Thursday, December 28, 2017

My sweet friend brought me snacks back from Japan that were a real treat.  I received these Kabaya Pureral Gummy from her.  As soon as you tear the top seal, you can smell the fragrant grape flavor! You just might salivate instantaneously from the scent!
Inside the delicious jelly shell is a gooey grape soft jelly.  It's almost like biting into a chewy grape, but even better! :) Leave it to the Japanese for some fun innovative treats.  I'd definitely pick more of this up if I go back to Japan or if they are sold here too.

Monday, December 18, 2017

After coming back from Japan, I've been craving okonomiyaki.  It's a specialty that came out of Osaka, where I visited. I found this delectable hole in the wall that spoke no English at all and only had a Japanese menu.  There's not many places to get okonomiyaki, even in So Cal!
So what's a girl to do when she has a craving?  Make her own! Answer solved! I've never made okonomiyaki and decided to do it on a whim.  Luckily OtaJoy by Otafuku at the Winter Fancy Food Show and they make it easy to create at home.  They have instructions on the back to show how to make it at home with some simple steps.  All you have to do is buy the few ingredients you need to create this masterpiece.  It's pretty much: pork belly, cabbage, their flour, their sauce, egg, and water.  
Even if it says you can use salad mixes, be sure to take the time and cut the cabbage.  It's the traditional way and the best tasting.  Of course I put extra pork belly inside.  Instead of putting it on layer by layer, I chop up the pork belly and mix it all in.  I don't have the traditional grill they use at restaurants so I just use a normal pan and lots of oil to pan fry the ingredients.  Be sure to use a paper towel to pat down the excess oil before you drizzle the sauces.  I was too lazy to find bonito flakes so I used some furikake to add more flavor.  So tasty! I make it all the time now :D

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Gourmet Pigs gave me a few choices to meet up and I decided to choose Mr. Matcha because of the name.  Ever since Japan I've been craving matcha so I thought this was the perfect place.  Then I went online to look at what they served. At first I was kind of disappointed in the choices but I was glad to be proven wrong :).
I got their matcha and black sesame soft serve in their black cone.  The color combo was fun, but most importantly I liked the taste.  They claim to serve organic grade A matcha and the flavor was decently strong, unlike some other soft serve places.  The black sesame had a nice deep aromatic flavor.  I would definitely skip the come next time because if you eat slow it becomes soggy and it has no special flavor.  It is great for photos so I decided to get the cone ^_~. 

Mr. Matcha
12926 Main St
Garden Grove, CA 92840

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Before I left for Japan, I wanted to buy the cute sushi cupcake in honor of our trip and pre-celebration of Ms. Lin Guide's b-day.  It's technically after mine but she won't be around so I celebrated it early lol.
The store is tucked away in a business strip mall so it can be easily missed and parking was a little difficult.  Keep an eye out for the suite number as your guide.  They have a bunch of cupcakes on display as you go in.  Some were super cute like the Cookie Monster and the poop emoticon lol.  The other cupcakes looked tasty too but I was on a mission.
I didn't see any of the sushi cupcakes that I specifically came for! Luckily they still had some left in the back stored.  Apparently they are not always available and can run out so be sure to call ahead of time if that is what you are looking for.  They only had the box set, which is pretty pricey for the size.  It's about the size of a bigger cut sushi roll piece and about the price of a cupcake.  Still, it's worth the experience for the fun and cuteness.  

All in all they have some cute items and were friendly.  Most importantly the cupcakes were not bad.  They were sweet and had a nice smooth texture.  You can tell the used good ingredients.  The only con was the price of that box.  It's almost a better deal to get a cupcake, size wise. 

Simply The Cupcake
24002 Via Fabricante, Ste 401
Mission Viejo, CA 92691

Thursday, September 28, 2017

Sorry for the long hiatus.  It's been a long road to recovery but in the meantime I still tried to fit in some good and fun :).
For this year's birthday, I decided to take one item off the bucket list and it is to go to Japan! Return to my so call roots lol.
Here is just a small preview of some of the travel and fun.  Stay tuned for more updates! 

P.S. Even in September it is sooooooooo hot and humid in Japan.  Try to go when the weather is better or more colorful scenery, sure it may be more expensive but it'll be more enjoyable and worthwhile! That's what I've learned as will pass on this advice 😇

Saturday, May 13, 2017

Prime Rib has finally come to BJ's Brewhouse! Who doesn't love a nice juicy thick slice of Prime Rib.  They recently introduced it to their weekend menu and at a great price! Not only do you get a 14 oz Prime Rib, you get a choice of soup or salad and a pizookie! Everything you want in a meal and more for the sweet price of $26.95

I was lucky enough to be invited to attend on National Prime Rib Day to try their new menu, which is perfect for Mother's Day or any weekend family gathering.  To start the meal off right, I decided to try their Rootbeer Float made with their house-made sodas.  

They had a few choices for the soup and I decided to try their Roasted Tomato soup, which is always a solid choice.  For me, I think of tomato soup as comfort food.  It's simple but that only makes it harder to perfect.  The portion was generous and flavorful.

For the main course, you also get to choose two sides.  With Prime Rib, I always default to potatoes.  Meat and potatoes go together harmoniously.  I asked for rare plus and they actually brought a pretty nicely cooked cut.  It was juicy and quite a big portion.  They also offer creamed horseradish or just horseradish to complement the dish.  For me, this is a definite must.  

The pièces de résistance is their famous Pizookie! You can never go wrong with this.  Who doesn't like a freshly baked cookie topped with ice cream! Warning.... sugar overload and delicious goodness! With the meal you actually get a full size pizookie with each meal, which is pretty generous.  I always default for a black and white, which is chocolate chip and white chocolate macadamia nut cookie.  Since there were two of us, I decided to get a full white chocolate macadamia nut and try their triple chocolate.  

All in all I think it is a great deal and definitely worth a few visits if you love Prime Rib.  I debated on getting some appetizers, but I was glad that I wasn't too greedy because the meal deal is actually quite filling! I'll probably be back with different people to enjoy their new offers.  In fact, I am having a craving right now! lol

BJ's Restaurant & Brewhouse
24032 El Toro Rd, 
Laguna Hills, CA 92653
(949) 900-2670
BJ's Restaurant and Brewhouse Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Ms. Lin Guide informed me that the instant noodles sold in Taiwan are much better there than in the US. Being a little skeptical on how instant noodles can be that great, I wanted to satisfy my curiosity. Not that I had any extra meals left to eat some instant noodles, nor did I have a kitchen to do so... I still made sure to grab one! We decided to grab one in a bowl for convenience. Luckily our hotel room provided a hot water boiler.
We chose one at random and this package looked pretty tasty. It was a pork flavored instant noodle that comes with real packaged pork, which is something the US does not offer. Supposedly the instant noodles in Taiwan are to die for... and they were right! We made this bowl in our hotel room and had it for a 'breakfast' snack before starting the day. The flavor was on point and the meat was tasty. I don't know if I can ever have the ones we sell in the US anymore.
Having meat pre-packaged sounded weird but cool at the same time. I am sure it probably couldn't pass the FDA standards, but they really should sell these kind of instant noodles here! No wonder people from Taiwan bring these with them when they travel. I would too! In fact, Ms. Lin Guide and I brought two small packs for the plane ride back. The food on United Airlines was so bad that we had to pre-plan for the trip back home and I bet the others on the plane were jealous!

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Fantastic Donuts are just too cute! I saw the pics on Instagram and have bookmarked the place for a long time. Since I promised to meet Gourmet Pigs for lunch in LA, I decided that I need to make an extra stop since I drove all the way up.  😁
I like to buy goods and I looooove cute things, so this place was perfect! Even though I was the only one eating them, I needed at least 3 for selfies! Lol To be honest it isn't about the food as much as it is about the super cuteness!!!
The man working there was very friendly and probably used to people coming for the cute donuts.  I asked for his help and he was happy to oblige.  He explained the different choices.  I was really looking for the cutest donut! Lol I even bought flavors I detest, purely because I wanted the cute face! 😇
I got the super adorable pig, cow, and fox set.  How can you not buy the donuts with a face a small donut hole decorated with an animal face in between! Well I couldn't, so I loaded up on donuts :).  They actually tasted good as well, so that was a bonus.  I ate it over 3 days and even on the 3rd day, it tasted fine.  You wouldn't think this place is a hole in the wall but it's in a tiny plaza in K-town.  Very packed plaza and small place, but worth it for the selfie photos and cuteness! 😉

Fantastic Donuts
1101 S Vermont Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90006
(213) 252-5237
Fantastic Donut Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Monday, January 2, 2017

There has been a plethora of restaurants opening up in the center off of Lake Forest. I decided to try out the Oke Poke with some friends because it was quick and should be reasonably priced. They weren't too busy and the line seemed to be moving steadily. It's an assembly line ordering system that is super popular these day. At each station you tell them what items you would like added and the only difference in pricing at the end will be how many scoops of raw fish you receive.
The place was very clean and new. They were handing samples out but of course not while I was in line >=P. lol I decided to go for tortilla chips as my carb because I was more in a nacho mood. There are pre-made bowls that you can choose from but I am a rebel and like to mix it up!
Next you can choose your add ons : Onions, Cucumber, Scallions, Ginger, Seaweed, Wasabi, Crab, Masago, Bean Sprouts, and Avocado. I got everything except the ginger, cucumber, and bean sprouts. It was nice that they had the crab and avocado option without additional charge. Besides, these are really filler items that make the bowl look more plentiful.
Most important comes the fish that you would like to select : Ahi Tuna, Salmon, Spicy Tuna, Albacore, Yellow Tail, Shrimp, Scallops, Tako. I chose to have the maximum amount of fish in my poke bowl... duh! lol I chose the salmon, spicy tuna, yellow tail, albacore, and scallop for my bowl. The scallop was not the freshest so I may skip that next time. They are baby scallops that you can pick up from any supermarket.
Now it is time to pick the flavor of your bowl. You can choose from these sauces : Oke, Heat, Spicy Mayo, Okeyaki, Miso, Oke Sesame. I will tell you right now that I chose EVERYTHING lol! The only thing I didn't want was too much heat because it would drown out too much of the flavor. Not that having every sauce didn't do that already, but it was flavorful in a good way! If you want a flavor blast then this combo is the right choice for you!
For the finishing touch, you can choose the toppings you would like : Toasted Sesame Seeds, Crunchy Onion, Garlic Flakes, Furikake, Chili Flakes. I got everything except the chili flakes because those tend to get stuck in my teeth or mouth. The garlic flakes are really garlic chips that are WONDERFUL! PS I love garlic!
My friends decided to go light and just have sesame oil on their fish, which they were just okay with. When you put so little sauce and flavor then the natural taste of the fish is the main seasoning. Unfortunately for them, the fish was not necessarily super fresh so they were a little let down. For poke places, I wouldn't expect them to use the best quality for their poke bowls of course.
They tried mine and thought it tasted good. In reality, all my sauces and add ons covered any fishy taste. O=D This is not true poke of course. More like the Chipotle of poke where they mix everything together and call it so. Still, it hits the spot sometimes and the prices are reasonable for raw fish. I'd probably come back here in the future.

Oke Poke
23646 Rockfield Blvd Ste 604 
Lake Forest, CA 92630

Blog Widget by LinkWithin