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Thread: Cafe Topaz Eats

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    Default Cafe Topaz Eats

    Since I got my own apartment I've been cooking for myself a fair amount, and some of the stuff I've made has turned out really well. (Most of the stuff in fact, it's pretty awesome to cook for yourself.) I thought I'd share a little bit and show a few photos of the stuff I made. Beware! Terrible photography! My hands are shaky I can't really help it.


    This is cold udon with cut carrots and cucumbers. I put some soy sauce and sesame oil and green onions too. On the side there is chawanmushi, which is a Japanese steamed egg dish made with chicken stock. I did the steamed egg in a lazy way though and didn't pre-boil the water or run the egg through a sieve first, and didn't add chicken or mushrooms or any of the stuff, so it's not silky smooth though it's not too bad. But it's still one of my favourite dishes.


    This is the brunch I made my roommate for Canadian thanksgiving. Just standard French toast, strawberries, cinnamon sugar and hashbrowned potatoes. Breakfast is the meal I've longest known how to make so it turned out well.


    Another set of French toast I made for myself. Tried to arrange it nicely though it's kind of clumsy when I see it again.


    Here's pepper New York steak with caramelized onions, steamed bok choy and mashed potatoes. Rare steak, of course.


    This is a Chinese dish called Cai Fan which is pretty easy to make. You just cut up some Chinese sausage and cook it with the rice in the rice cooker, and five minutes or so before it's done you mix in some stirfried bok choy. I added two hardboiled eggs for some more variety.

    Since a lot of you are in or starting college/university by now I assume some of you have started experimenting with recipes as well? Post them up here if you do, I'm missing someone to nerd out about food with since my roommate doesn't really care about cooking.

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    Your photography isn't so horrible. There's some blurriness, especially in the steak pic, but it's really not bad for someone who isn't devoted to photography. I especially like that picture with the brunch. But that could have something to do with how tasty it looks.

    Moving on to the food:
    I'm a horrible picky eater. I won't eat Chinese, Indian, or Mexican food. Don't even eat pizza, which is almost unheard of around here. But I do like the appearance and smell of all kinds of food. The brunch I already mentioned looks especially appealing to me right now (added bonus; it's basically all stuff that I'd actually eat).
    It seems like a lot of kids at my college aren't looking forward to cooking, but I think it could be fun. I wouldn't be making fancy stuff like this, but there is room for a lot of creativity in food.
    But for now, I'm living in a residence hall, eating from dining halls. Which is nice, since it doesn't require work, but the menu can be a bit repetitive for a picky eater like me.

    And of course, the big question; have you tried your hand at any desserts? My aunt is really into cooking (particularly desserts), and has kind of made me become interested.
    Plus chocolate is delicious.

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    I'm not usually much of a dessert person so I usually just eat a bowl of frozen grapes and call it a day. It doesn't help that my oven doesn't work so I can't bake anything. When I went to my friend's place for Thanksgiving, though, we made homemade pumpkin pie together. That was pretty great! It had some interesting ingredients, like ginger and brandy. Next time if we do it again we'll probably tone down on the ginger though.

    I was in rez last year, and a meal plan was mandatory. My group of friends were kind of the food crazy group so we spent a lot of last year wishing for a kitchen and talking about all the kinds of food we'd make and eat when we finally moved out haha.

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    Some more food and pictures!


    This is Puerto Rican breakfast custard. I made it with soy milk (didn't have any milk lying around), cinnamon, honey and egg. Basically you beat them all together and simmer it slowly for half an hour while stirring. Then you eat it on top of bread. It was pretty good!


    This is basa fillet that I cooked in olive oil, soy sauce and lime, red chili pepper, with sweet potato fries (pan fried with cinnamon, salt, olive oil and red chili pepper) and some broccoli. I wish I had a working oven so I could bake the sweet potato fries, but alas pan frying them will have to do. Those are a lot of work to do though, you have to cut them up and cook them for quite a while.


    This is a beef stew I made with celery, carrots and potato over brown rice. The best part about stew is that you make enough for 3-4 meals. The worst part about stew is that your roommate wants some and suddenly you only have enough for 2 meals :/

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    Geez, you're making me hungry...and if there's one thing I love no matter what I'm feeling, it's food. =D

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    I haven't updated this thread in a fair while, so let's share a few more pics!


    This is homemade chili. I topped it with an egg just because? It's actually pretty easy to make, you just cook the ground beef, add spices, kidney beans, whatever vegetables you want and pretty much let it sit for a couple hours.


    This is Moroccan chickpea and spinach stew. Some places on campus serve this, it's one of my favourite dishes that they serve. So I looked it up and found out how to make it myself! It's actually fairly involved. The secret ingredient is garlic fried bread. You fry garlic gloves in oil and then remove the garlic, fry the bread in the oil, and mash the bread up with a bunch of spices to put into the stew. It's delicious!


    This is sweet and sour pork, with red and green bell peppers. Here I used orange juice instead of pineapple juice because I didn't have any of the latter. I like the homemade version a lot better since the Chinese fast-food places tend to put too much sauce and have kind of soggy pork. I like it crisp and mild so the way I make it is much preferable to me.


    This is a prawn pancake I made off of a website I found. It's kind of fun, but shelling all those prawns is really time consuming. Mine also didn't quite turn out like the picture on the site, I think it's because my pan doesn't tend to brown things very well.


    This is my most successful curry attempt. It's chicken curry with yogourt and coconut milk added in. It turned out amazing! I was super pleased with the results.

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