Thursday, July 28, 2011

Lemon Mint Drink 薄荷柠檬饮

It was crazy hot in New Jersey the last two weeks that all I wanted was a glass of cold drink, and chill!!

The only good news is that the mint in my garden is growing so well, and it is great for making this chilly refreshing drink!


Wednesday, July 27, 2011

【扁豆焖面】French Bean Braised Noodles

A friend of mine lease a small piece of land from her husband's company as part of the company's social responsibility program. The land is only meant for activities that could enhance the environment. They then decided to plant some vegetables.

Last two months were interesting for most gardeners in NJ, my friend and I shared information and progress of our gardens and now we share our crops!

She and her husband are both from the northern part of China, thus the French bean they planted is also a northern Chinese species called flat French bean (扁豆).

It is known to be the best bean to make this typical North western Chinese dish -- Steamed noodle. Where the beans are first stir fried, and then boil to bring up steams with noodles lightly spread over the dish to cook, the steam from the gravy will steam cooked the noodle and later to season the noodle. This cooking method allows the noodles to stay in form and retain it's springy texture, a very easy and tasty one pot meal







300-400 gm French Bean (Use the shop bought version if you can't find this Chinese Version)
3 Bunch of dried noodle (approximately 300 gm) Note: You can use fresh, uncooked noodle too.
4 Thick cut Bacon (Or thin sliced pork belly marinated with a little cooking wine and salt)
2 tbsp Minced Garlic
1 tbsp Minced Ginger
2-3 tbsp Chopped spring onion
2 green chilies(Optional)
2 tbsp Soy sauce
1 Star Anise
Salt to taste (Around 1/4 tsp)
A pinch of Pepper powder

3 把干面条 (我用了杂粮面,有手擀面更好,如果用手擀面,请用和扁豆一样的重量。)
4 片 厚 Bacon (熏肉/培根)(代替五花肉切片加料酒和老抽腌腌的做法)
2 tbsp 蒜蓉
1 tbsp 姜蓉
2-3 tbsp 葱花
两根 青辣椒 (Optional)
2 tbsp 酱油
1 只八角

1. Clean and remove the rough string at the side of beans, break it into about 2 inches long, shorter if you prefer softer beans.

2. Mince ginger and garlic,slice chili length wise or cut it into slices, chop spring onion. Slice bacon into about 1 inch thick.


3.Heat up a wok or a deep bottom cook ware, DO NOT add oil, cook bacon until fat/grease release, and push aside cooked bacon, remove some oil if you want it leaner.

4. Now add star anise, minced ginger, and half of minced garlic, half of chopped spring onion, stir fry until fragrance.

5. Add French bean, and stir until the colour changed, about 2 minutes. Add 2 1/2 cups of water, the beans should all submerged into water, bring to boil, add soy sauce, salt to taste. Scoop out a big bowl of stock, approximately 1 cup worth, and leave aside.

Note: If fresh noodle is used, add only 2 cups of water for cooking.

6. Add the remaining chopped spring onion and minced garlic into stock, stir well.

7. Turn heat to medium now, and loosely spread noodle over the beans, cover with lid, and cook for 5 minutes. After 5 minutes, use a fork or chopstick to lightly loosen up the noodle, spread half of the stock over the top of noodle, as evenly as possible. Cover with lid and cook for another 5 minutes again. Repeat the same process for the remaining stock, and cook for another 5 minutes or until all liquid almost dried out.

8. At the end, add some pepper powder, and turn beans and noodle with help of chopstick and spatula, till well mix, turn off the heat and cover with lid, let the noodle sit for another 5 minutes before serving.

9.You could blend together 4-5 cloves of garlic, add some Chinese dark vinegar and soy sauce as a dipping sauce to this noodle.

2. 先热锅,不下油,把培根煸炒出油,然后把培根推开一边,掏出一点油不用。然后把八角,姜蓉和一半的蒜蓉,一半的葱花倒入煸炒香。加入扁豆和辣椒,炒至变色。

3. 倒入两杯半的水没过扁豆,煮滚,加入酱油和盐调味。用汤勺掏出一大碗的汤汁,备用。


4. 把剩下的蒜蓉和葱花倒入刚刚盛起的汤汁里拌匀。中火保持锅里的汤汁中滚,把干面条分散,铺在扁豆上,加盖煮大约5分钟,打开,把已经有点软的面条用筷子弄散,把刚刚盛起的汤汁一半浇在面条上,再加盖焖煮5分钟。再重复一样的动作,把剩余的汤汁浇上,再加盖焖煮至汤汁减少。

5. 最后打开盖,撒点胡椒粉增加香气,把面条和扁豆拌匀,熄火,加盖虚焖5分钟。


欢迎到我的新浪博客玩 -- 

Monday, July 25, 2011

Roasted Baby Potatoes with spices

The first batch of Potato I put in my garden are flowering now,its about time to check out some baby potatoes to make this really delicious dish.

There is no comparison to fresh potato from your own garden, really!!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Goan Fish Curry

Goa is the smallest state located in south west of India. Its culture is  a mix of east and west due to the Portuguese ruling in 1500s. The eastern influence is not just in the culture, also the cooking.

Seafood is the main cooking ingredients there, as well as major source of protein.

As I grew up eating seafood, Goan dishes was one of the very first Indian dishes that I liked, and still do!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Ma-Po Tofu (麻婆豆腐)

I love a bowl of Ma Po To Fu over hot steamy rice, a good plate of Ma-po tofu is usually very spicy (as in chilli heat) and has a strong characteristic of "Mala", the numbing sensation came from Sichuan Pepper (花椒) used in preparing this dish.

The combination of these two spices are so addicting that I always have a box of Sichuan Style minced meat ready in the fridge, so that I could always cook this dish in under 20 minutes!

Monday, July 18, 2011

Cucumber Mint Lassi 黄瓜薄荷酸奶昔

It's mid summer and it's also harvest time for cucumber. It is fascinating how nature has it, the coolest produce's harvest time is also the hottest of the seasons!

When the temperature outside reaches 90-ish these days, I decided to go out to my garden, pluck a cucumber and a handful of mint leaves. Chill them a little in the fridge. And blend them into this cooling and ever so refreshing Cucumber Mint Lassi, and I thank nature for what it provides!



Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Glutinous Rice Wine Ginger Chicken【姜酒鸡】

This is a traditional confinement dish for the Fujianese/Hakka clan of Chinese. We the southerner add glutinous rice wine in all our confinement foods. It is believed to be good for the mother and help to recover from childbirth.

Though it is mainly meant for confinement, my mum will sometimes make this dish for our meals.

It's been quite sometime since I had this dish and since I have a couple of bottles of Red Yeast Rice Wine I made in the pantry, I made this dish for lunch to share with a friend, both of us enjoyed it very much.




Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Homemade Fish ball Amaranth Soup

Its summer time and my Amaranth at the back yard is growing so well, I have been thinking of a bowl of fish ball Amaranth soup since the day I sow the seeds!

I waste no time to make this soup with the Fish and Turkey Fish paste I saved up from making Stuff Chilli the other day.

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