Friday, May 30, 2014

Black Locust Blossom Pancake (槐花餅)

My friend LR whatsapp me last week asking if I know a edible flower called "Huai Hua" (槐花), a black locust blossom that is widely eaten in some part of China. He told me these blossoms are everywhere in this season near where I stayed and it could be eaten raw in salad or made into different kind of dishes. 

He also invited me to go pick some of these flowers from the nearby woods with him over the weekend.

The thought of finding edible wild plants fascinate me, I immediately jump on the bandwagon and brought mom with me. We had so much fun enjoying the fragrance of flowers and the fresh air, we even ate the flower raw there, these blossoms smell a little like Jasmine and tasted sweet and crunchy. 

I made the flowers we collected into pancake today and it is tasting really yummy!

Here is the portrait of these beautifully yummy flowers.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Fishwort Salad (涼拌魚腥草)

Fishwort is probably one of the weirdest greens I have ever tasted, it is also called lizard's tail and bishop's weed, the smell of it is really awful to me, it is a cross between fishy and bloody smell. But many people swear by the taste and it has very good medicinal property-- it is said to kills bacteria and viruses while also serving to reduce fevers and inflammation, promote wellness of the eyes and stimulate menstruation as well as bladder and bowel functions.

So it sounds like worth enduring the smell to consume, right? Beside, I was told that once you get passed the smell, you will fall in love with the taste! This salad green is not easily available in the market, in China it is the root that most people go after, it is suppose to taste even better than the leaves. I got my supply from a friend and decided to make this simple salad when we got home.

To my surprise, mom and NS loves it! They split the whole bowl as brother and I could not get pass the second bite.

Monday, May 26, 2014

Edible Wild Plants -- Shepherd's Purse Tofu Soup

Every year early in spring there sure will be guides and discussions about edible wild plants on the cooking forum that I visited,  It is also not a uncommon scene to see people walking around in the wild near the woods and rivers in search for these plants. 

Shepherd's purse ((Capsella bursa-pastoris) is one of the common edible wild plants and could be found in most parts near where I lived, it is a plant from the mustard family and has a very unique pungent smell and taste. This wild plant is also extremely high in potassium and vitamin C, making it even more attractive to us.

It is a very common vegetable eaten around Shanghai area in China, it could be used in most dishes that called for mustard green.

I have been trying to search for this plant in the wild for the past few years, the only time I ever spotted one was near a barn and it was already seeded thus too old for eating, I brought back those seeds and scatter them around my vegetable garden with the hope that it will spring out (literally) in the spring.But it didn't happened. 

So I opted  for the next best thing, I went to my friend Liren's house, I knew that he has a whole bunch of shepherd's purse that he intentionally let it grow like weed! I guess I would do a good thing over the weekend to help a friend weed his garden! 

Friday, May 16, 2014

Potato and Minced meat Stew【肉碎马铃薯】

Potato with minced meat is a typical dish for most Chinese family in Malaysia. There may be different variations of this dish in different families. Some like the potato cubed, some like it in sticks. In our house, it is always thickly sliced.

I made this for lunch yesterday and my brother who is visiting says it tasted just the way grandma used to made it.





Wednesday, May 7, 2014

【雞蛋咖哩 # 2】Egg Curry # 2



N worked from home the past few weeks, so I had to think of what to make for lunch and dinner everyday beside preparing toddler food for little A. 

After about a week or so I started feeling tired and was out of ideas for what to cook. We ordered a few take outs and deliveries. When that happened more than thrice in a week, N started giving me that "I want some home-cook food" look.

So I had no choice but to whipped up something simple tonight, there is nothing simpler than a simple egg curry for dinner, it could be done in literally less than 30 minutes and one can't really go wrong with a egg curry!

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

【酸奶泡豆饼】Dahi Vada/Dahi Balla (Lentil Dumplings in Yogurt Sauce)


I made Medu Vada (Deep Fried Lentil ball) two days ago, I did made extra so that I could make this Simple Chaat called Dahi Vada the next day as snacks for N.

I like the idea to make one dish and turn into another different dish, it just reminds me that life don't have to be so complicated sometimes......

Saturday, May 3, 2014

【印式炸豆饼】Medu Vada/Vadai (Deep Fried Lentil Dumplings)




When I was a student, there was this old Indian man who goes around selling deep fried snacks or"muruku" back home. He has a big wooden/glass box attached to the back of his bicycle, where you could find small compartments that filled with different kinds of savory tidbits.

One of them is a little fried bean cake shaped like a mini donut, it is called "vadai", I love that stuff and did not know what it was made off until I moved to stay in India.

I was thrilled to learn that this snack is made of only legume, a snack higher in protein I presume. It goes very well with Coconut Chutney and can easily turn into Dahi Vada later.