February 2018: OOOH (Oink Oink Oink..Hibernate)

They are cute and tasty: Dessert Buns at Fortune Terrace Chinese Restaurant, special Lunar New Year Feast

February was filled with family visits and gatherings with friends celebrating the Lunar New Year. There were new discoveries and return visits to old favourites and some long forgotten places, all filled with pleasant little surprises.

OINK OINK OINK:

So Hyang Korean Cuisine: Perfectly grilled mackerel for me and Korean Galbi (beef short ribs) for him; tasty authentic cuisine on Fraser Street at reasonable prices.  

 

Lunar New Year Feasts at Fortune Terrace Chinese Cuisine and Red Star Chinese Restaurant:  Great Food and Fun times:  A huge thank you to my zumba classmates (you know who you are) for arranging these special dinners (OO)

Highlights from Fortune Terrace Chinese Cuisine (Richmond, BC)

Special banquet order: crispy and succulent roast pig, served with chinese pancakes
Scallop Fried Rice
Fried crab claws

And from Red Star 

Sauteed prawns in “mayonnaise” sauce
Birthday baos

And when family is in town..the chow down continues…

I think this is the greatest pork meatball dipping sandwich ever…Au Petit Cafe (4851 Main Street, Vancouver)
Tangram Creamery:  Kombucha and Daifuku mochi with Matcha icecream (2729 Arbutus Street)
Finally a return visit to RAISU  –  Crispy Ebi Fry (2340 West 4th Avenue, Vancouver, BC)
Tetsu Sushi Bar: Do you like Chopped Scallop Temaki?  We Love their unagi rice, udon and sushi (775 Denman Street, Vancouver, BC)
Finally I had the Zen Minami Lunch set – I was “set” for the day – Minami (1118 Mainland Street)

HIBERNATE:

It’s NEVER too cold to have icecream and No I did not finish the jar by myself , I only scraped the bottom of jar and enjoyed what was left  – New favourite “Sweet Cream” from Earnest IceCream: 

On the snowed in days at home…

Perhaps the best time to catch on cooking videos and my reading: Masa’s Top Ten Superfoods

I’ve been following Chef Masa’s Youtube Channel and Facebook for quite a while now..I recently bought his latest cookbook and this will keep me busy for a while :

Also Contemplating and thinking….

Words to Live by: a meaningful posting found on a friend’s FB:

 

August 2016: One Thing Leads To Another

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Mural on Main Street

Want to know what have I been up to in August?  On Wednesday August 31st, 2016  I will be on Ms. Deborah Moore’s radio show on Fairchild Radio 1470 at 10:30am sharp!

If you have any feedback or recommendations, I would love to hear from you!  Drop me a line anytime at goldenapron@gmail.com

“Ai and Om Knives” in Vancouver Chinatown

Having the right and suitable kitchen wares certainly makes doing the job better; and a good knife takes you a long way…

I really don’t know much about knives, my limited knowledge came from tips I’ve picked up at cooking classes, or friends’ recommendations and through reading  I don’t really like to get too technical with almost everything, I just know what “feels” right and what works for me personally.  The last purchase for the “Santoku” was more than 10 years ago (I’m still loving my Wusthof Santoku. Since April I have been on the search for the “right” nakiri  ((菜切り包丁) a great vegetable knife). There were a couple of choices but somehow it didn’t feel quite right; I kept thinking I might as well wait and pick up one when I travel to Japan….Until last Saturday…

My hubby always say I like to “tuck” information away and somehow I can miraculously pull it out when timing is right. I came across the posting about ‘Ai and Om”‘s opening on Instagram (through another instagrammer MaknMing)  around three months ago; and finally it opened on August 21st.

Last weekend I decided to check things out; I was standing outside their door; just one glance at the display window and there it was….I summoned the courage and went in…

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The picture below says it all….and I was happily chopping and dicing away on Sunday..

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Thank you for your help, Yvonne and Douglas (and thanks for answering my message!), I will introduce myself properly next time and will be in touch soon!

Check out their store and ask for recommendations: 129 East Pender Street, Vancouver Chinatown.

I found this article afterwards:

http://scoutmagazine.ca/2016/05/11/diner-chef-douglas-chang-to-open-ai-om-knife-store-on-e-pender-street-in-chinatown/

 

FoodVideo: Chinese cooking channel on YouTube, WeChat and Weibo:

This channel is so much fun to watch: the videos are short and stylish; cooking demonstrations and instructions are simple to understand; there was this particular video which showcases two simple family style dishes from Yunnan cuisine (something I am not familiar with also); it looked so delicious and simple to make, the names are interesting also, roughly translated to “Red Three Chop” and “Black Three Chop” .

I certainly put “Nakiri” into good use over the weekend. As I am unable to find some of the ingredients (the “black coloured” pickled Brassica juncea – mustard green), I sourced out local ingredients and came up with my versions; I wanted to find out what is the English name of the pickled vegetable used and I contacted the home cook on weibo; I was thrilled to hear from her!

“Triple Red Dice” and “Triple Green Dice” : Great with rice or noodle, suitable for entire family and it’s easy to make.  Initially I “googled” the Chinese ingredient and the translation I got was ‘Kohlrabi”, big head vegetable (haha).  Have you ever tried cooking with kohlrabi?  The first time I had it was at Pidgin Restaurant (more than 4 years ago I still remember the Dan Dan Kohlrabi), and more recently I’ve used the raw kohlrabi for the Dan Dan Noodles (Thanks Nourish Vancouver); it’s the first time I try kohlrabi in its cooked form and it has a very nice sweet flavour.

Triple Green Dice: minced garlic and ginger, minced pork, kohlrabi, green pepper, Serrano chili pepper, shiitake mushroom, green onion, Tamari soy used as seasoning, and finish with Vancouver Island Fleur del Sel. (triple green: green pepper, kohlrabi, Serrano chili pepper)

Triple Red Dice: minced garlic and ginger, minced turkey (non-medicated and free range), heirloom tomatoes (they are in season!), red pepper, Thai chilli pepper, green pepper,  Tamari soy used as seasoning, a drizzle of maple syrup and finished with Vancouver Island and Co. Fleur del Sel. (triple red: tomatoes, red pepper and Thai chili pepper).

This is what I truly believe in: Cook with love, always think of who you are cooking for, remember to season and adjust to personal tastes and dietary concerns!

Vancouver Island Salt Co : I met them at the Dinner Party YVR Event and I’ve been using their product ever since..(my personal favourite: smoked sea salt).

http://www.visaltco.com

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My take on Yunnan Chinese food using local ingredients: my friends call it Deb’s brand of fusion (I dislike this word but what can I call them?) – Triple Red Dice and Triple Green Dice

Fun on Fraser Take Two: Change is Constant

As our beloved city of Vancouver kept growing,  the little hubs in our neighbourhood kept changing; old favourites might be gone, perhaps finding new love…

Opa!  Nammos on Fraser:

I must confess I am not the biggest fan of Greek food but somehow having dined at Nammos twice (Brunch and dinner),  I love their fresh and no fuss approach: Family style share plates with great vegetarian options, fresh and light tasting (try their crispy calamari with the beet dip), good size portion and reasonable pricing; the restaurant is spacious and airy, patio seating available…and it’s right next to Earnest Ice cream (OO).

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Share plate at brunch: Calamari with beet dip; Nammos Salata: spinach, arugula and manouri with honey vinaigrette, a side order of swiss chard, grilled vegetarian sandwich
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Tender grilled octopus: one of the shared plates we had for dinner

Penang Bistro on Fraser (Used to be Bodhi Choi Heung)

Celebrated a friend’s dinner last week at Penang Bistro (Back to Fraser Hood!);  Three things which stand out: the fluffy roti and the pork chop (sweet and sour) with fried kabocha squash; and lastly I must commend our server for his food knowledge and superb service, he understands the menu and the components for each dish very well.

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Sweet and Sour Fried Pork Chop with Fried Kabocha
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Fluffy Roti; my friends had the beef and chicken satay skewers

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

April 22nd, 2015 Radio Show

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Hi everyone!

Enjoying the spring weather?  I’ve been busy attending classes and redesigning my blog!  For the time being, you can find my updates only on Twitter (@GoldenApron) or Instagram (Mygoldenapron).   Stay tuned for changes coming soon!

I will be on Ms. Deborah Moore’s radio show on AM 1470 Fairchild Radio on April 22nd, 2015 at 10:30am sharp!

Below is the outline and the content is subject to change according to Ms. Moore and flow of program; I look forward to chatting with her about food and everything else (OO)

Fun on Fraser:

Between East 23rd Avenue and East King Edward Avenue:  Vancouver’s beloved Earnest Ice cream is already on this block; check out the Chinese vegetarian restaurant and french bakery!

Bodhi Choi Heung Vegetarian Restaurant: 3932 Fraser Street, Vancouver, BC (Closed on Tuesdays).

We don’t eat Chinese vegetarian food very often; certainly enjoyed their crispy fried taro roll, spring rolls and milk custard (picture not shown; nice hint of coconut); their sautéed pea sprouts were simple yet cooked to perfection; the magic lies within the vegetarian broth which they prepared, the dishes we’ve tried are flavourful and not overly seasoned.  Friendly atmosphere and great price range.

Delicious Deep fried Yuba wrapped Taro rolls and Spring Rolls - Chinese Vegetarian
Delicious Deep fried tofuwrapped Taro rolls and Spring Rolls – Chinese Vegetarian
Batard Boulangerie Cafe Moderne: 3958 Fraser Street, Vancouver, BC 

French country-style bakery which has a little of everything: fabulous seasonal baked goods (their Raisin Walnut bread was to die for),  you can stop by to have a light lunch or coffee and dessert: we thoroughly enjoyed their black forest cake in a jar with a nice cup of tea!  They also sell their baked goods at the Vancouver Farmers Market, check out their website for menu and information:

http://www.batardbakery.com/

Black Forest Cake in Mason Jar at Batard
Black Forest Cake in Mason Jar at Batard
Thai on Commercial Drive: 

Kin Kao – 903 Commercial Drive, Vancouver, BC (closed on Mondays), Eat in and Take out Available

I discovered this fine little gem on Instagram and went for a light brunch; we enjoyed the vegetarian congee (authentic Thai/Chinese flavour) and Pad Thai (remember to ask for spicy).  No reservations so get there early; and we will try their dinner menu next time!

I Love Congee!
Tofu and Vegetable Congee at Kin Kao’s Sunday brunch
Back to the West side: Au Comptoir,  2278 West 4th Avenue, Vancouver, BC

They have been following me on Twitter and I finally made it to the restaurant; an almost-perfect dinner from start to finish; check out their new spring menu, and remember no reservations (this seems to be the norm here in Vancouver for many small establishments).

http://aucomptoir.ca/IMG_5672

New in social media application: Zomato, recently launched in North America (bought out Urbanspoon): 

Now testing their new app!  It’s a restaurant app with instagram capabilities. My handle and profile from Urbanspoon has been transferred over, so follow me!

http://http://www.urbanspoon.com/c/14/Vancouver-restaurants.html.urbanspoon.com/c/14/Vancouver-restaurants.html

https://www.zomato.com/vancouver/restaurants

Upcoming events:

http://eat-vancouver.com/

I’ve already purchased tickets to two special events; can’t wait to update everyone next month!

TKC Japanese Gourmet kitchen by Guu: April 26th Dashi broth making class taught in English, you can find them on Facebook.