Holiday Dinner 2011

Jan 2, 2012 by

The holidays were a blast this year and we had a great time by celebrating with a Kamikaze Chef dinner on December 11th. I wanted to try something new and went with a Tapas theme. My hope was to serve individual small plates as they were ready, course by course, and I think it turned out well! We started with some hearty appetizers: a trio of meatballs (pictures of each below), baked tomato and Parmesan bites, Hot Dates, and crab cake stuffed mushrooms. The last two were Angela’s contribution to the dinner and, boy, were they delicious. For the mystery ingredients, we got a plethora of fresh veggies and fruit. The Kamikaze Chef “who brought what” book didn’t get passed around so I’m not exactly sure who brought what, but here were all the...

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Gluten-free New Years Eve

Jan 2, 2012 by

This New Year’s Eve was very special because I got to spend it with Beth, Chris and their guests for a gluten-free Chinese Kamikaze Chef dinner! I was thrilled to accept the challenge of an entirely gluten-free meal and did my research before planning the appetizer menu. The Chinese cuisine is easily adaptable to GF dishes when you use organic Tamari (wheat-free soy sauce) and other gluten-free versions of sauces. The one sauce I could not find any GF varieties of was oyster sauce, which is a key ingredient in many Chinese dishes. For the first appetizer, I made gluten-free pot stickers from scratch. I tried my hand at the dough using corn flour, but that kept falling apart. Beth informed me later that in any type of gluten-free baking, you want to mix...

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Breakfast for Dinner

Nov 30, 2011 by

In October, the weekend after the Halloween party at Lyndi’s, I hosted a “Breakfast for Dinner” themed dinner at my place. Who does”t love breakfast for dinner!!?? The appetizers I had in mind were lox and cream cheese crustinis and french toast sticks with homemade maple syrup. The lox and cream cheese crustinis were simple, little bites with onion and capers on french bread slivers: I didn’t get a starting picture of the french bread dipping sticks, but you can see how popular they were. I ended up having to use garlic butter Texas toast as the bread because I couldn’t find any regular Texas toast. I wiped off some of the excess butter and garlic, but they were still very present in the flavor. Surprisingly, everyone drooled at how yummy they were and...

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Sirloin and Eggplant Stacker

Oct 24, 2011 by

This dish is something I came up with during the Easter Kamikaze Chef dinner. I’ve refined it and am posting the recipe below. The sirloin is encrusted in a unique blend of pepitas (shelled pumpkin seeds), green peppercorns and parsley and I use French’s Fried Onions to coat the eggplant on the bottom. Ingredients for 2 servings: 1 medium eggplant, cut into 1” thick rounds 1/2 cup French”s Fried Onions, coarsely chopped 2 eggs 2 cloves garlic, minced 4 tablespoons unsalted butter 1/2 cup Shiitake mushrooms 1/2 cup Portabella mushrooms 1 red bell pepper Extra Virgin Olive Oil 1/2 lb top sirloin filet 1/4 cup pepitas (You can find these in most grocery stores, sometimes just called pumpkin seeds, out of their shells. I get mine at Trader Joe”s and I get the roasted,...

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Pizza Night

Oct 6, 2011 by

Two weekends ago, I traveled out to my friend Lyndi’s house for a Pizza Night with the kids! It was also the first night I used my new tabletop photo studio. I still have a lot to learn, so bear with me on the pictures, but I think they turned out pretty good! For appetizers, I made two versions of Pigs in a Blanket, an easy kid-friendly snack. I used organic turkey dogs and crescent rolls for the kids and then used two varieties of chicken sausage wrapped in puff pastry for the adults. I also made two types of bruschetta. One was a roasted tomato & garlic topping and the other was artichoke & Parmesan mixture. I realized too late that I didn’t have any mayonnaise and ended up using Vegenaise with a...

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Asian Inspired Dinner

Sep 21, 2011 by

This past Saturday night I hosted some of my co-workers and their guest(s) at my house for a Kamikaze Chef dinner! When I told my mom what I was doing, her response, with a worried look, was “That’s brave…”. Thanks for the words of encouragement, Mom! It all turned out just fine and everyone had a great time. I decided to revisit the Asian Inspired theme and focus on Thai and Chinese. For appetizers, I made Shrimp Summer Rolls with Sweet Chili Sauce and a Peanut dipping sauce. I made the peanut sauce using creamy peanut butter, hoisin, and a few other ingredients. It might have been the most delicious thing I’ve ever tasted. If you’ve never made Summer Rolls, they are kind of a pain. First there’s all the chopping of the ingredients...

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Baked Alaskan Cod

Aug 17, 2011 by

Last night I invited a friend over to try out a new recipe and I think it turned out really well. I got the idea from a combination of different recipes I’ve tried in the past and a few techniques I’ve never attempted. Here’s the complete recipe as best as I can remember it: Seared and Baked Alaskan Cod with a Sour Cream/Horseradish Aioli and Panko, Sage and Turkey Bacon Crust Ingredients – 2 6-oz Cod Filets Salt Pepper 2 Tbls olive oil 1/4 cup Sour Cream 1/4 cup horseradish 2 Tbls Dijon mustard Juice of 1 lemon Zest of 1 lemon Panko bread crumbs 2 slices Turkey Bacon (cooked, patted dry, and chopped) 1 Tbls Sage Flat parsley Pre-heat oven to 425°F. Start the sour cream mixture by whisking it with the mustard,...

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Aug 10, 2011 by

Two weeks ago Saturday I had the privilege of cooking for a group of folks at a friend’s house, which came with a few perks. It wasn’t the first time I’ve cooked at another person’s house, but usually I know almost everyone at the table. This time, I only knew the host & hostess, Kumar & Jill, who I met through Angela (who usually helps me in the kitchen), and Angela herself was in attendance. There were a total of 16 guests, so that means it was the first Kamikaze Chef dinner for 14 new people! Very exciting! I also had the pleasure of working in their gorgeous kitchen. If I could build my own kitchen, it would be modeled after this one. To top things off, my amazing friend and professional photographer, Melissa...

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Sushi Making Class

Aug 2, 2011 by

On the heels of my Year Anniversary dinner, a few friends suggested I teach them how to make their own sushi. So, last night, I hosted a small group at my place and had all the ingredients to make fresh sushi! From one of my local Japanese food markets, I purchased sashimi-grade tuna and salmon, as well as a filet of eel and tamago (smelt roe). Additionally, I prepared some spicy mayo by combining Japanese mayo (Kewpie) and sriracha hot sauce. After leading them through the first roll, we set off to create some pretty fantastic rolls. Here are a few good shots:             I will definitely do this again! Let me know who wants to come to the next...

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Year Anniversary Dinner

Jul 24, 2011 by

Last Saturday night I had the year anniversary dinner for The Kamikaze Chef. Many of the attendees were veterans to the process, but a few had never experienced the dinner before. It was a great mix! I had 25 people RSVP, and let me tell you, I was a bit nervous to have that many people in my house! At the last minute, though, I had about 5 people send their regrets, so that calmed me down a little bit. I picked the theme of Japanese and bought a ton of ingredients to make sushi, tempura and curry, plus a few traditional Japanese candies and all the supplies needed to eat everything above (chopsticks, wasabi, ginger, etc). I also rented a table and chairs so I had enough comfortable seating for all 19 people:...

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