snack Tag

Book Bait: The Hulk, Dry-fried Green Hot Wings


WHAT:  In a shameless campaign to drum up anticipation for our upcoming cookbook, The Art of Escapism Cooking – A Survival Story, today I am launching a new recipe series with a very self-serving, absolutely no-good intent.  Lady and gentlemen, may I present to you, The Book BaitWhat are book baits you ask.  Well, they are brand new recipes that are not in the cookbook but however, in order to make them, you will need an essential component from the book to complete which, yes, is not yet published until October 15, 2019.  And yes, I am willing to do that to you to sell books.

WHY:  Aside from the main motive to get you to pre-order the book (and you can do it here, here and here!), the inspiration for creating this recipe series – if there is still room for this argument – is not entirely corrupt.  There is a chapter inside the book called Condiments, consisting of sauces and spice-mixtures that are used more than once throughout the book.  But since the wrapping-up of the book, I continued to unearth new and exciting ways to utilize them that are too good to be left unbothered.  Which brings us to today’s subject, Fried Chili Verde Sauce.

HOW:  If I could put this green chili sauce in every recipe in the book, I would.  It’s a smooth, creamy almost, and fiercely fragrant puree made from green cayenne peppers that are cooked down, intensified, consummated.  It packs such a pronounced profile of that savory, mouthwatering pepperiness that so many other chili sauces strive for but fall miserably short on, with just enough heat to break a mist of sweat on your forehead without burning your hair off.  It sparkles as a supporting role in a small dollop but ultimately, can and should carry a dish as the main storyteller in a recipe such as this.

I call it, The Hulk, semi-butterflied dry-fried wings lathered in a fiery green hot puree with fried chili verde sauce as the base, and several varieties of green herbs to bring a grassy, fragrant, complex flavor profile to the overall, painfully pleasurable experience.  The butter that is traditionally mixed into other hot wing recipes, is replaced by my extra-brown browned butter that is poured on ruthlessly at the end, humming its respective tune in this crispy, spicy, creamy and finger-licking chorus.

You probably want this immediately.  I mean I certainly want it again since yesterday.  But if someone is making you wait five weeks… well, that’s just mean.

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Cookbook Preview – Shrimp wontons w/ spicy coconut shrimp oil


FYI, There is an entire chapter in our cookbook with delicious little morsels recipes just like this.  Preorder your copy now!

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Here is another recipe preview from our cookbook – The Art of Escapism Cooking that is coming out on Oct 15th!

This recipe has many components – slippery, bouncy, rich, tangy, spicy, creamy – working collectively and in balance to support what is ultimately a perfect shrimp wonton.  The idea was born out of my desire to eat a bowl of shrimp wontons where the shrimp-ness is celebrated in more ways than one, and to reminisce the time when I was little when I would always try to gather the dark orange oil from my mother’s pan-fried shrimps and spoon it over my rice while sucking on the shrimp heads till my brain hurt.   No other person in the family did that.  And this is my way of doubling-down on their loss.

As previous recipe preview, I will include the entire intro and instructions exactly as it will appear in the book.  Reading back, this one in particular was undoubtedly written on a day of great angst and bitterness (insert lol emoji).  Thing is, the way I approached writing a recipe is very different from how it’s done on the blog, mood-swung and uncensored, not all but sometimes landing itself as short outbursts of emotional rhapsodies.  Varied from the first cookbook recipe preview, you’ll get a good sampling of the book’s state of mind.



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Right, let's face it. Who are we kidding? The only thing sporty about me is that I could, maybe, jump over a puddle if my life depends on it. My Dad was really into sports when I was growing up, he still is. He's constantly looking at US sportsbooks and judging what to bet on next, it's quite interesting to watch really! But that doesn't mean you wouldn't want someone like me at the party this Sunday - while the gang rouse up above a borderline-patriotic roar towards the flatscreen, beers blazing and testosterone bursting - who sinks into the couch giggling at her phone whilst watching French bulldog puppies on youtube. Why, because my friends, I'm the one who's gonna bring the kool-Aid. It doesn't even matter if you don't like sports, nearly everyone watches the Super Bowl. Many people get into their comfies, or even their sportswear to really get in the mood, and settle down to watch one of the biggest events of the year. My friend buys a new trackuit every year the Superbowl is on - you can click here for an array of mens tracksuits if you fancy doing the same! It's such a huge sporting event, and many people often host their own viewing parties, which is what I'm attending. I don't have a favorite team or anything, but it's still fun to go to these Super Bowl parties. Some of my friends take this sporting event extremely seriously though. They usually use sports betting Indiana apps to place their bets on which team they think is most likely to win. By doing this, they could win some money. So many people place bets on these big events, so it's important to bet whilst the odds are still good. Whilst some of us will be betting, others will just be watching the game and having fun at the party. That's what I'll be doing, and I'll be bringing some food.

So let's hit it. For God and country, in the name of sports, and beefcakes clashing and tight muscles fluttering in slow motion... let's eat ourselves to a cellulite-d immobile pulp and call it the spirit. Man... gotta love this day.

Here's the game-plan.

First, what's a football party without some sliders? These 2:1 sliders with charred green chili mayo, with patties that are 2 parts meat and 1 part cheese, browning and melting all over the place, is the one that you're looking for.

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If you thought, we shared a passionate connection yesterday over orange ramen for our new segment – The Shits I Eat When I’m By Myself – well, here comes true love.

True love is… true love is…  I say true love is when your other half walked in on you, with this throbbing in your mouth, said nothing, walked away and pretended like nothing happened, and didn’t cancel your credit card…  Uh, what was in your mouth oh I mean, my mouth you asked?  Uhem… even the mere pronunciation of the words, has to come with great courage…  It’s sharp gouda grilled cheese.  ……………..  OK.  OK… that’s not entirely honest.  Wwwell, it’s sharp gouda grilled cheese with baby arugula, and something tangy, spicy hot and fabulously crunchy in between…  What?  Now you’re just prying…

Fine!  FINE!  It’s flaming hot crunchy cheetos!  It’s FLAMING HOT CRUNCHY CHEETOS!  And I fucking love this shit!  Ya happy now?  It’s gooey melted gouda grilled cheese, but with a crunchy and contrasting texture sandwiched right in between, releasing neon-red powers that are, possibly, the last surviving legal addiction.  And didn’t you hear that there’s A-RU-GU-LA?  Which is, a ve-ge-ta-ble.  Which is, not just there to validate that I’m still a human being, but to elevate the entire flavour profile to please anyone, who obviously, isn’t insane.

What’s not to like?  Don’t answer that…

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This story of the distortion or/rebirth of a Prince, is either going to sound savagely wrong or/wistfully nostalgic, depending on whether or not you came from an island called Taiwan in all its quiet and subordinate existence just southeast of China.  You’re looking at something called the wang-zi (prince) mian (noodle).  The extent of its popularity outside of Taiwan is a less certain matter but yeah, we all certainly know him, the punk-looking prince with a hideous baseball cap on a bright yellow and red-striped plastic bag, with a brick of fried noodles and seasonings inside.  Cup Noodles in bag-form.

Except for the obvious disconnection between his look and the word “Prince”, there was nothing out of the ordinary.  His journey only grew remarkable at a historic moment when he, among other bugs and such, became the victim of children’s relentless savagery which left him deformed.

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OK… OK so I lied.  I didn’t go outside last week…  As a matter of fact, I didn’t go outside for the entire three consecutive blue-sky-days…  I’ve been home.  I’ve been home all this time, alone by myself with Jason on a business trip… helplessly, drowning in a bloodbath of some of the ultimate, eternal cinematic achievements known to women.  One.  Classic.  Hit.  After.  Another….  Twelve Years Of Slaves?…  Neeuuu….

Ladies, bust out your most shameless, worthless, dirtiest secret stash… it’s home-alone chick-flicks extravaganza night.

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Can I rudely leave you alone with this crunchy… buttery… porky, gingery shrimpy thingy today even though you were just introduced?  Not that you’ll need any persuasions to take them home to your bed, but you know, I still feel like explaining myself why I’m in such a hast today.  Well, first, It’s been the third consecutive “blue sky day” here in Beijing which is as rare as a Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade through The Black Gate of Mordor, so yes first, I think I should step outside my nest.  Secondly, yesterday as I was routinely sipping my afternoon joe while courting my laptop, through the misty reflection of the screen I saw there he was… Rebeus Hagrid, in his bad hair-day.  So yes secondly, I think I should step outside my nest.  Thirdly, there’s a fabulous red skirt from Zara with my hip’s name on it.


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The danger is real. There’s a paradise out there.

You can’t move two steps without hearing old-time tales of unsuspecting wanderers who passed by and never left, got sucked in by that boundless flickering of Pacific blues so wicked that they dared plunging into the terrifying anxiety of a slowed down life. Made home, even a family, grew roots. Their next generation, born-and-raised, has fascinating stories to tell about their unwavering connections to being the children of these captivating islands, seeding ideas inside visitors with a less affirmative mind such as myself who all, at one point or another, fondled the unthinkable… could I live here? Oh you’ll see. Just a split second of carelessness and you too would find yourself romancing the same idea.

Hawaii is that kind of hazard and I barely made it out in one piece.

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