Video #7 – Our Pantry & Asian Nacho’s

Our first pantry fit into a shoe box. Really, it did. Twelve years ago, our belongings consisted of a beat up twin-size futon mattress as a bed, the futon frame (used as a bookshelf), an old, unfinished desk from Todd’s youth, our precious REI outdoor gear, a bearded dragon lizard and a small box full of cooking tools that we anxiously moved into our new apartment home of 800 square feet. Although we only took possession of 400 square feet of the small apartment, the other half belonged to our gracious roommates who generously furnished the communal areas of the apartment with their TV, their couch, their dining room table and their better quality kitchen ware. Although we pretty much mooched off of their nice furniture, we tried to make up for our lack of furnishings in other ways. Our contribution to making this tight apartment of 4 occupants more cozy and comfortable was the little shoe box of spices and a love of cooking. When the roomies had parties, we took over the kitchen to feed every poor, hungry and mid-term stressed college students that passed through our apartment doors. We created some wickedly good dishes with just 5 pantry essentials: butter, kosher salt, ground black pepper, soy sauce and fish sauce.

Those cramped apartment and shoebox pantry days are long gone. We’ve progressively moved to bigger spaces and gained extra kitchen cabinet space that don’t have to be shared with any more roommates! Hence, our pantry has expanded over the years with the help of better paying jobs, two self-remodeled kitchens (pull out the crow bar and hammer!) and a fascination of spices, oils, salts and anything else that helps tickle our taste buds beyond our comfort zone. Now our pantry has grown beyond a shoe box and fills much of our current kitchen with colors and aromas reminiscent of cuisines from around the world. Every time we think we’re well stocked with goods, there’s a new ingredient that we read or hear about that gets our radar buzzing again. How many do we actually have? Honestly, we’re afraid to even count. Between our combined ethnic heritages spanning from Germany, Holland, Ireland, Vietnam and China and our interests in world cuisines, we’re pretty much adding to our pantry faster than we can count. Our recent addiction of collecting spices includes those from India (we finally got asfoetida & amchur powder!) and peppercorns (kili and tasmanian bush peppers). Once we feel satisfied with gaining knowledge and comfort with using these spices for cooking and understanding their uses in their native cuisines, we’ll be scouring the world’s cuisine once again in search of more flavor and food products.

It’s our turn to submit our pantry to Lydia’s monthly “Other People’s Pantry” event. Over at her delicious blog, The Perfect Pantry, she shares members of her pantry family and highlights recipes and informative facts about these ingredients and specialty food products. She shares a wealth of information, drooling dishes and breathes new life to ingredients that we might already have and teases us with a new, unique spice that creates a yearning for us to try. We can’t seem to keep up with her!

Aside from the photographs, it was very hard for us to decide how or even if we were going to create a video for this event. We changed our mind a gazillion times. Do PEOPLE really want to see what’s in our pantry?Do WE want to show people what’s really in our pantry? The thought of boring everyone to death (oh look, more noodles! *big yawn*) or the thought of exposing our kitchen cabinets to everyone (no pre-cleaning) was embarrassing and possibly a bad publicity move for our blog (well, we’ve never made more than 23 cents off of blog adds anyways, hence, no more blog adds). Since we don’t depend on our blog for income, nor have we ever had a problem of making fun of ourselves, what did we have to lose? Nada, none, zilch.

So we turned on the video camera, put away our dirty dishes and here is what we came up with…

Video #7 – Todd & Diane’s Pantry

Asian Nacho’s & Our Pantry by White On Rice Couple from White On Rice Couple on Vimeo.


Shrimp & Won Ton Chip Asian Nacho's Recipe

Yield: Serves 2

Total Time: 10 Minutes


  • Shrimp Chips or Wonton wrapper (cut diagonally into four triangle sections)
  • 1/2 pound ground pork, beef, chicken or turkey
  • 1/4 cup chopped shallots or onions
  • 2 cloves crushed or finely minced garlic
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons of fish or soy sauce
  • lots of freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • diced tomatoes, green onions, avocado, cheese (optional toppings)


  1. Heat oil and slowly fry shrimp or wonton chips till brown or puffy. Blot on paper towel.
  2. Heat pan and saute shallots and garlic till crispy and fragrant. Add meat or tofu and cook till brown.
  3. Add fish or soy sauce and black pepper.
  4. Arrange chips on plate and top of meat and your choice of toppings.
Recipe Source:

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Recipe Note for Salt: All recipes containing salt are based on kosher or sea salt amounts, not table salt. If using table salt, reduce the amount used to taste.

Crunch! Crunch!


And More Crunch!

{ 54 comments… read them below or add one }
  1. Evelyn Stewart

    I just found your blog. You two are so cute. You could open your own small store with the variety of stuff you have. Aussie Bush Pepper? Fantastic!

  2. annie

    Oh my goodness spacious! Your kitchen is about the size of my entire apartment. That’s not a pantry, it’s paradise.

  3. canarygirl

    Oh how fun! I love seeing what other people have hiding in their pantries! Your videos are so fun and entertaining, too. 😀 Shrimp chips rule, btw.

  4. FlaNBoyant Eats

    yeah i want ur kitchen. Diane, would you like to trade for a pair of pumps?? I didn’t see you wearing any in there!! what’s up with that!!?!?! oh and your baking cupboard scared me! lol. i’ll stick to sauces and spices all day long, thank you!

    great vid.

  5. Nan

    Growing up I was told Juniper berries were poisonous! I have some black salt, smells like rotten eggs, right? I used it once, in an Indian rice dish and it tastes much better than it smells – but go easy with it! I love your pull out shelves – and your kitchen – and how your dogs came running when you started to cook! I have some rice paper stationary…but I guess it’s not edible….great video!

  6. Susan from Food Blogga

    I think take 3 was my favorite. You guys are adorable together.

  7. bee and jai

    what a splendid tour around your kitchen. beautiful people, will you adopt us? we’ll do the dishes. an e-mail on how to use black salt coming your way.

  8. maybelles mom

    Glad to hear you got Asofoetida and black salt. As you have already hear, black salt is good for chaat. (I make a chaat potato salad that I have a recipe for at my place.

    But, my grandmother also put it in spicy lime-aid and masala tea. I have been known to add it to bloody marys.

  9. Lori

    Great idea, I love shrimp chips!!

  10. Rosie

    You guys are soooo amazing I always enjoy my visits here!! Those Asian nachos look yummy too 😀

    Rosie x

  11. Rebecca

    Oh I just love it! ok, Todd is preaching to the choir-I’m a lover of bad puns, too. Wonderful tour, really fun!

  12. matt wright

    awesome stuff guys – great looking kitchen too. Your pantry is completely stuffed. Crazy.

  13. Sheltie Girl

    Asian nachos…very cool recipe.

    I don’t think I could share my kitchen on a video yet…it is still under construction. Well…we’re at least down to the trim work and some of the counter tops still need their tile.

    My pantry is equally as full of flours, beans, rices, grains, noodles and spices. My favorite spice right now is grains of paradise, it is wonderful and has a bit of a bite. I use it instead of cayenne or paprika, it’s my alternative due to my nightshade allergy.

    Great job on the video too!

    Natalie @ Gluten a Go Go

  14. Toni

    Asian nachos – gotta love ’em!

    Black salt? Never even heard of it! Now look what you’ve gone and done! Now I have to have it!

  15. We Are Never Full

    i can actually hear the crunch that those Asian nachos make when you bite in to them. damn! looks good.

    and now i can also add another thing about you i’m jealous of – your pantry space. curses!

  16. Ivy

    Lovely story and recipe. The nachos look delicious as well as the photos. Love that kitchen of yours.

  17. Mike

    Your videos keep getting better! I’m jealous of the pantry and the garden–my “pantry” is a cheapo-build-it-yourself bookshelf kind of thing, lol. The nachos and the cocktail look great! Really nice work 🙂

  18. dhanggit

    i enjoyed watching your video guys 🙂 too bad i couldnt taste and enjoy with you the recipe!! the photos are stunning as always !!btw, i love your kitchen, i wish mine is like yours 🙂

  19. arundati

    hey!! great tour of your pantry….do you know hoarding those goodies is illegal??

    for the black salt….agree with nandita….its great in yoghurt based salads….try a cup of hung yoghurt(greek style) mixed with 3T each of finely grated carrot and cucumber, add a pinch of crushed black pepper and black salt, frresh coriander leaves for garnish…..

    black salt can also be sprinkled on fresh fruit….tastes yummy in fresh lime soda / water….

  20. Rita

    goshhhhh i’ll have to get a whole new flat if i have all your whole collection…hehehe i am GREEN with envy here, damn tiny hong kong apartment LOL

  21. Jen Yu

    Hey guys, I just replied to your email and it bounced back with permanent failure. Just fyi. 🙁

  22. Sandie (Inn Cuisine)

    Caught your video on The Perfect Pantry and wanted to tell you what a great job you did. How much fun are you two? Answer: You’re a blast! I would love to cook with you guys some time! If ever I’m in southern California…I’ll be taking you up on the invitation to dinner! And that garden… it never ceases to amaze me!

  23. Nandita

    Wow, loved the tour of your pantry…the kind of stocks you have, only a video can do justice 🙂 The black salt tastes good in most yogurt raitas, as in yogurt with diced cukes or even fruits like apple, a pinch of cayenne pepper and some cumin powder.
    You surely have the whole world in your kitchen 🙂

  24. LiberalFoodie

    Loved the video. I found your blog last month and have been coming back since!

    black salt is a common spice in various Indian dishes. One of which is called chaat (prounouced, cha-aat). It is a definied as savoury snack found on the streets stalls. Chaat is a broad term for a variety of dishes. One dish that I love to make using black salt is aloo chaat (potato chaat).
    2 boiled potatos, diced
    1/2 can garbanzo beans (dried, soaked over night and cooked is preferred.)
    1/2 onion, diced
    1 tomato, diced
    1/2 tsp black salt
    1/2 tsp ground cumin
    1 tsp chaat masala (can be found at any local indian grocer)
    1/4 tsp chili powder
    Sprinkle of Lemon juice
    cilantro leaves, chopped
    tamarind sauce, optional
    Combine everything together and serve immediately. If using, drizzle with tamarind sauce. A variation to the dish is adding sev (deep fried thin crispy snacks) and puffed rice.

    Other chaat dishes include dahi puri (fried crispy shells filled with boiled potatoes, yogurt and chaat sauces), pani puri (same fried crispy shells filled with potato, chaat masala, cooked black chickpeas, and dipped in a flavored “water”. The water is made from ground cilantro leaves, green chili, ginger, tamarind paste, black salt, dates and water (obviously)). One of the most common and favorite street chaat is pav bhaji. Pav is bread and bhaji is made from boiled and mashed potatoes, peas, tomatoes, cauliflower, and spices- cooked on a hot pan for a long time into a curry form and eaten with bread.

    Maybe I am a little biased but I believe India has the best street food options.

  25. lcsa99

    I love your kitchen! It’s just so big and beautiful! I have a tiny nothing kitchen that doesn’t even have any drawers *sniff*

    I will just sit here admiring yours and your incredibly well stocked pantry 🙂

  26. Neen

    Heehee, loved the video, you guys are suck DORKS 🙂 In that supremely lovable sort of way :).
    Our spices started out living in a tangerine crate, then moved to a shoebox, and are now overflowing all over the damn place. Sigh. Someday, someday, there Will be a bigger kitchen. Until then, I’ll covet yours.

  27. Cakelaw

    Hi guys, I have nominated you for a Yummy Award:

    Love your work!

  28. Cakelaw

    Yum – tgose nachos look super! Unfortunately I can’t see the video at present ’cause my computer is playing up, but I will look out for the joke when I can watch it.

  29. Colleen

    You guys are amazing! It is such a delightful adventure to check your post created so often. You both are AWESOME!

  30. melissa

    great video, great food, great everything! you have the most AMAZING blog. I can’t believe I’ve never visited before after all the times I’ve seen you on ECM’s page. I’m glad I finally did.

    I actually popped over because I noticed your mention of honda ya on chew on that’s contest post. I live about a minute away from honda ya and thought that was funny. my pick for local stuff was santouka ramen in costa mesa. I love that we can get authentic japanese foods in socal.

    and I adore shrimp chips. very nostalgic for me cause my dad used to make them for just me and him sometimes after school. 🙂

  31. Tiina

    Great video! You two work so perfectly together in the kitchen! Like Lisa above, I must admit, I envy you your slide out drawers. 🙂


  32. Lisa

    Todd I played the video for my 10 yr old and he thought that joke was da bomb! You should have heard him laugh. I have to admit….I laughed too. Thanks for sharing your pantry with us. Slide out drawers….I’m jealous!

  33. Madam Chow

    I remember when all my earthly possessions fit into my 1983 Honda Civic hatchback – now, my PANTRY would fill that car! Loved the post!

  34. jaden

    oh btw, I found Three Ladies rice paper!!

    you have no idea how LOUD I SQUEALED when I saw it at the local asian market.

  35. jaden

    ooooooh!!! I miss your home! I love your home – I want to move in! Didn’t I see a spare bedroom in the hallway?

    😉 you guys are too cute.

    xoxo, j

  36. Marc @ No Recipes

    Wow that’s quite a pantry! I love the idea of asian nacho’s.

  37. RecipeGirl

    Too cute video guys 🙂

    Asian Nachos?? Where’d you come up with that? Brilliant idea. They look really interesting and unique.

  38. Denise & Lenny

    GREAT job! Black Salt – WE LOVE IT! We use it a lot when we start grilling … grill it up and then just lightly sprinkle. Very good! Also, sprinkled over homemade butter is pretty damn good!

  39. MyKitchenInHalfCups

    Great how easy you make that look and then it looks like wonderful Nachos! Thanks for the peek into the pantry!

  40. Susan at Sticky,Gooey,Creamy,Chewy

    You guys are killing me! Honestly, you two are too cute and talented for words! I loved the video! You need your own show! Thank you for allowing us into your kitchen. (Your amazingly clean, organized and UNcluttered kitchen, that is.) No wonder everything you cook looks so wonderful!

    I’ve not seen the shrimp chips like that, but I have bought shrimp chips that are already puffed up in snack bags. Are they the same thing? They look the same. Those things are addictive!

  41. Erin

    This is definitely added to my “I absolutely have to make these now” list. Especially since I have a very lonely package of wonton skins sitting in my fridge as I type! Gorgeous image!

  42. shana

    does it say “shrimp chips” on the package?

    I didn’t know I can fry them myself!!! YUMMM!

    And Oh Oh I love your garden!! I also love how you two work so well together in the kitchen with pets walking around but not blocking the way!

  43. Jen Yu

    Todd’s joke was great! Jeremy says the same damn thing 🙂 I loved seeing your kitchen and watching you two cook together. You even had the puppers walking in and out – my two favorite guest stars. I can never find the shrimp chips in plain white, they are also colored. I think of the raw versions as shrinky dinks. Did you ever play with those as kids? Love you guys!! xxoo

  44. noble pig

    That is such a great story…oh the college years…great at the time but glad it’s over. These nachos are creatively delicious looking…thanks for putting this out here.

  45. grace

    what i wouldn’t give to raid your pantry. dang.

    meanwhile, i don’t think my kitchen has ever been so orderly and i’m borderline obsessive compulsive about neatness. kudos to you! 🙂

  46. Lydia (The Perfect Pantry)

    Thanks so much for letting us peek inside your pantry. It’s the first video we’ve had on Other People’s Pantries — maybe it will inspire others?!

  47. Luna Pier Cook

    … oh, and BTW, I’m with Christine about that whole “we can’t do that in Michigan” thing. I mean, we have two apple trees in our yard near Lake Erie, but do ya’ think the danged squirrels would leave any apples for us? Yeah, right!!

  48. Luna Pier Cook

    Well, seeing as I used that same joke last week and got the same response Todd did …

    You guys are a trip! Hey, I have techie questions: What’s your camera setup? What editing software are you using? What, no friggin’ lights?? 😀 Enquiring minds wanna know!

    Oh, right … and the food looks good, too … 😉

  49. Manggy

    Oh, Todd… (Where’s the disdain emoticon?) Hee hee. Just kidding 🙂
    Do you guys ever freak out over the stuff in your pantry going stale or growing mold? Sometimes when I go shopping I see sauces that would be good in one dish but I realize I would only end up using it a little more than once a year so I forgo buying it. I don’t know what I would do with so much fish sauce (thank heavens it doesn’t spoil easily, though)! That is a honking lot of Maggi too!
    I love your nachos! I love shrimp chips (here they’re called prawn crackers.. same difference), but I gotta be watchin my fat intake 🙁 Grr, now I want my cantonese fried chicken too!

  50. Pixie

    I’m seriously jealous of your pantry space. I’ve been making space in my hallway closet just because I have such LITTLE SPACE.

    No advice on black salt. I do have advice on the noodles falling out- have you come across those little clippers for bags- they work a treat.

  51. Wandering Chopsticks

    Bravo! Your videos are always so entertaining. That is a well-stocked pantry. I’m a 3 Crabs fish sauce gal myself.

    Can’t wait to see the garden tour. I love the trellis.

  52. Kitt

    You guys are becoming video fools! What a fun look at your kitchen. How do you keep it (and your garden) so tidy and organized? Do you have staff or something? Do the dogs have hidden talents in household management?

    I want some of those nachos.

    Thought of you today when I picked up banh mi for dinner (while making the rounds of the Asian groceries on a wild goose chase for one stupid kitchen implement).

  53. Christine

    Todd made a joke? j/k 🙂

    Hold on a minute while I go grab an orange from the yard to make our cocktail… I’m so sure!!! I love you guys but I hate you guys 🙂 You remind me every time that you live in paradise, whereas I live in the dark chasm we call Michigan.

    I’ll stop the whining. Your pantry is droolicious! I love Phu Quoc fish sauce too. One of these days, I’d love to travel to that island (have you guys been there, btw?)

    I often microwave shrimp chips – it’s actually not bad at all — though nothing beats good ol’ frying…

  54. evil chef mom

    Hey Todd, I thought your joke was funny because the sous chefs always make those nacho jokes. Like I’m nacho momma, ect.ect. I love shrimp chips! and I love that you cupboards are jammed packed with stuff. Now I don’t feel so bad about mine.

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