Kid-friendly tuna salad sushi

For my son’s lunch the other, I made tuna salad sushi. It was so easy to make, and a joy to watch him devour! LOL

Step 1. Prepare the sushi rice. Cook a cup of uncooked rice according to instructions. (I prefer one cup of uncooked rice to two cups of water.) While the rice is cooking, dissolve a tablespoon of sugar and a dash of salt in a third-cup of rice vinegar. Once the rice is cooked, transfer to a large bowl, and stir the vinegar into the rice until fully combined.

Step 2. Prepare the other ingredients. Combine canned tuna and mayonnaise to taste. Other ingredients in this sushi are shredded imitation crabsticks, basil leaves, chopped cucumbers, and cheese slices, cut into strips. Also, in a ramekin, combine soy sauce and a small amount of prepared wasabi paste, for dipping afterward.

Step 3. Assemble the sushi. On top of a sushi rolling mat (you can see it under the plate in the picture), lay a sheet of nori (Japanese seaweed). Imagine dividing your nori into three horizontal rectangles, and spread a thin layer of rice over the lower two-thirds. At the bottom of the nori, working your way up, layer the ingredients in a horizontal pattern. (I did mine: basil, tuna, cucumber, crabsticks, cheese.)

Step 4. Roll with it! Using the mat, start to roll the nori upwards, moving the mat underneath so it doesn’t fold with the sushi.

Step 5. Nomnom time! Dip in the soy-wasabi and enjoy!

Caprese salad hors d’oeuvres

The other day, I saw this beautiful picture from Jeremiah Bishop, and y’all, I was trigged.

I love me any good tomato dish, and the fresher the dish, the deeper the love.

I’d seen caprese salad work before, but the mozzarella that Jeremiah put atop his salad was ridiculous.

So I said to myself, I wanna make that.

Problem was, I didn’t have any large tomatoes. (As of this blog, though, Caths and I got some truss tomatoes, and I am STOKED.) All I had on the countertop where we store our veggies in winter was a box of cherry tomatoes.

So inspiration struck. I’ma make myself some hors d’oeuvres as a snack. Monica Geller and the French call ’em “amuse bouche,” which roughly translates “amuses the mouth,” into and trust me, my palate was tickled.

So what went into this caprese salad?

Cherry tomatoes, salami, feta, and capers!

That simple! Chopped up the tomatoes, layered the salami, feta, and capers, and topped with with buds of thyme. I rather liked it!

Honey Lemon Ginger Chicken Tenders

My children are currently with my in-laws for the next few weeks because their summer vacation has started. While I will miss them, of course, the good news is that I get to control what I eat and do over the next four weeks. I’ll still see them every weekend, though, and I chat with my wife daily.

Sepanx is real.

Meanwhile, I’m finishing the meat in the refrigerator, then stocking up on luscious fruits and vegetables for the next month. I’m so excited, fam!

Tonight, my friends from the office will be taking me out for a goodbye dinner, so all I had to take care of was breakfast and lunch. For lunch, I used The Recipe Critic‘s brilliant Honey Lemon Ginger Chicken Tenders recipe, and turned it up a notch with a lot more garlic! I prepared this with some steamed buttered cauliflower, broccoli, and carrots. Overall, a great dish!

Ingredients
  • 2 boneless chicken breast
  • 1 teaspoon rice bran oil
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 2 teaspoons freshly grated ginger
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon Bragg’s apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon Coconut Secret coconut aminos (soy sauce alternative)
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
Instructions
  1. In a medium saucepan, sauté olive oil, minced garlic, and ginger for about two minutes.
  2. Add honey, lemon juice, lemon zest, apple cider vinegar, soy sauce, and cornstarch and bring to a boil.
  3. Cut the chicken into bite sized pieces and add to a medium skillet. Cook about 4-5 minutes until no longer pink in center and the outside is starting to brown.
  4. Add the sauce to the chicken and toss to coat.
  5. Serve with buttered vegetables.

Honey Butter Almonds

Two weeks ago, I got hold of these incredible wasabi almonds from Tom’s Farm. They were delicious, absolutely rocked my world.

“So,” I told myself, “you’ve gotta make these bad boys!”

So I went out and bought almonds from Santi’s. The wasabi almonds I had from Tom’s Farm had a nice faint dose of sweetness, which tells me  and was ready to go.

I just had one problem.

Ready-to-eat wasabi powder is impossible to come by without ordering online. The wasabi powder that’s available in the grocery stores is a powder designed to become wasabi paste, ideal for dipping sauces. The wasabi powder I wanted, like Tom’s Farm, should be spicy from the get-go, rather like wasabi French fry seasoning.

So I shifted to another option: honey butter almonds!

I took a cup and a half of roasted almonds and cooked them for about five minutes in a skillet over low to medium heat with three tablespoons of butter, three tablespoons of honey, and three tablespoons of white sugar. I also put in a half teaspoon of cinnamon.

After I had cooked the almonds in the butter mixture, I removed the almonds and laid them on wax paper to cool. After about 30 minutes, I transferred them to a zip-lock bag where I cracked them loose from each other.

The final step was to put some powdered sugar into the bag, then shake it to distribute the sugar. I stored the almonds in a Lock N’ Lock Twist container.

They were delicious and not too sweet, contrary to what we’d think with all the ingredients we’d just cooked them in. LOL

Cheetos-Crusted Chicken Tenders

This morning, I made some meatballs, with grandiose plans to making them a sweet and sour meatball set for tonight. Then, I stumbled into a recipe on Facebook for Doritos chicken, and I was like, THIS. The meatballs will have to wait until tomorrow.

Problem was, when I got to the grocery, there were no large Doritos. Just Cheetos. So I said, okay, Cheetos! And as you can see, thanks to PlainChicken‘s recipe, happiness can still be ours.

Ingredients

2 cups of crushed Cheetos
Half a kilo of raw chicken tenders
1/3 cup honey mustard dressing
1/3 cup mayonnaise
Cooking spray

instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 475°F. Line a baking pan with nonstick aluminum foil; spray nonstick spray on it.
  2. Blend Cheetos in a food processor to fine dust. Transfer to a bowl.
  3. Combine honey mustard dressing and mayonnaise, then dip chicken in.
  4. Dredge in Cheetos crumbs, then arrange on pan.
  5. Spray tenders with cooking spray. Bake, turning once, until golden brown, 15 minutes. Serve with mayonnaise or, heck, more Cheetos!

Enjoy!

How to Cook Perfect Eggs

I made scrambled eggs this morning (with spinach, corn, carrots, and peas), but the pictures weren’t IG-friendly. Why? Because my skillet is horrible.

Here is a great video from Tasty that teaches us all how to cook the perfect egg.

Chicken in Bacon-Mushroom Sauce on Couscous

Caths bought a box of couscous a couple of months ago before she left. Here’s the thing about couscous–which is a pasta and not an actual grain–that bugs me. Neither of my kids like it, and my current fitness plan would prefer I not indulge in pastas.

But we need to be good stewards, and I didn’t want to throw it out, so I looked in the fridge at what I had. Two strips of bacon–leftover from the bacon-chicken kebabs–and a couple of chicken breasts. I knew I had some Campbell’s Mushroom soup, so I said, okay, creamy chicken with bacon. Oh my goodness, yes, it’s perfect with couscous.

Turned out really well, and I didn’t have to share. Muhahaha.

Ingredients

3 chicken breasts, cut into strips or cubes
Two strips of bacon, cut into smaller strips or squares
Half a cup of Campbell’s Cream of Mushroom
1/2 cup of uncooked couscous
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 tablespoon rice bran oil
Salt and pepper to taste

Directions

  1. Cook the couscous according to package directions. (My couscous involves soaking in boiling water for five minutes, then fluffing. So fast!)
  2. Season the chicken with salt and pepper. In a medium-size skillet over medium heat, pan-fry the bacon until lightly browned. Add the chicken and sauté both the chicken and bacon until the chicken is lightly browned. Remove from skillet.
  3. Add and sauté the garlic until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the cream of mushroom soup and stir until hot. Return chicken and bacon, and cook for about five minutes.
  4. Serve hot over warm couscous.

Enjoy!

Buttery Porkchops with Mushrooms

For tonight, I really wanted to cook something else other than chicken–I’m starting to look like a chicken!–so I found this terrific recipe and whipped it up, customizing it a little bit for my own preferences.
I used a butterfly cut, which has the fat at the sides. This allows some nice flavor to sink in to the mushrooms, but can easily be removed by my daughter, who isn’t a big fan of fat on pork.
I know, right?
I don’t wonder if she’s mine, but there are days when I wish I could remind her that there is a world of flavor out there that doesn’t involve chicken! LOL
Ingredients
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 white onion, minced
  • 2 cans of Jolly mushrooms, pieces and stems
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 butterfly-cut porkchops
  • Salt, pepper, and thyme, to taste
  • 4 teaspoons of lemon juice
  • Unsalted butter
  1. Season pork chops on both sides with salt, pepper, and thyme.
  2. Heat one tablespoon of olive oil in a large pan over medium heat.
  3. Add onion and mushrooms and saute for about five minutes. Add garlic and cook until fragrant. Remove the veggies from the pan/
  4. Add the other tablespoon of olive oil. Add the porkchops, and cook for around  four minutes; turn over and cook for an additional two.
  5. Remove the porkchops from the pan temporarily. Return the veggies to the pan, then return the porkchops on top. Add the lemon juice–about a teaspoon–and a small pat of butter to each porkchop.
  6. Cover the pan and cook for 8-10 minutes. Let the pork chops rest for 10 minutes.
  7. Serve the porkchops underneath a bed of mushrooms and onions.

Enjoy!