Getting Creative in the Kitchen

Buckle up friends, this post is gonna be a recipe dump!

Yesterday morning as I was lying in bed, slowly waking up I asked Manny the same question I ask every day when it’s my turn to cook, “Any requests for dinner?” His response, “Something vaguely Asian.” Due to a recent conversation where he admitted to being vaguely off rice for the time being that limited me a bit. So what to make? Well, this kid has had egg rolls on the brain. So, in need of a grocery run anyway I hopped in my car and went to the store to buy the necessary items to make us a delicious dinner.

In the end I made cream cheese wontons, egg rolls, and stir fried yakisoba noodles with vegetables. Other than the wrappers for the wontons and egg rolls, I made all of it from scratch too. (Which I’m actually quite proud of.) There isn’t much more to be said about it, so let’s jump straight in with the recipes! Here we go!

Easy Cream Cheese Wontons
1 packet pre-made wonton wraps
2 8 oz package cream cheese or neufchatel cheese
2 tbsp chopped garlic
*Full recipe makes about 4 dozen wontons. I made half.

Place cream cheese in a microwave safe bowl. Microwave on high for 30 seconds or until soft enough to stir with a spoon. Add chopped garlic. On clean dry surface separate wonton wrappers. Place a spoonful of cream cheese mixture on the center of each wrap. Dip fingers in water and place small amount of water on each corner of the wonton wrapper. Gently pull the corners up and press together. Place on an ungreased no-stick cookie sheet. Bake at 300 degrees for 8-10 minutes. Dip in sweet and sour sauce and enjoy!

Simplest Sweet and Sour Sauce
1/3 C brown sugar
2 tbsp ketchup
1/3 C and 2 tbsp water divided
1/4 C lime juice
1/2 tsp salt
3 tbsp rice vinegar
1 tbsp soy sauce
2 tsp corn starch

In a small sauce pan combine all ingredients except for the 2 tsp corn starch and 2 tbsp water. Heat on medium high until boiling. In a separate bowl combine 2 tsp corn starch and 2 tbsp water. Make sure the water is very cold. Whisk smooth. Slowly pour into boiling mixture in the the saucepan, being sure to stir thoroughly the entire time. Remove from heat. Pour into a jar for saving. Recipe makes roughly 8 oz of sauce. Serve warm or cold.

Vegetable Egg Rolls
1 package egg roll wrappers
1/2 package matchstick carrots
1/4 head finely shredded cabbage
1/2 large onion finely chopped
1 cup finely chopped broccoli stems
1 tsp garlic
1/2 tsp finely chopped ginger
vegetable oil as needed

In a large oiled skilled combine ingredients over medium high heat. Cook, stirring frequently until the vegetables are tender. Remove from heat and cool. On a clean dry surface lay out egg roll wrappers. Place 1/2 C vegetable mixture in center of each. Pull the two side corners in and stick them together using a small amount of water. Next pull up the corner closest to you and fold it over the first two corners and the vegetable mixture. Gently, so as not to rip the wrapper, roll the egg roll until there are not more corners left. Fix last corner down using a small amount of water. Place on ungreased non-stick cookie sheet and cook until golden brown at 350 degrees. Takes about 20 minutes.

Spicy Peanut Sauce
1 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp peanut butter
1 tbsp brown sugar
1 tsp chopped garlic
1 tbsp sriracha
1 tbsp lime juice
1 tbsp rice vinegar
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper

Whisk all ingredients together in a bowl. Store extra in a jelly jar. Makes about 4 oz. Serve cold.

Noodle Stir Fry with Peanut Sesame Sauce
1 package yakisoba noodles
1 head broccoli chopped
1/2 head cabbage chopped
1/2 package matchstick carrots
1 1/2 large onions chunked
1 package tempeh chunked
2 tbsp butter
vegetable oil as needed
1/2 cup frozen peas

In large skillet combine vegetables and oil. Cook over medium heat until vegetables are tender. In small non-stick pan combine butter and tempeh. Fry on high heat until golden brown stirring often. Add to vegetable mixture. Microwave packet of noodles for 1 minute on high. Add to vegetable mix. Mix sauce recipe below, add to skillet. Serve and enjoy!

2 tbsp soy sauce
4 tbsp peanut butter
2 tbsp brown sugar
2 tsp chopped garlic
3 tbsp sriracha
4 tbsp lime juice
4 tbsp rice vinegar
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
2 tbsp roasted sesame seeds

Whisk together all ingredients in a bowl. Pour over stir fry. Serve and enjoy!

And that’s it. I know it looks like a lot. This meal is a bit putzy if I’m being honest. All together it took me about 2 hours to create but it was a delicious treat. Definitely not something I’ll be tossing together on a regular basis or when I’m strapped for time but delicious non-the-less. I hope you enjoy and as always, take care and God bless.

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