Roasted Figs with Buche de Chevre & Balsamic Glaze

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There was a skinny fig tree in front of my childhood home — the original home, the only one that appears in my dreams, that I have hopelessly yearned for since the day I left for America.

Throughout my childhood, I remember tasting a sweet ripe fig only once. I grew up in the years of extreme food scarcity and no child could wait until the figs were ripe to harvest them. My brother and I began picking them earlier each year because we wanted to get them before the other children in the neighborhood could steal them. We tried to leave the raw figs in the rice sack or in the sun for them to ripen, but the figs stayed hard no matter how long we waited. 

One day, I was idling by the 2nd floor window daydreaming, which was something children often did in that era. A gentle breeze ruffled the leaves of the fig tree and a pinkish purplish bulb caught my eye. A ripe fig! I had never before seen a fig like this, rufescent and drooped from the slightly wilted stem. I nearly killed myself trying to pluck it with the help of a clothe hanger. I quickly stuffed it in my mouth before anyone could see me. There are no words that can describe the intense and shocking burst of pleasure as my teeth sunk into the flesh of that fig.

As I prepared these roasted figs today, I felt a nostalgic tug in my heart — a nameless longing. Was I twelve or thirteen? What was I daydreaming about? The neighbor boy with a “bad reputation” to play badminton with? The faraway lands I secretly read about in forbidden hand copied books? Or was it food? I was always a little hungry in those days and food was never far from my thoughts.

Not in my wildest dreams would I have imagined roasting dozens of ripe figs in an oven — a wonderful contraption I didn’t know existed until I came to the US.

As I used to daydream by the window, I now do by the oven. These roasted figs are sumptuous. They are great as appetizer, dessert or a snack. I used Buche de Chevre which was absolutely exquisite, but goat cheese will also taste great with it. The balsamic glaze is an important ingredient that is not optional in my mind. It is a perfect finishing touch to complete the dish.

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Roasted Figs with Buche de Chevre & Balsamic Glaze

Figs

Brown sugar

Buche de Chevre

Balsamic Glaze

Pinch of salt

Pine nuts

Mint leaves

Olive oil spray

Preparation:

Preheat the oven to 425°F.

Rinse the figs and pat them dry, then cut off the stems and, without cutting through the base, halve them from top to bottom.

Spray a baking pan with good olive oil. Dip the cut side of the fig in a dish of brown sugar. Line the figs cut side up in the baking pan.

Bake until the sugar is bubbling and the figs is heated through, about 15 minutes.

Sprinkle broken cheese on top. Drizzle with balsamic glaze. Top with pine nuts and mint leaves. Serve warm.

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Soy Braised Pork Knuckle

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I went to the Asian Art Museum in San Francisco the other day to see the Emperors’ Treasures exhibition.  One of the treasures was called “Meat Shaped Stone.” The director of the museum Jay Xu is from Shanghai as I am and we chatted about how growing up we all loved the braised pork belly that looked exactly like the stone on display. I felt inspired to make a Shanghainese braised pork knuckle after I left the museum.

When Angela and I started this blog nearly two years ago, we had set out to make very healthy food with lots of vegetables and very low fat. Angela has been a vegetarian since she was five or six years old and Audrey became a vegetarian after watching the film Food Inc two summers ago.  Angela, the food police of our family, lost interest in our joint venture a few months after we began as she started writing for her own blogs about topics that interested her more. Without Angela’s scrutiny, I slowly began to use more oil when I stir fried, full fat yogurt instead of fat free yogurt in my desserts and real wheat flour instead of almond flour or coconut flour when I baked.

Now that Angela has left for college and Audrey is taking a break from her vegetarianism, we have pork back in our lives again. I used to eat pork knuckle a couple of times a month in my twenties and thirties, but I hardly cooked any pork since Angela became a vegetarian. 

A Beatles Song Norwegian Wood came to my mind as I cooked this pork knuckle. Yes, this bird has flown. Angela is no longer here to say, oh that smell is disgusting mommy.

How I miss her!

Soy Braised Pork Knuckle

Ingredients:

2 cups Shao Xing Wine

4 cups water

2 tablespoons soy sauce

1 tablespoon dark sauce

1 1/2 to 2 tablespoons cooking oil

1 teaspoon Sichuan peppercorn

1 clove anise

1 1/2 inch ginger, sliced

6 cloves garlic, crushed

1 tablespoon rock sugar or brown sugar

1 stick cinnamon

3 dried red chili pepper

1 pork knuckle

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Preparation:

Heat the oil in a medium pot on medium high. When the oil is hot, add ginger, garlic, anise, peppercorn, dried chili and cinnamon stick. Stir until aromatic.

Add the pork knuckle and brown it on all sides.

Turn stove to low and add soy sauce. Turn the pork knuckle a few times in the soy sauce mixture.

Add Shao Xing Wine and water. Turn stove to high and bring the pot to boil. Turn the stove to low and let simmer for 2 hours. 

Turn the stove to high and reduce the liquid to half. Serve on a bed of blanched or stir fried vegetables.

Note: The Shao Xing wine that one buys in the US is salty for tariff reasons. If your Shao Xing wine is not salty you can add more soy sauce. 

Braised Fish Maw & Some Other Musings

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Many of you might never have heard of it, but fish maw is considered a delicacy in China — one of the four treasures of the sea. It has also been documented, since the Han Dynasty, as a tonic for strengthening one’s tendons and bones.  In today’s China, women believe it to be a beauty food because of it’s high collagen content.  I have eaten it in the past, but have not cooked it myself until today.

Pikky’s mother, who had brought me the fish maw the other day, gave me a recipe, but I didn’t have many of the ingredients she listed, and decided to improvise with what I had on my shelf.  I suppose I gave it a Shanghainese twist.  A few adventurous eaters from our Marco Polo production ate it and claimed that they absolutely loved it, which surprised me, and pleased me to no end.  As a friend of mine commented that those were the loyal hungry subjects of the Hungry Empress.

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I leave for Shanghai tomorrow and will bring some fish maw back to cook it for my parents.  They are both getting frail with age and I want to spend as much time with them as I can.

My father is hard of hearing and my mother has early stage of dementia. They have been helping each other in the recent years — one hears and the other remembers. Together, they have lived as one whole person.

Mother was a brilliant researcher in the field of neuropharmacology.  As she began to lose her short term memory, her critical thinking and analytical ability were still intact and she was clear-eyed about her poor prognosis.  She told me that there is no cure yet for damaged brain cells.

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Mother

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My father with me in front of our house in Shanghai

When I called her two days ago about my trip to Shanghai, I was not sure if she would remember it later. I thought of calling her again today to remind her.  Sometimes, I would call her everyday about the same thing until she got it. For instance, I told her that I was filming in Malaysia at least five times until she finally committed it to memory. Now she knows where I am, most of the time.  When I turned on the computer to Skype her, I was happy to see an email from her, clearly remembering our conversation and asking for my arrival time.  Her very selective short term memory can still retain what’s truly meaningful and important to her. 

For as long as I could remember, I have admired my mother for her beauty, intelligence and talent. When I was a child, all my school friends admired her and wanted to grow up to be like her. 

After her retirement, my mother took up piano full time and won First Place in a city wide competition in Shanghai for her age group 10 years ago. When her arthritis became more severe, she changed her style from classical to what she called Jazz — freer, more expressive but less demanding on her fingers’ precision. Now she plays the piano as part of her daily routine to stall the progression of dementia.

Sometimes, I panic a little when I see how old age has ravaged them, but when I hear my mother play the piano, I calm down with the knowledge that there is still much vitality and joy left in her.  As I write, I have the picture in my mind: Mother is playing the piano with her arthritic fingers while Father sits next to her focusing on the computer screen, polishing the radiology textbook that he, at age 84, will publish this year, completely deaf to and unperturbed by Mother’s banging on the piano.  They remind me to seize every moment and to capture every drop of joy in life.

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Braised Fish Maw

Ingredients:

3 cups Fish Maw (after soaking, squeezing out the water and slicing)

1 cup Shao Xing cooking wine

1 1/2 cup water (separated)

3 tablespoon soy sauce

2 teaspoon oyster sauce

1 teaspoon sugar

2 teaspoon cornstarch

1 teaspoon Chinese peppercorn

8 slices ginger

6 cloves garlic, crushed

1 green chili pepper

1 red chili pepper

4 small Thai red onion or small shallots

1 carrot, sliced diagonally

6 oz. snow peas

Cilantro leaves and chopped green onion for garnish, optional

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Preparation:

Soak the processed fish maw.  They come deep fried into crispy chips, much like the pork skin crackling chips.  When they become soft, wash them and squeeze out the water 4 to 5 rounds.  Cut them into 2 inch or smaller pieces.

Mix cornstarch, 1/2 cup water, sugar. Set aside.

In a wok, heat 2 teaspoon oil and sauté on medium high ginger, garlic, pepper, peppercorn until aromatic and add sliced fish maw.  Give it a few good stir and add the wine and soy sauce and water and cover the lid.  Lower heat to medium and let cook for 5 to 8 minutes. 

In the meantime, in a separate pan, sauté the shallot, carrot and snow peas until tender crispy.

When the liquid in the wok with fish maw is reduced to almost nothing, add the sautéd vegetables and the cornstarch mixture.  Toss to mix and coat.

Garnish and serve hot with rice.

I added a few pieces of tofu to braise together with the fish maw, thinking that if someone did not like fish maw, he could eat the tofu, but everyone who tried loved the fish maw.

Serve hot with rice or noodle.

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Cauliflower Fried Rice

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I am beginning to pack again for the last leg of my European travel — Slovakia.  As I often do before a trip, I went to the library to borrow a book that I otherwise would not read if I wasn’t stranded midair on a transcontinental flight — Simone Weil’s Gravity and Grace.  I leafed through the pages and found the following sentences, “Attention, taken to its highest degree, is the same thing as prayer. It presupposes faith and love.  Absolutely unmixed attention is prayer.”  Weil believed in the meditative power of the inner supplication we call “attention” as a superior tool for self-transformation.  Instead of will, she suggested we try to “cure our faults by attention.”

I was piqued by the topic of attention because it seems to be the hardest thing to have in this age of multi-tasking and non-stop stimulation/distraction from every direction.  Sometimes my entire family is glancing at different devices and returning emails and texts when we eat our meals.  It is not that we need it all the time, but I think it would be nice to truly pay attention to each other as if we are all on our first date with someone we like.

In another of Weil’s books First and Last Notebooks she writes, “Attention is the rarest and purest form of generosity.”  This was true for her time, but much truer for ours — a time when attention is often carved into little snippets and thrown at whichever way the wind is blowing.

On the day the DOW fell nearly 600 points, let’s pay “absolutely unmixed attention” to the part of lives that are not and can never be commodified — our most intimate relationships, our moral fortitude, our spirit and our understanding of what it means to be human — and be thankful that that essential part of us is well. 

For food, I cooked cauliflower fried rice.  The versatile cauliflower did it again! This “fried rice” is absolutely delicious.

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Cauliflower Fried Rice

Ingredients:

1 medium cauliflower, florets only

1/2 onion, finely chopped

1/3 carrot, finely chopped

5 to 6 stocks green onion, chopped

4 to 5 cloves garlic, minced or crushed

2 to 3 thin slices peeled ginger, minced

2 eggs + 2 egg whites, beaten

1 red Jalapeno pepper, seeded and finely chopped

1/4 cup frozen peas

1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon yellow curry paste

1 tablespoon low sodium soy sauce

1 tablespoon or less fish sauce

1/4 teaspoon brown sugar

3 tablespoon canola oil or other cooking oil, separated

Red pepper flakes to taste and for garnish

Preparation:

Pulse the washed and dried florets in food processor in small batches.  Make sure the florets are completely dry and don’t over process.  I hand chopped a small batch to give it a little more texture.

Beat the eggs and egg whites with a pinch of salt and a pinch of minced green onion, garlic, and ginger.  Let it sit while you prepare the other vegetables.

Mix curry paste, soy sauce, fish sauce and sugar in a small bowl.

Heat a non-stick pan on medium high with 1 tablespoon of oil.  Stir fry the egg mixture for about 2 to 3 minutes.  Using the spatula to cut the egg into small pieces while stirring.  Set aside.

Heat 2 tablespoon oil in a large wok on high.  When the oil is hot, add garlic, ginger, onion, jalapeño, white part of green onion and stir until aromatic, about 4 to 5 minutes.  Lower the heat to medium high or medium if the wok becomes too hot and the content begins to brown too much.

Add cauliflower rice into the wok and continue to stir for about 3 minutes.  Add frozen peas and continue to stir for about 2 minutes.  Add the green part of the green onion and stir for another 2 minutes. 

Pour in the soy sauce mixture and stir until well coated and dry, about another minute or two.  Make sure the cauliflower race is not over cooked and mushy.  It needs to be al dente.

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Moroccan Chickpea Chicken Stew

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Both girls were sick today.  Last night, Angela had an ear ache that was so severe that she was whimpering and writhing in bed.  As Audrey had often done in the past when she was sick, she asked for bowtie pasta in chicken broth with a little lemon juice squeezed into it.  For times like this, I always keep bowtie pasta and chicken stock in the pantry.

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The soup that cures almost anything

They stayed in bed for the whole day and got much better by evening.  Angela had cabin fever after being in bed for so long and we decided to go out for a drive at around 9:30pm.  We crowded into the car in our PJs.  Peter took us to the twisty part of Lombard street, and then to Coit Tower.  Living in this beautiful city, we tend to take for granted what others fly thousands of miles to see.  We parked on top of the telegraph Hill and marveled at the breathtaking night view of the incredible city that we call home and felt very blessed.  We talked about The House on Telegraph Hill, a moody black and white mystery film that we saw not long ago.  The girls couldn’t believe that the director of the film also directed The Sound of Music. The two films looked and felt so completely different.  The one thing they shared was that they were both done masterfully.

It so happened that the Golden State Warriors won the NBA championship tonight — the first in 40 years —  and we were greeted by a lot of half drunken celebrants along the way home.  We left the house with no expectations other than driving around to rid the girls’ cabin fever, but we came back feeling quite exhilarated by the adventure.  

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Moroccan Chickpea Chicken Stew:

1 large chicken breast, cut to bite size

2 medium tomatoes, chopped

1/2 large onion, chopped

1/2 red bell pepper, diced

4 to 5 cloves garlic, crushed

1 can garbanzo bean, drained

8 to 10 kalamata olives, chopped

1 to 2 tablespoon olive oil

1 cup organic chicken stock

1/4 teaspoon ground cumin

1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika

1 tablespoon tomato paste (optional)

1/4 cup chopped flat leave parsley

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Ingredients for the Marinade:

1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika

1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

1/2 teaspoon ground coriander

1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper or taste

1/2 teaspoon turmeric

1/2 teaspoon oregano leaves

1/2 teaspoon cornstarch

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preparation:

Mix all the ingredients for the marinade in a large mixing bowl.  Add chicken pieces into the bowl and mix to coat completely.  (I used my hand to mix it.)  Let stand for 15 to 30 minutes.

Heat the olive oil in a wok or a pan on medium high.  Sauté the onion for 2 to 3 minutes, add tomato, tomato paste and continue to stir for 2 to 3 minutes, add garlic and finally bell pepper.  Sauté until slightly caramelized.  Pour in the chicken stock, paprika, cumin and the chickpea and bring to boil.  Turn the stove to medium low and let simmer for about 5 minutes.  Add more chicken stock if it gets too thick.

The stove back to medium high and add the chicken.  Stir to mix the meat thoroughly with the rest of the stew and close the lid.  Turn off stove and let sit for 5 to 10 minutes.  Make sure the chicken meat is cooked through before taking it off the stove.  If you have the kind of stove that doesn’t retain heat after it is turned off, make sure the meat is just cooked through before turning off the stove. 

Garnish with chopped parsley and serve.

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Honey Spice Glazed Salmon

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There was an article on yesterday’s Wall Street Journal titled Television Habits That Put Family First.  Apparently a new study showed that a family that watches TV together stays together.  Everyone is supposed to put their individual devices away to bond over TV.  There was a time not too long ago when TV watching was a vice for children, especially for tiger mothers.  The question from other Asian mothers such as “What?  You let your children watch TV?” used to make me feel very ashamed.  Well, nowadays  there are so many other unproductive or even harmful activities that TV watching is considered a remedy, at least when the family watches it together.

Tonight, we watched Sixth Sense, a film that I really enjoyed but hadn’t seen again since it was first released.  It was fun to see it again with the girls, especially when Audrey got so scared that she had to cover her eyes with my hand.  The problem is that now she refuses to go anywhere in the house without me.  She is afraid that she will see dead people.  As a matter of fact, she is sitting next to me right now holding one of my hands.  She insists that she must sleep with us tonight.  This is the type of bonding I didn’t expect.

For food, I made honey spice glazed salmon, which Peter and I ate for both lunch and dinner.  It’s delicious hot or chilled.  The smoked paprika gives it a smoky flavor that is perfect for a salad or sandwich if there is leftover.

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Spice Honey Glazed Salmon

Ingredients:

1 1/2 tsp smoked paprika

1 1/2 tsp kosher salt

3/4 tsp dry mustard

1/2 tsp (1 tsp for spicier) ground cayenne pepper

1/2 tsp ground cumin

1/2 tsp ground oregano

3/8 tsp black pepper

1 lemon, separated

2 tbsp or less honey

1 wild sockeye salmon fillet, with skin (1/2 whole fish)

Olive oil cooking spray

Oregano sprigs for garnish

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Preparation:

Turn the oven on high Broil.

Mix the first 7 ingredients in a bowl to make the rub.  Scrape off the scales on the salmon skin in the sink.  Rinse and then dry the fish with a paper towel.  Squeeze some lemon juice on the fillet.  Sprinkle the rub on the fish generously on both sides.  Rub with your fingers.  Let sit in the fridge for about 30 minutes.

Mix 1 tsp lemon juice with 2 tbsp of honey in a small bowl.  Set aside.

Line the baking with with foil.  Spray the foil with oil.  Lay the fish on the pan and spray the fish with oil.  Put 4 slices of lemon on top the the fillet.  Broil it for 4 1/2 minutes.

Open the oven and pull the rack out half way.  Pour the lemon honey mixture on top of the fish and return to broil for another 1 1/2 minutes or until slightly charred.

Transfer fish to serving platter and garnish. 

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Black Bean Salad with Corn Avocado Lime Cilantro Vinaigrette

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A friend is visiting me from Los Angeles.  It’s her birthday, and we decided to celebrate by taking the cruise to Alcatraz Island.  I tend to take this amazing city for granted until a friend or relative shows up and I take them sightseeing.

It was a glorious day.  The sun was shining, and the flowers were blooming, and there was a provocative art installation in some of the old prison buildings.  I found that these dilapidated buildings with broken windows and peeling paint were perfect settings for an art exhibition. 

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The last time I went to Alcatraz there was a bad storm.  We couldn’t have picked a worse day.  My parents came to visit us from Shanghai, and it was their last day in San Francisco.  Against Peter’s advice, I took them and the girls to Alcatraz.  Everyone got dreadfully wet and cold, and we shivered all the way home after only staying on the island for one hour. It was quite miserable. That was almost ten years ago.  When I visited my parents in Shanghai last month, they talked to me so fondly of the time they spent visiting us.  Even the Alcatraz trip became a wonderful adventure. 

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“Blossom”

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Looking at the eroded buildings around me today, I thought of my parents, my children; I thought of time — its relentless and indifferent march.  And yet in my subjective world, once seized, time is also malleable.  It becomes our memory and stretches to fill our imagination.

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Black Bean Salad with Corn Avocado Lime Cilantro Vinaigrette

Ingredients:

2 15-ounce cans black beans, rinsed and drained

1 cup frozen corn kernels, cooked

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 tablespoons minced red onion

2 teaspoons salt

1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

2 tablespoons sugar

4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, best quality such as Colavita

1 teaspoon lime zest (be sure to zest limes before juicing them)

6 tablespoons fresh lime juice

1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro, plus more for garnish

2 Hass avocados, chopped

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Instructions:

Combine all ingredients except for avocados in a large bowl and mix well. Cover and chill for a few hours or overnight. Right before serving, add avocados and mix gently, being careful not to mash avocados. Garnish with a more chopped cilantro if desired. Serve at room temperature.

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 Recipe adapted from : http://www.onceuponachef.com

Nutty Fruity Scones 2.0

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Saturday morning has been a peaceful couple’s time for Peter and me.  The girls are now at an age that they like to stay up late and and sleep until noon or for Angela afternoon on weekends.  Peter loves this scone recipe and I have made it many times for him as energy bars, snacks, and breakfast.  They are easy and quick to make and packed with nuts and fruits, so the combinations are as varied as there are nuts and fruits.

We sit here, sipping tea, reading the paper and talking about whatever that comes to mind.  Mostly we talk about the children.  I savor and cherish these simple moments.  Ever since the children were born, I feel more acutely the transient nature of all things.  Angela will be away in college in a year and half.  There is nothing we can do to stop time from fleeting; we can only stay present and pay attention to the immediacy and fullness of life.

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Nutty Fruity Scone 2.0

Ingredients:

2 cups almond flour

½ teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 cup dried cranberries

1/2 cup walnuts

1/3 cup pistachio nuts

1 large egg

2 tablespoons honey

Preparation:

In a large bowl, combine almond flour, salt and soda.

Stir in dried fruit and nuts.

In a small bowl, combine egg and honey.

Stir wet ingredients into dry.

Use your hands to form dough.

Shape into desired shape.

(I used a little coconut flour to prevent sticking when I handled the dough.)

Bake at 350° on a parchment paper lined baking sheet for 10-12 minutes

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Soy Sauce Sriracha Glazed Cod

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Few things are more important than family dinner.  I missed our time around the dinner table the most when I was away on location and during the time when Angela was at Andover.  Well, I actually missed hugging and kissing them the most, but dinner time was a close second.  I savor every dinner that the four of us can eat together.  I want each and every one of our dinners to be beautiful and delicious.  I don’t want any of it to go to waste.  Cooking to me, especially for my loved ones, is an art and pleasure on par with performing in films.

Today, I revisited the salmon recipe that so many of you loved.  The same marinade worked perfectly for the rock cod.  Compared to the salmon, the cod took less time to cook.  This recipe makes 4 servings and Peter, the fish lover of the family, had three servings all by himself!

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Ingredients for Soy Sriracha Glazed Cod:

1/4 cup reduced-sodium soy sauce (or tamari* for gluten-free)  60mL 低盐鲜酱油

2 tablespoons honey  30 mL蜂蜜

1 tablespoon rice vinegar 15mL米醋

1 tablespoon Sriracha sauce (or to taste) 15mL甜辣椒酱

1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger 15mL 姜末

1 tablespoon minced garlic 15mL 碎蒜

2 tablespoons finely chopped scallions, for garnish 30mL青葱

(Above ingredients are for the marinade.)

1 pound rock cod fillet, cut into 4 (4-ounce) pieces 一磅左右石斑鱼

1 1/2 teaspoons sesame oil 25mL 麻油

1/2 red bell pepper, sliced 红甜椒

2 scallions, cut to one inch slices 青葱

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Preparation:

In a 1-gallon zip-top plastic bag, combine the soy sauce, honey, vinegar, Sriracha, ginger, and garlic. Add the cod, toss to coat evenly, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour, or up to 8 hours, turning the fish once.

Remove the cod from the bag, reserving the marinade.

Heat a large sauté pan over medium-high heat and add the sesame oil. Rotate the pan to coat the bottom evenly and add the cod with the bell pepper and the cut scallion. Cook until one side of the fish is browned, about 1 1/2 minutes. Flip the cod and cook until the other side browns, about another 1 minute. Reduce the heat to low and pour in the reserved marinade and cook until the fish is cooked through, 2 -3 minutes. 

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Baked Coconut Yam Fries

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I caught Audrey listening to Taylor Swift while practicing piano a couple of times.  I also caught her practicing with one hand while snacking with the other a couple of times.  Finally I decided that her playing piano was a futile effort for everyone involved.  Peter and I sat her down a couple of weeks ago and told her that we were letting her off the hook, that it was okay with us if she didn’t play the piano any more.  Unexpectedly, she said she didn’t want to stop.  She insisted on continuing to take lessons.  We told her that it would be her choice to either practice much more conscientiously or to stop entirely.  We told her to think it overnight and let us know her decision the next day.  The next day Audrey solemnly declared that she would practice everyday and with focus, that she wanted to continue piano. 

It’s been about two weeks since her own decision to continue playing the piano and I am hearing a marked improvement in her playing.  Life is full of surprises.

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Baked Coconut Yam Fries

Ingredients:

1 yam (spiralized or sliced)

2 tablespoons extra virgin coconut oil (melted)

1/4 cup unsweetened shaved coconut

1/2 tablespoon xylitol or sugar (optional)

Preparation:

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.  Coat the spiralized or sliced yam with coconut oil and shaved coconut in a baking pan.  Spread a thin layer of yam in the baking dish. You may need two baking pans for this.  The fries will not be crispy if the layer is too thick.

Bake in the oven for 10-15 minutes and then flip over. Bake for another 10-15 minutes or until browned. 

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