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Showing posts from November, 2009

Double Boiled Herbal Chicken Soup

Double boiling is slow cooking ........ means to put a soup pot or any covered ceramic or steel pot inside a bigger pot, immerse in boiling water, and let the soup cook at a lower temperature.  Hence the soup is cooked from heat generated from the boiling water and not from direct heat source.

Double boiling lets the soup ingredients slowly release their nutrients into the soup, thus making it tasty and wholesome.  It's a long cooking process, roughly averaging 2 to 4 hours.  The tip is not to open the cover to check on the soup as it'll bring down the temperature and affect the cooking process.  The plus point is there's little evaporation and the soup will not boil over.  The only thing is to monitor that there's enough water in the bigger pot and not let it run dry.  Of course, nowadays, the slow cooker is another alternative to double boiling, saves the hassle of checking the water level.

Steamed Garoupa

Fish is best eaten steamed as it retains all the natural sweetness of the fish, more so if it's fresh.  Steaming time is important.  I normally steam my fish for 8 minutes, both for fillet or whole fish, but if the fish is much bigger, another minute or two will suffice.  Over steamed fish is rough, tough and not tender and silky.





steamed garoupa in the steamer, ready to be served on the table





fish is done when the eyes pop out ....... mmm.... the cheeks are the best part of the fish, chewy






and for those who love to eat fish, they will say that the best part of the fish is the belly .......


Recipe for Steamed Garoupa

Ingredients
350 gm Garoupa
10 gm young ginger, chopped
Salt and Light Soya sauce to taste
Olive oil and pepper

Garnishing
Spring onions, chopped
Sprigs of Parsley

Preparation
Wash and clean the fish of scales
Lighly make 2 diagonal slits on the fish
Season it with some sea salt,
chopped ginger, inside out
Add in 2 Tbsp of water
And 2  Tsp of light soya sauce
Steam under rapidly boiling …

German Apple Cake

This cake is suitable for morning coffee or afternoon teas, or serve warm for dessert.  Even after being baked, the apples are still crunchy and yummy.  This not too sweet cake can keep for 2 days.


The apples are peeled, quartered and cored, cut into thin slices but not all the way through and  arranged on the batter, cored side down.  Sprinkle with some brown sugar and cinnamon as soon as the cake comes out of the oven.


mmmm...... isn't it lovely





Recipe for German Apple Cake


Ingredients
120 gm Butter/Margarine4 oz Caster sugar8 oz Self-raising flour2 eggs1/2 cup milk/soymilk3 medium green apples, peeled, quartered and cored1/2  Teasp vanillaCinnamon and Brown sugar for sprinkling on top of the cakeMethod
Cream butter with sugar till light, fluffy and thickAdd in eggs one at a time and beat well.Fold in sifted flour, alternating with soymilk, start with flour and end with flour.Spread batter over bottom of slightly greased and floured 21 cm, round springform tin.Cut quartered apples int…

Yam Rice aka Wu Tau Farn

Yam, a tuber, creamy or firm when cooked, has an earthy, hardy taste and usually a minimal amount of sweetness.  It's a good source of potassium, a mineral that helps to control blood pressure, manganese, carbohydrates, fibre and vitamin C, B1 and B6.
A high intake of vitamin B6 has been shown to reduce the incidence of heart disease.  Also vitamin B6  has been a popular supplement with respect to premenstrual syndrome (PMS) in women, especially in conjunction with the depression that can be triggered by PMS.  Being rich in fibre, yam fills you up without filling your hips and waistline!
Cooked this one pot meal recently and I love yam, cooked in whatever form, including 'Poi' ... a Hawaiian word for the primary Polynesian staple food made from yam/taro.  Poi is produced by mashing up the cooked yam to a highly viscous fluid.  Water is added during mashing and again just  before eating, to achieve a desired consistency.  It's best eaten with fingers and scooping up the p…

Steamed Tofu with Fish Paste

Tofu ...... a solid form of beancurd is one of the healthiest foods that can be included in our diet.  Just as cheese is derived from milk, tofu is derived from soybean milk and it was first made in China about 2,500 years ago.

Tofu is low in calories, high in protein and B vitamins, contains iron and no saturated fat.  This makes it an excellent substitute for meat in many vegetarian recipes.  The calcium in tofu contributes to the prevention of osteoporosis.  An additional benefit of tofu is that it's extremely easy to digest, especially for the elderly and young children because the soybean's fibre is removed during the manufacturing process.  It also lowers the 'bad' LDL cholesterol level, rich in isoflavones, which will reduce the risk of  breast and prostate cancer.

They come in different textures, silkier or softer ones more suitable for soups while the hard or firm variety can be stir-fried, cubed or grilled.
















rather bland on its own, but it has the ability of abso…

Hakka Mee aka Hakka Noodles

This is yet another one dish meal, Hakka Mee/Hakka Noodles. These noodles are quite similar to Won Ton Noodles, except that they  have less lye water and the noodles are a bit flat and thicker.  They're served with bean sprouts with a generous serving of minced meat sauce.






the noodles, ........... need to loosen them up before cooking











serve with chilli sauce topped with chopped garlic ..... that will do the trick ..... yummy!


Recipe for Hakka Mee aka Hakka Noodles

Ingredients
180 gm Minced Pork
60 gm Garlic  -  chopped
200 gm Bean Sprouts
4 dried Chinese mushrooms - soaked and diced
3/4 cup water
1 Tsp cornflour + 3 Tbsp of water
3 servings of Hakka noodles
Oil for frying.
Garnishing  -  Chopped spring onions

Seasoning for minced pork
1/2 Tsp Salt
1  Tsp sugar
1  Tbsp  Fish sauce
1  Tsp dark soya sauce
A dash of pepper

Preparation
Saute the chopped garlic with 1 Tbsp oil, fry till fragrant
Add in the seasoned minced pork, diced mushrooms, stir-fry
Add in the water, simmer
Once the meat is cooked, thicken…

Stir-fry chicken with wood ear fungus

Wood ear fungus or 'Muk Yi', does resemble an ear, and they grow on the trunks and barks of mostly dead trees.  They are a good source of nutrients, full of vitamins, low in calories and most important, inexpensive.
Besides having medicinal benefits and lowering cholesterol, the fungus also acts to prevent blood clotting, which is therefore a must  have for mothers in confinement after child birth.

The fungus is flavourless, has a slightly crunchy, rubbery texture which is retained even after cooking.  It is favoured in Chinese cuisine, in soups, stuffings or stir-fries.  Adding wood ears to meat dishes enhance the flavour as they absorb the liquid in which they are cooked, taking on the taste of the other ingredients.






dried Wood ear fungus  ...... wash, soak for about 10 mins., then rinse, soak again for another 1/2 an hour till they puff up in size.  Trim off the hard parts and slice.












a very suitable dish for mothers in confinement



Recipe for stir-fry chicken with wood ear fungu…

Almond Crisps

True to its name, these cookies are really crispy and crunchy.   Have them with coffee, tea or just munching in front of the TV ..... not to worry, almonds are healthy nuts!








Recipe for Almond Crisps

Ingredients
4 oz Butter/Margarine3 oz Caster Sugar5 oz Self-Raising Flour - sifted1 egg yolk3 oz nibbed Almonds1/4  Tsp VanillaMethod
Cream together butter and sugar till light and fluffy.Add in the egg yolk, vanilla, followed by the sifted self-raising flour.  Mix into a soft dough.Form dough into a log shape, cut into 24 equal slices.  Shape into rounds and coat with the nibbed almonds.Place about 1 inch apart on the baking sheets.Bake in preheated oven at 180 deg C for about 20 minutes or till golden brown.Cool completely on a wire rack before storing in cookie jar.Note
If dough is too soft to handle, chill it in the fridge for about 1/2 an hour or until it's firm and not sticky.

Bok Choy and Wolfberry Soup

The Wolfberry fruit is a red-orange berry, part of the tomato and chilli pepper family.  Also known as Goji or Chinese Wolfberries, they are grown in the north west part of China.  Good quality wolfberries has a natural red colour, is in good shape and do not stick together.  They are mostly sold in dried form, usually consumed after cooking or chewed like raisins.  The Chinese use them in dishes, soups or boiled as a tea.
The berries are believed to be high in antioxidants, calcium, iron, zinc and vitamins B1, B6, C and E.  They can help reduce the risk of kidney and liver conditions, strengthen teeth and bones, relieve certain eye conditions like cataract, retinopathy and help slow down the process of premature aging.
Wolfberry is not for treating diseases, instead its main health benefit is to nourish our body and the following soup recipe is indeed refreshing and nourishing.


wolfberries or goji, bok choy, beancurd sheet and chicken stock make up this nourishing soup




Recipe for Bok Cho…

Stir fry chicken fillet with sweet bean

A simple dish of chicken fillet with sweet beans, red capsicum and carrots.... stir fry.  Quick and easy to whip up for lunch or dinner, goes very well with white rice.





 colourful enough to whet the appetite  ........





Recipe for Stir fry chicken fillet with sweet bean

Ingredients
180 gm Chicken fillet - sliced
80  gm Red Capsicum - cut
150 gm Sweet Beans
100 gm Carrots - sliced
3 pips Garlic - chopped
1  Tsp Cornflour mixed with 3 Tbsp water
2  Tsp Shaoxing Wine
Oil for frying
Salt to taste

Seasoning for Chicken fillet
1  Tsp Oyster sauce
1  Tsp Sugar
1  Tsp Sesame Oil
1/2  Tsp Salt
Dash of Pepper

Preparation
Saute the chopped garlic with 1.1/2 Tbsp oil till fragrant
Toss in the seasoned chicken fillet, stir fry
When the fillet is more or less cooked
toss in the carrots, sweet beans and red capsicum
Sprinkle with some water if the dish is dry
Thicken the gravy with cornflour mixture
Add salt to taste, turn off  heat
Add in 2  Tsp Shaoxing wine
Dish out and serve hot



Mango Cake

When I saw Elin's Dimply Mango Cake post in her blog, I told myself that I must try it  as mango is also one of my favourite fruits.  However, I tweaked it a bit, reduced the sugar, butter and the end result is also a yummy cake, especially  the delicious mango flavour.  It's quite a unique combination, have not seen this cake being sold commercially.  Hats off to Elin and thanks for sharing!



arranging the mango slices on the cake takes a bit of effort ......








the yellow bits are  the mashed  mango which certainly enhance the flavour of the cake




Recipe for Mango Cake


Ingredients
6 oz Plain Flour2  Tsp Baking Powder1/4  Tsp Salt60 gm Butter/Margarine4  oz Brown Sugar2  eggs1/3 cup Canola Oil1.1/2  Tsp vanilla3 oz mashed mangoMango slices from about  2 medium size mangoesMethod
Sift the plain flour with the baking powder, salt, set aside.Beat butter and sugar till light, thick and creamy.Add in the eggs, one at a time.Slowly add in the oil, vanilla, mix well.On low speed, add in the ma…

Purple Sweet Potato Cake

Has anyone seen green potatoes before?  I haven't and don't think anyone has.  But my cake turned out to be green!  There must be some metamorphosis in the baking process .......... purple plus brown sugar and egg which is yellow.  I used the purple sweet potatoes that I bought from Cameron Highlands and mistakenly used brown sugar which should have been caster.
Before I put the cake in the oven, the batter was still purplish and voila I was pleasantly surprised to find a green cake staring at me upon opening the oven door.  Nevertheless, my neighbour savoured some and he said it was  unique and tastes good.


topped with chopped walnuts







Mmmm ..........  green with envy ................. but yummy


Recipe for Purple Sweet Potato Cake

Ingredients
13 oz mashed sweet potatoes (purple ones in this case)12 oz Plain Flour1 cup Canola Oil4 eggs2  Tsp Baking Powder2  Tsp Baking Soda1/2  Tsp Salt7  oz Brown/Caster sugar4 Tbsp chopped Walnuts - to put in bottom of Bundt tin1  Tsp Vanilla8 Tbsp w…

Glass vermicelli with dried shrimps and mince meat

A typical Cantonese dish ..... 'Tai Yee Mah Kah Looi' aka Glass vermicelli with dried shrimps and mince meat.  What a hilarious name!  It literally means 'maternal elder aunt's daughter getting married'!  I don't seem to find any connection with this dish.  Had asked my mum why it was named as such but she couldn't provide me with an answer because those days, recipes were just handed down, no questions asked.


It's a very simple, economical, quick and easy no-frills dish to put on the table.  Normally this dish does not require any meat, but I added some mince pork for that extra taste and to make it more wholesome.






'chit kua' or 'mow kua', 'mow' is the fine hair on the gourd, which can sum up to as 'hairy gourd', is an integral ingredient of this dish, so is the dried glass vermicelli, which needs to be soaked to soften




dried shrimps and mince meat make up the other ingredients for this dish






Recipe for Glass vermicelli with …