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Tag Archives | Sushi

‘S’ is for Simple Menu

‘Great Sauces Transform Good Food into Gourmet’ 

Simple and Healthy

‘S’ a double hairpin menu curve drove my kitchen this summer. A diversion from my , Asian Spring Asparagus Chickenregular ‘rarely cook the same thing twice’ in six months approach, my weekly fare consisted of five dishes: Stir Fry, Salad, Sandwiches, Sushi and Salmon. Sounds boring right – never, but simple. Heavy on fresh farmers market fruits and vegetables, this menu is light, healthy and fresh.


Spinach-Salad-Amid-Fresh-FruitStir Fry’s: Beef with Oyster Sauce, Pecan Chicken, Pork Chao Mian, Broccoli, Cabbage and Golden Zucchini with Pork, Asian Asparagus with Chicken, Shrimp and Chicken with Bamboo, Golden Coin Steak and Beef with Three Color Peppers.

BLAT-on-WheatSalads: Bacon and Egg Spinach with Poppy Seed Dressing, Quinoa Under Stained Glass, Bleu Cheese Tomato Wedge Salad, Asian Sesame Salad, Park City Salad, Caprese Salad, Mediterranean Quinoa Salad, Spinach Salad with Citrus, Peach Spinach Salad, Taco Salad with Creamy Tomatillo Sauce,Bleu Beet Salad, Cucumber Salad, Rustic Orzo Salad, Fruit Kabobs, Raw Corn and Zucchini Salad, Ty Cobb Salad, Chef’s Salad and Grilled Chicken Caesar’s.

Sandwiches: Reubens, Rachels, Grilled Ham and Cheese on Wheat, Ham and Cheese Subs, California BLT, BLT, Chicken Salad with Grapes in Croisants, Thai Larb, Lime and Tomato Tajicos, Andrew’s Pizza, White Pizza with Arugula, Burgers with Creamy Mustard Sauce, Falafel with Tzatziki Sauce, Mini Muffulettos, Chicken Curry Puffs, Bacon and Egg Salad Sandwiches and Italian Pressed Sandwiches.

Sushi-for-kidsSushi: We do a made-from-scratch, wrap-at-the-table Chirashi-sushi made in 30 minutes with shrimp, avocado and cucumber or crab, egg and cucumber, or any other combination with all vegetables. Never tire of sushi, love it!

Salmon: I call it salmon because it starts with “S” but I purchase fish or seafood from the fish market across the street on my way in from work on Friday. It’s so fresh. Salmon made it’s way to our table every other week. Black Bean Salmon, Japanese Salmon, White Fish with Golden Sweet Pepper Sauce, Fish Tacos, Fish Piccata with Lemon and Fresh Fish Sticks.

Salmon with Dashi Udon and Cucumber SaladFor the fall, I’m sprinkling in savory soup. We’ll keep the fish on Friday because it’s been such a huge hit. The Fall menu is: Wok, Sushi, Pasta, Soup and/or Salad and Fish.
Cook with Sauces
‘S’ is for Simple Menu
Written by
Recipe Tester for the Washington Post
Photographs and Styling by Helen Horton
Updated: September 23, 2014

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Nigiri Fruit Sushi

Don’t care for sushi?

What do you eat to celebrate New Year’s? We celebrate it with homemade ‘all you care to eat’ sushi. Our family lived in Japan for 5 ½ years where we all acquired a taste for the bite size pieces dipped in wasabi sauce. Lessons from locals taught us how to make a pretty wicked sushi roll. It might not be on your New Year’s menu; in fact there are sushi haters out there. But now you can have your sushi and love it too. No raw fish, no vegetables and no nori seaweed. Fruit Sushi is a triple play finger food served as a dessert or an appetizer. In the Japanese tradition of eating healthy desserts, the coconuty bites are light and delicate. It starts with a coconut rice base. Your eyes feast first on the top multi-colored fresh fruit crest. Who can resist the creamy custard sandwiched between rice and fruit? It’s delicate, tropical, colorful and healthy.


2010 AniversaRecipeCiabatta and Béchamel Eggs Benedict 


Recipe: Nigiri Fruit Sushi

Prep Time: 25 Minutes | Cook Time: 28 Minutes | Yield: 32 Pieces | Level: Moderate

The Sauce-Coconut Custard
3 Egg Yolks
2 Tbsp Sugar
1/2 cup Coconut Milk
1/2 cup Milk
1 pkg Gelatin Powder
1/4 cup cold Water
2 Tbsp shredded Coconut, minced
3/4 cup Heavy Cream, whipped

The Rest-Coconut Rice
1 1/2 cups Calrose Rice
2 cups Water
2 Tbsp Sugar
1 tsp Salt
5 oz Coconut Milk

The Rest-Fruit
Strawberries, thinly sliced
Kiwi, thinly sliced

Coconut Rice
1.  Using a strainer, rinse the rice to remove the milky coating. In a rice cooker, ;) combine the rice, 2 cups water, 2 tablespoons sugar, salt and steam until water is absorbed.

2.  Add coconut milk and stir. Spread evenly in a 9X13 dish lined with wax paper or parchment and set aside to cool.

Coconut Custard
3.  In the meantime, combine egg yolks with 2 tablespoons sugar in a small bowl. Set aside.

4.  In a medium sauce pan, heat both milks. Temper the egg yolk mixture by slowly stirring in the milk mixture then add the mixture back to the saucepan and cook on low until it thickens. Do not boil.

5.  Add coconut then set aside and cool to room temperature.

6.  Once the custard is cool, in another small bowl, combine the gelatin and 1/4 cup cold water. Stir to combine and dissolve. Mix into the custard.

7.  Fold in the whipped cream.

8.  Pour the custard over the coconut rice and spread evenly. Chill until set, 60-90 minutes or overnight.

Fruit Layer
9.  Slide chilled mixture onto a cutting board and trim away the rounded edges. Cut into approximately 32, 1”X 2 1/2” rectangles. Decorate with fruit slices and pieces.

;) Rice Cooker Substitute—Combine the rice, water, sugar and salt in a sauce pan and bring to a boil with the lid on. Reduce to simmer and continue cooking until water is absorbed, about 15 minutes. Do not remove the lid while cooking.

Dish Designer
• Use any desired fruit such as, pineapple, peaches, bananas or mandarin oranges.
• Cut in squares or cut in circles with a biscuit cutter.
• Place part of the rice in an 8X8 dish and using a sushi mat, make maki sushi by rolling the remaining rice in fruit leather or roll ups then slice. Decorate with small pieces of fruit.

Inspiration—Eating Light
sauces over under and through

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Sushi on the Fly

Easy Sushi on the Table in 30 Minutes

Roll It!

One of my best loved memories of living in Japan is eating sushi. Even better, learning how to make sushi so we could have it at home for holidays or just anytime. We make and roll beautiful sushi for family gatherings but one of my favorite ways to have it is casual style. All it takes is good sushi rice, a few mix-ins, nori and wasabi and you are on your way to a gourmet feast that’s also responsible eating.

Recipe: Sushi on the Fly

Prep Time: 20 Minutes | Cook Time: 30 Minutes | Yield: 4 servings | Level: Easy


  • 2 2/3 cups calrose rice
  • water
  • 3 inch square piece of kombu
  • 5 Tbsp rice vinegar, unseasoned
  • 5 Tbsp sugar
  • 4 tsp kosher salt
  • 10-12 medium cooked shrimp, sliced in 1/2-inch rounds
  • 1 ripe avocado, peeled and cut in 1/2-inch dice
  • 1/2 cucumber, peeled and cut in 1/2-inch dice
  • 6-8 sheets Nori
  • Wasabi Dipping Sauce
  • 6 Tbsp soy sauce
  • few Tbsp wasabi powder
  • few Tbsp water
  • pickled ginger

Special Equipment – Rice Cooker

1 Wash the rice until the water is clear. Add enough water to cover rice by 1 inch. Submerge konbu in the water laying on the top of the rice. Cook in rice cooker until done, about 20 minutes, then let set for 10 minutes without removing the lid. Shovel all the rice in a bowl.

2 Add the vinegar, sugar and salt to the rice. Taking care not to smash the kernels of rice, stir and cool the rice while mixing together. Have a cooking buddy fan the rice with a fan or magazine while mixing to speed the cooling process. When it is just barely warm it is cool enough.

Mix-ins and Roll-ins
3 Add the mix-ins – shrimp, avocado, and cucumber to the rice mixture.

4 Put some full sheets and half sheets of nori on a plate.

Wasabi Sauce
5 Mix the wasabi powder with some water. Start with a little and add more water to form a soft paste. Make it a little looser than you want it because it will tighten while it sets. Serve soy sauce and wasabi separately so guests can combine to their desired heat. Serve pickled ginger on the side.

6 Serve the nori, sushi rice, dipping sauce and pickled ginger. Scoop some prepared sushi rice on a piece of nori and roll up. Dip in sauce and enjoy.

Konbu – The secret to restaurant quality sushi rice is konbu. It is dried giant kelp and is sold in Asian food stores. It keeps for a long time so one package goes a long way.

Rice Washing – To wash rice, put it in the pot or rice cooker and using the kitchen faucet, cover the rice with water. Stir around with your hand to release the powder and then pour out the water. Repeat 4-7 times until the water is almost clear. This makes a big difference in the final quality of good sushi rice.

Rice Cooker Substitute – If you don’t have a rice cooker, put the rice, water and konbu in a medium sauce pan. Bring to a boil then reduce fire to simmer for 20 minutes. Don’t remove the lid during cooking and steaming.

Dish Designer

  • Exchange shrimp for crab meat or salmon
  • Exchange avocado for steamed pencil asparagus cut in 1-inch lengths
  • Exchange cucumber for diced scrambled eggs.
  • Exchange kombu for wakame.

Inspiration- ‘Japanese Cooking, A Simple Art’ by Shizuo Tsuji
Cook with Sauces
Written: by
Photographs: by Helen Horton
Updated: April 23, 2012

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