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Saturday, June 25, 2016

Homemade Char Siu 叉燒肉

Char Siu or BBQ pork is probably the most loved Chinese dish all over the world. The secret to a successful and mouth smacking Char Siu is the marinade and the length of marination time !

You could create similar rotisserie effect at home by using, guess what? Paper Clips! 



Sunday, May 22, 2016

Nian Gao Spring Roll 三色年糕卷

I made Nian Gao/Traditional Chinese New Year Cake the way my grandmother has done years back during Chinese New Year this year. It took me a good 15 hours to make the Nian Gao the traditional way. It was tedious and hard work, but it paid off eventually. 

Nian Gao made the traditional way will not become moulded fast and could be stored in cold dry place for years. It also tasted so much better and the texture much Chewier. 

We normally eat Nian Gao deep frying with coated batter, I am trying a new way today using a spring roll wrapper, I have to say that I actually like this one better!




Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Pumpkin Kuih Lapis 南瓜九层糕

I have always thought Kuih Lapis a local Malaysian snack, it was known to me as 9-layered kuih (九层糕 in Chinese)for a long time. I later learnt that not only the Malaysian, the Singaporean, Indonesian, Thai and Vietnamese all have similar versions of this cake, the difference are mostly on the ratio of rice flour and starches.

I have also learned that 9-layered cake is a specialty made in Hainan and Canton province in China during festive seasons. Its name implies "longevity and growing upwards" It is also something that is made only for prayers and serves only to family members. It is not to be shared with outsiders as luck and prosperity should be preserved within the family.

As its name suggested, there should be nine layers in this kuih, hence I designed my recipe based on that. It is normally made with food coloring (red being the most common choice) in my country. I made mine with pumpkin for its sweetness and bright color, I am really pleased with the color!

For those who has been following my blog, you would have noticed that I had been experimenting with ground rice instead of rice flour in recipes lately. My Chee Cheong Fun (steamed rice rolls) project got me obsessed to ground rice, the texture and taste a freshly ground rice provides is simply out of the world. It is truly worth the while and it is hard to go back to the ordinary rice flour now.

我一直以为九层糕是马来西亚专有的娘惹糕点, 出国后才发现其实很多国家都有类似的糕点,用的材料也都近似,不外是米粉和淀粉以不同的比例蒸制而成。

【佛山、南海一带民间喜庆节日,尤其春节,家家必做九层糕,取其“长长久久,步步高升”之意。九层糕是 一种甜米糕,做工讲究。民间用白米浸透,用石磨磨成水粉,搅拌成浆,加入糖水,用铜盘放一层薄水粉,加热蒸熟,然后逐层加粉至九层。蒸熟的九层糕层次分明,软滑可口。

有些人还用食用色素掺入,每层红白相间,十分好看。[1] 节日期间,人们将蒸好的九层糕切成菱形小块,每四块叠成一盘(三块在下,一块在上),先敬神、后敬祖先,然后是全家吃糕。取其吉祥之意。春节时,人们往往以松糕、年糕、煎堆、油角互赠亲友,但九层糕则不赠与别人,据说分给别人会把吉祥分薄,于己不利。[1] 层匀美观,软滑可口,乳香甜润。】资料来源:

我自从做了纯米肠粉之后,对自磨米浆有了新的认知和喜好, 自磨米浆做的糕点带有清新的米香,口感更柔滑,放置至第二天还是软软QQ的,简直让人欲罢不能。


Thursday, May 12, 2016

Claypot Lou Shu Fun 瓦煲老鼠粉

Lou Shu Fun/老鼠粉 (“rat noodles”) also known as Ngan zham fun/银针粉(“silver needle noodles”) is a kind of noodle made of rice flour and some starches, it is short, springy and somewhat translucent in color.

One popular way to serve this noodle in Malaysia to make it a clay pot dish, clay pot retains heat well and makes the dish more appealing.



Friday, May 6, 2016

Traditional Chee Cheong Fun 纯米猪肠粉

Years back in my hometown, there was this lady riding a motorcycle with a big metal box selling her homemade Chee Cheong Fun every morning. Her Chee Cheong Fun was soft, smooth and full of rice fragrance (米香)with a slight touch of sourness. Her sauce was a good balance of sweet and salty, together with fried shallots and roasted sesame, her chee cheong fun performances an orchestra of flavors in the mouth, it was very addictive.

My parents normally purchased her Chee Cheong Fun only over the weekends. I get real excited waking in the morning to see packets of Chee Cheong Fun sitting in the cupboard ready for breakfast.

Unfortunately, she stopped selling Chee Cheong Fun due to her health condition. I can no longer enjoy a packet of her Chee Cheong Fun now when I visit my hometown.

I did, though, encountered good Chee Cheong Funs at different places over the years. But none, came close to what this lady has made. There is something about her Chee Cheong Fun that I can't forget. A sense of pureness and simplicity that machine made Cheong Fun can't replicate. It comes only through years of day-to-day hard work, melding with patience and care, an art and heritage.

With that in mine, I wanted to recreate the kind of Chee Cheong Fun I missed. I tried many recipes online and was disappointed most of the times. But I learnt something new every time. I did, finally came to a formula that my palate agrees. It is made with only rice, water, oil and salt. No cornstarch, wheat starch and tapioca flour added.

I present you : A simple tale of steamed rice rolls. Just like how it should be, long long time ago.








Thursday, May 5, 2016

Spaghetti Naporitan/Ketchup Spaghetti スパゲッティーナポリタン

I had Spaghetti Naporitan the first time as an exchange student in Japan 20 years ago. I thought what I had was Italian food for the longest time, not until I went to Europe that I realized that it was actually a Japanese food in disguise!

Spaghetti Naporitan is pan-fried spaghetti seasoned with ketchup, which makes it a very easy and quick dish to make since there is no preparation of meat sauce needed.

My son A is a big fan of ketchup and often asked for fries/nuggets for dinner so that he could have them with ketchup. 

I made this spaghetti for him one day with the Teton Waters Ranch cooked uncured beef polish sausage that I bought from costco. (It’s made with 100% grass-fed beef (no hormones, no antibiotics, no feedlot) , there’s NO added nitrates and is less saltier than other sausages in the market.) 

It was an instant hit, A had it two nights in a roll and was loving it!

我第一次吃这款番茄沙司意大利面是中学时到日本做交换生的时候,当时一直觉得自己吃的就是正宗的意大利面。很多年以后才发现这其实是日式意大利面的做法。这款意大利面是用番茄沙司/ketchup 调味而不是传统的番茄肉酱。配料一般加的是切片的香肠,洋葱,青椒丝等等。 


我上周末在costco买了Teton Waters Ranch的Cooked uncured beef polish sausage,它是草饲牛肉做的,不含有荷尔蒙,抗生素,硝酸盐等等的添加剂。味道口感很好,比一般的香肠低盐。我给拿来做了番茄沙司意大利面,俊宝很爱吃,连吃两个晚上都没意见哦!

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Rava/Rawa Idli (Semolina Steamed Cake)硬麦蒸糕

Semolina is the coarse wheat middlings of durum wheat -- a kind of hard wheat, it is normally used to make pasta in the west.

It is also used a lot in India to make different kind of Indian snacks such as this Rava Idli, Rava dosa, Kesari (A kind of dessert.).

Rava Idli is easy to make, very healthy and tasty!

Semolina 是把麦磨成面粉的过程中产生的一种类似胚芽的颗粒,一般用来做意大利面,蛋糕,和很多其他的糕点。


Monday, May 2, 2016

Beijing Zha Jiang Noodle (老北京炸酱面)

Zha Jiang Mian literally means "Fried Sauce Noodles", a northern Chinese dish consist of thick wheat noodle and topped with ground pork stir-fried with fermented soy Sauce and Sweet Sauce (甜面酱), it is normally served with plenty of seasonal vegetables, which makes it a lot more nutritious and healthier.

I now make this noodle once in a while and learnt to enjoy it with a clove of garlic, just like the locals do in Beijing.


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