Friday, February 29, 2008

An exciting Friday evening!

Great news! The long-missed Thai Isan food vendors are back on campus! Just before the year 2007 ended last year, all the vendors in the campus cafeteria had to move out. Gone! Coz cafeteria services have been outsourced to a company. So gone were our favorite food sellers. Our acquired taste of the food that is truly authentic campus cafeteria taste could not be satisfied by this new group. That's why we had been having fun with our food marketing and kitchen adventures. But then, this evening when we were moving around the campus, we saw a crowd at the Thai Isan food kiosk by the swan lake. It was announced last week that a new concessionaire has taken over there selling Thai Isan food. It did occur to me that maybe this Isan couple might come to sell food there. But since I was so busy during the past week it slipped my mind to go and check. Anyway, tonight I was planning to cook pasta with tomato sauce and pepper ham. I had already taken them out to prepare when we had to go out. And thus we passed nearby the kiosk. So we decided to see what was going on there, and maybe we were hoping that the new vendors would be our favorite one! And we were not mistaken! We were so excited to see them and we were so happy also to know that it was them! I bet that nearly all their loyal customers on campus feel the same way as we do! So we decided to eat dinner there. Al fresco! By the lake, with a huge monitor lizard coming out once in a while to say hello. Unfortunately I did not bring my camera so I could not show all the favorite food we ordered, namely som tam, namtok mhu, kho mhu yang, sticky rice! And coke. We were being bad but we just shared a bottle. And we were celebrating. Now I am drinking ampalaya tea. So I think it would be ok. Our taste buds were so happy to be tasting some delicious Thai Isan food again. Aroy mak mak! Sep lai lai!

He can cook, thank God!

Last night I left the office at 730 pm coz we had to do some more budget calculation for our annual work plan. So my husband had to cook dinner. Again since it was already towards the end of the week, the food supplies in the kitchen were nearly depleted. When he called me at around 6pm or so to inform me that he had already arrived, and I mentioned that I would be late coming home, he volunteered to cook dinner. Yehey! So nice of him! It seems it is becoming a habit! Anyway, we only had morning glory and mushrooms left in the crisper. No more meat and fish. We did have some pepper ham and eggs. When I got home he had already prepared the veggies and he was about to cook them. It was good he did not forget to cook rice!

I left him to cook it and I just took photos so I can post them here! I gave instructions only ha ha ha! So first was to heat the wok and add some oil, then saute the chopped garlic and the sliced red onions. The smell started to come out from the spices! And my stomach started to growl. I was already hungry and it was only the initial ingredients! Then add the veggies, oyster sauce and some powdered black pepper. Just stir fry for a few minutes and dinner was ready!

Thursday, February 21, 2008

What's cooking, again?

Yes, again because I am back to cooking mode. Even though the other day the exhaust fan in the kitchen broke down. It was working well the night before. But then the cleaners came and they cleaned it. They must have broken something in there. The motor was running when we turned it on but the blade just would not turn with the motor. So I was planning to inform the Housing Office yesterday but I totally forgot about it coz of too much work. My husband said I should have noted it down so I could remember. Oh yeah, well I forgot to write a reminder note ha ha ha. It will have to wait tomorrow because today is a holiday. So last night when I cooked dinner, there was no exhaust fan. The kitchen got really hot. Even the dishes on the rack were also hot to the touch! I opened the windows a bit and directed the fan to it to blow the hot air out. Nevertheless the cooking smell still remained. Especially so since I fried some fish (pla salit ded deaw). This is a gurami fish which has been dried under the sun for just one day. You can imagine the smell. But it was yummy coz I fried it until it was crispy. Sort of intentionally and also because while frying it I could not stay in the kitchen so it stayed longer than necessary but it was not burned. It was too hot in there so I went to the dining room to continue with my crossword puzzle. Then my husband would remind me a few times that there was something burning in the kitchen. I told him that I was frying fish and I wanted a crispy one. Not the 'yeh yeh' kind you get from vendors who did not want to waste time to fry it longer than necessary. Anyway, I also cooked stir fried vegetables to go with the fish! Just 2 kinds of vegies, 'Baguio' beans and morning glory (pakbung, kangkong, tangkong). I added some oyster sauce, then I remembered that I had some basil leaf mixture. Just to have some spicy flavor so I also added some. The end result was very good, indeed. My husband told me it was delicious! That was enough to make my day I was so happy to wash the dishes later, even though actually it should be him coz I already did the cooking! But I did not mind :)