Sunday, January 31, 2010

Gourmet in Dirty Conditions

So this is from a while back, but I feel obligated to post this (for my own ego-boost) because the pictures are pretty! As my mom and I were living in non-OCD-acceptable kitchen conditions, we rarely cooked because everything (I mean everything) was completely covered in ceiling crap/dust.

On one snowy day, we decided we deserved better than take-out Chinese food for dinner, and we trekked out to Daido to get sashimi!

We planned to have Temaki Zushi which is like a DIY (do-it-yourself), RIY (roll-it-yourself) sushi roll. What we usually do it get a bunch of different sashimi, some shiso leaves, cucumbers, avocados, and make thin strips of scrambled egg and put it on a big platter. Everyone gets a bowl of sushi rice, and there is a stack of fresh nori (seaweed). And everyone goes to town with their own creative combinations!

This is the best meal for someone who is indecisive like me, because you just get to eat all of everything you want!

Our selections were limited on this night as there was only two of us but looooooooooooook!

Nori, Rice, Shiso, Ume Paste

Ika (squid) and Chu-toro (medium fatty tuna)

Kyuri (Japanese cucumbers... hella crunchier than regular cukes!) and Shiso

Nori, Rice, Ika, Kyuri

Fun Games!

Ok I know i don't have any fun food posts, But try this....

Where is this pizza from?

Here's the crust...

Please participate so I think that people are actually reading this!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Stop Work Order

...has been issued by the Town Of Eastchester... Oh Oscar, why did you have to do it illegally?

But at least my room is done. Bright and Beautiful!

Mirror Closet Dooor... im ballllinnnnn'! And check out my new floors! I don't have to worry about getting splinters in my feet anymore!

Little Closet

Big Closet

Big Closet inside... It is now completely full with clothes/shoes/bags :-)

Too bad they never started on the kitchen.... this is like month 8 with NO OVEN!!
The kitchen is still a mess from all the work they did on the ceilings but my mother is being trooper and cooking delish things for me (i.e: tonight's Piman (japanese peppers) stuffed with pork, and Sweet Kabocha with Ground pork)... I've gained like 10 pounds since she moved in.... but it's so worth it!

Sunday, January 10, 2010


As much as I like to claim how "gangsta" I am, I rarely ever go to Brooklyn. And I only relate Brooklyn to being "gangsta" because of like Biggie and Jay-Z. I was surprised when Tiny took me to Prospect Heights to the Brooklyn Museum to see the "Who Shot Rock & Roll" exhbit. (Note: If you are into photography/music/history of music go check this out! It ends January 31st!)... Prospect Heights was a very green (trees!), pretty neighborhood, with those cute little brownstone apartments.

The exhibit was really cool. It was totally me, and I thank Tiny for taking me because it was very thoughtful of him. It was a photography exhibit of both famous and unknown photographers who took beautiful/meaningful pictures of musicians. The musicians ranged from the legendary Beatles to the more recent Amy Winehouse. I was really impressed with all the photography, and it was so interesting to read about the context in which the photograph was taken.

After being culturally enlightened, Tiny took me to a little Mexican spot that he had been to called Chavella's. The outside of the restaurant is super cute.... just by appearance, it was totally somewhere I would randomly walk in to. The inside also was so my style. It's a tiny little place, very dimly lit, with about 8-10 tables. There was one waitress. The walls were painted bright red, and the tables were just decorated with paper napkins, paper take-out menus, and a little pot of Spanish gum ( I think ??).

We ordered from the lunch specials which are QUITE the deal! I got 1/2 Soup and 1/2 Salad. Tiny got a soup and the 1/2 Chicken with Rice and Beans.

Our soups came first.

To the left is Tiny's Sopa De Tortilla, and mine is the Sopa Di Frijoles. My soup was da bommmbbbbb.... the queso fresco was kinda like goat cheese. There was also a pico de gallo topping. Tiny's tortilla soup was delish as well. It was more refreshing and spicy. Mine was creamy and rich... perfect for the disgustingly cold weather that we've been experiencing here in New York.

Next was the Pollo al Horno with Rice and Beans.

DANNNGGGG that's a mad generous portion for $5.95!

And my Ensalada De La Casa.

With a tomato vinaigrette on the side. YUMMM!!! The dressing was definitely the best part. It was super vinegary but you could still taste the sweetness of the tomatoes.

Finally, dessert. Of course I had to get dessert. At the suggestion of the waitress who "doesn't like cold rice pudding" we went with the flan.

I like all varieties of custards and puddings. This one had a really nice firm texture and was sprinkled with my fav spice ever... CINNAMON!

Tiny is really on the right track by introducing me to these new places. What's next... Staten Island?!

Brooklyn Museum
200 Eastern Parkway (between Classon Ave & Washington Ave)
Brooklyn, NY 11238
Phone: (718)-638-5000

732 Classon Ave (between Park and Prospect Place)
Crown Heights, Brooklyn, 11238
Phone: (718)-622-3100

Friday, January 1, 2010

Osechi at Kyo Ya

Osechi Ryori is what Japanese people traditionally eat on the first day of the new year or for the first few days of the new year. My mom explained to me that Japanese women, back in the day, would spend a few days before the new year preparing these "osechi ryori" which were meant to last a few days and so the women could take a break from cooking for the first few days of the new year. Sexist right? Hahahah... anyways.

I love Osechi because of the tradition. The food itself is like nothing EXTRAORDINARY! It's stuff like kamaboko (broiled fish cakes) nimono (stewed vegetables), kuromame (black soybeans), ozoni (soup with mochi), and kurikinton (mashed sweet potato with chestnuts).

My mom usually does Oshogatsu (New Year) at her home with store bought osechi ryori (of course beautifully presented in a Jubako, which is like a fancy bento box), but since our apartment is a complete mess right now, she treated us to a special Shogatsu dinner at Kyo Ya. Kyo Ya is our favorite Japanese restaurant ever. Every time we go there, we know we will have a perfect meal. See here, and here.

Tonight, Kyo Ya had their regular a la carte menu and the special shogatsu menu. We went with the Osechi Ryori of course! Plus some sashimi (because their sashimi is the best that I have EVER had!), and dessertsies!

Sashimi comes first:

Always beautifull presented... lemme introduce you...

Starting with the bottom right, going clockwise: Salmon Trout, Madai, Hamachi, Kibinago with Miso/Mustard Sauce?

Red Bafun Sea Urchin

Saba (front) and Shima Aji



Here's The English Sashimi Menu... Match the Japanese Names to the English Ones!

Then.... the Osechi Ryori!

Ikura (Salmon Roe) With Flavored Yuzu Citrus

Kombu Wrapped Baby Sardine, Grilled Satoimo Topped with Seafood Sauce, Kamaboko, Kazunoko (Herring Roe... very front long piece)

Slow Cooked Black Bean with PIckled Root

Saikyo Yaki Snapper, Magari Shrimp, ::bright red ball:: = pickled plum?, Cooked Awabi, Pickled Gobo (Burdock Root)

Daikon and Kaki (Persimmon) Namasu

And we order more!

Chestnut with Mix Grain Rice


Skate Fish Kara-Age

Sweet Potato Tempura (by itself or with Mongolian Salt or Soy Sauce)

And Desserts prepared by Mr. YUJI!

OMG... I died after the first bite, went to heaven, came back and took another bite because God loves me :-) This was Kaki (Persimmon) Sorbet with Red Beans and Shiratama (dough balls)...

And the most deliciously bitter, tastes-exactly-like-real-Hojicha, Hojicha Ice Cream with a Black Bean. OMG this was incredible. It was so bitter, with just the slightest amount of sweetness... tasted exactly like I was drinking Hojicha!

I <3 Kyo Ya... Go!

Kyo Ya (Menupages)
94 E 7th St (@ 1st Ave)
New York, NY 10079
Phone: 212-982-4140