Sunday, October 25, 2009

What I've Been Eating Lately

I was talking with my mom the other day and we always end up talking about food or cooking. I love discussing recipes with her and dishes that she cooked for us when I was a child. I'm very much my mom's daugther in that I almost always cook/eat Asian food. Mom's food is always #1.

As a child, I would help my mom wrap eggrolls. Whenever she had leftover filling, she would make egg foo young. Or at least that's what I called it. I've never had egg foo young in a Chinese restaurant. To the eggroll filling (which has ground pork, shredded carrot, bean thread noodle, cloud ear mushroom) I added eggs, minced garlic, chopped green onion, a pinch of sugar, and some fish sauce. I fried it and served with steamed rice. It takes me back to my childhood.

Of course, I am always craving Nam (that's what I had always called it)/nem khao. I never have som moo so I use ham. Dallaslao does a great version of it here .

This is my (very sad) attempt at making meat filled empanadas. When I was a child, my father would always get me a flakey pastry filled with meat whenever he went to the Asian market. After a few years, he stopped bringing them home. He said he couldn't find them anymore. When I lived in the Chicago area, I would often check the stores for them and never found them. I think the versions I've eaten had a pork/shredded carrot filling or a taro filling. They were so delicious.

I didn't know what they were called. I searched on the internet and I think they are called banh quai vac. I found this article on it. I used to make these empanadas years ago using a recipe I found in one of my mom's Chinese cookbooks. In that particular recipe, the pastry was made with all purpose flour, salt, butter, and coconut milk. I used my own filling recipes. Sometimes I would make a curried potato filling or one with ground pork and shredded carrots. Next time I make these, I will work on my wrapping technique. I was too much in a hurry to eat them this time.

I'm Lao, I have to eat laap moo a few times a month.

While driving around El Cajon looking for a place to eat, my eating companion and I stopped at Jack in the Box for a pumpkin pie shake. I love pumpkin pie, pumpkin bars, pumpking bread, but I'm not fond of shakes. It tasted like pumpkin and spices and was very thick.

I was in Santee last week trying to hunt down some pieces for a Halloween costume (which I'm still debating whether to dress up or not this year) and came across this place. It was 11am and the lights were on but the OPEN sign was off. I didn't go in this time. But next time I will. I love a good burger. It's called Double Value Fine Burgers. I saw only 2 reviews on yelp.

Next week is going to be Halloween madness. I still need to find cookie cutters..sigh.