Posted by: omikun | April 29, 2009

Beef Noodle Soup

Cooked some soup today. Yum yum. Only took about 30minutes, that’s including taking pictures and selling stuff on craigslist.

Anyway, you’re going to need noodles and seasme oil, as shown below. It’s nicer to have a little pitcher for the oil, since you don’t need a lot and it’s easier to pour a small amount with the pitcher.

oilnoodles, get the wide kind if you can!

It’s medium as shown, but it’s so much easier to cook/eat if you get wide. I usually get about this much for one person:

img_2458Cut up a stalk of green onion and half a roma tomatoes. Add seasame oil and soy sauce to the bowl (you just need enough to cover the noodles with it).

img_2456

Cut up your veggie, in my case bak choy like so.

img_2462

You should have your beef marinated already:

img_2461

Boil your noodles for 5 min (don’t put it in until the pot boils).

img_2460

Take the noodles out and mix it in your bowl! If you don’t mix it, it’ll just be sticky.

Empty the water, refill it with as much water as you want in your soup, boil it, add your meat. Add a bit of soy sauce if the water isn’t dark enough. It’ll be done in a bit. Take out the meat, add your veggie. Turn off the heat within 1 minute and dump it all in soup and all into your bowl:

yum

So your ingredients per serving are:
1-2 baby bok choy
half a roma tomato
a quarter of a pound of beef/chicken/pork
soy sauce, seasame oil,

Instructions for cooking noodles/meat in parallel:

  1. Fill up 2 pots of water, one to cook noodles and the other for the soup. Heat up the pot for the noodles.
  2. Cut up your green onion, tomatoes and add to your bowl with seasame oil and soy sauce.
  3. Once the pot for the noodles boil, add your noodles and set the timer for 5 min. (add an egg here to if you want).
  4. Heat up the other pot.
  5. Cut/peel your veggie
  6. Transfer noodles to bowl (set another timer for 5 min for the egg). Mix the noodles with the sauces.
  7. Add meat to second pot when it boils.
  8. Take out meat when it’s done. Add in veggie.
  9. Pour soup and veggie into your bowl.
  10. Your optional egg should be done around now. Put it in cold water for a bit and peel the shell.
  11. You’re done!
Posted by: omikun | April 27, 2009

Sweet and Sour for newbs

Instructions are rather clearly marked on the packet, but in case you are still afraid of how to go about it and need some visual confirmation that you haven’t botched the whole meal on step one, I shall document my sweet n sour cooking from a packet:

You’ll need:SweetnSour packet

It has instructions and ingredients list on the back:

Ingredients listSo you cut up the meat and add corn starch + water to it:

img_2389Then you add in enough soy sauce to make it all chocolatey brown. And let it sit while you prepare the rest of your ingredients. (lots of chopping!)

I bought 2lbs of boneless skinless chicken thigh instead of pork cause I couldn’t find any cheap ones (or rather, forgot to look). Since the thing called for 1.5 lbs, I saved the rest for my tomato beef noodle soup (that I almost always use chicken thigh with). Cut them, put them in a little plastic ziplock and pour some soy sauce to marinate them overnight. Will cook them tomorrow!

This is what it looks like after you cut all the veggie as per instructed by the sauce packet. I used a bit more carrots and bell peppers than instructed cause… I had more.

veggiI used 3 carrots, sliced diagonally, make sure you peel them first!

You’ll have to cut all the seeds out of the bell peppers, cause they’re spicy:

Time to cook the meat! Just pour some oil on the pan, make sure you have the whole pan covered in oil. Heat it on high, wait until if you sprinkle it with some water it’ll pop, then throw your meat on it. Cook one side for about 2-3 min, or when you really start smelling some charred goodness, flip them over and over until it’s mostly cooked. Should

look like this at the end:Yum

Almost want to give up and just eat that! But don’t give into the temptation! The final thing is so worth it!

So pour some more oil on the  pan, heat it back up. You don’t need it as hot as with the meat, since veggie doesn’t need as high heat to cook. Cook it on low after you have it heat up, and make sure to stir it every few minutes. Cover the lid and let it cook for a bit. Here’s what it should look like at the end:

Veggi all done!

Prepare your sauce mixture as per instruction:

SauceMix it well but if there are clumps of ketchup or whatever, don’t worry about it. Doesn’t seem to matter in the end.

Now add your meat into the veggie, and add this mixture into it. Let it simmer.

Simmer~~

Once it starts to boil, turn it off, add your thing of pine apples from a can such as this:

img_2383

And then serve with rice! Simple! this is actually pretty much the most complicated meals I ever cook. Probably took about an hour total with some pacing back and forth/zoning out and such. Should feed you for 2-3 days.

Enjoy!

Don!

Posted by: omikun | April 26, 2009

How to cook on the cheap [Azn/Canto way]

A good friend of mine is in need to cook on the cheap to subsist on his meager grad student stipend, so this is my contribution to return his balance to the black. This is for anyone who is not familiar with cooking at all or have never cooked beyond ramen + fried eggs (yum!). I wouldn’t go so far as to say ‘written for engineers, by an engineer’ but it is practical and tasty without any sort of thrill to it…

I only really learned how to cook with soy sauce, so it’s basically a very generic canto way of cooking but it should be pretty easy to get started and there aren’t many ingredients to get. It should be more than enough variety once you add in pastas, burritos, etc to your weekly diet.

Here are a few styles I know:

Stirfried meat + veggi combo servied over rice (long grain jasmine, don’t get anything else, even if it’s a bit more expensive. Rice averages out to just a few cents per bowl if you buy them @ ~$20 for 25lbs)

Ingredients:
soy sauce, oyster sauce, oil, soy paste
salt, sugar
garlic (get a couple of cloves, they last for 3-4 weeks)
ginger (just a small piece is fine, this is optional but it makes napa cabage smell and taste extra awesome)
meat (anything cheap, really. Becareful with the beef, some of them have lots of tendons so it’ll end up chewy. I like to get the center cut serloin pork chops and boneless skinless chicken thighs. Aim to spend no more than $3.99 a pound. You can find meat on sale for $2-3/lb and the chicken thighs are generally $2-2.50/lb. Make sure you get the boneless skinless ones!) 
veggi (green beans, brocolli, napa cabage, regular cabage, bok choi, yu choy [油菜], ong choy [空心菜], CUCUMBERS*)

*I love cucumbers in this sort of dish :D

Instructions:

  1. Cut your meat to bite sizes, either slice or chunks. 
  2. Add soy sauce to taste, I just pour it down until they’re pretty dark. I would say about 4 tablespoon for 2 lbs of meat, probably more. If not enough, add some salt.
  3. Let it sit for 30 min. If you’re impatient or just hungry, wait like 5 min. If you’re really hungry, you can skip this step.
  4. Cut the veggie. 
  5. Peel the garlic and cut them into little slices. I like to use 1/3rd or 1/2 of a clove depending on how much meat.
  6. Get a frying pan (12″ and up are good). Add a coat of oil, heat on high.
  7. [Optional: add 2 spoons of sugar to the oil right as you heat, let it melt. This’ll give your meat a really yummy sweet/salty taste.]
  8. Sprinkle some water on it every once in a while to see if it’s hot enough (the water should pop if it’s hot enough).
  9. Add garlic and hear them pop! Smell the aroma, yum~ Let it cook for about 5 sec before dumping your meat on it.
  10. Spread the meat out and let it cook for 1-2min without flipping them, depending on how thick you cut your meat.
  11. Lower the heat to medium and flip the meat, they should be golden brown now. If you are cooking beef, turn off stove right about now. You’ll get to cook it a bit more later. If you are not cooking beef, cook until they aren’t bleeding.
  12. Remove the meat to a container.
  13. Add a bit more oil if it’s not enough. Add some more garlic if you have any. Add veggie.
  14. Becareful with overcooking leafy veggi, test if they are done by taking a bite out of them every few minutes. For green beans, you gotta cook them for 10min on medium first, they take a while. For cucumbers, cook for a really, really long time. You want them to be transparent to really bring out the taste :D
  15. Add some salt and stir. (add soy paste with green beans, or a little bit of oyster sauce with napa)
  16. Add the rest of your meat back in. Stir a bit. You have a little chance to cook your meat more here, but the veggie is probably done already, so don’t cook for too long.
  17. [optional: in a bowl, add some cornstarch, water, and soy sauce. Mix well and then add it to your pan. Heat on high and wait until the mixture bubbles all the way through. If your mixture was about a quarter cup, you’ll get this nice meat broth you can eat with your rice. If your mixture was more, it’ll taste like soy sauce and not the meat]
  18. Eat with rice. Done!

That seems like a lot, so in summary:

  1. Cut garlic
  2. Cut meat
  3. Cut veggie,
  4. Heat up oil
  5. Add garlic, then meat, cook to brown.
  6. Take out meat, add veggi, cook till done.
  7. Add meat back in, stir a bit.
  8. Eat with rice.

Tips on preparation/cooking:
Slices is easier to cook and less likely it’ll be tough (since you can cook them fast!). Chunks are good for when you’re lazy and you’re cooking really tender cuts or chicken thigh (it’s hard to over cook the chicken thigh to make them tough). 

Cut the meat to bite size slices against the grain! You should see lines running across your pork/beef, make sure you cut perpendicular to them to make sure the meat is easy to chew. Slices I cook about 2 lbs at a time. That feeds me for about 2 days, maybe less if you eat less rice with it.

[Optional: in a small bowl add a teaspoon or two of corn starch and a bit of water and stir it into a gooey soup mixture and pour it over the meat in a bowl, this will allow them to absorb more soy sauce and give it a better taste] 

[Optional2: for tough beef, mix a teaspoon of baking powder/soda into the meat, and let it sit for a few minutes, this will tenderize it]

For napa, tear each leaf, wash them, then cut them into inch long strips. For cabbages, just cut them into strips after washing the outside, and tearing out the first few layers cause they’re really dirty. For green beans (frozen, you don’t have to do anything!). For brocolli, cut them to bite sizes pieces after washing. For bok choi tear the leaves and wash, then cut into 3-4 inch strips unless they’re baby boc choy, in which case don’t bother cutting. Just wash ong choy and I like yu choy uncut or cut them in the middle after washing (the flowers are edible).

Chicken! (drumsticks, wings)

Ingredients:
oil, salt sugar
soy sauce, soy paste
chicken
garlic
veggie of your choice

Steps

  1. Cut your chicken at the joints, cut off any fat or skin you don’t like. Poke a hole at each piece with your knife (speeds up the cooking process)
  2. Cut garlic to slices.
  3. Heat up oil on high,
  4. Add garlic,
  5. Add chicken, cook at medium high, cover your pan. Check at 3min intervals. Flip when necessary.
  6. Cook until when you take the chicken out and cut it open and no blood spills out.
  7. Cook your veggie of choice and eat with rice! Yum!

Tomatoes and Eggs! Or Onion and eggs!

Ingredients:
oil, salt, sugar
tomatoes,
eggs
onions

Steps

  1. crack some eggs on to a bowl, stir it well.
  2. Dice tomatoes (at a ratio of about 1 to 1.2x # of small tomatoes (roma) to # eggs)
  3. add oil to pan, heat on high
  4. When it’s really hot, pour eggs in and cook it till it’s all congealed (shouldn’t take more than a minute max)
  5. Take the eggs out and put tomatoes in (you could have heated up some garlic before hand, it enhances the taste)
  6. Cook it for a while, maybe 10min max. Add salt and sugar to taste. Tip here is to add enough sugar until it’s not sour anymore (might be a few spoon full), then add salt until it’s equally sweet and salty for perfection.
  7. Add eggs back in, mix. You’re done!
  8. If you’re cooking onions instead…. just cook it instead of tomatoes. No special instructions for onions. They’re pretty straight forward.

Tomato Beef Noodles!

This is my new favorite. My grandparents make this for breakfast almost everyday and I do too now :D

Ingredients (for 1 serving):
soy sauce, seasame oil
1/2 tomatoe
beef (1 serving)
wide, flat noodles
1-2 stalks green onion
2-4 baby bak choy
1 egg 

Steps:

  1.  You’ll need to cut and marinate the beef the night before for max taste.
  2. Heat up water to cook the noodles (6 cups of water should do)
  3. Cut up your green onion in to slanted slices, and your half a tomato into wedges. Put them into your big bowl.
  4. Add 2 teaspoons of soy sauce and 1 teaspoon of seasame oil (to prevent the noodles from sticking and adds an extra taste to it)
  5. When the water is boiling, add your noodle (as much as you like!) Add your egg here too (hard boil it with the noodles)
  6. Set the timer for 5 min for the noodle, 10min for the egg. Or just set the timer for 5min again when it rings the first time.
  7. Take our the noodle with chopstick or slotted spoon and place it in your prepared bowl.
  8. Mix the noodles up with your stuff so it doesn’t stick.
  9. Tear the leaves of your baby bok choy apart, clearn them. No need to cut.
  10. Take out the egg when time is up and put it in a bowl of cold water.
  11. Dump the water and add enough new water for your soup. Heat it up on high.
  12. Put your beef in when it boils. If the water is still clear once you stir the beef a bit, add a dash or two more of soy sauce. Cook for about 10-20 sec if that. Take the beef out with chopstick or something and put it in your bowl.
  13. Cook your bak choy. It takes about 30 sec if you kept the water boiling. Dump it all in your bowl.
  14. Peel your egg and put it in the bowl.
  15. Enjoy! Awesome breakfast in 20min if you have two pots and can cook the noodle/beef in tandum!
Posted by: omikun | April 7, 2009

Custom Mech 3D mockup

Spent all day working on this. First time I rigged up the legs Max crashed on me T_T Otherwise the legs would look a bit better. This is just for lighting and perspective reference. It should make the rest of the painting easier… although it did take a freaking day….

Vray rocks... for studio lighting

Vray rocks... for studio lighting

Posted by: omikun | April 6, 2009

Commission painting… WIP

Built a 3D model of the city, used it for the two main buildings and their reflections. Rest of the backdrop are still just raw photos.

Working on the mech now… nooo idea how to work realism into that one. Might have to build a model for it too…

Chugging~~~

Chugging~~~

Any C&C? I need some texture brushes…

Posted by: omikun | March 24, 2009

Last Line of Defense [Finished]

20090317_taiidani_interceptor_hangar5_smallLarger Version here

Posted by: omikun | March 18, 2009

Last Chance

In the Hangar

In the Hangar

Taiidani Interceptor scrambling out as the Kushan forces arrives at Hiigaran at long last. Higher res version at dA.

Earlier drafts here and here.

Here’s the final version before I added all the warmth, since that might be a more fitting atmosphere.

 

Before messing with filters...

Before messing with filters...

Posted by: omikun | March 16, 2009

New paintings

 

Random mech

Random mech

 Kind of abused the color dodge tool… man, I need to get a color sense…

 

Jorge, silly portrait

Jorge, silly portrait

For the full tutorial, visit my dA account.

Posted by: omikun | February 27, 2009

LCD Fun

So apparently the HD77480 LCD’s come with both european and katakana text in its room. I wish there was a faster way of coding in katakana then print each character as (char)198 or something like that. Perhaps a big macro or something? Anyway I thought this is really cool. Now I can fulfill my dream of making a Japanese clock.

Sugoi!!

tsu - go - i~~

I’m using my seeduino, a really cheap LCD from ebay, and some solderless breadboard jumper cable wires (beware though, these jumper wires are pretty thick at the end but doesn’t really give to much trouble when used on a breadboard).

I also got the OneWire thermometers (Dallas DS18B20) working as well:

 

Two sensors on one wire!

Two sensors on one wire!

Now I just need the peltier and I’ll have practically all the parts for my chilly alarm project!

Posted by: omikun | February 24, 2009

Finally

I finally got around to painting… something. It really isn’t much more than my usual but a lot less refined and a lot more random textures + color dodge.

 

You would have never guessed it, but there's a girl in side...

You would have never guessed it, but there's a girl in side...

I’m looking at Craig Mullins’ stuff now, wondering how do I get any closer to such awesome.

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