Wednesday, December 30, 2015

My Midea Pressure Cooker

This is a review based on my recent purchase of Midea Pressure Cooker. A similar review is also posted on (4-star review).
My golden pot. No, it's not made of gold.
Before I bought this pressure cooker, I had a quick search online. I didn't see any negative review about it, although there isn't many. The price was so good and I took the chance. I didn't regret buying it because I've been using it twice a day during my first week of "trial".

I have tried every setting on this pressure cooker. My favorite is the Soup setting. The pressure builds up and the time starts to ticking. There is an internal weight measuring device to know how long it will need to cook. This 10-cup capacity for rice cooking is huge. So, I don't plan to replace my current 4-cup rice cooker. The rice came out really airy but needs to be consumed within a day. The rice quality degrades after being refrigerated after 2 days.

Below is my breakdown on each setting:

  • Brown Rice - 18 minutes to start with 3 cups of rice
  • Steam - default at 30 minutes, can be set at 1 to 60 minutes
  • Soup - 20 to 45 minutes
  • Slow Cook - 8 hours and can't adjust. Not sure if it's defective
  • Beans - 30 to 60 minutes

After my first week of trial, I began to find Midea products online. It's a popular brand for kitchen appliances in Hong Kong. I also read the blog about their pressure cookers as well as learned some history and tricks in cooking certain type of food.

My only pet peeve was the instructional manual being highly inefficient and translated badly. There isn't any real recipe on there, only how to get started. I was overwhelmed with warning phrases. Yes. It's really dangerous if you don't obey. But it's far safer than the stove top pressure cooker. I'd rather unplug the cooker to release the pressure than using the lever.

Here are some of my recipes -

Monday, October 12, 2015

I made Dim Sum

Not really. Whenever I have the crave for some dim sum, I steam these ready-to-cook dim sum pieces. They came out just like in the restaurants, without the hassle of driving somewhere to wait in line. Best of all, you cook what you want to eat.

The important thing is buying the correct items. Kimbo Dimsum Hap and Wei-Chuan Pork Mini Buns can be found at Viet Hoa International Market. They can be kept in the freezer for a few months.
Steam these ready-to-cook dimsum pieces bought at Viet Hoa International Market.
Easy steps:

  • Traditional flavor is to cook them in bamboo baskets. Alternative is using stainless steel steam pot.
  • Wet the baskets and follow instruction on package for water amount.
  • Line the baskets with vegetable leaves to prevent sticking and food fall into water. I used bok choy. Alternatives are Napa cabbage, green leave lettuce, kale or waxed paper.
  • Steam over high heat for 10 minutes, or directed by the manufacturers. Don't over cook the sticky rice wrapped dim sum. They will not retain the shape when mushy.
  • When done, remove baskets from the pot and place on plates. 
  • Ready to enjoy.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Low GI Cookies

This is a recipe for healthy and delicious oatmeal raisin cookies with lots of fibers and very low sugar. Great for people watching their A1C and stay on the low Glycemic Index (GI).
The energy you get will be burned from chewing them. 

7 tbsp soften butter
1 tbsp molasses
5/8 cup Splenda
1 egg
1/2 tsp Vanilla
3/4 cup all purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 1/2 cup Quaker oats
1/4 cup raisins
1/4 cup dried fruits (chopped dates, apricots, etc)

  1. Cream butter & Splenda in mixing bowl
  2. Mix wet ingredients (molasses, egg, vanilla) into bowl
  3. Mix dry ingredients (flour, baking soda, cinnamon) into bowl
  4. Turn in oats, raisins & dried fruits into bowl
  5. Form dough in 1 tbsp measuring spoon
  6. Bake at 375° 10-12 min or until golden brown
  7. Cool 5 minutes on cookie sheet, remove to cooling plate, after cooling, place in plastic container to store.

Yields 28 cookies @ 3 gram carbs & 6 gram fiber per cookie
Originally posted on Facebook 6/19/10

Monday, July 6, 2015

Fried Honeycomb Tofu

If you don't like the tofu texture, try this easy recipe. Fried frozen tofu with garlic, cilantro and sweet'n'hot dipping sauce makes your dinner appetizer so grand. The Chinese said: 美味無窮!
Fried Honeycombed Tofu adds excitement to your dinner table.

1 pack hard tofu
3 cups oil for frying

Dipping Sauce:
3 cloves garlic, chopped
6 stems cilantro, chopped
1 cup low sodium soy sauce
Desirable amount of Sriracha


  1. Cut tofu into pieces of half inch thick.
  2. Lay the slices on a clean plate and put them in the freezer overnight.
  3. Next day, remove them from the freezer and soak in water.
  4. Squeeze out excess water and lay on a layer of paper towel to let dry.
  5. Heat oil on medium heat until ready for frying* (about 5 minutes). 
  6. Carefully drop the slices into oil. Flip once to have even coverage.
  7. Remove from heat when tofu pieces turned light brown.
  8. Lay fried tofu on dry paper towel until surface is no longer greasy.
  9. Mix the dipping sauce ingredients for dipping or serve with your favorite dipping sauce.

*Ready for Frying: Drop a small piece of tofu. If it dips to the bottom then come right up, it is ready to fry.

Originally posted on Instagram June 15, 2013

Friday, June 26, 2015

Low-Sodium Coleslaw

This is my instant slaw recipe - skipping the marinate.

Got to love it when it's fast. Faster than driving to KFC.

6 cup shredded cabbage
1 tbsp shredded carrot
1 cup mayo
2 tbsp vinegar (prefer apple cider vinegar)
2 tbsp oil
1 tbsp Splenda
1/2 tsp celery salt
Dash of ground pepper

  1. Sprinkle celery salt on vegetables and rub until soft.
  2. Stand for 10 min
  3. Squeeze out excess liquid. (If too salty, rinse with drinking water and squeeze out the liquid.)
  4. Mix in other ingredients.
  5. Toss well.
  6. Refrigerate for an hour or marinate overnight.

Friday, June 19, 2015

Salmon Au Miso

This was a self-taught recipe after eating at popular restaurant in Hawaii. Miso was on everything. But when it was roasted, the sweetness brings out from the naturally fermented soy beans. I shared this recipe with my mom. That was why there is a Chinese version.

2 lb. Fresh Salmon
 2/1 cup Miso, any color or type
 1/4 cup Sake rice wine
 Soy Sauce, Sugar, Salt and pepper to taste

Baked miso has aroma that will blend well with salmon
  1. Cut salmon into portion sizes 
  2. Salt fish with salt, lightly, on both sides. 
  3. Let sit for 30 minutes to draw out excess water. 
  4. Combine all ingredients and marinate fish overnight. 
  5. Bake fish on a sheet pan at 350 degrees for 10-15 minutes, until edges begin to brown. 

食譜: 味增鮭魚 - Chinese Version

2 lb. 新鮮鮭魚
1/4 杯日本米酒或米醋

1- 把魚切成食用大小。抹一些鹽﹐過半小時後﹐去水。
2- 把魚加入所有的調味料﹐放入塑膠袋密封。
3- 醃泡一夜。第二天晚上﹐連同滷汁一起去烤箱烤。
4- 設定350度﹐烤10-15分鐘。烤到邊緣開始成褐色。

Originally posted on Not-so-Secret Potluck Recipes

Monday, June 15, 2015

Orange Dream Cake

Got this recipe from a coworker who love to bake this cake. She got the recipe from a cookbook. So, here is my version with photos.

1 Box White Cake Mix and everything you need as required
1 Box Orange Flavored Jello
1 Cup Water, boiling
1/2 cup water, cold
From bottom left: 
Bake the cake as directed on the box.
Spread the frosting on the prepared cake

Orange Frosting: 
1/2 bag of orange flavored Kool-aid
2 tsp water
1 tsp Vanilla
1 tub Cool Whip


  1. Bake the cake in 1/4 sheet pan as directed on the box. 
  2. Leave the cake in the pan. 
  3. Cool on the rack. 
  4. Pour boiling water into Jello powder, stir until dissolved. Then, add cold water to cool. 
  5. Poke holes with thick end of chopstick on the cake. 
  6. Spoon Jello liquid over the cake and into the holes. 
  7. When cooled completely, ice with orange frosting. 

Courtesy of a cooking pal in Hawaii, originally posted on Sat Nov 12, 2005 2:27 pm 

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Sugar-Free Vietnamese Pickles

If you like the taste of daikon pickle at a Vietnamese restaurant, you could try this recipe without worrying about raising your blood sugar.

1 cup carrot strips
1 cup daikon strips
1 tbsp salt
2 tbsp Splenda
1 cup vinegar
1 tbsp fish sauce
1 cup water
Refreshing flavor to enjoy at anytime
  1. Rub the salt on carrot and daikon and let stand for 30 minutes. 
  2. Rinse off the salt with drinking water. 
  3. Drain completely. 
  4. Pour the rest into container 
  5. Toss frequently 
  6. Ready to serve in 2 hours; better tasting pickles takes overnight

Originally posted on pbase.

Poorman's Cold Noodles

Cheapest dish that is known to Chinese kitchen.

2 cups chow mien noodles
2 tbsp of sesame oil
1 tbsp diced green onions
1 tsp chopped garlic
1 tbsp light soy sauce or Aloha Shoyu

Great for hot summer days


  1. Boil 4 cups of water, add noodles. 
  2. Drain them then rinse the noodle under cold water.
  3. Heat a pan with sesame oil. 
  4. Remove from heat. 
  5. Stir in diced green onions, chopped garlic, soy sauce. 
  6. Pour over cold noodles and stir evenly.

Monday, June 8, 2015

Cauliflower in Sundrenched Days

This is one simplest recipe and great for potluck. It doesn't cost much and everyone loves finger food and delicious vegetables with lots flavors and endless conversation.  Although Kraft stopped producing Sun Dried Tomato Dressing, you can use any oil-based salad dressings. The blanching technique is to keep cauliflower crunchy and retain the vitamins without over-boiling it.
Most of salad dressings can be used as marinate

1 head Fresh Cauliflower
8 oz Oil-based Dressing (half bottle)
3 qt boiling water 
4 qt iced cold water

  1. Cut cauliflower into bite sizes.
  2. Rinse well.
  3. Bring a pot of water to boil, enough water to cover the entire head of cauliflower.
  4. Dunk the vegetable and cover.
  5. Remove from heat and soak for 10 minutes.
  6. Drain and remove the vegetable immediately. 
  7. Dunk them into the iced cold water.
  8. Once the vegetable is cooled to room temperature, remove from cold water and drain well.
  9. Pour salad dressing into the bowl. Toss cauliflower pieces until they are evenly coated. 
  10. Ready to serve.

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Fiscal Cliff Deadline Wings

This was the one-of-a-kind hot wing dish - not fried, but baked wings. On 12/31/12, there was nothing to watch on TV, because every news channel was showing the sudden change in personal income tax laws in 2013.

I thought, "gee, if the time really gets bad, let's have some fun with whatever I could find in my kitchen."

My "Fiscal Cliff Deadline Wings" recipe was born.

8 Chicken Wings, Parted
1/4 tsp Liquid Smoke
1/2 tbsp Paprika
1/2 tsp Crushed Hot Peppers
1/4 tsp Sea Salt
1 Orange, crushed

BBQ Sauce: (if you don't have 1 cup of BBQ Sauce)
1/2 cup Brown Sugar
1/2 cup Ketchup
2 tbsp Light Soy Sauce
They go well with toasted garlic bread. You can make it an appetizer or a late night snack.

  1. Marinate the wings with liquid smoke, paprika, hot peppers and salt in the refrigerator for 2 hours.
  2. In a pan, heat the BBQ sauce ingredients and mix in crushed orange and its juice over medium heat until bubbling. Turn to simmer.
  3. Heat oven to 400.
  4. Lay chicken parts on a greased cooking pan. Bake for 40 min. Flip them and bake for another 10 min.
  5. Remove the wings immediately and dunk them into the hot sauce mixture.
  6. Toss to coat and ready to serve.

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Miso Chicken Breast

1 de-boned chicken breast
1/2 cup Zinfandel
3 tbsp miso paste
1 tbsp dark soy sauce
5 sliced jalapeno
Miso has extra aroma after cooking

Marinate all ingredients overnight
Heat oven to 400 degrees.
Bake 20 minutes uncovered.

Monday, June 1, 2015

Turkey Taco

Turkey taco for dinner - it's so easy to make, but a little time consuming in preparing everything initially.

  1. Follow the directions on this McCormick Chicken Taco seasoning. 
  2. Add extra cumin and oregano. 
  3. Shred lettuce, cut some tomatoes and cilantro.
  4. Heat corn tortillas and ready to the assembly line. 
  5. Top them off with some Taco Bell Fire Sauce to taste like in restaurant. 

Originally from Instagram
Ground turkey @ $2.79/lb. #vegetabletarian #homemade #healthy

Sunday, May 31, 2015

Stir Fry Chicken Pieces

One half chicken breast
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp corn starch
2 tbsp low-sodium soy sauce
2 cups of cabbage
2 tsp chili sauce
1/2 cup of chicken broth
dash of salt
dash of pepper
I used Huy Fong Chili Garlic Sauce (from the maker of Sriracha) 

  1. Cut chicken into bite size.
  2. Mix corn starch and soy sauce into chicken piece in a lunch box.
  3. Cover and marinate overnight.
  4. Cut cabbage into half inch strips.
  5. Heat oil in a wok on high heat for a minute. Don't let it scorch.
  6. Stir in cabbage. 
  7. Coat them with heated oil and stir, stir, stir until slightly transparent.
  8. Add chicken broth, salt and pepper.
  9. Lower heat to medium high and cook until slightly soft. Don't overcook.
  10. Remove from heat and set aside.
  11. Use remaining oil and add 1 tbsp oil, if needed.
  12. Stir in chicken pieces. 
  13. Coat them with heated oil and stir fry until surface changed to white. About 3 minutes.
  14. Mix cooked cabbage, hot sauce into the wok. 
  15. Stir fry on high heat for about 2 minutes. Sample the chicken pieces, make sure no longer pink inside.
  16. Remove from heat. Ready to serve with steam rice.

Technique of stir frying: Coat the ingredients with heated oil and keep stirring until cooked. This will allow meat to be tender and evenly cooked.
I prefer olive oil is because of flavor and healthy benefits. You can use vegetable oil.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

My First Jambalaya

2 drumsticks
3 cups of water
4 oz of fully-cooked Smoked Sausage, about quarter of a ring
8 medium size (26-30) shelled shrimps
A box of Zatarain's Jambalaya Mix
1 tbsp oil
  1. Boil chicken legs in water and cook them at medium heat for about half hour or until you see the meat falling off the bones. 
  2. Pull the meat apart from the bones. 
  3. Set the liquid aside. I'd rather use the juice from boiling chicken to replace water as required.
  4. Slice the sausage into thin as possible pieces. 
  5. Half the shrimps, make sure you remove the yucky parts.
  6. Followed the directions on the box of Zatarain's Jambalaya Mix. 
  7. Viola! Jambalaya is served in less than 60 minutes.
I normally use lower sodium version, because I want to taste the meats.
Next up, stir fried chicken pieces using one-half of the chicken breast.

Easy meals in 60 minutes or less.

Monday, May 25, 2015

Chicken 6 ways

How can you cook a chicken into 6+ different dishes?

I normally buy a whole chicken, which is cheaper than chicken parts. I cut it into pieces: breast, thighs, legs, wings, back and whatever is in the stomach cavity.

Chicken 6 Ways plus more
Photo above shows:

  1. I de-boned the thighs to go on the George Foreman's Grill
  2. I parted wing pieces for hot wings.
  3. I cut out breast meat from its cage, half for stir fry and half for roast.
  4. I boiled the drumsticks for Jambalaya.
  5. The rest of bones are in a big pot for chicken broth to season beans, greens etc.
  6. Oh. I smashed the cooked chicken liver for pâté or a treat for my cat.

Up next, my first jambalaya. Mmm... yummy.