Home Kitchen Recipe | Steamed Cream Crackers Kuih

I have searching for an English word to depict ‘kuih’ but it comes to no conclusion. Biscuit or cookies are usually referring to baked desserts or snacks. Whilst cake does not describe ‘kuih’ either though the closest to be. Pastry is far from right, and typically using wheat. Indeed there is no terminology that is similar, to accurately describe ‘kuih’. After I did some googling, I am so glad that kuih is recognized by its own name! Proud of KUIH indeed!

Cream cracker kuihs
Cream cracker kuihs

What I am going to introduce today is ‘Steamed Salty Cream Crackers Kuih’. The first time I tasted this kuih was when we had picnic at McKinney Falls State Park months ago. Thanks to my friend J for steaming some Salty Cream Crackers Kuih for us as well as preparing lots of other sumptuous food! On our way home, J shared the recipe with me and I did my first experiment on the following week.

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Austin Tan My Vietnamese Noodle Soup and Pho Restaurant

Operating since 15 years ago, Tan My Vietnamese Restaurant is a little gem shadowed by Target along US Hwy 183. Occupying the corner unit, Tan My is tucked away in a strip of mall at the intersection of Payton Gin and Ohlen Roads. On our first exploration to Tan My, it was a bit of effort. But with a little patience and endurance, we were happy that we found a great place for Pho and Bun Bo Hue!

Tan My behind Target along US Hwy 183
Tan My behind Target along US Hwy 183

Two days later we were back again, this time with a bigger crowd in two cars. More than half of us went for Bun Bo Hue after my brief introduction about this unique yet not-so popular Vietnamese noodle. Originated from Central Vietnamese, Bun Bo Hue can be described as the wild version of pho. It is  predominantly flavored by lemon grass, chili and shrimp paste compares to Pho, which is mainly from star anise, cinnamon and cloves. The broth is usually prepared from long simmered beef/pork bones. Served with round rice noodle (bun), the meat accompaniments are brisket (beef), pig knuckles and cubes of pig blood. If you are someone who loves a mixed flavor of spicy-tangy, then Bun Bo Hue is the perfect match for you. Otherwise, you will be sweating and drinking plenty of water (milk is better) to cure.
The wild version of Pho - Bun Bo Hue
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Home Kitchen Recipe | Crepes – Chinese Pancakes

Crepes are always a good way for me to move our over-stock all-purpose flour. We love sweet crepes with ice-cream for breakfast. Unlike a typical pancake which is thicker, crepes are thinner in nature and go perfectly well with peanut butter, fruits or jams (preserves) as well.

Similar to Chinese pancake, crepes take a short prep time, ready within minutes. Pan-frying crepe is simple with minimal utensils and almost no mess on the stove.

Crepes (Chinese pancake) with almond ice-cream, peaches, apples and grapes
Crepes (Chinese pancake) with almond ice-cream, peaches, apples and grapes

A blend of all-purpose flour, egg, milk, butter and sugar, crepes are healthy combo of carbohydrate, fat
and protein to kick start your day!
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Austin Chinatown Center | Korean Grill – Ssambap and Bulgogi

Austin seldom disappoints my family whenever we are looking for a delectable Asian cuisine. From the most familiar on the list namely Chinese or Vietnamese to the less common kinds like Thai, Japanese or Korean, I always practice probing my friends whom had been there or reading others’ reviews before heading to the restaurant. As a result, we usually end up with an ambitious meal, leave with smiling faces and happy stomachs!

A huge platter of Kimchi pancake
A huge platter of Kimchi pancake

Located at Austin Chinatown Center of N. Lamar Blvd, the plain facade of Korean Grill next to TC Noodle Restaurant adopts simplicity for its interior as well. The dining area appears spacious and spread out into the left wing as one enters.
A variety of banchan (Korean side dishes) in small saucers
My Significant Other and I dated a friend for lunch and he happened to arrive earlier. We promptly joined him and checked out the menu. Since it was our first time, we decided to go for a family-style so that everyone could try a fair bit of everything. In a nice array of entree choices, the most notable is House Specials and the top on the list is Ssambob (쌈밥). Ssambob or at times written as Ssambap, is a Korean version of taco. Typically prepared with bulgogi (BBQ meats/seafood) or rice and a little ssamjang sauce to be laid on a leaf, then wrap before it goes into mouth. I love plenty of vegetables to go with meats so I suggested Ssambob for our entree. In addition to that, our waitstaff recommended Kimchi pancake for appetizer and all of us gamed for it.
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Austin Japanese Cuisine | Midori Sushi – Fried Sushi and Sashimi

Growing up in Asia, Japanese is a cuisine that I am quite familiar with. Japanese culinary practice healthy cooking without much oil and emphasizing on freshness of the ingredients in addition to heavy utilization of shrimps/fish compares to meats. That perhaps justifies for a pricey Japanese meal. Yet, there is a always a good bargain if one knows where and goes on the right timing.
A platter of Phoenix and Rock & Rolls
Upon hearing good review about the food at Midori Sushi from my Significant Other, I decided to gather a group of friends for lunch there. On weekdays, Midori offers a list of Bento or lunch box for less than $10. Each set is served with a chunk of protein (meat/fish/shrimp), house roll, sushi, side dishes besides a bowl of miso soup and house salad as starters. These bento sets are indeed very attractive if you are into a bit of everything. Alternatively, sushi/sashimi combo is also a value pick that treats you with same starters as the bento set.
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Home Kitchen Recipe | Miso Soup with Tofu, Potato and Chicken

Whenever I run out of idea to prepare broth or soup, I always count on my favorite Miso paste. A quick and easy fix. Within minutes, the broth can be prepared and ready to take the center stage on dining table. 

The most common miso soup is plain with soft tofu but I usually prefer to add some meats such as bite sizes of pork or chicken unless I am preparing for a vegan, then this is omitted. Alternatively, you may add other vegetables including radish, fresh mushroom, seaweed or zucchini.

Easy fix broth - Miso soup with chicken and tofu (bean curd)
Easy fix broth – Miso soup with chicken and tofu (bean curd)

Ready to start?
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Austin Zilker Park Hillside Theater | Annie – 2010 Summer Free Musical Show

On a hill slope overlooking an outdoor theater with home blankets on the green grass offers casual seating, this is the adventure of watching summer musical show at Zilker Park. Over 52 years, this is the Austin’s tradition of presenting live musical show to the folks of Central Texas every summer!

2010 celebrates 52nd year of Annual Zilker Musical in Austin
2010 celebrates 52nd year of Annual Zilker Musical in Austin

This year, Zilker Theater Production presents you ‘Annie’. Professional, fun and well-choreographed, Annie is a highly entertaining play by an energetic team. Began on last weekend 9 July, Annie runs through 14 August 2010, so plan your weekends and make sure you do not miss this brilliant piece!
Blanket adventure
Based on the book written by Thomas Meehan, Annie is an award winning Broadway musical. Reproduced with permission, it takes the center stage on Zilker Hillside Theater this summer and draws huge crowd as early as 6 pm.

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Home Kitchen Recipe | Garlic Fried Rice – Japanese Style

Fried rice is loved by most of us. Irresistible fragrance especially when it is served straight from the frying wok! In Penang, there are countless variations of fried rice include ‘Nasi Goreng Kampung’ (Village-style fried rice), Chinese Fried Rice, Thai Fried Rice, Salted Fish Fried Rice, Spare-ribs Fried Rice, Pattaya Fried Rice and the list goes on.

Fried Garlic Rice
Fried Garlic Rice

Have you heard of Garlic Fried Rice then? We first discovered about Garlic Fried Rice when dining at a Japanese restaurant in Malaysia ages ago. Since then, my Significant Other usually asks for a bowl of garlic fried rice whenever we dine at Japanese restaurant. The appeal is from the fragrance of deep-fried garlic minces that seems to be the comfort food for my SO! Garlic fried rice is not a complicated dish. The basic ingredients are Japanese steamed rice, tonnes of garlic minces, egg, spring onion and of course their secret sauces.  

Whenever lazy bone creeps into me, I usually escape with garlic fried rice. Easy, simple and rewarding as it
is usually gone in a short while! Extremely hard to resist. Ready to check out how I do it?
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Corpus Christi Waterfront Restaurant | Docs Seafood and Steaks

If you ever thought of dining under a bridge, fanning by the sea breeze, overlooking green patches blended with shallow water and flying sea gulls on the sky amidst of a lagoon, then Doc’s Seafood & Steaks Restaurant is the place for you.

The facade of Doc's Seafood and Steak
The facade of Doc’s Seafood and Steak

On Laguna Madre by the JF Kennedy Causeway, Doc’s Seafood & Steaks Restaurant stands on a small piece of land under the bridge, offers all the above mentioned. Less than 30-minute drive from Corpus Christi downtown, Doc’s location is special. It presents an extraordinary atmosphere to dine with beautiful sunset on a good day.
Blue water and lush green of Laguna Madre
New England seafood chowder
We were introduced to Doc’s by chance when we traveled across Laguna Madre via JF Kennedy Causeway during our trip to Mustang Island. From our moving vehicle on the bridge, we noticed about Doc’s. A cozy spot that lies beneath us, encircled by a mesmerizing water land. Indeed inviting. In fact, the breathtaking sight attracted us to drive there for lunch on the following day before returning to Austin. Moreover, we had vowed not to leave Corpus Christi without a good meal of fresh seafood!

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Texas Corpus Christi | USS Lexington – Museum on the Bay

Floating by the shore of Corpus Christi Bay, USS Lexington is a vintage aircraft carrier built during World War II for the United States Navy. Originally, the ship was called Cabot but later renamed to USS Lexington in honor of the Revolutionary War Battle of Lexington. As the fifth ship that bear the name, Lexington was commissioned in February 1943 and served extensively during World War II (WWII).

USS Lexington welcomes you on board
USS Lexington welcomes you on board

After WWII, she was modernized and her second career took off as an attack carrier (CVA), then as an antisubmarine carrier (CVS) and later as a training carrier (CVT) which made her spending almost three decades in east coast of United States. Bearing the famous nicknames of ‘The Blue Ghost’ or ‘Lady Lex’, Lexington was decommissioned in 1991 and retired as a museum ship based in Corpus Christi.
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