Sunday, January 13, 2013

Some birthdays deserve 2 cakes, don't ya think?

Turning 17 meant a Korean feast and 2 cakes; I love my girl (and my tummy) that much!  

We began with Elly's request - Bulgogi:  slices of beef & veg in a pureed marinade of soy sauce, onion, garlic, an apple and an Asian pear.  Sweet & delicious!  We also had my favorite - Jeyuk Bokem:  slices of pork & veg in a marinade of soy, Gochujang (spicy red bean paste), garlic and sugar.  Just a touch of bite!  We had steamed rice, Elly's Mom's very spicy (but good) Kimchi and a delicious mixed greens salad with mandarin oranges and dried cranberries & golden raisins and this wonderful, wonderful dressing.  The dressing makes a lot -- which is perfect because you're going to want to have it again and again.

Asian Salad Dressing 

Blend all the ingredients together until well incorporated; store in the refrigerator and shake before using.

3 cloves minced garlic
2 Tbsp minced ginger root
1 cup olive oil 
1/3 cup rice wine vinegar
1/2 cup soy sauce
3 Tbsp honey
1/4 cup water 

I found the Korean Rainbow Rice Cake, when trolling the internet for recipes.  It was intriguing so I decided to give it a try.  
  It was a lot of work, a labour of love, but still fun to make; and I learned a lot.  Like ..... next time use the called-for 8" springform pan and the layers will be better defined; and more importantly,  go with your gut when it comes to cooking time and pan size.  Although mine tasted good, it was chewy rather than fluffy.  The flavors in this cake are very subtle; the green tea Matcha layer was my favorite.
(A real plus?  You can eat "cake" for breakfast and not feel guilty about doing so!)

THIS cake was the real hit of the night:  Lighter Authentic New York Cheesecake!  (
It uses 1% cottage cheese, 1% plain Greek yogurt and a block of light cream cheese -- all blended in the food processor to ensure an even, smooth texture. It was delicious!  Lighter tasting for sure, but still maintaining that creamy just-rich-enough taste as a New York cheesecake.

We shared our meal with another host family, who have gotten to know Elly very well over the past 2 years, and one of Elly's Korean schoolmates.  Elly said the meal and the presents were perfect ....
And they had so much fun creating messages with their sparklers!

I'd encourage any of you adventurous eaters out there to try different foods.  From my experiences over the last 4 years, a lot of them are as easy as reading a recipe .................. 
but sooooo much more rewarding!

Bon Appétit!


Pondside said...

I'll try that salad dressing - I love to try new ones. You're a good sport to make the celebration so special.

I'm mostly known as 'MA' said...

It would be adventuresome to try out all those new foods but I have to say things like your cheese cake are more to my taste. Glad you are enjoying all the new foods. Looks like a grand birthday celebration!

Nezzy (Cow Patty Surprise) said...

You've got the be the best host~mom in the world!!!

The food looks totally intriguing and droolin' delicious!!!

God bless ya sweetie and have a blast with those beautiful girls of yours!

Marissa said...

The Korean Rainbow Rice Cake looks so good! I think I'll start with that salad dressing looks simple to make!
Happy Birthday to Elly!!!

Val said...

The food looks amazing!