Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Super Wok

I love Chinese takeout. One of the first things I needed to find as soon as my wife and I settled down was a reliable and quality Chinese takeout place. Luckily for me, the first place I tried turned out to be the best!

Super Wok is a small dine-in or carry-out restaurant on the edge of Norristown, PA. Its menu features all the Chinese-American classics, all done very well. It has a good selection of inexpensive and generous lunch specials that feature an entree and a side of pork fried rice. All are under $6.00 and each has enough food for two meals. Everything there tastes fresh; since it tends to be pretty busy for lunch and dinner, you don't have to worry about food getting old. Everything is cooked to order.

The kitchen is spotless, which I think might be one of the most important indicators of quality for any establishment, especially in a busy place. If a restaurant is clean and empty, it could just mean the staff are bored; if it's clean and busy, they have high standards.

My wife and I have always enjoyed the food we get there. My personal favorites are the mushu pork and the General Tso's chicken. My wife really likes the sesame chicken and the wonton soup. But, today I discovered my favorite thing: the doughnuts.

They serve Chinese doughnuts, 10 for $3.25, and oh my god it was a struggle to save any for my wife. Deliciously golden brown and rolled in sugar, light and fluffy on the inside, with a great savory depth from the frying oil. They are perfection and are currently the biggest threat to my diet.

My only criticism is that Super Wok could use a little improving on its customer service. I can't blame the staff for not speaking much English, but a little friendlier attitude would go a long way, especially when it's busy.

Criticism aside, Super Wok is my favorite Chinese take-out joint nearby, and if you live in the Norristown, PA, area you should definitely try it out.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Ham Chowder

After Easter a lot of people have plenty of leftover ham. My mother-in-law had purchased an entire extra ham, and insisted I take a freezer bag full of ham back home with me. My wife doesn't like ham any where near as much as I do, so I decided to make a great soup to help me use up a bag full of ham.

Serves: 10
Prep time: 10 min
Cook time: 20 min


2 tbsp olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 white onion, diced
½ lbs frozen corn
1 tsp dried thyme leaves
1 tsp dried basil leaves
2 tbsp flour
6 cups milk
2 lbs russet potatoes, cut into bite sized pieces
1.5 lbs ham
½ tsp salt
½ tsp pepper
¼ tsp smoked paprika
¼ tsp cayenne powder


Diced chives
Shredded cheddar cheese


Pour the olive oil into a stock pot or large dutch oven over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook until the onion is translucent, about 3 minutes. Add the corn, thyme, and basil and cook until the spices are fragrant, about 4 minutes. Stir in the flour until all moisture on the bottom of the pot is absorbed then turn the heat to low.

Slowly pour in the milk while vigorously whisking. Once all the milk is in, add the potatoes, bring the soup to a boil and then reduce to a simmer for about 10 minutes or until the potatoes are tender and easily pierced by a fork.

At this point you have a fairly thin soup, if you like it that way, feel free to add the ham and the rest of the seasonings and serve. If, like me, you want it thick and creamy, grab your handy stick blender and blend until creamy. After you get the consistency right, add the ham and the rest of the seasonings and serve garnished with the chives and cheddar cheese.

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Mushroom and Sausage Stir Fry

The other day, one of my coworkers was complaining about how much she doesn't like mushrooms so I was inspired to make a mushroom centered stir fry. I promise it was nothing personal. I wanted to make this dish healthy so I decided to cook with chicken sausage for the protein.

One of the things I love about cooking with chicken sausage is that it tends to come in a wide variety of creative flavors. It makes it fun and easy to create some very flavorful combinations. While this recipe calls for a specific flavor of sausage, any savory chicken sausage should do the trick.

Prep time: 20 min
Cook time: 20 min


3 tbsp olive oil
¼ cup sliced maitake mushrooms
5 oz sliced shiitake mushrooms
8 oz sliced baby bella mushrooms
1 lb. garlic and herb chicken sausage
½ c chicken stock
1 tbsp worcestershire sauce
½ tsp rubbed sage
½ tsp dried thyme leaves
½ tsp salt
½ cup chopped scallion greens


In a nonstick or cast iron skillet, heat the oil over medium high heat until it shimmers. Once the oil is hot, add the maitake mushrooms. Saute, stirring frequently, until the mushrooms start to brown around the edges. Add the rest of the mushrooms and cook, stirring constantly until they're browned as well before adding the sausage.

Saute the sausage until cooked through then deglaze the pan with the stock. Make sure you scrape any stuck on bits off the bottom, you don't want to give up on those flavors. Bring to a simmer and add the worcestershire sauce, sage, thyme, and salt and reduce to till the sauce thickens.

Remove from the heat and stir in the scallions before serving with rice, pasta, or quinoa. Enjoy!

Friday, April 7, 2017

Andouille Apple Stir Fry

I was trying to come up with something for dinner and I was standing in the produce section of my local mega mart. I thought, "What kind of vegetation doesn't usually end up in stir fries?" and I immediately thought of fruit. I've had some really great sausages that contained fruit, so I thought of making a sausage and apple stir fry. I wanted it to be sweet and spicy, so I added some apple cider and a bit of agave syrup. It turned out brilliantly, and I wanted to share it with you.


2 tbsp olive oil
1 medium onion, finely diced
1 large, sweet apple, diced
2 jalapenos, seeded and diced
1 lb of andouille, sliced
½ cup apple cider
3 tbsp of agave syrup


In a cast iron skillet, heat the oil to a simmer, add the jalapenos, and saute until lightly browned. Add the onion and apple and saute until they are translucent. Stir in the andouille before pouring on the apple cider and agave syrup.

Bring to a simmer and cook until the liquid forms a syrupy consistency, which will take about 5 to 10 minutes. Serve over rice, pasta, or quinoa.

Andouille is pretty spicy stuff, so I won't blame you if you decide to skip the jalapenos. I also recommend serving with some sour cream and a hard cider to dull the fire.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Raspberry Syrup

I love raspberries, and I especially love raspberry syrup on pancakes and waffles. When I was looking around for a good recipe, I kept seeing people calling for fresh raspberries, and that just doesn't make any sense to me. When frozen berries thaw, they release more juice, which I think is exactly what you want for making syrup. Plus, they are way cheaper and more available year-round.

This syrup works great on pancakes and waffles and in a range of delicious mixed drinks, like a raspberry tequila sunrise.


1 lb frozen raspberries
2 cups water
1 cup sugar
½ tsp vanilla


Pour raspberries into a medium saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a boil then, then reduce to a simmer and cook for 20 to 25 minutes.

Once the raspberries have started to loose their color, strain the liquid into another saucepan. Don't press on the berries to extract more juice—it will just make the syrup cloudy, and you've already gotten what they have to give.

Add the sugar and vanilla and bring to a simmer. Hold it at a simmer until it reaches the consistency you like. I find 10 minutes to be the perfect time, because it will give you a syrup that has enough body to be used as a topping but is thin enough to mix easily into cocktails. Skim off any foam that rises to the top.

Remove from the heat and let it cool before storing in a glass jar or bottle in the fridge. The syrup should stay good for a few weeks, but it tastes so good I doubt it will last that long.