A Nibble of Agu

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On transition days like this, when the weather is starting to ease out of fall into winter that’s when I start to reminisce about warmer times. Like the night out in Oahu when hunger unexpectedly hit and caused a quick stop at Agu, a ramen bistro.

The resturant has an intimate feel. With bar placed in the center of the space and tables to the sides. The menu is simple and straight forward, presenting everything at a glance. The waitstaff helpful, answering the dumbest questions with patience.

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That evening we kept it light and ordered the Yuzu Jidori Ramen. Which had a chicken broth base and came with menma (fermented bamboo shoots), aji tamago (soft boiled egg), nori (seaweed) with negi (leeks). We opted out of the pork char siu topping. We shared an order of Chicken Nanban which came with tarter sauce and shredded cabbage, along with a plate of kimchi.

 

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Overall for a late night pick me up it definitely hit the spot.

Riverside Hot Pot

For those of you in the DMV, I’m sure you understand when I say this area has been going through some things. We are in May, but the weather has been unusually nippy and the sun has been on hiatus for, what feels like, months. Because being outside wasn’t a top choice a friend and decided to try Chinese hot pot at Riverside Hot Pot.

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Located in Gaithersburg, the restaurant has a casual intimate feel that immeadiately makes you feel welcome. Once seated the waiter presents you with a checklist for your selection of the broth base (for the soup), meats, veggies, and add-ins. While the soup add-ins are shared, each diner has an individual hot pot. Allowing for personalized soups with endless choices from the menu of more than 24 items. That and the fact that the restaurant is all you can eat (Yayyyy!!!!) made it amazing!

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Once we made our selections it was a matter of waiting. But it was definitely worth it! Initially the two of us were overwhelmed the amount of food, because we ordered pretty much everything on the menu. But once we started eating it was a wrap.

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So if you’re looking for a great place to eat and a new experience to try. Stop over at Riverside Hot Pot.
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What Better to Eat Apart from Chili When Outside is Just That!

I’ve been trying to find comfort foods that will make the cold a bit more tolerable. Normally, I go for soups because it warms the body from the inside out but I was craving something hearty. Then it hit me! Why not Chili? The meat, beans, spice, and color would definitely hit the spot. But seeing that I am going for a healthier lifestyle I decided to make turkey chili, instead of the normal beef.

What is needed:

2 Cups of Dried Beans
1 medium size bowl
1 medium saucepan
Food processor/blender
2 Bell Pepper
2 medium tomato
1 yellow onion
1 jalapeno
1 wedge of ginger
1 pound of ground turkey
2 cups water
1 tbspoon Olive oil
2 tspoons of garlic powder
Salt
Parsley
Rosemary
Oregano

Night Prior:

In a medium size TC 1bowl place two cups of dried beans. Pour water into the bowl until the beans are completely covered. Allow the beans to soak overnight. The next day you’ll notice that the beans absorbed the majority of the liquid.

 

Day Of:

Take the yellow onion and cut into quarters.TC 4
Dice a quarter of the onion.
Take the sauce pan and pour the oil in it. Move the pan to coat the bottom in oil. Add the diced onions.
Place the sauce pan on the stove and turn the range to a medium setting. Allow the onions to cook to translucency.

TC 5While this is occurring take your tomatoes, jalapeño, onion, and ginger cut into smaller pieces and place in food processor. Add a pinch of salt. Now blend until everything has a smooth consistency. Leave in the processor for now.

 

TC 7Taking the ground turkey add it to the sautéed onions in the saucepan. Use a spatula to split the turkey into small pieces. TC 8
Do this unless you want to have “meatballs” in your chili. After you’ve done this add ground garlic to the meat and mix it with the onions. Allow the meat to brown.
TC 14Returning to the food processor take your tomato mixture and pour it into your browned turkey. Add the oregano, parsley, and rosemary. Mix everything together. Cover the sauce pan with the lid and allow for it to come to a boil. This should take about 10-15 minutes.TC 15

Once it boils remove the lid lower the heat and allow for the turkey to cook some more. It should look like the picture on the  right. The sauce around the turkey should a deeper red. And the oils from the meat floating at the top. Taste and season accordingly.

TC 17Add the beans to the pan and add the two cups of water. Add more water if your mixture isn’t covered by it. Cover the pan and allow for it to cook at medium heat for 50 minutes, stirring occasionally.  To check to see if the beans are cooked thoroughly take one an break it in half. If it happens easily it’s cooked. If it’s a bit hard give it more time. Once all the beans are fully cooked your meal ready.

You’ll have to excuse me this time as I don’t have a picture of the completed meal. I threw this together after work for dinner and the next days lunch and simply forgot to take pictures since I was ravenous ;). I promise to do better next time!