Monday 16 May 2011

[$20 Budget Meal] Winter Melon Soup, Steamed Silken Tofu with Salmon And Sweetcorn Plus Steamed Beef Steak with Onion

For this set of Budget Meal it will be slightly a bit more expensive than those I prepared previously due to the higher cost of Salmon and Beef. Here we spent a total of roughly S$18.60 for Winter Melon Soup, Steamed Tofu with Salmon and Steamed Beef Steak. And to your surprise this is also my very first time sharing a “beef” dish in this blog too.

Sometime cooking is way of art and mental planning too. For example this Soup of the Day is rather similar to my previous “Winter Melon, Woodear And Pork Ribs Soup” but I replaced the woodear with sweetcorn and carrot for a more refreshing taste.

Ingredients: (serves 4)
300g Pork Ribs
250g Winter Melon, skin removed cut into wedges
1 Sweetcorn, cut into sections
1 Medium Carrot, cut into thick slices
6 Red Dates

1. Blanched pork ribs in boiling water for 2 - 3 minutes, remove and rinse with tap water. Set aside.

2. Bring 1.5 litres of water to boil in a soup pot.

3. Add in all the ingredients when the mixture comes to boil again, lower the heat and simmer for about 30 - 40 minutes.

4. Lastly season it with salt to taste according to own preference.

Total cost for this dish is about S$5.80 with breakdown shown below:-
Cost of Ingredients:
~ Pork Ribs = S$3.00
~ Fresh Winter melon, Carrot and Sweetcorn= S$2.80

This is the second time I have used “salmon” fillet in preparing steamed dish. The first one was about a year ago where I steamed the salmon fillet together with Dang Gui to create a Chinese New Year dish (recipe). In this post, I combined this month Budget Meal specific ingredients – “Tofu” together with salmon to prepare this “Steamed Silken Tofu with Salmon And Sweetcorn” where you get to enjoy 3 different textures in one dish.

Ingredients: (serves 4)
1 Box of Silken Tofu
150g Salmon Fillet
1/2 Sweetcorn, remove kernels from cob
5 Slices of Ginger, julienne

1 Teaspoon Sesame Oil
1/4 Teaspoon Freshly Ground Black Pepper
Pinch of Salt

The bland tofu blends well with the sweet and fragrant taste from the corn kernels as well as with a contrast between crunchy and smooth texture that makes you crave for more scoop. The adding of salmon increase the Omega 3 and Proteins of this dish, which makes it, perfect for everyone at home especially the growing up kids.

1. Cut the tofu into slices of equal thickness, drained well and place it onto steaming plate.

2. Cut the Salmon fillet into cubes and scatter it together with the fresh corn kernels evenly on top and around the sides of the tofu.(refer to the photo above)

3. Next top with julienne ginger and spoon the seasoning(mix all the ingredients together)over the prepared tofu.

4. Cover the tofu plate with cling wrap tightly leaving just a little ventilation hole.

5. Steam it on high heat in a steamer/wok (with boiling water in it)  for about 10 minutes. Remove and serve.

Total cost for this dish is about S$5.90 with breakdown shown below:-
Cost of Ingredients:
~ Salmon = S$3.90
~ Silken Tofu and Sweetcorn= S$2.00

If you have being following most of my blog posts, you will notice that this seems to be my very 1st "Beef" dish recipe from those hundreds of recipes that I have. Friendly speaking using "beef" as one of the main ingredients is something that I always phobia of because to me you can either ruin or perfect it in just a few seconds of cooking time.

Ingredients: (serves 2)
200g Beef Steak, whole/slices
1 Medium Red Onion, thinly slices
2 Stalks Spring Onion, cut into sections
Red Chili, slices
3 Garlic Coves, lightly pound

10g Butter
1 Teaspoon Fresh Milk
1 Teaspoon Black Peppercorns, crashed

Initially I was still quite worry about the taste and texture while preparing this dish but when it is out from the steamer I was totally surprised with the outcome. The texture of the beef slices is still quite good and tender despite of the steaming method. And the beef stock sauce was great with a hint of black pepper and onion taste too. Indeed this is a great chance on preparing steak on it's usual char-grilled or stew methods. (if you don't consumed beef, you can also replaced it with Pork Fillet(梅肉/腰肉) which is more tender in texture).

1. Using paper kitchen towel lightly pat dry the beef steak. Set aside.

2. As I want the sauce and seasoning to infuse the steak in a faster way, I have cut the steak into slices before arranging them on steaming plate. (you can leave it as whole and serve as individual main course too)

3. Next arrange all the ingredients and seasonings on top of the beef steak.

4. Wrap the plate with cling wrap steam it over high heat for about 8 - 10 minutes depend on your preference.

5. Remove and serve with steamed rice or as individual main course with mashed/baked potato.

Total cost for this dish is about S$6.90 with breakdown shown below:-
Cost of Ingredients:
~ Beef Steak = S$5.40
~ Spring onion, garlic, chili and onion = S$1.50

CLOSING DATE For [May $20 Budget Meal] Event:
~ Wednesday, 25 May 2011, 2359 hours and all entries will be compiled and posted on 31st May 2011.

If you loves to whipped some quick and budget healthy dishes for your family. I would like to invite you to join us in our May Budget Meal event to share your homecook dishes with us(more detail HERE).


  1. The steamed beef steak dish is interesting and so fusion! I'm going to bookmark this to try.  

  2. Nasi Lemak Lover16/5/11 2:57 pm

    you family members is lucky to have you, all your dishes sound delicious and healthy! Thanks for sharing. 

  3. Ellena, you are so talented in cooking that I really don't know what to say.  Every visit here makes me wonder you can't just be a housewife and food blogger.  I really want to make a special dish that my kids enjoy using tofu, but I've been so busy that I hope I can find the time to make.  I've been a little swamp these days.  Wait for my entry!! =P


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