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Spicy Miso Ramen Recipe

I think this has to be the most requested recipe on my instastories! I didn’t even manage to take a good photo of my ramen because I didn’t think it would be this popular! So the picture up here is a screenshot from my stories! We leave for Singapore next week and i’m not even going to bring my laptop with me so figured I’d better write it up today, also that I don’t forget what I put in it because I did make this up as I went! In general, i would say to taste as you go and adjust your seasonings based on your personal taste. It should be mostly salty with a hint of sweetness.

What you will need:

A packet of fresh ramen noodles ( you can find it in the fresh noodle section at any asian grocer in the US, or a specialty japanese store if in other parts of the world)

5 cloves of garlic, chopped

2 inch knob of ginger, grated

1/3 lb ground pork

3 tbsp miso paste

2 tbsp thai spicy shrimp based chilli paste ( main ingredients in the paste should be shrimp, chillis, onion, garlic )

1 tbsp sesame oil

6 cups to 8 cups chicken stock ( eyeball it )

1.5 tbsp sugar

1 tbsp sake

1 tsp salt

Toppings:

  • Ramen egg
  • Corn kernels
  • green onion/scallion (Chopped)
  • nori (seaweed)
  • Pickled red ginger

Directions:

In a soup pot, on medium heat, add 1 tbsp sesame oil, chopped garlic, grated ginger and ground pork. stir fry til cooked and fragrant. add miso paste and chilli paste. stir til mixed well. add chicken stock and seasonings. Simmer for 20 to 30mins.

To make ramen egg:

add room temperature eggs to a pot of already boiling water. turn on timer to 7mins. Lower heat to medium or where water is not bubbling and more still so that the eggs are not bouncing around. When the timer is up, remove eggs from the pot and let sit in shell for 5minutes. Very gently remove the shell.

In a separate zip lock bag, add 2 tbsp soya sauce, 2 tbsp mirin, 1/2 tbsp sugar, and a splash of water ( taste seasoning and add more water to dilute if necessary – but remember it’s a marinade so it has to be strong enough in flavor) – add eggs to the bag and marinade for at least 2 hours, ideally 4 to 5 hours or overnight.

 

 

 

 

Summer Vacation Outfit Edit

Finally! I’ve been curating vacation outfits for our upcoming Singapore & Bali trip, especially given that i was pregnant for practically the past year! So yes I’m excited to be shopping for regular clothes again and revamping my wardrobe ( I tend to find myself doing a huge closet clean out every Summer – so refreshing! ) Moreover, with each year that passes, I find my style evolving more. I take less risk & prefer simpler pieces. I am not a fan of layering and like designs that speak for themselves and don’t need much styling. Being a mother of 2 also means finding pieces that are practical to wear while juggling to babies in my arms! The number of times i’ve fallen prey to stunning deep v low cut pieces, only to find that when I wear them, first of all do they not look as good as the model who has perky fake boobs, but also that my boobs are falling out all over the place as I bend over to pick Emma up. The idea of fashion tape is nice but I tried it, and nope. Don’t have time for that right now.

I’ve lately been a fan of shopping for slightly more expensive well made pieces that will last a long time since they are pretty simple classic styles that won’t go out of fashion.

I’ll link below all my favorite websites that I’ve been shopping at!

Oh and. Bali is going to be a test of my self confidence. Not only did I JUST have a baby 2 months ago, I nursed 2 babies and my once already small boobs are now even smaller! I guess they do “deflate” after nursing. But that’s ok because I found 2 stunning bathing suits by For Love & Lemons  ( how crazy is it that they were my office neighbor in the garment district when I was in the city!)  – These have cups so maybe it’ll give me a little boost. They arrive in the mail today and I can’t wait to receive them!

For shoes, especially while on vacation, I’m looking for comfortable shoes. Easy to slip on and off, especially going through all that security checks at 503482034 different airports! I’ve really been into slides because they’re so easy to wear! Especially these D&G slides that are currently 40% off!!

So here are the links to some of my favorite places to shop lately!

For Love & Lemons

Revolve Clothing

Reformation

Topshop 

My Theresa

SSense 

Farfetch

I know it’s still 2 months til our vacation, but I think time will fly! I am SO ready for a much needed break from baby madness!

Where are you headed for holiday this Summer?

X

Alicia

 

Turkey Veggie Patties with Mint Chutney

Ahhh! so i may have boasted a whole lot about these turkey veggie patties on my instastories the last few days, but omg! thery were amazing! not only amazing but super healthy! I used 98% lean turkey mixed in with ground broccoli and cauliflower. How much healthier can you get! Don’t mind my abrupt introduction as i’m feeding elizabeth with one hand and typing with the other. All in all the biggest success with this recipe is that the hubby thoroughly loved it!! I’ve found myself cooking with more spices to enhance flavors while keeping the recipe healthy because I have to lose this baby weight in time for Bali in 2 months!! If you try this out please let me know!!x

I made another batch today to freeze individually for a quick healthy meal on the go whenever I don’t have time to cook! Thats how much both Mike & I loved it! Ok so here goes!

 

Turkey Veggie Patties with Mint Chutney

Ingredients
1/2 broccoli crown
1/2 cauliflower head
1.5 medium sized yellow onions (carmelized on the stove )
3 teaspoons chopped garlic
1 pound 98% lean turkey
1 egg
1/2 cup bread crumbs
1 tbsp flour
2 tbsp fat free Greek yogurt

Seasoning ( you can adjust according to your taste preference. This is just a rough guide. I actually eyeballed it)
4 tsp Seasoned salt
1 tsp Black pepper
1 tsp Garam masala
1 tsp Cumin seeds
1/2 tsp Fenugreek
1 tsp Coriander
1/2 tspTandoori seasoning
1/4 tsp Red pepper flakes
1 tsp Paprika
1 tsp turmeric
1 1/2 tsp sugar

Directions:

Chop & carmelize 1 1/2 yellow onion & set aside.

Ground up raw broccoli & cauliflower in a food processor together with 1/2 carmelized yellow onion. Set aside.

In a mixing bowl, throw in the rest of the ingredients & seasonings and mix til just combined. Do not over mix the meat mixture or the patties will be dry. Add ground vegetables to the meat mixture and mix til just combined.

Grill or bake patties in an oven at 375F for 15mins

Mint cucumber Chutney

ingredients:

1 cup fat free Greek yogurt
Palm full of mint leaves
Salt & pepper to taste
1/2 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp olive oil
1 green onion

1 cucumber

 

Directions:

Blend all ingredients except cucumber in a food processor! Slice cucumbers and stir into sauce. Serve cold. 

Arugula Avocado Pesto Pasta

OMG. This pasta dish was amazing. I wasn’t sure how it was going to turn out as I just threw a bunch of random ingredients that I happened to have in my fridge together. Boy did it turn out fantastic!!

I ate 2 big bowls of it and had leftovers the next door for lunch.

My pesto recipe is a relatively healthy one as I barely used any olive oil & only 2-3 tbsp of grated parmesan in the entire recipe that serves 4 to 5. So it’s mostly veggies!!

Lets get to the recipe because you guys really need to try this!! It would be the perfect weeknight guilt free pasta dish, filling and comforting at the same time. Oh, and takes no time to make at all! Super quick and easy.

pestopasta

I hope you enjoy. X

Arugula Avocado Pesto Pasta

What you will need:

3 cups arugula

1 cup mint

4 cloves of garlic

3 tbsp freshly grated parmesan

1 tbsp olive oil

Juice of 1 fresh lemon

1 ripe avocado

Salt & pepper to taste

Red pepper flakes

Penne Pasta (or any pasta of your choice)
Directions:

Boil a pot of water and cook penne pasta according to package instructions. Make sure it’s just al dente and not overcooked. Also make sure to salt the water. Once cooked, drain & sat aside.

In a food processor, blend together the arugula, mint, garlic, parmesan, olive oil and lemon juice until smooth. About 2 minutes. Then add ripe avocado & blend for another 30seconds or til smooth and creamy. Season with salt & pepper to taste.

In a large mixing bowl, toss warm pasta with the pesto & sprinkle generously with red pepper flakes. You can serve it warm or cold. I absolutely loved it cold out of the fridge the next day! Now, how easy was that??

*Optional: You can broil slices of proscuitto in the oven til crispy and top over the pasta. I did that at the very end and it was sooooo sumptuous!

 

Learning to love my pregnancy body

I am 36 + 1 weeks today and in major nesting mode. I had a nightmare last night that Elizabeth was going to come next week and I was completely unprepared. I then woke up to an extremely clingy 2 year old because she saw us unpacking alot of her newborn “stuff” out of boxes and all of a sudden she wanted to be a baby again. It seems from other moms’ experiences that this is quite normal.. but it was nonetheless quite unbearable how clingy she was especially when you’re trying to actually get things done.

I’d be lying if I said I haven’t been super high strung and stressed out lately. I had scheduled to have our nanny come for just 3 hours today because I really just wanted some grown up alone time with my husband without any distraction. I wanted to re-connect with him because that connection gives me so much strength to power through a difficult day.

In my mind, I had planned to dress really cute, throw on some heels and feel good about myself. But as I rushed to get ready 30minutes before we were supposed to leave the house, I was changing out of outfit after outfit, nothing fit right, no bottoms fit my belly, and it was really cold out today. I didn’t have a whole lot of options. Couple this with my stress level from everything else, I was about to burst out in tears. Over something sooooo silly. I know. But I think any mom would relate to this.

The insecurity about your body that pregnancy can bring is real. My body though through pictures looked pretty much the same after I had Emma, it’s not. My linea nigra never fully went away, and then I became pregnant again. So now it’s back. My belly button is now a completely different shape than pre baby, and the skin on my belly does not have the same elasticity that it did pre baby no matter how tight my abs are. That’s the reality. My nipples are darker than pre baby, and as strange as it sounds, it’s one of the things that really bothers me. Maybe because there’s absolutely nothing I can do about it. One boob sits lower than the other because I nursed Emma a lot more on one side.

I am so flattered by the lovely messages you guys send me complimenting how good I looked after having Emma and through this pregnancy. But inside, I still have my insecurities. It’s so hard to look stylish, to not look like a whale, to feel good about myself.

That being said, I’ve learnt so much from my first pregnancy with Emma. In my first pregnancy, I was extremely insecure about my body because I didn’t know how my body would recover post pregnancy. I held on so tightly to my physical appearance pre baby. It was like my physical body was my identity.

This time, for the most part of my pregnancy i’ve been very good about maintaining a positive body image, and reminding myself that carrying and growing a human being for 10months is such an amazing thing that I am privileged to experience, and the gift at the end of it all, my sweet little baby, is way more precious than any pregnancy scar or dark nipples that “bothers me so much”. I also remind myself that post baby this time, I’m still going to have to deal with the loose skin and excess weight for a while until I can get back into a work out routine. I’m going to have to be patient to allow my linea nigra time to fade, and I’m not going to look like a hollywood celebrity mama who gave birth a week ago and immediately has a flawless bikini body. And I surely don’t need to put that kind of pressure on myself.

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As mothers, we deserve so much credit for what we put our bodies through throughout the 10months of pregnancy. And we absolutely deserve to take those bodily changes as a badge of achievement rather than a scar. Some of them will eventually fade and some will stay with us forever. We ought to find beauty in the ones that remain, because it will remind us everytime we see it, how strong we are, for ourselves and for our children who will forever be our babies whom we carried in our womb for 10months.

There is nothing special in this outfit that I finally managed to pull together, but I wanted to share it because before I finally got dressed, I caught myself allowing my mind to be so negative about my pregnant body that it was making me so upset. And I stopped myself in time. I told myself, so what if i’ve worn this pair of gym pants that has a hole in it somewhere, for the past 3 days? So what if this top makes me look bigger than I really am? And so what if I do look like a whale? I need to embrace and love my body for what it is now because I have a beautiful baby girl nestled in my womb, growing little by little each day to make her entrance into this world.

So while this may not be my favorite outfit I’ve ever worn, sharing it regardless shows even myself that I can be confident in my own preggo mama skin.

ootd0304_1

But yes so I am wearing the same yoga pants that I wear every single day when lounging around the house. I just threw on some heels and a leather jacket to make it look less like yoga pants and more like regular leggings..

So to all my fellow mommies, lets love and embrace our post baby bodies! Or if you happen to have a friend who is pregnant, throw a compliment her way, she deserves it and would appreciate it so much!

And at the end of the day today, our lovely neighbors’ dad who is 83 years old told me when he saw me, “Alicia, do you know my dad once said, the most beautiful woman on earth, is a pregnant woman, because she carries life.”  What more needs to be said?

Love,

Alicia

 

 

 

36 Weeks Pregnancy Update!

How far along?  36 weeks!
Weight gain: 20lbs , I started my pregnancy at 100lbs and am now 120!
Maternity clothes: I refuse to wear them! Mike always laughs at me when I squeeze into my summer rompers or when I let my belly hang out from my super tight non maternity tank tops. Yes those $5 ones from F21. Most of my summer rompers that i’ve been wearing are from Australian online stores that I bought last summer before I found out I was pregnant! Some of my favorites: Little Lace, Sabo Skirt, Runway Scout 
Stretch marks? None, thankfully. I don’t want to jinx it though! I have been using Burts Bees Mama Bee Oil to keep my belly moisturised. It helped me prevent stretch marks throughout my last pregnancy with Emma so i’m hoping it will help this time too!
Sleep: I’ve been having SO much trouble having a good night’s sleep.. Elizabeth kicks and squirms alot, it hurts so much and sometimes jolts me up from my sleep. Also the endless peeing keeps me up at night. So lets just say I am one super exhausted preggo mama and my human alarm clock, Emma, will not let me sleep in.
Best moment this week: I took Emma to Carters for a last minute shopping trip to get some newborn PJS for Elizabeth. I’ve been digging through boxes of Emma’s old clothes but can’t seem to find many newborn or 0-3 months outfits. I’m too tired to be digging any more so I just went out and bought some. It was the cutest thing ever as Emma went around picking outfits out for Elizabeth and herself! She’s such a mini me and surely loves shopping! I also got really excited to meet Elizabeth when I saw all the teeny tiny newborn outfits! 
emmai-2
Miss anything? Getting to wear normal clothes again and actually look good in them!!!! I already bought a rack full of Spring & Summer outfits and I can’t wait to start doing some serious workouts, get back into shape & wear those outfits! I put them on a separate rack in my closet and look at them every morning, because I really can’t wait!! 
Movement: A knee kicking me in my rib every 10minutes. All her limbs are on the right side of my belly so all kicks and punches are unfortunately concentrated in one area, and yes they really hurt!!
Food cravings: Fruit and vegetables!!!!
Anything making you queasy or sick? Nope!
Gender: Girl. Though for a second this week I wondered if they could have got it wrong. Mike said my belly looks super pointy and from chinese old wives tales they say a pointed belly means a boy, a round belly means a girl. But I’ve had 2 ultrasounds since the gender ultrasound and they didn’t see anything so pretty sure it’s a girl!
Labour signs: No, though I am extremely ready to get this baby out! Am so done being pregnant.
Symptoms: Super achy pelvis, sore muscles in my lower belly, and major major lightning crotch. She’s been head down since 32 weeks and I think her head pushes on my cervix. It’s the weirdest most uncomfortable pain ever! Like someone shooting your crotch with a rubber band. From the inside. Yikes.
Belly button in or out? Major outtie. Mike always points it out when I wear my super tight tank tops that have now become crop tops
Happy or moody most of the time: A mix of both but more happy! I love my growing little family and I get so excited just thinking about the fact that there will be 4 of us. Also, my parents come in just a few weeks so it will be a full house and I absolutely can’t wait!
Looking forward to: My parents coming, getting to do a full on workout, get my abs back, watch Emma blossom into a wonderful big sister, and yes. Wear all my new outfits, shoes and accessories that I already bought for the warm weather!!!!
emmai3

Healthy Blueberry Muffins

I have an extremely picky toddler when it comes to food, and so when Emma thoroughly enjoyed the mini blueberry muffins from Whole Foods, I figured I should make some healthy home made muffins for her. I could barely understand any of the ingredients used in the muffins from Whole Foods, a lot of chemical looking names which most probably isn’t a good sign especially when feeding to a toddler who downs 4 or 5 in one sitting!

So I spent this afternoon experimenting while she took her nap, and oh my goodness they turned out so amazing that I ate 2 right out of the oven!

What’s healthy about my blueberry muffin recipe is that there is no oil used at all and the only fat comes from that of 1 egg and about 1/3 cup of unsweetened coconut milk. I used whole wheat and almond flour in place of regular flour and apple sauce in place of oil/butter.

If you love muffins, You HAVE to try this recipe! You can substitute the blueberries with chocolate chips and add cocoa powder if you want a really chocolaty muffin. It was amazing how moist and light the muffin turned out. Best part is that it’s guilt free!!

bluberrymuffins

bluberrymuffins3

It’s super easy to make so I hope you enjoy this recipe! Let me know if you do try making it ! X

 Healthy Blueberry Muffins 

What you will need:

1 cup whole wheat flour

1/2 cup almond meal

1/2 cup + 2 tbsp sugar

1/2 tsp salt

2 tsp baking powder

1/3 cup apple sauce

1 tsp almond extract / vanilla extract (your choice, I used almond! loved it)

1 egg

1/3 cup unsweetened coconut milk

1 heaping cup fresh blueberries

Directions

Preheat oven to 400F / 200C . Line muffin tin with muffin liners

Combine whole wheat flour and almond meal, sugar, salt and baking powder in a large mixing bowl. Add apple sauce to a 1 cup measuring cup, add 1 egg, and fill enough milk to fill up the cup. Mix this into the flour mixture with a whisk until evenly combined. Fold in blueberries. Fill muffin cups generously right to the top.

Bake in the oven for 15 – 16 minutes, or until done.

Serve with a shot of espresso for an afternoon perk me up!

 

 

 

Baked Tofu Wild Rice Chopped Salad

I tossed this salad up as I went and with what I found in my fridge and pantry for a light easy dinner tonight. I haven’t been feeling great, sluggish, super heavily pregnant and just all around BLAH. I saw a photo of a salad one of my friends in Singapore had for lunch today and got inspired to make something similar. I am a major carb lover and if you ask anyone who knows me, they’d tell you I am SO not a salad person. So of course I had to somehow incorporate some carbs into my recipe! My friend had quinoa in hers, but I wanted something a little more substantial so I opted to use wild rice. It turned out amazing both in terms of texture and flavor!

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I made my own Honey Pomegranate Vinaigrette for the salad, and topped it with sliced avocados right at the end just to make it extra filling. This preggo needs her calories! My first trip this morning to Whole Foods to get avocados was a fail because none of them were ripe! So in my dedication / major craving for a bright green creamy avocado, I drove out to Publix at 4pm when Mike got home to watch Emma, just to search for 1 ripe avocado. And I found it!!!!

In all seriousness, I was really just hoping that having lots of veggies today may make me feel better. I chugged a whole bottle of green juice too.

For Mike, I made this salad and some chopped tandoori seasoned chicken into a wrap! He thoroughly enjoyed it! You can also top the salad with smoked salmon or proscuitto (:

Ok so here goes. I hope you enjoy and don’t forget to tag me @aliciatipilly in your pictures if you do recreate this salad or a variation of it ! I love exchanging recipe ideas with you guys! X

Tandoori Tofu Wild Rice Chopped Salad 

What you need:

1 cup of wild rice

1 1/2 cups of water

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 tbsp olive oil

1 package of chopped salad (any kind really.. ideally it would have purple cabbage & carrots in it for some crunch)

1 package of extra firm tofu, cubed

Tandoori seasoning (optional) – you can just use salt and pepper if you prefer

1 ripe avocado

3 – 4 tbsp honey

2 tsp dijon mustard

2 – 3 tbsp pomegranate champagne vinegar OR balsamic vinegar

1 tsp of chia seeds

pinch of sea salt

Salt and pepper to taste

Directions

Pre heat oven to 400F.

Add wild rice, water, salt and olive oil to a pot. Bring to a boil then cover with lid and simmer for 15 minutes. Remove cover and let cool for 30mins.

Season tofu cubes generously with salt, pepper and tandoori seasoning. Spread cubes out on a non stick baking tray and bake in the oven for 20 – 25 minutes or until firm and brown. ( I didn’t use any oil and it browned nicely. You can drizzle some olive oil before baking if you prefer )

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together honey, dijon mustard, pomegranate champagne vinegar or balsamic vinegar, salt, and pepper. (Again, I didn’t add any oil and it was perfect. You can add a tbsp of olive oil if you’d prefer but I find it unnecessary calories)

Add cooled rice, chopped salad, baked tofu to the mixing bowl and toss til evenly coated in the dressing.

Refrigerate salad for at least 30 minutes

Top salad with sliced avocado, pinch of sea salt, and chia seeds before serving.

 

 

Our old but new Spring Favorite: Asparagus, Leek & Spinach Soup

The last time I made this soup before Emma’s birthday yesterday was actually at her one month birthday celebration in 2015 when we were still living in New Jersey. I remember everyone raving about the soup but somehow I never made it again. It was one of those forgotten recipes. So when I was planning out the menu for Emma’s 2nd birthday party and the weather here in North Carolina has been warming up, I figured, why not bring back this soup! I was kind of craving it too, plus you wouldn’t believe how easy and super healthy it is!

I don’t usually make soups with a lot of cream in it, so I love getting all my flavor and richness from sautéing or roasting my vegetables before blending them, and by making my own chicken stock for an added layer of flavour. For a gianormous pot of soup that i’d say serves at least 15 people, like 15 BIG bowls, I used 3 tablespoons of cream. That was it. And it was still SO good. If you have a dairy allergy, skip the cream altogether, I really don’t think it was necessary!

Ok so lets get down to the recipe! I hope you enjoy and let me know in the comments or on instagram if you try out this recipe, I would love to see your food pictures and also if you made some changes to it to make it even better! Im not one to follow recipes strictly and tend to make it up as I go so definitely explore and adjust my recipe to fit your taste buds!(:

Asparagus, Leek & Spinach Soup 

You will need:

  • 2 pounds of asparagus
  • 1 large leek
  • 2 large yellow onions
  • half a package of baby carrots
  • 2 big split chicken breast, bone in
  • 5 cloves of garlic, peeled
  • water enough to fill a large pot covering the chicken breasts
  • half a bag of fresh baby spinach
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • salt and pepper to taste

Slice off bottom 2 inches of your asparagus and set aside. separate top green part of your leek from the white stem and set aside.

Start by making your chicken stock. Bring water to boil in pot and add chicken breast, baby carrots, garlic cloves, 1 large yellow onion, largely diced, bottom stems of the asparagus, and the green stems of 1 large leek. Season with salt to taste and simmer on medium heat for 20mins then turn down heat and simmer on low for 45mins to an hour. Your chicken stock itself should be well season and taste like yummy chicken soup. So be generous with the salt here!

In a separate saute pan, add 1 large yellow onion diced, finely sliced leeks (white part only), and chopped up asparagus into pan. Add 1 tablespoon of olive oil and 1 tablespoon of butter. You can sprinkle some salt and pepper over your vegetables at this point. On medium heat, saute until vegetables and tender and aromatic.] Usually about 10 to 15minutes. It’s ok if the bottom of the pan browns a little, in fact it’s great as that gives it more flavor. If you are lazy, instead of sauteing on the stove, throw all the vegetables in the oven on a roasting pan and roast for 20minutes at 425F.

When your chicken stock is done, strain out all vegetables and chicken, leaving stock in your stockpot. You can shred up the chicken breast and top your soup with it. I shredded up the chicken breast for my other shrimp salad recipe instead.

Add all sauteed vegetables to your stock pot with the stock and stir, simmering for another 5minutes on low heat. Using an immersion blender or stand up blender, add fresh baby spinach and blend entire soup mixture til smooth and silky. If using a stand up blender, work in smaller batches so your soup doesn’t fly everywhere! and be very careful, put a cloth over the lid and hold it down tight as the steam can get really hot and you don’t want your lid flying off or burn your hand!

Once nicely blended (usually takes a good 1.5 to 2 minutes in the blender on high), pour back into a soup pot.

Add sugar, salt and pepper to taste, and then finish off with the 3 tbsp of cream if using. For how much sugar you need, it really depends on how flavorful the yellow onions you used are. So just adjust accordingly.

*tip. If making ahead, don’t add the cream until the day you are serving the soup.

You can only serve the soup with Italian bread sticks like I did.

Enjoy!!!X

 

 

 

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