Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Nasi Lemak With Dry Curry Prawns


When there is a craving for coconut milk rice, I will not hesitate to cook it for our lunch.  As there is no dried anchovies in the fridge, I took out a packet of frozen prawns from the freezer, run to the wet market and bought the fresh ground curry paste to cook this wonderful dry curry prawns to go with the coconut milk rice which our local called it Nasi Lemak.  Hubby's favourite dry curry prawns..mine too actually. I made some onions and carrot pickles to go with it. The sunny side up is cooked by the hubby.  He is a good cook too, at less he cook a sunny side up right.   I made it even more special by placing banana leaf on the plate before serving.  The banana leaf from my lil space :)


I cook the rice with coconut milk, slices of ginger
and screwpine leaves for a more fragrant nasi lemak

lessen water so that the rice is not soggy


banana leaf before plating

I made some onion pickles as a side to go with the nasi lemak






Nasi Lemak With Dry Curry Prawns

Nasi Lemak /Coconut Rice recipe
ingredients:
3 cups rice wash and change water 3 times, soak in water 30 mins
3 slices ginger, julienned
4 blades pandan leaves, knotted
2 cups water
1 cup coconut milk
1 tsp salt

Method:
Add 2 cups water with rice, mix with ginger and pandan leaves, steam over medium heat for 20 mins. Add salt with coconut milk. Add 1/3 of coconut milk into rice, fluff rice with chopsticks. Continue to steam for 5 mins. Add in the balance coconut milk, continue to steam for 5 mins. Remove steamer from heat and set aside.



Dry Curry Prawns recipe
1/2 kilo large sea prawns- deveined but keep the shell and head
fresh ground curry paste specially for dry curry from wet market
( I asked the lady to give me enough for 1/2 kilo prawns )
1 stalk serai - crushed
3 to 4 tbsp of olive oil 
2 twigs of curry leaves
6 shallots - sliced
1/2 cup of coconut milk
Method:
Heat up wok . Add 3 to 4 tbsp of olive oil , add in the fresh ground curry paste , sliced shallots, crushed serai and currry leaves....saute till olive oil rises to surface and aromatic.  Add in the prawns  and continue to stir fry till the prawns are cooked and the curry paste coats the shell.  Add in 1/2 cup of coconut milk and continue to cook till the gravy thickens and the prawns are coated with the paste. Remove from heat and dish up.



Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Avocado Pasta


I have read many times online regarding this interesting avocado pasta....ermmm at first I was not really keen to try it , but even if curiosity kills the cat, I have to try it out.  And since it is avocado season, and having some left after making guacomole, I gave this dish a try and I would say it is interesting. Flavourful creamy sauce coated every string of spaghetti, it is simply delicious. Yes, I would definitely cook this again.  Firstly it is delicious and secondly it is healthy.  The avocado sauce is creamy and every bite is so delicious with the basil flavor bursting in the mouth.  I have basil grown in my little space. All I need to cook is the spaghetti.  The rest is blended raw. A very healthy meal indeed.  I am surprised hubby WB loves it too.  Being a meat eater, this is really surprising! It must be darn good for him to partake this vegetarian meal :)




Avocado from the Philippines

seed of avocado is big so not a great buy after all

blends the avocado with basil leaves, garlic,black pepper, salt
and olive oil and a squeeze of lemon
blend till it emulsified


add to the spaghetti and give it quick stir till
every string of spaghetti is well coated with the
avocado sauce

served with avocado slices or cherry tomato
or any vegetables that you like

Avocado Pasta

 ingredients:

spaghetti for two person  -  cooked till al dente
2 ripe avocados - halved, seeded and peeled
1/2 cup fresh basil leaves
2 cloves garlic
2 tbsp of lemon juice
salt and black pepper to taste
1/3 cup olive oil

garnishing
1 avocado - halved, seeded and peeled - cut into slices
basil leaves 

Method:
1. In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook spaghetti till al dente, drain well.
2. To make the avocado sauce, combine avocados, basil, garlic and lemon juice in the bowl of a food processor; season with salt and pepper to taste. With the motor running, add olive oil in a slow steam until emulsified; set aside.
3. In a large bowl, combine spaghetti and avocado sauce till spaghetti is well coated with the sauce.
4. Garnish with avocado slices and basil leaves.
5. Serve immediately. 

Enjoy!



Monday, April 16, 2018

Guacamole


Guacamole is a dip made from avocados which originates from Mexico. The name is derived from two Aztec Nahauti words - ahuacati ( avocado ) and molli (sauce).   To make a simple guacamole, you can just add salt and pepper and a squeeze of lemon juice to help balance the richness of the avocados. But, I love mine to have chopped tomato, cilantro, chilli and chopped red onion. These combination of ingredients really is a WOW! Can be addictive .  My daughter loves this and it is her all time favorites.  She will eat for supper too at times when she has to work late into the morning :)

I managed to get some Philippines avocados which are kind of small and have big seeds. Bland in taste but great for making Guacamole.  Great as a dip and side dish for my seafood meal.  I pan fried fish and fish roe and this flavorful guacamole was the perfect side dish for my seafood meal. 


these were on offer in Jusco
and I grabbed 6 pieces


 once the avocados has ripen, its time to make guacamole,
the combination of these ingredients turned
the guacamole into a flavorful side dish


I like my guacamole to have chunky bits of
everything...perfect as a side dish


 tip- prepare the guacamole last as the avocados will turn
slightly brown if you prepare them early




Guacamole 

ingredients

3 avocados
1 ripe tomato - remove seeds and diced
2 tbsp of chopped cilantro (stem and leaves)
2 tbsp of chopped red chillies
Some chopped garlic *optional
half red onion - diced
1 tbsp of lemon juice
salt and black pepper to taste

Method:

1. Cut the avocados in half, remove seed. Score the inside of the avocado with a blunt knife and  scoop out the flesh with a spoon. Place in a bowl.

2. Use a fork , roughly mash the avocado ( do not overdo it, the guacamole should be a little chunky)

3. Add in salt and pepper and mix well. Add in the rest of the ingredients except tomato and give it a quick stir. Wrap up with cling wrap and chill before serving. Chilling the tomato will hurt their flavor. Add in the chopped tomato just before serving.

Enjoy!


Friday, March 16, 2018

Steamed Egg With Sea Clams (Vongole)





If you have been following me all these 10 years, you would have known me well enough to know that I love any kind of seafood.  Gosh, 10 years...that is like quite a long period of time to be blogging and sharing all the food that I have cooked these 10 years.  Blogging has taken a back seat ever since photography has taken a big portion of my time. For those of you who have been folowing my blogs these 10 years, I would like to say thank you for all your support and patience.  Your supports encourages me and have given me lots of happiness beside cooking and baking :)  My four kids (my Piggies)  and hubby (Wildboar ) are my supporters too.  Giving me a LIKE each time I posted my food photos on Instagram and Facebook :)

I shall not digress and here is what I had cooked for last night dinner.  Saw some very fresh and large sea clams or vongole, I bought home a kilogramme This is a dish that needs only a few clams but needed the broth for the steamed egg.  I steamed the 1 kg of clams and managed to get just 160 ml of broth. thick and sweet .  To make it more tasty , I added a dash of chinese cooking wine, a tsp of ginger juice to the broth .  This is a keeper and will make this dish again for sure.  Simply delicious and appetizing than the normal steamed egg.  Hubby needless to say, make more next time, maybe a pie dish each.  The size of this pie dish is 7inches in dia and 1 1/4 inch deep.  Perfect for this recipe for 2 persons.



 seven steamed clams  to fit this into this pie dish


 make sure to use heat resistant cling wrap
to cover the dish before steaming


 for this recipe, time of steaming under med. heat
is 10 mins...set timer to get the correct smooth texture


love the smooth and wobbly texture and every mouthful
is simply heavenly


Steamed Egg With Vongole

 ingredients:

For broth
1 kg sea clams - soak with salt water to remove mud and sand

7 large sea clams
2 large eggs - beaten
160 ml broth - you can use chicken stock ,but I used the broth from the steamed clams
1 tsp of chinese cooking wine
1 tsp of ginger juice
a pinch of salt - not too much as the broth from the clams has a bit of salty taste

sliced spring onions for garnishing

Method:

1. Soak and wash clean the clams for 30 mins, remove , drained off excess water.  Put the steamer to boil.  Place the clams in a deep dish and steamed for 10 mins or till the clams are half opened.  Take out 7 large sea clams . Drain the broth from the dish into a measuring cup.  The rest of the clams can be kept in a container and keep in fridge for other cooking. 

2. Beat the 2 eggs in a deep bowl.

3. Measure out 160 ml of broth and pour into the beaten egg , add in chinese wine, ginger juice and salt.  Sieve the mixture to get a smooth egg mixture.  Pour the sieved mixture into the 7 inches pie dish, add in the steamed clams and arrange the steamed clams to fit nicely on the egg mixture.  

4. Cling wrap the pie dish and put into the boiling steamer. Reduce heat to medium and steam the egg mixture for 10 mins.  Before lifting out of the steamer, tilt the dish and if the egg custard is firm , you can off heat and take out the dish.  It is ready for serving.

5. Remove cling wrap and garnish with sliced spring onions. 

Enjoy!





Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Braised Stuffed Potato With Sour Plum Sauce


Potato is the family's favourite food.  Today I want to share this easy to prepare dish, something very different from the usual way of cooking. It is braised stuffed potato with sour plum sauce and fermented bean paste.  Simply delicious.  The filling is made up of a few ingredients namely minced pork, chopped beancurd puffs, bonito flakes, chopped spring onions, chillies, cornflour, and sesame oil. I added the chopped bean curd puffs to the minced pork is to add character and keep the meat filling moist.  I will definitely make this dish again as braising the stuffed potato in sour plum and fermented bean paste truly allowing the bland potato to absorb the flavors.  I allowed the sauce to thickens and the sauce is enough to coats each stuffed potato . 

Slice the potato into 1 cm thickness, after which slice the 1 cm thick potato in the center but do not cut through. Stuff the filling into the potato like how you make Yong Tau Foo. 


fillings consists of minced meat,  bean curd puffs, spring onions
chillies, bonito flakes, sesame oil, cornflour - stir together
till the meat mixture is sticky

to prevent the potato from turning dark, soak in lightly salted water-
drip of excess water before stuffing in the filling


make sure to dust cornflour before stuffing in the fillings
so that it acts as adhesive or the meat fillings will drop off


deep fried the stuffed potato till cooked and lightly
browned


lightly braised in sour plum sauce till the flavorful
sauce is absorbed into the potato











Braised Stuffed Potato With Sour Plum Sauce 

ingredients:

4 med sized Holland Potato -

Filling ingredients
250 gm minced meat - pork or chicken
2 bean curd puffs - chopped
1 tsp of soy sauce
some bonito flakes
some chopped spring onions
chopped bird's eye chillies - amount depends on individual taste
1/2 tsp of sesame oil
1 tsp of corn flour

extra corn flour  for dusting

1/2 cup vegetable oil for deep frying the stuffed potatoes

sauce
2 cloves of garlic - chopped
2 tbsp of sour plum sauce
1 tbsp of fermented bean paste ( tau cheong )
1/2 cup water

thickening
2 tsp of corn flour
2 tbsp of water

Garnishing
coriander leaves

Method:

1. Scrub , clean and peel potato. Slice them into 1 cm thickness.  Cut a slit in the center of the 1 cm thick slices but do not cut through. Soak in lightly salted water for 5 mins to prevent darkening. Pour off water and place the sliced potato in colander to drip dry while preparing the filling.

2. Put all the filling ingredients in a deep bowl and using a fork , stir them together till sticky and well mixed.

3. Take a sliced potato , open up the center slit, dust with cornflour and stuff with the prepared filling, like how you make Yong Tau Foo. Repeat the process till all the sliced potato are used up.

4. Heat up 1/2 cup of vegetable oil in a deep frying pan over medium heat. Once the oil is hot, gently add in the stuffed potatoes and deep fry them till cooked and slightly browned.

5.Dish up and keep aside . Pour out the oil into a bowl, leaving just  a tsp of oil in the pan, add in chopped garlic and stir fry over medium heat till fragrant, add in the sour plum sauce and fermented bean paste and continue to stir fry till well mixed. Add in water and give it a quick boil. Add in all the deep fried stuffed potatoes, cover with lid and let it braise under medium low heat for 15 mins.  Add in the thickening. Once the gravy has thicken and all the stuffed potatoes is coated with the thick gravy, Off heat and dish up. Garnish with coriander leaves.

Note: if you want  more gravy, adjust water and add another 1/2 tbsp of sour plum sauce, 1/4 tbsp of fermented bean paste .

Enjoy!


Monday, March 5, 2018

Stir Fry Pork Tenderloin With Cincalok


Stir fry pork tenderloin with Cincalok is a Nyonya dish combining pork, cincalok ,a South Asian ingredient ( fermented small shrimp/krill ), tamarind paste , fried crispy shallots and chilli . All this ingredients comes together to make this dish with the right notes - full of umami flavour.  Though the smell of fermented krill can be offensive to some but it can be a delight to some.  Lucky for me , the family loves it and I use them in making kimchi and a condiment ( combine cincalok, slice shallots , slice chilli and lime juice )  for fried fish. 

We are not Nyonya but my grandmother and mom used to cook this dish when I was young and that is how I acquired the taste for this dish.  The deep fried crispy shallots adds oomph to the dish plus the cut chilli gives it a bit of heat. A very appetising dish indeed and hubby always look forward to this dish.  Looking back it has a been a while since I last cooked this dish :)  Hope you guys will be inspired to try out this recipe.



 Stir Fry Pork Tenderloin With Cincalok

ingredients:


600 g of pork tenderloin - sliced thinly- season with 1 tsp of soysauce and 1 tsp of cornflour
5 bird's eye chillies - sliced
6 shallots - sliced and fried till crispy
2.5 tbsp of cincalok
2 tbsp of tamarind paste mixed with 1/2 cup water
1 tsp of sugar
2 tbsp of vegetable oil

Method :

1.Heat up 2 tbsp of oil in wok, once oil is hot, add in the sliced shallots and fry till crispy and golden brown. Dish up and keep aside.
2.Using the same oil, add in cincalok, chillies and stir fry till fragrant, add in the seasoned sliced tenderloin and continue cooking till the meat is cooked.  Add in chillies , tamarind water and sugar.  Continue to simmer till the gravy has thicken . Add in the crispy shallots last.  Off heat and dish up. Serve with rice.

Enjoy!


Friday, March 2, 2018

Stir Fry Roast Pork With Leek


What do you do with the leftover roast pork especially the home roasted ones?  After the CNY pre dinner we had some leftover roast pork belly and since I had some China leeks which I bought from Tesco, I decided to stir fry the roast pork belly with the leeks.  Simple to whip up and full of flavor.  We love the sweet aroma from the leeks.  A perfect pairing with the leek.  One can never go wrong with this pairing.  Ever since I learned how to make my own roast pork from home, having delicious meal at home is something hubby and I looked forward to everyday.  And recently, I read that roast pork is one of the top 10 most nutritious to have in our diet....how far it is true, we shall see. Whatever it is, Chinese roast pork is still one of the most delicious and sought after in every chinese family :) whether it is bad or good for health.  Because it is darn delicious on its own or stir fry like what I have whipped up a dish of roast pork and leek.

just this two main ingredients is good
enough to whet ones appetite


stir fry with chopped garlic and a slice of ginger
will give you a dish smelling good and taste yummy

you don't need any other dishes ..this is a well
balance dish.

Stir Fry Roast Pork With Leek

ingredients:

some roast pork belly - cut into slices
a few stalks of China leeks - sliced
a few cloves of garlic- chopped
a slice of ginger
a tsp of white pepper
salt to taste
1/2 tbsp of vegetable oil

Method:

Heat up a tbsp of oil in a deep non-stick pan.  Once the oil is hot, add in the chopped garlic, ginger and stir fry till fragrant.  Add in the roast pork and continue to stir fry for a few minutes and as the roast starts jumping in the pan , add in the sliced leeks and continue to stir fry till well combine, add in white pepper and salt to taste.  Add a tablespoon of water.  Once the leeks has soften, off heat and dish up.  Serve with hot rice.

Enjoy!


Thursday, February 22, 2018

Roast Pork


I remembered the first time that I made my own roast pork  was 3 years ago when my boy came back from Singapore for his year end break . He actually requested for it and mommy Piggy cannot say no. A challenge I took up and I used Sonia's first original recipe before she updated her recipe.

3 years later , I made it again but this time , I used Sonia's updated recipe .  The taste is really good and I have a new tool to prick the skin of the pork belly. The more prick holes the better, it helps the skin to crackle up more. I managed to get it from one of the crockery shop in town.  The roast pork is one of this year pre CNY dinner dish.  Love the crackling skin of the roast pork and the beautiful flavor which Sonia has recreated and has updated on her blog . A keeper for sure :)


this new prick tool is more solid and makes 
pricking so much easier compared to the previous
I had which has a plastic handle


after seasoning the pork belly, sprinkle salt on surface
and let it rest in fridge over night with skin 
facing up and uncovered


I am happy with this piece of roast pork that I made
for our pre CNY dinner

Roast Pork - Updated version from Sonia

Ingredients:
3 kg pork belly , with skin on
3 tbsp salt (prefer normal and cheap salt )

Dry Rub
3 tsp garlic salt 
2 tsp salt (perfer normal & cheap salt)
2 tsp + 1/2 tsp Chinese five spice powder
1 tsp ground white pepper

Method:

1.  Try to have a flat and even level of pork belly( for even browning when roasting) by cutting off those extra meat underneath).  Blanch the pork in a pot of boiling water for 5 mins.
2.  Remove and wipe dry with paper towels.
3.  Prick the skin all over with a prick tool ( picture of tool shown above) , the more holes you can make the better.
4. Then use a sharp knife to lightly score the skin.
5.  Massage the dry rub into the meat. For the skin, rub the salt and just leave the excess on the skin.
6. Place pork on a wire rack, uncovered, place in the fridge and let it dry out slowly overnight.
7.  Preheat the oven to 200C. Place the prk , skin side up, on a wire rack in the oven, and place a tray underneath to catch the drippings.
8.  Roast for 30 mins at middle rack and then switch the oven from bake to grill function ( upper heat only ) increasing the temperature to 230C. Grill until the skin is evenly blistered and browned (around 50 mins)
9.  Remove to a wire rack to cool slightly. Cut into long strips then slice and serve warm.

 Enjoy!


The Haunting At Kellie's Castle: Truth or Fiction?




 pic credit: tripadvisor

I’ve heard a lot of stories about Kellie’s Castle. Some say it is one of the most haunted places in Malaysia, some say it has the most beautiful architectural heritage ever. So, which one is it? I’m not much into telling scary stories in my page, I can’t say that I really believe or not the thought of something living among us that we cannot see. I’m not undermining those who believe in it and I can’t say I’m a believer myself. I think it depends on perspective. So, now, Kellie’s Castle, what’s the story?
 
Kellie’s Castle is in Ipoh, you can get there by either driving yourself if you are already in Malaysia or take a plane ride there. You can find Malaysia Airlines offering a route to Ipoh and you can easily book the flight ticket at Traveloka. I’ve been hearing about them a lot lately since the KL2017 and Asia’s Got Talent. I got curious and checked out their site and mobile app - just wanted to see what’s so different. Turns out, they have cool features that I find convenient to use. I’m not going to explain it here though, you can go check out their site and look it up.

So, Kellie’s Castle was built by a Scottish planter named William Kellie-Smith. From what I read online, some say he built this castle as a gift to his wife. Talk about competing with Taj Mahal, right? Another side was that he built this castle as a home for his son. Which is the truth, who knows? So, if you haven’t seen or know about Kellie’s Castle, it’s a huge castle that looked very aesthetic in terms of its architectural essence. The castle was built of Scottish, Moorish, and Tamilvanan Indian influence.

  pic credit: tripadvisor

70 craftsmen from India worked on this castle and seemed very fond of Mr Kellie-Smith for his generosity towards them. The story took a sad turn though when William died of pneumonia at the age of 56. He had fallen ill during his trip to Lisbon, Portugal in 1926. By the time of his death, the construction was still going on. His wife was too devastated to stay and returned to Scotland. The castle was left unfinished.
 
And the haunting story goes…

I did a little digging on some of the stories people have documented when they visited the place. One common story was that when they visit the castle at night, they saw the apparition of Mr William Kellie-Smith himself wandering around the castle - looking for his wife. Chills, man. Some say they also saw other family members of the Smith family, particularly his daughter in one of the rooms and the bathrooms. International paranormal investigators even considered this castle to be haunted. I’ve never been to the castle myself, so I can’t say for sure if I believe it to be haunted or not.

From the looks of it, yeah, it does have that haunted castle vibe to it because of its age and the structure of the castle itself. Any old castle looks haunted when it’s been abandoned for so many years. It’s no surprise why people feel the chills when they come across this place.

  pic credit: tripadvisor
 
A beautiful ruins…

Looking past the image of a haunted castle, Kellie’s Castle has a very aesthetic structure. The form is so beautiful. It has all the original influence of India and European mixed into one. Although the castle was not fully finished, just from the front, you can see how intricate the designs are. I find it fascinating when I first look at the picture of the place.

The rooms inside was decorated in a way that is suitable for tourist, of course. The statue of himself built by the craftsmen was still there too. The view from one of the rooms in the castle was breathtaking. I must say, maybe I’ll take a trip there sometime and let you know if there’s anything weird going on there. If you are one of those people that love the paranormal activity, you can probably go there too. If you are the one that loves architectural ruins, you can probably go there too. I think what makes Kellie’s Castle stand out is the fact that even if it’s haunted or not, it is still a good historical place that holds its own unique story to it.


Hotpot And Grill At Home


Hotpot and Grill has always been the family favourite ' cook yourself meal '  .  For us, it is a time of having good food and great bonding time while waiting for the food to be cook.  Of course this is one of the highlight of Chinese New Year 2018 dinner for the Piggies family.  We had grill and hotpot at the same time.  I love the grill more as I can have my korean style of eating..grilled meat wrapped in lettuce with kimchi and roasted seaweed sheets.  This year is a bit special as I have added canned wild Abalone for the hotpot and Scallops for the grill. It was a well balanced meal with lots of delicious meatballs (pork and beef), tofu and fresh grey oyster mushrooms , pork butt slides (very tender as it is perfect for hotpot and grill ) and we had large sea prawns and golden promfet to complete the seafood galore. Not to forget the crispy beancurd skin and chicken sausages (Ayamas brand) We had a great time not just tucking in the food but the great bonding time is enjoyable too. 


canned wild abalone  and scallops

 

when the soup is boiling, just blanch the ablone and scallop for
3 mins and they are ready for consumption..easy and delicious

 

thick and succulent canned wild abalone...yummz

 

 not to forget the crispy beancurd skin


Ayamas sausages too the hubby...grilled ones taste good
 

grilled scallops...yummz
 

sea prawns smell good when grilled


not to forget eating the grilled seafood and meat slices 
wrapped in lettuce with kimchi and roasted seaweed
 

my all time favourite korean style of eating grilled meat
 

try putting the whole lump of wrapped lettuce 
in your mouth .... different flavors bursting 
inside your mouth as you chew on them
yummz
 

a must have side dish..homemade kimchi


crispy and crunchy fried garlic  and oil
a must have for hotpot for the Piggies
 

this is the whole spread of raw ingredients for our 
hotpot and grill....nothing beats having this 
at home which we often refer to  'cook yourself meal '


Have a great day and thanks for dropping by!


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