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Monday, August 24, 2015

Cooking Show....Chinese Food!

We filmed an episode of the cooking show this week.

Dan, the awesome camera man, went to China for a couple of weeks in late June/early July.  Donna, the producer of the show, had called me while he was away.  Our conversation went something like this:

Donna: When Dan gets back from China, you should cook Chinese food
              with him for the show.
Me:       REAL Chinese food?  I've heard that the food in China doesn't
              resemble American Chinese takeout...
Donna:  No, just cook Chinese food Fran-style!
Me:       Okay, I'll cook some Asian-inspired dishes and he can talk about
              the actual food that he ate in China.
Donna:  I'm going to ask him to bring back some hats and Chinese-style
              clothes for you to wear.
Me:       Frannie don't do that!  NO. WAY.

So I put together a menu, and decided that we needed a beverage.

A meal at a Chinese restaurant just isn't complete without a fun beverage!  Especially if it has a little umbrella in it.

I usually order a Mai-Tai when we go out for Chinese food.  

I've never made actually made one.  Not a problem, though.  Thanks to Google we can pretty much get any info we need, right?

Not so fast.  I googled "Classic Mai Tai Recipe," and "Traditional Mai Tai Recipe." As it turns out, the typical fruity Mai Tai that is served in Chinese restaurants bears very little resemblance to a classic or traditional Mai Tai.  Much like the food served in Chinese restaurants bears little resemblance to the food they serve in China.

After reading through a couple of the recipes (no fruit juice!  no grenadine!), I thought I would have to just keep looking until I found one that I liked.  

As I clicked on the next recipe, the first sentence of that recipe effectively ended my search:  
The Mai Tai is an original tiki classic that is neither neon-colored nor overly sweet.

Oh, well.  Continuing with the theme, I will just have to make them Fran-style, like Donna said at the beginning.

Here they are, in all their fruity, neon-colored glory.

I kept it simple.  2 parts pineapple juice, one part orange juice, one part rum and 1/4 part grenadine.  Served over ice, garnished with fruit and an umbrella.

Fortified with a Mai Tai, Dan and I went right into preparing our next dish.  Here's the printable recipe.

Dan informed me that this beef dish bore no resemblance to the food he tried in China.  He then went on to talk about a snake dish that he tried, which he declared, "I felt as if I were chewing on a pencil eraser!"  

 Here's the printable recipe.

Again, Dan informed me that this did not at all resemble the food he ate in China.  Or rather, it did not resemble the food that he didn't eat.  He couldn't bring himself to eat the large horned beetles.  And other creatures that I will not mention...

Dan did a great job helping me to prepare these dishes, though he did emphatically state when we were through, "And from now on, I shall remain behind the camera!"

Whichever side of the camera he's on, he still gets to enjoy the fruits of our labor at the end of the shoot!

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Asian-Inspired Beef & Broccoli

Our upcoming episode will feature Asian-themed cuisine!

Here's a sneak peak at one of the recipes!  

Ginger & garlic & soy sauce--what's not to like?

Monday, August 10, 2015

Sonoma Chicken Salad (Whole Foods Knockoff)

Considering that it's summer, and we're all looking for shortcuts at dinner time, and it's been a really long time (about six months!) since I've posted a recipe that requires a rotisserie chicken, ---here you go!
This salad is a riff on Whole Foods' Sonoma Chicken Salad.  Nuts and celery for crunch, grapes and honey for sweetness...I hope you enjoy this as much my family does!