Do you need diet friendly but tasty snack? My Spicy Baked Spring Rolls

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Spicy baked spring roll, No dipping sauce needed

Spicy baked spring roll, No dipping sauce needed

Baked spring roll, no extra oil from deep frying

Baked spring roll, no extra oil from deep frying

I was cleaning my refrigerator and found left overs of pickled octopus I brought from Japan months ago and last night baked calamari. A little bit surprised and felt guilty, since I insist on buying the octopus and happy with them as I posted then here.

I have to make something tasty out of it. I can’t let any food wasted without trying to save it or add more values to it. So, I search for inspiration from the rest of my fridge and I felt a light bulb went on in my head.

I rinsed the pickled octopus, to reduce the acidity and pungent smell then chopped it finely. I took my calamari with the rest of baked garlic and ginger then chopped all of them finely too. Now, I got tinny calamari and octopus bits.

I cut half of plain white cabbage from refrigerator and sliced them into thin narrow stripes. I was thinking about adding extra spiciness to compliment the natural acidity and fishiness of both seafood. I had ready to use Sambal Terasi (fish paste based Sambal), that add saltiness besides spiciness.

As my favorite teve chef Jamie Olliver said, taste it! taste it! and taste it!. A couple pinches of sugar, balance everything and the mix was ready to go. I got left over spring roll pastry and then used it to wrap the mix into neat packages. Well, some of them weren’t that neatly wrapped, since I had to put the mix as much as I can into one sheet of pastry, so everything will be ready to bake.

Light brush of last drops of olive oil, continued with margarine to my cookie sheet and the spring rolls. I put them in the oven and left it to do other chores.

When I smell something delicious, that remind me of  grilled fish or grilled calamari, I turn the oven off and let everything still inside the oven. When it’s the time for lunch, I took my spring rolls out and taste them.

To be honest I didn’t think it will taste than great. Fortunately It was delicious. I ate three of them straight away. The pastry become so crunchy without the greasy after taste.

I don’t even need any dipping sauce. It salty, It sour, crunchy and slightly sweet. I love it! It only veggie and protein! Okay some carb too, but It still healthier than deep fry spring rolls.

My lesson from today is:

Baked spring roll with any left over vegetable from the fridge will be my to go food when I crave for crunchy salty snacks.

My pick on Indonesian perfect summer treats

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Never get bored with this fruit! Palm fruit or what we usually called “Siwalan” fruit. The flesh are similar with young coconut and each one of them is pocket of coconut water-like liquid. It’s gummy, chewy, jelly-like and refreshing. Best served after chilled in refrigerator.

Jambu air Cincalo

Rose apples are cute, with their pink pouty lips. This fruit is my childhood remedy for summer heat. My neighbor had the tree and the apples are all over the place. We called them “Jambu Cincalo”, usually eat them directly or with peanut based sambal.

Jus daun Pandan

Don’t worry, the green liquid is not contain biohazards. In fact, it’s the most organic juice as organic as it can be. It was a Pandanus leaf’s juice. My mom has a lot of Pandanus leaf’s  bushes. Often she picked a lot and make all sort of food and beverages out of it. It’s grassy, in the good way, and had lovely fragrant that’s were all natural. I used to drink this syrup with a bunch of ice cubes, so its frozen cold, under the mid day sun. Did you just salivating…?

Putu Mayang (polos dan bermahkota)

Yes, this cake also made with Pandan leaf juices. When I crave on cupcake, It’s seem too much If I looked for the usual one. To much cream, to heavy and just too sweet for hot summer day. Indonesian version of cupcake is called “Putu Ayu”. It’s very light, between sweet and savory. Specially when you bite the the fresh coconut shredded’s ‘crown’ , just Yummy.

What’s you favorite treat on summery day?

Look what I found! Japanese summer snacks (2)

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I found the sweet ones on the same shops. A rather large shops (compare to the others) at Ameyoko market. One thing I could say about this shop, it’s adorable but quite busy. I don’t catch the name, but it near the cherry vendors. The front part of the store are piles of crunchy snacks, followed with spreads of sweet treats. All kind of mochi cakes; in square, round, rectangle, character shaped; translucent or colorful type; regular red bean paste filling or chocolate, almond, strawberry, pineapple and a whole lot more. The spongy cakey snack like Kastella, Dorayaki and others with red bean paste fillings. The assorted packed, contain the salty crackers and sweet treats. The next shelf is my target, all things chocolate.

They have so many varieties of chocolates truffles with different fillings in different brands. I’ve tried some of them at my previous visit, quite soapy and not very good. I’m sticking to my plan, buying as much as Kit Kat in different flavor I could find. Unfortunately, there were only two flavors available: Green tea and Dark Chocolate. I grab a bunch of those  and put it to my cart. Since then, every time I can find snack shops or Konbini, I always look for different Kit Kat flavor. Unfortunately, can’t find the summer special flavor or package yet.

Ooops, I forgot. I found a few of funky flavor at one of the corner of the Tokyo central stations. It’s a Cantaloupe,  chocolate orange dan strawberry. But the price they tagged on it, Oh my God! unreasonable. The smaller package size with the one I bought from Ameyoko for 215 Yen, they charged 800 – 1200 Yen. I think, for a tiny chocolate wafer with uncommon flavor, It’s not worth the money.

Moons stone on ceramic jewel box

Moons stone on ceramic jewel box

I’ve seen this at Singapore before. Looked a colorful tiny bevel for aquarium, they called it Moon stones. It really is a milk chocolate in candied colorful shell, carved like stones. It quite tasty and cheap too, I bought it in a huge plastic package to share with my niece and nephew back home. By the way, the ceramic case is actually a jewel box given by  a friend of a friend as memento from Japan.

There are a whole lot more snacks, food and spices at stores and stall in Ameyoko market. If I could, I want to bring a sample of every one of them, but that will cross my budget limit. At least I have my personal mementos from Japan, salty and sweet eatable nick nacks.

What’s your most interesting food/beverages mementos from traveling?

Rijsttafel malam minggu

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Rijsttafel di Indonesia, secara bebas dapat diartikan sebagai “makan besar”.
Bila kita perhatikan, hal ini menjadi kebiasaan baru masyarakat Indonesia. Paling tidak masyarakat Jakarta, yang terlihat jelas oleh saya.
Namun bukan versi rijsttafel konvensional yang isinya hidangan ala peranakan ataupun fiesta masakan padang, versi malam mingguan berbeda sama sekali.
Dari mana saya tahu?
Mudah saja, coba sama-sama kita lihat perubahan atmosfer di minimarket, supermarket dan hipermarket setiap malam minggu.

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Tiba-tiba aktor-aktor pembelanja reguler (yaitu ibu rumah tangga, pembantu rumah tangga atau pedagang) digantikan oleh kelompok pembelanja spesialis malam minggu. Siapakah mereka?
Mereka adalah para suami yang sengaja pulang cepat (sendiri atau mengajak anak-istrinya).
Aneka makanan beku (nugget, sosis, burger, bakso, es krim) kesukaan anaknya, durian monthong untuk istrinya, minuman bersoda, aneka roti-kue-biskuit adalah piala-piala kesuksesan hasil kerja sepanjang minggu untuk dibawa pulang.
Anak-anak remaja usia belasan tahun hingga awal duapuluhan yang telah mengumpulkan uang jajan khusus untuk dibelanjakan pada malam minggu.
Berbagai makanan ringan (Lays, Mr. Potato, Cheetos, Smax, Taro, Kacang Garuda, dll), minuman berkarbonasi (Coca cola, Pepsi, dll), lebih disukai yang beralkohol (Bir Bintang, Heineken, Mix Max, dll), aneka cokelat dan permen (Silver Queen, Cadbury, M&M’s, Van Houten, Yuppy, dll), es krim (Walls, Campina, Diamond, dll) dan mi instan (Pop Mie, Indomie, Supermie, Mie Sedap, Mie Nissin, dll) memenuhi keranjang belanjaan mereka.

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Para wanita atau pria single yang bersiap untuk malam mingguan namun membutuhkan quick fix. Kelompok ini akan mencari spons bedak, bedak padat, lipstik, lipgloss, pembalut wanita, kapas kecantikan, penyegar mulut/ obat kumur, permen karet, minuman berenergi (Lipovitan, Kratingdaeng, dll), pewarna rambut, aneka lotion kulit, kondom, pil KB, dan benda lain sejenisnya.
Pemuda-pemudi yang akan menghabiskan malam mingguan di depan televisi atau komputer.
Mereka memborong DVD bajakan, pop corn siap makan ataupun yang dimasak microwave, makanan dan minuman ringan dan mi instan.
Gairan malam minggu rupanya tidak berhenti hingga pintu keluar toko.
Penjual makanan di beranda toko pun mendulang rejeki lebih dari biasanya. Aneka gorengan, martabak manis, martabak telur, jus buah, kue pukis atau tukang apapun yang bertengger pasti akan laku terjual.
Bisa mulai dibayangkan bila semua makanan itu digelar di meja makan, jadilah rijsttafel versi urban.
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