Mini Lemon Cheesecakes

Mini Lemon Cheesecakes

Bryan and I love cheesecakes. But for the two of us, making a 9-inch full size cheesecake means endless eating. It is not only too much for us. It is also very unhealthy. Therefore, I love this mini version. These mini lemon cheesecakes are perfect little bites. The ratio between the cheese filling and the crust is just right. I also love the hint of tartness and the fragrant from the lemon. It tasted lighter than regular cheesecake.

I originally wanted to make these cheesecakes with Meyer lemons. However I couldn’t find any in store, I used regular lemons this time. I have tried both lemons. Meyer lemon ones were more fragrant and less tart. But they were both fantastic. Use whatever you can find.

These cheesecakes are good for parties. They are pretty looking and easy to eat. And they travel really well.

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Hambāgu Burger

Hambāgu Burger1

No, I didn’t make a spelling mistake. It is “Hambāgu”. Hambāgu is Japanese hamburger steak. It is like a Salisbury steak, but Hambāgu has onion and garlic mixed in with the meat. And the most special part has to be the tangy and sweet red wine sauce. Last year, I tried Nami’s (Just One Cookbook) Hambāgu recipe. Bryan and I absolutely love it, especially that sauce. One day, when we were enjoying burgers for dinner, Bryan said, “Nomm… This is good, but I think it will be even better with the Hambāgu’s sauce.” I can’t agree more. That is how this recipe came together.

For this Hambāgu burger, I used a mild cheese, Provolone, so it won’t be overpowering. The beef patty was juicy and moist. The buns were toasted and slightly sweet, which pair so well with that tangy red wine glaze. Everything came together nicely. It was a great burger! We served the burgers along with the Portobello mushroom fries. It was a satisfying meal. Hope you will try this burger, but don’t forget the napkins. It can get messy!

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Portobello Mushroom Fries

Portobello Mushroom Fries

I first had portobello fries when I was in a restaurant, Bottega Louie in Downtown Los Angeles. They were very good that I kept thinking about them. Thanks to food blogger Amy from uTry.it. She made an oven version portobello fries, which is even better. Easy and healthy. These fries were tasty and I know that I can make them any time I want now.

These fries are perfect substitute for regular fries. They are healthy, earthy, umami and filling. The flakey panko crust was crispy and light. These fries go so well with the creamy, garlicky and slightly sweet mayonnaise. Everything is just right. And they are super easy to make. Clean, cut, and roll. Put in the oven. Done! These fries are great as a side dish with burgers or steaks. Try this and you won’t be disappointed!

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Simple Poached Chicken

A couple of months ago, Bryan was home early from work. We were sitting in front of the TV. Out of nowhere, we realized that we were watching The Queen Latifah Show. That probably freaked Bryan out (LOL!) When we were about to change the channel, Graham Elliot (famous chef and judge from Master Chef) popped out. We were shocked to see the new Graham Elliot. He has lost A LOT OF weight. (If you haven’t seen it, google him.) Amazing! It is very good for him. Then he went on to cook this poached chicken on the show. At first, I wasn’t sure whether we would like that or not. I rarely make chicken breasts, because they are always dry and tough. We never like them. But then, when Chef Elliot finished the dish, the chicken looked moist and tasty. Bryan and I both agreed that we wanted to give this a try.

I am glad we did. This poached chicken was good. The vegetables poaching liquid gave the chicken more flavors. The tasty reduced jus was intense and earthy. It is the secret weapon to keep the chicken breast very flavorful and moist. This dish has changed my mind how chicken breast doesn’t have to be dry all the time. I hope you will enjoy the dish too!

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Hong Kong Trip

After the vacation, I have to admit it is hard to get back to the routine. Bryan and I still haven’t gone back to the gym. We should do that tomorrow. I am also catching up with my recipe testing. It should be almost there. At least, we finally got the Hong Kong trip pictures ready. Woo hoo!

Riding on tram through Admiralty.

Riding on tram through Admiralty.

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Tokyo Trip

Happy Valentine’s Day and Happy Chinese Lantern Festival! Traditionally, Chinese Lantern Festival is to celebrate the first full moon of the lunar new year. Children play with their lanterns and solve riddles on lanterns in park. People would eat glutinous rice balls and enjoy the family time together. In modern days, it is considered to be the Chinese Valentine’s Day, but people don’t do much to celebrate. Anyhow, enjoy a sweet day with your loved one. Bryan and I don’t really celebrate Valentine’s Day, so we didn’t have any plan. We are more looking forward to the long weekend.:)

And yes, I have been back in town for a week. Sadly, Bryan and I are still recovering from our jet lag. We have been feeling sleepy in the morning, afternoon and night-time. Every time when I almost fall asleep on the couch, Bryan would poke my arm with his finger to keep me awake. By now, I think there are many bruises on my arm. Haha! I think we will be back to normal early next week.

Before arriving in Hong Kong, we also stayed in Tokyo for 5 days. The main goal to Hong Kong was to visit family and friends, and check out Chinese New Year. On the other side, going to Japan was all for sightseeing. We had amazing times in both Hong Kong and Tokyo. With two thousand pictures, Bryan can only go through the Japan ones for now. I will update you all about the Hong Kong trip next time.

Let’s talk about Tokyo. This was Bryan’s first time to Japan. I have only been to Japan when I was a kid, so I didn’t remember anything. Japan is a very beautiful place with very nice and polite people. We felt welcomed. Tokyo is crowded, but everyone follows rules and we always feel safe. It is no doubt a great place for tourists. As a foodie, Tokyo is heaven. There are so many different kinds of food, like sushi, tonkatsu, kaiseki, and teppanyaki. There are always something new every meal. No repeat. And for snacks, wow….. They are really everywhere, especially in train/subway stations. You will never go hungry!

Sensoji Temple

Sensoji Temple

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Chrysanthemum Tea

Chrysanthemum Tea

This maybe the easiest recipe that I have ever posted, but it is too good not to be shared with you. I grew up drinking this tea. My mom always made it for my sister and I during hot summer days. When we came home from school, it was really nice to have a cup of cold sweet tea.

Chrysanthemum tea is made with dried Chrysanthemum flowers, water and sugar. It is sweet with an amazing floral scent. Light and refreshing. It is a very common and popular tea within Chinese. It is said that the tea aids in the recovery from cold and flu. It is also a cooling herb which can reduce the body temperature, which is perfect for summer time. I don’t know if Chrysanthemum tea really have any medical benefits, but it sure is a nice tea to enjoy.

One interesting side story: When I first saw the word “Chrysanthemum”, I just didn’t know how to pronounce it. Bryan repeated the word again and again, but I still couldn’t remember it. Out of nowhere, I came to realize the word “Chrysanthemum” sounds a lot like “Chris and his mom”. When you say “Chris and his mom” really fast, it would sound like “Chrysanthemum”. Ever since then, I can pronounce this word perfectly.:)

Last but not least, I will be taking a break and traveling, so I won’t be blogging for 3 weeks. Please check back on the week of February 9th. Meanwhile, follow me (@missinglokness) on Instagram for the latest photo updates. Stay tune!

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