lunch

Hemp Crusted Chicken Tenders

Hemp Crusted Chicken Tenders

Today I'm sharing a really fun way to get hemp seeds into your families' diet. I am never one to turn down a chicken tender. Seasoned almond flour and hemp seeds are the perfect crust for baked chicken tenders - they turn out deliciously crisp on the outside and are great for dipping. Watch the video recipe below and let's get cookin :) 

Beef Enoki Rolls

Beef Enoki Rolls

Ooooh these are little rolls of magic! Lately I've become obsessed with enoki mushrooms. The bouncy texture, how easy they are to cook, and the way they soak up whatever flavors surround them. They are dirt cheap, and you can toss them into virtually any dish. Growing up, I think I've only really eaten enoki mushrooms when I've gone out to eat hot pot with friends. I always enjoyed them, but they were definitely an afterthought. (Hello, beef!) Recently, however, I've been eating enoki with everything - stir fries, soup, noodle dishes, even salads. Their sweet, mellow flavor is so yum. 

I was inspired by these Japanese Beef Enoki Rolls that I had as part of a lunch set the other day, and couldn't get enough of them. They are simple to prepare and the marinade is actually super versatile and can be used for cooking other protein. Beef Enoki Rolls are tender, juicy, and almost taste like beef jerky - a harmonious blend of soy, ginger, garlic, sake, and sesame oil create an incredibly savory marinade for the thinly sliced beef. Soaking the enoki mushrooms in warm, salted water allows them to soften and gain some flavor. Finally all you've got to do is wrap small bundles of mushrooms in the marinaded beef and pan fry. Searing the meat takes a few minutes, and then you're in flavor heaven. Let's get cookin!

Lazy Chicken Wings for One

Lazy Chicken Wings for One

I'm going to let you in on one of my tried and true 'recipes', which is totally just a little trick I've been doing since high school whenever I'm really lazy and REALLY hungry. I love chicken wings - and here in Hong Kong, grocery stores sell bags of frozen mid-joint chicken wings. These are my favs - don't get me wrong, I like drumsticks too, but I really love just the wings. In my little HK kitchen, I don't have a proper oven (just a toaster oven). This method of cooking chicken wings on the stove-top is quick, fail-proof, and super flavorful. 

Sometimes you don't have time to go grocery shopping, but you can bet that there'll be some frozen chicken wings in your freezer. You can make these wings with virtually any sauce or marinade that you have in the kitchen, making this the perfect lazy meal! There are simply 2 steps, and 3 ingredients. Simmer the chicken in chicken broth until they're nice and plump (my trick to knowing when they're finished is when the blood clots come out :) and then tossing them in sauce in a skillet. 

Eggplant Pizza

Eggplant Pizza

Eggplant pizza is the easiest way to satisfy your pizza cravings when you're trying to cut down on carbs! Using fresh eggplant as a "pizza crust" is a quick and tasty substitute; not to mention how cute they are!! Pizza is such a fun, hands-on meal to make with kids, and what better way to get some extra veggies into your families' diets than to use eggplant slices instead of dough :) 

Mango Avocado Quinoa Salad with Lime Vinaigrette

Mango Avocado Quinoa Salad with Lime Vinaigrette

I'm addicteddddd to the combo of sweet mango and creamy avocado!! Mangoes have been ridiculously cheap and available lately and it's been such a fun addition to my meals. This recipe is one of my favorite flavor combos! I love using avocados to sub for dressing or other fats. The mixture of ripe mango and avocado with the awesome texture of quinoa is so delicious. Use the base of this recipe as inspiration for other meals! I routinely mix mango, avo, and quinoa with all my salads, and top them with baked fish. Squeeze a whole bunch of lemon juice over top, or serve it with the lime vinaigrette I'm showing you today! :)

These flavors are vibrant. Tossing mango and avocado together brings out all the juiciness of the fruit, and the creamy avocado coats all the other ingredients. Adding in a bit of red onion for bite, cilantro for brightness, and tart cherry tomatoes (or try sweet strawberries!) makes this salad incredibly flavorful and hearty. This would be great with grilled chicken, fish, or even as a dip with chips :) This salad's so easy. Chop up all the ingredients and toss em together. Let's get cookin!

Stuffed Baby Bok Choy Cups

Stuffed Baby Bok Choy Cups

Living in Hong Kong is a constant foodie fest. There are so many amazing things to eat and try and sometimes it gets overwhelming. I've been trying my best to cook at home more often (even though eating out is so much more convenient in HK!) But it has really made a change in my energy levels and overall well-being. It's often hard to avoid carbs here, but today I have a really fun recipe that is the perfect addition to your low-carb list! These babies are like eating flavorful dumplings...without the guilt!

Spring Salmon, Asparagus, and Orzo Salad with Lemon-Dill Vinaigrette

Spring Salmon, Asparagus, and Orzo Salad with Lemon-Dill Vinaigrette

Pasta salad is perfect for Springtime! This recipe is an easy and delicious way to stretch out fresh seafood. Tender orzo pasta, roasted salmon, cherry tomatoes, asparagus, and salty feta are tossed with a zesty citrus dressing for a beautifully hearty salad. There's something about the texture of orzo pasta that makes me crave it all the time! This Spring salad is great for emptying the fridge - don't have asparagus? Use peas, spinach, or beans! Sub shrimp for salmon or leftover chicken and feel free to use Parmesan instead of Feta :) If you're cutting carbs, toss all these ingredients with crispy Romaine or kale. 

Hiyashi Chuka (Cold Ramen)

Hiyashi Chuka (Cold Ramen)

This dish is a great way to cool down in the Spring/Summer! Hiyashi Chuka can be made with a variety of toppings, but popular ones include: pickled ginger, cucumbers, ham, shrimp, strips of egg crepes, imitation crab, nori strips, wakame seaweed, and sesame seeds. Some other great ideas are carrots, shredded steamed chicken, and tomatoes! The options are endless, and the dressing is so yummy that it'll pull any combination together. This recipe is super simple - shred and julienne all your toppings, whisk up the dressing, and toss the chilled noodles together. You know how certain foods taste even better when eaten cold? The flavors of the sesame, soy, and rice vinegar dressing bring all the toppings to life :) Let's get cookin!

Pesto Caprese Grilled Cheese

Pesto Caprese Grilled Cheese

The yummiest twist on the classic grilled cheese - Pesto Caprese Grilled Cheese! Caprese-anything is already delicious and really hard for me to resist, so I put that combo in between two slices of crisp, rustic bread? Perfect for Spring. I have a great toaster oven in my apartment and grilled cheese sandwiches have never been easier :) Hot, crisp edges and gooey cheese in minutes. Add a smear of pesto for an added kick - or make it your own and add sundried tomatoes, some spice, a drizzle of balsamic, or even an egg :) This is an easy one, let's get cookin!

Poached Salmon with Sesame Ginger Quinoa

Poached Salmon with Sesame Ginger Quinoa

This combo is so yummy! The tiny quinoa pops in your mouth, and the gentle flavors of sesame and ginger are perfect with the moist, flakey salmon. The sauce brings just enough salt and acid to the protein, and the quinoa soaks it all up. What I love about dishes like these is learning new techniques. Now you can poach other fish, or incorporate quinoa into your meals! :)