Category Archives: chinese food inspired

Amazin’ Asian Ahi Tuna Burgers

I’ve got to start this post off with a little ‘woo-is’ me/feel sorry for me story! Let me first state that the first line of this recipe says “You MUST have fresh ahi for these burgers. DON’T cut corners and attempt to make these with the frozen stuff.” I might have taken this a little too literally! Being new to Southern California, I still don’t know where to get certain items, or where any specialty stores are. Sometimes I don’t even know what to search for in my GPS to find said items/stores. This was no exception! I searched google for fresh fish markets near me. First place that came up was less than a mile away and called something like “Fish Market”. SCORE! Or so I thought, it was non-existent! This used to happen to me all the time with my old GPS, but the new one has never been wrong! This place was just not there! After 2 hours of driving around, following directions and 4 stores later I came up with absolutely SQUAT!  Seriously, I was so annoyed and ready to give up! This is not how I wanted to spend my morning! I finally just said to h.e.double.hockey.sticks with it and was gonna buy the frozen stuff. I just didn’t care anymore! So I went to Ralph’s. I’m looking at the frozen fish right next to the fish/meat counter and saw frozen ahi. A little spendy but why the heck not? Just for shits and giggles I look at the fish counter. What did I find you ask? Oh, fresh ahi tuna! (Well it was from Indonesia but at least it wasn’t currently frozen) Son of a B! I finally calmed down, grabbed what I needed and headed out of dodge to my apartment (1/2 mile away btw. ha) What happens next? Some jack-ass son of a bitch mo-fo rams the back of my car with his! You have got to be kidding me! Luckily nothing and no one was hurt, and we went on our merry ways. This got my blood pumping though and I was aggravated beyond believe. Now that you feel sorry for me and feel the need to cheer me up with gifts, let me digress into the actual recipe:

THE RECIPE:

Amazin’ Asian Ahi Tuna Burgers

PER SERVING (1 burger) 246 calories, 2.5g fat, 734mg sodium, 26.5g carbs, 3g fiber, 3.5g sugar, 33g protein

(Side note: Who else is excited about the new Weight Watchers? I am I am! This recipe used to be 5 points now its 6, seems like a bad thing but really, it’s not! It’s such a good thing it’s ridiculous!)

INGREDIENTS:

1/3 cup fat-free mayonnaise (hate this stuff but decided to buy it and try it anyways, I’m such a good sport)

2 tsps. wasabi, or less for a milder taste (hell with that, give me spicy spicy!)

1 pound fresh raw ahi/yellowfin tuna, finely chopped

1 extra-large egg white or 3 tbls. liquid egg whites (I cut this entire recipe in half because it makes 4 and it’s just me and the boyfriend. For this item though I should have used 1 1/2 tbls. of egg whites, I used about 1/2 tbls. If you remember the Tremendous Top Shelf Turkey Burger, you’ll  know why I did that!)

3 scallions, chopped

1 1/2 tbls. reduced-sodium/lite soy sauce

2 tsp. ground ginger (ginger really isn’t my favorite spice. It’s just so over-powering, I used a few dashes, didn’t want to go overboard! I love fresh ginger btw, just not so much the dried/ground variety!)

1 tsp. Dijon mustard

Dash black pepper

4 small light hamburger buns, about 80 calories or less each.  (I couldn’t find these little buggers, so I went with some sandwich thins. Good enough at 100 calories each, at this point in my grocery shopping trip I just didn’t give a hoot!)

1 small cucumber, thinly sliced

DIRECTIONS:

In a small bowl, combine mayo and wasabi. Mix well and set aside.

In a medium bowl combine tuna, egg white, scallions, soy sauce, ginger, mustard and pepper. Mix well. Using your hands, shape mixture into 4 patties, each approximately 4 inches wide. (Seriously, I can’t measure that way! I use the “hope they are all even method” and cross my fingers!)

 

The tuna before I took out my frustrations on it with my favorite knife! (No the two pieces weren't really that different in color, I think the flash hit one more than the other one! Couldn't even correct that in Photoshop.)

Ah, I feel so much calmer now! Chopped up the tuna into small "ground" up pieces.

 

Spray a large skillet with nonstick spray and bring to a medium-high heat. Place patties n the pan and cook until golden on the outside and medium-rare on the inside, about 2 minutes per side. Be sure to flip them gently! (Not a problem for me, I didn’t overload them with egg “binders” LOL!)

 

Looks like it could be a turkey burger huh? Nice!

Place each patty on the bottom half of a bun. Top each evenly with mayo-wasabi mixture. Finish each one with cucumber slices and top bun half!

 

An open-faced view!!

Would you like fries with that? (Oh, I so did!) Served them with some roasted sweet potato wedges (aka fries!)

 

Makes 4 servings.

THE REVIEW:

My first bite reaction: Sushi, on a bun! Nice!

Mike’s first bite reaction: (I wasn’t paying attention when I finally noticed he had taken a few bites and then moved over to the “fries”. I asked what he thought) “I like the sweet potato fries,” then I grilled him about the burger. He didn’t like it at all! Had too much wasabi, too many cucumbers and reminded him of sushi! I’m such a bad girlfriend! I forgot that he doesn’t really like sushi! MY BAD! He’s more of a california roll type of sushi person (crab and avocado) where I’m more of a sashimi person (raw slabs of fish). I’m such a ditz, felt bad and gave him my fries. Ugh lol!

(Now I want some Sweet Potato fries!)

Taste: If you love sushi, you will love this recipe! If you only sorta kind of like sushi you might want to make sure someone who loves sushi is around to eat it incase you don’t like it (and so it doesn’t go to waste) if you don’t like sushi at all (or only prefer the american variety of sushi aka california rolls) do not even attempt to look at this! 🙂 It has all the right components, fish, wasabi, soy sauce, ginger. I thought it was great! I’d make it again (if it wasn’t such a pain to find the right fish) and gobble up the leftovers too!

Texture: By not adding very much egg whites it was perfect. Held together well and had a nice bite to it! If adding the right amount of egg whites be prepared for a soggy/sloppy mess! Or at least that’s what I think! I don’t understand adding eggs to burgers.

Creativity: Absolutely bloody brilliant! When I looked at the ingredients I really didn’t put two and two together. It sounded like it was going to be a simple tuna burger with wasabi. It wasn’t until I was putting it all together did I think “Duh, Sushi!” I was impressed!

Satisfaction: I wish I would have eaten my sweet potato fries. I was still a little hungry afterwards. Instead I drank a big glass of water and pouted a little. But I guess I didn’t have to give him my fries! Regardless, it was worth the points and calories for sure!

How do you like your sushi?

Where in Southern California can I find a fresh fish market?

Who else is thrilled about the new Weight Watchers?

(I know too many questions!)

Quick tidbit: As stated in my last post I think I’m gonna have to hold off doing all these recipes so quickly. Some of the Weight Watcher points are just a bit high! Plus having to buy more fruits and veggies is getting more and more expensive! I will try to do at least 2-3 a week, but no longer 7 days a week. (Sorry) The reason I wanted to even start doing this blog/cookbook was to try new foods and eat new things! I tend to get myself stuck in ruts and eat the same thing everyday (In result, not lose weight) and so far, that’s what I’ve accomplished! However, my pocket-book has gotten a bit too small trying to keep up at this pace! Until next time!

 

 

 

 

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Filed under burgers, chinese food inspired, dinner, tuna, vegetarian

Chop-Chop Beef Sir-Fry

I don’t eat a lot of Chinese food, it’s really just not my “thing”! When I do occasionally get a hankering for it, it’s always for some beef ‘n broccoli! More specifically the broccoli! I’m guessing that the take-out box full of beefy broccoli goodness is loaded with more fat and calories than need be, even though it’s so simple! Here’s a great swap for only 6 weight watchers points!

THE RECIPE:

Chop-Chop Beef Stir-Fry

PER SERVING: (entire recipe) 293 calories, 6.5g fat, 759mg sodium, 26g carbs, 7.5g fiber, 7g sugar, 35g protein

INGREDIENTS:

1/2 cup fat-free beef broth

1/2 tbls. reduced-sodium/lite soy sauce

1/2 tbls. cornstarch

4 ounces raw lean beefsteak filet, sliced (when it comes to beef, I am not an expert! I asked the guy at the butcher counter for the leanest cut of beef they had, and went with that. Beef loin top sirloin is what he gave me! Hope it was lean enough!)

1/2 tbls. chopped garlic

1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper

2 cups broccoli florets (yay! broccoli!)

1 cup sugar snap peas

1 cup sliced mushrooms

2 tbls. chopped scallions

Optional: salt

DIRECTIONS:

Combine beef broth, soy sauce, and cornstarch in a bowl, and mix until cornstarch dissolves. Add beef, garlic, and crushed red pepper. Toss to coat and let marinate in the fridge for 10 minutes.

This picture was taken after about 10 minutes of marination. The beef changed color just a little, weird!

The "chop-chop" part of this recipe! A lot of chopping involved here!

Bring a skillet sprayed with nonstick spray to medium-high heat. Add broccoli, sugar snap peas, mushrooms, scallions and 1/4 cup of the marinade from the beef. Cook for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until broccoli softens.

Veggies starting to cook, almost ready for the beef.

Add beef and remaining marinade, and cook until browned and cooked through, about 3 minutes.

Here comes the beef!

Reduce heat to low, cover, and let simmer for 2 minutes. (I don’t have a skillet with a lid so I had to jimmy-rig it with a large bowl, hence no pictures of this step! 🙂 )

Serve it up and if you like, season to taste with salt. Enjoy!

Did this just come out of a take-out box? Sure looks like it huh? (I made this for lunch and wasn't super hungry so instead of doubling it like I usually do for Mike and I we just split the one serving, this picture is only half the size of the whole serving!)

My kitchen smelled like garlicy beefy broccoli heaven while this was cooking! Mmmmm!

THE REVIEW:

My first bite reaction: Mmmmm, good! (Seriously, that’s what I said, apparently at lunch time I’m not so witty!)

Mike’s first bite reaction: Oh, this broccoli is good!

Texture: The broccoli was perfect. Cooked through but still slightly crunchy. The beef wasn’t perfect (I like a bit more a sear on my beef) and kind of had bit of a boiled texture. Overall, this reminded me of Chinese take-out, almost exactly!

Taste: Seriously loved the crap out of this! The flavor was perfect, the snap peas with the broccoli and the mushrooms, a little thickened sauce and some beef. The garlic wasn’t over powering and added a nice background flavor. I’m not gonna lie, I actually licked the plate when I was done with this! (yeah, it was that GOOD!)

Creativity: Maybe I’m just not in the “know” when it comes to Chinese food, but I didn’t know that this dish could be so easy. I honestly thought that it was way too complicated to even try to recreate this dish, and never bothered to try it! I give this a 2 out of 5 for creativity since it was just a swap, but a bonus for adding extra veggies!

Satisfaction: Didn’t you just read that I licked the plate when I was done? I was satisfied heart, body, mind and soul! I could have eaten the whole thing (instead of splitting it with Mike). I even made the same veggies with the same sauce for dinner later that night, 6 weight watcher points well used!

What’s your favorite Chinese take out?

(Quick Weight Watchers Weight-in update: (for those who care) yesterday was weight-in day. I followed my plan exactly, only used 1.5 extra weekly points (out of 35) earned 17 activity points and even though I lost 7.5 pounds last week, gained 2.4 pounds this week. Maybe it was just meant to be, 7.5 in one week is a bit much right? My body was just catching up? 5 pounds in 2 weeks is still something to be proud of? Can’t say I’m not frustrated!)

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Filed under beef, broccoli, chinese food inspired, lunch