I am not going to lie.  I LOVE eating out.  Trying new foods, new wines, new places.  If we won the lottery I wouldn’t mind eating out every Friday and Saturday night.  But, I have to be realistic.  Eating out right now is just now in our budget, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t make take out food just as good, if not better, than spending the money on picking it up at your local take out place.

Tony and I both love the salad dressing that comes on the salad at Benihana.   When the kids were little we used to take them to Benihana, they loved the show the cooks put on, but after spending so much money, we realized they both only liked the shrimp dish.  Neither one ate the soup, salad, veggies, etc.  So we quickly made the decision after that to make the kids shrimp at home and skip all the sides that they didn’t like.  But Tony and I love that simple salad.  I guessed that it had radishes in it, but Tony found a copycat recipe that I followed to the T, but it was missing something.  It didn’t taste quite right – Tony suggested adding in carrots, and that did the trick.

Benihana Salad Dressing

  • 1/2 cup peanut oil
  • 1/3 cup rice vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh ginger
  • 2 tablespoons minced celery
  • 2 tablespoons ketchup
  • 4 teaspoons soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 carrots, chopped

Throw everything into the food processor and pulse.  It will be slightly chunky but that’s okay.  It’s tangy, surprisingly light, and you only need a little bit to coat the salad.  Sorry I don’t have a better picture, but it was already dark and this was the one and only picture of the salad.

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But the star of the show was the potstickers!   I adapted Damn Delicious’s recipe – I left out the onions, obviously, used button mushrooms instead of shitake mushrooms, and sadly left out the sriracha so Tony would like them.  I also added a teaspoon of fish sauce.  If you haven’t tried it yet, do it – I was afraid of it for the longest time – I don’t like fish so why the hell would I put fish sauce on my food!  But it’s a salty umami flavor that really adds a lot to a dish.


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That picture was taken in my fluorescent kitchen.  Yesterday I was able to take some pics in natural light – much better!  I love the crispiness of the bottom of the wonton, but the top is still chewy.  I ended up adding sriracha to this dipping sauce and I got the kick of heat that I thought was missing in the actual wonton.

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Tony gave this dinner two big thumbs up, and that makes me happy.  He normally doesn’t like most of the food that I make, so to make him happy with my food is just icing on the cake. Open-mouthed smile

I feel that my knee is back to 100%, and that means back to the gym.  September was kind of a blur exercise wise, and I want to get back on track.  I don’t want to fall into the “it’s the holidays!” trap and just eat like shit for three months.  I haven’t weighed in for a while, so it was time to suck it up and see where I am at.

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Well, I have to say I thought that number was going to be a lot worse!  But I am going to take a positive spin on it – I am only 12.6 pounds away from the 150s! Open-mouthed smile

Alright, time to get this show on the road – make it a great day!