Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Korean Sweet Pancake - Hoddeok

Hoddeok, a Korean Sweet Pancake with filling. First time I came across this from Frozen Wings' blog (thanks Lena for sharing) and I jumped at trying it. The words that captured my attention - NO KNEADING required. Yes, you read it correctly, this yeasty chewy soft pancakes were done in a jiffy using a whisk and spatula. The longest time would be the proofing, but well, that would be the hard work of the yeast.

Even the tools used were minimalist, I didn't even need to whip out the rolling pin, just flatten the dough with my palms to wrap the filling. The crispy crust and the chewy soft centre coupled with the nutty filling, I downed one piece hot from the wok pan. It was that good.

Yield: 4 pieces
Reference: Lena
125ml warm water
1tsp instant yeast
1tbsp sugar

1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tbsp vegetable oil
140g all purpose flour

Filling (mix together):
2tbsp soft brown sugar
a dash of cinnamon powder
1tbsp almond nibs (toasted) *recipe asked for chopped walnuts, but I ran out of this, thus the substitution*

1/ Pour water into a big mixing bowl, then add instant yeast, sugar, salt and vegetable oil and mix together with a hand whisk.
2/ Add in the flour and continue to mix till well incorporated to get a lump of dough.
3/ Leave to proof in a covered bowl for an hour till doubled in volume, then stir the mixture (fret not it will deflate slightly) and let it rest for 10 minutes.
4/ Divide dough into 4 portions (about 75g each piece for me as the total weight was 300g).
5/ Lightly pat each piece of dough with your palm to flatten it, wrap in one tablespoon of the fillings, then seal tightly.
6/ Heat up non-stick pan with one drop of oil, then pan-fry the wrapped dough on one side for about 30 seconds then flip over to pan-fry the other side.
7/ Once flipped over, use spatula to flatten the dough and fry till both sides are golden brown, then cover the pan to cook the dough for another minute.
8/ Remove from pan and serve hot.

Love this easy as ABC winner recipe. Worth a try, or rather, a few tries.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Maple Syrup Roast Chicken Wings

Other than using Maple Syrup for pancakes, I was trying to google for a recipe that uses it in some other form. And voila...lots of recipes cropped up for using it to roast chicken. I went for one with oriental touch as I was planning on roasting a whole bird of chicken some time within the week as well, so this was the recipe I used. It was so so easy to do, just marinate the chicken wings, then roast it in the ovenette at 180 degree Celcius for 15 minutes and attack while it is still hot! The balance of the marinade was not wasted at all, I reduced it slightly in the pot over the stove so that it thickens and this went very well spooned over white steamed rice.

Yield: 3 servings
6 pieces chicken wings (approximate weight of 750g)
2 tbsp dark soya sauce *I used LKK brand*
3 tbsp soft brown sugar
1 tbsp oyster sauce
2 tbsp light soya sauce *I used LKK brand*
2 tbsp maple syrup *I used Lyle brand, refer photo below*
1 tbsp Shao Xing wine
3 tsp sesame oil
1 tbsp All Spice powder *I omitted because I don't have it at home*

1/ Marinate the chicken wings with everything on the list and leave it in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour for the flavour to soak in.
2/ Line a baking try with aluminium foil and place chicken wings on it, then roast in a preheated oven at 180 degree Celcius for 15 minutes.
3/ At the same time, pour the marinade into a pot and bring it to a boil till slightly thickened and reduced.
4/ Remove the chicken wings from the oven and either pour the gravy over or serve this separately.

The brand of Maple Syrup I used, or rather, it was Maple flavoued Golden Syrup by Lyle.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Dried Shrimps Sambal

I was in the mood for some spicy food, and chanced upon this in Precious Moment's blog. How timely! Thanks Edith for sharing the recipe, my first attempt at making Sambal Hae Bee passed dh's mark. As I didn't deseed the dried chilli completely, the result was too spicy, so I toned it down with one extra tablespoon of soft brown sugar from the original recipe which requested for one tablespoon only.

Good to go with rice or bread, or even stir-fry. But I normally stick to steamed soft bread or if I am extra hardworking, french toast would be the other option.

Source: PM
Yield: 1 cup (250ml)
10 shallots (approximate weight of 150g)
3 cloves of garlic
15 pieces dried chillies (cut, soaked and deseeded)
5 pieces chilli padi
1 tbsp toasted belachan (approximate weight of 10g)
100g dried shrimp (soaked and cleaned, then pounded)
6 tbsp oil

1 tbsp assam paste mixed with 3 tbsp water to get 1.5 tbsp assam juice
1 tbsp soft brown sugar *I used 2 tbsp*
1/2 tsp salt to taste

1/ Blend the spices together, then heat up oil and sautee them until fragrant.
2/ Add in the pounded dried shrimp and continue to stir fry till well combined.
3/ Lastly add in the assam juice and fry until dry. Add in sugar and salt to taste, the dish out and leave to cool.

This was the brand of belachan I used, for reference

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Almond Longan Jelly

After making this, I still had more than half a can of evaporated milk plus the balance of the canned longan. What I did was to make something similar, but I wanted the texture to be harder so that I can cut them up into pieces to get more bites. So, I kept the recipe intact except for the portion on agar-agar powder and gelatine. Instead of half teaspoon each in the original recipe, I upped them to one tablespoon each. Also added one tablespoon of chinese almond powder (the one used for almond drink) for a twist.

This makes a lot, and each time I used about a quarter of the big piece of Almond Jelly to go with different types of canned fruits. I've tried with canned longan, cocktail fruits and even peaches only, they go very well together.

Yield: 4 servings
350g water
50g sugar
1 tbsp agar-agar powder *I used Swallow Globe brand*
1 tbsp gelatine
1 tbsp chinese almond drink powder

100ml evaporated milk or soya milk *I used Ideal brand evaporated milk*
50ml longan syrup from canned longan

1/ Place sugar and water in a pot, then sprinkle agar-agar powder, gelatine powder and chinese almond drink powder on the surface and cook this concoction over low medium heat until bubbles form around the edges of the pot.
2/ In a measuring jug, mix milk and longan syrup then stir this into the pot of agar-agar solution and turn off the heat, no need to bring to a boil.
3/ Pour mixture into a square container and let it cool and firm up in the refrigerator.
4/ Cut almond jelly into cubes and serve this together with some canned fruits of your choice plus some ice cubes before serving.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

BBQ July 2011

Chicken wings for barbeque, this time for the two of us, I used 6 pieces of wings only. Because besides this, there was the spare ribs, sausages, tri-clor capsicum and fresh mushrooms. Also finished off the 4 slices of canned pineapple rings instead of buying one whole fresh pineapple.

Despite scaling down, we still can't finish up all the food. Should have just stuck to one color of capsicum will do, and one punnet of mushrooms.

The recipe this time was my own creation as I wanted to try how the Smoke Liquid turns out. I bought this bottle during the last last trip to KL at Jaya Grocer @ Empire Shoping Gallery Subang Jaya. There were a few ways to use this bottle of smoke liquid, and adding it to the marinade being one of it. The aroma of smokey flavour was apparent for the propotion I added, which was just one teaspoon for the six chicken wings. Next I might try to sprinkle it onto the burning charcoal while barbequeing to see if the effect is better. One bottle certainly goes a long way.

6 pcs chicken wings
1T honey
1T soft brown sugar
1T McCormick's Hickory Smoked Seasoning Mix
1t smoke liquid
2T Heinz's Barbeque Sauce
a few dashes Maggi Seasoning
1/4t salt

1/ Rinse chicken wings and pat try, then marinate with all the seasoning above for at least 2 hours in the chiller.
2/ Bring to room temperature before barbequeing, and baste the chicken wings with the marinade from time to time while barbequeing for a moist and succelent barbequed chicken wings.

The aforementioned McCormick's Hickory Smoked Seasoning Mix

The aforementioned Smoke Liquid

Melt In Your Mouth BBQ Ribs

It was a long weekend, and we didn't have any plans. Was supposed to go Hatyai with family friends, but got aborted at the last minute. So out came the barbeque just for fun.

Tried two different recipes this time, one was self-created to make use of the available stuffs in the pantry. That shall be in another entry for the chicken wings. This Cola Spare Ribs was from here, thanks SIG! I did mine with slight modification because I do not have spices at home as I rarely rarely use them. Won't know what to do with them if I were to grab a bag, which no matter how small a packet they comes in, I will still have balance.

Indeed melt-in-the-mouth, I boiled mine for 2 hours and finished it off in the pit. The pork ribs was about RM10, more than enough to feed two pax.

Source: Daily Affairs
700g pork rib slab (I asked for 3 ribs joined together and have the butcher halved them)
1.5 liter Coca-Cola (I used all because I don't drink coke on its own, and they go flat if kept, so waste not, want not)
1 bulb garlic
Sufficient tomato ketchup

1/ Place everything into pot and bring it to a boil till meat is fork-tender.
2/ Remove the pork rib from the pot and slather some ketchup over the top and grill them in the oven to crisp till a lovely brown.

This is really so easy and yummy!

Monday, July 18, 2011

Delicious at Straits Quay

Delicious opened at Straits Quay for a few months now, but we heard that it was jam-packed most of the time, so we thought to let the crowd cool down a bit before checking it out. So last Friday, we were in the vicinity of Seri Tanjung, we went in for tea time treat. Half the restaurant was filled, shows how good a business they are enjoying.

This was my drink - Frosty Lychee & Lime @ RM9.90. Delicious are famous for a couple of lychee drinks, this being one of it per the host that attended to our table. Very quenching for the hot afternoon, it wasn't as sour as I expected it to be, which is good because then, it complements the lychee without overpowering it.

All the desserts at their counter looks inviting, it took us a long while to weigh our options. The Tiramisu in a Glass was luscious, Sticky Date Pudding was equally yummy...and there was the Banoffee Pie. Aww...decision time, in the end, the Applelicious Pie won! It was RM12.90 and came served with a scoop of Vanilla Ice Cream on the side. The sugary pastry on top was the factor we fell for.

The generous apple filling within the crust, which was cooked with cinnamon powder, thus the dark brown tinge. Eventhough the filling was generous, it would have been great if there is something else to go with the apples, such as raisins.

Delicious was dishing out a lot of fresh cakes at the time we were time, probably in preparation for dinner crowd. Which is good, because then, one doesn't get stale cakes that are dry and yucky. The Cappuccino RM9.90 that dh had was mediocre, and there was not coffee art on it, thus I didn't capture any shots.
Now one item down, what shall we try next?

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Fresh Durian Roll Take II

This batch of Fresh Durian Roll is different from this in terms of fillings. Both the whipped cream and durian are mixed together, so there's even distribution of flavours. The crepe skin is also more pliable, it didn't tear unless I stuffed too much of filling. With one recipe, I managed to get a dozen of this Fresh Durian Roll, and promptly gave away half to my neighbor because I can feel my throat a bit sore from the hot weather. Also, better to share the calories since I know there were so deliciously irresistable.

Guest star for today - D24. I wanted to try other varieties, but I went to the durian stall too early, about 11am and not much selections in terms of choices, so I went for the most plump looking durian. The so-called "peak season" would be from 2pm onwards to get more variety from past observation. Paid RM8 for this, and they were all used up to make the 12 Durian Rolls.

The rolls I got are quite squarish in shape, due to the my non-stick pan size of 6". Wendy's look more like a popiah to me, elegantly longish, wonder if she got magic fingers?!?

Source: Wendy's at Table for 2 , thanks Wendy!
Yield: 12 pieces of 3" length
70g all purpose flour
10g cornstarch
250g milk *I used Fresh milk because I ran out of UHT milk*
40g castor sugar
20g butter, melted
2nos egg yolk

1/ Melt butter in non-stick pan over gentle heat, then turn off the heat.
2/ Mix all purpose flour and cornstarch then pour in half the milk to mix with a wire whisk till smooth.
3/ Combine sugar, egg yolks, melted butter and the balance of the milk together, then mix this into the smooth batter.
4/ Let batter rest for at least one hour.
5/ Wipe pan with paper towel to rid if of excess butter, then heat pan over medium heat.
6/ Lower heat to low, then swirl in batter onto non-stick pan and let it cook till surface is matte and doesn't stick to finger. *No need to flip the crepe*
7/ Loosen the sides of crepe and overturn pan onto a chopping board to dislodge the fragile crepe. Transfer to plate when it has cooled down to touch. *This will only be one or two minutes because as it is very thin*
8/ Return the pan to the stove and let it heat up for 10 seconds before making another crepe.
9/ Repeat frying process till batter is all used up.

1/2 tsp gelatine
1tbsp water
125g non-dairy UHT whipping cream
1tbsp sugar
250g fresh durian

1/ Freeze mixing bowl 15 minutes before use, and in the meantime, sprinkle gelatine over water and let it bloom.
2/ Melt gelatine over boiling water and set it aside to cool.
3/ Whisk whipping cream until it starts to take form, then put in the sugar and whisk till soft peaks.
4/ Put in the melted gelatine and continue to beat till stiff.
5/ Using a fork, mash up the fresh durian till it gets creamy, then fold this into the whipped cream. *Be careful not to over fold, lest deflating the whipped cream*
6/ Keep this durian whipped cream filling chilled in the fridge until the time to use.
7/ Distribute filling evenly over the cooled crepe, roll up and chill well before serving.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Longan Jelly

Time of the year for the visiting haze, so it means time of the year for cooling desserts, or so to speak. This Longan Jelly was much softer than those commercially sold at Soya Bean Stalls, and it glides down the throat quite easily, soothing the tract along the way. This scaled down recipe was sufficient for approximately 4 servings, depending on serving size. Sweetness was mild, no need for any adjustment for our taste.

Source: Sonia
Yield: 4 servings
1/2 tsp agar-agar powder *I used Swallow Globe brand, refer photo below*
1/2 tsp gelatine powder
50g sugar
350ml water

100ml evaporated milk or soya milk *I used Ideal brand evaporated milk*
50ml longan syrup from canned longan
1.5 tsp lemon juice *I omitted but results turned out ok*

1/ Place sugar and water in a pot, then sprinkle both agar-agar powder and gelatine powder on the surface and cook this concoction over low medium heat until bubbles form around the edges of the pot.
2/ In a measuring jug, mix milk and longan syrup then stir this into the pot of agar-agar solution. Add lemon juice and turn off the heat, no need to boil.
3/ Pour mixture into prepared vessels and let it cool and firm up in the refrigerator.
4/ Spoon canned longans with 2 tablespoon of longan syrup onto Longan Jelly, and then topped with a moraschino cherry before serving.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Pickled Young Ginger

I made this Pickled Young Ginger

to eat with this - Century Egg.

Never would I thought I would be able to create this at home, not until Wendy posted it on her blog. Though there were lots of steps involved, it was not too difficult as the illustration given by her was very very very detailed, with pictorial guide even. Thanks Wendy!

I tried with only a quarter of the recipe to get one jar. For 500g, I got about 4 pieces of young ginger about palm-size, and it was RM3.50. Sufficient to try my hands on making it, and enough to justify the time and effort. In fact, after trying the result, I wished I had done more, as it was very crunchy yet not too fiery hot. Besides eating it with century egg, I even snack on it as this pickled young ginger aids in digestion.

Source: Table for 2
500g young ginger
1 heaped tablespoon salt
150g rice vinegar
150g sugar

1/ Use a knife, scrape off all the skin of young ginger, then rinse it well.
2/ Slice the ginger thinly using a mandolin, then put salt over young ginger.
3/ Toss it well and let young ginger sit for a minimum of 30 minutes until it is pliable. Means it is limp.
*Young ginger will turn colour to slightly pinkish, but it is ok, don't worry*
4/ Boil vinegar and sugar together until sugar dissolves, then turn off the heat and set this aside to cool down.
5/ Rinse the salted young ginger and squeeze it dry, repeat again this process.
6/ Pour boiling water over young ginger and ensure all the pieces of young ginger are heated so as to rinse off the fiery taste.
7/ Pour the young ginger over a colander and let it drip dry and cool down.
8/ When the young ginger has cooled down, squeeze it as dry as possible.
* Young ginger slices should taste salted but not too salty at this stage, but should no longer taste very fiery*
9/ Place young ginger into a non-reactive vessel (be it glass, ceramic or stainless steel) and pour the cooled *it is ok if the vinegar is not cooled down per Wendy as this won't soften the young ginger slices* vinegar syrup over it. Sitr gently with clean chopsticks and let this sit for at least 2 days before consumption.
* Vinegar syrup might appear thick initially but after mixing it with the young ginger for awhile, it will be diluted to water consistency*

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Dinner at Sunny Restaurant

Just wanted to record down our simple dinner at this place called Sunny Restaurant at Chai Leng Park. It serves simple food, not those fanciful type, but the menu is quite extensive, with one page on food, and the reverse side for drinks. There was a lot to choose from, ranging from dishes to go with rice, or just one plate meal like what we had below. Not to mention, huge portion as well, for an average of price of RM4.50.

Singapore Fried Beehoon which was fried with tomato sauce, hence the reddish hue. Enough wok-hei, so this was good. The restaurant certainly didn't skim on ingredients, look at the abundance of it, be it prawns, charsiew or even vegetables.

My Minced Pork Rice that came with one whole hard-boiled egg, it was certainly too huge a portion to finish.

Together with 2 drinks and a side dish of Century Egg (which I didn't took a photo, sorry!), total came to less than RM20. Certainly can consider coming back again because best part of all, it's air-conditioned. Definitely a welcome relief from the scorching weather we experiencing currently.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Choux with Durian Filling

Was captivated by the puffy choux that Sonia shared on her blog, and it was oozing with durian pulp mixed with whipped cream.
The bonus was the topping called "Craquelin" - pronounciation in French as "kat-ker-leng". My first time coming across this interesting thin layer of brown sugar crumbs made up of butter, brown sugar and all purpose flour. Simple ingredients, but amazing results as it gave the choux a crispy crunch when consumed warm. It was also very fragrant as I was picking up the bit and pieces of crumbs that dropped off as I was making a slit in the choux for the durian filling.

I did half portion of the recipe and got 14 pieces, which was more than sufficient for the both of us at home. And luckily it was that quantity because it was very difficult to stop popping this Choux with Durian Filling one by one into the mouth until it was all gone.

For the detailed steps, kindly refer to Sonia's blog as she did a superb write-up sharing the recipe generously. Thanks Sonia.

Source: Nasi Lemak Lover
Yield: 14 pieces
60g milk
60g water
60g salted butter
2.5g sugar
125g eggs (2 A-size eggs, stirred lightly)
80g all purpose flour (sifted)

1/ Boil milk, water, butter and sugar together in a pot over medium heat.
2/ Remove pot from heat and using a wooden spoon, quickly stir in the flour until mixture combines into a ball.
3/ Return pot to low heat, stir content constantly until mixture leaves the sides of the pot and a film forms on the bottom of the pot, approximately 3-4 minutes.
4/ Transfer dough into a mixing bowl and stir till it reaches room temperature, then gradually add in the egg and mix till desired texture. [to check: scoop mixture up using wooden spoon, batter should hang down for about 20 seconds before dropping down].
5/ Fit batter into piping bag with a 1 cm piping tip and pipe with onto baking tray lined with non-stick baking paper with allowance of 2"-3" gap in between each mound.
6/ Top each piece of choux pastry with a small piece of Craquelin.
7/ Bake in preheated oven at 190 degree Celcius for 20 minutes without opening the oven door until choux pastry is all puffed up and browned.
8/ Transfer to a wire rack to cool.

35g butter
35g soft brown sugar
45g all purpose flour (sifted)

1/ Cream butter and brown sugar till light and creamy, then add in sifted flour to combine.
2/ Place Craquelin in between two plastic sheets and flatten into a thin sheet of 1-2mm. **
3/ Keep this in the fridge to harden.
4/ Remove from fridge when choux is all piped out and cut Craquelin into small square.
5/ Using a plastic spatula, transfer the delicate piece of Craquelin atop each mound of choux.

Note: I changed the method slightly from that of Sonia's in step 2 because I find the Craquelin hardens faster when it is a thin layer compared to one whole chunk.

70g non-dairy whipping cream
150g durian flesh (stir well with fork to break up the fiber and turn durian mushy yet creamy)

1/ Whip non-dairy whipping cream over high speed till it peaks, then add in durian flesh and mix well.
2/ Keep this chilled in the fridge before using.

Paired with a cuppa of "durian" coffee, would you like any?

The variety of durian I used, for reference - Buaya Mas at RM8. I anyhow picked up a box because there were just too many varieties on the shelf. It was not too sweet but very fragrant, though with a slight bitter end-note which was my preference as we would be savouring the balance of durian not used in the choux, thus I went with our liking.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Orange Marmalade

Curiosity drove me to try my hands on making Orange Marmalade. I remember this recipe piqued my interest when I first bought Amy Beh's [At Home with Amy Beh 2] way way back, and as usual, I completely forgot about it until few days ago when I was flipping through that recipe book again.

With oranges on hand, I quickly got my act together. The steps were easy to follow, just that it was time-consuming because it can't be rushed. Gentle heat was used throughout to ensure a good golden finish. Since I was just trying the recipe out, initial plan was to halve the recipe, thus using only 2 oranges to see how it turns out. But when I put the oranges into the pot with the required amount of water, the oranges were not covered totally by the water to enable it to simmer till skin-soft stage. So that prompted me to add one more orange, and it was just nice with some room to roam for the oranges in my pot. Recipe below is three quarter of the original recipe which I used to get this 400ml jar of orange preserve.

Source: Amy Beh [At Home with Amy Beh 2, page 227]
Yield: 400ml
3 large oranges (weighing 500g total) - washed and scrubbed clean
900 ml water
Juice of 1 lemon (approximately 3 tbsp)
375g granulated sugar
3/4 tbsp brandy/Cointreau (optional) *I omitted this*

1/ Put oranges and water in a large saucepan and bring to a boil then simmer uncovered over gentle heat for an hour or until orange skin turns soft.
*Do NOT use high heat as oranges will burst*
*To test if oranges are ready, use a satay stick to prick through the skin after boiling, if it can be pierced easily, the orange skin is soft enough*
2/ Remove oranges with a perforated ladle and leave them aside to cool slightly.
3/ Slice off four sides of the oranges *refer diagram* then cut the orange rind into very fine thin strips.
4/ Chop up the remaining orange flesh and return the chopped orange and sliced rind to the sauce pan together with the lemon juice to bring to a boil over moderate heat for 30 minutes until liquid is reduced by half.
5/ Add sugar, stir over gentle heat without boling to dissolve sugar completely.
6/ Bring content to a boil uncovered over medium high heat, stirring frequently for about 30 minutes till marmalade jells.
7/ Stir in liquor (if using) then fill orange marmalade into warm sterilised jars to store.

* Keep orange marmalade for at least a week before consumption for the flavours to meld together.

Monday, July 4, 2011

The Daily Grind

Located at Bangsar Village's ground floor was The Daily Grind, TDG in short where we had our late lunch the next day after Hoofed!. A name that we had wanted to check out for their famous gourmet burgers with patties of 180g pure meat made in-store. So for this trip, this shall be our only burger meal in lieu of Carl's Jr.

Had a hard time deciding which gourmet beef burger we wanted, as they all looked so good by the description. After like 10 minutes scrutinising the menu, we shortlist it to two - Japanese Yodel Burger rm35 or Avocado & Bacon Burger rm29. In the end, we were won over by the "Avocado cream with crispy turkey bacon and barbeque sauce" burger and this is what's on the next photo. Can you spot the juicy beef patty? I can't too but take my word, it was there. Burger was yummy, and it was made up of all meal without any fillers. Hubby was a happy camper for sure.

We only shared one burger because plan was to budget some calories for this Peanut Butter & Roast Banana Pie. At rm16, it was pricey, but oh-so-good. Those peanut butter piped atop the pie was the attraction. It looked like Kisses chocolate, don't they?

Worth a mention was their Ketchup and Chilli Sauce which The Daily Grind made in-house. Definitely not one of those run-of the-mill commercial type, and we love these thick chunky sauce to go with those fries.

Might want to return to try their other burger selections should we make another trip down south.

Dinner: Hoofed!

We made a hurried trip down to the capital city during the third week of June for the premier show of S.O.M. It was a weekday trip, so our only chance to have a decent dinner with cousin was on Monday and it was a late one. Thankfully our venue for the night opens till late, and we managed to try what had been on our list for about half a year now. It was none other than Hoofed! at Taman Tun.

Three of us only, so we decided on sharing to enable us to sample more food items from Hoofed!'s limited menu. Ya, the menu was not extensive but the 3 that we tried were awesome. Starting from this Smoked Duck Salad. Sitting generously atop the cucumber sticks and pieces of iceberg lettuce were the smoked duck slices which went very well with the oriental sesame oil dressing. As we tucked in more, we discovered that this restaurant had added century egg besides hard-boiled chicken egg into this salad. It was a good choice, I would say, eventhough initially we were like having second thoughts about this unusual food item in a salad. Ingenious!

Next came this unappealing-looking mains called Devil's Pasta. Despite the appearance, we chowed thism angel pasta down in no time. Partly because we were hungry, and the other part being this was really really good. The caramelised pork was still crispy after being stir-fried with some black soya sauce, and it blended very well with the thin strands of pasta.

Lastly came the highlight - Suckling Pig. We ordered the half portion priced at RM90, and even then, we had to doggy-bag half of it home because it was too sinfully rich. The first piece was excellent because the crackling was oh so crispy, then when tucking into the second, it does get a bit oily so that was where I stopped. I had it just as it was, without the accompanying sauce. Felt it tasted better that way.

Glad that we can now strike this off the food list having tried and tested it.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Cempedak Fritters

Durian season now, so besides the king of fruits, the durian trader would usually have other fruits like mangoesteen, rambutans and cempedak on sale as well. We prefer to eat durian at the stall so that the car would not have the lingering smell. And it is a totally different experience to be served durian than to do the hard work of prying open the thorny fruit. So I only bought mangoesteen and cempedak, which are going for quite good price now. The former was 3kg for RM10, and RM5/kg for the latter.

With cempedak, comes the fritters. This time also using recipe from the same book, but I modified it by leaving the amonia powder out. Outcome still as crispy, just that there was no bee-hive texture. To review past attempts, here they are: 2009 & 2010.

Adapted from [Traditional Kuih-Muih Step By Step by Mdm. Wong Sip Moi], page 7
Yield: 20 pieces
80g rice flour
1 tsp tapioca flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp amonia powder *omitted*
100ml water
1 tbsp oil

1/ Combine everything except the oil and let batter rest for 30 minutes.
2/ Just prior to deep-frying process, add in the 1 tablespoon oil into batter and mix well.
3/ Dip cempedak into batter and coat well, then lower into hot oil to fry till golden.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Passionfruit Chiffon Cake

Baked a Chiffon Cake this morning using passionfruit, a flavour I haven't attempted before. Very slight modification done because I won't know what to use the remaining 15g of passionfruit pulp for, thus easier to use it all up for the cake. The juice will be a good substitute for the water portion. Sweetness just perfect, with a slight hint of sour only.

Adapted from Alex Goh's [Fruity Cakes, page 40]
4 egg yolks
50g sugar
1/4 tsp salt
50g vegetable oil
55g passionfruit pulp *I used 80g of passionfruit pulp and omit the water as the passionfruit I used was quite big and juicy*
20g water

100g low protein flour *I used all purpose plain flour*
1/2 tsp baking powder

4 egg whites
100g sugar
1/8 tsp cream of tartar

1/ Mix the ingredients listed from the egg yolks till water together, then add in the sifted powders.
2/ Whisk egg whites till soft peaks, then add in sugar and cream of tartar to continue to whip till stiff.
3/ Add 1/4 of the meringue from step (2) and mix into mixture from step (1) until well combined, then add this new mixture into the remaining meringue and fold till evenly mixed.
4/ Pour into 22-cm tube pan and bake at 170 degree Celcius for 40-45 minutes.
5/ Invert cake till cool once it is removed from the oven.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Steam Butter Cake

Had some leftover Butter Cake batter after making some cupcakes, which came up to about 500g, so drawing inspiration from Alex Goh's [Magic Steamed Cake], I steamed it for a change.

Cake took approximately 45 minutes to get done in a 6" round baking tin which was covered with aluminium foil to prevent water droplets from creating dimples on the cake surface.

This Steam Butter Cake turned out very moist, but colour wise, I still prefer that of baked version. At least there's a brown top. In terms of taste, there were fine crumbs.

125g butter
80g castor sugar
2 A-size eggs
125g plain flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 tablespoon UHT milk

1/ Cream butter with castor sugar till pale and light, then add in one egg at a time until batter is fluffy.
2/ Spoon in the flour which has been sifted together with baking powder and mix using cutting motion with a plastic spatula. Alternate this with milk until both flour and milk has been used up.
3/ Level into baking pan and steam over high heat till a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean.
4/ Cool cake down completely before cutting.

Sour Plum Sauce Chicken

The word "quick" attracted my attention to this in MaryMoh's blog. Not only that, the ingredients used were very basic and available in my kitchen, so I did it right away. Did change the chicken parts used though, and I made this dish with half a chicken breast plus 3 chicken wings. The combination of different types of sauces made the chicken very flavourful, and best part - no oil was used! I thought I read the recipe wrongly, and re-read it, but indeed there was no mention of oil.

1/2 kg chicken
1/2 bulb garlic (peel removed and smashed)
2 tablespoon sour plum sauce
4 tablespoon ketchup
4 tablespoon light soya sauce
1 tablespoon oyster sauce
1 tablespoon sugar
3 tablespoon Shaoxing wine
250ml water

1/ Put everything into a deep pot and boil for 5 minutes on high then adjust fire to medium with lid on.
2/ After another 5 minutes, remove the chicken breast (if used) and continue to boil without the lid till sauce is reduced and thick.
3/ Turn off the fire and dish is ready.

I skipped the step of thickening the dish with corn flour solution (1 tablespoon corn flour to 4 tablespoon water), but add this after step (2) and bring pot to a boil again if one opts for this.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

A Kind of Tuber

This is a kind of tuber, but I didn't have a specific name for it to google for a recipe. So I did what I know best, to turn it into tongsui by just boiling with some screpine leaves and water, then flavour with some brown sugar slab.

It tasted like a cross between yam and sweet potato. Crunchy but not too starchy at the same time, don't quite know how to describe it. Added some big sago pearls, a lovely dessert which can be savoured hot or cold. We went for the latter due to the scorching heat we are experiencing currently. The purple hue is nice, don't you think so too?

Meatball Baked Rice

Did a Meatball Baked Rice 2.5 weeks ago using a simple white sauce which I googled online.
Easy steps involved: Cook the rice, grill the store-bought meatball, prepare the white sauce over the stove then mix everything together. Pour into a bake dish and sprinkle with shredded mozarella cheese and baked till golden perfection.

Best eaten with a dash of tabasco sauce to cut the creaminess. Below is the brand of beef balls I used in creating this one-'pot' dish.

Source: link
2 tbsp butter
2 tbsp plain all purpose flour
250ml milk
1/2 tsp salt

1/ Melt butter in a small saucepan over medium heat, taking care not to burn the butter.
2/ Add flour and stir till well combined, then pour in milk to continue stirring till it thickens.
3/ Flavour with salt and this is ready to use.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Old Town Kitchen at Kampung Benggali

Was brought to this place by a friend and her hubby, thus I didn't snap a photo of the food we sampled. But I still jot it down here for reference. The 3 of us had the Assam Curry Dory Fish - the spicy sour taste of the curry was fantastic, but I personally feel that dory is not very suitable in this dish. For meat dish, we had the Or Bak. It was Stir-fried pork with tiny slivers of ginger and black soya sauce. This wasn't oily at all, and the meat, tender. We had Bittergourd with Prawn in the vegetable section, tasted fine by me. As all the dishes came quite small portion, we added one more item, which was the Salted Fish Bone Curry. This was good as well. One thing to note is that I love their Iced Barley Milk drink, something I haven't came across elsewhere. The milky taste plus the bites from barley bits, this can get quite filling on its own.

Then recently, dh and me went for lunch to try their other dishes. First of all, the acar was fantastic. This place still does it like the olden days, which was to sun-dry the vegetables as part of the preparation process. Thus, the vegetables retain a crunchiness amiss in most acar we tasted at other so-called authentic nyonya food restaurant.

The Or Bak, doesn't look appealing but dh loves it.

The Assam Prawn was my favourite dish, with not overcooked prawns. Came with thick wedges of cucumber that had absorbed the tasty spicy gravy.

Lastly, Taucheo Fish for something non-spicy. Again, dory fish was used here, which makes me think that we should avoid ordering fish at this restaurant. Eventhough boneless, which makes eating it hassleless, I still strongly think dory is best used in Fish and Chips and not chinese dishes. But I must say the blend of tomato with taucheo was a good choice.

This is a nice place to visit for home-style cooking, and what I really like is its cleanliness. Orders came very fast as well despite the crowd.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Pandan Waffle

Made these Pandan Waffle for munching and give away. It was quite filling as I used coconut milk in lieu of whipping cream and milk. I also omit the melted butter called for in the recipe because coconut milk will turn into oil upon heating. Turned out still light and fluffy.

Yield: 8 pieces
300g plain flour
2 tsp baking powder
pinch of salt
2 tbsp castor sugar
500ml coconut milk
4 egg yolks
1tsp pandan paste

4 egg whites
1/4 tsp cream of tartar
1 tbsp castor sugar

1/ Sift flour and baking powder together. Add in salt and sugar then make a well in the centre.
2/ In a measuring jug, combine coconut milk and egg yolks.
3/ Whisk egg whites till frothy then add in the sugar and cream of tartar to continue whipping till soft peak stage.
4/ Pour the liquid content into the dry ingredients and mix till well, then fold in the meringue till mixture is homogeneous.
5/ Heat waffle griddle and make waffles.

Roti Bakar Kopitiam @ Taman Kheng Tian

This is good stuff! Way surpassing that of Old Town and Pappa Rich combined, which happened to be our craze in that order, but we had ditched them for Roti Bakar Kopitiam. Should have discovered them earlier because by the time we stumbled upon them, they have opened their third outlet.

The Nasi Rendang Chicken (RM 9.90) came with pandan rice, which was very fragrant. This is by far, the second place we have tasted Pandan Rice, the other being on the 4th floor foodcourt of Queensbay Mall. It is good to be eaten on its own, thus we had seconds of that at RM2 per serving. Rendang was finger lickin' good, not too spicy but flavourful. No choice of other cut of meat apart from chicken thigh, else this plate would have a score of ten from us.

Next interesting dish was Curry Chicken with Home-made Miku. The Miku came ala french toast style - a light coating of egg and shallow fried for a crispy exterior but yielding a pillowy soft centre. Dipped into the curry, this was a good choice for a light meal. At RM7.50, I think it was value-for-money because just look at the big serving of curry with lots of chicken and potato, won't you agree with me?

The Hot White Coffee which dh had was a big let down, while the Iced Honey Milk was too sweet. So much so that I had to keep stirring the drink to melt the ice faster, but that aside, it was a fragrant cup of cold drink that suits the weather perfectly. RM3 and RM4.20 correspondingly. Coincidentally we were so lucky to be entitled to 50% off beverages when we dined there as they were having promotion for a limited time to launch their new menu.

Food wise, it was sumptious. Drinks surely need improvement, especially the coffee. But overall, I know we would return to try their other items because everything on the menu looks delicious.