Whenever I take a trip to another country, I always make a point of booking myself and TFB in for a cooking class. As well as tasting the national dishes, I also love to see the ingredients and cooking techniques that are used in making them. I always feel that I learn so much from these experience, as well as getting a chance to add a couple of new dishes to my repertoire. In Siem Reap we were lucky enough to be invited to take part in the cooking class operated by the stunningly beautiful Phum Baitang resort.
I can’t even remember the last time I shared a recipe, but so many people have been asking for it on Instagram after seeing my pictures that I couldn’t resist, plus its the season of sharing. Now I don’t like to blow my own trumpet, but I’m pretty sure I make the world’s best eggnog, Everyone I have ever made it for has fallen in love with the stuff, even those who were convinced they didn’t like it. If you’ve had it before, you’ll know that homemade eggnog is nothing like the crap you buy in the carton so put that yucky stuff out of your mind right now. A home made eggnog is a rich and creamy bourbon spiced custardy drink of Christmas flavoured goodness.
If you are a follower of my Instagram you may have noticed that I’ve taken up juicing! For the past few years I have attributed my weight loss and good health to the fact I follow a Raw til 4 diet and start my day with a green or veggie smoothie everyday. It has honestly worked wonders for me inside and out. However I gained quite a few pounds on my last trip home, 10 to be exact (damn you Cornish pasties!), and while 5 came off rather quickly the other 5 seem to have stuck around. I wouldn’t usually mind, but I bought quite a lot of clothes while I was back home that are still rather on the tight side. So to give me a bit of a boost I thought I’d give juicing a try after watching the Jason Vale Super Juice Me documentary. I’m not planning to give up eating indefinitely, so don’t worry, but for three days this week and next I’ll be cleansing with juice and then after that have a juice day once or twice a week to clean out all those pizzas and burgers I eat. So since I haven’t been eating out over the last few days I thought I’d share 3 of my juice recipes. Despite being packed with veggies and nutrients they are totally delicious, and will have you feeling fighting fit in no time.
One of the nicest things about having a food blog is that every now and then companies ask if they can send me their products to try. I don’t like to look a gift horse in the mouth so almost always accept. However not all the products are deemed suitable for you my dear readers. I really strive to help you find delicious foodie treats that are unique and hard to track down in day to day life, and I think that is what I found in Salt House.
Coming from a small town in rural England I didn’t really grow up eating much Japanese food. However over the years it has become one of the cuisines that I have grown most to love. It started with a sushi roll obsession, then moved on to the curry,tempura, and noodles and now I’m willing to try almost anything they make. Despite living in Seoul for at least 5 years I had no idea that there was a Japanese neighbourhood located just around the corner from my house in Ichon, and I probably never would have discovered it if one of my friends hadn’t taken me. From the outside Sujurantei doesn’t really look all that special, but when you go down the stairs and see the people waiting for tables you soon realise that this is no ordinary restaurant.
I love a theme and I love Pavlova so this really is the ideal Christmas dessert for me. I was invited to a whole host of Christmas events last week, and was up to my eye balls in party food. When everyone knows you write a food blog the pressure is on to make something spectacular, that and the fact I’m a total perfectionist when it comes to food. This Berry Christmas Wreath was the ideal treat for me to bring, as I was able to make the meringue the night before and just put the topping on at the party. I topped mine with medley of red berries, including strawberries, raspberries, cranberries, and pomegranate, then added a sprinkling of icing sugar and a sprig of holly to give it that christmassy effect.
Today I have a very exciting gift for all my readers, bottles of hot sauce made by none other than twisted sister guitarist Eddie Ojeda. Life is funny and sometimes you meet people in bars and a few weeks later you recieve a case of hot sauce. Now as much as TFB and I love hot sauce, we are never going to get through this case, well we probably will but I’m getting into the Christmas spirit and sharing the love.
So to promote Twisted Hot Sauce which is currently not available anywhere in Korea, I have 6 bottles to give away.The Twisted Hot sauce comes in 3 fun and fruity flavours Apple Serrano (mild), Cherry Habanero (medium), and Peach Carolina Reaper (hot) . Now I’ve been playing around with them and have found my hotness appreciation level to be somewhere between the mild and the medium depending on what I’m eating. While TFB loves the medium, and the ultimate heat when he’s feeling like something with a little more kick. To win yourself a bottle all you have to do is share this post and and comment which flavour you would like to win Apple Serrano (mild), Cherry Habanero (medium), and Peach Carolina Reaper (hot), I will be picking the 6 winners on Friday!
So what to make with my new supply of hot sauces? Well the lush in me immediately thought of cocktails, and my favourite morning beverage the Bloody Mary soon came to mind. The problems with making a Bloody Mary in Korea is that the tomato juice here is insanely sweet. So to combat that, I made my own. It’s actually very easy, you just boil and blend, and cherry tomatoes are currently pretty cheap. I decided to spice my Mary up, not only with these lovely hot sauces, but also with a slice of bacon, because bacon always makes everything better.
1kg of cherry tomatoes
2 cups of water
4 cloves of garlic
A pinch of cumin
A pinch of chipotle
Bloody Mary (makes 1 cocktail)
300mls of tomato juice
50mls of vodka
1/2 a lemon
A pinch of celery salt (plus more for the rim)
6 drops of Worcestershire sauce
6 drops of Twisted hot sauce (the heat depends on you)
1 stick of celery
1 rasher of bacon
1 slice of lemon for garnish
1.To make the tomato juice take all the stalks off the tomatoes, give them a quick rinse then pop them in a large pan. Add two cups of water and bring to the boil for about 10 minutes. Allow to cool then blend blend blend. I currently have the use of a Vitamix so didn’t feel the need to strain, but if your blender isn’t so powerful put the juice through a sieve. Store in the fridge and chill until making those Marys!
2. Cook the slice of bacon if using and cut your celery stick and lemon garnish. To rim the glass, make a pile of celery salt, rub the lemon on the edge of the glass then roll it in the celery salt. Fill the glass with ice.
3. If you have a cocktail shaker use it, if not just make it straight in your glass. Add the vodka, Worcestershire sauce, Twisted hot sauce, celery salt, and the juice of half a lemon and then top with half of the tomato juice. Add a large cube of ice and shake like there is no tomorrow. Pour your Mary into your glass, then top with the remaining tomato juice and garnish with the bacon, celery and a slice of lemon. Voilà a healthy and socially acceptable way of drinking vodka in the morning.
All summer long I’ve been craving one thing and one thing only, Naengmyeon. Naengmyeon is an incredibly popular summer time dish here that consists of starchy buck wheat noodles that are served in a mild vinegary soup with a boiled egg on top. Other than ice cream, ice cold noodles are the only thing to help you cool off in the sweat box that is Seoul during July & August. I was planning on going to a restaurant to get myself a bowl when I realized that it would be easy enough to give them a go myself.
Cocktail hour is always a very important part of the day in the Fat Girl household. Nothing beats a delicious cocktail after a hard day’s work, especially if you can enjoy it up on your very own roof top. This cocktail came into being after I was desperate to make use of my blossoming thyme plant. Herb infused simple syrups can really take your cocktails up a notch, the thyme in this pairs perfectly with the gin and the blackberry, and since we had a bottle of fizz in the fridge we thought why not, though you could always try it with soda water if you are looking for something a bit lighter.
On Sunday I baked a bacon and jalapeno cake for my good friend Ray’s birthday. Most of the cakes I make tend to be on the girly side so I wanted to do something a bit more manly. Also with Ray being one of Seoul’s most innovative bar tenders, I wanted to be a bit more creative than my usual chocolate or lemon. So therefore the bacon jalapeno cake was born! I first thought of pairing the jalapeno and bacon in a dessert when I was making my bacon encrusted doughnuts, though honestly I was rather concerned about how it would actually taste, right up until the moment it was cut, but in the end I think it turned out well and everyone seemed to enjoy it, or at least that’s what everyone told me.