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Sunday, February 28, 2016

Braised Pig Trotters with Nam Yu Beancurd 南乳花生燉豬手



My son's godmother sent me this braised pig trotters made by her mother in law during Chinese new year, it was so tasty that I had to ask for the recipe right away!

春节的时候俊宝的干妈给我送了一锅她婆婆做的的南乳花生发菜猪手,味道好的不得了,我马上把食谱问了来,老人家的手艺必须要学了保留下来哦!


Saturday, February 27, 2016

Multigrain Potato Buns




Hot cross buns! Hot cross buns!
One a penny, two a penny, Hot cross buns!
If you have no daughters, give them to your sons.
One a penny two a penny, Hot cross buns!

My son A has been into this song for days, so much so that he started asking for hot cross buns at home!

So I made this multigrain potato buns with custard "cross" on it, he was thrilled and had two in one day! It is a lot considering his petite appetite!

Friday, February 26, 2016

Fish Head Noodle Soup【鱼头米粉】



Fish head noodle is a very common noodle soup back home, I can still vividly remember the image of my  ex-colleague Katherine having this as lunch almost every day for 3 months!

Well..... It is definitely a very tasty dish, a good blend of milky soup base, sourish vegetables and crunchy fried fish head! 

鱼头米粉是马来西亚一个很有名的汤粉,特别的鲜香。配上炸酥的鱼头块,淡奶,酸菜和番茄,味道很是丰富,让人吃了还想要吃呢!

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Stir-Fried Glutinous Rice (生炒糯米饭)




Fried glutinous rice is a very famous dish in Chinese Dim Sum place, most restaurants now pre-cooked the rice and stir fry like the normal fried rice would to reduce cooking time.

The shortcut was created simply because the traditional way to make this dish is rather time consuming and tedious. It started with soaking the glutinous rice for hours and stir-fry it in a wok, the rice is then being cook slowly by adding sauces in batches until the rice is completely cooked, this method resulting in rice that retaining its shape and is much chewy and less gooey in texture.

If you have time, try making this dish the traditional way, you will find a brand new experience and may even fall in love with it!

Monday, February 22, 2016

Masala Arbi (Arvi/Colocasia)




I was pretty surprised to see this small yam in India market when I lived there. I bought it to made yam rice but it didn't turn out to be the same like the normal yam will do.

I had this Arbi again at my mother in law's place later, it was made into Masala Arbi, it tasted really good and had since became one of my favourite foods.

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Vegetarian Char Siu



Like I mentioned in my previous post of Vegetarian dish Longevity, it is a family tradition to eat only vegetarian foods on the first day of Chinese New Year. This vegetarian Char Siu is one of the dishes that is well loved in the family.

It was rather easy to prepare this dish back home, you can buy ready made Char Siu and fry it. Since I have not seen any ready made char siu here in the Asian supermarket, I decided to make it at home. 

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Butter Chicken (Murgh Makhni)




Butter chicken is probably one of the first Indian/Pakistani dishes that many people encounter when they tried to experience Indian cuisine. Most likely to be one of the not so exotic ones compared to it's much spicier peers.

I was often asked about this dish and its recipe, it is about time to write one! I just love that when someone asked for it, I can just send out a link!

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Longevity Dish (Vegetarian Steamed Chinese Cabbage)



It is a tradition in my family to have only vegetarian food on the first day of Lunar New Year. It was said that being vegetarian for this particular day will bring luck for the whole year. I had a feeling that it was just a nicer way to make us eat more vegetables after the feast on the New year eve.

It is also mandatory in our family to have Chinese Cabbage (Thng Pek) for Chinese New year meal, as it symbolize longevity, the cabbage has to be prepared without cutting it crosswise, it has to retain its shape and to be eaten whole.

I made this vegetarian dish using whole cabbage leaves with some stewed gluten, it is very presentable and delicious. A good vegetable dish for Chinese New Year, and a good way to upkeep the family heritage!

Saturday, February 13, 2016

Traditional Steamed Sponge Cake/Kuay Neng Koh



Cake was a luxury item in my home when I was young, we will only buy cake on elders' birthday, the kids get a piece each and I will savored mine a little by little hoping that it would last longer. 

This Traditional steamed sponge cake/Kuay Neng Koh (Oven is not a common thing back home, even up till today) is what we usually eat during the Chinese New Year or festive season. Electric mixer was not popular in those days, this cake was made using a huge spring like whisk and was whisked manually for a long time with few people taking turn to do it. 

This recipe was passed on to my aunt by word of mouth from the elderly, my aunt was with my mother when I called on Chinese new year eve, so I quickly grasp the opportunity to get the recipe from her and made it the next day. As traditional as this cake could be, the recipe is also very interesting, it is measured using rice bowl rather than measuring cup. I had to showed my rice bowl on facetime to my aunt to confirm the size of bowl that she used!I did, though convert it into cup/weight for recording purpose. 

The ingredients for this heritage delicacy is very simple, it produced the fluffiest cake that I had ever had, it is very tasty and has the taste of home and my childhood.

Monday, February 8, 2016

BBQ Bak Kwa (Chinese Pork Jerky)



Bak Kwa, while growing up is something we get to enjoyed only during Chinese New Year in Malaysia. I used to queue up for hours at Petaling street "Ngo Lei Ya" just to get a couple of packets of this BBQ meat...

That may sounds like crazy now, but the wait makes the BBQ meat all the more precious, so is the memory of celebrating Chinese New Year with families.

Saturday, February 6, 2016

Traditional Chinese New Year Cake/Nian Gao



My childhood was spent mostly in a small town in southern part of Peninsular Malaysia. The "festive" atmosphere in small towns during and before Chinese New Year are so much stronger in comparison to cities.

The elderly in families will start making types of New Year cakes/Kuehs weeks before Chinese New Year. This Nian Gao/Sticky rice cake is one of them.

My grandma was the one that makes this cake for everyone in the family, she will stayed up all night to watch the fire. Every steps of making this cake is manual and rigorous.

Nian Gao is normally used for prayers in Chinese New Year, a well steamed Nian Gao can be stored for months without being refrigerated.

Even though there are many short cut recipes of Nian Gao circulating around the net nowadays.

I still find it imperative to preserve the traditional way of making it.

Though I can't stone grind my glutinous rice and steam cook using fire woods, I do managed to replicate the process as closely to the origin as I can with the aids of blender and slow cooker.

I have to say that I cannot be more pleased with the result!

Here I am, together with my family heritage -- Nian Gao, wishing everybody a prosperous and healthy year of Monkey!

Hokkien Pok Nyee (Minnan Style Meatballs)




When I was young, Chinese New Year preparation is a very lengthy and tedious process. The elderly in the family will have to start weeks ahead to make ingredients for cooking for the reunion dinner.

Bak Nyee/Meatballs is one of the tedious ones, it requires mincing pork butt with butcher knife on a huge chopping board slowly before adding other ingredients. A few people will have to work together to take turn to make sure the pork was well minced. When one works on mincing the meat, others will chipped in to peel garlics and shallots, which will later be added to the pork to be minced together.

The minced pork will then be seasoned with spices and salt, together with some crushed soda crackers (for crunchiness). The seasoned meat will be make into small balls and being thrown with force between two palms, just like how you would with playing throwing of balls. Doing this for around 10 times will result in a very round and solid meatball, which is chewy in texture.

The meatballs is a very good dish on its own after frying, the leftover could be make into different kind of meatballs dishes too.

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Spring roll (Poh Piah)



The traditional East Asian calendars divide a year into 24 solar terms (節氣). Lìchūn (立春) literally: "start of spring") is the 1st solar term.

Traditionally we will eat something that grow in spring in the day Lichun falls. Typically stirred fried vegetables wrapped in a steamed sheet made from wheat flour, it is thus called "Spring Roll". Spring rolls could be eaten fresh or fried.

Mum used to buy fresh spring roll sheet from a local lady, with lots of different kind of vegetables, fried eggs, and this Mang Guang Char.

All the kiddos in the house were allowed to wrap our own spring rolls, that was more fun than eating it. My brother will stuffed his rolls with so much fillings that it could hardly roll up!

It was very fond memories and since it is Lichun today, I am making some spring rolls for the families to upkeep the tradition.

Mang Guang Char(Stir Fry Shredded Jicama)



Jicama is a very common fruit/vegetable in Malaysia, it could be eaten raw as fruit or cooked into different type of dishes. This Mang Guang Char is one of them, we eat it as dishes to go with rice or congee.

It is a very common vegetables to be wrapped in spring roll/Popiah, it can also be used as filling of steamed bun/pau.


Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Gingko Barley Soy Skin Sweet Soup



It suddenly got very cold this week here in the east coast of USA with more than 10 inches of snow. The air became very dry and cold, my lips crack and nose dried up, it's about time to make something that could help fight cold and dryness!

I saw the fresh bean curd skin and fresh Gingko at the Chinese supermarket today, it is perfect to make this sweet soup good to moist the skin and nourish the body!

How to make Phulka/Chapati & Puri (Video)





Phulkas (also known as Roti or Chapati in some regions in India) is a thin puffed flat bread made with whole wheat flour (Atta). It is a daily staple food for many people in India, especially the northern regions.

Rotis are traditionally cooked on tava (A flat iron skillet) and later place over direct flame to quickly puff it up.

Growing up as a Chinese girl in Malaysia, I have never come across any homemade bread until much later in my teenage let alone preparing it.

I started preparing homemade rotis when we moved to USA after marriage, I had to learn from scratch, took me months to learn how to knead the dough with right texture, another few more months to learn how to roll a somewhat presentable round rotis. My husband N had to eat so many failed attempts before it gets better.

I can now say that I make pretty good rotis and made a short video on it. It does gets better with practise, that is for sure.

Monday, February 1, 2016

Ngoh Heang/ Lorbak




This meat roll in bean curd skin is a common Chinese New Year dish back home. There will be housewives making it at home and sell in advance weeks before chinese New Year, mom will buy from her friends and keep it in the freezer.

We will thaw a few of this rolls and fry it before reunion dinner, it takes a very short time to turn it into another good looking and delicious reunion dinner dish!
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