Archive for the ‘American’ Category

I feel like eggs benedict is what classy people order at brunch in the city. At least that is how this dish makes me feel when I see it on a menu. While brunch is definitely a thing on the west coast, it is almost a part of life here on the east. You won’t hear any complaints from me, since the combination of hollandaise sauce, poached eggs, and a mimosa can be either the beginning of a great weekend, or the bookend to a fabulous night out.


Crab Cake Florentine at Honey Honey Cafe in San Francisco: Poached eggs, crab cakes, spinach, and an English muffin with a side of tangy spiced potatoes.


Eggs Chesapeake at The Old Ebbitt Grill in Washington, DC: Poached eggs, jumbo lump crab cakes, English muffin, and old bay spiced hollandaise sauce, with a side of cheesy grits.

2014-07-12 11.14.05

Benedict Johnny at Jane in New York City: Poached eggs, chicken sausage, tomato hollandaise sauce over crispy polenta cakes, with a side of home fried potatoes and peppers.

There might be a day where I get pancakes instead, but right now I choose brunch places based on their eggs benedict options!


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It’s hard to believe that it has been more than a year since my last post.

It’s been a busy year, full of trans-pacific moves, goodbyes, hellos, and a lot of yet to be documented eating adventures!

Why not start off with a shave ice review?

I love all forms of ice dessert and syrup, including kakigori (and here), halo halo, ais cacang, and pat bingsu.

But the ice dessert that rules them all? Hawaiian style shave ice! The texture of the ice, made by “shaving” it off of a large rotating block, is lighter and much smaller than crushed ice. This creates more areas for the syrup to flow into, and not just collect at the bottom of your cup or bowl. The ice is then lightly shaped into a large softball sized ball. Then freshly made syrups and a quick swirl of condensed milk are added on top, and a scoop of ice cream at the bottom if you are so inclined.

My favorite is a combination of lemon-line, blue raspberry, and cherry, which usually means I end up with a well earned purple tongue afterwards.

RockinIce Truck @ Los Angeles, California

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Do you know the happy feeling you get when you dream about eating something all day…and then your dream becomes reality?

For some reason I woke up this morning craving scrambled eggs and toast, but I had to run off to work with just a mandarin orange thrown into my bag. I thought about fluffy just slightly set eggs and crunchy toast until lunch, and though today’s lunch of soup and pasta was good, it did nothing for my craving. So when I got home, I was on a mission to make eggs and toast for dinner, and ended up eating them as I edited some of my grad school essays.

I like my scrambled eggs to be just set and with plenty of salt, pepper and butter.

Here are the steps to how I make scrambled eggs:


  • 2-3 eggs
  • 1 tbsp salted butter
  • salt and pepper

1. In a frying pan, set on the lowest possible heat, melt a generous amount of butter. I usually use about a tbsp of salted butter. Yes, I know that seems like a lot, but I never said my scrambled eggs were healthy >:)

2. While the butter is melting, lightly beat 2-3 whole eggs in a bowl.

3. Once the butter is melted in the pan, swirl the pan to make sure the butter is evenly coated and then sprinkle in salt and pepper.

4. Gently pour in the eggs (Yup, no milk to be found in this recipe)

5. Do not raise the heat, and using a wooden spatula, continuously scrape around the edges and stir the eggs.

6. Cook for about 4-5 minutes or until the eggs seem to be halfway set. Turn off the heat and move eggs to a plate. They might seem a bit underdone, but they will continue to set a bit more as they cool. Add more salt and pepper if you like.






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sugar cookie
Sometimes things happen in life that kind of knock you out of your regular routine, and it takes you a little bit to get back into the swing of things. Baking delicious things that simultaneously heat my apartment and make it smell like warm butter, sugar and vanilla is my way of getting back a sense of normalcy.

This recipe makes sugar cookies that are slightly crisp on the outside and soft in the middle. They are simple and not perfect, but exactly what I wanted to munch on while curled up with some tea and watching back episodes of Good Eats.


  • 100g butter, salted, softened
  • 200g powdered sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 250g flour
  • 20g baking powder
  • 1tsp salt
  • 1tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp almond extract
  • 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg

1. Preheat oven to 170C. In a medium bowl, cream softened butter and powdered sugar together until well combined, and until it lightens in color and is slightly fluffy. (use a stand mixer if you like)
2. Mix in eggs, one at a time until well combined.
3. Stir in vanilla extract, almond extract and nutmeg
4. In a separate bowl, stir together the flour, baking power and salt, then add it to the butter and sugar mixture. Stir well.
5. Use a spoon or cookie scoop to drop roughly golf ball sized balls of dough onto a parchment paper lined baking sheet, and bake for 10-12 minutes, or until the cookies are just about to turn a pale golden brown. Bake less for softer cookies, and a bit longer if you like your cookies crisp.

**while I tend to just eat these cookies as they are, I’m pretty sure they would be fantastic frosted, or rolled in sugar as well.

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Cheese crackers
Living in Japan, I have a love and hate (but mostly love) relationship with Costco. They have a food court that brings me back to the states, and the sight of 100 count boxes of Tootsie pops and 5 lb boxes of chocochip cookies makes me nostalgic about college and the all mighty purchase order.

The area where I grew up didn’t have a Costco nearby, so when I went for the first time, I was romanced by the tasty polish dogs (only a buck fifty, and it comes with a drink!) and the sheer fact that I could buy a 10 pound can of ketchup, 50 black Sharpies, a sofa, and pumpkin pie the size of a large pizza if I so desired. In college, I had a job that required me to buy food to feed large quantities of people at a time, and for a while, purchasing 4 flats of muffins, and 2 lb cans of hot cocoa mix was normal. Oversized food is one thing, Costco sized food is another. For some reason, I find ridiculously large food, or large quantities of food inherently comical and interesting. (on the flip side, I also find extra small food funny and amazing as well :P)

 So what does Costco have to do with cheese crackers? As my mother says, I sometimes have eyes bigger than my stomach. The last time I went to Costco in Japan, I was persuaded into buying a 2 lb brick of sharp cheddar cheese. (they didn’t have to try hard) I think you can guess where this goes…but the short of it is I ended up having a half a block left, and needed to use it all quickly before the cheese spoiled. I did think about just gnawing on the block, but decided that cheese crackers were the more socially acceptable option.


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Lucky Pierrot is a fast food restaurant chain only found in Hakodate, Hokkaido which serves some seriously tasty burgers and fries. We stopped there for a late dinner on our way around the northern most island of Japan, and only an incoming hurricane stopped us from going there again on the way back to mainland Honshu. Believe me, since we got back, I’ve looked for other locations, hoping in vain to eat there again. Unfortunately the chiikigentei 地域限定 or limited to region status of Lucky Pierrot is no joke. They have over 10 locations, none of which are outside of Hakodate.

While searching for Lucky Pierrot online, I was surprised to read that the restaurant chain has had some controversy in the past, mostly because they had a whale meat burger on the menu. The hunting of whales is a touchy issue between Japan and the rest of the world, and in general, I try to avoid eating things that are on the endangered species list. To be honest though, I did not even notice the くじら kujira whale burger on the menu, because I was too busy trying to wrap my head around how one restaurant can serve hamburgers, curry rice, and spring rolls on the same menu. Looking at their website online now, it seems they no longer serve a whale burger, though they do have a scallop burger, a sweet and sour pork burger and a Genghis Khan (lamb) burger on the menu.

Serious environmental issues aside, the food we did eat was good. Very good. Which is probably why Lucky Pierrot has won the best regional hamburger restaurant in Japan award for multiple years running. (Yes, there is a ranking for that.)

The Chinese Chicken Burger is their #1 selling menu item. It’s 3 large pieces of chicken deep fried and covered in what tastes like kung pao sauce (hence the Chinese part, I suppose) sandwiched with lettuce and copius amount of mayonaisse, in a sesame seed bun. The slightly spicy and sweet sauce complimented the freshly fried chicken, and the chewy bun was the perfect thing to contain the messy sandwich. I would have gladly eaten the chicken just by itself, but the combination of bun, lettuce, mayo and chicken was really satisfying.

I could almost feel my arteries shaking in fear, but pressed on and also tried the Lucky Pierrot special fries. From the menu photo, my friend thought they might be the elusive poutine. However, I was pleasantly surprised to get freshly fried thick cut french fries topped with not the conventional gravy and cheese curds, but a concentrated curry sauce and a mild cheese sauce. It reminded me of eating cheesy chips after a night out, the cheese complimenting the sweet Japanese style curry very well.

I couldn’t leave the shop without one of Lucky Pierrot’s shakes, which come in the normal vanilla, chocolate and strawberry flavours, as well as some seasonal varieties, including this black sesame shake that I ordered. I love all things black sesame, or 黒ごま kurogoma , and this shake was perfect. The shake was thick enough to hold a straw upside down, and had flecks of ground black sesame seeds stired. Don’t let the greyish color of the shake throw you off, it was really delicious.

I was sad we didn’t have the chance to go back so I could try the yuzu ,Japanese citron, shake and get another order of Lucky Pierrot fries.
If you happen to find yourself in Hakodate, I really reccomend you give Lucky Pierrot or LaPi ラピ a try.

Lucky Pierrot@ Hakodate, Hokkaido, Japan

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When I heard that Bubby’s Pie Co. had opened up a temporary branch in Yokohama, I discovered the amount of pie in my life was seriously lacking and headed there for a slice right away.

Key Lime pie!! I dislike meringue, so when faced with key lime or lemon meringue pie back home, I usually peel off the top layer of offending egg whites and have just the filling and crust.
Bubby’s got it right though, no meringue removal neccessary 🙂

The perfectly tart and tangy lime filling paired with a crunchy graham crust was just the thing to satisfy my summer pie craving for the moment (though looking at the photo has me dreaming of pie again…)

While I doubt I’ll be able to find real key limes here, it’s not stopping me from looking up recipes and wondering if the Persian limes found here would make a satisfactory substitute.

Bubby’s Yokohama@Sakuragicho, Japan

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