No flour, no meat, no root veggies… What?

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I’m about to enjoy the last bit of my gluten free brownie! Why am I eating gluten free stuff all of a sudden?

I hurt my back in October and went to see an oriental medicine doctor. After some sessions of acupuncture, he figured out my body type – “Metal Yang”! According to him, there are 8 types of body, each of which has certain foods that are recommended. I was given this RIDICULOUS list of what to eat and what not to eat.

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No meat, no root vegetables, no wheat flour, no red pepper flakes, no apples, no pears, no coffee… Basically, there are a lot more things that I am not supposed to eat than what I can eat. As a food/meat lover, this list seemed almost impossible to follow but I thought I would give it a try and, hey, I made it for 4 weeks! Cold turkey!

It’s been very hard for me, though. I still cooked for the fam: for example, delicious bibimbap and bulgogi.

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We did go out to eat a lot too.

20131117-173107.jpg I was tempted quite a few times, but I managed to follow the rules for the last 4 weeks. The duck at Peking Gormet Inn in Falls Church was the toughest one to resist but I did it!

I’m not allergic to anything as far as I know so I never had to be one of those people who are like “I’ll have the salad but no nuts or bacon please. Can I have this light dressing instead of that dressing? Also, none of this please but can I have some of that on the side?” I’d never even been on the gluten free aisle until recently either. And I gotta say that I’ve learned some new things from this experience. There are other good sources of protein such as beans, tofu and certain seafood. Some gluten free snacks are surprisingly delicious. 😉 Some special food needs can be met these days in a quite satisfying way.

However, I’m ending this special diet as of today! The stress and the sense of hunger I can’t stand anymore! 🙂 In general, I eat pretty healthy. There might be certain things that are “bad” for my body type but if I stress so much over not being able to eat what I really want to eat, it’s probably bad for me anyway. I’m so excited to go back to being a meat lover 🙂 I’m ready for some juicy burgers and fries! YOLO!

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Bulgogi (beef) – Scrumptious but simple enough to make!

The picture is from the website of a famous Korean franchise restaurant called “Bulgogi Brothers.” They haven’t opened one in the States yet unfortunately. 😦 What you see up there is Bulgogi Bibimbap. “Bul” literally means fire, “gogi” meat, “bibim” mix and “bap “rice. It’s self explanatory except for the ‘fire’ part. That came from how it’s cooked and for more information, click the link above. 🙂 Because I am too excited to reveal the recipe that’s so easy! There are more than a few different kinds of Bulgogi’s but this one is the most common and easiest one that you can make. The key is to get all the right ingredients. After that, it’s a piece of cake!

*** Recipe (2 servings) ***

<Meat>

You need thin slices of (usually) sirloin. I do have hard time finding this cut of beef at regular supermarkets. If that’s the case, go to H-Mart or an Asian grocery store nearby. They should have it and it doesn’t matter if it’s frozen. Get 1lb of the meat.

<Marinade – unit:tablespoon> FYI, everyone has a different recipe and this is my mom’s.

soy sauce (4-5), water (2), Coke or Pepsi (3), minced garlic (0.5-1), sugar or honey (1), sesame oil (0.5-1)

<Secret Ingredient>

Meat can be really chewy and here’s the ultimate meat tenderizer! Pureed KIWI! Use only half of the whole kiwi, though. Your bulgogi won’t even have big chunks if you put the whole thing – half joking. 😉 If you don’t have a kiwi, you can use half of a pear. This will add a nice tone to your marinade as well.

Now, you can mix everything together. You can put a little ground pepper as well. When you marinate the meat, you can also add onions as in the picture above. Let it sit for a couple of hours. You can even wait a day to cook it. Once you are ready to stuff your face with this deliciousness, cook it on a pan. No oil is needed. Add mushrooms (button mushrooms or shiitake mushrooms are usually good), which go perfectly well with bulgogi. Cook it until it’s ready, which doesn’t take too long.

One thing about my mom’s recipe is that “Coke” part. You can add a little more water instead of that but her bulgogi does taste gooooooooooood. 🙂 Like I said, everyone seems to have his/her own bulgogi recipe so do some experiment and find your own recipe! It’s another fun part of cooking, right? 😉 Serve it over white sticky rice maybe with some kimchi. That’s one complete meal! Enjoy!

Kimchi Stuffed Chicken Thighs

How does this dish look? Whatever you think, it’s beyond that! 🙂

Here’s a little behind-story of how this dish was born! Main ingredients are kimchi and chicken. Kimchi is a traditional Korean food but this dish is not traditionally “Korean”. Actually, I gotta thank my husband – ex hotel chef- who created this awesome dish for the Korean Food Cooking Contest held in Seoul, Korea in 2011. There were a lot of “foreigners” who cooked great dishes but his kimchi stuffed chicken thighs were the most loved dish by the audience, who were mostly culinary students. Since then, it’s been HIS dish and I am totally stealing it this time because I did it on my own with a little personal touch!  :p

*** Recipe ***

1. Get a couple of chicken thighs and debone them.

2. Pound them flat, if necessary.

3. Sautee some chopped kimchi. Depending on your preference, add veggies and/or cooked rice. I put some zucchini (to add more color) and rice.

4. Spread the cooked kimchi onto the flat chicken thighs and roll them.

5. Season the outer part of the chicken thighs – the hubby used sweet Thai chili sauce but this time I used bacon, which turned out to be really good.

6. Put them in the oven for 25-30 minutes (380°F) COVERED.

7. Get rid of the cover and broil them for about 5-10 minutes (both sides) so they get that sexy color!

Tada~ You see what I am saying about that sexiness here??!! Let them sit for a couple of minutes before you slice and plate them.

You can do so much with this dish in terms of presentation. I cooked some cauliflower to go with it. The hubby made some tangy salad last time (first picture above). Get creative and amuse your senses! Enjoy!

 

 

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Thai Fried Rice with Shrimp

Thai Fried Rice with Shrimp

My absolute favorite food in the whole world. If I had to choose one dish to eat for the rest of my life, this would be it! No brainer! Sometimes, Thai restaurants don’t even have this on their menu, so this is what I do. “Can I have fried rice with shrimp? A fried egg on top. Spicy fish sauce on the side, please.” Surprisingly, every single Thai restaurant brings out exactly the same thing. I’ve never failed with this one.

-Behind story on this: I was in Thailand in 2011. I ended up walking into a very “not super clean” marketplace and no one there spoke English. I was dying of hunger so I just pointed at some food this guy was eating. This was it. I fell in love right away!

Please share the recipe if you know the secret!