Fried Rice Replacement


Kimchi Fried Quinoa

I absolutely love rice! Blame it on my Asian heritage, but I could be perfectly content with having a bowl of white steamed rice as a part of my meals everyday for the rest of my life.. if I didn’t mind being haunted by the “carb voices” in my head saying “Resist that white starchy delicious fluff!”  So when I recently found myself in a predicament of having leftover kimchi I picked up from the Super H-Mart, I tried to steer away from the ever-popular kimchi fried rice.  But wait, quinoa to the rescue again! Sure, it’s still a grain, but packed with all that nutrients, I couldn’t dare turn away from the idea of Kimchi Fried Rice Quinoa.. topped with a sunny side-up egg…that is just foodie heaven!


Kimchi Fried Quinoa


  • 1 cup cooked Quinoa
  • 1/2 cup Kimchi, sliced
  • 1/4 White onion, diced
  • 2 tablespoons Soy sauce
  • 1 egg
  • Cracked pepper, to taste
  • Furikake seaweed rice seasoning (optional)


  • Using cooking spray, coat a pan and heat until hot
  • Add onions and kimchi, cooking for 3-5 minutes on medium-high
  • Add quinoa, soy sauce, and cracked pepper.  Combine until well mixed
  • In a separate pan, cook an egg sunny side-up
  • Top kimchi fried quinoa with sunny side-up egg; sprinkle furikake seasoning if desired.

Southern Comfort Food


Shrimp & Cheesy Quinoa


On a recent business trip to New Orleans, I discovered a new food that I truly love! A stick to your ribs, type of Southern comfort food.. GRITS! However, with this new discovery, I found myself longing for this delectable treat while back in my own kitchen.  How can I make something so delicious without feeling guilty as guilty for indulging on such a carb-loaded dish?  Quinoa to the rescue! Just as I mentioned previously, quinoa is such a versatile grain that is packed with protein, and has a similar texture to grits that it could just work.  I put my brainstorming hat on, and went to work; Shrimp & Cheesy Grits Quinoa


Shrimp & Cheesy Quinoa


  • 6 Large Shrimp, deveined 
  • 2 Cloves garlic, minced or finely sliced
  • 1/4 teaspoon Crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon Lemon thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon Lime juice
  • 1/2 cup Quinoa
  • 1 cup Water
  • 1/2 tablespoon butter
  • 1/3 cup Milk (any type- I used soy)
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • Olive oil (enough to coat a pan)
  • S&P to taste


  • Combine quinoa and water in a pot and bring to a boil; reduce to medium/low, cover and let simmer for 20 minutes
  • Meanwhile, coat a pan with olive oil; add garlic
  • Add shrimp, red pepper flakes, lemon thyme, and a dash of salt and pepper
  • When the shrimp is just about cooked, add lime juice to deglaze pan
  • When quinoa has absorbed the liquid, add milk, butter, and a dash of salt and pepper at medium for 3 minutes
  • Mix in cheddar cheese to quinoa
  • Plate cheesy quinoa and top with shrimp

Juicy Baked Chicken.. Makeover


Basil Lime Chicken

I did an earlier post on how to achieve Juicy Baked Chicken, and it was such a hit!  However, Juicy Baked Chicken is back, but with a makeover that will make your taste buds dance! This time, juicy baked chicken is still not only simple but with even more flavor that will make anyone think you’ve really marinated this for hours.  Try out Basil Lime Chicken and tell me if you enjoyed it more than the original!

Basil Lime Chicken


  • Boneless, skinless chicken breast
  • 4 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons Lime juice
  • 1 Garlic clove, minced
  • 1/8 Red onion, diced
  • 2 teaspoons Dried basil leaves
  • S&P to taste


  • Combine all the ingredients in a bowl, except the chicken
  • Place chicken in a baking dish, and cover chicken in sauce mixture
  • Bake uncovered at 375 degrees for 30 minutes, or until chicken is done

Better with Butter

Brown Butter

Is the truth behind what Paula Dean says actually true?  Is everything honestly better with butter?  Thinking about what the benefits of butter, it seems to be such an ideal ingredient.  It creates a smooth taste in baked goods, enhances flavor making our savory dishes more creamy, and integrates other herbs and spices to help bind to the main ingredient.  Once heated, butter can even release a nutty flavor, that we all know as a brown butter sauce!

With recently moving to Germany,  I’ve been exploring  all the new flavors and different foods surrounding me.  As a result, creating new dishes in the kitchen has not been my first priority (reference date of last post!) and my lack of eagerness to stock the kitchen has contributed to my motivation.  However, I’ve discovered that on Sundays in Germany, there is an actual law that forbids most businesses to be open!  To ensure that I don’t go into Sunday starvation mode, I attempted to make a dish with bare minimal ingredients.  As a result, I present to you…

Brown Butter Tagliatelle


-1 Cup Fresh tagliatelle pasta

-2 Tablespoons of butter

-1/8 Cup fresh prosciutto; chopped

-Salt and Pepper to taste


-Boil the fresh pasta until al dente.  With fresh pasta it should only take 2-3 minutes to cook.

-In a saucepan over med-high heat, add butter.  Stir butter once it starts to bubble, about 3 mins.

-To the saucepan add chipped prosciutto first, then cooked pasta.

-Stirring all ingredients together, and mix with salt and pepper to your liking!

French for Italian!

French Bread Loaf Raw


I’d like to know at least ONE person that doesn’t enjoy freshly baked warm bread with a crust that has an nice crunch, but still ever so pillow-y soft inside… Anyone?!  I challenge you to find me this person, because I don’t think he/she exists!  If you are reading my posts in order, you will notice that the last two posts prior to this one has a theme.  Well, I have to admit.. it was from the same dinner!  And this one isn’t any different!  I made this lovely french loaf to compliment my rustic Italian in-home dining experience.

The great thing is, although a bit of an arm workout (this is a pro, people! Not a con!)   there were minimal ingredients, and it turned out beautifully!  Complete your Italian dinner by making some homemade French bread tonight!

Above is the before baking picture.  Below fresh out of the oven before cutting!

French Bread Loaf


French Bread


  • 3 1/2 cups Flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Salt
  • 2 teaspoons Dry yeast
  •  1 1/2 cups Water, warm


  • Combine all ingredients until well mixed.  I used a KitchenAid mixer.
  • Once all combined, if too dry, add a bit of water so it can form a cohesive ball of dough.
  • Take out the dough and roll on floured-surface, ensuring the dough will not stick
  • Kneed, roll and form the dough of ball until it is no longer sticky, but instead has a smooth texture
  • Place in a large bowl that is lightly oiled, and loosely cover with a kitchen towel on top of the bowl
  • Place bowl of dough somewhere warm to rest for 1 hour
  • After the dough as rested, the dough should have doubled in size.
  • Roll out dough into a long log shape, and pinch the ends of the log folding under for rounded ends
  • Cut angled slits on the top of the log and place on a nonstick cookie sheet
  • Insert cookie sheet into the oven at 450 degrees
  • Prior to closing the oven door, pour 1/2 cup of water directly on the oven floor, creating steam. Shut the oven door!
  • Bake at 25 minutes


More than just Thanksgiving’s main attraction


“Turkey…it’s what’s for dinner!”  Okay, okay! So the famous American slogan for a beef campaign did not say this exact line in commercials, but maybe the should start?? Ground turkey is an absolute great substitute for ground beef when trying to trying to keep it on the leaner side.  However, I feel like turkey is only focused on as the star of dinner during Thanksgiving.  Why not give this bird an opportunity to please our palettes on more than just 1 day a year?!  Sure, we might throw it on sandwiches all the time, but let’s add some real flavor to this and make turkey a Sunday night feast-worthy!

 Turkey Spaghetti Meatballs


  • 1 lb Ground Turkey
  • 1 egg, whisked
  • 1/2 cup Panko
  • 2/3 cup Parsley, chopped
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan, shredded
  • 1/4 cup Minced, dry onions
  • 1/2 tablespoon Italian seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • 2 teaspoons Cracked pepper


  • Combine all ingredients, except the turkey, in a large mixing bowl
  • Add turkey, and mix well with hands
  • Once well combined, form meatballs into rounds.  For mine, I formed them into 2 inch rounds, since I was focusing on them being a main attraction
  • In a large pan, heat enough olive oil to coat the entire surface of the pan.
  • Once the oil is heated, add meatballs into the pan at medium-high heat and create a nice sear on all sides.  Cover with lid in between turning meatballs to sear
  • Once all the sides are seared, add spaghetti sauce and cover
  • Let sauce and meatballs simmer on medium-low for 10-15 minutes, depending on the size of the meatballs
  • Serve over delicious pasta, homemade pasta if you dare 🙂

Less fillers = More filling


The other night when I was planning on making spaghetti, I noticed that I didn’t have any noodles.  “Ah, time to add this to the grocery list.”  But wait, why not make my own?  I make lasagna noodles from scratch, why not pasta noodles in other forms?  So I decided to live up to the challenge make some pasta!

I channeled my “inner-grandma” and envisioned an elderly women in sunny Tuscany, wearing an apron, and perhaps wearing a loose bandanna on her head.  In her tiny, but adorably rustic kitchen, she is rolling out pasta, preparing for family dinner… Where do I get my imagination?! I digress.. haha!

Anyways, as you can see from the picture below, it’s quite easy!  Two parts eggs to one part flour! Not only was it easy to make with ingredients I already had, but it was filling!  Surprisingly more filling than store-bought noodles!  To elaborate on this, I can normally eat a MOUNTAIN of pasta drenched in sauce (maybe you didn’t need to know that I can eat enough for a small family.. hehe…).  With this homemade pasta, I could barely finish 1 cup worth of cooked pasta! Given, this was hand cut, and not as thin as regular spaghetti, but my mountain metaphor applies to all pastas 🙂

Making Pasta

Homemade Pasta


  • 2 cups Flour
  • 4 Eggs


  • On a clean surface, round a pile of flour. 
  • Create a hole in the middle of the flour with walls tall enough to contain eggs
  • Crack the eggs into the hole
  • Begin whisking the eggs with a fork and slowly incorporating the flour starting with the walls.
  • Once this becomes formed dough, use your hands to kneed the dough and incorporate the remaining flour.
  • Dough should not be sticking to your hands; add sprinkles of flour if this happens
  • Dough should also not be too dry, where pieces looked “cracked.”  If this happens, wet your hands and work the dough to incorporate just a bit of moisture.
  • Roll out your dough to ideally as thin as possible; it may be easier to start separating the dough in pieces instead of trying to roll the whole dough ball out.
  • Slice up the dough into whatever shape pasta you’d like; I used a pizza cutter to slice into strips.
  • Cook pasta in boiling salted water for 4 minutes.  Toss in olive oil to keep separated.