A College Girl's Guide to a Happy, Healthy Lifestyle!

Month: August 2015

A New Experience: My Wild Adventures with Finding a New Camera

You know it’s time to buy a new camera when your smartphone takes better pictures than your digital camera. When I decided to start this blog, I had a lot of excitement in my mind of posting pictures every day of my food experiences, crafts, […]

Broccoli in Sweet Asian Garlic Sauce

I have finally done it! I have mastered my recipe of Broccoli in Sweet Asian Garlic Sauce! And I couldn’t be more happy with the outcome. It took a decent amount of time, but I have to say that each failed bowl was worth it. […]

Food Challenge of the Week: Broccoli in Garlic Sauce!

I remember as a child eating chicken and broccoli at least once a week in my apartment in the city. Always, always, always chicken and broccoli.

Well… maybe not so much the chicken. It was the broccoli that was my favourite part, and still is to this day. Now, as I order take out, it is mandatory that one of the items be broccoli in garlic sauce, or broccoli in brown sauce. This week I decided to shy away from the ordering of expensive, not-always-healthy Chinese food, and opted to try making the recipe for myself!

This is how it went: Monday, I made The Garden Grazer‘s “Broccoli with Asian Garlic Sauce” recipe. It was really good. Like, really good. And my parents were explaining over and over how good it smelled (seeing how the scent of sesame oil and garlic went all the way from the kitchen to the outside patio!) I always thought of sesame oil as an ingredient to add for flavour, but this recipe called to sauté the broccoli in the sesame oil (rather than olive or vegetable oil). I have to say, the flavour was pretty dang good. But, it was missing something. It was missing a bit of a sweetness.
Tuesday came round two! I made the next recipe in line by Skinny Chef. Hers was basically the same recipe, only there was also a touch of sugar and some almonds and green onions. Other than that? Almost identical to the first recipe. That’s what I was hoping for, seeing how good The Garden Grazer’s was! Unlike the first recipe, Skinny Chef’s recipe called for sautéing the broccoli in canola or vegetable oil as well as steaming the broccoli afterwards for a few minutes before adding the sauce. When I added the sauce to the pan, it took quite some time for it to thicken, unlike The Garden Grazer’s recipe. I had to raise the heat quite a bit for it to even begin to thicken! For the broccoli, I would say that Skinny Chef’s recipe definitely won. As for the sauce… still neither of them are quite what I want. The sugar added the sweetness the first was missing, though this time, I felt it wasn’t as much of a deep flavour.

Thus far: The Garden Grazer’s sauce has the deepest flavour. Skinny Chef’s glaze has the sweetness, and the broccoli is cooked perfectly. I have one more recipe up my sleeve to try before I concoct my own. That recipe is About Food’s “Vegan Broccoli in Sweet Garlic Sauce” by Jolinda Hackett. Of all the recipes, this was by far the most confusing for me to follow. The instructions didn’t give exact times like the others (so I had to kind of wing it) and some of what I had to do was just difficult in general! Unlike the first two recipes, this one called to add the cornstarch in with everything else already cooking. Well… I cooked it for the 6-8 minutes and it still didn’t thicken like the others, and there were still clumps of corn starch. This definitely wasn’t my favourite of the recipes.

So now, it’s time to create my own recipe. The thickness from the first recipe, the sweetness and broccoli texture from the second recipe, and maybe nothing from the third…

Let’s see what I can come up with tomorrow!

If You Are What You Eat, Then I Am Most Certainly Granola.

The past few days I have been trying to master my granola recipe. I’ve tried scratch granola, banana bread granola, applesauce granola, and even oil-free granola. It’s been quite hectic trying to find a good recipe for my cookbook, but I finally think I’m getting […]

Happy August!

With a new month ahead of me, new ideas have coated my mind the way a nice hot ganache melts over a cake (wow, I’m craving chocolate so badly right now.) Great opportunities have been arising within the past week that I hope to continue all […]

My First Creamery Experience: Working (Theoretically) with the Milkmaid! (Part 3)

If you haven’t read the first part or second part to this three-part post, check them out first! 

Finally, the last section to my first ever experience creating dairy products. Quick recap: Last night I completed making farmer’s cheese, made some of it into what I think to be the yummiest cream cheese I’ve had up to date, and stored my yogurt in the fridge to, well, refrigerate.

This morning, almost 24 hours after starting the yogurt making process, I finally got to eat some of it.

The yogurt was exactly what I was expecting it to be, if not more. Bulgarian yogurt has a bit of a rougher texture than that of American Yogurt, but it’s not as thick as Greek Yogurt either. That’s exactly what I got with this batch! I added some of my home-made granola to it and even made a little parfait!

My home-made Bulgarian Yogurt with some home-made granola!

Now, here’s the thing. It normally takes a few days (if not a week) for my family to get through a quart of yogurt. And this recipe? Well… It made 4 quarts. I freaked out at first. What on earth am I going to do with all of this yogurt I’ve got laying around?! I don’t want it to go bad.. I’ve worked so so hard on making it all in the first place.

Then I remembered my dad’s recent cravings for Indian Cuisine. There was a short period of time back in June where we went out for Indian food once a week. Before that? It was a rare occasion. Once a year, if even. Much of the Indian food I’m aware of calls for yogurt, so that is when my mother and I got the idea to make some home made Indian food! What are we making, you ask?

Saturday: Mughlei-Style Chicken* (Mother’s choice)

Sunday: Beef Rogan Josh (My dad’s number one, favourite food. Ever.)*

That’ll hopefully use up about half a container of yogurt itself. I’ve also decided that I’m going to strain one of the containers of yogurt, just to see how that alters the flavour and texture. Other than that, I’m taking the rest of one of the quarts with me to work tomorrow so my co-workers (as well as other people who work in the market place) can have a lovely completely home made breakfast!

Hopefully I can get through all of this yogurt. I know one of my favourite co-workers Haley told me she could eat a quart all to herself. Deep deep down I hope she was serious about that!


*Alas, I will not be partaking in the eating of either of these meals, for I am vegetarian. But I know I’ll enjoy making the sauces!