Wednesday 30 August 2006

Hakka Khau Yoke(Yam With Pork Belly)

I had heard a lot of good comments and feedbacks on this dish, so I thought just give it a try since my hubby is also a Hakka. To him, this is the 1st time trying out this special Hakka dish. Even though both my in-laws are Hakka, but they had never cooked this dish at home before.

Saw a few recipes in the net, but finally decided to try the recipe from Food Heaven(Lillian Chan). Since she did not mention some of the sauce measuring quantity, I also don't really know whether my version of the Khau Yoke is the correct taste. But overall, the red fermented beancurd taste is strong, maybe I had added too much of it... But for those who is interested, you can take a look at both the recipes. Another one is from Waitakere Redneck's Kitchen.Posted by Picasa

Meme - 5 Things To Eat Before You Die

I had being tag by one of my blog pal, Angie( who I consider to be a bread making expert who loves to explore and bake different kinds of bread). This Meme is rather interesting, as you see you can only choose to eat 5 things before you die so it's rather hard to sacrifice one another. But after struggler here and there, I managed to make up my mind on these:

1. Teochew Yam Paste With Gingko Nut
This is one of my favourite childhood dessert during Chinese New Year or Special Occasion. My late dad used to cook this for reunion dinner dessert and I really love it very much. Since now that he is not around I really miss his style of Yam Paste very much.

2. D24 Durian
Yup! It's Durian again... I guess most of the singaporean like me loves to eat durian. Especially those good grade durian which you just need a few seeds to stop your cravings. I love those with yellow flesh type...and it's really yummy to eat with steam white rice too....

3. Chicken Rice
This is one of the favourite rice for both me and my son. We will eat it at least once or twice a week. I really loves the fragrant of the rice, I know one friend who eats chicken rice for at least 3 to 4 times a week.

4. Satay
I love this Malay BBQ dish which come with a special peanut dipping sauce that will make you wanted to have more and more serving. We love the mutton satay from Satay Club which is tender and juicy.

5. Japanese Tempura Set
I love Japanese cuisine and my most favourite dish is this crispy deep-fry prawns and mixed vegetable with either rice or noodle.

Ok.. Now I shall pass the line to Suyin(The journey of a girl who loves to cook), Jingle and Lilian.

Tuesday 29 August 2006

Corn Muffins

Corn Muffins!!! Yup.... This corn muffin include cornmeal and frozen fresh corns... so it's really CORN CRAZY!!!! For those who love Kenny Rogers's corn muffins.... You are indeed luck.... One of my blog friend Evan had share with us her recipe on Corn Muffins(click link for more details & recipe) which she did a searched over the net.

Monday 28 August 2006

Vietnamese-Style Fried Fish With Lemon Grass

This is a popular dish in South Vietnamese Seaside resorts. You can use either fillet fillets or whole fish for this dish and the seasoning goes well with Salmon Fillets too....

As from the name of this dish, you will know the main spice ingredient used will be Lemon grass. Lemon grass is widely used as an herb in Asian (particularly Thai, Lao, Sri Lankan, Khmer and Vietnamese) and Caribbean cooking. It has a lemon flavour and can be dried and powdered, or used fresh. The stalk itself is too hard to be eaten, except for the soft inner part. However, it can be finely sliced and added to recipes. It may also be bruised and added whole as this releases the aromatic oils from the juice sacs in the stalk.

For this dish, I bought a Yellow Croaker(黄花鱼) which is mainly used for steaming. But it do fixed well in this pan-fried dish and the meat is very tender and fine.

1 Medium Size Fish or Fish Fillet, about 250g
2 Stalks Lemon Grass Thinly Sliced, white parts only
3 Cloves Garlic, lightly pound
4-5 Shallots, peeled and sliced
1 Large Red Chilli or 2 Small Thai Chillies, deseeded and sliced
1 Tablespoon Sugar
2 Tablespoons Fish Sauce
3 Tablespoons Oil
1/4 Green Lime

1. Clean, wash and pat dry the fish. Cut shallow, diagonal slits on both sides of the fish body and place on a large plate.
2. Using a mortar or food processor, pound or blend the lemon grass, garlic, shallots, chilli and sugar to a paste.
3. Add fish sauce and season to taste. Stuffed some of the paste into the stomach of the fish then rub the remaining on both side of the fish and let it marinate for about 1 hour or more.
4. Pour the oil in a large non-stick frying pan on medium heat. Place fish in the pan, cover fried for 1 minutes until skin slightly brown then remove cover and turn to the other side for another 1 minute.
5. Reduce heat to low and carefully turn fish over to cook for another 2 minutes on each other until the skin is golden and crisp and fish is cooked through.
6. Dish and place on plate. Drizzle the pan oil over the fish and square some lime juice over it and serve immediately with rice.Posted by Picasa

Notes: You can used any kind of fish to your preference, Cod Fish works well with this too.

Sunday 27 August 2006

Kong Ba Bao/Kou Rou Bao(扣肉包)

Kou Rou Bao(扣肉包) or Kong Bao Bao... that's what we usually called this Chinese snacks. I love this especially the stew pork belly which is so soft, tender and juicy when you bite it off from the bun. I had also tried a similar stew pork belly dish in the previous post on Dong Po Rou. But this taste and methods are abit different from this.

This stew Kong Ba is towards the dried type of meat where you don't really add water to stew but rather pan-fry it on very very low heat and simmer on it's very own natural juice from the meat. I got to learn this method from one of the mummy from my son's playgroup.

1 Piece Of Pork Belly(三层肉 ), about 200g
1 Small Cinnamon Stick(桂皮 ), about 5cm long
1 Star Anise,八角
6-8 Cloves,丁香
4 Cloves Garlics,蒜头
4 Shallots,小葱头
1 Small Pieces Rock Sugar(冰糖), 10g
1 Tablespoon Oyster Sauce
1 Tablespoon Light Soy Sauce
1 Tablespoon Dark Soy Sauce
1/2 Tablespoon Cooking Wine

1. Wash, clean and trim the pork belly then marinate it with the seasoning, cinnamon stick, star anise, cloves, garlic and shallot for at least 2 hours or overnight.
2. Preheat a small claypot with some 1 tablespoon of oil and saute 3 cloves of garlic and rock sugar to fragrant then add in pork belly and the marinade juice and saute on medium heat for 1 minute then turn it over.
3. Add in 1 - 2 tablespoons of water and let it simmer on very low heat for 30 - 45 minutes, check occasionally to see with if the sauce dried out before the meat is tender, add in extra tablespoons of water and continue to simmer.
4. When done, dish up and cut into serving size and serve together with steam plain bun and lettuce.Posted by Picasa

Friday 25 August 2006

Fresh Peanut Roots & Mushroom Pork Ribs Soup

There is this saying that "Chinese made soup from roots of peanut to help youngsters to grow taller" especially when given to them during their teen years. Some also believed that boiling fresh peanut leaves in water and drinking the before bedtime can ensure a good night sleep. But all other than these believed, you still can whip out some nice and fragrant soup using this Peanut Roots which can be found is most vegetables stall in the local wet market.

To me, I found it very time consuming to wash these peanut roots. Because they are filled with dirts that you need to wash, scrap and soak it in water until clean before you can proceed in making the soup.

For this soup, I also add in some extra dried soup peanuts and Dried Brazil Mushrooms(click on link for more info) to enhance the flavour. I boiled all the ingredients with some pork ribs and chicken bone to hope that it will make the soup morenutritionn and sweet. This is my first time using Brazil Mushrooms which is introduce by Edith from Precious Moments.

1 Bunch of Peanut Roots(花生根), about 200g
300g Pork Ribs(排骨)
1 Chicken Bone(鸡骨)
50-80g Soup Peanuts(花生), soaked in hot water
6 Red Dates(红枣)
1 Tablespoon Gou Qizi(枸杞子)
8-10 Stalks Of Dried Brazil Mushrooms,姬松茸(巴西蘑菇)

1. Trim, wash, scrap and soak the peanut roots in water until the water is clear without dirts.(you need to soak in water for at least 2 hrs)
2. Soaked the peanuts andBrazill mushrooms in hot water for a while, rinse, drained then set aside.
3. Blanched the pork ribs and chicken bone in boiling water, rinse, drained and set aside.
4. Bring a pot of 1.5 litres of water to boil, add in all the ingredients and bring to boil again.
5. Transfer all to a slow cooker and simmer on Auto-Heat for 3 - 4 hrs, season with salt and served.Posted by Picasa

Thursday 24 August 2006

Mix Vegetables & Chicken On Deep-fried Yam

Actually this dish is not suppose to look as what it is shown here. From the site that tracy show me, it supposed to call Savoury Bird Nests. She used grated yam to deep-fry into individual nest then top with some stir-fry ingredients.

I did not get it successful in making the "Yam Nests" as mine grated yam kept sticking on to the metal sieves while frying. But the "Nests" filling, I used the following vegetables and seasonings:

1/2 Portion Of Chicken Breast, 150g
4 Medium Dried Shitake Mushroom, soaked till soften
6-8 Canned Button Mushroom
6 Water Chestnuts, peeled and cut into quarters
1 Small Carrots, peeled and cut into small cubes
100g Pumpkin/Potato, peeled and cut into small cubes
6 Small Dried Chilli, soaked till soften, cut into thick slices
1/2 Green Capsicum, cut into small cubes
Some Spring Onion, sliced thinly in diagonal shapes
1 - 2 Small Fried Chilli, sliced thinly
3 Cloves Garlic, finely chopped
50g Roasted Cashew Nuts
1 Teaspoon Cornstarch mix with 30ml water
1 Teaspoon Cooking Wine
1 Teaspoon Dark Soy Sauce
2 Teaspoon Light Soy Sauce
1/2 Teaspoon Sesame Oil
1 Teaspoon Cornstarch
Dash Of Pepper

1. Wash, trim and cut the chicken into small cubes then marinate it with the marinade for at least 30 minutes or more.
2. Cut the soften shitake mushroom into quarter then blanched in hot oil for a few seconds, drained and set aside.
3. Deep-fry both the carrots and pumpkin in hot oil for 1 minute, drained and set aside.
4. Preheat the pan with 1 tablespoon of oil, saute the dried chilli until fragrant(about 30 sec), then add in minced garlic and continue to saute until slightly golden.
5. Next add in the marinated chicken and stir-fry for 1 minute, then add in the water chestnut, capsicum, pumpkin, carrot, shitake and button mushroom and some of the spring onion.
6. Continue to fry until chicken is cooked through then add in some cornstarch water and stir till sauce almost thicken then add in the cashew nut.
7. Dish up the mixture and place it in the "Yam Nests"(refer to the link for making it) and serve with extra garnish of the spring onion and chilli slices.

Notes: You can replace the chicken by either pork slices or prawns. Posted by Picasa

Creamy Avocado Dessert

Do you know what is this green mixture with the chocolate sauce? Hahaha... For your info, is not Green Tea Ice-cream nor Mint Ice-cream. Is blended Avocado dessert.... This is another way to consume your avocado if you don't like to eat it as what it is.... For more information on Avocado, you can click on this link "All about Avocado".

The original recipe come from Suyin's "A yucky Shade of Green" post. She used sugar, palm sugar and mocha powder for the sauce. But Tracy taught me another methods is to used dark chocolate melted with palm sugar and drizzle on top and it taste great as well. Posted by Picasa

To ripen avocado, place it in a brown paper bag and store at room temperature with an apple or banana for 2 to 4 days or until ripe.

Store cut avocado halves with the seed left intact. Drizzle with lemon or lime juice and wrap tightly in plastic, ensuring plastic is pressed on surface.

Wednesday 23 August 2006

Yam & Cabbage Pork Belly Rice

There are a few version and methods in making this homemade "Yam & Cabbage Pork Belly Rice". Different dialect group tends to cook it in different kind of ingredients. For my case, this was what my late dad used to cook for us when he was around. Sometime he will omit the yam and just cooked it with cabbage and pork belly.

This is a very simple one dish meal which consists of vegetables like cabbage, yam and mushroom. If you don't like pork belly then you can replace it with lean pork or chicken fillet. It will taste just as good, the secrete of making this dish fragrant and tasty is by adding pound dried shrimp and fried shallot. The aroma of the shallot oil will make the rice taste great.

I also used the water for soaking the mushroom to cook the rice, so that the mushroom fragrant really goes into the rice grains itself. But if you do not like the fragrant of the mushroom then you can just used normal water instead.

100 - 120g Yam, peel and cut into 2" Cubes
150g Pork Belly, removed excess fat and cut into thin strips
150g Cabbage, shredded
3 Medium Shittaka Mushrooms, soaked till soft
1 Tablespoon Of Dried Shrimps, soaked till soft
1 Tablespoon Of Minced Garlic
4 Shallots, thinly sliced
2 Teaspoon Soy Sauce
Dash Of Dark Soy Sauce
1/2 Teaspoon Sesame Oil
Dash Of Pepper
1 Teaspoon Cooking Wine
1 Medium Chilli, thinly sliced
1 Small Stalk Of Spring Onion, thinly sliced
1 Tablespoon Dried Shallots
Some Dark Soy Sauce

1. Wash, trim and cut the pork into thin strips then marinate it with seasoning for at least 30 minutes.
2. Cut the soaked soften mushroom into thin strips, set aside. Then lightly pound the soften dried shimp.
3. Preheat the pan with 2 Tablespoons of oil then saute the shallot slices until slightly golden brown, remove and set aside.
4. Add some oil to the pan, saute the dried shrimps and half of the garlic until fragrant then add in the shredded mushroom and cabbage.
5. Stir-fry for about 1 minutes, then add in 1/2 Tablespoon oyster sauce and 50ml water, cover and simmer on low heat until the water almost dried up. Dish up and set aside.
6. Wash the pan, and add 1 tablespoon of the reserve shallot oil, saute the remaining half garlic until fragrant then add in the marinated pork and yam, stir over medium high heat until almost done.
7. Next add in 1/2 tablespoon of oyster sauce and 100ml of water then simmer over low heat until the yam is soften. Dish up and set aside.
8. Cook the white rice accordingly when the water is almost dry up, add in the vegetables and pork mixture into it and stir well.
9. Continue to cook over low heat for another 5 minutes if using stove or until the cooked in the rice-cooker.
10. Serve the cooked yam rice with garnish. Posted by Picasa

Tuesday 22 August 2006

Wrapped Asparagus With Pork & Sesame Seeds

This was an easy and delicious finger food to make for all occasion. It consists of both meat and vegetable which make it a health snack even though it is a deep-fry food.

The original recipe used only white sesame while I use a mixture of white and black sesame seeds. For this dish, you need to purchase those thick and fat asparagus instead of the thin type so that it could be easily wrapped by the pork slices.

For this dish, I made two different version. 4 are coated with sesame seeds while 2 are coated with breadcrumbs.

6 Slices Of Pork Fillet
6 Thick Asparagus
20g White Sesame Seeds
5g Black Sesame Seeds
3 Shallots, thinly slices
2" Ginger, finely grate
2 Tablespoons Cornstarch
1/2 Beaten Egg
2 Teaspoon Light Soy Sauce
1 Teaspoon Sugar
1 Teaspoon Mirin/Rice Wine
Dash Of Pepper & Sesame Oil

1. Pound the pork slices with the back of the knife to make it more tender and spread out.
2. Marinate it with shallot, ginger and seasoning for at least 30 minutes.
3. Cut all the asparagus into equal length then use a vegetable peeler and scrape off the skin around 2" from the bottom part of the stem.
4. Wrap each asparagus with 1 piece of the marinated pork slice tightly then dust with some cornstarch.
5. Deep in the beaten egg then coat with the white and black sesame mixture.
6. Set aside while repeating the rest of the ingredients.
7. Heat oil in a pot, then deep-fry in medium heat until crisp and golden brown, drained and set aside before serving. Posted by Picasa

Yam Balls & Crispy Prawn Salad

Try making this dish from one of the cookbook which is called the "Flaky Taro and Scallop Ring" but in the end I change the entire dish and end up something like this. Because instead of using scallop I replace it with prawn and I also deep-fried the remaining prawn with coated breadcrumbs and serve with some fruit salad.

The original recipe for this yam balls are supposed to be very flaky type but mine was not. I am also not sure which steps had I miss out or do wrongly, but overall these yam balls do taste good as well.

Ingredients: (make 5 portions)
150g Yam, peeled and cut into cubes
40g Vegetable Shortening
5 Teaspoons(25ml) Boiling Water
2 Tablespoons Wheat Starch Flour
1/4 Teaspoon Salt,
1/4 Teaspoon Sugar
1/4 Teaspoon Five Spice Powder
5 Medium Prawn, shelled & devein

1. Steam yam for about 15 - 20 minutes until tender, use a fork to mash up the yam then set aside.
2. Put the flour and boiling water in a small bowl and stir till combined.
3. Add the flour paste into the yam paste together with shortening, salt, sugar and five spice powder.
4. Knead into a smooth paste then divide the paste into 5 portion, wrap 1 prawn each and shape into round balls.
5. Heat oil and deep-fry until yam balls are crisp and golden brown, drain well.

Fruit Salad Ingredients:
1 Avocado, diced
1 Tomato, deseeds and diced
1 Apple, peeled, cored and dice
1 Tablespoon Salad Dressing

1. Mix all the above ingredients together and stir till combined then served.

Breadcrumbs Prawns Ingredients:
6 - 8 Prawns, shelled & devein
3 Tablespoons Dried Breadcrumbs
1 Tablespoon Cornstarch
Some Beaten Egg

1. Coat the prawn with some cornstarch then dip in beaten egg and coat with breadcrumb.
2. Deep-fry it in medium hot oil until crisp and golden brown, drain and serve. Posted by Picasa

Sunday 20 August 2006

Rice With Durian

Since young I had this habit of eating Durian with warm white rice. For some of you, you might share the same interest as me while for other you might think... Er.... "Durian and White"! Actually, it really taste great to eat durian with rice, especially when you had those top grade can creamy durian. Do give it a try if you happen to have rice and durian at the same time..... It taste as great as the Thai "Durian with Glutinous Rice" dessert.....Posted by Picasa

Friday 18 August 2006

Tracy's Special Homemade Dishes

Tracy is one of my best blogger friend and also the only one that I had mit up with so far. She is a very Enthusiastic person who always try out new recipes. She can even whip up a dessert late in the night or wakes up early in the morning to bake or prepare dishes. I really admire her way of doing things and she really encourage me a lot during my downtimes and pushing me trying all those interesting recipes. Like now, I do not need to buy any commercial ricotta cheese because she is the one who taught me how to make it. Thanks pal.

Recently I bought my son over to her house and she is really very warm hearted hosts who whip up a wonderful meal and dessert for us. We really appreciate it so after I came back, I decide to try cooking these two dishes which we had eaten at her place. The 1-2-3 Chicken Stew is a recipe that is pass down to her from her mum, it's a really easy and wonderful dish that everyone should give it a try. The original recipe contains only chicken or chicken with potatoes but I add in some greens and tomato to enhance the colour and give it some extra flavour.

1-2-3 Chicken Stew
500g Chicken Pieces, cut into bite size
4-6 Cloves Of Garlic, finely chopped
1 Tablespoon Tau Cheong Paste, 豆酱
2 Tablespoons Sugar
3 Tablespoons Black Vinegar,黑醋
1/2 - 1 Teaspoon Dark Soy Sauce
1 Packet Of Sweet Peas,甜豆
1 Medium Potato, cut into small cubes
1 Small Carrot, cut into small cubes
1 Medium Tomato, cut into wedges
1/2 Cup Water

1. Wash and clean the peas then saute it in a pan with some oil, garlic and half the tomato wedges for 1 minutes, dish and set aside.
2. Cut, wash and drain the chicken pieces then set aside.
3. Preheat the pan with 1 tablespoon of oil then saute the garlic, tau cheong paste, sugar and black vinegar until fragrant then add in the chicken pieces.
4. Stir-fry the chicken for about 30 seconds then add in the potato, carrot and tomato.
5. Next add in some water, cover and simmer the chicken for about 5 minutes till the potato and carrot are tender.
6. Lastly thicken the sauce with some cornstarch water and serve.

I used 2 chicken drumsticks and 3 chicken wings.
You can use this recipe to cook pork ribs instead of chicken too.

Other than the chicken stew, this is one of their family favourite dish which is the Stew Pork Belly. She aslo gave me some fresh whole nutmeg which I had never come across in Singapore. The whole Nutmeg looks similar like a chestnut which wrap in a shell.

This stew pork belly dish is very different from those that I had eaten before. This fragrant of the nutmeg make this dish very refreshing and the taste is more towards the sweeter side rather than the salty pork belly that we eaten outside. For those who loves stew pork belly, maybe you can give this dish a try but you must be prepared because this is not a salty dish.

Stew Dong Po Pork Belly
500g Pork Belly(三层肉), blanched and cut into 3 sections
3 Slices Of Ginger
2 Nutmeg(豆蔻)
2 Star Anise(八角)
20g Lotus Seeds(莲子), soaked till soft
6-8 Shallot, sliced
15g Rock Sugar
2 Tablespoons Dark Soy Sauce
200ml Rice Wine/Cooking Wine
200ml Water
Some Cornstarch water

1. Wash and cut the pork belly strips into 3 sections then blanched in boiling water, drained and set aside.
2. Soak the lotus seeds in warm water until soft, drain and set aside.
3. Preheat a claypot with 1 tablespoon of oil then saute the ginger, shallot, star anise and nutnug until fragrant then add in the blanched pork belly and lotus seeds.
4. Saute the above for 1 - 2 minutes then add in dark soy sauce, rice wine and water.
5. Simmer the mixture over lowest heat until pork is tender and fragrant for about 3 hours.
6. Thicken the sauce with some cornstarch water and serve.

Note: You can add in hard boiled eggs or firm doufu according to your preference. Posted by Picasa

Monday 14 August 2006

Cherry Clafoutis

Saw this very interesting cherries recipe from Obachan's Kitchen. Since cherries are in season now, I decided to get some and try out this recipe. In the original recipe, they called for 1kg of cherries, but I only used about 500g and I already think that it's a lot.

As like what she had mention, she soaked her pitted cherries in Sherry. But for my case, I soaked them in Grand Mariner(orange liqueur) to make enhance the cherries favour in a better way.

Overall, this cake is very moist and soft. It had a slightly light almond scent fragrant because of the added almond essence. But for those who is not an almond fan, then I think you should omit it or else you won't like the scent of the cake.

In the recipe itself, it said used 1 cup of milk for the flour batter, but I only used about 1/2 cup because I found that my flour batter is already quite watery. So if you do want to try out this recipe, please add in the milk slowly and stir until an pouring cake batter consistency. Posted by Picasa

Friday 11 August 2006

Double Boil Herbal Chicken Essence

For those who had went thru the traditional confinement food, you might have try this Herbal/DOM Chicken Essence before. This soup contains pure chicken juice with herbs and DOM instead of water soup. It's a very "PU(朴)" herbal soup that not only suitable for confinement mum but also can be taken about once a month after the menstruation period.

The way I did my double boil is by placing another pot into the slow-cooker and switch to auto heat to cook. Because I am too lazy to stood by the side on and off to check the heat and water level for normal stove double-boil.

Ingredients: (serve 1 or 2)
I Black Chicken,黑鸡
1 Tablespoon Gou Qizi(枸杞子), reserve 1/2 tablespoon
4 Red Dates(红枣), reserve 2 red dates
1 Slice Of BeiQi(北耆), cut into 3 small pieces
3 Slices Of Dang Gui(当归)
1 Small Stalk Of Dang Shen(当参), cut into small 1"
1 Slice Of Huai Shan(淮山), break into 3 sections
40ml Of DOM Wine(法国廊酒), pour in after cooking 2.5 hrs

1. Wash and trim all the fast and skin away from the chicken.
2. Cut into 4 sections and pound finely with the back of the knife. Keep aside.
3. Rinse and drain all the herbs then place it in the middle of the double-boil pot. Use a medium saucer or rice bowl to cover the herbs.
4. Place the pounded chicken pieces over the top of the sauce(refer to the picture above).
5. Lastly sprinkler the reserved qou qizi and red dates on top, covered and place it in the slow cooker.
6. Add enough boiling water to cover almost 3/4 or more of the double-boil pot then cook over low heat for approximately 2.5 hrs then open and drizzle the DOM evenly on the chicken.
7. Continue to cook for another 30 - 45 minutes. Serve immediately.

Notes: You can used either Kampung Chicken or Black Chicken for this soup. Posted by Picasa