Korean in Washington State

We have just safely returned from our visit to see the Grandson (and his mom and dad as well, of course). As we reflect on how Zeke has grown and developed over the past year, we also remember our food adventures in the State of Washington. While we were there only a week, and did not scratch the surface, we did get to sample tastes of the local Korean community. Now to be more specific, we stayed in the community of Lakewood, Washington, adjacent to Tacoma.  Lakewood has a large Korean Community. Of course, this includes groceries and restaurants.

This was our third trip to this part of Washington, and we had time to check out the community in a little more detail.  We had plenty of Korean restaurants to choose from, some specializing in Korean BBQ, others more traditional.  For this trip, we choose to take everybody out to Ho Soon Yi Restaurant, in Lakewood.

You will find at Ho Soon Yi, a traditional Korean Restaurant, with many delicious options.  Portions are generous, with numerous side dishes (Banchan) for the table to choose from.  I, had, the Bibimbap, in the hot stone bowl. Everybody enjoyed their dishes, even little Zeke seemed to like the Anchovies and peanuts.  Our server was friendly and attentive.

We all gave Ho Soon Yi two thumbs up, and will be getting a return engagement on our next trip to Lakewood.

I should add we didn’t just eat Korean on our trip, but that is for another blog post!Ho Soon Yi.jpg

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You say, “Tomato”

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You say Tomato………

Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is knowing not to put it in a fruit salad.

Brian O’Driscoll
The humble tomato has come a long way since its journey from the new world in the 1500’s. The name ‘tomato’, comes from the Aztec word “Tomatl”. The Spanish may have been the first Europeans to bring to Spain in 1521, although some authors suggest Columbus may have brought tomato seeds back as early as 1491.

References to the tomato appear in books as early as the mid 1500s. Writings at that time referenced a new type of “eggplant”, that could be cooked and seasoned with salt and pepper. Despite this, it appears early tomatoes were first grown for decoration, not eating.

But in time, tomatoes spread throughout southern Europe, and cookbooks featuring tomato recipes began appearing in the mid 1600’s, and new and varied forms tomatoes were developed. Unfortunately, general acceptance of the Tomato as food was hampered by persistent rumors of toxicity.   This situation was not helped by the publication of a booked called Herball, written by a John Gerard, in 1597 in England. In it, he call the Tomato plant “of ranke and stinking savor”   not a strong endorsement. While he didn’t specifically call the Tomato poison, his less that enthusiastic description, discouraged the adoption of the Tomato as a foot in England, and later North America.

The first mention of Tomatoes in North American was around 1710, with the publication of a book by herbalist William Salmon. At that time, the Tomato was mainly found in the south, but spread to other areas. It continued to be grown as an ornamental, but it continued to be dogged by rumors that it was poisonous.

The Tomato’s’ reputation was helped somewhat by Thomas Jefferson, who ate tomato dishes during his time in France. He send seeds back to Monticello, where he grew them.

By the early nineteenth century, tomato recipes were appearing in American books, newspapers, and magazines. Slowly, Tomatoes began to be grown in all parts of the United States, and more varieties of Tomatoes were being developed.

By 1897, Joseph Campbell began to market condensed canned Tomato soup. The humble tomato finally gained in rightful culinary place in the world food pantry.

Today, tomatoes are grown around the world and is important part of the cuisine of almost all parts of the planet, with many varies of tomatoes.

In our next article, we will discuss growing and cooking tomatoes, including the leaves of the Tomato plant. Are they toxic, or a great component of your next batch of sauce?

Mount Rainier and other Stuff.

Mount RainierWe recently journeyed to Washington State to visit Zeke and his Mother.  We had the opportunity to visit Mount Rainer National Park.  It was a beautiful day, with no clouds, and I was able to get some nice shots with the Canon Powershot.

Mount Rainer is a Volcano, 14,411 feet in height.  I read it was a potentially dangerous Volcano, and the presence of all the Glacial ice would make it eruption much more destructive.

Fortunately for this day, it was just a pretty mountain. But it does give me pause, as my son, his wife, and their new son can see Mount Rainier from their upstairs bedroom.  Life is full of potential risks, from accident, disease, or natural disaster. We could live in fear, or we can manage and deal with risk in a constructive way.

Food for thought from the Hungry Doctor.

Tammy’s Pepperoni Dip

Need something quick for the Holiday get together?
This Pepperoni dip is quick and easy to make, and there will be no left overs to take home!
You will Need:;
One package Hormel Pepperoni
One Package of Cream Cheese
One cup Mozzarella Cheese, shredded.
A couple of Tablespoons half and half.

Take the Pepperoni and put in the food processor, you can vary the amount to taste. Buzz it until finely minced. Add the Cream Cheese, it works better if it is a little softened.
After it is mixed, add the cheese and blend.
It will be a tight consistency, but that’s ok. Place in a container, you can take it immediately or store in the fridge.

When your ready, use a small crock pot to place your dip. As it heats, it will melt and soften. Then add the half and half to smooth it out.

We like Ritz Crackers, but use your favorite, and enjoy!

Your Welcome!!!

Thanksgiving, 2014 Part I.

Thanksgiving is a Holiday of food tradition. No Holiday is more closely tied to specific foods than Thanksgiving. This includes Turkey, of course, but also Pumpkin pie, cranberries, and arguably, green bean casserole. Ham can be a secondary player to Turkey, and many a Thanksgiving dinner features both.

For our Thanksgiving dinner this year we considered Turkey and Ham, but we really couldn’t decide. There was only going to be three of us this year for Thanksgiving, so a large Turkey was not going to be practical. Ham or even a Turkey breast was considered, but we weren’t sure. As Thanksgiving drew nearer, we made what some may consider a radical decision. This year, the pies and the side dishes play a more prominent role this year, and in place of Turkey and Ham, we would roast a Chicken this year. We felt a roast chicken would be tasty, and play well with side dishes and appetizers.

This year, we would like to share with our Thanksgiving adventure, as well as including some of our recipes for you to try (you don’t have to wait until next Thanksgiving!).

 

Let’s start with an Appetizer and a drink!

 


Our drink is pretty simple: a shot of citrus Vodka, pomegranate juice, and your favorite soda. You can leave out the Vodka for the kiddies. We included this year one of our favorite appetizers, Hot Artichoke dip.

 

2 14oz cans Artichoke hearts

4 oz. cream cheese

½ cup sour cream

1 tsp Worcestershire Sauce

½ cup grated Parmesan Cheese.

Pinch of Garlic powder.

Drain artichoke hearts in a strainer and rinse. Chop the Artichoke hearts into small pieces. Soften cream cheese and blend in with the sour cream. Add garlic powder, salt and pepper, cheese, and Worcestershire sauce. Mix completely, and fold in the Artichoke hearts. Place mixture in a shallow baking dish.

Top evenly with Parmesan cheese. Bake in a pre-heated 400 degree oven until hot throughout.

Serve with crackers for crostini.

 

Stay tuned for Part II, where we’ll cover the side dishes and the Chicken!

Yard to Plate

We do eat out a lot here at the Hungry Doctor. We also watch a lot of the Food Network, and the Cooking Channel. The big buzz term we hear now is the “Farm to table movement” We think this is a good thing.

Bringing fresh local ingredients to local restaurants for their customers. Everyone benefits, from the farmer, to the diner.

With the popularity of Farm Markets, Home cooks can also take advantage of locally produced fruits and vegetables, and even meats.

We can even expand on this concept even further with what we will call “Yard to Plate”. Growing your own produce to bring directly into your Kitchen.

It is estimated 250 square yards of acreage could provide enough food to feed a family of four. Now, most of us won’t have to grow that much, unless you do want to become self-sufficient.

Here at the Family homestead, we have assorted pots of vegetables, including peppers, tomatoes, and Squash.

With a little work, we will have a steady supply of produce as fresh as it gets.

This year, our berry plants are finally producing fruit, making the bird netting essential.

It is a unique eating experience, to enjoy food that was grown right outside the patio door. We’ll include more pictures as the summer progresses!

 

Finally we wish everyone a happy 4th of July, and remember all of those who served to keep us free!!

 

 

Asheville Dining. Ups and Downs

We have blogged numerous times about our dining experiences in Asheville, North Carolina.

Most of our meals in Asheville have been outstanding. But, alas, we were disappointed during out last trip this past spring.

It was a short one day stay, as we were going to Charleston, South Carolina the next day.

During a walk in the Biltmore village, near our hotel, we were hungry, and we saw The Cantina.

The Cantina is a reincarnation of an earlier Mexican restaurant in the same space. When we walked in, it was open and airy.

Our server seemed friendly enough, and we placed our orders.

I ordered their Sangria, but I instantly got a headache after the first couple of sips. Now, I don’t get headaches, and this was a bad sign.

Unfortunately the food that followed was bland and under seasoned. We expect seasoning in Mexican dishes, but lacking in our meal.

My increasing headache further dampened my enthusiasm for my meal.

Tammy’s food was equally unimpressive.

We Skipped dessert….

We hope to head back to Asheville in the Future, and we expect to have great meals there, without headaches.

If you ate at the Cantina in Asheville, let us know. Were we right? Or are we off base?