Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Scallion Pancakes

Ok… I’m on a carb kick. Let’s face it, who doesn’t love carbs? I promise I will try to tone it down a bit, but for now let’s just revel in the awesome glory of carbohydrates.

Done yet? (Me neither)

So a while back I had a potluck with a bunch of friends and, as oft happens with college kids who have no budget, we ended up with tons of rice and pasta dishes… There was one particular dish that caught my attention though; delicious scallion pancakes! Now I grew up eating authentic Chinese food once in a while, but for whatever reason I can’t remember really having these. Boy, I missed out!

My friend sent me the recipe he used, from Appetite for China. The trick he has is to sub in baking powder for the yeast to avoid the long process of letting dough rise. Once that additional 40+ minutes are removed from the process, making these are a cinch!

These are not your breakfast type of pancakes; this is a sort of tasty appetizer that pairs the striking green bite of scallions with a crisped doughy form that just calls for a bit of soy-sauce drizzled on top! Alright, rambling again…

Scallion Pancakes

1 1/2 Cups all-purpose flour

½ Cup water

½ Cup boiling water

1 ½ Teaspoons baking powder

1 Teaspoon salt

2 Tablespoons vegetable oil

1 Cup finely chopped scallions

Sift together your flour, and salt in a bowl. Pour in your boiling water (it is supposed to kinda cook some of the dough a bit) and mix a bit, then add the rest of the water to start making a dough. You want a rough dough so if it is a bit too mushy add flour very gradually (conversely, add water if it hasn’t really formed a dough). Mix in your oil and give it a quick knead.

Roll out your dough on a floured surface, probably taking balls of dough a little smaller than a baseball. Roll it out pretty thin (about a ¼ inch) and sprinkle with chopped scallions.

1st appearance of a wine bottle as a rolling pin on this blog!

You then roll it up like a carpet so that all the beauteous scallions are inside the roll. Coil like a cinnamon bun (yumm...) and roll till 1/3 inch thick.

Now heat up a non-stick skillet on medium with a little bit of oil and fry these suckers up!

When they start getting that beautiful brown flip em over for a bit and serve fresh off the skillet topped off with a splash of soy-sauce!

Bon appetit!


Tuesday, August 17, 2010

I had one of those moments.
I placed wonderful ingredients together, and created something fantastically delicious...by mistake.
That just gave me the image in Ratatouille when he's explaining the magic of combining foods and the visual is just exploding fireworks.

Anyways, I was trying to just use up ingredients, and thanks to my mom and her fabulous garden I had fresh tomato and cucumber. I also had a mini pita pocket.
Generally my goal with pita pockets is to shove as much stuff in them as physically possible. It's a fun game. Try it.

Tomato and cucumber are boring on their own. Brie cheese is not boring. Melted brie cheese is definintely not boring.

an amazingly melted brie, tomato and cucumber pita pocket. Yes, it is simple, but that was the beauty of it.

It's easy, it's delicious, it's warm, and it uses up the leftover food in my fridge preventing me from having to buy more food.

Unfortunately, I didn't realize how great my creation was until I was a few bits in. The result was some mediocre pictures.

I'll get better at this some day.


Monday, August 9, 2010

This Is Us

I’ve gone through several phases since I noticed that Kai created our blog.
The first day I saw it, I was sitting at work. I immediately wanted to post, I had to post. I HAD to post!
Then I realized…I had nothing too post. So I waited.
Then when I finally cooked something and had pictures to prove it, not only were the pictures more horrible than when my dad decides to document family events with the camera on his blackberry, but the product of my cooking wasn’t exactly…something I wanted to share as of example of my all-star cooking abilities.
Here it is. One month after Kai posted his post, and I still have nothing. Sure I’ve made some food and taken some more pathetic pictures, and hell, Kai and I even cooked together, but nothing has been deemed worthy of my first post.
Well, I have to pop my first post cherry somehow, so why not introduce us!
I present: Kai and Leah……….

Kai Doo

Age: 21
Height: 5'10
Home Town: Honolulu, HI
Educational Status: BA in Spanish, Candidate for a Master’s in Education
Favorite Food to Cook: Pizza (It's just soooo easy)
Favorite Cooking Tool: The Polly Pocket sized whisk
Most Anticipated Recipe: Hearty sandwich bread with more grains than you can count
Worst Cooking Moment: Evacuating the dorm during the middle of the night in Winter due to a fire alarm and blackened peanut butter cookies.
Dream Date: Art museum followed by a picnic at dusk.
Life Ambition: To become OLD
When Not in the Kitchen Kai can be found: frolicking around campus, having spontaneous dance parties in his room, having spontaneous dance parties with Leah, attempting to out-lift the lacrosse team in the gym, scouting out free food opportunities, wishing he was swimming with dolphins, with Leah, and painting.
Favorite Leah Moment: Leah attempting to impress Kai by cracking two eggs at once, but accidentally having had grabbed the hard boiled eggs instead.

Leah Melnick

Age: 21
Height: 5'6
Hometown: Wayland, MA
Educational Status: BA in Environmental Science, Candidate for a Master’s in Environmental Science and Policy
Favorite Food to Cook: Curried Cabbage
Favorite Cooking Tool: Side beer
Most Anticipated Recipe: Gnocchi
Worst Cooking Moment: That time I decided to leave eggs out of pancakes to see what would happen.
Life Ambition: To learn how to make decisions
When Not in the Kitchen Leah Can Be Found: in the library, lost in the aisles of the grocery store, pondering over a useless decision, lecturing friends about the wonders of renewable energy, analyzing beer, texting Kai, calling Kai, stalking Kai, singing Spring Awakening and Sara Bareilles as loud as she can repeatedly, and running.
Favorite Kai Moment: Watching Kai sprint around campus in high heals, fishnet stocking, a tight sparkly dress and a very blond wig.

Kai and Leah

Often Seen:
Throwing food items at each other
Throwing burnt food items at each other
Holding dance parties while cooking
Throwing dance parties after cooking
Yelling at each other
Laughing with each other
Laughing at each other
Laughing at the other while the other is laughing with the other
Drinking beer together
Being snooty about beer together
Actually socializing with other people

The point is, we have fun together and we like to cook. We created this blog to force ourselves to cook together when our schedules started to clash this year, and so that we can document what we are doing in the kitchen while we experiment and (hopefully) increase our kitchen skills. It could go super well, it could be a gigantic disaster which then gets lost in cyber world and will be rediscovered by us when we are 70. Regardless, I’m excited!

I hope if anyone does begin to read this blog that they enjoy it, and maybe even pick up a recipe or two!

So I promise I will work on my camera skills, work on my cooking skills, and get a real post up soon!

Until then,
Happy cooking!