Matcha Tofu Cream Cheese [Video]

Matcha Tofu Cream Cheese [Video]

Here's a quickie but most definitely a goodie! 

I'm going to New York again, this time for the SAVEUR Blog Awards, where Vermilion Roots has been nominated as a finalist in the Best New Voice category. I can't thank you enough for your support in voting and cheering me on. The nomination itself has already been such a great honor and I look forward to meeting all the talented bloggers from around the world. 

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September Tidbits: Fall for Spices + Five Spice Energy Bites

September Tidbits: Fall for Spices + Five Spice Energy Bites
"The secret of happiness is variety, but the secret of variety, like the secret of all spices, is knowing when to use it." -Daniel Gilbert, author of Stumbling on Happiness

What delights me more than a pantry full of spices from around the world is remembering I have an emergency stash of spices buried deep inside my purse. I call it BYO spice.

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Kohlrabi Carpaccio + What I Learned from The Vegetable Butcher

Kohlrabi Carpaccio + What I Learned from The Vegetable Butcher

Kohlrabi! 

For months, ever since I first saw it at the farmer's market, this bulbous vegetable haunted me with its elusive identity, tantalizing me with the potential of its portly presence and slinky tentacles. 

What is this? How do you cook it? What does it taste like? TELL MEEE. 

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Soba Noodle Salad with Tamari Dressing

Soba Noodle Salad with Tamari Dressing

I love tamari sauce and use it interchangeably with soy sauce, which I wrote about at length when I shared a recipe for Malaysian soy sauce stir-fried noodles. Both are excellent umami agents. I find Chinese soy sauce to be saltier and more pungent, which is great in stir-fries and marinades, and the mellower taste of tamari sauce lends itself very well in a cold salad like this Japanese-themed noodle salad. 

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August Tidbits: Let's Make Rainbow Cauliflower Rice! [Video]

August Tidbits: Let's Make Rainbow Cauliflower Rice! [Video]

We can make cauliflower rice. Or we can make RAINBOW cauliflower rice! All we have to do is use the different varieties of cauliflower. There's the classic white that we're most familiar with. Then there's orange cauliflower, which has a higher content of beta carotene and Vitamin A, and there's the purple kind, which gets its unique hue from the antioxidant anthocyanin. There's also the striking green romanesco with its stunning pine cone shape. Talk about getting your colorful nutrients! No wonder we are encouraged to eat the rainbow. 

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Malaysian Herb Salad (Ulam) [Video]

Malaysian Herb Salad (Ulam) [Video]

When considering some of the ingredients used in preparing the Malaysian herb salad known as ulam, it's easy to understand why anyone, including myself, would be intimidated. We're talking about herbs like daun kaduk (betel leaves), bunga kantan (torch ginger bud), and daun kesum (Vietnamese coriander), just to name a few exotic ones on the list, and all of which I have never seen since moving to the US. 

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Wheat Threshing by Hand + How To Cook Wheat Berries [Video]

Wheat Threshing by Hand + How To Cook Wheat Berries [Video]

There are plenty of opportunities to find out where your food comes from when you work on a farm. I value every lesson learned volunteering at One Acre Farm in Morgan Hill, CA about growing food, harvesting and preparing it, and, let's not forget, enjoying it. And when a farm throws a party, you know you're in for a treat.

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Coconut Milk Sticky Rice with Peach

Coconut Milk Sticky Rice with Peach

Think Thai desserts and the first thing that pops to mind is sticky rice with mango. Drenched in rich, creamy coconut milk, it has to be one of the simplest indulgent desserts ever. And you don't even have to do anything with the mango. Just pick the best of the season and you have yourself a pretty sweet treat. 

July in California is a great time for stone fruits and I was inspired by the abundance of juicy peak-season peaches and nectarines to make this easy dessert with a Southeast Asian flair. 

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Pineapple Boat Fried Cauliflower "Rice" [Video]

Pineapple Boat Fried Cauliflower "Rice" [Video]

I know how much we love one-bowl meals, but what if the bowl is made of food! You know what they say, the best food is the kind served inside other food. The really great part about this pineapple fried rice is when you reach the end of your meal and discover that you can scrape the juicy pineapple flesh off the bowl and eat it. Certainly gives new meaning to licking the bowl clean, doesn't it? 

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Five Spice Apricot Chutney

Five Spice Apricot Chutney

The last time I took a walk in my neighborhood, I saw a big blue sign on my street with the word APRICOTS written in bright yellow. What did I do? I followed the arrow, of course, and walked into a backyard filled with golden apricots freshly-picked from a farm in the SF Bay Area. It certainly felt like I landed on a page in a Roald Dahl book! 

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Thai Glass Noodle Salad (Yum Woon Sen) [Video]

Thai Glass Noodle Salad (Yum Woon Sen) [Video]

A Thai salad is remembered for its complex blend of flavors and textures. It's that delicate balance of tart, sweet, salty, and spicy that my Southeast Asian tongue craves often. This glass noodle salad delivers in punches, featuring crunches of toasted peanuts against a springy backdrop of mung bean threads soaked in a zesty lime sauce with a big umami kick. Oh yeah!

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July Tidbits: Easy Summer Asian Recipes

July Tidbits: Easy Summer Asian Recipes

The days are getting really hot and sunny here in California. Let's take it light and easy, shall we?Today's link collection is a special one, because I've rounded up some of the simplest Asian recipes using the best summer produce just for you. We're talking cucumber, tomato, zucchini, green beans, and all those wonderful summer fruits. I bet we'll be seeing a lot of them at the farmers market, and maybe they are growing in abundance in your garden now. I hope these recipes will provide you with easy, fun and delicious ideas to enjoy them! 

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Easy as ABC Soup

Easy as ABC Soup

This Summer, I have one simple word for you: EASY. I'm inviting you to join me for a fun and (hopefully) care-free time in the kitchen making easy Asian dishes. What I'll be doing is taking some of my favorite Asian recipes and giving them a new twist by simplifying them.

What that means is I will be replacing some ingredients that are either too difficult to find outside of Asia or too expensive to buy when you do find them. I will introduce one or two basic ingredients that may be new to you. I may even throw in several simple step-by-step videos to show how they are done. How exciting!

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