Posts tagged eggs
Grandpa's Scrambled Eggs
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Do you remember the first thing you learned how to cook? I have a super hazy and possibly slightly reconstructed memory of my grandpa teaching me how to whisk eggs with chopsticks when I was a little. Scrambled eggs were the first thing I ever learned how to cook. Every single time I make them I remember him telling me that a good whisk is all in the wrist and that if you move it just so, you won't make a huge mess. It makes me smile every single time I whip up these eggs for breakfast. You probably already know how to make scrambled eggs. Who knows?! Maybe you don't. But here is a recipe, and I really just wanted an excuse to tell you about the person who instilled in me my love of food.

I'm the most sentimental person you will ever meet and the holidays make me extra sentimental and sappy. This post might be an epic ramble as I spiral into an emotional tailspin. You've been warned. Around this time of year my homesickness reaches an all time high and I start to tear up at restaurants if I see a big Asian family out eating dinner together. I'm instantly balling if there are grandparents surrounded by little grand-babies. Gah, it gets me. I miss my family all the time. I grew up in a pretty close knit family and I'm the only one not in Ohio. My entire mom's side of the family (parents, brother, aunts, uncles, cousins, grandma, errbody) lives in the Cleveland area, with the exception of an aunt who lives in Columbus. Family dim sum, lunches, and dinners were constantly happening. We were always together and moved around in a pack. For the first decade of my life, I grew up seeing everyone almost daily at my family's restaurant. At the time, I definitely did not appreciate it, but now as a somewhat-adult, I'm really thankful to have grown up in a restaurant surrounded by family.

Cooking and eating food that reminds me of them makes me feel connected to them somehow. When I whisk eggs I think of my grandpa. When I chop vegetables I hear my mom telling me to tuck my fingers in so I don't lose a finger. When I have chocolate ice cream I think of my other grandpa and how he kicked my ass at climbing a giant hill (it was really a tall city park) in Hong Kong, and once I finally met up with him at the top he was peacefully enjoying a scoop of chocolate ice cream. Food is so powerful that way. Every recipe comes with a narrative or a memory. My absolute favorite stories are the ones my mom would tell me of her growing up or of my grandpa when he was little. Like the tasty after school snacks her grandma would make her. Or how my grandpa would sell peanuts when he was a little boy to make money and that's why he is so good at math. I could listen to these stories all day!

My Grandpa, or my Goong Goong as I would call him, was pretty awesome. He was an only child supporting his single mom, who created quite a life for himself and a big family of his own. He was a teacher and calligrapher back in Hong Kong, but he decided to move to America for a better life for his family. He and my grandma, his mom, my mom, and her 4 siblings all flew over from Hong Kong and landed in Chicago, where they lived for a year before settling down in Cleveland. Like so many immigrants, he started working in restaurants. While he learned how to cook he also learned all the intricacies of running his own business. Eventually he opened up his own restaurant, and continued to open and operate them until he retired. He worked so hard and was such a great cook! It makes my eyes all teary when I think about how much he accomplished and what a great life he gave my family. Gosh.

He wanted me to study something related to computers when I went to college. I probably should have listened to him, but I wanted to do something more creative. Architecture happened. Now food has my focus, but I think he left such an amazing framework for me to do something with food. My entire life, he was always sharing food with me, whether it was plates of food or recipes. I would sit next to him at dim sum and he would whisper in my ear how the different dumplings were made. I was young and dumb and didn't retain that information, but I remember him telling me! I would giggle and then get distracted by a new dumpling coming to the table. We would share a crispy taro dumpling (our favorite) and I would ramble on about something silly like Pokemon or try to annoy my brother. That's normally how dim sum went.

He passed away 8 years ago around Christmas. I remember being in the hospital room with my entire family, we move around in a pack remember, and as my grandpa passed away I had never experienced sadness like that before. But at the same time I don't think I have ever experienced my family love each other that way. I'll never forget how that felt. Just like how I will never forget my grandpa's giant smile, the way he sang my Chinese name, and the way he taught me how to whisk my eggs and appreciate food. I miss him so much.

In a way I think my grandpa, and the rest of my family, is the reason why I cook, why I write, and why I share. I want to share the food of my family. I want to attempt to recreate the centuries old recipes my grandma makes from memory (it's really hard). But I also want to share my own personal experiences with food and create an archive of sorts for my future grandbabies to read about 50 years from now. Gaaaaaaah! Tailspinning... (compose yourself, you're almost done!) Okay. Anyway, all I wanted to say is that my hope for this blog is to create an archive and celebrate the joy and the stories behind food!

Sorry if this got really sad, but it cheered up a little didn't it?? If you have any stories you'd like to share I would LOVE to hear them! You can post them in the comments below. I hope you have a lovely beginning of December!


Grandpa's Scrambled Eggs

Materials:

2 eggs

1 tbsp milk

1 tsp olive oil

salt+pepper

Steps:

1. Crack eggs into a small bowl, sprinkle some salt and pepper, and add milk. Give it a quick whisk.

2. Heat a skillet over low heat. Add oil and egg mixture to the pan while it is only slightly warm. Continue to slowly whisk or scrape the eggs as they gradually cook and set up. o

3. Enjoy as is or on some buttered toast with hot sauce and green onions!
 


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wee dumpling with grandpa

Greek Yogurt with Spiced Sweet Potatoes and Fried Egg
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Is it Friday yet? The Cho-Alt household is a little run down this week. Reuben has been home sick with a cold the last couple of days and I am guzzling emergen-c like pixy stix(s?) to get rid of the weird tickle in my throat and the cloudy feeling in my head. We just inhaled chicken pho from Y&Y and feel about 5% better. If you live in San Francisco, you NEED to go to Y&Y or their sister restaurant Yummy Yummy. It is hands down the best pho restaurants in the city! I'm grateful everyday that we only live 3 blocks from Y&Y and can eat it in comfort of our own home 😊

I can't wait until Friday so I can go to sleep at 10pm and not wake up until 10am. I know, my life is exciting. Hopefully, by this weekend I will be feeling closer to 90% so that I can fully enjoy some girl time with my old work ladies and make a killer breakfast this weekend. The spring time is definitely inspiring me to play with all the beautiful fruit and springy greens. I was looking at my past recipes and everything seems a little... tan. I gotta work some spring colors into EatChoFood!

I was trying to add a pop of orange to this dish by way of sweet potato, but I was a doofus and bought a white sweet potato by accident. Bah. Oh well. It still tastes amazing! You're just going to have to accept the tan aesthetic for a little bit longer. Neutrals are trendy still, right?

I'm keeping this post super short because I'm feeling weird/sick/delirious at the moment and it's almost bed time... 10pm. But I hope you find some time to make this cute breakfast. I would definitely pay $15 for this at a trendy brunch spot. It's a savory take on a yogurt parfait. The tanginess of the greek yogurt pairs beautifully with the sweetness of the potatoes and the lemony-ness of the sumac. The flavors are just beautiful. A fried eggs makes everything better. The yolk, as always, becomes a dreamy sauce to mix in with the yogurt and potatoes. I might meal prep enough of this to have for breakfast all next week. That's so adult!

Okay, bye. Need. To. Rest. And. Become. A. Human. Again. I promise a more captivating post in the future!


Greek Yogurt with Spiced Sweet Potatoes and Fried Egg

serves 2


Steps:

1. Peel your sweet potato and cut into 1/2" cubes. Pour olive oil into skillet and heat over medium high heat. Once the pan is hot, add sweet potatoes to the skillet. You should hear them sizzle. Toss the potatoes in olive oil and season with sumac, cumin, smoked paprika, and a generous sprinkling of salt and pepper. Leave potatoes alone for 3-4 minutes to let them get crispy on one side. Toss potatoes and let sit again until sides on consistently crispy. This process takes about 10-12 minutes. When the potatoes are cooked, removed potatoes from skillet and set aside on a paper towel lined dish.

2. In the same skillet, add a tiny splash of olive oil to the remaining oil in pan. Once hot, crack 2 eggs into the pan. Allow to cook until over easy. and until the edges are crispy, about 3-4 minutes. Season with a pinch of salt and pepper.

3. While your eggs are cooking, dollop and smear about 1/3 cup of greek yogurt on each plate. You can add more or less depending on personal preference.

4. Add spiced sweet potatoes over the yogurt and place your fried eggs on top once cooked. Sprinkle a dash of sumac and herbs over each dish. I used basil and and green onions (I know it's not an herb), because that is what I had on hand.

5. Enjoy your morning!

Materials:

Plain Greek Yogurt

1 Medium Sweet Potato (orange, white, or purple)

2 Tbsp Olive Oil

2 tsp Sumac + more for garnish

1 tsp cumin

1/2 tsp smoked paprika

Salt + Pepper

2 eggs

Herbs (whatever you have on hand)

Brunch at Home for Two

Give yourself a high five. Buy that almond croissant to go with your coffee. Extend your lunch break by 15 glorious minutes. You deserve it. You have successfully made it to Thursday and the weekend is only a couple desk hours away! You're going to make it!

I'm sure 99.9% of you share this sentiment: I LIVE for the weekends. The weekends are when I get to feel human again. I paint and draw while the sun is shining. I test and photograph recipes, also while the sun is shining. Most importantly, I get to make a decent breakfast in peace.

Throughout the work week my mornings are hectic because 99.9% of the time I am running late to work, I'm squished into a bus that's going about a block a minute, my hair is still wet, and when I get to my desk I'm either having a granola bar or an instant oatmeal packet for breakfast. I know that this is easily preventable if I just wake up earlier... but who does that? Anyways, I'm not a fan of a sad desk breakfast.

Breakfast is really important to me. Sometimes I have a second breakfast, that's how much I love it. It's my favorite meal because it is really the only composed meal that you can have sweet and savory share a plate (I don't know, does a slice of pizza with a piece of chocolate cake sound good together? Kinda........). Cooking is my therapy, so preparing a thoughtful and peaceful breakfast also puts me into a really great mindset for the rest of the day.

To get my mental state right, I've started a routine of going to the Clement Street Farmer's Market every Sunday morning. I put on pants, walk a few blocks, try all the fruit samples (THE ORANGES ARE INSANE RIGHT NOW), contemplate if I should buy the cheese danish from the bread stand, creep on the babies and puppies everywhere, and pick up some produce for the following week. Then I head back to our apartment to make a simple but filling breakfast for Reuben and I. We inhale our breakfast, then he studies or watches sports and I paint and write silly puns. We might take a break in the middle to walk and get some coffee. Then it's dinner time and we watch Worst Cooks in America. That's our Sunday!

This past Sunday, our breakfast was Honey Ricotta Toast on Levain (is Levain just the French word  for Sourdough? Can someone explain the difference?), slices of beautiful Cara Cara and Blood Oranges, and a fried egg. It's simple, pretty, and only takes about 10 minutes to whip up. Give it a try!

This upcoming weekend is not going to be quite as peaceful. We are hosting Superbowl Sunday (I'm making another football field cake!) AND I'll be baking up a storm for the first Babes Brunch of 2017!

Wish me luck. I'm probably going to be covered in flour. What are your plans for the weekend?? Don't forget to make breakfast!


Honey Ricotta Toast for 2

Materials :

2 thick slices of crusty bread (sourdough is my favorite!)

1 Tbsp of butter

Whole Milk Ricotta

Honey

Pinch of Sea Salt

 

Steps : 

  1. Melt your butter in a skillet on medium heat. Place slices of bread in the skillet and let bread soak up the butter on one side for a seconds. Flip over and let the other side of the bread toast for 3-4 minutes or until golden brown. Repeat with other side.

  2. Place your toast on plates or a cutting board. Smear however much ricotta you like on the toast with a knife.

  3. Drizzle honey over your toasts and sprinkle a pinch of sea salt on on each one.

  4. Pair with some fruit, salty meat, or eggs and enjoy!

Have a good morning!