Posts tagged seafood
Crab and Corn Wontons with Tomato Butter Sauce
Crab and Corn Wontons with Tomato Butter Sauce - Eat Cho Food

So… everyone knows that Fall doesn’t OFFICIALLY start until the autumnal equinox, right? Right!? Everyone on the internet is jumping way too fast into buckets of pumpkins and apples. When we very well have a solid two and half weeks of summer left! And for the rest of us in the Bay Area, Summer is staying much longer than that. Or maybe we don’t care and sipping on pumpkin spice lattes, burning a pecan pie candle, and watching Hocus Pocus on repeat until Halloween provides some much needed comfort in these weird times. If that’s what you need, then I say “YOU DO YOU”!

You know what gives me comfort though? DUMPLINGS. Especially very summery dumplings like these Crab and Corn Wontons. OMG, don’t even get me started on that tomato butter sauce… I would drink an entire bowl of that stuff if I didn’t want to live long. Before I dive into these wontons, I just wanted to state for the record that Reuben and I are trying to be carb free for the month of September and it’s REALLY HARD. I’m especially hangry right now because I haven’t had breakfast yet and I so desperately wish we had some bread to toast up! Yesterday I made a cauliflower fried rice and it tastes good but fake rice just doesn’t cut it for me. Anyways, pray for me and send me your favorite carb free meals! I’ll just be investing in cauliflower this month.

Crab and Corn Wontons with Tomato Butter Sauce - Eat Cho Food
Crab and Corn Wontons with Tomato Butter Sauce - Eat Cho Food
Crab and Corn Wontons with Tomato Butter Sauce - Eat Cho Food

Summery Crab and Corn Wontons

Some people might read crab and immediately think it’s too fancy. Yes, crab meat can be a little pricey sometimes but you definitely don’t need to spend hours cooking fresh crab and plucking the meat out off the scary legs. My mom would always buy canned crab meat for her famous cheesey crab stuffed mushrooms, which inspired this wonton recipe from last year! The canned stuff actually tastes super good and saves you hours of your life that could be better spent eating dumplings. I bought 2 6oz cans from whole foods for about $6 each! Not bad honestly!

Once you get your hands on some canned crab meat you’re pretty much half way there to a super summery and flavor packed filling. All you do is add some fresh summer corn, scallions, and some simple seasonings and sauces. I tried this recipe with both charred and raw corn. When you have sweet in season corn it almost tastes better raw off the cob. I couldn’t stop snacking on it when I was cutting it up! The sweetness of the corns complements the natural salty brininess of the crab. Since everything in the filling is technically already cooked you can sneak in a quick bite before wrapper. So good!

Crab and Corn Wontons with Tomato Butter Sauce - Eat Cho Food
Crab and Corn Wontons with Tomato Butter Sauce - Eat Cho Food
Crab and Corn Wontons with Tomato Butter Sauce - Eat Cho Food

How to Wrap a Wonton

Wrapping a wonton is actually pretty easy. It’s definitely a lot easier to watch someone wrap one than it is to write it out, but I will try! If you want to see some videos, I have some wrapping wontons videos saved on my Instagram story highlights!

Step 1 : Set up your station

Prepare a bowl of cornstarch and water, which will act as your glue for the wrappers. Set aside a baking tray to place formed dumplings. Position your filling and wrappers in a convenient spot on your work surface and get wrapping!

Step 2 : Place a wrapper in your non-dominant hand so that it looks like a diamond. Place a teaspoon of filling in the center of your dumpling. Dab your finger in the cornstarch water and then trace 2 adjacent edges of the wrapper. Fold the wrapper over to form a triangle. Pinch the edges closed so they are tightly sealed.

Step 4 : Dab a little more cornstarch water on the folded corners and then fold the corners towards each other so they overlap and pinch to seal. The wonton is supposed to look like a nun’s cap, but I see little boats sometimes. Place formed wonton on a lined baking tray and repeat with remaining wrappers.

At this point you can freeze them solid on a baking sheet for future dumpling emergencies or you can boil them in some hot water and enjoy with your favorite sauce!

Crab and Corn Wontons with Tomato Butter Sauce - Eat Cho Food
Crab and Corn Wontons with Tomato Butter Sauce - Eat Cho Food

Easy Tomato Butter Sauce

This sauce is beyond easy to made. At first I wanted to made a miso brown butter sauce but I thought everything would look too pale and the heirloom tomatoes I bought from the farmers market were calling to me!

You start by melting some butter in a skillet. Then throw in the chopped up tomatoes and season with salt and pepper. Let everything simmer for 5 minutes. You’ll start to see the tomatoes break down. After 5 minutes smash the tomatoes with the back of a wooden spoon or spatula. Now the sauce will have a jam like consistency. Add in some water to loosen up the sauce a bit. Season again and let it all simmer for 5 more minutes until the sauce has thickened.

Place some tomato butter sauce in a bowl, plop some dumplings on top, and enjoy!

Crab and Corn Wontons with Tomato Butter Sauce - Eat Cho Food

Crab and Corn Wontons

serves 4

materials:

40 wonton wrappers
12 oz crab meat (about 2 cans of crab meat)
2 ears of fresh corn
3 green onion stalks - chopped
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp white pepper
2 tbsp cornstarch
1 tbsp oyster sauce
2 tsp sriracha

2 tbsp cornstarch + 2 tbsp water

steps:

  1. To make the wonton filling, drain any excess liquid from the crab meat. Add crab into a medium mixing bowl. Cut the kernels off 2 ears of corn and add corn into the bowl with the crabs. Add in chopped green onions, salt, white pepper, cornstarch, oyster sauce, and sriracha. Mix to combine.

  2. Mix together 2 tbsp cornstarch and 2 tbsp water in a small bowl. This is the glue for the wonton wrappers. Take one wonton wrapper and place a teaspoon of filling in the center. Dab your finger in the cornstarch water and then trace 2 adjacent edges of the wrapper. Fold the wrapper over to form a triangle. Pinch the edges closed so they are tightly sealed. Dab a little more cornstarch water on the folded corners and then fold the corners towards each other so they overlap and pinch to seal. Place formed wonton on a lined baking tray and repeat with remaining wrappers.

  3. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Place a few wontons in the pot at a time and boil for 3-4 minutes or until they float to the top. Scoop out the wontons with a fine mesh sieve or spider. Place in bowls and serve with tomato butter sauce, soy sauce, or chili oil.


Tomato Butter Sauce

tomato butter sauce:

1 stick of unsalted butter
2 medium tomatoes - diced
2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp white pepper
1 1/2 cup water

steps:

  1. Melt butter in a skillet over medium heat. Add tomatoes and season with salt and pepper. Simmer for 5 minutes, until the tomatoes start to break down. Smash the tomatoes with the back of a wooden spoon or spatula until smooth. Add water and continue to simmer for 5 more minutes until thick and smooth.

Coconut Sesame Ramen
Coconut Sesame Ramen - Eat Cho Food

If you’ve been reading this blog for a while, then you know that instant ramen is one of my favorite foods. I’ve literally been consuming it since I could conquer solid foods! My mom would make instant beef flavored ramen topped with spam and a fried egg pretty regularly. It was a quick, easy, and tasty meal that we always enjoyed. When I went to architecture school, I was sort of shocked that no one ever put toppings on their ramen. 

“How could you not even fry an egg to put on top?!”

“You’re literally going to eat ramen out of the styrofoam?!”

“What do you mean you don’t have your own personal noodle soup bowl complete with chopsticks and a soup spoon?!”

I had a lot of questions… and I felt like I needed to educate everyone who would listen to me about the endless possibilities of instant ramen. So, I had like 1 person who was interested. Still to this day, I ALWAYS have a few packages of instant ramen in our kitchen. They are perfect for quick breakfasts, a lazy lunch, or a salty late night treat after staying out late to go see a bluegrass concert. Okay, that last situation might only apply to Reuben and me. I always need to add toppings though. An egg at least to make it feel like a well rounded meal. You can add practically whatever you have in your pantry or fridge. For a complete bowl of ramen you need a protein and a vegetable (or something green) to compliment the noodles and soup.

Coconut Sesame Ramen - Eat Cho Food
Coconut Sesame Ramen - Eat Cho Food
Coconut Sesame Ramen - Eat Cho Food

Here are Some of My Favorite Ramen Toppings!

Proteins:

Spam - classic topping, don’t be afraid of the canned meat
Soft boiled egg - 6-7 minutes is perfect in my book
Fried Egg - The crispy edges are a great texture with the soft chewy noodles and soup!
Char Siu - expert level topping
Fish Tofu - sounds weird, but go buy some from your local asian market and thank me later
Regular Tofu - silken tofu is wonderful in soup!
Leftover rotisserie chicken - throw that leftover breast right in there!
Shrimp - might be my favorite!

Veggies:
Chinese Broccoli
Spinach
Carrots
Corn - I guess that’s a grain… but it’s still tasty!
Edamame
Mushrooms
Radishes 
Kale

For most of these veggies, you can just boil them in the broth to cook them!

Extras:

Nori Sheets - I always have some in my pantry
Furikake - also always in my pantry
Scallions - everything is better with scallions!
Sesame Seeds
Crushed Roasted Peanuts or Cashew - adds a nice texture
Citrus slices- only if it works with your soup flavor
Sambal/Chili Oil

Options are endless!

Coconut Sesame Ramen - Eat Cho Food
Coconut Sesame Ramen - Eat Cho Food
Coconut Sesame Ramen - Eat Cho Food

How to Make Your Instant Ramen Fancy! 

Choose your noodle.

For this Coconut Sesame Ramen, I started by using Ottogi Sesame Ramen, which is a brand from South Korea! Their noodles are probably the chewiest and most satisfying instant noodles I’ve ever encountered! It is always so disappointing when there are barely any noodles in the package and they end up tasting like limp cardboard. These are great! I encourage you to take a few minutes studying the instant ramen aisle of your local asian market. There are so many great options there!

Cook the noodles and the soup in separate pots.

It may seem like an unnecessary extra step for such a simple recipe, but trust me. Cooking the noodles in a separate pot and rinsing them under cold water will allow your noodles to stay super al dente. Once the noodles are combined with the broth they will continue to cook and we don’t want soggy noodles.

To make your soup broth, boil water, coconut milk, and the dried soup mix. Then add in your protein. In this case, we’re going to add some shrimp. The shrimp will impart a lot of great seafood flavor in your soup! If you’re going to add a vegetable that needs to soften, you would add it now too. Cook until all the contents are at your desired doneness.

Assemble your noodle bowl.

Place your noodle bundle in a bowl. Carefully pour the soup over the noodles. Then top with your protein, veggies, and extra toppings. You can either just throw everything in there or take an extra minute to compose everything for a quick Instagram! 

This Ottogi Coconut Sesame Ramen is something I wish I knew about when I was in college! The noodles have such a great texture. The soup is spicy, rich, and a little creamy from the coconut milk. And lastly, the toppings are fun and diverse, which make taking each bite of this ramen feel like a little flavor adventure! 

Coconut Sesame Ramen - Eat Cho Food
Coconut Sesame Ramen - Eat Cho Food
Coconut Sesame Ramen - Eat Cho Food

Coconut Sesame Ramen

serves 1

Materials:

1 package of Ottogi Sesame Ramen
1 ½ cup water - for soup
½ cup canned coconut milk
3 shrimps - peeled, but with tails and head still on 
Purple Daikon - thinly sliced
Radishes - thinly sliced
Lime wedge - for garnish
Nori Sheets - for topping
Scallion Greens - for topping

Steps:

  1. Bring a medium pot of water to a boil. Once boiling, add the ramen noodles into the water and cook for 2 minutes, until al dente. Drain and rinse noodles under cold water. Place drained noodles in a bowl.

  2. While the water is boiling in step 1, bring 1 ½ cups of water and coconut milk to a simmer. Add in dried soup mix and the shrimp. Boil for 5 minutes.

  3. Pour the soup over the cooked ramen noodles. Top with thinly sliced daikon and radishes, scallions, cooked shrimp, nori sheets. Finish with a squeeze of lime.

Thanks, Ottogi for sponsoring this post!

Crab Salad Tostadas
Crab Salad Tostadas
Crab Salad Tostadas
Crab Salad Tostadas
Crab Salad Tostadas
Crab Salad Tostadas
Crab Salad Tostadas
Crab Salad Tostadas

Hi, friends! How is Fall treating you? Isn't it crazy how after a long Labor Day weekend spent outdoors, gardening, cleaning, sleeping in, bbq-ing, and fantasy footballing, that it all of a sudden feels like pumpkin spice and sweater season?? San Francisco doesn't really have seasons, except our Indian Summer should be starting soon... I don't know though. This past week has been chilly and the sun is leaving us way too early in the day. This seasonal change does allow me to breakout all the cozy blanket sweaters I've been antsy to wear again! I'll take any opportunity to wear a blanket out in public. The autumnal equinox is not until September 22nd though! So we still technically have a few more days of Summer! That is plenty of time to squeeze in a couple more tomato toasts and to buy all the pluots at the farmer's market. Have you had a pluot?! I feel like I'm always talking about them on Instagram, but I'm seriously obsessed. It's the best fruit and one of the things I miss most about summer. Sorry, I know this is not a pluot blog.

Should we talk about crab salad? When I was a little 90s kid, my mom would make crab salad with imitation crab meat and serve it up with buttery club crackers and it was the most amazing snack! I can't remember the last time my mom actually made crab salad. But I'm going to call her and tell her she needs to soon. It's so good! I don't know if imitation crab meat was just super popular in the 90s and early 00s and then sort of disappeared from the culinary limelight in recent time, but it needs to come back out! When we were in Mexico City a few weeks back, we saw surimi (fancy way of saying imitation crab) salad tostadas at a whole bunch of places. We didn't actually order it, only because I felt like we need to be adventurous in Mexico and order things like octopus. At the tostada stalls, they would display the crab salad as a mini mountain of crab. It was so glorious and temping... I couldn't shake it from my head. So when we got home I wanted to try recreating the concept but use the nostalgic flavors I remember from the 90s.

It turns out crab salad is stupid easy to make. All it consists of is crab, mayo, onions, salt and pepper. It really is that simple. I wanted to make my life more difficult though, so I made mayo from scratch! Making your mayo makes such a huge difference in this recipe! I added a bit of lemon juice and grated in fresh garlic, which just takes it up a level. It's totally fine if you just use store bought mayo! Just make sure it is fresh. The crab salad is super creamy with a slight crunch from the onions. Then it's plops on top of a super crispy fried tortilla with a slice of avocado. The combo of everything makes for such a great textural contrast and flavor symphony. It's like an elevated crab salad and club cracker snack. Gosh, I could have ate a million of these tostadas! If our indian summer does show up, I'll definitely be whipping up another full tray of these. Thankfully I have blanket sweaters to hide under : ) 

Thanks a ton to Louis Kemp for sponsoring this post and rekindling my love of crab salad - I'm obessed!


Crab Salad Tostadas

makes 12 small tostadas - serves 4

materials:

2 8oz packages of Louis Kemp Flake Imitation Crab
1/2 cup mayonnaise (link to homemade recipe)
3 tbsp finely diced red onion + extra for garnish
2 green onion stalks chopped (white and green parts) + extra for garnish
1/4 tsp salt - adjust per taste, amount varies depending on mayo used
dash of white pepper
dash of cayenne
1 avocado halved and sliced
12 small corn tortillas
canola oil for frying

limes for garnish
microgreens or cilantro for garnish  

steps:

1. Place crab meat in a medium bowl. Break up the flakes into smaller pieces with your hands. Add in mayonnaise, red onion, and green onions. Give it a good mix. Season with salt, white pepper, and cayenne. Give it another good mix and then cover with plastic wrap. Chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.

2. While the crab salad is chilling, fry up your tortillas. Pour canola oil into a skillet, enough that you have about an inch of oil. Heat over medium high heat. You want it hot enough that the tortillas sizzle immediately as they hit the oil. Place tortillas in the hot oil and fry up for 1 minute on each side. Place fried tortillas on a paper towel lined plate. Repeat with remaining tortillas.

3. Assemble your tostadas. Place a scoop of crab salad on a tostada. Place a slice of avocado on top. Garnish with some red onions, green onions and micro greens. Squeeze a bit of lime juice on top and enjoy!

Crab Salad Tostadas