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Parmesan French Toast with Garlic Balsamic Mushrooms

I decided to make a special brunch for my fiancé this weekend. Yes, the bf is now a fiancé as he popped the question last week 😲. Well... it was a long time coming since we've been together for 8 years now. But the proposal and effort was cute, even if he fuddled so much that I essentially knew what was going on and what he was trying to do! :) Anyway, he's more of a savory dish person but also loves french toast. I made this french toast that has a delicious parmesan crispiness on the outside with sautéed mushrooms. And then it's even more elevated after I added a poached egg for richness! SO GOOD. It will definitely be part of the weekly rotation!


Parmesan French Toast with Garlic Balsamic Mushrooms

Serves 4

Parmesan French Toast
2 eggs
1/4 cup Grated Parmesan cheese
1 tsp balsamic vinegar (Original Balsamic Vinegar of Modena)
1/4 cup half & half
4 slices challah or aloha bread (I bought from Trader Joe's)
pinch of salt and pepper
  1. Whisk egg, parmesan, balsamic vinegar, half & half and pepper in a shallow dish. Soak both sides of your bread well 
  2. Heat up frying pan at low-medium heat with 1/2 tbsp of butter and fry french toast until golden brown on both sides

Garlic Balsamic mushrooms
10oz mushrooms (I used a mix of oyster and white mushrooms)

1/4 diced onion
1/2 tbsp butter
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp minced garlic
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
2 tsp soy sauce
salt & pepper 
  1. Heat butter and olive oil in a frying pan on medium fire. Sweat onions, garlic and then add in mushrooms. Sauté until softened (about 2 mins)
  2. Stir in balsamic vinegar, soysauce, and a pinch of salt and pepper
  3. Garnish mushrooms over french toast with chopped spring onion and a drizzle of balsamic!
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Rainbow Fruit Galette


Heyooo. Finally back to posting on the blog, now that I have some down time on SICU. I made this large galette for the last week of Pride month. I did think about making a pie, but pies are so time consuming! The only time consuming thing here was slicing fruit and loving the rustic look.
I enjoyed making this because the fruits are so bright and colorful and remained so after baking. Basically you're baking one pie, but with 5 different flavors! What a deal! You can tailor the recipe as you like and use different fruits depending of the season. I felt like these were choices that worked and made for a yummy jammy tart pie.

Rainbow Fruit Galette

makes 1 large 13x10" galette

1.5 sticks cold unsalted butter, cubed
3 cups flour
1 tbsp sugar
1 tsp salt
1/3 cup cold vegetable shortening
1/2 cup ice water

1 cup ea. fruits, sliced (strawberries, peach, pineapple, kiwi, blueberries)
1 tbsp white sugar
1 tbsp brown sugar
2 tsp lemon juice
lemon zest

2 tbsp raw sugar
1 eggwash

  1. For the crust, I used Ina Garten's pie recipe, which is equal to make 2x9" pies. So if you have a favorite pie crust recipe, please feel free to adapt: In a food processor, pulse butter with flour, sugar, salt and vegetable shortening until pea sized. Drizzle in ice water until dough clumps together. Turn out onto clean surface and roll into a ball. Wrap with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 mins
  2. Meanwhile for each sliced fruit, place in a small bowl for each and mix in sugars, lemon juice and a little bit of zest. Allow to macerate for a few mins.  
  3. Preheat oven to 375F. I rolled out my dough into a rectangle the size of a half sheet pan (~18x13"). Drain each sliced fruit and arrange in a line leaving 1" borders. Sprinkle about 2 tbsp of white sugar on top.
  4. Fold galette edge over fruit. Eggwash the folded edge and cover with raw sugar.
  5. Bake for 1 hour or until crust is golden brown and fruit juices bubbling. Allow to cool for 1 hour so that the juices have time to become jammy




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Creamy Kimchi Penne with Chicken Apple Sausage


There's been a lull in the SICU and in the general floors lately due to the nurse's strike in NYC that's supposed to happen next week. I love the nurses for what they do, but it's definitely going to be a difficult time in the hospital when we have travelling nurses, who don't really know how to manage surgical patients. I'm already dreading the day and stocking up on ice cream and chocolate...
Also, now that it is my last week on ICU, I'm making a batch of easy lunch meals, because I won't have a lot of time to cook 😔. Here's, creamy kimchi pasta that I made lighter and without the use of heavy cream. The sweetness of the apples in the chicken sausage goes well with kimchi! Hope you enjoy it as much as I do!

Creamy Kimchi Penne with Chicken Apple Sausage

serves 4

8 oz penne pasta
3 chicken apple sausage, diced bites-sized (Johnsonville brand)
1 cup kimchi, diced bite-sized
1/2 yellow onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced

1.5 cups chicken stock
1/4 cup kimchi juice
4 tbsp cream cheese (I used neufchâtel, low fat)
1 cup milk (I used 1%, and it was still creamy)
1/2 tbsp dried parsley
2 tsp gochugaru (Korean chili pepper)
1/4 cup parmesan
1/2 cup mozzarella
salt and pepper
1 bunch chives
  1. Cook pasta according to package instructions, drain and set aside
  2. In a large pan, brown chicken apple sausage in a little bit of olive oil and set aside. Heat 1 tbsp olive oil in same pan on medium flame, fry kimchi, onions and garlic until onions are slightly translucent (about 2-3 mins)
  3. Add to pan, chicken stock and kimchi juice and bring to boil. Then turn down heat to simmer for 3 mins. Add cream cheese (cut into cubes) and stir until melted
  4. Add dried parsley, cooked sausage and pasta. Then pour in milk and stir. Stir in parmesan and mozzarella until the sauce is thickened. Salt and pepper to taste. If the sauce becomes too thick, you can add more milk.
  5. Serve immediately with chives


This post was sponsored by Johnsonville. I was compensated for this post, but all opinions are completely my own and not endorsed. Thank you for supporting products that keep this blog running!
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Kimchichurri Hasselback Potatoes


Happy St Patrick's Day! I guess it was yesterday, but I wasn't able to post this until today. I'm on another 24 hour shift in the hospital, but was so thankful that my St Paddy's weekend wasn't crazily filled with belligerent drinkers hurting themselves! So in true Irish fashion, I made some potatoes and topped it with something green.
I love a buttered potato and it's actually very common to eat potatoes or sweet potatoes with kimchi in Korea. We say that potatoes and kimchi are friends, like PB & J are! I decided to adapt the classic Argentine chimichurri sauce with kimchi instead and used cilantro because I thought it might go together better than parsley. And so you have kimchi + chimichurri = KIMCHICHURRI!!
I've now got a jar of this delicious tangy fresh kimchichurri in the fridge and will top everything with it this week 😋

Kimchichurri Hasselback Potatoes


6 small yukon potatoes
2 tbsp olive oil
1 pat butter
sea salt, black pepper
roasted sesame seeds

Kimchichurri
2 stalks green onion
1 bunch cilantro (or 1 cup firmly packed leaves, thick stems trimmed)
1/3 cup napa cabbage kimchi
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 tsp kimchi juice
1/2 tbsp gochugaru (Korean red pepper powder)
1 tbsp light sesame oil
1/3 cup olive oil
salt

  1. Prepare potatoes. Wash, remove eyes and soak in cold water for 10 mins. Preheat oven to 425F
  2. Put potato on chopping board, flat side down. Cut in 5 mm intervals almost all the way through
  3. Arrange potatoes in a baking tray. Rub butter on top of each potato, drizzle olive oil and sprinkle salt and fresh black pepper. Bake for about 40 mins or until the tops are crispy and the flesh is soft
  4. While potatoes are baking, get out your food processor. Add green onion, cilantro leaves and kimchi. Pulse to achieve coarse/finely chopped texture. Otherwise, I did this all buy hand (because my food processor was already in use with other things :P). Plus, I like a more chopped chunky texture for chimichurri
  5. Stir in the minced garlic, kimchi juice, gochugaru, sesame and olive oil. Salt to taste
  6. Top kimchichurri over baked hasselback potatoes and serve. Chimichurri can be kept for a week in a tightly closed jar. It tastes even better as it ages!


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Honey Milk Tea Pudding with Boba


One of my favorite desserts is pudding. I grew up eating custards and egg puddings from Japanese convenience stores, so I love eating anything with that silky creamy texture. So here's a creation of mine making boba milk tea into puddings!

This is best served within 24 hours because boba tends to become a little stiff.

Honey Milk Tea Pudding with Boba

makes 4 small pudding cups

1 3/4 cup whole milk
2 tbsp white sugar
1 tbsp honey
3 Lipton black tea bags
1 package (1 tbsp) gelatin

1/2 cup dried boba/tapioca balls
3 cups water
1/4 cup brown sugar
  1. To make boba: In a medium pot, boil 3 cups of water and 1/4 cup brown sugar. When it boils, add the boba and let simmer in medium heat for 3 mins (it should float). Switch heat off and let sit for another few minutes while you prepare pudding
  2. In a small pot, mix milk, sugar, honey and gelatin. Add tea bags and heat until milk is bubbling at edges and everything is dissolved. Squeeze and remove tea bags. Allow to cool for a minutes
  3. Strain milk tea pudding mixture and pour equally into small pudding cups. Add 1 tbsp of prepared boba. Chill in refrigerator for at least 1-2 hours
  4. Serve with a dollop of honey and remaining boba balls

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Gouda Grilled Kim-Cheese Sandwich with Avo and Prosciutto

I'm stuck in the SICU again for 5 weeks, where our hours are 24hrs on/24hrs off. The hours blows, but I do get a day of sunlight and time to do normal human things like making doctor's appointments and going to the bank. The weather has been a snowy this week and luckily I went grocery shopping, because I am definitely not walking out in the mush!
Here's a sandwich I made on my off day! Lots of gouda cheese, prosciutto and avocado. The sautéed kimchi brings the acidity to help cut the greasiness. So good :)

Gouda Grilled Kim-Cheese Sandwich with Avo and Prosciutto

makes 1 sandwich

2 slices sourdough bread
1 clove garlic
1 pat of butter
3 slices of gouda cheese
1/4 cup kimchi, coarsely chopped
1 slice prosciutto
1/2 avocado, sliced lengthwise

  1. Rub garlic onto bread, or you can mince it and spread it on. Spread butter and toast to your liking
  2. Heat small pan with 1/2 tbsp sesame oil. Saute kimchi until slightly soft for 2-3 mins 
  3. Add on gouda to a slice of bread and allow to toast lightly as well to make it nice and soft
  4. Place on a plate to assemble sandwich. Add the warm kimchi on top of gouda, which will also help melt it
  5. Tear prosciutto to lay over kimchi and place avocado and bread on top. 
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