One month late to post photos from a rooftop party to celebrate my 28th birthday! 🔥
After traveling for 5 weeks to Hong Kong, Thailand, and Tokyo and then coming home with an unconfirmed stomach ulcer, my summer flew by and I didn’t get to hang out with friends much. With my birthday on a Sunday (and not on the first day of school) this year, I am so thankful to have had some of my closest friends (including Nadia & Joby home from Milwaukee!) join me for my last summer hurrah before school started. Thanks to Albee, we were able to reserve the awesome rooftop at his complex for a BBQ dinner and a chill hangout. We busted out gold and silver star balloons, enjoyed steak that Peter grilled and yummy food my mom prepared, ate around a large dining table like family, watched the sunset, lounged by the fire, ate cheesecake with macarons, had a cupcake tasting of SusieCakes from Anita & Scott, and soaked in a nice summer evening with each other’s company. It was just what I wanted for my birthday!
Easter at the end of my Spring Break was already 3 weeks ago. Since I just posted about the pizza pasta I made a week ago, I’ll catch up on blogging about my Easter dinner too! March and April were so busy and stressful at work that I stopped cooking once I started working late and lost my voice for 3 weeks. For the past few years living at home, I have either not cooked or I go big and cook a fancy meal for others, such is the case with Easter dinner two years in a row. Last year I made my first Easter dinner for 11 people, my visiting relatives from HK, Australia, and NY! This year it was my mom and family friends, a small group of 4 of us! I was so sad that my steak was way overcooked because I didn’t have enough time to use the sous vide and get the perfect medium rare steak, but thankfully my guests eat steak cooked thoroughly. On the bright side, I successfully made roasted beets and brussels sprouts for my first time and they were yummy!
Ingredients: ribeye steak, mushrooms, beets, carrots, brussels sprouts, onions, dried thyme
Roasted brussels sprouts and onions and roasted beets and carrots with thyme
Appetizer: Cream of mushroom soup with mushrooms
White grape with elderflower sparking juice and fancy table setting
Entree: Ribeye steak with roasted brussels sprouts, onions, beets, and carrots
Dessert: Mom’s jello eggs and Trader Joe’s mini chocolate ice cream cones
My sister-in-law cooked pizza pasta when we visited San Diego over Spring Break. It was so good that I asked her for the recipe. I invited friends over for dinner last week and decided to make this for my first time, so the pressure was on to feed 6 people. Moving from mom to friends as my guinea pigs! I’m glad it turned out okay, and everyone thought it was really good. I don’t like to follow recipes step-by-step if I already have an idea of the end result, but I look up the ingredients so I know what to include in it. One thing I learned to do differently next time is to put the oven on broil to brown the cheese for 5 minutes instead of on bake which didn’t even brown the cheese after 30+ minutes. I forgot that I used broil to brown the top of my shepherd’s pie, but I wasn’t really thinking when I had 45 minutes to get dinner ready. This is an easy meal to serve a group, especially for those who like pizza, pasta, and lasagna, a combination of the three!
1) Ingredients: Italian sausage, pepperoni, tomato sauce, dried oregano, fusilli pasta, mozzarella cheese (I picked up all the ingredients from Trader Joe’s and used the whole package for each except for the mozzarella cheese and oregano to make more than what the recipe called for.)
2) Cook Italian sausage. Slice up and add pepperoni. Add tomato sauce and oregano. (I added pasta sauce to make more sauce because the next step is to cook the pasta in the sauce.)
3) Add fusilli pasta into the sauce. (First time not cooking pasta in boiling water, so the pasta turns out more flavorful in the sauce, but it takes longer to cook the pasta.)
4) Put pasta in a glass container for the oven.
5) Add a layer of mozzarella cheese on top of the pasta and broil in oven until cheese is browned and crispy. Serve and enjoy!
One Pot Pizza Pasta Bake: http://damndelicious.net/2014/08/16/one-pot-pizza-pasta-bake