Easy amaranth greens, beef and noodles recipe 牛肉莧菜米粉湯

September 1st, 2020 § 0 comments § permalink

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Amaranth greens in garden

We always grow amaranth greens every year. Amaranth greens are super healthy vegetables high in vitamin A, C, and K. Home-grown amaranth leaves taste way better than the store-bought ones. The roots of this vegetable are edible as well but do take longer to scrub and remove all the the dirt.

My favorite way to cook amaranth greens is with beef and noodles. Amaranth in soup has a mild sweet flavor and gives off a beautiful pink purple color that is delightful to the eye. You can use the liquid as a natural hair care product and use it as a natural food dye.

Amaranth greens are easy to grows. We have them growing all year round. Consider growing some. It’s super satisfying to pick and eat from an your own organic garden.

Beef and noodles soup (beef ho fun)

Flat rice noodles, like ho fun, is my favorite noodles to go with this beef and noodles recipe. This recipe is very easy and loose. You can adjust to your own taste and use the ingredients you have. Like many Asian moms, my mom never had specific measurements for recipes, it’s a very flexible way to cook.

I’ll pass this flexible cooking style to you so you can give it a try. It’s a good way to adapt to personal health conditions and flavor preferences. The meat and noodles can be replaced with your favorite meat and noodles. My preference and ideal combination for this amaranth greens recipe are mainly beef and flat rice noodle sticks. Sometimes I like to add an egg and some chili oil to spice things up. Cooking freestyle can accommodate your mood at the time of cooking. I’ll show you the basics and you can add to it what you like. Here’s a short video I made to help you get started.

Ingredients: 2 servings

Soup

Beef flank steak marinade

  • Salt (to taste)
  • Black pepper (to taste)
  • Garlic powder (to taste)
  • 1 tsp Soy sauce
  • 1 tsp Cornstarch

Serve with

Diy t-shirt suspender skirt (no sew)

August 1st, 2020 § 0 comments § permalink

What to do with an huge old t shirt?

If you don’t know what to do with an old t shirt here’s a cute way to cut shirts. I had lots of fun figuring out how I could make use of this huge ugly t shirt I got from working at JC Penny’s during the holidays. Upcycle old t shirts are the best way to repurpose old t shirts. I created this simple t shirt tutorial cutting and braiding the huge t shirt into a cute suspender skirt that is great for the summer season. There’s no sewing involved. Simply cut, braid and tie some knots.Diy t-shirt suspender skirt (no sew)

  1. Pick a t-shirt that is large enough to cover the length you want your suspender skirt to be. Carefully plan and draw where you will make your cuts to the t shirt. Check your measurement twice and then again, you only have one chance to maximize the fabric on the t skirt so take your time. If you have tons of t shirts sitting around then you can afford a mistake or two to get it right. I had only one huge t shirt so I made everything is exactly the way I want before I made my cuts.

Diy t-shirt suspender skirt (no sew) part1

2. Cut the two side stips in the back at the waist line so the front of the two strips are still attached to the front waistline of the skirt. Cut the two side strips into 3 thin strips. These will be the front suspenders. Cut the middle wide flap at the front waistline leaving the back flap still attached to the back waistline. this will be the back suspender. Fold the two front strips down. Fold the back middle wide flap down. Use your thumb as a guide to cut notches all around the t-shirt. The notches cut in about 1/4″. When you open it up, it should be about 1/2″.

Diy t-shirt suspender skirt (no sew) part2

3. Braid the whole circumference of the t-shirt using the chart from daretodiy.com. Tie the last notch.

Diy t-shirt suspender skirt (no sew) part3

4. When you finish braiding all the way around the t shirt, the two (3 thin stips) and the back middle flap will be downwards under the braid. Pull the braids under and up towards the top. Fold the back middle flap up. Cut the middle back flap into 6 thin strips that’s still attached to the waist line. Pull the 6 thin strips under the waistline braids.

Diy t-shirt suspender skirt (no sew) part4

5. The two (3 thin strips) in the front have a sewing connection which was at the shoulder, you can secure it by sewing it with extra thread. If it it tight then there’s no need to do this step. Sometimes cutting the shirt will loosen the connection at the shoulder.

Diy t-shirt suspender skirt (no sew) part5

6. Braid the two (3 thi strips in the front). Weave the back flap that you’ve cut into 6 thin strips.

Diy t-shirt suspender skirt (no sew) part6

7. Connect the two front suspender braid to the back flap weave to create a flower. The connection looks like a “Y”. Cut off any odd pieces when you have secured the connection.

Diy t-shirt suspender skirt (no sew) part7

Cut t shirts are super fun experiments

Cut t shirt experiments are super fun especially if you have lot of old shirts lying around. Sometimes it takes some practice to get it right. Doing upcycle and repurpose projects not only saves your clothes from going to dumping grounds and polluting our planet but is a great way to express creativity. I’d be so happy to see what you made. Share what you made with your old t shirt.

Massage body aches and pains away: Do you owe a beating?

July 31st, 2020 § 0 comments § permalink

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Usually in Asian dramas mothers would often say this to their kids, “你欠打!” (You owe a beating!!!) and trust me it’s not a question. This threat often comes when kids do something obnoxiously wrong or bad. Ok, I admit, it’s doesn’t only happen in dramas :p

Why do you need to beat yourself up?

In Chinese medicine there’s a saying, “痛则不通, 通则不痛”. It means where there’s pain there’s blockage, where there’s no pain there’s no blockage. A sedentary lifestyle is the main cause of stagnant blood circulation in the body. Beating yourself, even though it sounds a bit psychotic, is a very simple way to stir up blood circulation to relieve muscle aches and pains.

If you have lots of body aches all over, look into your lifestyle, what bad behavior have you committed to deserve a beating? Or in this case it’s more like muscle pain management. I admit you are not alone. I sit in front of the computer all day and night with no exercise. I don’t sleep until late hours, I don’t drink enough water. Years of built up stagnancy led up to feeling sluggish and sick. Overworked and no rest for my body and organs to heal. I have treated myself badly. Behavior correction time!!!

How to make a (massage) beating stick

Roll 4-5 sheets of newspaper, thick magazine spreads or pages from a huge calendar into a roll about 1″ thick. I am 4’10”, 103lbs, if you are bigger than me and can’t feel the pounding much add a few more sheets of paper to make it thicker. If the wand causes a painful uncomfortable feeling than it’s too thick.  The key thing is to make sure you leave the core about half empty so the roll is not solid. If it’s solid you may really get bruised instead of a massage. Last, wrap clear tape all around the tube to prevent it from breaking and falling apart. If it rips after use just wrap more tape around to fix it.

paper massage wand

You can also use a massage knock hammer if you prefer something more permanent. I have this one I bought from a Japanese store in Japantown.

How to use a beating stick to massage body aches

Although beating yourself is one simple way to stir up your blood circulation you don’t want to literally beat yourself to death. The beating process is a very gentle. You feel sore pain but not pain that is hurting. You feel relief after your sore pain goes away. You feel better and better as you beat yourself.

Beat where you feel sore. When your body is normal you will only feel soft hits like a massage but when you are sore you will feel  a slight to intense pain, but it feels good after you hit it. Sounds like self abuse, but trust me, the more you hit that spot the less pain you will feel. What you are doing is inducing circulation at the spot. As more blood flows to the spot and circulation increases the pains goes away. Remember the Chinese medical saying in Chinese, “痛则不通, 通则不痛” (If there’s is pain there is blockage, if there’s no blockage there’s no pain.) When you gently beat the blockage it breaks apart and allow your circulation to flow and the pain will dissipate. Beating yourself wherever there’s pain is a massage that you can do yourself anytime.

There’s a Chinese saying, “打者爱也” (Beat those you love) so you can do this with a partner. I’m not promoting physical abuse, don’t take it so literal in its meaning. In this case we want to beat the crap(toxins) away. This beating is to show yourself or loved ones some love, take turns to beat each other up gently. You’ll both feel a lot better after the pains beaten out of you. 

DIY infinity scarf, Easy sewing project (free pattern)

July 30th, 2020 § 0 comments § permalink

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Free Infinity Scarf Pattern

I made a really simple infinity scarf from a faux fur fabric and wanted to share it with you. This infinity scarf is a very easy things to sew. A super easy sewing project for someone with basic sewing skills. There’s no need to knit or crochet a scarf. This scarf is soft, chunky and warm. If you have all the materials, you’ll have this done as quickly as 1/2 – 1 hour and ready for some chilly weather. You can experiment with this easy sewing project using different textured cloth such as knitted fabric to get the desired results you want.

diy faux fur infinity scarf

Materials

Faux fur 64″ wide fabric – 1/4 yard (9″)
Matching color thread

Directions

  1. Cut a rectangle 64″(w) x 9″(h). No need to cut if you bought the fabric at this size.
  2. Fold it in half (w) with fur side facing each other. Sew the ends together (1/4″-1/2″ seem)
  3. Fold (h) in half, with fur side facing each other. Sew edge together (1/4″-1/2″ seem) leaving 4″ gap not sewn together. Now you have a loop.
  4. From the 4″ gap invert the loop so the fur side is showing.
  5. Push the seams of the 4″ gap inside and sew the gap together.

My finished scarf’s dimension is about 62″,  31″(w) x 3.75″(h) when laid flat. I can loop the scarf around my neck twice, like the holes of an “8” stacked on top of each other.

Tips

Try to find the widest fabric and buy about 1/4 yard of fabric. This way you can save some money and makes the project a lot simpler. You won’t need to do any cutting. You can get straight to sewing.

If you want to make yours longer buy more material and sew it together to make a longer version.

To determine the right fit for you, you can hang a string around your shoulder, loop the string around once and use that as a guide to the width of your fabric width. Doing this can help you visualize how low your infinite scarf will fall. The longer the loop is the lower your scarf will fall. Enjoy and have fun.

Super Easy Crockpot Chicken Porridge/Congee (慢炖锅鸡肉粥)

March 26th, 2020 § 0 comments § permalink

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Healthy Chicken Crockpot Recipes

Chicken soup is one of the healthiest soups. When I was sick my mom would make plain congee with just rice and water for me to detox my body. When I was weak she’d make chicken soup for me to boost my immune system. Today I will show you how to make the fastest and most lazy way to make a delicious combination of both. This is one of the easiest chicken recipes that will take less than 10 mins to prepare.

I love congee or porridge. One of my all-time favorites is chicken rice congee. This is one of the easiest chicken recipes, slow cooker recipes that you can cook in a crockpot. Crockpot chicken recipes are my favorite because they are so easy to make. I am using a 5 quart crockpot. It takes no time to prepare and no maintenance in front of a stove. All you need is chicken, rice, dried scallops ( optional), and water. Watch the video below for more details. Enjoy this crockpot chicken porridge soup on a cold day or any lazy day. You don’t have to slave all day to get a nutritious meal. What’s great about this slow cooker chicken recipe is you also get a nutritious bone soup all mixed in the batch. I hope you’ll give it a try. Enjoy.

How to Make Chicken Soup (Congee)

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups, Rice (1 cup to 7 cups of water)
  • 14 cups Water
  • 2 Dried Scallops
  • whole chicken, chicken carcass, chicken thighs, or chicken breast ( Use whichever you have)

What to Serve With Soup

  • Diced scallion or parsley
  • Sliced ginger slivers
  • white pepper
  • Salt to taste
  • Fried donut (optional)

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