Sunday, January 15, 2012

Team-Up in the Kitchen, and Birthday Fun!

I just had the best time ever cooking dinner! Matt and I worked together to make a fantastic meal! I'm pretty sure Matt has come to expect "Let's cook together!" with me doing most of the cooking, and him doing the boring chores like peeling the potatoes.... And while he did peel potatoes, he also did some seriously bad-ass cooking! Together we whipped up Fried Cube Steak, Mashed Potatoes with Home Style Gravy, and Green Beans in Oyster Sauce!

I'm sure a lot of you just went "OYSTER SAUCE??? EEEWWWWWW!". Don't worry, that's pretty much what I thought too when we first got it. We tried it with some asian stir-fry when it was suggested in a recipe. It tastes pretty funky by itself, but when it's cooked through with things develops a pretty tasty salty-sweet flavor that really makes a dish pop!

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Brunn's Fresh Green Beans with Oyster Sauce

  • Around a pound of fresh green beans, cleaned
  • 3-5 white mushrooms, sliced thin
  • Cooking Oil (I use a mix of vegetable and sesame oil)
  • Oyster Sauce
  • Salt, Pepper and Garlic Powder to taste
  • Splash of Soy Sauce (Optional)
Clean your green beans thoroughly an cut all the little nubby ends off. Blanche the green beans in boiling water 3-5 minutes, drain, and put into an ice bath. You want to get the beans cooked through just a tad so they don't come out crunchy, or burn before cooked through. Give the mushrooms a quick slice while you heat the oil in a skillet on medium-high heat. Saute the mushrooms until browned and sweating, then add in the green beans, salt, pepper, and garlic powder and saute another 5 minutes or so.  Turn down the heat to medium and drizzle the oyster sauce over the top, and add in your soy sauce if wanted. Stir and cook another minute or so, and serve!

Notes: I use a mix of vegetable oil and sesame oil, because sesame oil has a VERY strong smell that likes to linger a long time if you use a lot of it, and it's very expensive comparatively. Using a mix lets you get the flavor without the cost, and much less stink! I always try to brown mushrooms first, as they cook better before adding in salt and other things, and since they tend to drink up the oil before releasing it back out, your other ingredients can burn before this happens. Plus those mushrooms really pick up a nice sesame flavor from the oil this way! If you wish to add soy sauce, be very careful with how much salt you add in while cooking! Soy Sauce usually has a very high sodium amount, and it's very easy to over salt.

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I'm not sure where I came across this recipe, it was from somewhere online. I really enjoy the distinctive and very different flavor it has from the rest of the 'normal' side dishes we tend to have. As a plus, it's also very convenient, as a bottle of oyster sauce will last you quite a while, and you can buy fresh green beans in 12 oz bags at Walmart in their fresh prepped section, even when it's not in season!

Super Convenience!

After all that cooking fun, Matt and I sat on the couch and watched some TV with the Cat, and partook of some leftover birthday cake. Oh yes! On Saturday we spent the afternoon at my Grandparents house having my favorite Beef Stew in celebration of my 24th birthday this next Monday! It was super fun, and I got some new cookbooks from my aunt as well, not to mention a ton of delicious stew! (Recipe for the stew can be found in this post!) It was a ton of fun!

After we left there, Matt and I decided to spend some of my birthday money! We went over to best buy and bought me a new tablet! 0.0; I know, I don't usually spend money on myself like that, but since Matt's little brother works there we got a great deal on it with his discount!


It's fun having a shiny new toy, and the tablet is a SERIOUS upgrade from what I had! It is TWICE as sensitive as my other tablet, meaning I can much more easily vary the width of the lines I'm drawing. I was somewhat scoffing at how this would really affect things, but my jaw literally dropped when I started using it. It's just...insane how amazing it is! I'm so excited! This tablets much better designed anyway- it fits the desk better, the cord comes out of the side instead of the top (Where it gets in the way of everything!), and at some point I can buy an adapter for it that will make it wireless! It's pure pleasure to draw with, I couldn't be happier with my purchase!

And with that thought in mind, I will leave you with this picture of Taco...



~~Brunn~~

2 comments:

Yvon (jioya) said...

That tablet looks very good, i am searching for one and really like what you can do with it.
Thank you for the info.

Hugs Yvon.

Daffycat said...

The green beans look amazing!

Hoping you have a fabulous birthday, kiddo! Have fun playing with your new toy - now you can draw me another awesome header!