October 2011 Archives
Week 2 - Side Dishes
Week 3 - Appetizers
Week 4 - Beverages / Desserts / Quick Meals
Week 1 - Main Course
Thanksgiving is right around the corner, and we at AsianFoodGrocer want to help keep you and your dinner guests happy and satisfied. Each week we'll be offering you a new portion of the meal, and over the course of 4 weeks we'll be dishing out recipes for appetizers, side dishes, the main course, desserts and alcoholic beverages.
And instead of saving the most important for last, we're going to take care of it first. So here it is, folks: The Main Course.
We've arranged three options for your main course this Thanksgiving.
First up is a meal called Yuzu and Honey Turkey. It is a slow cooked, sweet and savory meal that is flavored with the unique tastes of yuzu, honey, ginger, and even a little Ramune soda. It amounts to a tender and juicy meat that ends up with a fantastic glaze and a wonderfully satisfying flavor.
This next dish is for those who are craving a meal that's a little less on the sweet side. It's our Teriyaki Turkey and it's one of our favorite fusion dishes. The turkey is braised with a succulent and savory combination of brown sugar, ginger, sliced onions, mirin and soy sauce. It is a little bit more buttery and zesty than the Yuzu turkey, and may be just the way to go to spice up your Thanksgiving meal this year.
Our last meal today is made for the kitchen novices, and is much simpler than the previous two. It is our Cantonese Barbecue Pork. It makes for a delicious pork dish, and if marinated properly will end up tender, juicy, and with a wonderfully rich and succulent texture. Try this if you feel turkey is a bit overrated, or if you're looking for something new, but not too difficult to try this year.
This week is also the start of our Housewares Sale. Any order $30 or more will save 10% off on our Chopsticks and Kitchen Category. We're doing this category sale early so you can get everything you need to create the perfect Thanksgiving meal.
We've got Rice Steamers to create the most perfectly textured rice. Knives so sharp they'll carve your turkey into the most pristine pieces possible. We recommend the Japanese Senzou Kitchen Knife as a great all around knife, plus it looks really cool!
We've also got your Tea Cups available for discount, your Cooking Chopsticks, Measuring Spoons, Kids' Bowls- and if you're feeling like really making this Thanksgiving special you can get a whole new Dish Set. Our favorite is the Dark Stoneware Set. But maybe all you REALLY need this Thanksgiving is a Portable Ashtray for that one Aunt who can't take a hint. *Cough cough.
We hope you take advantage of the great deals we're offering this holiday season. All you have to do is put the coupon code in when checking out, "dealOTweek". We're excited to provide you with the best stuff we can, and we're working hard to make this Thanksgiving a great, and inexpensive one for everyone. And if you've tried any of our recipes, please send us a picture or a video and we'll put it up on the website. Happy cooking everyone!
Week 2 - Side Dishes
The first recipe we've got for you is called Deep Fried Prawns with Batter (Jow Ha). It's a super tasty side dish that will have just the right amount of crunch and flavor to keep your guests hooked. And we recommend using Panko Bread Crumbs in place of the traditional deep frying methods because they absorb much less oil and are a lot healthier.
The next recipe we've got lined up for you is Spring Rolls, a healthy and tasty Asian snack. Spring rolls are a thin piece of rice paper, about the size of a small tortilla, with a series of vegetables and meat inside. It offers a crisp, crunchy, and delicious meal. You can also try it with a variety of different Dips or Sauces, or you can experiment with your own Home-Made Sauce to get that perfect balance.
Our third and final recipe for this week is called Sesame Udon Noodles. These noodles are a spicy, savory dish, loaded with healthy and tasty veggies, and they offer a texture that only udon noodles can provide. Prepare them with any type of meat if you wish, and we recommend you make a big batch because it's going to go fast.
This week also begins the start of our Asian Food Category. You heard that right, anything you want out of our Asian Food Category is qualified for a 10% off discount, as long as it's $30 or more.
This includes our Desserts, Tofu Products, Organic Foods, and even our Imported Bread Category if you missed that last week. Browse through what we've got, and you're sure to find something perfect for your Thanksgiving feast.
You can try using Seaweed for garnish or as a condiment, or Red Beans as a sweet side or topping, or even some Organic Honey to top off your dessert.
Remember, all you need to do to take advantage of our great deals is to input the coupon code during checkout: dealOTweek. We hope this helps you with your Thanksgiving dinner, and as always, if you use any of our recipes, send in some pictures. Tell us what you think! Show us you care. Happy cooking everyone.Week 3 - Appetizers
Hello all, thanks for checking in with us again this week. In this blog we're going to go over our Appetizers. We've got three great recipes for you to try, and they should all be great starters for any meal.
The first recipe we've got lined up for you is called Breaded Tofu Cutlets. It's a deliciously crunchy and savory appetizer, with breaded and fried tofu. It'll go well with a variety of sauces, and because the concept is fairly simple, it should work with a lot of decorations and garnishes to add character to the dish. And because it's light and not super filling it makes for an ideal appetizer because it will leave plenty of room for the main course.
The next is a classic fusion dish with inspiration from the California West Coast and Japanese cuisine. It's the California Roll! This appetizer is very easy to make, and after a little bit of practice you'll be making dozens of rolls in no time at all. Try them with Soy Sauce, or make your own dips and sauces. California rolls are a great appetizer because they're tasty, light, and won't fill you up before the big show.
The last recipe we've got for you this week is Fried Dumplings with Hot Sauce. It's a great choice for those interested in trying a timeless Asian dish. The appetizer calls for a mixture of shrimp, scallops and pork, and has many great ingredients like Minced Ginger Root, chili paste, Sesame Oil, and Rice Wine. It's a bit more filling than the previous two recipes, but if you limit everyone to only a handful there should be plenty of room left for the main course.
Now, this week we're also doing a discount on all of our Japanese seasonings. It's a 10% discount on any purchase of $30 or more with the coupon code dealOTweek. This means you can get your Soy Sauce to reach that perfect flavor. Or you can get some Curry if you're interested in ignoring our recipes and making a quick and simple appetizer- it's ok, you won't hurt our feeings... much.
You can also take advantage of our Dashi to make fantastic and hearty soups, or you can get all the Sushi Supplies you need to make it an all sushi Thanksgiving.
You might even look into using Gourd Strips to add a degree of beauty to your meal- the strips become soft and malleable in water so that you can fold them into intricate knots, or tie pieces of asparagus together with an edible coil. Or use them to put bows around Chopsticks or silverware.
Whatever you decide to do with your appetizers this Thanksgiving we wish you only the tastiest dishes and hope you all have a wonderful holiday. Happy cooking everyone!
Week 4 - Beverages / dessert / Quick Meals
This is the last section in our Thanksgiving blog series, and we hope you appreciate all the work we've put in for you. We've given you recipes for the main course, appetizers, and side dishes. And now it's time for everything else. And what else could there be, you ask. A lot.
This week we're going to go over: Desserts, Instant meal recipes for those cooking on a budget or preparing snacks for your football buddies, and lastly- adult beverages. Now that's a lot of stuff to cover, so let's get started!
Everyone wants to eat the dessert first, so we won't keep you waiting.
This cupcake recipe is inspired by one of the most recognizable faces to ever come out of Japan. Hello Kitty! These Hello Kitty Cupcakes are absolutely adorable, and will bring a delightful presence to you're your table.
Deep fried ice cream is nothing new, in fact it's thought to date back to an 1893 Chicago World fair, but it is a rewarding challenge to complete. The way it works is the ice cream is chilled colder than most ice creams, and is deep fried only for a few seconds, so that the batter and flour become crisp, but the inside stays cold. Deep fried ice cream is an amazing contradiction, and a fantastic dessert.
If you're a person who believes that you should either go big or go home, then this recipe might be for you. It takes thick and hearty brownies and tops them with a delicious vanilla ice cream, which is then flavored with a succulent and rich fudge that brings the whole recipe together. And if you're really looking for trouble, you can top it all off with whipped cream, a cherry, and some shaved nuts. We know, you love us.
Some people don't like to make a big ordeal out of Thanksgiving, or they like to do it on the cheap. We've prepared two instant meals that you can simply add to some prepared rice, for a filling and great tasting meal. We've also made some recommendations for snacks that will be perfect for lounging around and watching football, or just eating until everyone arrives and the dinner begins.
This is a packet of flavoring that you can add to fried rice or steamed rice. Add in chopped vegetables or meat for a more complete meal, however the food will taste great either way. We have several other types of Instant Seasonings available, and we recommend you check them out if this one isn't quite doing it for you.
This is a simple medium spiced curry that you boil and then add to prepared rice. It offers a hearty texture and full flavored effect. It comes preseasoned and you can add in your own meats and vegetables, or simple eat the veggies ones that come within the pack. We offer several other styles of Curry or Instant Foods that you can check out as well.
This is a simple snack that is also among our most popular. Pour it into a bowl for your guests or leave it in the container- either way it'll move fast. Wasabi peas are exactly what the names says; they are dried peas, with a spicy or savory wasabi coating on the outside. They are then baked so that they become extra crunchy, and make for an excellent finger food.
This is Spicky, but we also have Pretz- both of which can be thought of as potato chips in stick form. They are crunchy, salty, savory little snacks that come several to a pack and are available in a broad array of great tasting flavors. Arrange them for guests to watch football with, or just have them ready when people arrive hungry, but too early for dinner.
Try this mixed drink for an updated version of the classic beverage, Piña Colada. It offers creamy smooth Coconut Milk, combined with a little rum, and just the right amount of Pineapple Ramune. It's the taste of island life brought to your dining room table, and your guests are sure to be pleased.
This recipe is for those looking to venture away from the more traditional range of mixed drinks. It is sweetened with tasty Mango Ramune, but is then spiced up with a dash of white pepper powder. It makes for a great concoction, and is sure to be a big hit at your Thanksgiving dinner.
Ginger is a common ingredient in many mixed drinks. This particular beverage follows that tradition well with an eclectic drink that is a mixture of the bubbly, the sweet, the tart and the delicious. Ginger is an important ingredient, and you'll find it works well in providing a good balance and keeping the drink from becoming too sweet.
We really hope you enjoyed our recipes and our Thanksgiving Deals this season. We put a lot of time and effort into them and we hope that they help bring you to a happier, tastier Thanksgiving. Please email if you have an questions or concerns about the recipes or products, and as always, if you use any of our recipes, tell us about it! Love it, hate it, wish it had a different ingredient- let us know. Thanks for reading everyone, and have a Happy Thanksgiving.
This year we're going to start the Holiday season off with a bang, and we're going to cut straight to the chase. YOU like stuff. WE like selling you stuff. YOU like candy. WE like selling you candy. So let's not waste any more time. This October 14th starts off our first sale of the season, and let me tell you, you NEED to cash in on the deal we're offering with our Japanese candy. Every item in our Japanese Candy category is 10% off, with a $30 or more order. Any candy you want, any flavor, any size, any type- as long as it's in the Japanese Candy Category you can have it for 10% off. To get the coupon code just sign up for our Email Blast (the link is on the top of our home page under EMAIL OFFERS) or join us on facebook. Doesn't cost you anything!
Now, this includes the Boston America Sonic the Hedgehog Tin. the Ms. Pacman Tin, even the Nintendo Controller Tin! You can get your Ramune Candy, your Kasugai Litchi and Brown Sugar Candies, and yes- even your Fizzling Cola Candies. Be warned though, they're awesome.
So this Halloween reward the people you care about. Get your friends, your family, and your adoring neighbors the candy they want and deserve. And at the right price too! But remember, this sale is limited, and so are our supplies. This is an extended Deal, and if you've been following our Deal of the Weekend Sales, you know they only last for the weekend, but this one is stretching from Friday, October 14th to Tuesday, October 18th. Just because we like you that much = )
And in the following weeks we'll be having similar category sales. You can expect sales on Cooking Utensils, Japanese Seasonings, Japanese Toys, and of course- Jacobs Coffee. Now, each sale is limited to its own week- there are unfortunately no ongoing sales. This week happens to be for Japanese Candy, and the following week- well you'll just have to wait and see.
We'll also be going over some recipe ideas to help make this Thanksgiving unique and delicious, but with a healthy twist. Each week we're going to devote time to one part of the meal. First we'll go over the Main Course, because that is the star of the show. Then we'll touch on appetizers, side dishes, and lastly we'll have a week devoted to desserts, beverages, and instant meals. Just for those stragglers.
So if you don't want to miss out on these fantastic holiday deals, and some excellent Thanksgiving recipes, stay tuned! Keep an eye on our site!
Everyone's seen the commercials by now. "Diet pills." "Lose 10 pounds in a week." "Eat anything you want and get skinny." "No need to exercise ever again."
There is a huge market for lose-weight-fast products, and for good reason- people want to get healthy. They want to find a real way to manage weight, and to maintain that weight, especially in a time when it's so easy to eat fast food and live a sedentary life style. But because the market is so big, it is riddled with scams, con artists, and untested diet products that have the potential to severely damage your health.
But we at AsianFoodGrocer are here to educate. We want to help you avoid the scams; we want to explain the science of weight loss, and show you how the scammers warp the facts to get your money. Today we're going to be focusing primarily on something called Glucomannan. You may have heard of it, and if you Google it you'll get just under a million results.
Glucomannan is a naturally occurring polysaccharide and a strong soluble fiber. It has the ability to absorb several times its weight in water, and many trials have been conducted to see how it affects weight loss. A lot of these trials have shown to be effective in aiding with the treatment of constipation, high cholesterol and obesity. The results of these trials have been out for a number of years, and for the last decade or two, Glucomannan has been packaged into a pill. It's been sold and misleadingly branded as a miracle diet pill that will fix all your weight problems almost overnight.
And here's the thing, Glocumannan does help to control weight- but not in the way that these companies were promising. You can see the complaint filed by the Federal Trade Commission as well as the lawsuit information here. Companies who were brandishing the diet pills as a miraculous weight loss solution were fined about 1.5 million dollars. The Australian Government banned the sale of the pills, and there were even incidents of choking hazards with the diet pills in Canada. As you can see, these companies took a product that had potential to help people lose weight, and they marketed it as a sensational diet pill that could control weight, regardless of a person's diet or lifestyle.
So here's how it all works. Glucomannan IS a powerful weight loss aid. It works by absorbing water and expanding within the stomach. The effect of this is that people who eat it feel more full, and they eat less food over the course of a meal. Adding Glucomannan rich foods into your diet means that you'll be eating less every time you eat. You'll be taking in fewer calories, less cholesterol, less sugar, and most importantly, less fat. In short, you're eating until you feel full, but you're still eating less than you usually do, so you're dieting without really being aware of it. Combine this with a decent exercise regiment as well as some tasty vegetables, and you'll be well on your way to better weight and health. You won't be losing 6-10 pounds a week as some of the scamming companies promise, but you will see results over time.
We don't recommend you take the diet pills though. They have a noted choking hazard, and there haven't been enough studies done to condone the use of Glucomannan by itself. So does that mean you should just ignore the stuff altogether? Of course not. Just eat it where it occurs naturally. Shirataki Noodles are a great source of Glucomannan. The noodles come from the konjac root in tropical and sub-tropical countries in Asia, and it has been common among Asians' diets for hundreds, even thousands of years in some places.
These noodles have been getting a lot of press over the last few years. They've been on the Dr. Oz show a couple times. Rachel Ray featured them, and a lot of dieticians are recommending them. We started carrying them because our customers asked for it, and the more we learn about Shirataki, the more we like it.
The noodles are pretty much empty. They have almost no taste- they have little to no calories, carbs or sugar. They have no fat, no gluten, and no cholesterol. But they're effective because they will take on the taste of whatever they are prepared with, whether it's garlic Parmesan, an Italian marinara sauce, or a hearty meat stew.
The idea is that you incorporate the Shirataki Noodles into your meals. Replace your typical high-carb noodles with them, pair them with your meat dishes, put them into your stir-fries and casseroles. You'll eat less of the actual meal, meaning you'll take in fewer carbs and calories, but you're still eating so that you're full. It's a handy way to eat foods that taste good, while avoiding the overeating that leads to obesity, diabetes, and heart disease.
Now, we're not going to make any wild claims about Shirataki noodles or Glucomannan. It is an effective diet tool, and it will help you take in less food- most likely the soluble fiber will even help maintain the health of your digestive tract. But it's not a problem solver by itself, you should still limit the fried chicken and the greasy fast food, and you should still exercise a couple times a week if you're expecting to see real, noticeable results.
The stuff won't magically cure heart disease or cancer, but it will help you get healthy, and a healthy body stands a much better chance against nasty things like cancer and disease than an unhealthy body.
The point that we'd like to stress is that diet and exercise is really the only way to achieve and maintain proper health and weight over time. Crazy diets and weight loss pills might shave off a few pounds for a week, but they won't keep it off, and they might even end up hurting you more in the end. We at AsianFoodGrocer encourage you to avoid the scams of lose-weight-fast products. And if you'd like a tool to help you eat less, then try incorporating Shirataki noodles into your diet- but most importantly, make an effort to get off the couch a few times a week. Your body will thank you, and the extra time you have on this Earth will be all the more wonderful because you earned it.