pickled jalapenos

Pickled Jalapenos

i read a meme recently
that basically said
the month of August
is like a long Sunday night
for teachers/educators.
while i am not a teacher
this rings such truth for me.
i feel a sort of melancholy that
the summer is half over,
never mind that it’s over a month out.

summers of late
have me pickling,
which leaves our fridge littered
with random jars of experiments.
we tend to have purges
of the most random soured/salted/sweetened
vegs piled high on toast,
the essence of summer in messy, briny bites
during the dark of all other months
where temps don’t go further than 40F.

Pickled Jalapenos

pickled jalapenos
adapted from gimme delicious food

*note: the first time we made this we deseeded the jalapenos and followed the recipe exactly. it was delicious, but the 2nd time we made this i only deseeded half the peppers and i used a rice vinegar instead, because we ran out of the white stuff. still delicious. it has a spice kick to it but that doesn’t deter me from snacking on them. they would be great chopped up and added to tuna or chicken salads, or topped on hot dogs.

1 cup rice vinegar
1 cup water
2 cloves garlic, smashed & rough chopped
3 TBL sugar
1 TBL salt
7-8 jalapeno peppers, thinly sliced, deseeded

wash and slice jalapeno peppers, aim for thin, but it’s up to you. you wanna be careful, the spiciness can stay on your finger tips for awhile, so don’t rub your eyes or other parts of your body. deseed if you want. set aside.

mix all the ingredients in a saucepan. bring to a boil and add the slices. mix it up, make sure all the slices are sufficiently dunked.

carefully transfer the contents of the saucepan to a mason jar. i used a quart jar.

allow to cool before lidding.

BAM!

Pickled Jalapenos

4 years ago: chocolate + coconut macaroons
3 years ago: homemade bánh cướn chay
2 years ago: popcorn
1 year ago: zucchini ravioli

all other pickled stuff:
bread & butter pickles
brinjal pickle hummus
pickled beets
veitnamese pickled carrots & dakon

B.O.T.C.H. Cream Cheese Spread

BOTCH Cream Cheese Spread

this post was created in partnership with Green Valley Organics.

in college i had a secret job.
secret because i wasn’t allowed to work
during the school term,
it was deemed that i was to focus on studying,
#TigerParents
but i deemed that i needed to focus
on how to pay covers into bars/frat parties.
#Priorities
i worked at a bagel shop
right off campus
where i learned the subtle art
of slapping on full fat cream cheese for sorority girls.
#AlphaAlphaKissMyAss
this was in the time before
real dietary restrictions,
like gluten-free or nut allergies for others,
and most notably for me, lactose intolerance.

for a time i didn’t eat bagels,
due to the over-saturation of the stuff,
but also due to not being able to consume it
slathered with full fat cream cheese.
now, both are back in my life.

happy end of july,
hello august,
we are sweaty, but well,
hope you are too, friends.

BOTCH Cream Cheese Spread

this post is sponsored by green valley organics. all thoughts and opinions are my own. the first time i discovered this product, i damn near cried. dairy can be in my diet again without any adverse impact. basically, they’re making my dairy dreams come true. thanks so much for supporting the sponsors that keep morestomachblog up+running, toot-free.

B.O.T.C.H Cream Cheese Spread
*note: this cream cheese is softer than that of regular cream cheese. if you’re using a regular cream cheese, leave container out for 15-20 min to soften a bit.
**note: this was a super popular flavored cream cheese at the shop, but the original recipe uses fresh tomatoes, dried chives and red or white onions. due to the wetter consistency of this product, i went dry with the tomatoes and made sure the chives and spring onion were wiped dry after washing.

1 container of green valley organic lactose-free cream cheese
1/3 cup of crumbled bacon
1/4 cup fine chopped spring onion
1/3 cup rough chopped dried sun-dried tomatoes (not in oil!)
1/4 fresh chives, finely chopped

in a stand mixer whip/cream the cream cheese a bit, not too much, it is soft already but you want it pliable enough to take on the added ingredients.

add all the ingredients in the bowl and mix it real quick, just enough to combine everything together.

transfer mixture to a container with a lid.

fridge, covered, to firm up.

spread on your favorite bagel or toast.

if you’re feeling fancy, it makes a great sub for mayo in a generic BLT sandwich.

BAM!

BOTCH Cream Cheese Spread

4 years ago: green tomato & mint chutney
3 years ago: homemade thai iced tea
2 years ago: not a damn thing
1 year ago: chilled somen noodles with cold mushroom broth

hot pot + condiments

Randoms

a few things have shifted
in the last few years:
i don’t wear make up much anymore,
like my cakes,
my face is naked,
and it’s all the better for it.
i’ve also leaned twds repeat recipes,
meals that stand the test of time,
but mainly,
dishes that i know are pleasing
and full-filling.
hot pot makes an appearance
when the weather turns
for the cold,
and then to the ebbing winter,
bookends in autumn and spring,
it is best shared with friends,
though it’s just as lovely for two.

Randoms

there are plenty of versions,
though i am partial to the viet style
(surprise surprise).
differences are in the dipping sauces
and the broth.
the recipe i’ve featured is the most commonly
found in my family home,
though one of the sauces is japanese in origin.
there was the one time i made a stinky anchovy-pineapple sauce
that i absolutely adore,
but would hesitate to serve to friends.
these pictures are from past hot pot gatherings,
as the most recent shared meal did not
garner any publishable pix.
we’ve been hit with a wave of freezing temps,
and this has kept us afloat until spring makes her appearance.

Randoms

hot pot dinner + condiments
serves 2 – 8 people

*note: when i make this, i don’t really measure anything. it is all based on what is available in the pantry, and how things taste that day. but these are the general list of ingredients, but i recommend tasting as you go. like, i’m freaking out right now trying to think up how i made the sauces because i do not have exact amounts, and it never comes out the same every time. it still tastes good though…

the meal itself:
mushrooms – any variety
tofu – cubed to bite size
variety of sliced meats – wegmans and asian markets now have them available, already cut and packaged
meat and fish balls – can be found in frozen section of asian markets, i gravitate twds the shrimp, fish, beef and pork balls
glass noodles
baby bok choy, and whatever else greens you fancy to eat

hot pot stock:
1-2 bottles of beer, usually Heineken
2-4 cups of bland chicken stock, no sodium or as little as possible
2-3 bruised lemongrass stocks
2″ knob of ginger, smashed
2-3 cloves of garlic, smashed

add all together in pot, bring to a boil and simmer, with lid on, for about 30 minutes.

dipping sauce #1 – spicy soy sauce:
1 cup soy sauce or tamari
1/4 cup rice vinegar
3 TBL maple syrup or honey
3 cloves of garlic, minced
2″ knob of ginger, grated
1/2 cup of water, give or take
juice of half a lime
1 tsp sesame oil
garlic-chili sambal, optional, to taste

in a jar with lid, mix everything together. taste it. add more of something if needed. you’re aiming for hits of sweet, sour, and salty.

dipping sauce #2 – goma dare/tahini miso sauce
3 TBL rice vinegar
1 TBL mirin
1 heaping TBL miso
1/3 cup tahini
1 TBL soy sauce or tamari
2 TBL maple syrup or honey
1 garlic clove, minced
2″ knob of ginger, grated
1 tsp sesame oil
water to thin

in a jar with lid, mix everything together. add water to thin, you’re aiming for almost a dressing-like consistency, season to taste.

to assemble the entire thing:
put the electric hot plate in the middle of the table. simmer the hot pot stock. remove the lemongrass stalks, ginger pieces and garlic cloves.

while that is doing its thing, display the plates of sliced meats and veggies around.

assemble all your friends and go to town with the cooking of everything.

when i’m hosting, i usually play facilitator… i leave it to each person to cook their meats according to preference. i usually throw in the glass noodles, handful of bok choy/greens, meatballs, tofu and mushroom… then everyone else can choose sliced meats to cook at their leisure.

as the meal goes on, the broth gets deeply flavored from all the added meats, seafood, and vegs. you can sip the soup if you want. add more stock or beer as needed.

BAM!

hot pot

3 years ago: quinoa chocolate cake (gluten free)
2 years ago: seaweed sushi bites
1 year ago: ginger tumeric latte

Miso Hummus topped with Seaweed Furikake

Miso Hummus topped with seaweed furikake

a few great things that have happened recently:

i finally saw heart in concert
seeing as how the sisters are Wilsons,
there being that very slim chance of us being related,
i had to see them live.
alas after seeing their performance,
in my scientific opinion
we do not have the same talent genes,
they’re effing amazing.

i actually don’t despise podcasts, it came down to finding the right ones
a few of my fave:
Dear Sugar,
mortified,
& unqualified
i like the 2nd one so much,
we’re going to see them later this week when they’re in town
(if you’re local, let’s meet up!)
(just don’t be weird/creepy)

inspired by the Great British Bake Off,
i entered a chicken soup cookoff.
i spent part of the weekend making the stock
and then a large portion of sunday evening
making the first batch of Experiment Soup.
that’s lunch this week.
the cycle starts again this weekend,
up until Contest Day.
i will post the recipe after the contest.

Miso Hummus topped with seaweed furikake

Miso Hummus topped with Seaweed Furikake
makes about 2 cups

note: dw & i are on the never ending searching for smooth homemade hummus. we’ve made our fair share, with varying results of smoothness. what’s great about hummus is that it’s a very blank slate and it’s entirely up to you how you want to flavor and season. we’ve had the very very basic garlic version to herby to now this: miso flavored. all i know is, it’s a dish that brings people together, correction: brings different people together, a sentiment that lina of the lebanese plate is most passionate about. in today’s political climate, domestic and aboard, it’s scary times. let’s stop being assholes and share some great food. #SpreadHummusNotHate
*note: local/baltimore folk: Great Sage is having a family style Middle East Peace Dinner. get on that.

1 cup dried chickpeas, soaked overnight
healthy pinch of baking soda
2 TBL miso (i used brown rice)
generous 1/3 cup tahini
1/4 – 1/3 cup cold water
1 tsp sesame oil, at the end, and to top

seaweed furikake, as previously seen in Somen Noodle Bowl
2 sheets of nori/seaweed, shredded by hand
2-3 TBL toasted sesame seeds, very important to toast!
1 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp sesame oil
pinch of salt

in a bowl, mix the furikake together. set aside.

soak chickpeas with pinch of baking soda, leave on counter overnight. they will double in size, it’s quite alarming.

next morning, drain and rinse. in a big saucepan add the beans with more than you think you’ll need water, about 4-5″ above the beans. bring to a boil, lower temp and simmer for about 1 hour. test for done-ness and then boil for a bit longer. i usually aim for about 1.5 – 2 hours boil time.

drain and add the cooked beans into a food processor. lina (along with other people, dw included) says to skin the beans for extra smoothness but my lazy ass was not gonna bother. add in the miso and tahini. blitz until smooth. then blitz some more. very slowly and carefully, add in the cold water until it reaches the loose consistency you’re aiming for. i like to aim for slightly runny, because as the hummus cools, it’ll thicken up.

top with the seaweed furiake and serve with chips/rice crackers/vegs.

it tastes better the next day as the flavors have had time to meld.

BAM!

Miso Hummus topped with seaweed furikake

3 years ago: diy watercolor wedding invites (!!!)
2 years ago: homemade lactose free ricotta cheese
1 year ago: bún riêu – vietnamese seafood noodle soup

fast ‘n dirty bread & butter pickles

bread & butter pickles

after 2 hours of driving
we stop off at a small town
down by the shore.
there are long limbs that require stretching
and growling stomachs in need of food,
plus, Pokemon to be caught
(for the record, it’s dw who’s playing,
not the kids)
we sit at table that is in a cafe
that also fronts as a pharmacy.
the boys consume everything in front of them
everything except the gherkin pickles,
which are delicious
crisp and sweet and sour.
they remind me of my grandfather
who loved that combination.

with that in mind,
i picked up 4 pounds of pickling cukes
from the market saturday morning,
and spent minimal time in the kitchen
preparing them.
they came out with such snap.
dw could’ve done without the coriander seeds
but i like them.

i made enough to keep a large jar
but also a smaller jar to gift for a sick friend.

hope your summer is going swell.
be good to each other.

bread & butter pickles

fast ‘n dirty bread & butter pickles
makes 1 half gallon + 1 quart jars <= how’s that for crazy measurement?

*note: you can up the amount of sugar if you want it sweeter. i was more interested in getting the crunch and the salt step is key to getting that.

about 3-4 lbs of pickling cucumbers, cleaned and sliced about 1″ thick
3 generous TBL kosher salt
1 large onion sliced
2 scant cups of coconut sugar
2 cups white vinegar
1 cup apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup brown sugar
3-4 tsp mustard seeds
2 tsp coriander seeds, optional
healthy dash of ground tumeric

in a big mixing bowl add the sliced cukes and sprinkle in the salt. mix it all and then cover in fridge for about 2 hours. them cukes are going to pee liquid something fierce. you’ll be amazed. drain the cukes and rinse thoroughly. drain as much of the water out as possible. add in the sliced onions and toss together.

in a saucepan heat up the rest of the ingredients until simmering and the sugars have dissolved. turn off heat.

in jars divvy up the cukes and onion. pour the hot vinegar liquid over the vegs. allow to cool to room temp and then lid and fridge. will keep for a month, but must be well covered and anytime you pull pickles out, use a clean utensil.

BAM!

bread & butter pickles

3 years ago: spicy cantaloupe salad
2 years ago: pickled beets
1 year ago: apparently i was a bum last year around this time