Chawanmushi with edamame, mushrooms, and radishes

So I actually made this dish for my parents on their anniversary. What had happened was that they were out playing golf, but they did not have any dinner plans, or even anything special planned. I didn’t realize this until maybe 4pm, so I decided that I would make them at least something special to…

Plated devil’s food cake

I was playing around with a new silicone bar mold that I just bought, and that’s where this dessert came from. Well, that and me wanting to make a dessert that was inspired by chocolate and tofu. We have a chocolate cake with a tofu-chocolate mousse, soy caramel ganache, cocoa praline, and a tofu ice…

Pork and vegetable fried rice

No matter who you ask, one of the first Chinese dishes anyone has any exposure to is fried rice. It is a quintessential Chinese dish! So many different varieties too, truthfully. For me, it always starts with cooking a thin layer of egg, then breaking it up and stirring in my already-cooked rice into that….

Pork and mushroom san choy bau

I feel like san choy bau is a Chinese dish a lot of people have either eaten or seen, but they did not know the same of. It is basically a lettuce wrap, with minced and stir-fried meat inside. It is such a simple recipe, as with most Chinese dishes, but it is one of…

Duck fat-grilled onigiri

These rice balls were just a way for me to utilize a bucketload of leftover brown rice. With rice of any kind, it can be very bland. In the case of brown rice, that is no exception. I knew that I had to inject as much flavor as I could into it, so I wanted…

Counting stars: a plated dessert

I actually came up with this concept when I was testing a dessert recipe for an upcoming pop-up in Dallas. Unfortunately, the test run didn’t necessarily go as planned, but I didn’t want to throw away the ingredients, so I shifted gears, and went with a rice pudding instead. What I love about rice pudding…

Tofu steak: a childhood favorite

One of the best things I ever ate growing up was the tofu steak at Kappo Seafood in Torrance. It was this crunchy, creamy, deep fried block of tofu with mushrooms that were stewed in a sukiyaki-type of sauce, served with bonito flakes and scallions. I still remember ordering it as a kid, just out…

Dou Jiang inspired dumplings

I literally came up with this dumpling while I was driving to Milkbar one Saturday morning. I was craving Chinese brunch, and I remember eating dou jiang, or warm sweetened soy bean milk, with youtiao, or kruellers. For those of you who aren’t familiar with soy bean milk, it’s Chinese soy milk. Unlike the Silk…

Echoes of seashells: a plated dish

One of my favorite proteins to cook is clams. They’re juicy, succulent, full of beautiful, ocean-y brine, and they lend themselves well to flavoring anything that they’re cooked in because of that. For this particular dish, I wanted to make something that captures the delicate nature of seafood in general, while packing a huge punch…

All for one: a plated dish

Whenever I have a whole duck, I love to go to town. Being a butcher, it’s a ton of fun to work with the whole animal. In this case, I wanted to do duck three ways. The first was braising and roasting the leg. The second was a seared duck breast. The third, it was…

Pork belly, apple, and cauliflower bowl

I really just came up with this dish after reading through the “Everything I want to eat” cookbook by Sqirl LA’s Jessica Koslow. In the book, there was this delicious pork belly bowl, and I wanted to make my own version of it. They paired the housemade bacon with a sorrel pesto, farro, ricotta cheese,…

Phoenix in the Hawker Stall: a plated dish

So continuing on with my experiences in the lovely, most amazing MasterChef Kitchen (I hope I had enough adjectives there), there was actually a challenge where we had to cook with chicken. This challenge, not to brag, would have been a cakewalk for me, because I practiced breaking down chickens regularly in college (mostly because…

Fred Bread Buns with Roast Duck and Scallions

I love making “Fred Bread”, which is my take on Japanese milk bread. I also adore making steamed buns with duck. So I figured, why not combine the two? The end result? A really light, fluffy steamed bun with a buttery crumb. It’s pretty awesome. We made these for new years, and since the recipe…

Nightmarket: a plated dish concept

The entire basis of this dish came from wanting to shove as many Chinese/Asian inspired dishes into one thing. So we have roasted duck leg, seared duck breast, green papaya salad, and a duck fat infused bun, served with a duck-blood orange-soy sauce. It’s a lot of food, but it’s guaranteed that you’ll find something…

It’s my life: a plated dessert concept

The name for the dessert was inspired by the Koda Kumi song of the same name. The dessert itself came from me wanting to do something unique, indigenous to almost every American’s life, and most importantly, to show that I don’t give any fucks about what others think about my cooking/baking style. I live my…