Bang-Bang Chicken Egg Rolls

Banging delicious.

After the laziness of Monday night it felt like time for something extra, and I mean extra delicious. I’m obsessed with Asian food and Asian fusion dishes, but the Husband and the Biggin are not fans of some of the flavors. The Puppy doesn’t let food sit in his mouth long enough to taste, so he’ll eat anything I offer to him (including non-food items such as mud, insects, and Nerf bullets). Since we’re split on taste buds, I generally cook slightly different meals when I have a craving for something the rest of the family won’t go for.

The boys had Cajun grilled chicken strips (same seasonings and pan as the egg rolls) and macaroni and cheese for dinner, so it it wasn’t much of a hassle. I scaled down ingredients to make myself a personal serving of egg rolls, but the instructions below are for around 12 egg rolls.

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb chicken tenderloins
  • S&P
  • Cajun Seasoning
  • 1/4 cup mayo
  • 1 tbsp sriracha
  • 1 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 12 egg roll wrappers
  • 2 cups shredded cabbage mix, I chopped mine up more finely
  • 12 slices of pepper jack cheese

Season the tenderloins with S&P and Cajun seasoning. I prefer to remove the tendons because they gross me the hell out. Shove the tenderloins around a hot skillet and let them brown until cooked through. Chop them up.

Mix the mayo, sriracha, rice vinegar, and sugar together in a small mixing bowl. Stir in the cabbage and chopped chicken.

Place an egg roll wrapper on a flat surface in front of you (point down), and center a piece of cheese on it. Spoon on 2 tablespoons of the chicken and cabbage mix. This isn’t YouTube, but I’ll try to upload a video on how to roll egg rolls next week. It’s really super easy, and people are impressed when you get to tell them the egg rolls are homemade.

Either brush some oil onto the egg rolls or use spray oil. Air fry at 350o for 6 minutes. Flip the egg rolls and cook for 6 more minutes.

Bang-bang sauce is good enough to keep in the fridge as a handy condiment. It’s particularly good as a burger sauce with some sweet chili sauce and lime juice added to the mix. We’ll give that a whirl next week with some home fries. I have no idea what I’m going to do with the rest of the egg roll wrappers, but we’ll figure that out next time I decide to drink a few GWC’s, won’t we? GWC’s are an unholy mix of one can of White Claw (your choice of flavor) and a shot of whatever gin you have languishing in your freezer. It’s like a ghetto low carb French 75 and it’s delicious.

– Lin

Bacon, Egg, and Alouette Sandwich

Monday nights are rough, ok?

Look, I’m not going to pretend that I love Mondays or Monday nights. I’m tired, we go back to work/school, and by the time I walk through the door all I want is a glass of wine and a corkscrew lobotomy.

Monday also means I’ve likely not hit the store in a week and will forget to put in a pickup order until the only available time is 8 pm. We all suffer for my lack of organization, but the Biggin suffers the most. You’ve never heard of a child more tortured and abused than this child that has to eat breakfast for dinner. My GOD, can you imagine the horror?

He doesn’t like bacon, and this bread is weird, and only the eggs are edible.

I do make perfect fried eggs.

A Sort of Sandwich, for one:

  • 2 slices of thick cut bacon
  • 1 egg
  • Alouette Garlic and Herbs spreadable cheese
  • Fresh baby spinach
  • A hunk of baguette, sliced in half

Over-Roasted Brussels Sprouts:

  • 1 lb Brussels sprouts, ends nipped and sliced in half
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Ranch seasoning from a packet mix, we’ll say 1 tsp

I like to cut my slices of bacon in half. They fit in the frying pan better and cook more evenly. I also prefer my bacon sort of floppy and half cooked. To each their own.

I obviously cooked enough bacon for 4 people and then used the whole pan of grease for my eggs. Fried eggs aren’t good in butter, don’t use butter, use grease. Salt and pepper your eggs, we aren’t animals.

If you’ve always been too much of a snob to try Alouette spreadable cheese, then I’m here to take you down a peg or three. It’s delicious. LSH and I occasionally eat nothing but some hunks of baguette with the Garlic and Herbs cheese for dinner. It’s perfect when the kids are away for a night and nobody wants to wash a pan.

The Brussels sprouts go into the air fryer for 8 minutes at 400. These sprouts are over-roasted, not oven-roasted. The outer layer gets completely browned and the ranch seasoning gives them a little kick.

You don’t have to make elaborate meals every night of the week, but you also don’t have to eat the same boring thing over and over. There is always enough in my pantry and refrigerator to put something interesting together in 15-20 minutes. The kids might complain, but who told them they were allowed opinions? Not me.

– Lin

Teppanyaki Steak & Fried Rice

Griddled goodness.

We use our Blackstone Griddle twice a week, at least. I talked the Husband into buying us one before the Great Ice Storm of 2021™️ blew in. We luckily didn’t lose power, but I spent a lot of time outside making fried rice just to get away from everyone. I have perfected this stuff, and it’s GOOD.

This griddle is uhhmazing and Im obsessed with it. I think that it’s the best cooking appliance I’ve picked up so far, and I have A LOT of cooking appliances. You can cook breakfast, lunch, or dinner on a single flat surface for a crowd, and then scrape it clean in under a minute. Cleanup is extra easy since they make these little aluminum pans that fit into the drip tray.

True genius.

Ingredients:

  • 2 lbs sirloin steak
  • 6 tbsp butter, divided
  • 4 large eggs
  • Salt
  • Garlic Pepper
  • Yellow onion, chopped
  • 4 cups of jasmine rice, cooked and cooled
  • 4 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tsp sesame oil

Heat your griddle over medium high on your left side and medium to medium low on your right side. Put down 2 tablespoons of butter on the cooler side and start your chopped onion to softening. Season with salt and pepper blend. You’ll want to use griddle spatulas and a scraper so you can pretend you’re at a Japanese teppanyaki restaurant while you poorly flip the onions around. The kids won’t be impressed, but you’ll feel accomplished.

Note: I season every new ingredient dropped on the griddle with salt and garlic pepper for this meal. Lawry’s makes a great garlic pepper blend that’s easy to find, but I’m currently using Penzey’s Florida pepper mix because it’s good on literally everything and I’m addicted.

Get yourself one of those cute condiment squeeze bottles for your avocado oil and lay a few lines across the hot side of the griddle. Drop your sirloins on when the oil heats and season them up.

The onions should be quickly softening and browning by now so add your rice into the pile and spread it out with your spatula. Season with salt and pepper mix, and add 2 tablespoons of butter to melt in. Shake 2 tablespoons of soy sauce and 1 teaspoon of sesame oil across the rice (the sesame oil is super fragrant so go easy). Mix the rice up well and let it sit to crisp up.

Squirt a little oil down for the eggs and crack them onto the griddle. Salt and pepper them and let them cook up sunny-side. Check your steaks and flip them if they are ready for it, and season the other side of your meat. Your eggs should be almost ready at this point (I like my yolks jammy) and you can slide them on top of the rice mix. Use your spatula to start chopping the eggs into the rice and mixing everything up. When the eggs are finished cooking and the rice seems crispy, scrape it all into a large bowl.

Grab a knife and slice the sirloins into small pieces on the griddle. Add the last two tablespoons of soy sauce and butter. Do that fun double spatula thing with the sirloin and flip everything around to mix it up. Add to the top of your rice and dish it all out.

The kids go nuts for fried rice and while I don’t use a lot of extra veggies in mine, they’re at the very least getting some extra protein from the eggs. If I have enough wine next week I’ll have LSH record me “showing off” my griddle fried rice and spatula skills.

-Lin

Instant Pot French Dip Sandwiches

In which my pressure cooker gets the better of me and I time my dishes so poorly that I give up on finishing touches.

Sad, cold fries next to an unbuttered, untoasted roll.

You may remember a brief reminder during my Easy AF Spaghetti and Meatballs post that I’m not perfect. Shocking, I know. I really exude competency and prowess in all things I do. Maybe we can blame the wine this time? Bota Box still hasn’t reached out regarding that sponsorship and Black Box customer service claims they have a C&D in the mail, certified with return receipt.

There are times things just don’t happen in the kitchen. We work, we’re tired, the kids are wild, the dog is eating something off the floor, and there is a new Marvel show that really needs watching. I had a bad kitchen night yesterday. Things just didn’t work out between us, and I’m leaving the stove for the griddle tomorrow.

Even with cold fries and unmelted cheese on my pitifully untoasted hoagie roll, this French dip beef and gravy was good. The soy and Worcestershire marry and work their flavor all the way through the chuck. I pulled that sandwich apart and soaked it in gravy after taking that very sad school cafeteria looking picture. Better luck next time!

Ingredients:

  • 2 lbs chuck roast, cut into 2-3 inch chunks.
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1/2 tsp each of S&P
  • 1 tbsp avocado oil
  • 1 yellow onion, sliced
  • 8 oz mushroom, sliced
  • 3 cloves minced garlic
  • 1 cup beef broth
  • Pinch of dried herbs, such as rosemary or thyme.
  • Butter
  • Sandwich rolls or a hunk of baguette

Put your instant pot on sauté and heat the avocado oil. Use the S&P on your chuck chunks and brown all sides. Add your onion and mushrooms without caring about crowding the pan, because you’re really just done with this whole kitchen experience even though we just started. We should have ordered pizza.

Add the Worcestershire/soy sauces, the garlic, the broth, and your chosen herbs. Cook on high pressure for 45 minutes. By the time your pot comes to pressure, you’ll have already cooked your fries.

Shred the cooked beef with two forks and pile it on your sandwich, but be better than I am about those finishing touches. Butter and toast that bun and melt the cheese under the broiler. Serve your sandwich with a cute little cup of gravy to dip with. Or, lose your mind like me and ladle it over the sandwich and attack with a fork. Your choice.

– Lin

Pork Tenderloin & Brussels Sprout Salad

And now for something lighter.

As I slaved over these beautifully sliced sprouts and pork tenderloin, my husband wandered into the kitchen in search of an apple cider and paused.

“Uh, wtf is this Lin?”

A meat and potato lover’s nightmare.

When I informed my husband that we needed something lighter because we have eaten heavy cooking all week he informed me that, “Maybe that’s acceptable in some houses, but I’m not eating Brussels sprouts.”

Well, the joke is on him because he ate every bite on his plate and went back for more. You can trick your man into eating sprouts salad with enough dried cherries and pine nuts mixed in. Now, let’s grab a glass of our wine du jour (Bonanza cab) and get slicing.

Ingredients for the salad:

  • 1 lb. fresh Brussels sprouts
  • 1/4 cup olive oil, extra virgin is best for dressing
  • 2 lemons
  • 2 handfuls of pine nuts, toast them if you want to be fancy
  • 1 handful of dried cherries,
  • 1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese, don’t get the pre-shredded trash, get a block and do it yourself
  • S&P

Ingredients for Pork Tenderloin:

  • 2 Pork tenderloins (around 1 pound each), with the silver skin removed
  • S&P
  • 1 tsp Italian Seasoning
  • Onion powder
  • Garlic powder
  • Olive oil

Let’s get our hands dirty.

Preheat your oven to 500 with your sheet pan inside. Once you’ve cleaned up your tenderloins and tossed that nasty silver skin out, rub them down with some olive oil (a tbsp should set you straight). Season with S&P, a couple of shakes of garlic and onion powders, and your Italian seasoning.

Pour another glass of wine while the oven finishes preheating. Pull your pan and flop your tenderloins onto it leaving at least a couple of inches between them.

Set your timer for 10 minutes.

Stop, salad time. Wash your Brussels sprouts and pat them dry. Trim the ends and then cut them in half lengthwise. If you have a mandoline you can shave them, but I can’t stand cleaning my mandoline so I just slice the sprouts finely until I get annoyed and then slice them haphazardly.

Grab a mixing bowl and squeeze your lemons into it. Whisk in your olive oil and don’t panic if it doesn’t look like a perfect vinaigrette, it doesn’t actually matter. Mix your remaining ingredients in and S&P to taste. Let the salad rest at room temperature while your tenderloins finish up.

I really like to flip the tenderloins at around 10 minutes. Keep them cooking until an instant read thermometer hits 145 degrees (around 8 more minutes). That’s right, tell your grandma to take her trichinosis talk and shove it in her apron pocket.

When your tenderloins are a perfect 145 degrees, pull them and let them rest for a few minutes before slicing thinly.

If your tenderloin doesn’t look like this, you’ve probably ruined it.

Give your salad a last toss and pretend you’re capable of plating (the three glasses of wine help tbh). Mound up some salad and artfully lay some sliced pork on top. Smugly watch your spouse and kids stuff their faces.

Cheers, Lin