Sunday, September 25, 2011

Chicken Stew & Kalua Pork Manapua


Had a get together yesterday and someone left us with a bunch of celery...EWWW. I hate to waste food but that isn't something my family goes gaga for so I decided to make stew--Chicken stew

4 sticks of celery (chopped)
2 carrots (chopped)
1 small onion (chopped)
2 small red potatoes (peeled and chopped)
2 boneless chicken breasts
1 can Italian Stewed Tomatoes (chopped)
1/4 cup of barley
1/2 tbs of basil
1/2 tbs of thyme
dash of salt and pepper

1) Filled a medium size pot with half pot of water, turn heat to medium high.
2) Add in celery, carrots, onions, let simmer for 20 minutes.
3) Add in chicken, red potatoes, and stewed tomatoes and its liquid content
4) Add in barly, basil, thyme, salt, and pepper
5) Reduce heat to low, let simmer until barly and chicken are cooked through
6) Pull chicken out, dice or shred
7) Spoon about 2/3 cups of veggies into a food processor and pulse it a few times (this will help thicken the sauce)
8) Place chicken and puree veggies back in pot, simmer on low until ready to eat

Of course, if you want your stew to be even thicker, add in about 3 tbs of cornstarch mix with 1/4 cup water, allow the pot to boil, then reduce heat, and wait until sauce thickens.

I was debating whether i should put some chopped sausages in there as well but I decided to keep it simple for now. I still got sticks of celery leftover so i might do another stew again!


I've done quite a few manapuas previously, and I have stressed that what you put inside is totally up to you! I have made kalua pork manapua recently. Just wanted to share the same recipe with you as the pizza one, except of course you replace all the pizza stuff with kalua pork!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Chocolate Cake Mix Pecan & Walnut Cookies

I have been trying to bake chewy cookies for awhile now but it is either chewy and flat, or thick and crunchy. I wouldn't figure out what I am missing. But the other day I decided to try something different--using boxed cake mix to bake cookies. I was AMAZED at how easy it is to make chewy cookies!! Semi-homemade is all good with me!

1 box of chocolate cake mix (any kind)
2 eggs
1/2 cup of oil
Chopped Pecans*
Chopped Walnuts*

2) In a bowl, put in cake mix, eggs, and oil and mix until blended (it will be pretty thick)
3) Mix in chopped pecans and walnuts
4) Place them on an UNGREASED cookie sheet (if you accidentally greased it, it is okay. I did that with half of the batch), about an inch apart
5) Bake for about 8-10 minutes at 350 degrees
6) Let it cool on sheet and it will be ready to be devoured!!

*You can add almost anything in your "cookie dough" such as mac nuts, chocolate chips, white chocoate chips, etc. Possibilities are endless!!

I am going to try the white or the yellow cake mix next, just to see if the results would be the same! I am so happy I can finally bake chewy cookies!!!!

Monday, September 5, 2011

Brownie Haupia Pie

Happy Labor Day everyone! I'm having a potluck gathering at my house today, with some water fun in the backyard to cool off the day: baby pool, slip n slide, water guns. I also have some bacon wrapped shrimp & asparagus kabobs as well as steaks in steak marinade ready to pop on the grill. For dessert, I have made Brownie Haupia Pie.

For those not familiar with Haupia, it's considered a coconut pudding but in a gelatin form. If you're ever in Oahu, I would recommend you to visit Yama's Fish Market. Not only do they offer ono hawaiian food and locol sweet and salty snacks, they also have dessert!! They're popular for their Sweet Potatoe Haupia Dessert but I also noticed they had many other haupia desserts such as Brownie-licious Haupia topped Brownie.

I have recently purchased a pouch of Betty Crocker's Fudge Brownie Pouch for 99cents and on another separate occasion purchased Noh's Coconut Pudding Haupia Mix also for 99cents. In addition, I've got a whole bunch of leftover graham crackers from our many 'smores-making in the backyard. Everything just clicked! For 2 dollars and 2.5 hours later...I've got it!

1 Package of graham crackers (or about 6-8 crackers)
1/4 cup Butter
1 Package of Betty Crocker's Fudge Brownie (10.2 oz pouch)..and its ingredients
1 Package of Noh's Coconut Pudding Haupia Mix (2 oz pack)

1) Melt butter in a small sauce pan
2) Place graham crackers in a food processor and pulse until fine
3) Place a foil on the bottom of a 9x9 square pan, leaving extra hanging over the pan for easy pulling up of the pie
4) Mix finely crushed crackers with melted butter in a 9x9 square pan then tightly presses down evenly as the crust
5) Bake crust at 300 degrees for about 5-7 minutes
6) While crust is baking, prepare brownie mixture according to package
7) Take pan out of oven, pour brownie mixture on top of crust, spread (carefully) covering the entire crust and bake according to package specifications
8) Take pan out of oven, let cool completely
9) Prepare Haupia mix according to package
10) Allow haupia to cool but continue to stir so mixture stays smooth and not clumpy (like mine haha)
11) Pour mixture on top of brownie layer, immediately place in fridge for an hour
12) Lift the foil (and using a spatula to prevent it from falling apart) to pull out the pie, flatten the foil.
13) Cut pie in equal sizes and place them in pretty containers and serve immediately or put back in fridge until serving time!

Optional: if it looks clumpy like mine, you can add shredded coconut on top to make it look more professional (but it is really to cover your flaws) ...maybe I should do that now before the guests arrive! hehehe....