Monday, February 28, 2011

Vegetarian Steamed Tofu

It's been a month since my colleagues and I ordered our vegetarian set lunch. The catered vegetarian meal is solely based on vegetables and tofu, no MSG and with very less processed food. Throughout the catering, I got some inspiration to cook more vegetarian dish at home. This is one of them.

Vegetarian Steamed Tofu
Serves 2

1 block of tofu
1 tomato, diced
1 dried mushroom, soaked and thinly sliced
a thumb-sized Sze Chuan preserved vegetable, soaked, drained and cut into strips

1 tbsp of plum sauce
1 tbsp of light soy sauce

1 red and 1 green bird's eye chili, chopped

1. Cut the tofu into pieces, and arrange on a heat-proof plate.
2. Arrange tomato, preserved vegetable and mushroom surrounding the plates.
3. Pour the seasonings over the ingredients.
4. Steam it over boiling water for 5 minutes.
5. Garnish the tofu with bird's eye chili, and serve hot with rice.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Cajun Roast Chicken Wing

Roasted chicken wing is such a tempting finger food. However, I try to limit my intake of chicken wing after I read the steroid injection to the wing of chicken. Since then, I consume more on free range chicken.

In years, this is just my first time buying chicken wings from the wet market. This is also my first time  using chicken wing since I'm into home-cooking for the past 3 years. My main goal is to test the flavor of Cajun through the roasting. And the verdict? Yes. But, I felt sinful after 2 chicken wings. :(

Cajun Roast Chicken Wing

8 chicken wings
1 tbsp of olive oil

1 tbsp Cajun
Pinch of salt
Dashes of black pepper powder
1 tbsp of light soy sauce
1 tbsp of honey
3 cloves of garlic, peeled and minced

1. Marinate the chicken wing overnight in the fridge.
2. Preheat oven at 180 deg C.
3. Brush a baking pan with olive oil.
4. Arrange the chicken wings in the baking pan.
5. Roast the chicken wings for 30 minutes under 180 deg C.
6. Sprinkle dashes of Cajun on the chicken wings, and pour olive oil onto each of the wings.
7. Get it roasted until brown.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Fried Threadfin Salmon / Kurau

Fish is a good source of Protein. Although, frying process added certain Calories to the fish, but I still prefer fried fish than steamed fish. 

I don't usually fry fish at home. It just happen once in a blue moon. Hubby love fried fish, and he seldom get to savor home cooked fish. Well, since I got some fresh Threadfin Salmon from my mom, so I marinated the fish fillet with salt and turmeric powder. It was then shallow-fried till crispy. It's best served with sambal belacan. This is my favorite way to consume fish. How about you?

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Bitter Gourd & Chicken Stew

I've been so busy at work since January this year. Sometimes, I reach home quite late, and exhausted. So, to be frank, I didn't spend much time to cook dinner now a days. Even if I were, I'll just cook one dish which combines meat and vegetable to serve with rice. Bitter gourd and chicken stew is one of them. 

Soy bean paste is good to reduce the bitterness of the bitter gourd. Stew the bitter gourd together with chicken and seasonings, the outcome is pretty impressive. With this dish alone, our dinner becomes flavorful. 

Bitter Gourd and Chicken Stew

Half of bitter gourd, cored and sliced horizontally
Half of free range chicken, chopped into pieces, and skinned
1 tbsp of goji berry, soaked in water for 10 minutes and drained.
500ml of water
2 tbsp of cooking oil
1 tbsp of soy bean paste
6 cloves of garlic, peeled and smashed
1/2 tbsp of oyster sauce
1/2 tbsp of dark soy sauce
1 tsp of brown sugar
light soy sauce to taste (optional)

1. Heat oil in a wok. Saute garlic till fragrant. 
2. Add chicken and soy bean paste to fry for 2 minutes. Add bitter gourd to mix.
3. Pour in water and cover the wok. Leave it simmering for 10 minutes.
4. Add oyster sauce, brown sugar, dark soy sauce and light soy sauce to taste.
5. Leave it simmering till sauce thickening. Dish out and sprinkle goji berry on top of it.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Garlic Bread

Broccoli soup seems too plain to serve on its own. So, I paired it up with garlic bread. It will never go wrong to serve garlic bread with Western styled soup. 

Everyone has their own version of garlic bread, so do I. I like to keep my garlic bread as simple as possible. You can see my garlic bread was toasted to perfection. Its flavor is enhanced by roasted garlic, butter and mixed herbs. The texture is so crunchy and it smells fantastic.  Garlic bread and broccoli soup, that was our simple and healthy dinner.

Garlic Bread
Makes 7 slices

1/2 French loaf
3 tbsp salted butter
1 bulb of garlic, peeled and finely chopped
mixed herbs

1. Slice the French loaf diagonally.
2. Spread a layer of salted butter to each loaf slice.
3. Preheat the oven at 180C for 5 minutes.
4. Spread the chopped garlic to each slice of loaf and arrange them on baking pan.
5. Sprinkle mixed herbs on the loaf slices.
6. Bake the garlic bread for 8-10 minutes under 170 deg C.
7. Serve hot with your favorite soup.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Garlic Brown Rice

Last Sunday, we thought of having a roast duck. I'm not skillful enough to process a duck from scratch, so the only option is to buy a half of ready made roasted duck from the nearby wet market. Then it saved all the cooking time. But then, if to serve the duck with white rice, it sounded a bit boring. So, I cook a pot of garlic brown rice to enhance the rice flavor. After all, this was our easy peasy Sunday meal.

Garlic Brown Rice
Serves 4

1 3/4 cups of brown rice, rinsed and drain
1 bulb of garlic, peeled and chopped
2 tbsp of vegetable oil
600ml of water
1/2 tsp of salt

1. Heat oil in a wok, sauté garlic till golden yellow.
2. Add rice to stir-fry for 3 minutes. Off the fire.
3. Transfer the rice to rice cooker pot.
4. Pour in water and cook under "brown rice" program using my micro-computer rice cooker.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Broccoli Soup

It was quite a boring Chinese New Year's eve. My in law's are not celebrating the new year due to grandma in law passed away in a week before the Chinese New Year. Nothing much to enjoy during this festival. After a simple family dinner, I spend my time watching Asian Food Channel. Coincidently, I spotted one simple recipe from Chef At Home. Micheal Smith cooked a tempting broccoli soup on the show.  Immediately, I jotted down the ingredients and get ready to cook it when I get back home. :) So, I'm here to share this delicious soup with you. Enjoy!

Broccoli Soup
Serves 2

1 onion, peeled and chopped
3 cloves of garlic, peeled and chopped
1 broccoli, get the stem sliced and the rest cut into florets
1 potato, peeled and julienned
400-500ml chicken stock (adjust based on your preference)
shredded cheddar cheese
olive oil

dashes of black pepper powder
dashes of nutmeg powder
salt to taste

1. Heat up generous amount of olive oil in a saucepan. Sauté onion till soften, and add garlic to combine.
2. Add julienned potato and stir-fry.
3. Pour the chicken stock into the saucepan and bring for simmering.
4. Add broccoli stem to the soup. Leave it simmering till the broccoli stem turn soft.
5. Leave the soup cooled before blend it into smooth texture.
6. Return the soup to the saucepan. Add broccoli florets and bring to a boil.
7. Add seasoning to taste. Off the flame and add in shredded cheddar cheese. Serve hot.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Chai Boey 菜尾

Days ago I got a leftover roasted pig trotter from a praying ceremony. I can't think of a way to consume it, except utilizing it on a dish called Chai Boey. When translated to dialect, Chai Boey means leftovers of a meal. Hence, it is a dish combines all the leftover food into a sourish and spicy soupy dish that is stewed for hours. 

Anyway for my version, I didn't use left overs, instead I combine with all fresh ingredients and spices. See the outcome of the stewing process? Looks tempting? I'm mouth-watering now by just looking at the photos, hehe...This is my top pick.

Chai Boey

800gm of green mustard, washed and cut
2 tomatoes, diced
3 dried mushrooms, soaked, drained and quartered
a handful of dried chili, soaked, de-seeded and cut into half
1 roasted pork trotter, chopped into pieces
5 pieces of tamarind pieces (asam keping)
3 stalk of lemon grass, smashed the white portion
4 cloves of garlic, peeled
7 cups of water

light soy sauce to taste

1. Bring water to a boil in a pot. Add lemon grass, garlic, dried chili, tamarind pieces, and pork trotter. Leave it simmers for half and hour.
2. Add green mustard and mushroom. Leave it simmers for another 45 minutes to 1 hour under low heat. Stir occasionally.
3. Add tomato and light soy sauce to taste. Serve hot with steamed rice.


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