Category Archives: Really Ono Food

Hawaiian-Chinese Style Chicken Noodle Soup

I know that I’ve talked about this soup in the past, but it’s been a while and seeing as it’s still kinda cold here, let’s make soup!  This is a super easy, old favorite of mine from Hawaii.

 

Chicken Long Rice

1 boneless-skinless Chicken thigh

2 C. Chicken Broth (I tried Swanson’s Cooking Stock, I really liked it)

2 C. Water

1 Garlic clove, peeled and smashed

½ inch piece of fresh Ginger Root, cut into matchsticks (I used more like an inch)

A pinch of Sea Salt (taste before adding, you may not need it)

1/3 of a package of SaiFun or Bean Threads (Long Rice)

3 Green Onions, cut into 1 inch pieces

In a medium-sized pot, add the water, broth, chicken, ginger and garlic; cook until the chicken is very tender.  Remove the chicken to a bowl and allow to cool slightly.  Shred the meat and return it to the pot.  While the chicken is cooking, place the bean threads into a large bowl of hot tap water to soak for 30 minutes.  Strain the long rice and place into the soup; simmer partially covered for about 30 minutes, until the long rice is also tender.  Add the salt, if needed,  and the greens onions just before serving.

This is my favorite brand of Long Rice

YUM! Chicken Long Rice

This recipe will make 2 very large bowls or 4 small servings.  The dish also freezes very well.  Go ahead and eat those little bits of fresh ginger, this is really good for you, especially when you’re not feeling well, oh and the garlic too.   A trick I learned a long time ago was to take your kitchen shears and cut up the Long Rice in the pot, they are very long.

There are other variations to this recipe, such as adding Black Mushrooms or Hot Chili Peppers.  Some folks do not care for the garlic, others the green onions.  You take this recipe and make it your own, but do try it and let me know what you thought.

Hawaiian comfort food, Chicken Long Rice

Comfort food

My most recent batch of Chicken Long Rice

Aaahhh!

Homemade Char Siu or Chinese BBQ Pork

Since we’ve moved to Northern Arizona, I no longer have an Asian Market within an hour’s drive of our home.  This means that when I run out of one of my beloved local-style foods or ingredient, too bad!  For the most part, I’ve been able to stockpile most of what I need to create the dishes from back home, but one item that is quickly consumed in our house is Char Siu or what folks here on the mainland call Chinese Barbecued Pork.  Other names you may see are chasu, chashao, cha sio and char siew, barbecued meat, xa xiu.  Whichever name you like, its dang delicious!!!

For the most part, I use Char Siu in Noodles Bowls

This Noodle Bowl was mine

And my Fried Saimin or Fried Noodles

So, as I’ve done in a number of cases of need, I figure out how to make it myself.  I watched a bunch of videos and read articles on how to make Char Siu from scratch,  but let’s be real here, I wasn’t about to find Red Fermented Bean Curd (aka Tofu) nor Chinese Rice Wine here in NoAZ.  I did have in my pantry, for a really long time I gotta say, a packet of Noh’s Char Siu Seasoning Mix!!!

I had a very large Pork Butt or Shoulder if you will, almost NINE POUNDS in size, for the intent of making Kalua Pig, but I mean come man, that’s an awful lot.  The smart girl that I am, I lopped off a 2 pound piece and put it aside for my first attempt at making my own Char Siu.

Let’s try!

I opted for the wet marinade as opposed to the dry rub of Noh’s Seasoning.  I took my sharpest knife and made several punctures into the Pork, going all the way through.  I parked my soon to be Char Siu in a large Zip Top bag and left it in the refrigerator for a little more than 24 hours.  At this point I patted the meat dry and arranged it in my adjustable roasting rack.  Into a moderate oven (350⁰) it went until the internal temperature reached 145⁰.

I let the roast cool completely before I sliced into it, YUM!

The taste was there, but I think I can do better next time around, I think I need to slice the Pork thinner, so that the marinade can do its work better.

A Copycat Zippy’s Restaurant Meal In The Middle Of The Desert

If you’re a regular here at My Kitchen In The Middle Of The Desert, you already know that I am a simple local gal from Kaneohe Oahu Hawaii; one of my past times in ten years or so since leaving my birthplace, is to try to re-create dishes of my youth.

You may also know that I have conquered my quest to copycat Zippy’s Macaroni Salad, a local staple.

ON THE MONEY!

So…

In my last post, I was telling you about Zippy’s Fried Chicken.  We had what we thought was the best supper yet, but wait!

I had some chicken leftover, imagine that … so I expanded on that … I made some Mac Salad, a fresh pot of Rice, some warmed-up-from-frozen-Zippy’s Chili that I brought back from Hawaii this past May, and the rest as they say is legend!

 

ALOHA!

Pork and Vegetable Stir Fry, Comfort Food

The weather here in the middle of the desert is changing.  Our overnight lows have crept down to the 30’s if you can believe that.  Since moving here to the mainland from Hawaii and experiencing what real cold is like, I want comfort food, my kind of comfort food.

 

Auntie’s Pork & Veggie Stir Fry

½ lb. Pork, thinly sliced

1 C. Snow Pea, trimmed & cut into bit sized pieces

½ C. Sweet Red (or any other color you like) Bell Pepper, cut into bite sized pieces

¼ C. Sweet White Onion, thinly sliced

2 stalks Green Onion, thinly sliced, separating the white and green parts

4-5 dried Shitake Mushrooms, following package directions to re-constitute and then sliced thin

1 Tbsp. Vegetable Oil (anything but Olive Oil really)

1 tsp. Corn Starch

1 tsp. Shoyu (Soy Sauce)

1 tsp. minced Garlic

1 tsp. grated Ginger

¼ tsp. Salt

1/8 tsp. White Pepper

Stir Fry Sauce:

½ C. Stock or Broth, either Chicken or Pork or Vegetable its up to you

1 Tbsp. Sake

1 Tbsp. Shoyu (Soy Sauce)

1 Tbsp. Oyster Sauce

1 Tbsp. Sesame Oil

Cornstarch Slurry, to your liking (I like a thinner sauce, so I only use about 1 tsp and see how I like it)

 

I start by getting everything prepped, Stir Fry moves fast.

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I use a measuring cup to mix up the sauce; add the Stock/Broth first, next the other wet stuff and stir well.  In a small bowl, start with 1 tsp. of the Cornstarch and add just enough water to make a slurry, set aside.

Combine the Pork with that other teaspoon of Cornstarch and Shoyu.

Heat a large pan over medium-high with the oil.  Once you see wisps of smoke, it’s hot, let’s go!

Add the Pork mixture to that hot pan and stir it around until there’s no more pink to the meat.  Add in the White Onions and stir some more until they’re translucent.  Next goes in the Red Peppers, Snow Peas, Mushrooms and the white part of the Green Onions; stir.  Now toss in the Garlic and Ginger and cook until they’re fragrant.  Pour in that sauce that you combined earlier in the measuring cup, along with the S&P and stir to combine everything.  Cover and reduce the heat to med-low to let the Snow Peas steam for, oh, maybe 2 minutes, we like crisp-tender veggies.

Lastly, give that Cornstarch slurry a stir and add that to the pot, you got it, stirring again!

How’s it look?

Too thin?

Add more slurry to your liking.

Too thick, add some Stock/Broth or even water.

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Sprinkle those thinly sliced Green Onion tops over it and serve warm over noodles or rice or even by itself … we went for Chow Mein noodles.  Now that’s comfort food for us!  And how gorgeous does that look?

As always, remember, a recipe is simply someone’s idea, you take it and make it yours.  Add or delete what your household likes.  Try this with diced Chicken or any other vegetables you like; heh, why not go totally Veggie?

ENJOY!

Olde World Bagels And Market Is No More

This is a sad day.  I was on Face Book last night and saw a post by Olde World Bagels, thanking folks and that they were on to new adventures, WHAT?!  You’re closing? NOOOOOOO!   DH felt that we’d be able to get one more visit in later in the week before they closed, rather than facing a Sunday Rush, but I thought differently.   I got up early this morning and figured I call over there first and ask what their hours were going to be for Monday; I was told that today is their last day; they will no longer be open.  WHAT?!!!  I’ve NEVER gotten dressed and went out the door so fast before.

This is our last dozen Olde World Bagels, ever.  (SSHHH! Don’t tell DH but I hide 6 of them in the deep freeze for later)

Thank you Gina for the best Bagels we’ve ever had and probably will again.

Aloha and all the best in the future to you and your family.

It’s Aloha Friday, No Work Til Tuesday, Well At Least In Hawaii!

That’s right, in Hawaii, today has been designated a holiday, so no work til Tuesday brah!!

So live it up!

Have a terrific Bento Box lunch at Gyotaku Japanese Restaurant (we went to the one in Aikahi, but it’s closed now, dang it!). HEH! This is mine, go get your own!

ALOHA!

Happy Aloha Friday Ono Kine Grindz!

This Aloha Friday, I’m dreaming of Rice Cake and Baked Manapua back home at Chun Wah Kam Noddle Factory in Honolulu Hawaii.

ENJOY YOUR WEEKEND!

A Thank You Gift From Back Home

A couple of weeks ago we had our very first house guests; we were so thrilled to have long time friends from Hawaii come to stay with us.  It was for just one night, but we all had a great time.  DH and I showed them around our new town and we even took them house-hunting.  They are considering buying a home here and living in Arizona part time, that would be AWESOME!

A few days ago, this arrived

Oh my gravy all over my two scoop rice (that’s OMG in my world)!!

A goodie box from Hawaii, how’s that?  That was so sweet and considerate of them to remember all of the local kine grindz that we like.  And can you see on the box itself, “Aloha from Hawaii”, perfect!

Mahalo Aki & Leah, come back soon!

Triple Chocolate Half-Sized Bundt® Cakes, One To Eat and One to Share

I love Bundt® cakes!  For the most part, they’re moist and tasty.  I even have more than one type of Bundt® pan, with another one on its way.

I saw a recipe somewhere for Chocolate Bundtlettes, heh, I have a pan like that!

But as I thought about the recipe, I figured I could one up that!  I’ll make the cake in my Half-sized Bundt® pans and then guild the lily farther.

 

Triple Chocolate Bundt® with a Deluxe Ganache Frosting

1 box Devil’s Food Cake Mix

1 box Instant Chocolate Pudding (the small one)

1 1/3 C. Vegetable Oil

4 Eggs

½ C. warm Water

1 C. Sour Cream

1 C. Chocolate Chips

Preheat the oven to 350⁰

In a Stand Mixer or using a Hand Mixer, combine all of the ingredients until smooth, excluding the Chocolate chips, stir those in last.  The batter with be like thick pudding.  Using a Baking Spray, grease the two Half-sized Bundt® pans; immediately pour the batter evenly between the two pans (I use a scale to be accurate).  Bake for 20-30 minutes, until a cake tester comes out clean.

Place the cakes on a cooling rack and set aside until completely cooled and then turn them out (I run a disposable plastic knife around the edge of the pan first) on to the rack, fitted in a sheet pan.

Now comes the fun part, frosting and decorating those two cuties!

I wanted a bumped up Ganache Frosting, so I kinda winged it.

Deluxe Ganache Frosting

1 C. Chocolate Chips

1 C. Half and Half (or Cream, we use ½ & ½ in our coffee)

½ C. Shredded Sweetened Coconut

½ C. Chopped Pecans

In a glass bowl, heat the ½ & ½  in the microwave for 30 seconds or so, just til hot but not boiling.  Add the Chocolate Chips and stir gently until all of the Chocolate is melted.  You might need to “nuke” it again for a few seconds.

Pour the still warm Ganache over the two cakes; sprinkle the Coconut and Pecans into the Ganache, pressing very lightly in so that they stick.

Slice and enjoy with a cup of coffee or a big glass of cold milk.

I took one of the cakes to our next door neighbors and put the other one into our Covered Cake Plate.

It should keep for 4-5 days, that is if you don’t devour it!

ENJOY!

More Lemons, Meyer Lemon Bars

I think my brain is stuck on Lemons just now…

Meyer Lemon Bars

For the crust:

1 ¼ C. All purpose Flour

½ C. Powdered Sugar

1 Tbsp. Corn Starch

½ C. softened Unsalted Butter

For the filling:

3 Eggs

1 ½ C. Granulated Sugar

The zest of 1 Meyer Lemon

½ C. freshly squeezed Meyer Lemon Juice (approx. 2 Lemons)

½ C. All purpose Flour

Extra Powdered Sugar to dust the tops later

Preheat the oven to 350⁰

Line an 8×8 square pan with parchment paper.

Super easy crust for Meyer Lemon Bars

I almost forgot to remove the Alligator Clips before I put this in the oven 😀

In a large bowl, combine the dry ingredients for the crust with a whisk; cut in the Butter with a fork or pastry cutter until it’s crumbly (I used a Food Processor, it’s faster and easier).

Transfer the mixture to the pan and press the dough firmly into the bottom of the pan; bake for 10 minutes.

Whisk together the filling ingredients, minus that extra Powdered Sugar; pour the filling mixture over that still hot crust and bake for another 25 minutes or until the filling is set.

Cool on a rack to room temp and then refrigerate uncovered for at least 2 hours.

Dust the top liberally with that extra Powdered Sugar and slice, how good does that look?!

*Cooks note: If you can’t find Meyer Lemons, regular Persian Lemons are perfectly fine, just a little bit more tart than Meyers.  I like to freeze Meyer Lemon juice in half cup portions when they’re in season, November through March.

ENJOY!