Glass Noodles with Pork

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I have been posting a lot of meat recently, well it seems that way anyway. So today I made a simple Chinese dish that my mom showed me how to make – glass noodles with minced pork. They are also referred to as cellophane noodles and are usually made of starch or beans and water.  I had a package of these glass noodles laying around from before and I know you can get them at most Asian markets, but I don’t know about regular grocery stores. I have never actually looked, but I assume they would be cheaper at Asian markets anyways. So this recipe comes courtesy of my mom and she gave me ingredients but no measurements, so nothing is exact as I am purely guessing/approximating what I used. But all in all, its fairly fast and easy and makes a nice side dish.

Ingredients

  • 8oz pkg of glass noodles
  • 1/2 lb ground pork
  • 5 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp chili paste/chili oil or to taste
  • 3/4 cup dark soy sauce, separated
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp sesame oil
  • 1 tsp white pepper
  • 4 cups of water or until softened
  • 3 green onions, chopped

Recipe:

  • Marinate the ground pork in 1/2 cup of dark soy sauce
  • Saute the pork with the garlic and chili paste in a wok or large sauce pan over medium heat
  • Add the glass noodles to the wok and add ~3 cups of water, 1/4 cup soy sauce, salt, white pepper, and sesame oil
  • Add more water if the noodles are still absorbing it (they soak up a lot)
  • Top with green onions and enjoy

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Sesame Peanut Noodles

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So it has been FOREVER since I last posted, and by forever I mean 2 months.  That doesn’t mean I haven’t been cooking, but these past 2 months have been crazy.  So here is a simple vegetarian asian noodle dish I made a little while ago.  I actually got the recipe from the comments section of this Yahoo! Food article.

Ingredients

  • 1 lb noodles (I used a thin Chinese noodle)
  • 1 red bell pepper, slice
  • 1 cucumber, julienned
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1/4 cup rice vinegar
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp sesame oil
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 Garlic Cloves
  • 1 green onion, chopped

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Directions

  • Boil the noodles and drain
  • Slice the bell pepper and chop the green onion and set aside
  • In a food processor, blend the peanut butter, vinegar, soy sauce, sesame oil, salt, and garlic together
  • Add the water and blend again
  • Add over the noodles and mix thoroughly
  • Add the bell pepper and green onions

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Pasta Carbonara

So on my home from work today, I was thinking spaghetti because I was feeling lazy. And what is easier than ground beef and pasta sauce? But then I thought I should put in some effort and stopped at the market to buy some bacon in order to make a carbonara. I love carbonara and order it quite often. I enjoy the creaminess of the pasta, and of course, the bacon/pancetta. So I started to make this dish, and guess what? NO CREAM. I had no idea. I would have put money on it that there was some heavy cream involved. But alas, there is not, which isn’t a bad thing. I got the recipe from the Food Network.  Other than that, this dish came out quite well, but it was fairly heavy, and we had no room for dessert after (even though I had bought a cheesecake).

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Ingredients

  • 1lb spaghetti
  • 2 tbsp EVOO
  • 4 bacon strips sliced (I used 8 lol)
  • 4 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup grated parmesan
  • Pepper
  • Fresh parsley, chopped

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Directions

  • Salt and boil pasta
  • While pasta is cooking, fry the bacon in a large, deep skillet on medium heat until crisp
  • Add the garlic and continue to saute for a minute
  • Mix the 2 eggs and parmesan cheese together, avoiding clumps
  • Drain the noodles well, and toss into the bacon fat, coating them well
  • Mix the noodles in the fat for a minute over heat
  • Remove the pan from heat and mix in the egg and parmesan mix, allowing the hot noodles to cook the eggs
  • Add a dash of chopped parsley to each plate and enjoy

 

Spicy Turkey Sausage Pasta

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The other day I got some spicy turkey Italian sausages from the market.  This is the first time I have ever bought turkey sausage, so I had no idea how it would taste (generally I am a pork all the way kind of guy).  You can definitely taste the difference, but its still pretty good and healthier, so I suppose that’s a plus.  In the past, I have either grilled them up and put them in a bun and called it a day, or made a standard spaghetti and threw them on top.  This time though, I thought I would try to incorporate the sausage a little more, so I made a penne pasta with a light marinara sauce and sausage.  I did not work off any kind of recipe, so feel free to make your own stuff up too.

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Ingredients

  • 1 lb of penne pasta
  • 4 Italian sausages (spicy)
  • 2 yellow/orange bell peppers (chopped)
  • 1/2 red onion (coarsely chopped)
  • 3 cloves of garlic minced
  • 1 1/2 cup marinara sauce
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Parmesan cheese

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Directions

  • Boil the pasta and set aside
  • In a large skillet, grill the whole sausages until they are approximately 1/2 cooked (~4 min on each side)
  • Chop the red onion and the bell peppers
  • Take the sausages off and cut them into slices
  • Continue to cook the sliced sausages on high heat until done
  • Remove the sausages, and add the garlic, onions and bell peppers to the pan
  • Saute the onions and bell peppers until cooked (may need to add a little oil)
  • Add the sausages back to the pan and continue to saute for a minute on medium heat
  • Add the marinara sauce and bring to a light bubble
  • Add the penne and mix throughly
  • Sprinkle some parmesan cheese and enjoy

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Shrimp Scampi Linguine

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Today was an easy going day. I left work early, took a nap, and decided to make a pasta for dinner. Shrimp was on my mind, so the obvious choice was to make a shrimp scampi. I really like shrimp scampi, but weirdly, I have never ordered it at a restaurant, nor have I ever made it before. I guess that is because my mom loves shrimp scampi and it’s almost a 100% guarantee that she will order it, which would allow me to finish her meal or at least steal some when we go out. But today I made it for the first time, but definitely not the last. Oh, and I got the recipe courtesy of the Food Network.

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Ingredients

  • 1 lb pasta (I used linguine)
  • 4 tbsp butter
  • 4 tbsp EVOO
  • 2 shallots, finely diced (I used red onions since I already had some)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • Pinch red pepper flakes,to taste
  • 1 lb shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine (I used a Pino Grigio)
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped parsley leaves

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Directions

  • Salt and boil pasta, then drain
  • Melt 2 tbsp butter in 2 tbsp EVOO in a large skillet or saucepan over med-high heat
  • Saute shallots (onions), garlic, and pepper flakes until the onions are cooked through
  • Salt and pepper the shrimp
  • Add the shrimp to the pan and cook until pink/orange, then remove the shrimp
  • Add the wine and lemon juice, bring to a boil
  • Add 2 tbsp EVOO and melt 2 tbsp butter into the liquid
  • Add the shrimp, parsley, and pasta to the mix
  • Add salt and pepper and mix thoroughly
  • Eat it!

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The recipe online also says to drizzle some EVOO on top at the end, but I found this to be unnecessary since there was plenty of oil before that, so I didn’t add any.  This recipe was a lot simpler and quicker than I thought it would be, which is pretty awesome, because it was pretty delicious. Add some parmesan cheese and top it with some parsley and that’s it. Hope you enjoy it too.

Somen Salad

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Today was really hot, so I decided to make a salad for lunch. Now when I say salad, don’t think lettuce with this one. This is more of a “pasta salad” with somen noodles, a really thin Japanese noodle. I got this recipe from my mom because I loved it as a kid growing up. She always loathed making it because of all the cutting, but did it anyways because she knew how much I liked it. The recipe itself is super easy, its just slightly labor intensive when it comes to adding stuff, due to chopping and julienning. But if you have a peeler that juliennes like I do, then its pretty quick. I should get my mom one so that she can keep making this for me lol. Anyways, here it is.

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Ingredients

  • 5 tbsp Rice Vinegar
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • Dash of ground ginger
  • 5-8 slices of deli ham, chopped (or some other kind of meat)
  • 2 eggs, fried, chopped
  • 2 green onions, chopped
  • 1 Cucumber, julienned
  • ~1 lb of somen noodles (the package I bought was 14oz)

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Instructions

  • Mix the vinegar, sugar, soy sauce, sesame oil, salt, and ginger in a bowl and refrigerate
  • Boil the somen noodles until cooked (be aware, they cook fast), and then rinse with cold water (you want the noodles to be fairly cold when you eat)
  • Fry the 2 eggs
  • Chop/julienne the cucumbers, eggs, green onions, and ham
  • Add them to the noodles, pour the sauce over it, mix, and enjoy!

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Roasted Tomato Spaghetti

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So I was trolling Yahoo! Food and came across this recipe for a slow roasted tomato sauce. With nothing better to make, I decided to try it. I realized half way through that I had no meat to pair with it, and was super close to running to the market to pick up something, but ended up doing something more unbelievable…leaving it a vegetarian meal. Both proud and disappointed at the same time, this meal was decent, but not what I expected. I followed the recipe exactly, but it ended up being a little too sweet for my taste (maybe less balsamic next time), or adding meat (the salt from meat would probably even it out).

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Ingredients

  • 1.5 lbs cherry tomatoes
  • 3 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 1/2 cup EVOO
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme
  • 2 teaspoons packed light-brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon coarse salt

Instructions

  • Mix tomatoes and garlic in a baking dish
  • Mix EVOO, balsamic, thyme, brown sugar, and salt in a bowl
  • Pour mix over the tomatoes
  • Bake at 325 degrees for about an hour

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So after they were baked/roasted, I honestly did not know what to do with them. I tried to break the tomatoes and mix them to make a sauce, but while the tomatoes broke, the skins didn’t really reduce. So I ended up putting a few of the tomatoes in the food processor and pulsing it a bit to make a sauce that I could mix with my spaghetti. Overall, it was like I said earlier – not what I expected, but I would definitely try it again with a few adjustments.