When kath is blogging

Bacons, eggs, hash browns and a pair of chopsticks. -Part 3

Posted in Food by Katharine on March 19, 2009

(continued from part 2)

After graduation, I was hired as a designer assistant at a bridal company downtown. As I started to get paid and had more money to spend, the way I eat changed. In the morning, I’d get a bowl of chocolate rice krispie for breakfast, or a bottle of drinkable yogurt. Yogurt is definitely not a Chinese thing… I didn’t get it the first time I had it. For dessert, it’s too sour, and doesn’t really fill you up, I’d rather get a cup of ice-cream, and Chinese doesn’t really eat cold sour taste thing for breakfast…

For lunch, I still went to a deli nearby where they serve food in buffet style. In summer days I get a box of pre-made sushi, 8 pieces of California with a bowl of clam chowder would do it. In winter times, I’d get some peppery lo mien, a piece of chicken, of other meat with thick sauce on it, some Chinese veggie, maybe a few piece of kimchi, one piece of sushi in Korean style and a spoonful of corn sprinkle on top of my lo mien. Usually I get out of the deli under $6.

It’s at this time that I started to cook more often at home for dinner, and always save a bit and make a lunch box for the other day. I tried to recreate the basil fried rice from Aceluck, it turned out to be something different but good. Most of the time, I fried some pork or chicken in Asian sauce and then pair it up with lettuce, an boiled egg and some croutons as a salad. I started to stock up a few bottle of salad dressing: honey dijon, Italian, red wine vinaigrette… I also bought the spray one with very low calories that was on commercial, in Caesar delight flavor. I also invested in a small bottle of olive oil with truffle in it.

During the day I wanted somehting more filling, I cook pasta. For the sauce I started out heating up some Alfredo sauce and add a tons of cheese in it and let it melt and mix together, and sometimes I also add in red chili. Sometimes i just lay the pork or chicken on top, but then I soon have my favorite combination with pasta: shrimp. Buy a bag of shrimp from wholefoods (for some reason, it’s cheaper and nicer there than food emporium), fried it up with some butter with some dried basil, or seasoned it with some asian barbeque sauce and some chili sauce. So far, I think spicy shrimp with creamy pasta is me at my best. Occasionally I’d tuck in a few pieces of roquette in it.

So when I just do the pork or chicken, I often save a few pieces and make a sandwich out of it for lunch box. Here are what I’d put in between two slices of Chinese bread: meat I cook from the night before, lettuce, organic salami from wholefoods, an egg and some salad dressing… Honey Dijon do the best here. the cheese would be melted with the meat by lunch time.

I started to buy some food magazine and book, and I just loved to experiment and cook something out of the magazine. It was definitely fun and turned into something I really enjoy doing. I’m proud of myself in making shrimp with mango in champagne sauce, and salad with salmon in miso sauce.

With more money to spend, of course dining out is another option (ok, at someone else’s expense). I began to try out more restaurants in New York. Fun Japanese restaurant in St mark’s, French fusion restaurant in Soho, American restaurant Midtown and Asian BBQ in DIY style uptown. I also ventured in Atomic Wings (suicidal, baby.), Cozi, Chipotle, Shake-shack and an awesome street food cart. The low end New York food is definitely something my brother and sister won’t dig it, but I think they’re so missing out. By the way, I made wraps at home too, and I like to add a pinch of lemon juice in my chicken…

Another thing so great about living in New York was that there are so much to do for the weekend. One of my favorite was to take the metro north train and visit a town up along the Hudson River. It’s a very scenic place and great for picnic. For this I prefer something a bit more healthy. French baguette with organic honey turkey, with some nice brie cheese, some lettuce and fresh basil leaves. This came out from pret-a-manger originally.

After 6 years of food adventure and experiment in the United States, my taste and preference changed when I moved back to Hong Kong. I cook in a more fusion way, blending the Asian and the western together. Of course I still go to Chinese restaurant for lunch with my mom for dim sum, but I don’t really appreciate it as much as my relatives thought I would, as I could get those in the states anyway. I’d still go to a European grocery store and buy some cheese, a bottle of wine for a snack at home. When my mom is not cooking, instead of Chinese food, I’d make pasta or salad. Every now and then I crave for my typical American breakfast. So here I am, eating breakfast that I just cooked: two pepper bacon, two dippy eggs and two hash brown, and I’m eating with chopsticks.

-The End-

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