23rd January 2013

Boo-ya! Bibimbap! (for cheaters)



I was picking up a few things at the local Trader Joe’s when I saw a package of “Bool Kogi”, apparently TJ’s version of “bulgogi”, and on a whim, threw it in my cart.  Lisa asked how we were going to eat it, and I thought, bibimbap!  We had most of everything we needed on hand (I had also grabbed a bag of baby greens), and this Korean dish is one of my favorites, so it was a no-brainer.  This would obviously be better if you made the bulgogi yourself, but using the TJ shortcut saved a bunch of time (the meat cooks in about 7 minutes) and was certainly good enough to get the job done.

Beef Bulgogi (“Bool Kogi”, in TJ parlance), grilled and sliced thin
Brown Rice, cooked
soy sauce
sesame oil
canola oil
sesame seeds
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 bunch of spinach, or one bag of baby spinach/kale/chard
1 carrot, julienned
1 zucchini, julienned
5 shiitake mushrooms, sliced thin
2 eggs
Gochujang sauce

Place the spinach/greens in boiling water until wilted, a minute or so. Drain, rinse with cold water, and squeeze dry in paper towels. Add a teaspoon of soy sauce, a pinch of salt, the garlic, and stir. Drizzle with sesame oil and a few sesame seeds; set aside.
Saute the carrot in a pan over high heat for just 30 seconds or so, set aside.
Sprinkle salt on the zucchini, then saute the zucchini in a pan over high heat until translucent and set aside.
Saute the mushrooms over medium high heat with 1 teaspoon of canola oil. Add two teaspoons of soy sauce, a teaspoon of sugar, and stir for a couple of minutes until glazed. Drizzle with sesame oil and set aside.
Prepare two eggs, sunny-side up. (Here’s one method).

In each bowl, put a base layer of rice.
Arrange each of the toppings (meat, vegetables) separately to your liking, with the fried egg in the center.
To serve, stir it all up, get that yolk in there, and dig in!

Serve with gochujang and sesame oil.

posted in Korean, Main Dishes | 0 Comments

27th November 2012

North Carolina Pulled Pork Sandwiches

We’re really starting to get into this slow cooker thing. How great is it to come home to food that’s ready to eat? Though, oops — this recipe does have the extra step of making a sauce using the reduced cooking liquid, so it’s not as one-and-done as others. The following is adapted from Slow Cooker Revolution, has the perfect blend of vinegar, smoke, sweet, and moist pork. We served the pork on a Macrina brioche bun. Dee. Lish.

Chris says:

Wow, this is great! I can’t believe I’ve never made this at home. This is way better than some of the pulled pork sandwiches I’ve had at restaurants.

Lisa says:

You know what I think of it; I was sneaking bites before you even finished the sauce.

Chris says:

Patience, my dear.

Lisa says:

Patience is for suckas. I was hungry.

Chris says:

You have to admit, though, it was worth waiting for the finished product… the cider vinegar, the sweet from the brown sugar, and you really get that nice smokey flavor from the ham hock, and, well, the liquid smoke.

Lisa says:

Obviously it was worth it! I’m just saying. That pork would have disappeared whether or not it was finished.


North Carolina Pulled Pork Sandwiches
3 tbsp brown sugar, divided
2 tbsp paprika
1 tbsp chili powder
1/2 tbsp ground cumin
salt and pepper
1 2.5-lb boneless pork butt, trimmed and halved
1 large smoked ham hock, rinsed
1 cup chicken broth
1/2 cup cider vinegar
3/8 cup (6 tbsp) ketchup
3/4 tsp liquid smoke

Combine 1.5 tablespoons brown sugar, paprika, chili powder, cumin, 1 teaspoons salt, and 1/2 tablespoon pepper in bowl. Using a fork, prick the pork all over. Rub the brown sugar mixture over the pork, wrap tightly in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 8 to 24 hours.
Place ham hock in slow cooker. Unwrap the pork and place on top of the ham hock. Pour broth over pork, cover, and cook until pork is tender, 9 to 11 hours on low or 5 to 7 hours on high.
Transfer pork and ham hock to a large bowl, let cool slightly, then shred into bite-size pieces discarding skin, bones, and excess fat; cover to keep warm. Let braising liquid settle for 5 minutes, then remove fat from surface using large spoon.
Strain liquid into medium saucepan and simmer until thickened and measures 1/2 cup, 20 to 30 minutes. Whisk in vinegar, ketchup, liquid smoke, and remaining 1.5 tablespoons sugar and bring to simmer. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Toss shredded pork with 3/4 cups sauce; add more sauce as needed to keep meat moist.
Serve on buns with pickle chips and extra sauce.

4 generous servings

posted in Main Dishes, Slow Cooker Revolution | 5 Comments

10th November 2012

Toasted Coconut and Kale Salad with Baked Tofu

Here’s a healthy and toddler-friendly meal (little tofu cubes for little hands!) inspired by a recipe in Heidi Swanson’s Super Natural Every Day. Baked, marinated tofu, along with crispy kale and toasted coconut sit atop a bed of warm farro. If you liked the kale chips recipe you’ll probably be all over this. I really didn’t measure the marinade ingredients, so taste as you go until you get to a flavor balance you like.

Chris says:

Well, the kiddo likes it…

Lisa says:

Yeah, he’s inhaling! It’s about time you started posting again, by the way. How many times have we made this?

Chris says:

First time!

Lisa says:

Okay, *I’ve* made this at least three times before, Buster Brown.

Chris says:

But never with the tofu.

Lisa says:

Sigh… really? Okay, yeah, never with the tofu. Which was my idea anyway.

Chris says:

I’m not taking credit for it — even though I want to… yumma.

Lisa says:

I’m taking credit for getting seconds.


Toasted Coconut and Kale Salad with Baked Tofu
1 16-oz package extra-firm tofu
1/4 cup soy sauce/liquid aminos
1/8 cup rice wine vinegar
1 tbsp sesame oil
1 tsp lime juice
1 tsp sugar
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 bunch kale, stems and stalks removed, chopped
1 cup unsweetened large-flake coconut
2 cups cooked farro

Preheat the oven to 400°F.
To prepare the tofu marinade, in a small bowl mix the soy sauce (or liquid aminos), rice wine vinegar, sesame oil, lime juice, and sugar; whisk until incorporated. Cut the tofu into bite-sized cubes, place in a shallow baking dish, and cover with the marinade, ideally for an hour or longer.
When ready, line a shallow baking pan with parchment paper and, using a slotted spoon, transfer the tofu to the pan. Reserve the marinade.
Bake the tofu for 30-40 minutes or until desired firmness, flipping the tofu once to brown evenly.
While the tofu is baking, to prepare the kale and coconut, whisk the olive oil with 3 tbsp of the reserved marinade in a small bowl. Put the kale and coconut in a large bowl and toss well with about two-thirds of the olive oil mixture.
Spread the kale evenly across two baking sheets. Bake in the oven for the last 12 or so minutes with the tofu, until the coconut is deeply golden brown, tossing once or twice along the way. If the kale mixture on the top baking sheet begins to get too browned, move it to the lower rack.
Remove from the oven and transfer the kale mixture to a medium bowl to taste. If it needs a bit more dressing, add some and toss. Place the farro on a serving platter and top with the tossed kale and tofu. Serve warm.

3-4 Servings

posted in Main Dishes, Vegetarian | 0 Comments

10th November 2012

Free Stuff Review: Paring Knife Fusionwood v2.0

Food blog perk time! I was recently asked by New West Knifeworks if I’d be interested in trying out one of their knives from the new Fusionwood v2.0 series, and I jumped at the opportunity. (Who doesn’t love free, high-quality, Made in the USA knives?)

They are currently running a contest via their Facebook page where you can enter to win FOUR of these new knives. Did you get that? FREE. KNIVES.

I was given the new paring knife to try out, and the first thing I noticed was that it was very comfortable to hold in my hand. It has a nice weight, a razor-sharp blade, and worked perfectly for pretty much the only thing I use a paring knife for: eating an apple. The apple was no match for the combination of this new knife in my hands and my hungry appetite: Mission Accomplished! With its heft and ease of use, I may actually have to look for more opportunities to use this paring knife!

Thanks again to New West Knifeworks for sending out this super-cool looking, very useful knife. It’ll definitely replace my old supermarket-bought paring knife, and it’s great to know that the materials are from the USA, as is the assembly and workmanship. Ah, patriotism!

posted in free stuff, Main Dishes | 0 Comments

31st October 2012

Slow-Cooker Nutella Bread Pudding

As you’ve probably noticed, the blog posts here on We Heart Food have slowed considerably over the past two years, and there’s a very straightforward — and adorable — reason for that: our son takes up a lot of time! 🙂 We still try newer recipes on a somewhat regular basis, but trying to find the time to photograph and style the food before we sit down to eat has been a little bit of a challenge. One thing we’re trying out in an effort to cut down the evening kitchen time is the slow cooker! The positive is that we come home to finished dinners; the negative is that slow-cooker food isn’t the most photogenic. Here’s one notable exception, a birthday surprise that I made for Lisa — Nutella bread pudding! This recipe comes from Slow Cooker Revolution.
Lisa says:

You jerk!

Chris says:

Not quite the reaction I expected, but… thank you?

Lisa says:

You know I’m going to eat way too much of this thing — it smells awesome!

Chris says:

It’s your birthday, you’re allowed to overeat!

Lisa says:

I’m eating it right now… oh.. my.. god.

Chris says:


Lisa says:


Nutella Bread Pudding
Vegetable oil spray
1 14 oz loaf challah bread, cut into 1‑inch cubes
1/2 cup chocolate chips
2 cups heavy cream
2 cups whole milk
9 large egg yolks
1 cup Nutella
3/4 cup plus 1 tbsp granulated sugar
4 tsp vanilla extract
3/4 tsp salt
2 tbsp light brown sugar

Line slow cooker with aluminum foil collar, then line with foil sling and coat with vegetable oil spray. Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 225 degrees. Spread bread over rimmed baking sheet and bake, shaking pan occasionally, until dry and crisp, about 40 minutes. Let bread cool slightly, then transfer to very large bowl.
Mix chocolate chips into dried bread; transfer to prepared slow cooker. Whisk cream, milk, egg yolks, Nutella, 3/4 cup granulated sugar, vanilla, and salt together in bowl, then pour mixture evenly over bread. Press gently on bread to submerge.
Mix remaining tablespoon granulated sugar with brown sugar then sprinkle over top of casserole. Cover and cook until center is set, about 4 hours on low. Let cool for 30 minutes before serving.

Eat until you can’t eat any more, then repeat the next day.

Then bring to a Halloween Party.

8-10 Servings

posted in Desserts | 1 Comment