Korean Shrimp and Rice Porridge (Saewoojuk)

/ Monday, March 30, 2015

Korean Shrimp and Rice Porridge (Saewoojuk)
Korean Shrimp and Rice Porridge (Saewoojuk)
Korean Shrimp and Rice Porridge (Saewoojuk)
Korean Shrimp and Rice Porridge (Saewoojuk)

There's nothing like getting sick to make you appreciate the things you are able to do every day. Last week Reuben fell ill with a fever, chills, headache: the whole shebang. I followed a few days later. We were so miserable and unable to do ANYTHING for days. It was all I could do to make Helen food and watch videos. I was nearly mad with boredom. All of this to say: I had a good reason for not posting for over two weeks. Sorry.

But about this porridge

I must confess that I was first attracted to this recipe because of my interest in the Korean Drama and culture. I was pretty reluctant to give Korean TV shows a try at first, but when I was desperate for entertainment after giving birth to Helen, I softened. To my surprise and characters and stories were very interesting. And all of the dramas that I have seen have been pretty clean and innocent in the romance department, especially compared to American TV shows. 

Food tends to figure fairly largely in K-Dramas - the main characters are shown enjoying various dishes. I may or may not have decided to make Ramen after watching Liar Game. And, when I saw this recipe for Saewoojuk, I was intrigued. Not ONLY because it was a Korean dish, but also because the ingredients sounded amazing. 

It was really delicious. Helen loved it. I can't wait to make more, when I can find some good shrimp to make it with. Also: Helen and I are now addicted to seaweed snacks

Also, if you've watched any K-Dramas (first of all: FRIEND!), let me know your favorites! Some of the shows I have most enjoyed have been (in no particular order): You Who Came From Another Star, Liar Game, and Pinocchio.

Linking up at Buns in My Oven.

Note: some links are affiliate. All opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting Buttered Side Up!

Homemade Pistachio Pudding

/ Monday, March 9, 2015

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This post was originally published on April 30, 2012, on Cooking for Seven. I am sharing it here for you to enjoy!

Homemade Pistachio Pudding

When I was a little girl, I always requested my favorite dessert for my birthday, or any other special occasion: Striped Delight (shortbread crust, a cream cheese + whipped cream layer and pistachio pudding on top). I still remember being horrified when, for my birthday (probably my fifth or sixth), there was no pistachio pudding in the house so lemon pudding was substituted. I was crushed.

Homemade Pistachio Pudding

A while back, I spied a recipe for homemade pistachio pudding on Joy the Baker’s blog. I knew it needed to happen in my kitchen someday, but I only worked up the gumption to make it a few days ago.

The results? A creamy pudding with wonderful depth of flavor. Does it replace the fakey instant pudding I grew up with? No, it tastes nothing like that. Is that a bad thing? No. I’ll probably eat more instant pistachio pudding before I die, but this recipe is a lovely, more natural alternative.

Homemade Pistachio Pudding

Recipe Notes:

  • Reuben and I agreed that, while very tasty, this pudding was a bit too sweet. Next time I’ll be cutting out a bit of the sugar.
  • You can definitely use a natural sweetener (which is probably what I’ll do next time) if you wish. I used granulated because I wanted the pudding to be a pretty color for photos.

Pistachio Pudding

Pistachio pudding without all of the additives!

Serves 6 | from Joy the Baker | printable page


1/2 cup salted pistachio nuts,
1/3 cup granulated sugar (or a natural sweetener),
2 tablespoons water,
2 cups whole milk,
2 large egg yolks,
1/3 cup granulated sugar (or a natural sweetener),
2 tablespoons cornstarch, preferably organic,
pinch of salt,
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract,
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened,
1/2 cup pistachio nuts, chopped,
whipped cream, for serving,


To make the Pistachio Paste:

Place pistachios in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse until the nuts are in small bits. Add the sugar and water, and blend until relatively smooth.

To make the Pudding:

1) Spoon Pistachio Paste into a medium saucepan. Add the milk and whisk over medium heat. Heat milk and pistachio until steamy and hot.

2) While milk is heating, whisk together granulated sugar, egg yolks, cornstarch and pinch of salt. Mixture will be thick. Keep whisking until it’s smooth. Pour about 1/2 cup of the steaming pistachio milk into the sugar and egg mixture. Whisk together. Add another half cup of hot milk and whisk to incorporate. Return the milky egg mixture into the saucepan over medium heat.

3) Heat pudding mixture over medium heat until thick and bubbly. Whisk almost constantly. You might also want to use a heat-proof spatula to stir the mixture, ensuring that the sides and corners of the pan aren’t burning. Boil for about 1 minute, or until thickened. Remove from heat and stir in butter and vanilla extract, until butter is melted. Pass cooked pudding through a fine mesh strainer set over a medium bowl. This will ensure that any cooked egg bits don’t make it into the finished pudding. Press the pudding through the strainer. Add a few of the pistachio nut bits that the strainer catches back to the pudding if you’d like.

4) Spoon into small ramekins, place plastic wrap over the individual puddings (so the plastic touches the top of the pudding), and refrigerate for at least 4 hours, or overnight.

5) Top with lightly sweetened whipped cream and chipped pistachios. Pudding will last, covered in the refrigerator, for up to 4 days.

Monday Lovelies

/ Monday, March 2, 2015


It's Monday! Yay? I hope you guys had a lovely weekend. 

Here are some things that I've been loving lately. Enjoy!

You guys. I had no idea that SMEG makes small appliances! This toaster is just adorable. If only it was affordable as well.

12 tips on how to style food like a pro
This post (via Domaine) has some great food styling tips. If you're new to food photography, you should definitely give it a read.

Chye Seng Huat Hardware
[Photo credit: Shuzhen on Flickr]

I love latte art. It makes me happy.

Why do all of the Herriot and Grace products have to be SO expensive? They are gorgeous. 

The Bojon Gourmet: DIY Sushi at Home: A Video Collaboration!
I really enjoyed this post about homemade sushi via The Bojon Gourmet. It's very helpful to see a video of it being made, especially if you've never attempted it before. It's easier than it sounds!

My little Helen modeling these adorable pintucked pantalettes (hand made by Reuben's sister). You should check out her line of children's clothing.
Reuben's sister, Amanda, has launched a line of children's clothing on Etsy. Here Helen is modeling the adorable pantalettes and raglan dress.

Creamy Mushroom Alfredo. I've gotta give this a try...
I'd really like to give this Mushroom Alfredo a try. Recipe + photo via The Cooking Jar.

[Photo via The Design Files]

This kitchen. I die. Oh the copper. Oh the wood. Oh the open shelf! I loved it so much I pinned it to my Domestic board twice. Oops.

Dansk Kobenstyle Cookware - anthropologie.com
I kind of adore enamel bakeware. This set from Anthropologie is beautiful.

What's been on your to-cook/to-buy list lately?

Note: some links are affiliate. All opinions are my own.

A Healthy Cake For Helen's 2nd Birthday (Coconut Flour, Paleo Friendly, Gluten Free)

/ Monday, February 23, 2015


Coconut Flour Cake
Coconut Flour Cake
Helen's 2nd Birthday


The last couple of years have definitely been the most challenging of my life (so far). I have learned so much, about myself, about how hard it is to be and mom and wife at the same time, about how frustrating and lovable kids can be.

I knew months ago that I wanted to make a cake for Helen's second birthday. She's never had cake before. I also knew that I wanted to make a healthy cake because I wanted to feel good about letting her eat lots of it.


First let give you the reasons for the ingredients I chose. I don't intend to feed Helen a gluten-free diet. She has eaten (organic) white flour on occasion and I haven't noticed any adverse effects. However, I don't like the idea of her eating gobs of white flour.

This might seem strange to some, but I also don't want her eating whole wheat flour. In fact, I would much rather she ate organic white than whole wheat flour. You see, whole wheat flour can be very difficult to digest unless it is properly prepared. And I didn't feel like sprouting or soaking her cake (so much work!).

Some people like to use nut flours in place of grain flours, but, as I mentioned in a previous post, nuts can also be difficult to digest if they aren't properly prepared. I didn't feel like soaking, dehydrating, and grinding nuts.

Then I discovered The Urban Poser's recipe for coconut flour cake. I had some coconut flour on hand, so I thought it would be a great recipe to try. I was quite pleased with how it turned out!


I followed the recipe for the cake pretty closely, cutting out just a smidgen of the honey. I also used butter in place of coconut oil. I doubled the recipe and baked the cake in two 6-inch cake pans and a loaf pan.

For the filling, I made a quick strawberry jam by boiling and mashing a bag of frozen strawberries with a little honey, lemon juice and gelatin.

For the frosting I made stabilized whipped cream. I sweetened it with sucanat and stabilized it with grass-fed gelatin.

I also made a half batch of my Homemade Vanilla Ice Cream, but I subbed vanilla extract for the beans and cut out a bit of the sweetener (I used sucanat).

If you prefer a paleo-friendly cake, you can follow The Urban Poser's recipe.

She's Two

Coconut and Chicken Curry Soup

/ Wednesday, February 18, 2015


Curry Coconut and Lime Chicken Soup - Buttered Side Up

Growing up, my mom would occasionally make something delicious for supper: Chicken Curry. It was a pretty rare occurrence. And it's funny how much we enjoyed it. It was just the sort of thing at which my sisters and I would usually turn up our noses. But we knew that it was awesome.

Curry Coconut and Lime Chicken Soup - Buttered Side Up

Fast forward to my teen years, and I discovered the wonderful world of curries. We sampled Thai curry and completely fell in love. 

We really went through a curry craze. Our mom became quite sick of it. But somehow I kept my love. If a dish is described as having curry, my interest increases.

Curry Coconut and Lime Chicken Soup - Buttered Side Up

The combination of flavors in this soup really hits a home run for me. It's so fresh, bright, and full of life. The coconut milk lends a hint of sweetness. The jalapenos give a barely noticeable kick of heat.

By the by, this recipe was one of the most popular that I ever published on Cooking for Seven. It kind of irks me that the photo in that post was one of my least favorite to accompany one of my recipes. I guess the true character of this curry soup shone through the shoddy photography.

Coconut and Chicken Curry Soup

A fresh and flavorful curry soup.
adapted from Good Life Eats | Printable Page
Serves approximately 6


olive oil,
3 cups chopped cooked chicken,
1/2 of a large onion, chopped fine,
1-2 tablespoon grated fresh ginger,
1 1/2 cups chicken broth,
1 can (14 ounces) unsweetened coconut milk, full fat,
2 teaspoon curry powder,
1 jalapeño, seeded, minced,
2 tablespoons lime juice,
1 small red bell pepper, sliced thin,
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro, plus extra for garnish,
1/2 cup unsweetened chipped coconut, toasted (optional),
2 cups freshly cooked rice (optional).


1) Heat the olive oil in a medium sized soup pot over medium heat. Add the chicken to the oil, season lightly with salt and pepper. Sauté until cooked through and golden. Remove chicken and set aside. Sauté the onion, adding more oil if necessary, until tender.

2) Return the chicken to the pot with the onions. Add the ginger; cook for 1 minute. Add chicken broth, coconut milk, curry powder and jalapeno. Bring to a simmer over medium heat. Add bell pepper and cilantro and simmer an additional 3 minutes. Stir in lime juice. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

3) Optional: Spoon rice into 4 bowls. Top with a ladle or two of soup. Garnish with additional cilantro and a sprinkling of shredded coconut. Serve.

Bacon, Feta and Fig Pizza

/ Monday, February 9, 2015

Figgy Piggy Pizza
Figgy Piggy Pizza | Buttered Side Up
Figgy Piggy Pizza | Buttered Side Up
Figgy Piggy Pizza | Buttered Side Up
Figgy Piggy Pizza | Buttered Side Up

You guys, this pizza was so much fun to make. All of toppings pair so well. The sweet figs balance out the savory bacon and feta. It feels so fancy but it's pretty simple to make.

Reuben thought that the flavors were really good, but it was a tad dry (he was thinking it would be a regular pizza, not an appetizer). I think a drizzle of olive oil or a balsamic reduction would be lovely.

You can get my step-by-step photo instructions and the recipe over on the Tasty Kitchen Blog HERE.


How to Make Chicken Broth in a Crockpot/Slow Cooker

/ Monday, February 2, 2015


Homemade chicken broth can be so easy when you use a crockpot/slow cooker!

How to Make Chicken Broth in the Crock Pot - Buttered Side Up
One of my scariest kitchen mishaps actually involved homemade bone broth.

I had a pot bubbling away on the stove. Suddenly, we had to leave the house for an hour or so. You guessed it: I left the stove on by mistake. While we were headed back home, I remembered that I had left the broth simmering. I wondered if we would return to a house of cinders.

How to Make Chicken Broth in the Crock Pot - Buttered Side Up

"Well, at least the house didn't burn down," I said as we pulled in the driveway. But when we opened the front door, we were met with an acrid smoke. The broth had boiled completely away, leaving a charred chicken carcass. I felt so stupid. Our house stank for days. My poor pot still bears the marks.

Needless to say, I was a bit paranoid about making broth after that incident. 

How to Make Chicken Broth in the Crock Pot - Buttered Side Up

Then, I saw Mommypotamus making broth in her crockpot. Brilliant, I thought! I tried it for myself, and I fell in love. 

You see, broth is super easy to make, but it takes a LONG time to cook. It can be difficult to find a good block of time to simmer it to perfection. With the slow cooker, I can throw everything together in the evening, set it to low and simmer it all through the night and the next day.

How to Make Chicken Broth in the Crock Pot - Buttered Side Up

Here are a few tips and tricks for making your own broth:

* Make sure you buy organic veggies that are on the "Dirty Dozen" list. Onions are on the "Clean 15," so I buy those conventional or local.

* You can use a whole, uncooked chicken as well as the carcass of a roasted chicken. The meat will fall off the bones.

* Don't boil your broth too hard - it can result in broth that doesn't gel.

* If you get enough fat in your broth, you can actually store it in the refrigerator for up to 6 months, as demonstrated by Diana of My Humble Kitchen.

* You can always add extra gelatin to your broth if you so wish. I use this brand.

* Don't be afraid to use whatever vegetables you have on hand in your broth. Some ideas: mushrooms, garlic, potatoes, various herbs, and even kombu, AKA kelp (idea from Joy the Baker).

* If your chicken comes with the giblet and liver, throw those into the pot as well!
* Don't salt your broth too heavily before it's done simmering. Taste and adjust AFTER it has reduced.

How to Make Chicken Broth in the Crock Pot - Buttered Side Up

I would love to talk more about bone broth, but this post is long enough as it is. Maybe I'll have to do a follow-up post about the benefits of bone broth, how to store, and ideas for how to use it.

What was your biggest kitchen disaster? 

How to Make Chicken Broth in a Crockpot/Slow Cooker 
recipe adapted from Weston A. Price and Mommypotamus | makes about 6-8 cups of broth
Printable Page

  • 1 chicken carcass
  • cold water
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 3-4 carrots, chopped
  • 3 celery stalks, chopped
  • 1/4 cup vinegar or lemon juice
  • a bunch of parsley, optional (for added minerals)

Place the chicken carcass in your slow cooker and add enough cold water to cover. Add the onions, carrots, celery and vinegar and stir. Let sit for 30 minutes.

Add the salt and turn the crockpot to LOW. Simmer the broth for at least 6 and up to 48 hours. 10 minutes before the cooking time is up, add a bunch of parsley. Taste and adjust salt if necessary.

Allow the broth to cool until warm. Strain into storage containers. Refrigerate or freeze.

How to Make Chicken Broth in the Crock Pot - Buttered Side Up

Note: some links are affiliate. All opinions are my own.

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