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Thursday, June 30, 2016

Kuih Lapis (Malaysian Steamed Layer Cake) 三色九层糕




Kuih lapis means layer cake in Malay. It is a common steamed cake sold at the roadside stalls in Malaysia. I was not crazy about this cake before I left Malaysia, but for some reason, I can't stop thinking about it lately.

Since I have a gathering over the weekend, I decided to make this beautiful cake to share with my friends.

My version of kuih lapis is made from scratch using rice (instead of rice flour) and natural coloring (Ang Chow and Pandan Leave). It tasted real good and it is all natural.


九层糕是小时候街边卖糕点的摊子上一定有的糕点,小时候随处可得的东西总是不太懂得珍惜,出国后一直想做一次九层糕尝尝。终于等到一个朋友要带糕点去聚餐,让我一起做点什么,就想起了这个九层糕。

我这次用米磨浆,然后用红糟和班兰叶汁染色,出来的效果还是很不错的,天然又好吃哦!


Friday, June 24, 2016

Nyonya Dumplings 娘惹粽





According to Wikipedia:

Peranakan Chinese or Straits-born Chinese are the descendants of Chinese immigrants who came to the Malay archipelago including British Malaya (now Peninsular Malaysia and Singapore, where they are also referred to as Baba-Nyonya) and Dutch East Indies (now Indonesia; where they're also referred as Kiau-Seng)[4] between the 15th and 17th centuries.[5] Members of this community in Malaysia address themselves as "Baba Nyonya". 

Nyonya is the term for the women and Baba for the men. It applies especially to the Han populations of the British Straits Settlements of Malaya and the Dutch-controlled island of Java and other locations, who have adopted Nusantara customs — partially or in full — to be somewhat assimilated into the local communities. Many were the elites of Singapore, more loyal to the British than to China. Most have lived for generations along the straits of Malacca. They were usually traders, the middleman of the British and the Chinese, or the Chinese and Malays, or vice versa because they were mostly English educated. Because of this, they almost always had the ability to speak two or more languages.

Monday, June 20, 2016

Sweet Potato donut (balls)番薯蛋




This sweet potato donut is a very common snack in Malaysia, it is mostly available in pasar malam (night markets)and food stalls, a good snack over afternoon.

I bought very good sweet potatoes few days back and made these balls for teatime. I sent a plateful over to my neighbour, her son had a bite and said “This is Malaysian donut, nice!".


番薯蛋是家乡一个很普遍的零食,是每次去Pasar Malam或者斋戒月的开斋摊子一定要买的一个甜食。 今天做好了给隔壁阿姨送了一盘过去,她的儿子拿起来吃了一口就说。。。“这是马来西亚甜甜球哦!好吃!"

我觉得它比donut要好吃啦!


Saturday, June 18, 2016

Mushrooms egg Stir fry (三菇炒鸡蛋)



My diet normally consist more of vegetables and less meat. Thus mushroom became a very common and versatile cooking ingredients at home.

This is a recipe I came up with the two of my favourite ingredients: Egg and mushroom, it's easy, quick, and goes well with rice and porridge.


我很喜欢吃菌类,所以经常买新鲜的菇类做菜。这道菜用了泡发的干香菇,香菇炒起来比较香,让这道菜的口感和味道都更加丰富,配饭下粥都很香喔!

注:也可以用任何新鲜的菇类做,一样好吃。

Friday, June 17, 2016

Palak Paneer (Spinach with Cottage Cheese) # 2 菠菜奶豆腐 # 2




My family in Malaysia loved North Indian Cuisine, there is a very nice Indian restaurant that sells naan and Tandoori chicken name "Pak Putra" in Melaka. It is a roadside hawker style restaurant, they have all the chairs and tables lined up at the roadside in front of the shop every evening.  

We made special trips there when N and I visiting Malaysia, he is always delighted to go there for his Indian food fixed. 

Pak Putra made very good spinach curry without paneer, I find it very funny at first, they called it "Palak", without the word paneer. I guess it is because fresh Indian Cottage cheese is hard to find in Melaka.

So my family in Malaysia are so used to the palak gravy that they thought it is how it should be eaten. They have no idea about the famous Northern Indian dish called Palak paneer, until mom and brother visited US and I made it one day and they were like :" Oh this is the real thing?". 

They liked it very much though mom couldn't really get along with the idea of eating "tofu" with spinach. She has learned it somewhere on the internet that calcium in tofu will react to oxalate in the spinach and promotes the formation of kidney stones or some sort of rumor like that.

So, even though I have repeatedly told her that it is just a myth and paneer isn't really tofu, she still eats only the spinach gravy but not the paneer. I guess old habits die hard then.

我的家乡马六甲有一间北印餐厅叫做 "Pak Putra" , 是一家把餐桌和椅子摆在路边的路边摊式餐厅。他们家的印度馕和各式咖喱都很不错,烤鸡更是远近驰名。不少到马六甲玩的外国游客都闻名去尝鲜呢!

我和N回国探亲的时候大多时候都会去那里吃几次饭。他家有一款我家人非常喜欢的咖喱叫做“Palak”,第一次去吃的时候我就有点奇怪了,因为这不是印度那里的吃法,后来我想大概是因为马六甲买不到新鲜的奶豆腐所以把驰名的菠菜奶豆腐做成只有菠菜的咖喱了吧!

后来我有一天做了这个菠菜奶豆腐,我妈一吃,说:”唉呀!这就是Pak Putra的菠菜咖喱嘛!“。看来我的猜测不错哦!

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Sweet Peanut Soup (Xiamen Peanut Soup) 厦门花生汤



Many years back when we first visited our native village back in China, my brothers and I discovered a small stall near the hotel selling local dishes and snacks.

This sweet peanut soup was one of them, I remembered going back for more everyday during our stay. It was just incredibly delicious, unforgettable taste even after so many years...


多年前回老家厦门探亲,和几个弟弟蹲在旅馆门口的一个小摊子喝这个花生汤,香甜好喝,后来的几天每天都到小摊子报到。那个味道许多年不忘。

花生蛋白质丰富,拥有好几种对人体有益的氨基酸,煮汤更是下火美容。天凉的时候来一碗热热甜甜的花生汤既可以饱肚,又可以养生喔!

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Kee Zhang/Alkaline Dumplings 碱水粽



Every year during the dragon boat festival (端午节), mom will make a lot of Nyonya and meat dumplings for us. 

But for prayer purpose, she would order some Kee Zhang/Alkaline Dumplings (碱水粽)from some ladies in town. Kee Zhang is normally much smaller in size, only about 1/3 of the normal dumplings. 

The dumplings have a very unique flavor and texture after adding alkaline water/lye water, the color of rice changes and take on a yellow hue, the alkaline water also makes the rice turned firmer and finally the taste of Alkalinity, a very distinctive, slick and pleasant feeling in the mouth, it is hard to explain, but a unique experience.

I made Bak Zhang for Dragon Boat festival and was left with some glutinous rice and soaked bamboo leaves. I liked to have my Kee Zhang serve with Pandan Kaya or Caramel Kaya

Since I do not have Kaya ready at home, I served mine with Maple Syrup this time and it is really yummy!

小时候每逢端午节妈妈都会裹上好多的咸肉粽和娘惹粽,但拜拜用的碱水粽却总是向乡里的一些家庭主妇买的,碱水粽有股特别的碱水味,家里的小孩都不爱吃,所以一般会沾了甜味的香兰咖央,或焦糖咖央吃。

今年端午节我裹了好些肉粽和朋友们分享,还剩下一些糯米和粽叶,就裹了两串的碱水粽,沾了枫糖浆也很香,真是久违的味道!

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Bak Zhang (咸肉粽)




Mum Used to make Nyonya dumplings and Bak Zhang (Meat Dumpling) during the dragon boat festival back home.

I have always enjoyed Bak zhang more than the nyonya version, though mum got her fame of good dumplings maker mostly from her nyonya dumplings.

I have never tried my hands on dumpling making as it was just way too troublesome and require precision and skills.

Note: The original post was written in September 2009, updated with new photographs.


我妈妈裹的粽子在我们家族里是很有名的。我们几姐弟也一直只喜欢妈妈裹的肉粽。端午节时看见大家都在裹粽子,就很想念妈妈的肉粽。
我不喜欢栗子,也不喜欢粽子里有豆子花生和咸蛋黄,所以妈妈每年都会专门裹一串只有肉和香菇的粽子给我吃。今年端午小弟很不识相的在网上跟我炫耀说刚吃了妈妈裹的肉粽。让吃了一个月素菜的我更想念妈妈的肉粽了。
我本来就没有裹过粽子,今年端午的时候公公婆婆在,他们都茹素,我就更不能裹了,一直到公公婆婆离开我才有机会开工。
昨晚在视频里问妈妈材料和做法,差点没有晕倒!我妈给指示真的很搞笑,完全没有份量不说,而且什么调味料都说“丢”进去拌匀就可以了。还跟我说五香粉用“一块钱”的量!
先别说美国一块钱的五香粉和马来西亚一块钱的五香粉是不是等量。我的老妈,难道老家的五香粉那么能抗通膨,都不会涨价的哦?
我今天只好先小量的实验了一下,再把所有的材料和份量都记录下来。第一次裹粽子就做出妈妈的味道,很激动噢!
注:原食谱写于2009年九月。

Monday, June 6, 2016

Rooh Afza Lassi 玫瑰露酸奶昔



During my stay in India, I was often served with Rooh Afza during summer time at friend’s house, it tasted very similar to a very common drink in Malaysia called "Air Bandung", which is made with Rose syrup, both are very refreshing and delicious, especially when it is mixed with milk.

Roof Afza is a natural concentrated squash/syrup. It is widely used in the month of Ramadan. It is believed to have long lasting cooling effects that provides freshness and energy in the scorching summer.

Beverages made with this syrup have unique flavor and fragrance. The name is also very interesting as Rooh means soul and afza means nourish, so the drink is believed to nourish our souls!

在印度的时候,尤其是夏天时,经常会在朋友家做客时喝到一款印度产的玫瑰露【Rooh Afza】泡制的冷饮,味道和马来西亚的一款玫瑰饮料【Air Bandung】很相似,都是带有玫瑰甜香的甜味饮料。很适合在炎炎夏日的午后饮用。

印巴人相信这款配方用有几款花和几种香草的饮料有消暑保健的作用,所以经常拿来做甜食和冷饮。

Urdu/印度语里【Rooh】是灵魂/灵性的意思,【Afza】代表滋养,营养。所以这款饮料还有安抚灵性的效果哦!


Sunday, June 5, 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! 

腌制这个叉烧的时候本来是想要做叉烧包的,可开口笑叉烧包需要三天时间做包子皮,我一直没时间做那个老面。而叉烧已经都腌了四天了,先把叉烧烤了再说吧! 

之前在网上看见过有人特有创意的用回形针把叉烧肉挂起来烤,就有了挂炉的效果,我也来试试,很是不错哦!

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