Thursday, June 28, 2012

Silken Tofu with Crispy Dried Scallops

Being a busy mom, I am always on the look-out for meals that are quick-cooking and yet healthy and flavorful.  Early evenings are the most hectic time of the day in my household, so weekday meals are usually less elaborate.  But less elaborate doesn't mean giving up on nutrition, flavor and presentation.

This silken tofu dish meets all those requirements, with the least amount of effort. Tofu is one of the favorite foods of health buffs because of its low calorie count, relatively large amounts of protein, and has zero saturated fat.
Silken Tofu with Crispy Dried Scallops 
2 blocks silken tofu (I used the round tubes available in the nearby grocery)
4 tbsp dried scallops, broken down into small pieces and fried (can be prepared in advanced)
4 cloves garlic, minced
3 tbsp light soy sauce (or make your own by mixing equal parts soy sauce/water) 

few stalk of scallions, chopped 

To make Crispy Dried Scallops:
 1.  Rinse dried scallops and rub off any white film on the surface.  Wash and place in bowl, covered with hot water overnight.
2.  Drain scallops, reserving the stock.  Shred scallops by hand, discarding the hard muscles.
3.  Lay flat on a baking tray, and bake on a preheated 175 degrees celsius oven till crispy.  Set aside for later use.

1.  Heat tofu in hot water, with packaging intact.
2.  Heat a wok, put some oil, fry dried scallops until golden and crunchy. drain away as much oil as possible with a kitchen towel.  Set aside.
3.  With oil in wok, fry minced garlic until golden.
Drain garlic on kitchen toweland set aside.
4.   Cut open tofu packaging and slice tofu into 1/2"-3/4" thick.  Put on a serving dish.  Pour light soy sauce on the base of the tofu.
5.  Top tofu with crispy scallops, scallions and garlic bits.   
6.  Serve to your family and enjoy at once. 

There!  The garnish makes it look like you slaved away in the kitchen, when all it really took to prepare this dish is 30 minutes from prep to serving. :)

* If you have left-over scallions from this dish, you can read how I extend the shelf life of scallions for upto two weeks right here.

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Friday, June 22, 2012

Phenomenal Tip: How to Store Scallions/Leeks

The kids have all gone back to school, and my mornings have slowly begun to ease back into my comfortable ritual.  I now have time to position myself in front of the computer uninterrupted – for a long stretch of time.  I used to think, when my oldest was still a pre-schooler and my youngest an infant, that I would eventually be rewarded with lots of leisure time as they get older, and thus be less needy.  Such a silly thought!:)  I am soon to be a mother to a high-schooler, and yet my days are still filled with activities that are all about being a mother.  

Anyway, after being deficient in writing posts the entire summer, let me get going by sharing with you a wonderful kitchen tip that has been of much help in my kitchen...How to store leeks and scallions to enjoy them upto two weeks.

I love scallions and leeks, and I frequently use them to garnish our plates come dinner time.  However, most homemakers rarely use them because of their tarnished reputation for the reason that they wilt quickly.

Let me show you what I do...

1.  First clean the leeks/scallions in running water, making sure to take out the grime and dirt.  Throw out wilted parts also.

2.  Then placed the scallions alongside the container where you plan to store them, and cut them out a few inches shorter.

 3.  Leave them slightly damp, cover tightly.  They will keep for upto two weeks - guaranteed!

 4.  Enjoy them!
Silken Tofu with Dried Scallops and Scallions. Recipe to follow soon!
Dried Scallops and Egg White Fried Rice. Recipe to follow soon!

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Wednesday, June 6, 2012

HeadWare Love

During the start of summer, I was given some HeadWare products to sample, and my kids were more than willing to use them as they engaged in various activities. J finds good use for it during swim meets, to keep hair off her face as she waits for her turn in between heats...

...and later on as a bandana when the mid-day sun proved too hot to bear.

Still, we found another good use for it - to hold an ice-pack when she sprained her ankle...

They gave me 3 designs, perfect for each of my three kids.  J loved that hers came in her favorite color purple, while B found the doodle print super cute, and R just loved wearing his Spidey mask.:)

Established in 2010, Headware develops functional and useful products that allow people to enjoy to the fullest the active life they seek. Their first creation, the Basic Headware, is a multipurpose seamless tube that has more than twenty uses for a deceptively simple-looking product. The Basic Headware has amassed a vast following from the sports, adventure and travel communities.

Headware® adds another accessory to their arsenal of essential products, the Loop Scarf. The latest innovation in fashion and travel accessories utilizes the signature multipurpose lifestyle that Headware® has established.

The Loop Scarf, like Headware®’s previous creations, is stretchable, breathable, all-purpose, tubular and still seamless.  This piece allows you to enjoy travelling in warm and cold climates as the lightweight material helps protect you from intense rays of the sun as well as keep you warm in colder temperatures. With its usefulness, the Loop Scarf is a travel-must-have whether for short trips or long term travel traversing continents.

The versatile scarf scores points in the fashion department as well. Scarves have the ability to transform an outfit from ordinary to exceptional. Add a pop of color to ensemble by choosing a bright hue. For cool night outs, the Loop Scarf works as a bolero perfect for any outfit.  For the more adventures types, the Loop Scarf can even be used as a top together with other accessories.

The Loop Scarf (P690) can be worn as a bolero, double loop scarf, shoulder shawl, single loop scarf, head scarf and in as many uses as the imagination can think of. It comes in Black, Grey, Beige, Brown, Teal, Purple, Plum, Red and will be available starting June at ROX, Moana, The Travel Club, Lonely Planet and Planet Sports.

Like their Facebook page to know more about HeadWare products.

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