It's hard for me to have two active projects at once. I started my Teochew site in 2018, then took a break from it and started my food blog in 2019. Now that I'm working on the Teochew site again, it's hard for me to find the energy to devote to the food blog. But I did take a few pictures, so I wanted to share some of the things I cooked (or helped cook) over the past couple of weeks.
Bao wasn't the only exciting food I helped make while I visited my grandma's. We made fresh spring rolls every day for "pre-dinner snack". It seemed a little excessive, but it was delicious.
I need to figure out how my aunt prepared that pork. It was SO GOOD. On the first day, I just ate three spring rolls, but by the last day, I was eating five, which is more than I what I eat for a meal sometimes. It's okay. It's healthy.
When I got back, I made some strawberry pizza. (I actually made it twice!) My sister and I made this pizza way back when I first started the food blog, and it was one of my favorite recipes that we tried. I think it tasted good, but not as amazing as when I had it with my sister. On my second attempt, I added goat cheese, and I think that was a good addition.
Every other week, I have a "co-working day" with my friend, and after work we pick a dish to cook together. This week we made chicken tikka masala and a roasted eggplant salad. It was all very good, but my friend ended up replacing 1.5 teaspoons of chili powder with 2 teaspoons of ground red pepper in the tikka masala, and it was way too much heat for me. I usually only stick to 1/4 teaspoon if I add any hot pepper 🥵
Finally, my boyfriend requested some poke, and while I didn't have any sashimi grade fish on me, I did have half a pound of frozen shrimp. I cooked that and grabbed whatever poke appropriate ingredients I had for toppings. Poke is great because apart from the fish, I really don't have to plan for it at all. I always have poke ingredients in my kitchen.
My favorite pizza topping is tomato. Not tomato sauce, fresh slices of tomato. Why did I decide to make pizza in the first place? Maybe it was because I had a small amount of shredded mozzarella cheese that I wanted to use up.
So, I bought a bag of tomatoes from Aldi. Even though I didn't have too much shredded cheese in the bag, I still wasn't able to use it all up, and now I had four more tomatoes to go along with it. And, I'm gonna detour away from the pizza for a moment to show you a couple of other tomato-y things.
One of the things I made with the other tomatoes was tomato rice. This wasn't bad, but it wasn't great either. I know I was thinking, "hey, I could use up a tomato in this!" But it actually called for diced tomatoes and tomato paste, so this didn't really help me cut down on my tomatoes.
I was able to use up some tomatoes (and mozzarella!) in my tomato and mozzarella panini. This was probably way too much effort for a workday lunch, but it was pretty good! I actually made it twice, and the second time I added basil and mint because I felt like it needed something leafy inside. It was a little strange, but I thought it was a good addition.
But before I made it, I actually went and bought a log of mozzarella because I was worried that my shredded mozzarella wasn't going to be enough. I used up all of the shredded stuff, and then I still had a lot of the mozzarella log left.
And I know. You're seeing a never ending cycle now, where every time I finish using up one ingredient, I still end up having too much of another. Does it ever end???
I don't know. But I'm gonna make more pizza tonight.
This time I won't buy more tomatoes or mozzarella. Hopefully.
The next set of photos I found on my phone were of some pizza I made last spring. I'm sure at the time I struggled with this and I thought I overcooked the dough, but looking back on these photos? This looks delicious.
Man, I really want to get back into cooking.
Another thing that has been sitting in my freezer is marinara sauce. I made a large batch when I made fried mac n cheese, and since I couldn't finish it all, I figured I'd use it to make pizza later. In the meantime, I've been seeing so many pizza commercials on TV. Even Panera has pizza now! I was almost half tempted to buy some! But I didn't. Panera is expensive and you get tiny portions and I spent way way way too much money there when I was in college.
I was trying to think of some good pizza toppings. I feel like pizza should have mozzarella on it, but all I had was a leftover block of cheddar cheese and I did not feel like buying more cheese. And then after thinking about this for five minutes I thought "Forget this. I'm making BBQ chicken pizza." Cheddar and BBQ? That's a great combination.
Now, I'm not much of a baker. Dough kind of scares me. And since my sister isn't here, I of course bought pre-made pizza dough. You'd think this would be easy. Just flatten it out on a pizza pan and put toppings on. But I was struggling. It was so lumpy. I don't know how people make pizzas into such perfect circles. Maybe it's the tossing thing. I'm not gonna toss my pizza dough. That sounds even scarier.
When I took out the block of cheddar, I actually noticed a little bit of mold on it. I contemplated my options. I was wearing sleep clothes already. I did not want to go out and buy more cheese. I went and cut the moldy part off. I ate the pizza with the cheese. I felt fine. I guess it was okay.
Really, it tasted pretty good. But after I ate it I realized something. I forgot pineapples! I bought a can of pineapple chunks solely for this pizza and I totally forgot to add that!
Well, now I have pineapple and marinara sauce that I need to use up.
Day 57 (Thursday): At this point we're just trying to clear some random foods out of our fridge. One thing that always works for this is pizza. We've already done "normal" pizza and BBQ chicken pizza, so we decided to have some Hawaiian pizza this time.
Oh, my sister also made some cheesy bread sticks to go along with it. I don't think she was terribly happy with this dish, but it still tasted good. And it made a great breakfast a couple of days later. I love leftover pizza.
Day 58 (Friday): For the first time in three weeks, I finally started to relax at work. I had been working so much that I actually ended the day at 2pm! This meant that I was able to cook dinner again!
We bought a few eggplants when we last went to the Asian store without knowing what we'd do with them. But eggplant is always good in stir-fry, and I haven't had stir-fried eggplant in a while. My sister really likes it with egg, so we used that instead of ground pork. We ate all of it that night! And since we had a lot of that honey garlic pork left, we ate that as well. Delicious.
Day 59 (Saturday): I was so excited to make some pork tacos, but when I took out the piece of pork, it smelled kind of funky and after pondering about it for a while, my sister and I decided it was best to just throw it out.
But obviously I still wanted tacos, so I walked to Aldi and bought a whole other pork butt.
Hey, I really wanted tacos. Pineapple and pork go really well together. I was also going to make some sriracha mayo, but I decided to make it interesting and put sriracha in sour cream instead. I'm never doing that again. It was weird.
The tacos were delicious though.