Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Bacon Pumpkin Parcel

A simple and easy to whip up starter...Bacon Pumpkin Parcel .  It is just simply a few slices of japanese pumpkin wrapped in streaky bacon and pan fried till bacon turns crispy on the outside and pumpkin slices are cooked till tender.  A smooth and sweet pumpkin puree goes well with the bacon pumpkin parcels. I love the simple outlook yet full of flavors.  As the parcels are being  pan fried, drizzle rosemary infused oil on the gives out a beautiful aroma of the rosemary herb. I absolutely love every bite of it.  This is what I like to serve  my Wild Boar with.  A meat eater who does not really like pumpkin can give it a thumb up...that shows it is really good.  A keeper for sure...try it to believe me.  The Japanese pumpkin puree is so smooth and creamy...a good accompaniment for the bacon pumpkin parcels.

japanese pumpkin is best for the making of this starter
as it has a smoother texture and not  overly sweet 

place two slices of pumpkin  on top of two strips of streaky bacon
start folding from the left to  the right

tuck in the end part under and pan fried with the  tuck in end part facing down


now the parcels are ready for pan frying
use rice bran oil for the pan frying of these parcels

gently flip over when the bottom part has turned lightly brown
and cooked till the pumpkin slices are cooked tender 

make a pumpkin puree from the leftovers of pumpkin

 this is a perfectly pan fried bacon pumpkin parcel,
when the bacon is crisp on the outside and the pumpkin slices are  not overcooked

Bacon Pumpkin Parcel - for two persons

6 slices of streaky bacon
6 slices of 1/8 inch thick pumpkin slices - cut rectangle shape

To make pumpkin puree
1 cup steamed pumpkin - puree with a hand blender till smooth
strain to remove any remaining stringy pieces. For a smoother texture, add in 1/2 tsp olive oil

To make rosemary induced oil

a sprig of rosemary - coarsely chopped
a tsp of toasted ground black pepper
2 tbsp of rice bran oil

* heat up 2 tbsp of rice bran oil, off heat , add in  rosemary herb and black pepper and let it rest for 30 mins before using

To wrap the bacon pumpkin parcel

1. Lay out two slices of streaky bacon overlapping each other on a flat board  . Sandwich 2 slices of pumpkin together and place them on the left hand side of the layout streaky bacon .  Start folding them towards the right and tuck in the end. Repeat the process till all bacon and pumpkin slices are used up.

2.  Heat up one tbsp of rosemary infused oil on a non-stick pan.  Gently place the tucked in side facing down and pan fried the bacon parcels till it is crispy and golden brown.  Flip over the other side and as the bacon parcels are cooking drizzle the rosemary infused oil over the surface of the parcels till the pumpkin slices are cooked through.

3. Dish up and serve with the pumpkin puree.


Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Deep Fried Gyoza With Century Egg And Pickled Ginger And Meat Fillings

Gyoza are mostly pan fried but for this once, I decided to deep fried them because I have been craving for deep fried stuff of late.  I used rice bran oil for the deep frying . The fillings for the gyoza are special and I replicate it from the ' Pei Tan Quinn ' ( beancurd rolls with century eggs and pickled ginger ) from the dim sum shop.  Instead of using beancurd skin, I made my own gyoza skin. I find making my own gyoza skin is fun and therapeutic  :)  I had fun making them and I succeeded in making gorgeous looking and tasty deep fried gyoza.  To get good pleats, lots of practices are needed as the saying goes practice makes perfect :p

I love the fact that century egg and pickled ginger is added to the meat and prawns fillings lifting it to the next level of taste and sophistication.  These deep fried gyoza are flavor packed and may involved a bit of work especially if you have to make the gyoza skin yourself.  But of course, there are ready made ones from the supermarket.  I prefer to make my own gyoza skin  :) and make my own pickled ginger (young  ginger are home grown too )

easy to make gyoza skin

minced meat and minced prawn mixture, century egg and pickled ginger
make up the fillings for the gyoza

love the fact that century egg and pickled ginger
are added to the meat mixture before wrapping
and pleating the gyoza

make sure to dust potato flour on the gyoza before
stacking them together

you can freeze the gyoza for keeping

the century egg and pickled ginger, they add extra punch to the flavor

Homemade Gyoza Wrappers - adapted from JustOneCookbook


240 g all purpose flour or ( 120g bread flour + 120g cake flour )
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup or 120g just boiled water plus more if necessary ( 120g - 150g )

potato starch for dusting
3" (8cm) cookie cutter


Stir the flour in the bowl, scoop it up with a spoon into the 1-cup measuring cup, and level off the top. Put the flour into a medium bowl. The amount of flour shoud be close to standard 4.25 oz (120 g) per cup.

Sift the flour into a large bowl.

Add salt to just-boiled water and mix until completely dissolved.

Add the just-boiled water into the flour little by little, stirring with a rubber spatula. You will eventually need to use your hands to form the dough into a ball. If the flour is still separated, add ½ Tbsp. water at a time till you can form the texture into a ball.

Transfer the dough to the work surface and knead the dough for 10 minutes.

After 10 minutes, the texture of the dough will be much smoother. Cut the dough in half.

Shape each half into a long log, about 1½ inches in diameter (it doesn't have to be perfect if you’re going to use a cookie cutter later). Wrap each log with plastic wrap. Let it sit for 30 minutes.

Unwrap the dough. Sprinkle a little potato starch on the work surface and cut each log crosswise into about 12 pieces (may vary depending on the log length and width). Since we’ll be using a cookie cutter, don’t worry if each piece of dough has slightly different size.

Cover the dough with damp kitchen towel at all time to prevent from drying.

For each piece of dough into a ball shape.

Press the ball onto the work surface.

Using a rolling pin, roll out the dough, but DO NOT roll out (flatten) the TOP and BOTTOM edge. This is a trick to make a nice round shape.

Rotate the dough 90 degrees and repeat rolling the dough to make a nice round shape. Try to roll out the dough to a thin circle. The size should be bigger than 3” (8 cm) cookie cutter.

Press down the cookie cutter and remove excess dough. Cover the scraps with the damp towel. Later combine all the scraps as long as they still squish together and haven’t dried out too much. Re-roll the scraps and repeat the process.

Sprinkle each wrapper with potato starch and stack the gyoza wrappers. Make sure to the wrappers covered with damp kitchen towel. Once all the dough is used, wrap the gyoza wrappers with plastic wrap and freeze or refrigerate until you’re ready to use. You can keep gyoza wrappers for about 3-4 days in the refrigerator and up to a month in freezer. Defrost in the refrigerator prior to use.

Note: Different brand of flour will absorb water differently.


200 g minced meat
100 g minced prawns
1tbsp soy sauce
1/2 tsp sesame oil
1/2 tsp corn starch

mix the above ingredients together in a bowl and using a pair of chopsticks stir till the mixture become sticky

1 century egg - shelled and cut into bite sizes
pickled ginger

To wrap the gyoza

Scoop a heap tbsp of the minced meat fillings together with bite sized centruy egg and a few slices of pickled ginger on to a piece of gyoza pastry skin, and fold over and pleat the edges. Repeat till all the gyoza skins and meat fillings are used up.  Heat wok with rice bran oil ( amount enough for deep frying ). 
When oil is heated, gently drop wraped gyoza into hot oil , 3 pieces at a time, under medium heat till both sides are brown and crispy.  Take out and place them on paper towel to absorb excess oil. 

Serve hot with mayonaise dip or chilli sauce.


Anderson Seafoods – How to Cook Salmon, Shrimp, and Swordfish

Cooking fish has never been easier. It doesn’t matter whether you want to cook shrimp, salmon or sword fish – you’d be surprised at the amount of options that are available and how easy they are to cook. Anderson Seafoods wants to provide you with the best dining experience possible, so find out here how you can cook salmon, shrimp, and swordfish at home!

Cooking with Salmon

Salmon, if it is Blueback Salmon, has a very mild flavor and it is moderately fatty. It is most fresh if you buy it from June to November. If you were to go for Pink Salmon, you would find that this is the smallest variety and it has a very fine texture. Salmon can taste relatively mild in terms of its fishy flavor, but this more comes down to the food you use to cook with it.
The key to cooking great salmon is to not overthink it. The first thing you’ll want to do is rub the fillet with some oil, salt, and pepper. After this has been done, cook the fillet for around 5 minutes for every half-inch you have. Check the fish at around the 8-minute mark and when it is flaking easily, you know that it is cooked perfectly. Alternatively, you can fry it, sprinkle it with some fresh pesto, gremolata and herbs. Serve with a glass of white wine for the ultimate dining experience.
1.       Take the skin off the salmon with a sharp knife
2.       Brush the salmon fillet with oil on both sides
3.       Season with black pepper and salt
4.       Fry the fillet on a griddle pan for around 3 minutes on each side
5.       To finish, add pesto, hollandaise sauce and serve with vegetables and potatoes

Cooking with Shrimp

If you would like to know how to prepare and cook shrimp, the first thing you need to do is know how to peel it. Start by opening the shell from the belly along the inside curve and peel it back starting at the head. Then, cut a slit down the back side and use a knife to find the vein. Lift out the vein, rinse it under cold water, and then you can cook it. The vein is the intestinal tract, so it’s important to know that this can leave an unpleasant taste if it is not taken out.
Shrimp doesn’t need much preparation other than de-shelling, so read on for cooking instructions.
1.       Bring a saucepan with salted water to boil
2.       Add shrimp and cook for around 3 minutes, until the shrimp is opaque
3.       Drain shrimp and rinse it under a colander
If you want to grill your shrimp instead, try this method.
1.       Thread the shrimp onto a skewer
2.       Add peppers and mushrooms
3.       Over a medium coal, cook for around 8 minutes until the meat is opaque

Cooking with Swordfish

Swordfish has a very sweet but a very mild flavor. The meat is very firm and it is very meaty rather than fishy in the way that it tastes. This makes it superb for grilling. To get started, heat up a grill to a medium high heat and add the fish. Most of the time your fish will be a fillet and without skin.
1.       Whisk oil, mint, lemon juice, basil, and garlic in a bowl
2.       Blend the above products
3.       Brush the fish with around two tablespoons of the sauce

4.       Grill the steaks for around 3 minutes a side, depending on the thickness 

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