Scrumptious CubeFood Ginger Snaps

21 01 2008

Written by Silvercube

No matter what store you buy cookies in, most of you will probably agree that home-made cookies are the best. Today I went out and purchased Ginger Snap cookies thinking that they would taste at least somewhat remotely to how I make them. When I opened the bag, and tried a cookie, I thought to myself this cookie is gross! Not to mention the chemicals and preservatives added in.

Today guest writer Silvercube is here to tell you about making delicious ginger snap cookies. What are wonderful about these cookies is that they are known to stay fresh longer, and do not require the time to make them into shapes, as you would with gingerbread cookies.

An interesting “did you know” fact: According to many health experts, ginger is good for you. In an article written by Gloria Tsang, RD – she explains: “Ginger is a common spice known for its “stimulating carminative” property throughout the world, especially in Asia. We can cook it in hot dish for its pungent flavor, or eat it raw like the raw ginger marinated with vinegar in Japanese cuisine. Because of its action on promoting gastrointestinal circulation, significant evidence has been brought up of the usefulness of ginger against motion sickness, nausea and vomiting.”

So for those on business trips who get sick on the plane, or if you are on a cruise ship- or even just every day life- bring some home-made ginger snap cookies with you, because not only do they taste good but they make you feel good.

Anyways, one thing interesting you will find with my recipes is that they contain all kosher ingredients. That’s right, there will be no mention of miss piggy in my recipes. I have personally tried this recipe, and usually make them in a convection oven. So let’s begin! Let me know how they turn out, Enjoy!

Ginger Snaps [Silvercube Style]

◊ Ingredients:

* 3/4 cup shortening
* 1-cup light brown sugar, firmly packed
* 1 egg
* 1/4 tsp salt
* 4 Tbsp molasses
* 1 Tbsp water
* 2 1/3 cups flour
* 2 tsp baking soda
* 1/2 tsp ground cloves
* 1 tsp ground cinnamon
* 1 tsp ground ginger

◊ Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Cream together shortening and brown sugar until well mixed – light, and fluffy.
3. Beat together well the egg, salt, and molasses and then mix them with above mixture.
4. Sift together flour, baking soda, ground cloves, cinnamon and ginger.
5. Add dry ingredients to first wet mixture and combine well.
6. Chill in the refrigerator a few hours or overnight.
7. After chilled, shape dough into balls about walnut sized and place balls on a greased cookie sheet, allowing room for expansion. Flatten balls with a fork.
8. Bake in 350-degree oven 12 to 15 min. Do not let get too brown.
(I usually bake them for about 11 minutes- I like them more chewy)

Servings: About 6 dozen (72 cookies)

For a few variations, you can substitute water for milk, and have a little bit of dairy in your snap. Try experimenting with time to get your desired texture- I prefer 10-11 minutes because I like them more chewy. They can last up to about two weeks if stored properly in an airtight container. You can always freeze some and save them for later.





Japanese cubeFood

8 01 2008

I started out my new year’s resolution to try and do a healthy diet and I chose the Japanese Diet. Which I believe is the most healthies diet there is…that’s why they’re only 3% of their population that is overweight, compaired to the U.S.’s 30%…yikes!

 For the past week starting January 1st., I started eating all Japanese food, from sashimi, white rice, miso soup, tofu etc… and limiting my red meat intake. I gotta tell ya, I’ve been feelin’ pretty good! I’ve also been reading Naomi Moriyama’s: Japanese Women Don’t Get Old or Fat: Secrets of My Mother’s Tokyo Kitchen which is an excellent book if you’re “turnin’ Japanese” :)

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Sushi making isn’t as complicated as everyone would think. All you need is rice, some few good pieces of raw tuna or salmon or whatever fish you prefer, cucumber, nori wraps or sea weed strips, soy sauce and wasabi and you’ve got yourself your own sushi bar…and for the fraction of the cost of what these things actually would cost in Japanese Restaurants…yeouch!

So for people who are too squirmish to eat raw fish…Try making fried Octopus Balls or Takoyaki. Since I live in a place where nothing interesting ever happens, I tried substituting it with squid instead. Seriously…my area, too many rich people that would barf if they see squid or octopus tentacles…ugh!

So here’s the recipe…enjoy and tell me what you think!

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 Fried Octopus Balls (Takoyaki)

Ingredients:

  • 1.5 lbs. squid, cleaned and chopped
  • 1/4 cup dried sakura ebi (red shrimp)
  • cooking oil
  • chopped negi (or scallions) (to taste)
  • tenkasu (or rice crispies) (to taste)

[Batter]:

  • 2 1/2 cup dashi soup (or fish stock)
  • 15g powdered katsuo-bushi (shaved dried bonito)
  • 1 cup flour
  • 2 eggs

[Sauce]:

  • commercial takoyaki sauce
  • or worcestershire sauce
  • or mayonnaise (Best Foods or Hellman’s)

PREPARATION:

Mix flour, dashi soup, and eggs in a bowl to make batter. Thickness of the batter should be like potage soup. Put oil inside cups of a takoyaki grill pan. Pour batter in the cups to the full.  Add chopped squid, and green onion in each hole. Grill takoyaki balls, turning with a pick. When takoyaki become rounds and brown, remove them from the pan and place in a plate. Put sauce and mayonnaise on takoyaki.
**note: Takoyaki pans can be purchaged at specialty asian food stores or at amazon.com 
Cooking time: 10-20 minutes

Servings: 50-60 pieces (4-5 persons)





Wow… starting over

8 01 2008

I apologize for not posting anything in this blog. I’ve been so busy at work and preoccupied with my gaming blog that I totally forgot about this food blog that I have. Sorry CubeFood Blog!

 I should update this often from now on… I promise!

 Prepare to see some weird and wacky recipes, articles and everything food.





Video Games and Food… what could be more heavenly?!

16 11 2007

So I was browsing around looking for something interesting on the web and came across a Super Mario inspired wedding cake! I thought to myself…”Now why didn’t I think of that!?” Since I met my hubby on SOCOM, an online game for PS2, we should’ve had a SOCOM wedding cake!

 This is from another blog I saw online as seen here. How cool is this cake?!

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How about this Gears Of War cake I found online from this blog

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And this DS cake found in this blog

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And the best one… a PS3 cake in the Wired.com blog site

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How’s that for a yummy treat?!





And the next Iron Chef is…

12 11 2007

Chef Michael Symon!

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Click here to learn more about Chef Symon

I didn’t watch most of the episodes and never really got to see how and who were eliminated first because I thought the show was a bit dry. Then again I think it’s just me who thought so. I didn’t want to sit through all the episodes on Sunday when Food Network played an entire Marathon of “The next Iron Chef” and just waited until the actual final elimination. Since the begining I always thought Chef Michael Symon was going to win this, he has always executed his food beautifuly since the start of the show. And he has this more laid back personality to him which I think the judges loved. I was really happy to see him win the Next Iron Chef match because I think he would bring some flare into the Iron Chef stage.

Eliminated during the first five episodes of the six-week series were fellow CIA graduate Jill Davie ’96, Chris Cosentino, Traci Des Jardins, Gavin Kaysen, Morou Ouattara, and Aaron Sanchez. Symon, 38, is the executive chef/owner of Lola and Lolita restaurants in Cleveland. He will join Cora, Flay and Morimoto as an Iron Chef on “Iron Chef America.”

from PoughkeepsieJournal.com

I also found out, or it might be a Food Network rumor that Chef Mario Batalli may not return on the shows future episodes which I’m really upset about because He is one of my favorite Iron Chefs along with Chef Morimoto, one of the original Iron Chef in Japan.

Now I can’t wait to watch Chef Symon’s matches in the show, I’m sure he’ll bring a new twist to the show’s already eclectic line-up of Chefs.

To learn more about the show and learn more about these masters of cooking, go to foodnetwork.com/ironchefamerica





Sweet Chili Pork Skewers

5 11 2007

My co-worker asked me if I can make him something for the potluck as well. And since I love cooking for other people and helping them out, I said yes and decided to make him Sweet Chili Pork Skewers:

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1/4 cup Sweet chili Sauce
1 tbsp Tomato Ketchup
1 tsp Sriracha Hot Chili Sauce
2 cloves Garlic, minced
2 tbsp. Soy Sauce
1 tsp. Brown Sugar
Medium size Bamboo skewers (about 25 pcs) submerged in water for about 30 mins.
Cilantro to garnish

Directions:
To make the sauce, combine all the ingredients in a large bowl. Add the chicken pieces to the sauce and stir to coat thoroughly. Transfer them to a roasting pan and arrange in a single layer. Let sit in the refrigirator for about 25-30 minutes to marinate. While waiting, preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
Transfer the roasting pan to the oven and cook the chicken for 20 minutes, or until cooked through and sticky. Garnish with cilantro.





Mini Chicken skewers and Tzatziki Sauce

5 11 2007

This Wednesday, my work will be having a potluck in celebration of a momentus event for our company. To celebrate, we were given 2 choices, potluck or company paid lunch at a pizza place. And Potluck got the most votes! I see a lot of people love to cook and for me, of course I picked Potluck…it would give me a chance to display my culinary expertise. I won’t be making anything fancy but I think people will enjoy them. I’ll be making Mini Chicken skewers and on the side, Tzatziki Sauce… a Greek sauce made from yogurt, diced cucumber and garlic, used as a dip or condiment. It is usually seen inside Falafels. Make the Tzatziki first because it will need a couple of hours to chill before serving.

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To make Tzatziki sauce:

2 1/2 cups plain yogurt
4 Garlic cloves chopped finely
2 medium Cucumbers, peeled, seeded and very finely diced
1 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
3 tbsp Lemon Juice
Salt and Pepper to taste
Paprika to garnish

Place all ingredients in a serving bowl and stir together until well combined. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours before serving.

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5-7 skinless boneless chicken breast, cut in about 1/2 inch thick and cubed (I will be making them pretty small so 5-7 will do)
1/4 cup Cilantro, cut into small pieces
1/4 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
2 cloves Garlic, minced
3 tsp Lemon (use more or less depending on your taste)
25 medium sized bamboo skewers (submerged in water for about 30 mins before cooking chicken)
Salt and pepper to taste

Mix all ingredients together and add chicken. Refrigerate the chicken for a couple of hours to marinate. Once done marinating, preheat oven to 375 degrees, place chicken in skewers and place in oven for about 20-25 minutes or until golden.








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