Friday, December 17, 2010

The Joy of Pickling

Another one of the memorable things that I did at the beginning of my lazy non-blogging break was pickling! I never really pickle anything before. I have made cucumber sonomo, a Japanese salad which involves vinegar, but other than that, no experience in pickling what-so-ever.

The first thing I want to pickle was red onion! Why? Not long ago, I had a delicious salad from Ad Hoc, which contains pickled red onions. I was craving for more after that. By the way, Ad Hoc's food never fails me! I looked at my Ad Hoc Cookbook for reference since afterall, I want it to taste just like it.

2 large red onions (about 1 1/4 pounds each)
1 1/2 cup red wine vinegar
3/4 cup granulated sugar

Instruction:  (make about 4 cups)
1. Cut off the top and bottom of each onion and cut lengthwise in half. Remove and discard the outer layer. 2. Slice each onions to 1/8 inch thick slices, following the natural lines on the outside of the onion.
3. Pack the onion slices in a 1 quart canning jar, reserve any slices that don't fit.
4. Combine the vinegar and sugar in a small saucepan and bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar.
5. Pour the hot vinegar mixture over the onions. Once the onions begin to wilt, you can add any remaining onion slices to the jar, gently pushing them down into the liquid to submerge them.
6. Let cool to room temperature, then cover and refridgerate for at least 24 hours for up to 1 month.

Try them on a bed of salad, they add a little crunch and sweetness to it. Very delicious!
They also taste great with salmon as I was mixing some onto the salmon also! Happy pickling!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Blue Velvet

I'm back! I haven't been blogging for awhile, but I have been eating and dinning as always. I need to catch up on my posts. Starting from this one...this was awhile ago, around September I believe, but hope it's still good and entertaining!

I was inspired by the Blue Velvet cake I had from Milk Cafe & Ice Creamery the last time I was in LA. With blueberries in seasons, I whipped up a batch of cupcakes almost like it.

Cupcake batter can be like a work of art, especially when food coloring is involved! I tried to use as minimal amount as possible because what goes in must come out, and it won't be as pretty as before.

I love blueberries. They are great snacks filled with anti-oxidants and vitamin C. I kind of over added blueberries in the cupcakes though. The texture of the cupcakes differ depends on how much you add. If you want mushy blueberries in every bite, then add more! If you want more cake, then add less.

Whipped up enough for my relatives who came over to visit.

Bluish green inside since I didn't add too much food coloring. It is still a blue velvet though!

Moist and sweet, but not overly sweet.