plate on the side as a landing spot once each piece of meat has been breaded. Dip the chicken, one at a time into the rice flour, shaking off the excess and then into the egg white and lastly the Panko. Press the Panko into the flesh and set aside. Repeat until all pieces are done, and stash in the refrigerator. In the mean time, in the largest skillet that you have add enough vegetable oil so that you come up the side of the pan about ½ inch deep. Heat over medium-high heat until the oil reaches 350⁰. If you don’t have a thermometer, the end of the handle of a wooden spoon will work. If you dip the end into the oil and it bubbles, you’re good to go. Carefully place as many pieces of chicken into the pan without crowding them. Fry on both sides until GBAO (golden brown and ONO, or delicious). As each piece is done, place on a rimmed baking sheet with a wire rack in it rather than on paper towels. This way that beautiful crispy crust you just achieved will stay that way. If need be, place the entire pan into the oven (150⁰) to keep them warm until rest are finished and you are ready to serve.

This recipe feeds two adults

Let’s talk about how to serve this dish. The way that we do it back home is you place each piece onto a cutting board and slice into one inch strips, crosswise. Place the strips on to a plate, together, along side the rice and veggie of your choice. Sauce is optional. We prefer not to, but if you must…


1/3 C. Ketchup

1/3 C. Soy Sauce

2 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce

You can either be a dipper or a pourer over all the chicken. If I do have sauce, I’m a dipper.

Chicken Katsu Plate Lunch

This here is what we would call a plate lunch in Hawaii.  Another variation to the plate would be a HUGE scoop of Macaroni Salad or a small toss (or green salad with French dressing, always!).  I know I put up the same photo twice, but I mean come on, how GOOD does that look.



TJ’s Easy Supper

You all might have picked up on the fact that I really like Trader Joe’s; that’s one of 4 places that I do my grocery shopping at. Some of their premade items, either in the cold or freezer case are terrific. We haven’t come across anything that we didn’t care for yet. I know I said I make our meals from scratch, but we do make exceptions from time to time.

Yesterday, my poor mother had yet another doctor’s appointment, and as I do on those days, I took her to lunch. This time at an extremely non-descript location (we won’t speak of it, the food was not very good), but very close by TJ’s. I’ve gotten mom hooked on several things. Not too long ago, I finally got mom to admit that she doesn’t cook anymore and buys ONLY premade dishes. I have been trying to get her to refrain from buying the brands that have a laundry list of ingredients you can’t pronounce.

Trader Joe's Mushroom Ravioli with Mushroom Truffle Sauce

Pasta is something mom likes almost as much as my husband. The thing is she doesn’t want to go to all the trouble involved in making it.

Delicious TJ's Mushroom Ravs with Truffle Sauce

These mushroom ravs with a truffle sauce fits that bill nicely.

TJ's Filone Bread

A small side salad and a piece of Trader Joe’s par baked Filone bread, that’s good eats.


Looks Like Spring

As I went through the produce at the green grocer the other day, I saw asparagus, WHAT? Already? It seems a little early, but I’ll take it, I mean buy it.

Chinese style Chicken Asparagus

Chinese-style Chicken and Asparagus


3 boneless-skinless Chicken thighs, cut into bite size pieces (or breast meat if you prefer)

An equal amount of Asparagus, cut into large bite size pieces

Garlic, sliced, as much or as little as you like

1 Tbsp. fresh Ginger, finely grated

Vegetable Oil

2 Tbsp. Low-sodium Soy Sauce

2 Tbsp. Low-sodium chicken broth

1 Tbsp. Mirin

1 tsp Sesame Oil

1 tsp Corn Starch

1-2 stalks Green Onion, sliced


Heat a large skillet with just enough oil to coat the bottom of the pan; sauté the chicken until just done. Add the asparagus with just a little water into the pan. Cover and allow the veg to steam until crisp tender. Add in the garlic and ginger; cook for 30 seconds. In a small dish, mix together all of the liquids and whisk in the corn starch. Pour the mixture over the chicken & veg, once it comes to a bubble, add the green onions, reserving some of the onions to top your dish. Once the sauce has thickened to your liking, serve over steamed rice or noodles.


This recipe serves two very hunger adults.

This recipe can be adapted to any meat you prefer, as well as veggie.  If the snow peas look good that day at the market, go for it.

Remember that a recipe is just someone else’s idea, you take it and run with it.



Fresh Eggs, REALLY Fresh Eggs

Our DF’s who live up North in Prescott, have a chicken coop with six nice girls who provide them with fresh eggs. While we were there last, Missus DF took me out to the coop and two of the girls had JUST laid eggs.

Really Fresh Eggs

WOW! They were still warm.

They sent us home some eggs, so the next morning I got CRACKIN’

Really Fresh Eggs

I had some Trader Joe’s Chicken Sweet Italian Sausages, homes fries and scrambled some the eggs. It was delicious. Neither DH nor I had ever had an egg right from the hen before. I can’t say that they tasted any differently, but the novelty of it was fantastic.



Happy Belated St. Patrick’s Day!


Been down for the count the past couple of days, but I had to rally back and get myself up for this past Sunday. Our next door neighbors hosted a block party, so how could we decline? I wanted to try a new recipe for Baileys Irish Cream cake, what a better time, right?

Baileys Irish Cream Cake

It came out so pretty! I baked it off on Friday, so that all the goodness could soak in. It took all of my Dearest Husband’s will power NOT to eat it prior to Sunday. He made it through with flying colors though. The block party was pot luck as well as BYOCAD, bring your own chair and drink, we opted for water. As we stepped out our door on to the street, OH MY GAWD!!! There must have been a hundred people, where’d they come from? The hostess informed us there were 75 RSVP’s and a lot were former neighbors who had moved away, but just loved the ‘hood that much. We found a spot on the groaning table of desserts and marked our territory in the street for the festivities. It really was a lot of fun.

st patrick s day block party 002

We were the last folk in line for our Corned Beef and Cabbage supper, but not the last for dessert. As I approached the table, there was only one piece of the cake left, but nothing else was even touched. So I quick ran in the house to grab my camera for a photo-op. It tasted good too!


Not Feeling Well Today

… I’ll get back to you soon