Let’s Live True~ Express yourself

Got Beef? Then Make Nam Tok!

This delicious and simple dish is bursting with s many flavors. Fresh mint leaves mixed with some lime juice lend to the dishes spicy kick. I suggest using a good lean steak that can get you the rare meat without being overly chewy. You may not want to use all of the ingredients and that’s okay.Cooking is not just about following recipes but following your taste buds.

After grilling the meat (it’s okay if it seems too rare. The lime juice will cook it further) let it rest about a minute or two, then create thin slices (remember to use a very sharp knife) then put slices in a bowl. Slice up shallots and to bowl with meat then throw in chopped up mint, cilantro, and package of seasoning mix. Lastly add your fish sauce and lime to taste, your taste buds will thank you later. Mix all ingredients together and sit it on top of Jasmine white rice. Voila, you have a yummy meal everyone can enjoy.

Trying to keep to a low carb diet? No problem! Just et meat with sliced cucumbers or use romaine lettuce leaves as a wrap. Let me know if you made this dish at home and if you liked it. I am always curious how everyone’s food turns out. Until the next meal…live true and be you!

Ingredients:

  • fish sauce
  • chili
  • lime
  • mint leaves, cilantro
  • grilled beef
  • shallots
  • Lobo Nam Tok seasoning

California Here I come

Oh man! It has been forever since I have posted a blog. I feel like since the pandemic began I have been in some type of weird Alice in Wonderland series but with more violence. It’s been about nine months and things do not seem to be getting better. I don’t know what will happen but I do know that only I can start by making MY world a better place.

Lately, it feels as if everything has been getting to me and my job is the last thing on my mind. I had been working long hours and not spending much time with my family. I should say quality time with my family. I had disconnected from everyone and everything I enjoyed about life. It was now all about work and making achievements that other people expected you to make. So, when my sister-in-law asked me to come and help out with some things needing mending in California I took my chance.

The booking of the trip WAS spur of the moment, but I was need so I went. However, the need to get away had been sitting in the pit of my stomach for months. I was nervous. I hadn’t traveled since the pandemic began and wasn’t too sure of how things worked. I had seen to many drama on the news about passengers who say they were being treated badly by the airline. I like to take this drama with a grain if salt. Honestly, the flights went off without a hitch. It was strange seeing one of the busiest place in the world be so hauntingly quiet. There was definitely a different vibe while in travel, but my fellow passengers followed the rules and I was fortunate now to have to be a part of today’s travel dramas.

I had finally landed in San Francisco after a three hour lay over in San Diego. It wasn’t a bad experience at all. Some things never change though such as going through security, buying over priced airport food, and the butterfly in your stomach a cue your adventure is about to start.

I didn’t get to stay to long in California as we had another spur of the moment trip to Portland where my nephews lived. Oh boy, ROAD TRIP!!! Actually, I wasn’t too excited about the road trip as I am more of a, “are we there yet?”, kind of girl. On the flip side, I did enjoy going through the country side and seeing all the beautiful landscape along the way. My youngest brother had tricked my mom into going with us. They drove up from San Diego and for the first time since 2008 or maybe longer all six siblings were together again. What my visit made me realize is that I missed being with my siblings. I missed my writing and I missed having control over my life. During my visit my brothers and I spoke about starting a business. Why not? I felt I need to take my skills and use them to my advantage and create my own work life balance. I would use the skills of my younger relatives too.

I am so happy I took the chance and flew out to see my siblings. The time we have had together in this crazy year of 2020 has been invaluable. Even though we live far a part we have set up a group text just for whatever. The main thing is that we stay connected because we never know what tomorrow brings.

Take that first step forward and believe in yourself.

A little fusion going on here…

#budomfoodforthought

It feels like I am forever in between home or couch surfing at my children places. I feel I never have the time to grocery shop properly anymore. WhenI do I get the chance to shop I try to buy products that my husband can make. On one of my days off from work I had a look in my somewhat bare fridge. Sigh. I was hungry but what could I make with what I had. ( Me staring into the fridge until inspiration strikes)

Oh, wouldn’t we all love the be the food channel cooks? Making glorious dishes that everyone must eat or try making themselves. However, the reality is that we don’t always have the time or money to make those dishes we see on television. So, here we are making a dish with whatever we have in our kitchen. Standing alone some of the choices may seem a little “meh” or “um, no”.

Shrimp mixed with Jimmy Dean mild breakfast sausage and seasoned with laab seasoning packets.

Sitting in my fridge was some Jimmy Dean mild breakfast sausage. The milder seasoned the sausage, the better, as I used the Lobo Laab seasoning packet in the dish. Mixed everything together with some diced onions and green bell pepper. I put in a dash of fish sauce and viola! I created a tasty filling dish from whatever I had in the kitchen at the time. I did a little Asian fusion of an American breakfast product with some Thai seasoning.

Here’s what you need:

Don’t for get to start the rice cooking!

1 small onion 1 green bell pepper Mild sausage meat Lobo Laab seasoning packet lemon or lime 1 table spoon Fish sauce Cilantro 1/2 deveined shrimp Jasmine rice

  • Chopped shrimp into small pieces but not too small and also dice the onion and bell pepper.
  • Cook sausage, veggies, together in a slightly deep pan.
  • Once sausage is almost cooked add shrimp, seasoning packet, and fish sauce.
  • Once throughly cooked add fresh cut cilantro and lemon or lime juice to taste. adding extra chili is also optional.
Cast iron Skillet cooking.

If you try to make this dish please let me know how it turns out for you. I also had some sticky rice to eat with it the next day!

#foodrecipes #foodfusion #thaifood #laab #asiancuisine #asianfusion #asianfood

Food Bites

During this time I have had more time home than I usually do. Which meant that I had no reason to say I couldn’t cook a great hot dish more often. Lately I have been eating too much fast food or on-the-go, so the chance to actually sit down to eat my meal was looking better and better. I got down to basics and made some Philippine style adobo. Ahhhhh, yes, this meat driven dish is the favorite of many. Of course, don’t forget the rice.

Of course, we can’t leave out the Thai dishes like Laab (larb) or as my family likes to call it “hot meat”. This tangy spicy salad always hits the spot especially when paired with fresh cucumbers and sticky rice. I also like the Nam Tok style where it is a waterfall of sliced rare beef steak saturated in the spicy salty sour dish. This dish paired with clean white rice just sends your taste buds a howling! My family is split on which is better. I love both styles because the dish’s flavors always bring memories good times and fun conversations to mind.

Then I tried a couple of desserts. I was making boa loy, a sticky rice ball dumplings in a yummy sweetened coconut milk. It was only after I made all the dumplings that I figured out I had bought the wrong rice flour! (Remember girls & boys, always read the recipe ingredients throughly.) Argh, the annoyance of it. Of course, never fear because Budom always has a back up plan. (Well, most of the time I do.) I had some sweet potato that had been soaking and used that instead, it turned out very good. I also made some Biko, a filipino style sticky rice coconut dessert. However, that did turn out as expected so I will try again next time. I feel like I rushed it or missed a step. It still tasted like Biko but I can admit mine was not the best I ever had.

If any of you have a recipe you would like to share. I would love to try them out in my kitchen. Comment below on your favorite dishes you rarely get to cook or that you make most often. Until then fill that belly!

It’s Chile Verde in Here

So I bought some tomatillos because I have heard they make a good sauce. Except one thing, I know nothing about how to cook these pretty little vegetables? Fruit? Either way I wanted to make something different for dinner. I wanted to use my pork steaks and the tomatillos, but I needed a good recipe that would be simple to follow. I was lucky to find a great recipe on a wonderful site Isabel Eats . The about profile says Isabel is a first generation Mexican- American who grew up eating the Mexican dishes she shares with others. Well, Isabel I am giving it a try.

I had surfed the web for different recipes that involved cooking with tomatillos. According to several websites the tomatillos is a tart fruit similar to the gooseberry. The tomatillos is usually roasted first and then the skin peeled before use. Isabel’s chile verde looked appetizing and I decide to give the recipe a try . In the end the recipe was easy to follow and a great starter dish for novice chefs. This dish called for some serrano peppers and jalapeños to the dish, but whew, I am glad I didn’t put in both. The serrano peppers were spicier than I expected however the tartness tomatillos mixed seasoning creates a delicious flavored kick to the stewed pork. Until next time food-lovers unite.

Oatmilk the New Alternative?

Good morning food lovers! The other day I was shopping for groceries and notice that the store was featuring oatmilk in the dairy section. I had heard a lot about coffee shops including oatmilk as a choice for their beverages and I wanted to taste what all the fuss was about. The store had a dollar off coupon which made the price less than $3 for my quart of oatmilk so, why not?

Before I poured any oatmilk in my coffee I gave it a taste. The milk tasted very creamy and of course had the flavor of the familiar bowl of oats. The texture was quite thick and I didn’t think I would be using the milk in a bowl of cereal anytime soon. In all it was palatable and I proceeded to add it to my cup of coffee and the taste was delicious. Once in the coffee I did not taste the oatmeal flavor as much but the milk’s thick texture brought out the coffee flavors in my Kenya blend coffee from Starbucks. Are you an oatmilk lover?

HOW IS OATMILK MADE?

I read an article from Good Housekeeping about what we need to know about oatmilk. It is made in a similar way the Asians have been making coconut milk used in many of their drink and food recipes. Oats are soaked in water for some time then strained to get the liquid out. This simple recipe is also vegan friendly. Simple enough, but are there any benefits?

IS OATMILK GOOD FOR YOU?

We’ve all heard that oatmeal is good for us with it’s 100% whole grain goodness along with zero sugars and saturated fats. Oatmeal has been touted as a good way to improve your cholesterol levels, immunity, and gut health. Although at 90 to 120 calories per cup it might not be the thing for weight loss and carbs are high being around 15-20 grams per cup. In all I believe everything in moderation. I feel that oatmilk has plenty of benefits but it is not a one fits all.

I enjoyed the taste and I haven’t had many stomach issues since using it in place of dairy milks. Of the alternative milks oatmilk is becoming my favorite. I recommend to give it a try and see what you think about it. Below are some articles that tell a little more about oatmilk and how it can be used.

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/01/19/style/oat-milk-coffee-oatly

https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/theresatamkins/is-oat-milk-healthy-nutrition

Food Cures When a Cold Attacks

Food has always been central in my life living in an Asian family. With my mom being from Thailand and my father from the Philippines I always felt our family had the best of both worlds when it came to Asian cuisine. In Asian culture, food is looked at as more than sustenance but also as a cure for some ailment. One of my favorite comfort and healing foods is a rice porridge called Khao Tom or Jok (pronounced joke) but more commonly known by the Chinese name congee. Europeans are even familiar with this dish but it carries the name of gruel where they come from.

This past holiday I held off from being sick even though so many around me were dropping like flies to the cold and flu bug. I stayed strong but my body told me that was a lie as I soon fell prey to the sniffles, coughing, and fever which hit me like a truck speeding around a mountain corner. I took to bed but woke drained and hungry however my unsettled belly did not wish to do any heavy digesting. In comes my one of my favorite sick food that helps keep up my energy and feeling warm all over.

There are so many ways to make Khom Tom (which is the plainest version of the porridges) and every Asian country has its own version of it.  In the Philippines, it is called, lugaw. The Japanese call it Kayu, and in Vietnam it is cháo. So there is no right or wrong way to eat your rice porridge. In the end, no matter the name given to the dish the feeling of comfort and healing are the same. You make the dish yours by adding other yummy additions such as a fried or soft boiled egg, meats, vegetables, or sauces that make you feel like you have a taste of home.

Let me know below what your favorite go-to food is when you are sick. This is just one of the dishes I go to when sick. I have several others but that is for another story.

Rice_Porridge_byBudom

I love to add an egg and some chicken to my rice porridge. It always takes me back to my childhood when my mom made it for me when I was sick.

Remember to sign up to get the most recent blog notifications. You can also follow me on Instagram on @budom and like my, Facebook pages Brouhaha Access and Budom for more information on my food loves, travel adventures, and fun articles. Give me a thumbs up if you liked this article. Below are some links for making rice porridge on your own. Let me know how it turns out.

Fearless Eating

Hot-Thai-Kitchen

Food and Wine

Supernatural or Madness: The Living and the Dead.

I found this show on the PBS channel and my love of the supernatural would not let me pass up the chance to see how supernatural the storyline might be. Let me clarify, while I am intrigued by the paranormal, I don’t enjoy cheap parlor tricks or weird diversion which does not help in creating the supernatural effect in a film. The Living and the Dead did a great job and keeping me at the edge of my seat whose story is told in six episodes.

Read More

Riding Out Hurricane Harvey

The news of Harvey forming in the Gulf of Mexico already had my heart beating faster inside my chest. Flashes of memories from the Memorial day floods ran through my mind and I felt like the nightmare was starting all over again. After a week of watching the storm form from a tropical storm to a full blown hurricane, I knew my nightmare would be coming true. It was disheartening but at least this time we were aware of this high possibility of flooding. Last time our rental house flooded all of the family’s cars were all totaled and it took much of our savings to get new vehicles. This time we made sure to move the vehicles to higher ground and we moved as much of our things to the second floor.

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Bayou was rising and we knew flooding was inevitable.

Maybe many of you have questions such as, why did we not move? Why did we not evacuate? and so on and so on. It can seem like things could have been done better while we are on the outside looking into the situation. However, this is one of those situations while it’s easy to make judgments the answers are not always clear. I grew up in Florida and other tropical islands and never have I been as affected as I have been with the current disaster. It was scary and watching the water rise into my house was so upsetting but I had to put on my big girl panties and deal with protecting my family. As many have told me since the floods that material things can be replaced but lives cannot. Yes, they are right, but it’s so hard to see all you have worked for gone in minutes.

IMG_20170827_150644.jpg

IMG_20170827_090816.jpg The house flooded higher than last time. The water was higher and too deep for me to be walking around in since I am a shorty.

Now the flood waters have cleared and the everything that was floating around the house has settled on the ground wherever it was when the water started receding back into the bayou and down the heavily affected drainage system. The day is so sunny and bright it’s is hard to imagine that this storm left thousands homeless and at least 70 people dead in its wake. I didn’t cry at all during the storm nor when I saw the destruction of my home and belongings, only when my boss came to talk to me about the floods did I cry. My husband to intent on making sure we had enough supplies and a place to stay after the floods forgot to take his own personal belongings upstairs. Growing up poor the loss of his personal belongings and memories from his times in the military bothers him far more than anyone else in the family.

I am telling my story in hopes that others affected can know that they are not alone and I also want to take the time to thank all the people in my life who have supported me and my family through this emotional and psychological trying period in our lives. I hope that if you can’t reach out and help monetarily that as a friend you will reach out and recognize everyone needs support in many different ways. Lastly, a friend of mine decided that we needed to get out of our current home and we agreed. So, my friend started a GoFundMe account. The people who have either donated or shared my fund with others who have donated I can never thank enough. It gives us hope that there are people out there who will help if they are able. So in an unusual stance, I am asking my readers and followers for help spreading the word of my fund account. I realize not everyone will want to share it. Why should you help me when others are in more need? Well, help those in more need first, but I do hope you keep me and my family in mind. Please, #Share my GoFundMe and I thank you in advance for your time in doing so.

https://www.gofundme.com/busanee-relief-fund

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Mold growth day 2!

#hurrianerelief #charities #GoFundMe #floods #HoustonStrong 

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This neighbor had to find shelter in their attic.

 

 

Houston Adventures: A “Wicked” Time at the Theatre

Hello, Brouhaha fans! It has been a while since my last adventure, and my penchant for procrastinating never helps. It has been a busy year for me but there is always time for a little pleasure. After all, we have to remember that all work and no play make @Budom a dull girl.

Houston is a versatile and diverse city filled with many opportunities not just for work but for entertainment. Although it is a long drive from the lights of Broadway in New York, it doesn’t mean that Broadway can’t come to us. This year for my birthday a lovely friend treated me to a night at the theater. Along with my daughter and her friend, the four of us enjoyed a special night watching the play, Wicked. I was so excited and the bonus was that we were seated in balcony box seating!  The stage was so close I felt like I could reach out and touch Elphaba. wicked-playbill

The play was well written and followed pretty close to the books written by author Gregory Maguire.  While reading the books would give more insight to the characters we all know that it won’t happen in a play.

When I saw original Wizard of Oz on television as a youngster, I always wondered if there was some back story for the witches. I have always been fascinated by witches and their magical lives. So, when Maguire’s stories hit bookshelves I devoured them like manna from heaven. The perceptions that Maguire’s books gave me were not what I expected to see. Elphaba the Wicked Witch of the West was the good guy (or girl) standing on her soapbox while nursing insecurities about herself, Glenda the so-called good witch, was actually an entitled self-absorbed brat, who later became more likable but not brave enough to follow her own path. In all reality, Dorothy was just an unexpected accident to the land of Oz. Dorothy was a literally a lost little girl who was used by the Wizard of Oz, as was everyone else in the story. The Wizard’s character was depicted most like L. Frank Baum’s version.  He is still the ever glorified con man he was in the real world. I never expected to like Elphaba and agree with her fight, and I didn’t expect to want to smack some sense into Glenda.

orchestra-playbill

The Hobby Center stage brought all the characters to life. The actors and actresses portrayed the characters to a tee. Elphaba’s sister Nessa Rose’s (aka the Wicked Witch of the East) character was well played balancing her sweetness and obsession to be normal as well as loved. While she is mentioned in the book I feel the play really told her story better. Her story gave fans a look at how still waters can run deep. Now I must also give credit to the orchestra. The music emanating from the pit wove an even more magical feel into the story. It was a lovely time and a wonderful theater experience. I will definitely do it again. Until then Brouhaha Fans “Defy Gravity”.

 

Houston Adventures: Friday 13th equals Cheap Tattoos

Located in Montrose, an older residential Houston neighborhood.

Located in Montrose, an older residential Houston neighborhood.

Back in my adolescent years, I grew up watching the slasher flick Friday the 13th. Halloween back in my day would be bombarded with bloody hockey masks on young boys pretending to be Jason, the insane killer in the movie. My grandmother, a devout, and practicing Catholic, even had advice on how to steer your day “curse free” on Friday the 13th. After living through many Fridays associated with the ominous number thirteen, and getting through most without much ado, I realized that Friday the 13th wasn’t as bad as most would like you to think.

Hold on folks as we fast-forward to the present where I learned something new about Friday the 13th. Apparently, Friday the 13th was not as unlucky as one would like you to think because Friday the 13th equaled cheap tattoos. yeah, I know I’m late on the tattoo train but hey, better late than never, right? Since I am fairly new to the Houston area I wasn’t sure where to go. Honestly, I did have all kinds of flesh-eating bacteria stories running through my head at the mention of a cheap tattoo. So, a couple of good friends and Houstonians took me to the hot spot for tattoos any time. Check out the decor of 713 Tattoo Parlour & Body Piercing.

The place so became crowded with people of all ages getting their Friday 13th tattoos. Set in an eclectic and older part of #Houston called #Montrose  which, is a nightlife  hot spot but there are many cafes, restaurants, and small boutiques to explore. Montrose is also where all the hip people hang out. If you’re ever in Houston check out the area there is plenty to experience especially if you’re on a budget. have you ever gotten a #Fridaythe13th #tattoo? Hit me up and share some photos while you’re at it.

You can also hit me up on Twitter: @budom #brouhahaaccess and my Facebook page. I look forward to hearing from the Brouhahas.

Houston Adventures: It all started when…

 

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Houston football team: The Texans.

 

It has been too long since my fingers have told the stories of my recent #adventures. Life can have many distractions, and time being a fickle creature can slip away before we even realize it. In my last travel series The Journey Home, I had found myself in the middle of Texas. The part of Texas I ended up in was the Texas one might imagine it Texas to be. One could find small rolling hills and lovely Bluebells that encompassed ranches and empty fields stretching farther than the eye could see. Of course, we did not live too far from the big city of Austin where a person could enjoy Texas city life at its finest.

Fast forward into the future and I no longer dwell in the country, but I now find myself navigating through the streets of Texas’ largest city, Houston. While I enjoy the country life, I am also enjoying my time in a large city. It has been a long time since my family, and I have lived in a city so large that a short trip could turn into an unexpectedly long trip.

I must admit it has taken some getting used to, and there have been some up and downs. I took a long break from writing but my fingers can no longer stay still, and I am back, and I am ready to share a new series with you. I hope you will enjoy and share some of your thoughts on my adventures. I look forward to being back with my brouhaha fans. Remember, you can always keep up with my on my Twitter (@budom) and other social media platforms such as Instagram, Stumbleupon, Facebook, Google+, and coming soon, Snapchat! Check out my contact page for my social media links for an easy connect. See ya’ll around.

#Texas #Houston #adventures

 

The Fall Of The Berlin Wall Was Not Everyone’s Cup of Tea

© 2014 Budom@brouhaha-aacess.

Although Dresden is almost 2 hours from Berlin Dresden houses some Industrial Era museums. This photo was taken while strolling through Dresden’s Christmas Market.

I am ashamed to say that in all my years of living in Germany I never went to Berlin and visited the sight of the Berlin wall. It is one of the things I kick myself for not doing while I had the chance. Why didn’t I take the time to check out one of the most historical landmarks in the world? The closest I ever came to Berlin was when I went to Dresden. Dresden is about 187 kilometers (116 miles) or about a two-hour drive from Berlin. Now today is the 25th anniversary of the wall coming down and I drawn to a conversation I had about it with a German friend.

At one time Berlin was split in two, East and West. I’m not going to get into the whole history because there are plenty news article or books you can get it from. However, I’ll just summarize. The wall was built, and guards walked the border making sure that East siders did not try to head over to West where freedom lay. Finally the power of the people, as well as East Berlin’s recognition that their government system was not working as planned, opened the doors for Germans to leave if that’s what they wanted. Many stories tell of how people fled to freedom, and to families and loved one separated on the West side. But for some freedom is not just about being free but being free to make your own choices.

Not everyone left East Berlin once the walls came down. While living in Germany, I met a friend whose grandmother still lived in what was once East Berlin. When the time came to leave and be with her family on the West side, she opted to stay. Many might think why would she want to stay when she could be free? It’s easy to assume that everyone would want to leave a place that had oppressed them for many years. But that assumption would be wrong. Regardless of how we might feel or think about those who stayed when it came down to it this was their home. For some, it was the only home they ever knew.

For my friend’s grandmother, it was a life she had lived for many years. She was used to the separation of her family, but the new independence was too much for her to take in. Besides she had a simple life in East Berlin, and that’s how she wished to keep it. Now that the borders were open, and the wall that symbolized Germany’s darker history in the world was down she could visit her family whenever she wanted, or her family could visit her. I asked my friend if her grandmother was glad the wall was down. My friend replied that although her Grandmother was glad she still felt more comfortable where she lived. That’s understandable. There are many people in America who have never even left the city or state they were born and raised in, and they have always had the freedom to do so.

So the fall Berlin Wall is more than just a symbol for freedom it is a symbol of choice, and the wall coming down represents the right to make that choice. It gave many the opportunity to follow what their hearts desired, whether that is being able to leave or just making the choice to stay in the only home you’ve ever known.

Related Stories:

CLAMOR IN THE EAST; EAST GERMANY OPENS FRONTIER TO THE WEST FOR MIGRATION OR TRAVEL; THOUSANDS CROSS
Tom Brokaw On Reporting The Fall of The Berlin Wall
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