Crispy Crunchy Wraps

You take a bite. The warm tortilla crunches soundly against your teeth, breaking into brittle shards as the delicious contents reveal themselves to your taste buds. I should be a novelist. But really, this is solid stuff right here. And all you need is a broiler. As in, no worries that your stove might explode…

Vegan BBQ Pulled Pork

    This. Is. Amazing. And also one of my favorite food hacks. Who knew that jackfruit – a spiky-looking fruit thing – could be used to make a nice, hearty barbecue? Obviously, this won’t be the exact same as pulled pork. But it does have way fewer calories if that’s what you’re into, and is also way better in…

Baked Honey & Soy Sauce Chicken Thighs

  Astoundingly tender. Sweet like warm honey, yet dangerous like an addiction. I can’t even describe it. I just can’t. I can’t even. I have lost the ability to can. If you have chicken thighs in the freezer, thaw them now. Break out the honey left over from the No-Oven Honey Roasted Almonds. If you…

Vegan Mashed Potatoes & Gravy

A real thing that happened recently, while planning a Friendsgiving: Friend: “We still need someone to make mashed potatoes and gravy…” Me: “Ooh I could do it! I could make vegan mashed potatoes and gravy!” *collective “uhhh” around the room and frowns of disgust* So apparently I’ve been living around such a bubble of tree-hugging millennials that I…

Sweet ‘n Crunchy Toast

  Oh gosh. Oh my gosh. Oh. My. Gosh. This is so simple and awesome. It’s mind-blowing. And if you haven’t had some version of sugary toast for breakfast lately, you’re missing out. Because these are So. Freaking. Amazing. So amazing, evidently, that I can’t speak more than one word per sentence. And you know,…

Actually Healthy Greek Yogurt Potato Salad

What’s the secret ingredient in this little potato salad? Well, sit down, kids, and let me tell you a story. Once upon a time, there lived a Potato. Now, this Potato was a kind and easy-going fellow, and he easily made friends with some other little foods. Some of his friends were bad apples, though….

Current Obsession: PB2

The three certainties in life are death, taxes, and the universal human experience of spooning peanut butter straight from the jar at 1:00am. And although peanut butter is “healthy” to people with self control (read: no one), it still has a lot of saturated fats and unnecessary calories. Which is why PB2 is so amazing –…

Try This: Toasted Croissants

This isn’t so much a recipe as it is a way of living. You will never eat croissants the same way again. A flaky, buttery, warm, crunchy, delicious start to your day. It’s especially delicious when you use a big fluffy croissant, snatched right out of the glass bakery display of your local grocery store….

Healthy Marinated & Steamed Tilapia

My mom is a seasoned veteran of the home cooking world, but even she raved over this recipe. “Cici,” she said excitedly on the phone. “You have to try this out.” “Oh, okay, yeah,” I replied, hoping she wasn’t using her mom senses to detect what I was eating at the moment. “What are you doing…

Simply Crispy Asparagus

I was really excited about having my own apartment kitchen this year, but then I realized something: I actually don’t eat a lot. For example, one day I raided the bulk foods section of my local grocery store. Among my digs: precisely $0.21 worth of black rice. Not that I counted the grains, but there were 132 of…

Baked & Breaded Fish Fillets

  Don’t get me wrong, I love my deep-fried fish fillets—preferably wedged between two sides of a warm and soft taco shell, embedded between a sprinkling of vibrant vegetables and topped with some form of zesty sauce.  But we can’t always have what we want. Sometimes we have to (try to be) somewhat (kind of) healthy…

Simple Onion and Bell Pepper Stir-Fry

Hey. Yes. I’m back. Back for the summer, back from my nine-month stint in the Kitchenless Dorm Corps, ready to take on the greatest recipes and thrillingest adventures. Because who wants to see me make a donut the size of my head?? (Inner voice: Meeee!) But before we go on our grand foodie journeys together,…

Try This: Easier Hard-Boiled Eggs

Have you been overcomplicating hard-boiled eggs? Probably. At first I thought Martha Stewart’s recipe was complicated just because she’s Martha Stewart. But then I found other recipes that called for the same kind of method: cover the eggs with one inch of water, leave on stove for exactly this many minutes, drain carefully, la la…

Savory Oatmeal

You’ve probably figured out by now that I like switching things up. So when the idea came to me to rethink one of my breakfast favorites — oatmeal — I jumped on it.  Literally. And I instantly regretted it. Anyway, savory oatmeal.  What? You might ask. What is this madness? But think about it. Sometimes…

20-Minute Lentil Soup

Ah, is there a food as comforting as soup? Warm, savory, aromatic. The perfect adieu dish for a cold cold winter that is soon to be over (tomorrow, in fact!).  The problem with soup is that it’s often unhealthy. Now, I’m certainly not opposed to the occasional splurge on cheese and butter and sugar, but soup is one…

Crunchy Chewy Kitchen Sink Cookies

Oh wow.  These turned out way better than I had anticipated, and I couldn’t wait to share this recipe with you!  These cookies ate the perfect balance between crunch and munch: they’re crispy and golden brown on the edges, and melty-gooey in the center. Absolutely stunning, and absolutely killer with a glass of cold milk….

Scrumptious Oatmeal Carrot Muffins

Do you fear the muffin man? I used to. But these simple little muffins changed everything. Now, you might recall that in the Kitchen Cici episode “Seriously Amazing Blueberry Muffins,” there were quite a few careful steps. I mean, those amazing blueberry muffins took some real deep-seafood-fried cooking patience. I have no idea what I just said….

Sweet ‘n Buttery Carrots

What can you do when you wake up one day and find that 6 pounds of carrots have found their way into your fridge? Well, you could make carrot muffins, carrot cake, and carrot soup, but that will only get you so far. What you need to do is eat straight carrot. I’m sorry, there…

10-Minute Breakfast Platter

Scrumptious. Filling. Balanced. This is the perfect breakfast if you’re looking for something warm and decent 20 minutes before you must leave the house. As much as I love Cheerios, I simply can’t eat it every day.  Okay that’s a lie.  But let’s not talk about my addictions.  Quick Breakfast Platter Ingredients 2 strips bacon…

Spicy Chili Meatballs

Don’t you dare buy pre-made meatballs ever again. Don’t take that as a challenge. This is not truth or dare. It’s not opposite day either. No but really it isn’t. Are you confused? Good. Now let’s get to the real business. For the longest time, I was intimidated by meatballs. You’re handling raw meat, first…

All-Natural Microwave Granola

You read that right. Crunchy granola in less than 5 minutes. No ovens involved. It’s pretty darn healthy too—none of that brown evaporated cane syrup rice juice business. I’ve actually been making it in my dorm room for quite some time, although I’m not entirely sure if my roommate approves of our room consistently smelling like…

Crispy Waffle Bits

Here’s a semi-good college cafeteria story: So in my school cafeteria there’s this breakfast bar, where you fill out an order form and they make pancakes/waffles/scrambled eggs on the spot. I’m a fan of breakfast, and a fan of ordering oversized plates of food, so it’s perfect. This was a Tuesday morning between the hours…

Commentary Cici: Souped-up Soup

When I hear the word “chicken noodle soup,” I have one reaction: let me eat it. That was particularly true last week when I experienced my first college illness. I desperately wanted chicken noodle soup, but my options were limited to Campbell’s Chicken Noodle Soup and Campbell’s Chicken Noodle Soup, both of which contained literally…

All-Natural Snow Cones

For some reason, snow cones (or “sno cones,” if you’re young & wild & free) are perceived as healthy. I have no idea why, as it’s just frozen water drizzled liberally with artificially-flavored corn syrup. It kind of reminds me of soda. But you see, it’s mostly made of water, and water is healthy. Let’s…

Lighter Hummus (without tahini)

I’m all about that olive oil, but I’m not about it enough to pour loads of it casually into my chickpeas. In this kitchen, hazelnuts are not to be distorted into sugary chocolate butter. Cocoa is not to be contorted into a barely-recognizable ganache butter. And chickpeas are not to be maimed into an oily…

Dark Chocolate Nutella Without Oil

Let me brag about this first.  This Nutella has 3.4 g of monounsaturated fat, 1.8g of protein, and 1.6g of fiber in every tablespoon.  It also tastes like a darker cousin of your favorite why-do-I-even-need-toast-I’ll-just-eat-it-out-of-the-can hazelnut spread. It’s like that one time your cousin went to the beach and got ten shades tanner than you did…

Juicy 15-Minute Pork Chops

This was the recipe that made me fall in love with thick cuts of meat. See, as an Asian, I’ve been taught to be deathly afraid of pink steak/pork/fish/clowns. Rule of thumb: if the meat isn’t cooked to death, neither is the bacteria. My carnivorous experience wasn’t juicy, tasty, or tender. It was basically the…

Healthier Rocky Road

Today, I wanted to eat mass quantities of crunchy chocolate-covered objects without feeling like an elephant. I think that’s fair. Today was also the day I re-discovered the big box of plain shredded wheat that’s been loitering in the pantry for 5 months. I know it’s healthy and whole grains and fiber and love and…

Easy Mooncakes with Mung Bean Filling

These things are so expensive in Asian supermarkets, you’d think they require hours of intense labor. Not so. Usually, mooncakes are made with somewhat exotic ingredients (golden syrup and lye water) and with even more exotic kitchen tools (namely, a special mooncake press). But look, my kitchen is currently located forty minutes away from the…

A Super-Healthy Butter

Peanuts, chickpeas, almonds, hazelnuts. Those are all healthy things by themselves, but when we make butter out of them, we put in a ton of oils. Yes, oils do have good healthy fats, but let’s be honest — how many of us actually only manage to eat recommended servings of anything with the word “butter” in it?…