• Kimchi Fried Rice with Bacon and Mushrooms

    I’M HERE! I’M HERE AND I’M READY TO COOK KIMCHI FRIED RICE! I would first like to apologize for this extended hiatus, my weekends have been absolutely jam packed and it’s been out! of! control! I ordered Seamless for dinner 3 times last week!! Three!! Unacceptable. So, this weekend, after meeting my baking hero Claire Saffitz (more on that later), I was fully in a Bon Appetit mood. When I moved, I never got around to bringing my stack of cookbooks with me, so the last time I went home, I grabbed one from the stack, Where Cooking Begins, by Carla Lalli Music. I love this cookbook specifically because of how versatile it is. This book not only contains recipes, but also ways to “spin” each one, PLUS detailed pages of some basic cooking techniques. So you see why, if I had to grab one book, it’s this one.

    Me trying to keep my cool in front of my idol NDB

    Before we get into this weeks recipe, let’s quick re-cap the last few weeks since I’ve been here. First, I went to Seattle! And ooooooh I loved it. My sister and I stayed with my brother, who recently moved there, and wow what a wonderful city! I couldn’t get over how perfectly Fall it felt, the trees were changing, it was nice and chilly, and we ate so much food. Highlights include: a hike up Rattlesnake Ledge (I am horribly out of shape), the Chihuly Glass Museum, and an entire bar dedicated to PIE and PIE THEMED DRINKS! Insanity. Then, this weekend, I attended a cake decorating class with none other than Claire Saffitz of BA’s “Gourmet Makes” and I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t incredibly starstruck. She is so sweet and talented and told me my cake was perfect and I’m still emotional. Also she signed a pastry brush for me and it will hang in every kitchen I ever have, the end.

    Okay so now that we’ve covered what I’ve been up to, let’s talk food. So on Sunday, after sleeping until noon and doing not much besides watching Parks and Rec on the couch (it was raining, what else could I do?) I cracked open Carla’s book and found this life changing kimchi fried rice recipe. I am a huge fan of having eggs for dinner, so any time I find a recipe that includes that, I’m already interested. What’s more, this recipe has crispy bacon, mushrooms cooked in said bacon, and KIMCHI. It’s a perfect combination of salty, tangy, spicy, fresh and I want to eat it forever. I’m getting too excited, let’s start.

    But of course, before we do, here are 5 things to be happy about today!
    ONE. Your at-home comfy clothes.
    TWO. Doing a week’s worth of grocery shopping in one day.
    THREE. A basket full of blankets in your living room.
    FOUR. Visiting a new city.
    FIVE. “I’m on vacation” as an attitude for decision making.

    Let’s cook!!

    Ingredients

    7 Tbs vegetable oil
    4 strips bacon, cut crosswise into ¾ inch pieces
    8oz. mushrooms, washed, stems removed, and caps torn
    2 cups cooked brown rice
    1 cup kimchi, liquid reserved and roughly chopped
    Handful of chopped cilantro
    2 eggs
    Salt and pepper
    Sesame oil, hot sauce, for serving

    Steps

    ONE. In a large skillet, heat a tablespoon of vegetable oil until warm, then add the bacon. Cook for about 6 minutes, or until the bacon is crispy and the fat is rendered. Scoop out the bacon with a slotted spoon and transfer to a plate.

    TWO. In the same pan, add the mushrooms to the bacon fat, seasoning with salt. Cook undisturbed for approximately 5 minutes, until some liquid is released and they get slightly browned. Stir with a wooden spoon and cook for another 2 minutes, then transfer to the same plate as your bacon.

    THREE. Add another tablespoon of oil to the same pan, then add your cooked rice, allowing to heat for 2 minutes undisturbed. Toss with a wooden spoon and then cook for another 2 minutes, until the rice is warmed and a little crisp, but not dried out. If you need, more oil can be added during this process.

    FOUR. Add the kimchi to the rice, and cook for about 1 minute. Off the heat, add back the mushrooms and the bacon, plus the reserved kimchi juice and cilantro. Mix to combine and transfer to a serving platter.

    FIVE. In the skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of oil over medium high, and add the two eggs, seasoning with salt and pepper. Cook until the eggs whites are set, but the yolks remain runny, for proper yolk-breaking satisfaction. Spoon a generous portion of the rice onto eat plate, then top with an egg and a drizzle of sesame oil and/ or hot sauce.

    Yum!! Xoxoxoxox

    Want more dinners? Look here, here, here, and here!

  • Apple Cinnamon Coffee Cake Biscuits

    Well well well, another week into September, and I’m still alarmed at how fast this year is moving. Not so alarmed, however, that I didn’t leap wholeheartedly into Fall baking before the official start of the season. As far as I’m concerned, once September hits, it’s Fall. And what comprises fall baking? Apples! Cinnamon! Biscuits! Whatever your heart desires! This week’s recipe has a little bit of everything, some brown sugar cinnamon sauteed apples and some brown butter streusel, folded all cozy into a biscuit dough and slathered with cinnamon glaze. I give you, Apple Cinnamon Coffee Cake Biscuits.

    I went on my first ever grown-up business trip this past week, which was a huge win for me since thinking about the airport usually strikes fear in my heart. It turned out to be really fun and interesting, and I feel like a certified adult now. I then ended up going back to my parent’s house for the weekend, and I knew I had to take advantage of having a big kitchen again. So, I got my coffee and took a quick walk around my favorite garden, and then got to work.

    A quick note to all, I know that my posts as of late have been not as consistent as usual, please know that I am trying my best, but it’s tough to photograph the things I make when we’re still eating off of paper plates. Rest assured things will be back to normal so soon, I am just settling in!

    Before we get started, here are 5 things to be happy about:
    ONE. Coming home from a long day, lighting a candle, and getting cozy.
    TWO. Halloween decorations.
    THREE. When your alarm goes off but then you remember that it’s Saturday.
    FOUR. Making plans for the weekend to motivate you through the work week.
    FIVE. Doing the “big grocery shop” late on a Sunday evening.

    Inspired in part by recipes from here and here.

    Apple Cinnamon Coffee Cake Biscuits

    All of the best parts of baking for fall, folded into one little biscuit and doused in cinnamon glaze. Apples! Cinnamon! Brown sugar! Streusel! Let's bake!
    Prep Time1 hr
    Cook Time20 mins
    Total Time1 hr 20 mins
    Course: Breakfast, Dessert
    Keyword: apple, biscuits, cinnamon, coffee cake, fall baking
    Servings: 8 biscuits

    Ingredients

    Cinnamon Apples

    • 2 large baking apples; peeled and thinly-sliced
    • 2 Tbsp butter
    • 1 tsp cinnamon
    • 2 Tbsp brown sugar
    • Pinch of salt

    Brown Butter Streusel

    • 1 stick butter
    • 1 cup + 2 Tbsp flour
    • ½ cup white sugar
    • 3 Tbsp brown sugar
    • Pinch of salt
    • 1 tsp cinnamon

    Biscuit Dough

    • 3 cups flour
    • ¼ cup brown sugar
    • tsp baking powder
    • 1 tsp salt
    • ¾ cup butter; cold and grated on a box grater
    • cup whole milk; plus more for brushing
    • Raw sugar; for sprinkling

    Cinnamon Glaze

    • ½ cup heavy cream
    • 3 cups powdered sugar
    • 2 tsp cinnamon
    • 1 tsp vanilla extract

    Instructions

    Cinnamon Apples

    • Place the apples, butter, cinnamon, brown sugar, and salt in a large saucepan over medium heat. Stir to combine all the ingredients until the butter melts completely. Allow the apples to cool in a bowl while you prepare the rest of the parts.

    Brown Butter Streusel

    • In the same pan as before, melt the stick of butter over medium heat, stirring frequently, until the butter becomes nutty and fragrant and golden brown.
    • In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, white and brown sugars, salt, and cinnamon. Drizzle the brown butter over the flour mixture, and stir until it comes together in crumbles. Cool the streusel in the fridge while you make the dough.

    Biscuit Dough

    • Preheat your oven to 400°F. In a large bowl, combine the flour, brown sugar, baking powder, and salt. Add in the grated butter and mix with your hands until it's about pea-sized and crumbly. Add a cup of the milk and stir until a dough begins to form, adding the remaining ¼ cup as necessary- you may not need all of it!
    • Dump the dough into a floured surface and work it gently with your hands into one cohesive ball. Roll out into a rough 9" x 13" rectangle, making sure nothing is sticking.
    • Spread the apples into an even layer on half of the dough, and then add a layer of the streusel on top. Fold the other half of the dough on top of the filling and gently seal the edges so that nothing falls out while you cut the biscuits.
    • Using a sharp knife or bench scraper, cut the dough into 8 biscuits. Carefully transfer each biscuit to a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Brush the tops with milk and sprinkle generously with the raw sugar.
    • Bake for 20-22 minutes, until the tops are golden brown and crisp. Allow to cool slightly before glazing and serving.

    Cinnamon Glaze

    • In a bowl, whisk together all the glaze ingredients until a thick but pour-able glaze forms, adding more heavy cream or powdered sugar as necessary until the desired consistency is reached. Cover each biscuit with a generous amount of glaze and enjoy!!

    Into more scones and biscuits? Look here, here, and here!

  • Roasted Rhubarb Sandwich Scones with Vanilla Bean Glaze

    TODAY’S THE DAY!! At long last, I bring you our first rhubarb recipe of the season. I know you’re all just as excited as I am right???? Even if you’re not, once you see what’s in store you won’t be able to resist and that’s a fact. Let’s set the scene, shall we? It all started sometime last year, I was perusing my Instagram explore page as one does, and I came across this recipe. Except, as often happens, it was saved and then promptly forgotten about and it was soon buried under all the other recipes I save on a daily basis.

    Cut to two weeks ago, I am once again glued to my Instagram, and what do I see? The very same picture, except now I come to realize that the recipe is from one of my absolute FAVORITE blogs, A Cozy Kitchen! It was meant to be, and I simply had to try them out this time.

    This weekend I watched my sisters while my parents were away, and apart from getting up ungodly early on Saturday to take them to their SATs, I had a lot of free time to mess around with recipes I’d been saving. Obviously I started with this one, and oh boy did we start the weekend off right. The sweet-but-sour roasted rhubarb is such a surprise when sandwiched between a buttery scone dough, and the vanilla bean glaze is DECADENT. The recipe was so perfect that I changed very little, my only wish is that it made three times as many so I could eat these for breakfast forever.

    And how did the rest of the weekend go you ask? Well, I was determined to finally conquer my fear of grocery store seafood counters (is that a thing?), so I found a New York Times recipe for Seared Scallop Pasta with Cherry Tomatoes that seemed perfect. HA. The moment I began to sear my scallops, the ENTIRE house soon filled with smoke. I’m talking fire alarms on both floors, and a smokey haze within 5 minutes. Thank god I had my sisters on hand to open every window in the house and turn on every fan, but I cannot tell what happened! Some comments said don’t use a cast iron skillet, others said you should only use a cast iron skillet (????). I always thought that olive oil smokes easily on high heat, but the recipe requested it!

    Will I try it again? Who’s to say. Just know that if I do, it’s on the grill stovetop outside because I’m sure as hell not going through THAT mess a second time, I’m pretty sure the house will smell like scallops for weeks.

    But anyway, now that that’s settled, here are 5 things to be happy about today:
    ONE. Comfortable silence.
    TWO. Being the only person awake and having the house to yourself for a while.
    THREE. Treating yourself to a face mask.
    FOUR. A house full of plants.
    FIVE. Turning up the air conditioner so that you can keep using a blanket, even in the summer.

    Let’s bake!!

    Roasted Rhubarb Sandwich Scones with Vanilla Bean Glaze

    The perfect combination of rich vanilla and tart rhubarb, these scones prove that there's more to rhubarb than strawberry rhubarb pie!
    Prep Time30 mins
    Cook Time25 mins
    Inactive Time20 mins
    Total Time1 hr 15 mins
    Course: Breakfast, Dessert, Snack
    Keyword: breakfast, dessert, glaze, rhubarb, scone, vanilla bean
    Servings: 6 scones

    Ingredients

    Roasted Rhubarb

    • 2 cups diced rhubarb
    • ¼ cup white sugar
    • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
    • 1 tsp vanilla bean paste
    • zest of ½ a lemon

    Scone Dough

    • 3 cups all-purpose flour
    • 3 Tbsp white sugar
    • 1 tsp baking soda
    • ½ tsp kosher salt
    • 4 Tbsp unsalted butter cold
    • 1 cup buttermilk plus more for brushing on top

    Vanilla Bean Glaze

    • cups powdered sugar
    • 5 to 6 Tbsp heavy cream
    • 1 tsp vanilla bean paste
    • pinch of salt

    Instructions

    Roasted Rhubarb Steps

    • Preheat your oven to 425°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In a large bowl, toss together the rhubarb, sugar, cinnamon, vanilla bean, and lemon zest until all the rhubarb is coated.
    • Pour onto the prepared pan and bake for 10 to 12 minutes, until the rhubarb is soft and juicy. Set aside to cool.

    Scone Dough Steps

    • In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Using a box grater, grate the cold butter onto a cutting board or plate and add to the flour mixture. Freeze for 5 minutes.
    • Remove the bowl from the freezer and toss the butter pieces with the flour so that they're spread uniformly. Press the butter into the flour with your fingers until it's mixed throughout.
    • Create a well in the center of the flour mixture and pour in the buttermilk. Mix with a rubber spatula or wooden spoon until the dough begins to hold together, then dump onto a lightly floured surface. Knead gently until the dough is fully uniform (about 4 or 5 times, it's important not to overwork this or it will get tough).
    • Press or roll the dough into a ¼" thick rectangle, with one long end closest to you (so it folds hot dog style rather than hamburger style if you know what I mean). Spoon the rhubarb filling onto the front half of the dough, then carefully fold the other half of the dough over the rhubarb filling. Trim the edges so that they're neat and even.
    • Using a sharp knife or bench scraper, cut the dough into 6 or 7 large scones and transfer them to your prepared sheet pan. Place the entire pan in the freezer for 15 minutes, while your oven preheats to 400°F.
    • Remove the tray from the freezer, brush the scones with some extra buttermilk and sprinkle with demarara sugar (optional). Bake the scones for 12 to 15 minutes, until the tops are golden brown and risen. Allow to cool for at least 20 minutes before glazing.

    Vanilla Bean Glaze Steps

    • In a small bowl, whisk together the powdered sugar, heavy cream, vanilla bean paste, and pinch of salt. Feel free to adjust as you see fit, adding more powdered sugar or heavy cream as necessary. The glaze should be thicker than a normal glaze, just barely pourable so that when you spoon it over a slightly warm scone, it spreads as it melts.

    Notes

    If you don’t have vanilla bean paste, do not fret! Regular vanilla can be substituted just as easily here, as can a whole scraped vanilla bean. Additionally, if rhubarb isn’t your thing, this recipe could just as easily be done with strawberries or blueberries, just adjust the sugar level and baking time as necessary. YUM! xoxoxoxoxo

    Looking for more rhubarb recipes?? Look no further than here, here, and here! Happy baking!