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Korean Scallion Pancake and Bean Sprouts

I had a craving for Korean food today. I love the stuff, and not just their famous charcoal barbeque. I had a bunch of scallions (green onions) in the fridge so Pajeon (scallion pancake) seemed fitting. I’d say it’s sort of a cross between a crepe and an omelette.

To me, the best thing about Korean food is the banchan. Even if you only order a bowl of noodles, there will always be an abundance of it on the table. Banchan is like the Korean equivalent of tapas. There are plates and plates of goodies like the most famous one – kimchi – and others such as sweet potato, spinach, cucumbers and bean sprouts.

Kongnamul (I’m sure there are hundreds of different spellings for this) is one of the most quintessential banchan and is always used in bibimbap. It’s really just blanched bean sprouts which are then seasoned with sesame oil, a touch of soy sauce, finely chopped scallions, finely minced garlic and sesame seeds. Sometimes sugar is added too.

No recipe is needed because you adjust the seasoning according to taste. I chilled mine because I like it cold and crunchy. As the recipe for Pajeon suggests, I cooled it to room temperature and served it with the bean sprouts and a squidgen of Korean mayonnaise. Perfect for a simple summer lunch for one.

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Spicy Tomato Bruschetta

Gosh it’s warm today – 30°C (86°F). I’m not complaining about the weather, not one bit, especially when I know how long the winter’s been going on in the US – too darn long, if you ask me.

I’m making use of beautiful, fresh summer produce for lunch: Spicy Tomato Bruschetta.

At heart, this is just tomatoes on toast. I thought I’d jazz it up a tad. I mixed some chopped tomatoes with pepper, olive oil, aged Barolo vinegar and some dried pepperoncini flakes for kick. Oh, and salt. Salt is tomato’s best friend. Sea salt, please. Yes, all you non-believers, there is a difference. Toast/grill a couple of slices of sourdough, and top with the tomato mixture.

Don’t forget the juices. I slurped it up out of the bowl. Erm, I mean, I drizzled it onto the toasts. I’m trying to be politically correct here.

Enjoy.

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Cilantro-Lime Grilled Swordfish

I bought some swordfish earlier today so I thought I’d do something simple with it to take advantage of its freshness. I marinated it with some chopped cilantro (coriander), olive oil, chopped green chili, sea salt and pepper.

Then I grilled the fish and some broccoli florets, and served everything with a squeeze of lime. Tasted like grilled ceviche, which I guess is what this is, essentially.

A quiet Friday night for me. Now, I’m just waiting for Idol to start.

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Peanut Butter & Crackers

This morning, I saw an article on seriouseats. Peanut butter is one of my favourite foods. I always have it in my kitchen. Crunchy, please. I love it in cakes, cookies, pies, ice cream, with chocolate, on toast with jelly, on pancakes, on celery sticks… Okay, I was kidding about the celery sticks. I meant carrot sticks.

Which is why I was taken aback when I read the article. How could I not have thought of something so seemingly rudimentary like this? I was upset with myself.

Of course, being 9am in the morning, I convinced myself peanut butter for breakfast is typical. I know, I have arguments in my head all the time.

In the article, water crackers were photographed. Being a stickler for ‘original recipes’, I followed.

I can’t say it was a life-changing moment for me. But, they were delicious. And, certainly, a beautiful thing.

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Eggs on Toast

Friday lunch – eggs on toast. There are millions of interpretations of this dish and this is just one of mine.

I love how orange the yolks are. My favourite way of scrambling eggs is adding green onions (or spring onions) before beating the mixture.

Salt and pepper too, of course.

I have no idea why my food is always yellow and green. I don’t mean to leave out the reds and blues (blue skittles?), but I think I need to buy some tomatoes the next time I grocery shop. Or red bell peppers. Or kimchi. Or chilli padi.

I’ll stop now.

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And the nominees are…

                                                            (photo courtesy of Oscar.com)

The stage is set (literally). The time of the bald gold man is here again. We all know what I’m talking about – The Oscars!

This year, there are 10 nominations for Best Picture. As if it weren’t difficult enough in previous years to choose a winner. The contenders are stellar. My favourites are The Blind Side and Up. I have this feeling that Avatar will win though. I mean, it’s only grossed like billions of dollars. Gees.

                                      (photo courtesy of Oscar.com)

I’m also rooting for Sandra Bullock. I’ve always liked her, and she’s been around for so long. It’s her time man. But she’s up against serious contenders – Meryl Streep? Helen Mirren?

The entire affair – from red carpet to end of award show – takes a few hours. I know where I’m gonna be on Sunday night, leaving a dent in my couch.

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