Pressure Cooker Japanese Chicken Curry

After watching Nami’s YouTube videos from Just One Cookbook, I’m inspired by her easy Japanese cooking especially if it involves pressure cooker. Nowsadays, my little monkey clings on to me like a kola bear. All cooking has to be done via pressure cooker, otherwise, there won’t be any home-cooked dinner served in our household.

Japanese curry is something I usually ordered in Japanese restaurant. I have the assumption that it will takes alot of time and efforts to make it. After watching her video, I realized it is such a breeze. So I decided to pick up the challenge.

Here’s the recipe which I have adjusted to my family preference:

Ingredients
  • 3 onions
  • carrots
  • 3 russet potatoes
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 tsp ginger
  • lb boneless skinless chicken thighs (1½ lb = 680 g)
  • Pink himalayan salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 Tbsp neutral flavor oil (vegetable, canola, etc)
  • 3 cups low sodium package chicken stock (3 cups = 720 ml)
  • 1 package Japanese curry roux (I use 1/2 packet of mild and 1/2 packet of hot)
  • 1 Tbsp ketchup
  • 1/2 Tbsp soy sauce
  • Pickled ginger
Instructions
  1. Gather all the ingredients.

  2. Cut the onion in half and cut the halves into 5 wedges.
  3. Peel the carrot and cut into bite sizes. I use Japanese cutting technique called “Rangiri”. Cut the carrot diagonally while rotating it a quarter between cuts. This not only results in an attractive shape that is good for stews and simmered dishes, but also gives the pieces bigger surface space to absorb seasonings quicker.
  4. Peel the potatoes and cut into quarters. Soak in water to remove starch.
  5. Mince the garlic and grate ginger.
  6. Cut the meat into bite size pieces (I use Japanese cutting technique “Sogigiri”). Season with pink himalayan salt and freshly ground black pepper.
  7. Press the “Sauté” button on your Instant Pot and heat 1 Tbsp. vegetable oil.
  8. When the pot is hot, add the onion, minced garlic and ginger.
  9. Add the chicken to the pot and coat with oil.
  10. Add carrot and potato to the pot and mix well.
  11. Add 3 cups (720 ml) chicken broth and curry roux. Use spatula to push down some ingredients but keep the curry roux blocks on top. If you use homemade roux, add it after pressure cooking is done.  Homemade roux is more runny and it goes to the bottom of pot easily and can burn while cooking.
  12. Cover and lock the lid. Make sure the steam release handle points at “sealing” and not “venting”. Press the “Keep Warm/Cancel” button on the Instant Pot to stop sauté. Press the “meat/Stew” button to switch to the pressure cooking mode. Press “minus” button to change the cooking time to 15 minutes.
  13. If you’re using a stove-top pressure cooker, you won’t have the buttons to press. Just cook on high heat until high pressure is reached. Then reduce the heat to low but maintain high pressure for about 15 minutes.
  14. When it is finished cooking, the Instant Pot will switch automatically to a “Keep Warm” mode. Slide the steam release handle to the “Venting” position to let out steam until the float valve drops down, OR let the pressure release naturally (takes about 15 mins).
  15. Unlock the lid and add 1 Tbsp ketchup and 1/2 Tbsp soy sauce. Mix well and make sure all the curry roux has been dissolved. Transfer to a serving dish. Garnish with pickled ginger.

 

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Pressure Cooker Italian Wedding Soup

Ever since I had decided to invest in this pressure cooker, it has saved me quite a bit of time to cook. I did not have to worry about watching the stove while cooking. I can just throw in all the ingredients, set the pressure cooker to work and proceed to play with my boy with a peace of mind.

My little monkey is sick and clinging on to me like a kola bear. So I need something really quick and easy for dinner tonight. I decided to make soup and pulled out my pressure cooker to make Italian Wedding Soup. I like it that it is simple, healthy and full of flavor and most importantly my picky husband loves it. 

I got this recipe from The Typical Mom and it only takes 4 mins to cook once the pressure cooker is heated up. I like to double the recipe so I get to freeze some portions for days where I do not have time to cook or when I do not feel like and like some soup. 

Ingredients:

  • 12 meatballs (I use store bought instead of making my own meatballs)
  • 40oz chicken broth (I use packaged low sodium chicken broth from the stores)
  • 1 onion
  • 2 large carrots or more, sliced (Base on your preference)
  • 2 cups of sliced celery
  • 4 cups of baby spinach (We prefer lots of baby spinach in our soup. You can use escarole if you prefer)
  • 1/2 cup of pastini 
  • Salt and pepper (to taste)

Instructions:

  1. Set your pressure cooker to sauté mode, add 2-3 tbsp of olive oil into the pot.
  2. Add meatballs and brown the outside, when done, add onions.
  3. Sauté onions until it’s a little translucent and/or you can smell the onions.
  4. Add in sliced carrots and carrots, sauté for 2-3 mins.
  5. Pour in chicken stock and add pastini.
  6. Close lid and steam valve on your pressure cooker.
  7. Cancel sauté mode, set on manual, high pressure for 4 mins.
  8. Once done, release steam valve slowly. Hit cancel and proceed to open the lid carefully.
  9. Stir in the baby spinach, and set to sauté mode and let the soup cook for couple mins and the baby spinach wilt.
  10. Add salt and pepper to taste and you are ready to serve.

Vietnamese Summer Rolls

Hubby just came back from vacation last Saturday after spending a week in Las Vegas and Grand Canyon with my cousin brother. They were both sick and tired of eating burgers and sandwiches. My cousin brother was in Chicago for one week conference and then flew to Vegas to meet up with my hubby. He was so happy that his vacation is over so he could fly home to have his Asian food like wanton mee, economical bee hoon, prawn noodles, etc for his meals.

So after all the feasting hubby had while on vacation, I decided to make healthy dinner tonight. This is my first time making summer rolls and I was not sure if I could handle it especially the rice paper wraps. I struggled for quite awhile trying to wrap and roll with the wet and sticky rice paper.

Here’s the final results… did not look as pretty as those made in restaurants but at least in hubby’s eyes, it’s presentable and most importantly edible, healthy and yummy especially when you  eat it with peanut sauce and/or sweet chili sauce.

I did not have the time to make the peanut sauce so I used the ready made sauce which I picked up from Wegmans’ grocery store. You can also find the peanut sauce in Asian grocery store or even on Amazon.

After finishing our dinner, I decided to make more for tomorrow’s lunch. The more rolls I make, the better I get. It is still not as pretty as those from the restaurants but getting a little prettier. It is all about practice practice practice…

I usedthe original recipe from watchwhatueat as my reference and modified it for my own consumption 🙂

Ingredients:

  • 10-12 cocktail shrimps
  • 1 cucumber cut into strips about 4″ long
  • 1 medium carrot cut into strips about 4″ long
  • 3 – 6oz of buckwheat noodles (Depending on how many rolls you want to make, you can also use korean sweet potatoes starch noodles, glass noodles instead)
  • Some lettuce cut into small pieces
  • Some fresh mint leaves
  • Some fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1 packet of rice paper wraps

Instructions:

  1. Damp or sprinkle some water on your cutting board.
  2. Prepare a large plate with some warm water. Dip your rice paper wrap in the water for 10-15 seconds and then spread it carefully on the cutting board. Note: if the rice paper wrap is too sticky after dipping into the water. You can also try to wipe it with a wet cloth. Different brands/kinds of rice paper wraps has different thickness and if it is too wet, it will affect your wrapping process.
  3. Place your ingredients (cocktail shrimps, 2-3 pieces of cucumber strips, 2-3 pieces of carrot strips, some noodles, lettuce, 3-4 pieces of mint leaves, 3-4 pieces of cilantro leaves). Note: adjust the ingredients portion according to your own likes
  4. Gently fold the rice paper wrap from the top towards the middle, then tuck in the side edges, and continue to fold and roll until the seam is sealed.
  5. Dip the rolls with peanut sauce and/or sweet chili sauce. Note: for homemade peanut sauce instructions, refer to the link to the original recipe by watchwhatueat.

Black Rice Mango Salad

Ever since we went to Sun Restaurant and tried their Sun’s Black Rice Salad, I have been trying to make it on my own. Finally bought black rice and was excited to start experimenting with black rice salad.

As usual, I will go to Pinterest to look for ideas and I found this recipe kiipfit that might be the closest to the Sun’s version. Picked up the ingredients last weekend and got busy chopping away in my kitchen last night.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups of black rice (cooked and cooled)
  • 1 1/2 cup ripe mango chucks – you can use frozen mango chucks
  • 1 cup cucumbers (finely diced)
  • 1/2 cup of red bell pepper (finely diced) – I used green since that’s what I have on hand
  • 1/2 cup of red onion (finely chopped) – I used sweet onion instead
  • 1/4 cup cilantro (chopped)
  • 1 tablespoon of fresh jalapeno peppers (chopped) – I had it sliced thinly instead as hubby like the spice and heat
  • 1 tablespoon of mint leaves (chopped)
  • 1 teaspoon of lime zest – you can use lemon instead
  • 1 tablespoon of lime juice – I used half of a small lime, you can use lemon instead
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper

Instructions:

  1. Cooked black rice as per package instructions and let it cool.
  2. In a salad bowl, combine all the ingredients and mix very well.
  3. Let it stand for few minutes before serving.

Baked Garlic Parmesan Chicken

I have not been blogging for a long time ever since the arrival of my little prince. He kept me real busy and he’s almost 11 months old. Had lots of recipes that I had tried cooking over last few months but never had the chance to write it out to share. Hopefully I will be able to update them bit by bit.

Last week had been a crazy week for us. I didn’t have the time to do grocery shopping and wanted us to have a meal that is not frozen dinner out from a box. Search through my freezer and found chicken breast and started searching for a recipe that do not require much ingredients since we do not have much at home.

This is a recipe I found online (Cakescottage) which is easy, comes together quickly and everyone can make it.

It took me more than 5mins to prepare since I have to defrost my frozen chicken breasts. Once it’s thawed, I was able to throw dinner into the oven rather quickly.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup Mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup shredded Parmesan Cheese
  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breast cutlets (The ones I had were thick, so I sliced it into half)
  • 4-5 teaspoons of Italian seasoned dry bread crumbs (Did not have that and could not find my panko, so i just crushed out 2 pieces of Graham Crackers)
  • 1/2 teaspoon of garlic powder (I added a little more as hubby loves garlic)
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon pepper (I use normal black pepper instead)

 

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. In a small bowl, combine mayo, garlic powder and parmesan cheese and mix well.
  3. Moisten chicken breasts with water and lay on baking sheet (I line my baking sheet with parchment paper for easy clean up).
  4. Spread mayonnaise mixture evenly on all chicken by spreading it on the top of each piece. Sprinkle some pepper to taste.
  5. Bake for 20 minutes, remove from oven and sprinkle bread crumbs on each piece of chicken.
  6. Sprinkle some more pepper if desire (I did and love the peppery taste).
  7. Return to oven and bake for another 20 minutes or until chicken is cooked thoroughly.
  8. Tops will be browned and chicken should be juicy.
  9. Broil it for a minute or two if you like it extra browned on top.
  10. Serve with veggies or pasta salad.

 

 

Italian Wedding Soup

This is a special recipe that was shared to me by a Singapore friend aka sister, Grace Adamson, that I met through Facebook. She is a wonderful chef and all her food pictures Gourmet Kwi-zeen always make me crave for food from our home country.

She knows that I’m trying to cook my own meals and constantly looking for healthy and easy recipe as my husband is very health conscious. So Grace shared with me her version of Italian Wedding Soup. It has a clear broth that looks like Chinese soup but taste like the traditional version.

The ingredients and directions listed below were shared by her without measurements. I did a slight modifications and included my own measurements for my future reference.

Ingredients:

  • 1 packet of Italian spicy chicken sausage (sliced)
  • 1 medium size Onion
  • 1 cup of carrot (diced)
  • 2 cups of celery (sliced)
  • 1 tsp of dried basil
  • 1 tsp of cumin
  • salt & pepper (adjust to your own taste)
  • 1 box (6oz) of Pearl couscous
  • 2 boxes (32oz box) of Low Sodium chicken broth (Grace uses 1 can of chicken broth & 2-3 cups of water)
  • Chickpeas (optional)
  • Baby spinach

Directions:

  1. Brown the sausage in a pan. Dish up set aside.
  2. Add in all the veg except spinach. Saute slightly and season with salt & pepper (you do not want to overcook the veg as it’ll still be boil to soften later).
  3. Add in chicken broth. Bring to boil.
  4. Add in dried basil & cumin. Add in pearl couscous.
  5. Cover and cook for about 3-5 mins until couscous is cooked.
  6. Add in chickpeas (if using) and then add in the sausage meat and taste.
  7. Adjust to taste.
  8. Finally before serving, add in plenty of spinach. Stir in and serve.

Do not boil the spinach as it’ll become dull in color and won’t look appetizing. It’s a clear soup but it taste like our Chinese soup but to the Americans, it taste like their soup as well. You can substitute any of the ingredients if you don’t have in the pantry or fridge. This is a very flexible recipe.

Thanks to Grace, I made a big pot for dinner and lunch and most of all, hubby loves it.

 

 

 

Red Bean Lotus Seed Soup

I was craving for red bean soup but I didn’t want to watch the stove while cooking so I have decided to use my pressure cooker to make this chinese dessert. So I googled and found this recipe online  Christine’s Recipes and did some modifications to it. I didn’t have to wait long to enjoy my red bean soup.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup of red beans
  • 1 cup of lotus seeds
  • a couple pieces of dried mandarin peel depending on your preference (I use 4 pieces)
  • 2 litres of water
  • 3-4 pieces of pandan leaves and tie them into a knot
  • 1 pieces of rock sugar (about 100gm), adjust to your own taste

 

Directions:

  1. Soak the lotus seeds in hot water for a few minutes, once its soften, split it open and remove the green stem in it. The green stem is bitter so you do not want to eat that.
  2. Soak the dried mandarin peel until its soft. Use a knife and lightly scrape the inner white part as it can be bitter.
  3. Wash, rinse and drain the red beans well.
  4. Put all the ingredients into the inner pot of the pressure cooker. Close the lid, make sure to turn steam release handle to ‘sealing’ position. Press the “congee” or “porridge” button on your pressure cooker.
  5. Once it is done, the pressure cooker will beep. Let the pressure cooker to natural release the pressure. Once it is done, the float valve will drop to the down position.
  6. Open the lid slowly and away from you so the steam will not get into your face.
  7. Your red bean lotus seed dessert is ready. Remove the mandarin peel and pandan leaves. Stir and mix before serving. Add more rock sugar or brown sugar if needed.

 

 

Asian Lettuce Chicken Wrap

Ingredients:

  • 2 chicken breasts pounded very thin and chopped into small pieces
  • 1 can of  water chestnuts, roughly chopped (I like water chestnuts so I use 1 can but you can use whatever amount you like)
  • 1 large carrot, diced
  • ½ cup shelled edamame
  • 1 cup mushrooms, diced
  • ½ sweet onion, diced
  • 2 tablespoon olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ cup hoisin sauce
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper (I use white pepper)
  • 1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon sriracha sauce (chili garlic sauce found in the Asian grocery section)
  • 1 head butter lettuce or iceberg lettuce

Directions:

  1. Heat large frying pan over medium heat, then add olive oil. Add chicken and cooked it until it’s almost cook and then add the rest of the vegetables to frying pan. Saute over medium heat 5-10 minutes until veggies are tender and chicken is cooked through.
  2. Add all the seasonings to the pan. Stir and sauté about 5 minutes longer. Serve in lettuce leaves and top with additional sriracha sauce and green onions if desired.

For me I like it with multigrain rice.

Fire Hot Instant Taco Bowl

I bought a pressure cooker before Christmas and today I finally had the time to open the box and start to experiment with my new toy.

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Being a first time mom, I’m constantly trying to juggle my time. Ever since Xander had turned 2 months old, he wants attention most of the time. Even when he is in his bouncy chair, he wants to be able to see you and what’s going on in the house. If I leave him to cook, he will be yelling away until he sees me or daddy before he starts to smile. If I get to cook twice a week, that’s like a bonus to me. So most of the time, daddy has to take care of dinner. Either he orders take out, or he will make dinner using frozen meals. I got tired of what we are having and decided that we need to change our lifestyle for 2017. A friend of mine told me about a super good deal on the pressure cooker on Amazon and BINGO I let my finger do the walking…

Both hubby and I were pretty excited about what we can do with the pressure cooker, so I let him picked the recipe. Being a Mexican food lover, he chose ‘Fire Hot Instant Taco Bowl’. So other than breaking out the pressure cooker, I also took out the Pampered Chef Tortilla Stoneware that I got him as Christmas present to make him a Taco Bowl.

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It was so exciting that I started to prepare dinner when Xander finally fell asleep using the recipe from the blog of Adventures of A Nurse I followed 80% of her recipe, replaced white rice with brown rice, and only use 6oz of Monterey jack cheese. The overall taste is good but hubby and I felt that if we did not stir in the Monterey jack cheese to the rice, it would be even better. The flavor of the cheese has taken over the taco seasoning. So if I were to make it again, I would sprinkle the cheese in my taco bowl.

Here’s how my Taco bowl look like:


This will be the modified version of my Taco Bowl the next time I’m gonna it.

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound ground turkey
  • 2 cups brown rice
  • 1.5 cups Hot Salsa
  • 2 packets Hot Taco Seasons
  • 1 can black beans
  • 8 oz Monterey jack cheese
  • 8 oz sour cream
  • Green onion for garnish
  • Black Olives if desired
  • 2 cups water

Directions:

  1. Place your pot on saute. Saute ground beef or turkey until brown.
  2. Add 2 packets of taco seasons and water.
  3. Add beans and brown rice.
  4. Place on your rice setting (I use brown rice setting) or on manual high pressure for 12 minutes.
  5. Do a quick release and Garnish with cheese, hot salsa, sour cream, green onion, and black olives.
  6. Serve with nacho chips. Enjoy.

Chicken with Ginger & Wine

I had just delivered a 8lbs baby 10 days ago and have been busy with the little one. Learning his schedule for feeding, sleeping etc wears me out and thus I have not been able to cook. Finally last night, I had all the ingredients prepared and did my first confinement cooking.

This dish can be consume from the first week. It has the effect of protecting the stomach, promote blood circulation, and it also helps women in confinement to get rid of coldness and wind in the body.


Ingredients:

  • 1lb of chicken thighs, cut into small pieces
  • 300g of ginger (julienned)
  • 4 tbsp of sesame oil
  • 20g black fungus (soak and shredded)
  • 1 bowl of Chinese rice wine
  • 2 bowls of Yellow wine
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • Salt and Pepper

Directions:

  1. Season the chicken thighs with Chinese rice wine, salt and pepper and leave it in the fridge for 30mins
  2. Heat the sesame oil and sauté the ginger until golden brown, then add in black fungus and chicken and stir-fry, pour in yellow wine, soy sauce and simmer with lid on and bring to boil.
  3. Serve hot.