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Archive for the ‘having braces – food/eating’ Category

This weekend is the Memorial Day weekend, and I feel eating BBQ is a must.  About three days ago, I have begun to wish that I get to eat BBQ this weekend.  I didn’t know if this could happen though, because my family isn’t so into eating BBQ for health reason, and cooking BBQ on national holidays isn’t a tradition in my family.  But I really wanted to eat BBQ, so I persuaded my family to cook and eat BBQ this weekend, not in a park, but at a restaurant.  (Well, it was different, but it was better than nothing.)

We see this advertisement for an all-you-can-eat Korean BBQ restaurant.  We actually have seen it several times on the newspapers, so we decided to give it a try today evening.  Before getting braces, I thought that once I get braces, I probably wouldn’t be able to eat all-you-can-eat at all (because I probably can’t eat many food items and it wouldn’t be worth the money).  But after getting braces, I realize that as long as I have a fork and a knife, I can pretty much eat just like before (although not within one week of braces adjustment).  So in just three months into the orthodontic treatment, this Korean BBQ restaurant is the second all-you-can-eat restaurant I eat at.

Even though not long time ago my teeth hurt like hell after the braces adjustment, now I am fine and I can eat normally.  (Looking at the date, it takes me a bit more than one week to get used to the customized wire and wearing rubber band.)  But I still wanted to be careful and nice to my teeth, so I purposely picked food items that I know I can eat easily.

For my first plate, I sampled some items from the hot food section.  They were all good, but nothing impressed me.  Of course, I didn’t come here for hot food.  I came here for the Korean BBQ.

While eating the hot food, we were cooking our meat on the grill.  After taking a bite of the meat, I thought this restaurant’s Korean BBQ was just okay.  I was feeling a bit disappointed, but at least I ate BBQ this Memorial Day weekend.

After we left this restaurant, we all agreed that we won’t come to this restaurant again.

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I like Japanese food and I love sushi.  Before getting braces, I used to have sushi often.  Since I put on braces two and a half months ago, I hadn’t had sushi.  I was not sure if my teeth’s condition right now allowed me to still have sushi (chewing cooked fish and raw fish is different), and I am a bit concerned about the safety of seafood from Japan (or any affected countries) due to the radiation leaking into the ocean caused by March 11’s earthquake and tsunami in Japan.  But, my craving for sushi had built up and I wanted to have sushi.

So, to satisfy my craving for sushi, I met up with a friend to have sushi after work tonight!

I know that now I can’t put the whole piece of sushi into my mouth and chew like before, so with the aid of a fork and a knife, I cut my sushi into smaller pieces to eat.  (I had never eaten sushi using a fork and a knife before, so tonight’s experience was quite special.)

The first thing we ordered was a special roll: spicy tuna on the inside topped with avocado and spicy sauce.  Everything was soft so it was not difficult to consume.

Next, we ordered another special roll: asparagus tempura topped with salmon.  The asparagus tempura was a little hard for my teeth, but I was still able to eat it.

Then we switched gear to eat sushi.  On the first plate, there came mackerel, salmon, and salmon eggs.  With the help of the fork and knife, eating sushi was easy for my teeth with braces.  I used to dip my raw fish sushi in soy sauce if it is not already salty.  Because I am afraid that soy sauce would stain the surface of my teeth that’s not in contact with the bracket, I significantly reduced the amount of soy sauce intake this time.  The sushi was still tasting delicious even if I didn’t use as much soy sauce as before.

The next sushi plate that came contained tuna and albacore.  The pieces were in decent size and they tasted great.

We then ordered a spicy tuna roll (I like spicy tuna roll).  Even though it had cucumber wrapped inside the roll, I felt the cucumber was not as hard as the asparagus tempura I ate earlier.  So this was good.

Lastly, we finished our sushi dinner with another albacore and salmon.

I felt so happy and satisfied after tonight’s dinner, because I finally tasted sushi again after two and a half months.  Now I know that eating sushi is doable with the help of a fork and a knife, I would be resuming my sushi eating frequency.  (Just typing this up makes me want to have sushi again!)

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My mom has been back from overseas for 10 days, so the number of times that I use the kitchen to cook has greatly reduced.  Since today is Saturday, I feel that I need to cook to regain the feeling of cooking.

I told my family members that I want to stay at home cooking my lunch.  After they headed out for lunch, I began preparing the ingredients.  I felt like eating smoked salmon, and I wanted to challenge making omelet again, so I prepared spinach, celery, red radish, eggs, imitation crab meat, and smoked salmon to make this meal.

As usual, after cutting my vegetables into small pieces, I boiled them in the cooking pan, without using salt.  When the vegetables were almost cooked thoroughly, I added in the imitation crab meat chunks to the cooking pan.

While cooking vegetables, I also cooked spinach omelet in another cooking pan.  I have tried to make omelet in the past for several times, but every time, I prepared too much ingredients for the omelet, so the meals always turn out to be scramble eggs.  This time, I tried to suppress the inclination to put a lot of ingredients in the cooking pan; rather, I only got a small amount of spinach from all the veggies I prepared for making this omelet.

Thinking about the strategy for making the omelet that my brother shared with me, this time, my attempt to make an omelet was successful!

After finished cooking both the vegetables and the omelet, I placed both onto the plate, and added in slices of smoked salmon, and my meal was done.

My lunch was delicious.  Even though I didn’t use any sauce to make the omelet, because the smoked salmon was already salty, the pairing turned out to be great.  Besides, because of the imitation crab meat chunks, my vegetable side dish tasted good  too without salt.  Looking at what’s inside my plate, I felt that this meal was a healthy one.

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I bought two chicken leg quarters from a Japanese supermarket because I sort of miss the home-baked chicken leg quarter I had in the past.  Originally, I wanted to also buy teriyaki sauce from the supermarket, but since there are a lot to choose from and I really didn’t know which one tastes the best, so I eventually decided not to buy the sauce.  Rather, I thought to marinate my chicken leg quarters with soy sauce (the base of almost all teriyaki sauce).

While I was marinating my chicken leg quarters, my dad told me that if you want to make it taste better, you can add a little bit of sugar or honey.  I suddenly remembered Sugar In The Raw Hawaiian cane sugar I bought before and thought that I could use it.  For some reason, I also remembered the green tea with black beans tea bag I have and decided to use that as well to give my chicken leg quarters some “tea” flavor.

So, mixing tea and sugar water with the soy sauce, I marinated my chicken leg quarters for 2-3 days.

By tonight, they were ready to be baked.  It took me approximately 30-45 minutes to bake the chicken leg quarters in the oven, and when they were baked thoroughly, the their color just looked great.

These two chicken leg quarters were from free ranch chicken, so the meat tasted better than regular chicken leg meat.  I was happy that my first-time baked chicken leg quarters turned out to look and taste great.  Even though I had to use a knife and a fork to cut the meat into small pieces and could only eat slowly, I was satisfied about the taste.  This DIY marinating sauce (i.e., soy sauce + tea + sugar) is something I will make again.

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I always ate the cereals dry and had never soaked my cereals in liquid before.  Today when I was making my usual cereal drink for breakfast, I saw my box of Chocolate Cheerios on the dining table.  (Probably placed on the dining table by my brother because he was cleaning the storage drawer yesterday.)  I looked at the image on the box and suddenly felt like eating it.  But I can’t and was told not to eat something that’s crunchy.  I didn’t know why I wanted to give it a try, but I thought that if I just soak my chocolate cereals in the cereal drink for few seconds, it should be a bit softer but not to the degree that it is too soft to consume.

So I poured a good amount of chocolate cereals into the hot cereal drink, stirred it quickly to add chocolate taste to the cereal drink, and consumed the slightly soaked chocolate cereals.  To my surprise, it didn’t taste bad.  The softness of my chocolate cereals was still within the acceptable range, so I happily ate everything and thought that there is one more thing I can eat for breakfast besides sponge cake.

Finally, after 21 days of eating at home, I was finally ready to eat out on the 22nd day!  I wanted to pick something easy to eat for my first eating out meal since getting braces.  My dad, brother, and I decided to go get Korean tofu soup for lunch.

Korean restaurant, in most cases, always give customers many small dishes of appetizers.  The first plate that came was the clear noodle, which is what I like.  I would like to eat the whole plate, but my teeth don’t allow me to chew on noodles yet, so I gave most of it to my dad, only keeping the short noodles for myself to eat.

After we finished with the clear noodles, the waitress came with more small appetizer dishes for us to share.  Out of all these, I could only eat sweet potatoes and the egg, but it was better than being able to eat nothing.

Soon after, my combination non-spicy tofu soup and purple rice in a stone bowl came.  The tofu soup still tasted as delicious as in the past, but maybe I am already used to eating small amount of salt in my home-cooked meals, I felt that this tofu soup was saltier than before.  Up until today, I hadn’t had regular rice yet, so I was a bit concerned if I could eat the purple rice.  After trying the rice, I felt happy that my teeth right now are strong enough for eating regular rice.

Since the tofu soup I ordered was a combination kind, it had seafood and beef.  I couldn’t eat the clams and shrimps, so I gave those to my dad.  However, because the beef pieces were small and the meat was tender, I was able to eat them.  This was my first time eating beef since getting braces.  I felt touched….

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I suddenly felt like eating grilled chicken from El Pollo Loco, and I told my dad and brother about this few days ago.  Because of this, we decided to have the grilled chicken from El Pollo Loco tonight.  When I came back home from work, my brother just brought back home the grilled chicken.

In these days, I have already built up a habit to eat vegetables in almost every meal, so I couldn’t just have grilled chicken.  I needed to prepare myself  a dish with vegetables, but I didn’t want to cook.  Since my avocados were ripe and I just got arugula from the farmer’s market yesterday, I thought that I could fix a quick salad dish to go with my grilled chicken.

This salad dish was easy and quick to make.  I just washed and cut a handful of arugula into smaller pieces, and then I scooped the avocado flesh out into the bowl.  To give some color to my salad, I added small chunks of mango and strawberries, and then I mixed everything well together.  This avocado and fruit salad was done.

The grilled chicken was still as tasty as I remembered.  Like last time, I used knife and fork to get the meat off the bones because it is impossible for me to bite into the chicken meat directly now.  This salad tasted good, but I thought that it would taste even better without arugula….  I think I will cook arugula next time, rather than making salad out of it.

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My experience of the past few times for cooking fish was successful, so I wanted to cook fish again tonight.  This time, I wanted to cook halibut fillet.  I bought a package of halibut fillets from a Chinese supermarket, which were frozen and packaged individually.  On its cover image, they look fresh and nice, so I thought the fish would taste good.

Before I headed out for work, I took my fish out of the freezer to thaw it, so when I came back, they should be ready to cook, but because this, I wouldn’t be able to marinate it beforehand.  I thought that as long as I added seasoning while cooking my fish, it should be okay.

After I came back home from work, my halibut fillet was completely thawed.  Besides the fish, I also prepared zucchini, tindora, cauliflower, celery, and eggs for cooking this meal.

Because vegetables would take a while to cook before becoming tender, I boiled my vegetables first.  And then I grilled my fish in another cooking pan.  When grilling, I sprinkled seasoning and salt on the fish.  I didn’t know how it would taste like, but hopefully it would taste good.

As for my vegetables, I was tired of using just salt to cook them, so tonight, I wanted to use black pepper sauce instead to give them some flavor.  (My brother used this black pepper sauce last time to cook chicken, and it tasted good, so I thought it should also make my veggie dish taste good.)  When my vegetables were almost done, I added in the beaten eggs to turn it into a veggie scramble eggs dish and then blended in the black pepper sauce.  Shortly, I finished cooking and was read to eat.

My meal had a good visual presentation, and the fish and veggie scramble eggs were not difficult for my teeth, but I was disappointed with the taste.  This halibut fillet (previous frozen and thawed naturally) was unpalatable.  I have never tasted a fish fillet this unsavory.  The fish meat tasted really “dead and dull”.  I will never buy any frozen fish fillet from this Chinese supermarket again.  I only consumed one piece of the halibut fillet in this meal (yeah, I still ate it…), and I threw the rest of the cooked halibut fillets in the trash can.  (I probably would throw the remaining package in the trash can as well.)  As for the veggie scramble eggs in black pepper sauce… it tasted bad too.  While I was eating, my brother came to the kitchen, and I complained to him about the taste.  He believed that the problem was on the usage of this black pepper sauce.  In his opinion, this black pepper sauce has a strong taste, and it should be used on meat to overcome the meat’s original taste instead of on vegetables.  Okay… I accepted his statement.  At least the black pepper chicken he made last time was really good.

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