The Girl Who Ate Everything

Blogging about food and whatever since 2004.

Home Cooking Edition: Moo Pad Krapow, Moffles, and Something Vegan

This entry originally took place on March 23.

Ever since becoming obsessed with the Sidewalk, aka gai pad krapow, I've wanted to learn how to make it. Because it's stupidly overpriced at the Thai place near my office and you could probably make a bucket of it for the same amount of money.

And then in February Michele posted a recipe for gai pad krapow on Serious Eats! IT WAS A SIGN! A sign that said, "BOPPY, MAKE THIS!" Or, "BOPPY, GET SOME FRIENDS TO HELP YOU MAKE THIS!" The latter, more like.

Kathy took most of the responsibility for Moo Pad Krapow Night by buying the ingredients—"moo" instead of "gai" because she bought pork instead of chicken (pork is easier to find in Chinatown)—and donating the use of her kitchen. I mostly..stood there. And ate.


Oh wait, I think I chopped these chilis! Maybe.

green beans
Green beans!

And my have have chopped those green beans.


And I may have made the nam pla prik (chili fish sauce), which would explain why it was probably way way off from whatever a Thai grandmother would've made. I just squeezed in as much lime juice would come out of half a lime and then poured in a rough amount of fish sauce—3 or 4 parts fish sauce to one part lime juice, according to Michele. It tasted fine to us. And that's all that matters.

pork (it was easier to get than chicken in chinatown)
Mm, pan of pork.

Kathy and her roommate Shann were in charge of the actual cooking part. We added the ground pork to the green beans. After the pork was mostly cooked, Kathy sloshed in an indeterminate amount of fish sauce and dumped in some sugar.

look at da meats

Then we added basil. Probably not the right kind of basil (all I know is that it wasn't your regular sweet basil sort), but Kathy tried to find holy basil—it just didn't find her. DAMN YOU, HOLY BASIL.

Shann = egg fryer
Frying eggs

Shann was in charge of frying the eggs while Kathy plated the porky mixture. (Their other roommate Stephanie is also in the photo, in case you're wondering why there's another body.)

ta da, we have food!

And voilà, four servings of awesome fried egg-topped moo gai krapow for not much money. Cooking is much more enjoyable when you have other friends to help you do it.

extra cake from kathryn and dan
Milk bar cake.

It also helps when a friend donates her extra Milk Bar cake to you for dessert.

Kathy is violating that bear like you wouldn't believe.

And there's this. I won't explain this.

Moffle and Okonomiyaki Night

This entry originally took place on March 25.

Mochi...they don't even know what's coming.

Moffles, or mochi waffles, have been on my "to do" list for a long time. But making them depended on having a waffle maker.

Oh, Greg has a waffle maker! Okay, problem solved.

Using Erin's moffle how-to for guidance, Kathy and I went to Greg's place for Moffle Night, which ended up being Okonomiyaki Night because on their own, moffles are not quite as interesting as their cutesy name let me to believe. Then again, it's not like plain mochi is all that interesting either. You have to put the right stuff on it. And that's probably where we failed.

But first, moffle birth!

into the waffle maker it goes
Mochi blocks, bye bye.

Mochi blocks go in...

first batch o moffles

...And moffles come out! Very crispy moffles. We probably put the first batch in for too long, thinking it would brown-ify when it actually just stays white. Oops. They tasted like crispy burnt rice bits—think of the dregs at the bottom of a pan or rice cooker post-rice cooking. Not bad.

second batch of moffles moffles
Round two.

We tried another batch with red bean mochi and mugwort mochi. Mugwort was kinda..well, mugworty. Vegetal? Not my thing.

mochi in the toaster toasted mochi
Toasted mochi.

Greg tried sticking a butter-topped mochi block in his toaster oven. The resulting mochi tasted like popcorn. A block of chewy toasty starch-ness. Not bad. Not...awesome.

As you can see, we didn't really put condiments on anything (we tried okonomiyaki sauce until it got boring), which probably made eating this mochi about an exciting as eating plain rice, but worse because once the moffles cool down and de-crispify, they enter the territory of suck. Eat these babies fast if you don't want to gnaw into the gummy chewiness that develops as the crispiness decays.

Greg is making okonomiyaki

Thank god Greg made a huge ass okonomiyaki as Kathy and I focused on moffle making. He didn't look at a recipe for this—he just used his brain. A brain that at one point had read a recipe for okonomiyaki. He mixed together corn, chopped cabbage, scallions, and probably other chopped things before combining it with okonomiyaki batter and plopping it into the pan.

Pork = the magic touch.

Thinly sliced pork was added for a meaty crust on one side...

Crispified okonomiyaki
The other crust.

...While the other side crisped to a golden brown. Or a yellow brown. It's not really golden, technically speaking.

bonito-ize the okonomiyaki
Fish sprinkles!

After slathering on okonomiyaki sauce, Greg sprinkled bonito flakes on top, which, if you haven't seen it before, do an eerie life-like sway in response to the okonomiyaki's steam.

Greg mayos the okonomiyaki
Is it mayo time? Yes.

And then it was time for Kewpie mayo application. Neatly lined up strands of mayo all over the sauced and bonito-ed surface. Oh god, yes.

okonomiyaki yessss

The finished product was a beautiful crispy wedge of cabbage-y egg-y corn-y pork-y fish-y sweet-tart-y mayo-y goodness, where you can't really distinguish the individual components unless one is missing, at which point it just doesn't taste as good. Greg though he had made too much, but we ate it all. And subsequently groaned with fullness.

Greg will throw more okonomiyaki get-togethers. Kathy and I will make sure of it. With physical force. And a lot of glaring.

Something Vegan

This entry originally took place on March 26.

Cooking without pork.

Diana and I went to Colin's apartment for a Night of Vegan Stuff. Because Colin is vegan. Which means we left the cooking in his hands.

brussels sprouts and asparagus
So much green.

First, we prepped a dish of brussels sprouts, asparagus, and broccoli stalk seasoned with salt and olive oil.

brussels sprouts and asparagus

And it came out all browned and whatnot. The asparagus cooked to a soft, buttery texture, while the brussels sprouts were less delicious and still too bitter for my taste. Not bad (hey, it gave me NUTRIENTS!), just not as good as the asparagus.

colin + block of tofu
Colin likes tofu. A lot.

And then there was tofu.

Tofu, fryyy.

Colin browned the tofu before adding the veggies—broccoli and peppers, mostly—and thickened soy sauce.

veg and tofu stir fry and rice
Garnished with..brown rice?

And then we feasted on bowls of veggie tofu stir fry topped with leftover brown rice and had a long conversation about words that seem to sound more natural if said with a British accent instead of an American accent (such as "brilliant," "fantastic," and "magnificent," along with various synonyms..or maybe we just can't pull them off).


Jennifer / April 12, 2009 11:58 PM

OoOoh I made the Gai Pad Krapow using the recipe from Serious Eats and I distinctly remember it said use 2-3 serrano peppers for a VERY MILD heat, which I did, only I was tearing up and coughing from the chili fumes while I was cooking! It was still pretty tasty though!

I've also been dying to try those moffles and fortunately I'm going to my parents' house in a few weeks where fresh homemade mochi awaits!

Kathryn / April 13, 2009 1:14 AM

The moo pad krapow sounds interesting, but more than anything I want to try to make the okonomiyaki. I've never made ANYTHING even remotely resembling either, but you make it look (fairly) simple ... to the grocery store!


Jasmine / April 13, 2009 1:51 AM

I never had gai pad krapow and I wished I tried it before I went on my non-meat diet. The pork version you guys made looks good.

I love mochi and I love waffles. I assume that I will love moffles. I really like okonomiyaki but I eat it without mayo because I'm one of those people that get nightmares from mayonnaise.

Colin's cooking is very similar to mine, only I don't like brussels sprouts.

Caroline / April 13, 2009 2:00 AM

MMM, mochi :) I've actually never seen mochi sold like that before. Does the texture get gooey-er after it's toasted? I think I would maybe try it coated in egg and pan-fried kind of like New Year's cake.

Edd / April 13, 2009 4:58 AM

Oooh ive had the Gai Pad Krapow recipe bookmarked on Serious Eats since it was on, doesnt look too complicated will have to give it a go (shame i dont have the cake for dessert though)

kim / April 13, 2009 8:08 AM

is the mochi waffle specially made to make mochi? I think I still prefer waffles. :) Perhaps you should add some sweet red beans next time, like a daifuku.

anna / April 13, 2009 12:06 PM

That vegan stuff is way different from the vegan stuff I made at Colin's (new!) place last week. I made vegan puff pastry...never again. Earth Balance scares me. So does vegan mozzarella. IT DOESN'T MELT. It turned out tasty, despite me transporting it from Maine in a cooler and rolling it out with a soy sauce bottle. And throwing the rest of it together with things found in Colin's relatively bare cupboards and stuff from the grocery store around the corner.

Long story short, stir fry with tofu is a better vegan meal than fakey puff pastry "pizza". I just wanted to go with the "wow" factor of "oh hey I made this vegan puff pastry all by myself and lugged it on the bus and now I'm gonna bake it with random stuff I find."

I'll stop taking up space in your comments now.

SuperChomp / April 13, 2009 3:20 PM

KEWPIE MAYO FTaWesome! That stuff is seriously yummy. I would eat it out of the bottle.

Yay for cooking parties. It's great to have friends to cook with, even if a friend can only chop things :) (hey, at least you weren't plonked in front of the couch with a beer in one hand and the remote control in the other XD)

Hi! / April 13, 2009 4:41 PM

Where did you get the red bean and mugwort flavored mochi? M2M? Chinatown? JasMart? Please let me know! Thanks!

Btw, every home cooked meal looks delicious!

roboppy / April 14, 2009 12:22 AM

Jennifer: I avoided the tearing/coughing by not being in charge of the cooking, BWAHAHA..ha.

Kathyn: OH GOD okonomiyaki is so tasty in a comforting way. The condiments have a lot to do with it. You should be able to buy okonomiyaki flour and sauce from a japanese market.

Jasmine: Maybe you can make a vegetarian one!..ish..with gluten nubs or something. But then you need a replacement for fish sauce. I'm not sure what a good veg equivalent is?


Caroline: The moffle isn't gooey; it's all crust, really, cos it gets smooshed out. If you like crust, then YAY!

Edd: It's pretty easy; try it!

Kim: I too prefer regular wheaty waffles. The waffle maker is for regular waffles or anything waffle-shaped, if that's what you were asking? I like daifuku a lot..I should've topped the moffle with red bean.

Anna: OHH YOU WERE AT COLIN'S!! Ahheeu! I talked to Colin about that and then I forgot. Phooeey me. ;_; So boo to vegan puffs then? Blah. He should just go veg for the sake of eating butter cos BUTTER IS AWESOME. Sucks about the failed vegan puff pastry. :( You have taught us an important lesson!


SuperChomp: True, I am not so useless I am placed in front of a TV. WOOHOO! Also, most of my friends don't have TVs. :) We have one in my apartment but it doesn't get much use out of me.

Hi!: Greg says he got it from Sunrise Mart. I would think you can get it as JAS Mart too though? Not sure about M2M.

anna / April 14, 2009 12:19 PM

The vegan puff pastry comes out ok, it just involves melted Earth Balance, which is one of the creepiest things I've ever worked with. Plus because of the higher melting point is impossible to get off your hands.

It's ok you forgot - in a few months I'll be moving down to start pastry school and we can try to convert Colin back to butter! Plus I will need people willing to eat my classwork.

amy / April 14, 2009 7:06 PM

wow, moffles!! what a concept.. never heard of that!! but i love mochi!!

all food is making me salivate!

roboppy / April 15, 2009 12:17 AM

Jen: I poured it on as I saw fit. I love saaaaauce.

Anna: I'm thinking of Earth Balanced-coated is not a good image. Or feeling. (shudders)

OMG YES PASTRY SCHOOOL I am eating your leftovers.

Amy: Moffles is a weird form of mochi; I prefer plain squishy mochi, methinks. But the waffle shape is awesome.

Eileen / April 16, 2009 2:11 AM

Omg!! I want a moffle now! That's so ingenius to put mochi in a waffle-maker.

And wow what a coincidence, I'm currently trying to teach myself how to make katsu and okonomiyaki o0;

Mila / April 16, 2009 3:11 AM

A couple of years ago, my Japanese American brother in law showed me how he'd make a quick afternoon snack with mochi, toasted in the oven for a few minutes (it ballooned a bit, maybe it's only Japanese style mochi that does this?), dipped into a sauce of soysauce and sesame oil. Yum! Loved it a lot.

Nikki / April 16, 2009 10:43 AM

EVERYTHING sounds great! I would suggest cutting the brussel sprouts in half (or even quarters for the larger ones) before roasting - cooks through and gets rid of most of the bitterness.

Then again, most vegetables taste good roasted.

808jgirl / May 1, 2009 3:29 AM

I love the mugwort mochi but the kind made with brown rice from the health food store. That's where I discovered the perfect mochi for waffles - apple cinnamon mochi! (I think they also have BROWNIE mochi now too!?! ) And, if you do it right you get a chewy interior and a crispy exterior. Takes practice. But of course, so worth it - hahahah....

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