Shrimp and noodles

Here is a fun recipe for the family that is easy to make and fun to eat.  No need for stopping at your favorite noodle restaurant, this one is great tasting and made at home.

I adapted this recipe from one that I found in Cooking Light magazine last summer. I used 8 ounces of Lo Mein noodles and cooked according to the package directions and drained.

Next, I combined 1 1/2 cups chicken stock, 2 tablespoon soy sauce, 1 teaspoon cornstarch, 1 teaspoon sesame oil, 1/2 teaspoon sugar, and black pepper to taste in a small bowl.

Then, in a large electric skillet, I drizzled 1 tablespoon stir fry oil and added  1 1/4 cups broccoli tops, 3/4 cup sliced carrots, and 3/4 cup red pepper.  Saute these until soft and then add 1/4 cup chicken stock mixture.  Heat for another 2-3 minutes and then add one bag cleaned large shrimp, along with 1 tablespoon minced garlic and 1 teaspoon minced ginger.  Continue to cook until the shrimp are cooked and pink.  Then add the Lo Mein noodles and the rest of the chicken stock mixture.

Cook until all the ingredients are well mixed and warmed through.  Just prior to serving, add 1 tablespoon rice vinegar.  Top with Sesame seeds if desired for serving.

Slow cooker sesame chicken

The weather is cold and comfort meals are still on the menu at our house.  I love using a slow cooker for an easy delicious meal, especially when I have a busy day of activities planned.  This Asian recipe is very easy and quite tasty to make and enjoy. It will serve four people or just two with a nice amount of leftovers for another day.

Begin by slicing 1-2 whole chicken breasts into bite-sized pieces.  Prepare a sauce of 1/2 cup Agave, 1/4 cup soy sauce, 2 tablespoons dried onion, 2 tablespoons ketchup, 1 tablespoon oil and 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder.  Pour this sauce over the chicken and cook on low for 2 1/2 hours.  I usually stir the chicken after the first 1 1/2 hours just to mix well with the sauce.

Next, add 3/4 bag of small carrots which are sliced in half, and 2 small white chopped onions.  Continue to cook on low for another hour.  Then add one can of pineapple chunks with juice, about 3/4 cup snow pea pods and turn the slow cooker up to High.

Mix 2 teaspoons cornstarch in 3 tablespoons water and add to the cooker.  Cook for another hour and then serve with brown rice and garnish with sesame seeds.

Just like takeout chicken

Here is another really easy and delicious recipe for chicken that is so similar to takeout from your favorite Asian restaurant.  I was inspired by a recipe I found last year in Good Housekeeping magazine. I gave it a try, and the flavors were excellent and very tasty.

I used chicken drumsticks, but chicken thighs, chicken breasts or other chicken pieces could also be used in this recipe.  Here is how I prepared the recipe.  Using one package of chicken drumsticks, place in a ceramic baking dish, sprayed with Pam, and cover the chicken with 1/2 to 3/4 cup of hoisin sauce.   Place in a preheated oven at 375 degrees for 40 minutes.  Turn and rotate the chicken and bake for another 15 minutes until done.

Traditionally served with Chinese pea pods, I boiled mine for 10 minutes on low near the end of the chicken cooking cycle.  I drained them and seasoned with 1 teaspoon sesame oil, cilantro, red and ground pepper.  When the chicken was complete, I sprinkled sesame seeds on top for serving.  This dish could be served on a round platter, with the green pea pods in the center of the dish with the wings, drumsticks or other chicken pieces around the sides.

   

 

Won-Ton soup

One of our favorite Winter meals is soup.  Soup and salad or soup and crusty bread or even soup and sandwich come together in a matter of minutes and can be super delicious on a cold night.  This is one of my all-time favorite soups.  No need to get take-out as this soup recipe is better than take-out.

Assemble these ingredients and combine in a large stock pot on the stove:  8 cups of chicken broth, sliced fresh mushrooms, sliced water chestnuts, about 6 green onions including the green stems, cooked shrimp, pork or chicken slices (could be leftover from another meal), fresh romaine lettuce pieces, and won-ton noodles.  I slice my won-ton noodles into thin strips and use them in the soup.  I do not take the time to make filled won-tons.  Only slice as many noodles from the package as you will need for the soup, probably not even 1/3 of the package. The last time I used 10 noodles cut into thirds.

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Boil the stock and add the above ingredients except the greens. Stir in the noodles and cook to heat. Add the greens just before serving the soup.  If this soup will be served for a planned Asian themed party, serve with egg rolls or any classic Asian dish. I have many posts on this blog for Asian entrees, egg rolls and spring rolls. Use the search tool and input Asian or shrimp to find quite a few recipes very quickly. Or scan the recipe categories to search more efficiently for exact names of dishes.

This soup can also be served on a buffet.  Use an attractive soup tureen and it will be the star of the meal.

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Shrimp and Pineapple fried rice

Are you looking for an easy easy easy fried rice recipe?  I have posted several on my blog in the past, but this one has a different flavor profile.  I thought I would try shrimp and pineapple this time in a recipe, and the results were outstanding.  Make sure to use cold white rice.  I usually prepare 2 cups of quick cook rice the morning that I plan to make this Asian treat, or make extra rice the night before and keep it cold.  The cold rice insures that your dish with not be soggy.

Here is how I made this dish:  In a wok, I heated 1 tablespoon oil and added 3 eggs to cook– stirring frequently and breaking them up until done.  Remove them from the wok and set aside. Add another 2 tablespoons oil and add 1/2 bag of cleaned shrimp (size 26-30) and cook about 3-4 minutes until done and remove from the wok.  Next, add about 3/4 cup chopped carrots and 4 cleaned and chopped green onions (both white and green stems).  Stir fry while adding these ingredients:  3 tablespoons soy sauce, 1/2 teaspoon minced ginger, and one cup drained pineapple tidbits.

Next add 1/2 cup frozen green peas and continue to cook for about 3-4 minutes.  Add 1-1/2 cups cooked rice and incorporate. Then finally, add the cooked eggs and shrimp to stir fry and finish the dish.  Make sure all ingredients are hot before serving.  This may take another 4-5 minutes.  One of my husband’s favorites.

 

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Cashew lettuce wraps

Lettuce wraps are often a staple menu item,  expanding to a variety of family restaurants recently.  Beginning in Asian only restaurants, the wraps have moved mainstream with great popularity.  Understandably, since most lettuce wrap recipes are very tasty and can be made with only vegetables or with added chicken, beef or fish proteins.

This inspired recipe came from Cooking Light magazine, January-February 2014. I have used this recipe and especially enjoyed making with grilled chicken. Of course, this recipe can be adapted to omit that ingredient if desired. I do recommend purchasing Bibb or Boston lettuce for this one, as the delicious taste of that lettuce only adds to the flavor of the wraps.  Serve these on an appetizer buffet, for a main dish, or with rice on the side.

For this recipe, gather these ingredients:  

2 tablespoons light soy sauce, 1 tablespoon red wine, 1 tablespoon hoisin sauce, 1 teaspoon rice vinegar, 1 tablespoon sesame oil, 1 tablespoon minced garlic, 1 tablespoon minced ginger, 1/2 bag shredded coleslaw mix, 1-2 grilled chicken breasts, 1/2 cup sliced green onion, Boston lettuce leaves, and cashews.

In a small bowl, mix soy sauce, red wine, hoisin sauce, and rice vinegar. In a wok, use sesame oil to grill the sliced chicken.  Adapt the amount to the number of wraps desired. Next, add garlic and ginger, cooking about one minute.  Add the coleslaw mix and cook about one more minute.  Add the sauce and mix everything together.  Add onions as the final step.  Cook all the ingredients together to finish about one minute.  Serve with cashews for presentation.  If desired, additional chopped green onions can be added to the top for presentation.

yummy lo mein noodles

During another blog surfing session, I found inspiration for home-made lo mein noodles.  I happen to love my new recipe, as I have changed up the one I found to tweak it to perfection.  It is very satisfying to be able to re-create some of my favorite foods at home.  No more wondering what these restaurants have added to the recipe, and the savings in money and calories is unreal.  I guess this is why these restaurants can make a living.  The mark up on very inexpensive ingredients is amazing.

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Here is how I make my own yummy lo mein noodles:

First of all, I use about 4 ounces or 1/2 package of spaghetti noodles. Boil according to the package directions.  Next, mix these ingredients in a small bowl:  2 1/2 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce, 2 teaspoons sugar, 1 1/2 teaspoons sesame oil, and 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger.

In a large open skillet, add 2 tablespoons olive oil and warm.  Add a small amount of minced garlic to taste, one box of white mushrooms, thinly sliced and chopped, 3/4 chopped red pepper, and about 15 chopped petite carrots.  Cook about 5 minutes, stirring until softened.  Then, stir in about 10-15 snow peas or Chinese pea pods, and 1 cup of fresh leafy arugula.  Cook another 4 minutes.

To finish the dish, add the drained noodles and prepared sauce.  Toss and serve with home-made egg rolls.  This is a delicious dish for those who love Asian meals.  My egg roll recipe can be found here:  

https://angelfoodgarden.wordpress.com/2012/10/21/easy-egg-rolls-and-cranberry-dipping-sauce/

Egg rolls can be adapted to what is on hand.  I have used shredded cooked chicken or shrimp, chopped carrots, chopped green onions, bean sprouts, and even chopped water chestnuts for filling.

Noodle inspiration from http://www.damndelicious.net .

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