Archive | December, 2010

Recipe: Easy Bruschetta

28 Dec

This recipe is so easy to throw together. I took me about 10 minutes from start to finish.

Easy Bruschetta:
5 Roma tomatoes, chopped
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1/4 cup of basil, chopped
1/4 cup shredded parmesan cheese
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
S&P to taste
Combine the first 4 ingredients and mix.  Then mix with the rest of ingredients. Refrigerate for 30 minutes before serving.  To make it even better, you can reduce a cup of balsamic vinegar and drizzle it over the top when you’re serving.  Serve it with toasted French bread.  It makes for a easy appetizer to throw together.

Recipe: Balsamic Cream Chicken Pasta

27 Dec

I had dinner at Mona Lisa’s in Huntington Beach a couple weeks ago and absolutely loved their Rigatoni Con Petit De Pollo.  It was a rigatoni pasta with a light balsamic cream sauce.  The sauce had the perfect tang to it that I fell in love with.  The boyfriend also raved about the dish so I knew it was something I wanted to recreate.  I searched high and low for a good recipe and came across one from  I used it as a guide and adjusted it to my liking.  The recipe is just for the sauce, but I made it to put over pasta and chicken.  I’m sure it would be good over a variety of things.

Balsamic Cream Sauce:

2 tbsp oil
2 tbsp butter
1/2 onion, minced or chopped
3 tbsp balsamic vinegar
2 tbsp chicken bouillon granules
1 1/2 cup of heavy cream
1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese

1. Heat oil and butter in a saucepan.  Add onions and saute on low/medium heat for 10-15 minutes. You want to caramelize the onions, not saute them. Make sure you’re stirring it constantly so you don’t burn them
2. Add the balsamic vinegar and let simmer for about 1-2 minutes.  You’ll see it slightly thicken up.
3 Add heavy cream and chicken granules.  Bring to a simmer for about 5 minutes until you see it thickening.
4. Add in the parmesan cheese and stir around until it all melts.  Freshly grated parmesan will give you the best results.  The canned and pre-shredded stuff will make your sauce lumpy.
5. Add salt/pepper to your liking

All done! This sauce was an easy 20 minutes.  The only long part is waiting for the onions to caramelize.  This was the perfect serving for 4 people.

Here is my go-to easy chicken marinade:

1 big piece of chicken breast, sliced or however you plan to serve it
1/2 cup of Italian salad dressing
2 cloves of garlic-minced
a dash of Italian herbs

Combine it all and let marinate for 30 minutes. Bake at 350 degrees for 10-12 minutes depending how big your pieces of chicken are.

I served this with some roasted broccoli, I prepared it the same way from my Beer Can Chicken post.

It was a very delicious dinner and boyfriend approved.  This is definitely going on my monthly rotation of meals

NYE Contest

23 Dec

The people of OC Fairgrounds graciously gave me two general admission ($70 value) tickets to giveaway for the NYE Block Party.  I thought it’d be fun to do a little contest here on my blog.

Here are some tidbits on the event:
* 4 stages featuring tribute bands from 60s, 70s, 80s, and 90s. Personally the Journey tribute band is my favorite.
* 2 DJs spinning today’s hottest music
* Demolition Taxi Cab Derby
* Comedy Hypnotist
* Carnival Rides
* 50 gourmet food trucks (try Burnt Truck, it’s my favorite!)
Tickets range from $35-$75.  They even offer VIP admission for those of you that want to do New Years in style. 
So for the contest, you have a couple ways to win these tickets:
1. Leave me a comment and tell me what one perk of having VIP tickets is.
2. RT this on Twitter “I want to win the @OCFair NYE Block Party tickets from @CindyWang10”
3. @ reply me on Twitter and tell me one thing you did nice for someone for the holidays. My twitter handle is @CindyWang10
*If you’re leaving a comment on my blog, please don’t forget to leave your email address so I can get ahold of you for the tickets.
I will be choosing the winner on Christmas morning. Winning the tickets will be like an extra present under the tree 🙂

Union Rescue Mission

21 Dec

I don’t recall Orange County raining this much since El Nino 10 years ago.  The rain put a damper on my Big Bear cabin trip this past weekend and has made Christmas shopping more dreadful than it already is.  I love the cold, but with the heavy rain, it has made the freeways a war zone.  Accidents every few miles, flooding, and cars driving 30 mph. 

Between all this complaining, I’m thankful I have a car to get me places, a jacket to keep me dry, and a warm bed to sleep in at night.  There are hundreds, even thousands, of people out there that don’t have any of the mentioned.  Last night at 10pm, Cole posted this on Twitter and I quickly jumped on it. 
Every year around the holidays, I always want to volunteer or donate.  It’s tough for me to donate money since I don’t make much.  So assisting Cole was the next best thing.  Everyone has extra clothes, shoes, blankets, etc that they don’t want or need.  She had plans to take all the clothes to the Union Rescue Mission at noon today.  I posted on my Facebook late last night to see if anyone could donate clothes.  To my surprise I got a great response. By 10am, I had two people leave bags of clothes on my doorstep and arranged to pick up from 5 other people.  It amazes me how many people, some I don’t even talk to, got in contact with me to donate to a good cause. 
I battled the rain, slow drivers, got locked inside a friends gate (ended up having to jumping over) and ended up with about 20 huge bags of clothes.  I didn’t expect to collect as much as I did so when I saw it slowly piling up in my car, I got a bit nervous.  I still had a couple more stops and wasn’t sure whether it would all fit in my car.  In the end, I made it work and fit everything in my car to drop it off at Cole’s.  
Thank you to the people that quickly acted on this and got these bags together.  It’s such a good feeling at the end of the day knowing that you can help out the less fortunate.  I’m lucky to have a roof over my head and dry clothes to change into every day.  Some just aren’t so that’s where you step in and help in every which way.  
For those of you that still want to donate, Cole is holding another pick-up tomorrow morning at Brea Mall at the Macy’s parking lot at 10am.  Let me know if you would like more information and I can link you over to her. 

NYE Block Party

8 Dec

Year after year, I try so hard to find something fun to do on New Years Eve and year after year, I fail to do so.  I always have such high expectations for NYE and am always let down because what I end up doing isn’t as much fun as I hoped it to be.  Being in my early 20’s, I’ve always wanted to party hard and get completely trashed on NYE because that’s what people do right? Not this year.  This year I plan on kicking back and enjoying myself surrounded with my boyfriend and some good friends.  Thus, when I found out about the OC Fair NYE Block Party, I figured it to be fun and relaxing.  What really caught my eye was the 50 food trucks that are going to be there.  All those trucks in one place?  Sign me up!

First off, OC Fair is having a preview party next Thursday, December 16th.  It’s free to get in and it’ll be a good taste of what the NYE event will be.

I’ll be there stuffing my face at my favorite trucks.  Come say ‘hi’ if you see me!

Food Trucking

7 Dec

Food trucks have been all the rage around OC and LA lately.  It all started with the infamous Kogi BBQ and their outrageous 2 hour lines.  Now there are well over 50 trucks roaming around So Cal with all different types of menus.  From fusion tacos to bakery sweets, there is always something from everyone.   Here are a couple of my favorites:

The Burnt Truck is my all time favorite.  They serve different types of sliders, with a menu that changes weekly.  I like a truck that can keep things fresh and not constantly serve the same thing.  They serve about 5-6 different sliders each week and sometimes keeping a couple of their best sellers on the menu.  They are regulars at Food Truck Fare Thursdays and OC DinDinAGoGo on Wednesdays at Irvine Lanes.

The Korean BBQ slider and Cheeseburger slider
My favorites are the Fried Chicken, Cheeseburger, PBJ, and Vietnamese Pork.  They also serve tater tots and fries.  
The Bakery Truck is a truck that my boyfriend loves.  Their cream puffs and dessert shots are to die for.  I’m not a huge fan of sweets, but their mini banana nutella cream puff has a special place in my stomach. 
A couple other trucks that I love, that I don’t have pictures for are:
The Lime Truck for their Carnitas Fries. 10 hour pulled pork, guacamole, slaw, crema, and cotija.  The chipotle-honey slaw that tops it off is what makes the fries that much better.  Their menu is a bit pricier, but the quality of the food can’t be beat.  You would never guess their food came off a truck.
Dos Chinos is a Latin Asian Cuisine truck serving tacos and burritos.  What sets them apart from Kogi’s is that each taco is different from the last.  Their Bolsa BBQ Pork is hands down their best taco.  The only downside is that their service is slow and their tacos are sometimes inconsistent. 
Tropical Shaved Ice, the name says it all.  I’ve only ever had their fusion shaved ice and there’s no reason to try anything else.  Shaved ice with your choice of bananas, lychee, or strawberries (when they’re in season) all drenched in sweetened condensed milk.  
Taco Dawg is known for their tacos and hot dawgs with a fun twist.  I really can’t pick a favorite because all of their tacos and dawgs are pretty good.  A must try is their Apple taco dessert, you won’t regret it! Don’t forget to grab one of their punch cards and say “waddup dawg” to the guys on the truck.
All of these trucks can be tracked down via Twitter and Facebook.  The best way to track their updates is from Twitter and some trucks post their weekly menu up on Facebook.  Take the time to attend one of the meet ups so you can choose from different trucks all in one area.