Monday, December 21, 2020

【客家咸汤圆】Hakka Savory Glutinous Rice Balls Soup



It is the week leading to Christmas, 2020 is finally coming to an end. I am truly wishing that with the New Year coming, we will also celebrate the end of this very eventful year and welcoming a peaceful year of 2021 full of joy and health.

It is Winter Solstice today, so I decided to write this savory glutinous rice balls soup to wish everyone a happy Winter Solstice.

Wednesday, December 16, 2020

【南瓜苗咖喱】Pumpkin Shoots Curry (Gulai Pucuk Labu)



Sometimes during the winter last year I bought a Japanese Kabocha pumpkin to cook and buried the seeds and rinds in my raised bed to compost. The seeds germinated and gave me 2 seedlings mid-spring.

I transplanted one of them in my front yard and was doing really well, the plant began to bloom around the end of June/early July. When one pumpkin plant was about to take over my entire front yard, I had to start trimming some shots and leaves to make it manageable. 

With that, I also harvest some young shoots and male blossoms to make this pumpkin shoots curry.

Friday, October 2, 2020

【菜脯蒸鱼】Preserved Radish Steamed Fish


I have made a few batch of Preserved Radish/Chai Poh few years back, it has aged really well and is smelling so fragrance. It is perfect for this Steamed fish dish.

Thursday, August 20, 2020

【咸排骨花生粥】Salted Ribs and Peanut Congee


自从三月新泽西州宣布“就地避难” (Shelter-in-place)后,除了少数出门买菜的时候外,我们一家三口就闭关在家那么多个月了,上两周天气闷热,没什么胃口,也不想站在炉子前做饭,就做了一锅咸排骨花生粥,味道真的非常好。

I have been cooking 3 square meals everyday for the past 6 months since the order of shelter in place back in March, it is getting more and more challenging to think of dishes to cook on daily basis. 

Since the weather was quite humid and it is hard to labor in front of a hot stove, I decided to make a one pot meal today for the three of us. A very tasty Salted Ribs and Peanut Congee.

Tuesday, July 28, 2020

【黄梨饼】Pineapple Tart



必须要说的是爱尔兰草饲牛油(Grass fed Butter)做糕点真是太香了!成品入口即化,做了一大罐的黄梨饼也是一下子就被消灭掉了!

Pineapple tart is not only my favorite Chinese New Year Cookie, it is also something I will bring home from the Asian market whenever I sees one. The pineapple tart I find in the Asian Market here are mostly imported from Taiwan, though it is very tasty on its own, it is not entirely the same as the one we have back home.

I brought two boxes of the Taiwanese Pineapple Tarts at the beginning of Shelter in Place Order, it was long gone since and DS has been asking for replenishment for weeks. Since I have not been shopping much at The Asian Supermarket lately to reduce the frequency of going into a public place. I decided to make the Malaysian Pineapple Tarts with the fresh pineapples I bought from Walmart online delivery.

I have to say that using Grass-fed butter to make these tarts was the best decision I have made, the tart crust turned out so good that it melts in the mouth in every bites!

Saturday, July 25, 2020

【印式鹰嘴豆零嘴】Kacang Putih

马来西亚有很多路边摊,其中一个路边摊是由早年印度南部淡米尔移民垄断的“Kacang Putih摊”,小摊子摆着很多罐子,卖的是各色香辣脆口小零嘴。

其实这些小贩一开始卖的只有蒸熟调味的鹰嘴豆,马来语就叫Kacang Putih/Puteh, 这款蒸鹰嘴豆需要不断地保温避免在炎热的天气里变馊或因被风干变得口感不好,所以售卖的时候就需要带个小炉子和蒸笼摆卖。



According to

"The history of the kacang putih (literally translated as ‘white nuts’) business goes back to the 1940s, when the British brought in migrant labourers from the Ettayapuram village in Tamil Nadu to Malaya.

A few families settled down near the limestone hill in Gunung Cheroh, Ipoh – until 1973, when the residents were relocated to Teluk Kurin B in Buntong after a slab of limestone fell onto a longhouse, killing 42 people.

 It was in the new settlement that business kicked up. The new, larger homes allowed owners to set up retail storefronts selling kacang putih, as well as other fried Indian snacks like murukku and assorted fried nuts made using recipes from Tamil Nadu. Business was so brisk that the settlement’s unwieldy name was changed to Kampung Kacang Putih – and until today, remains as the heart of a growing kacang putih industry across the country. "

The Kacang putih men have since progress much into selling different kind of snacks including Muruku, vadai and of course this original "Kacang putih"

网上抓的Kacang Putih 摊照/The Kacang Putih Stall Picture from google search

Friday, July 17, 2020

【蝶豆花椰浆饭】Nasi Lemak Biru


蝶豆花是个健康保健的好东西、有抗氧化、提升脑力、护发、提高抵抗力的效果。 在泰国,人们会把蝶豆花泡热水做成蓝色的饮料,有消暑养生的效果。

According to Wikipedia:

Clitoria ternatea, common names including butterfly pea, blue pea, Aprajita, Cordofan pea and Asian pigeonwings, is a plant species belonging to the Fabaceae family.

......Names in other languages include bunga telang (Malay), อัญชัน `anchan (Thai), đậu biếc (Vietnamese), अपराजिता Aparajita in Hindi and 蝶豆 dié dòu (Mandarin Chinese), 'Sankhu Poolu/Sankham Poolu' in Telugu, "Shankupushpam" in Malayalam language and অপরাজিতা (Aparajita) in Bengali.
A friend of mine sent me a packet of her sun-dried Blue butterfly peas, I used them to make this beautiful Nasi Lemak, it is so beautiful that I almost feel bad eating it!

Saturday, July 11, 2020

【泰式酱油炒粿条】Pad See Ew Recipe ผัดซีอิ้ว

这款泰式炒粿条是每次到泰国餐厅就会点的一道面食,比起 Pad Thai, 我更喜欢这款炒粿条。

I like to order this stir fried flat rice noodle at Thai restaurants, the taste of "charred" in this dish is very similar to my favorite Penang Char Kuay Teow, brings me right back to the humid street of South East Asia.

Monday, July 6, 2020

【薄荷冰粉】Mint Syrup Ice Jelly



Ice jelly looks a lot like Aiyu Jelly, can also be served the same way. Though the texture and the way of preparation of these two jellies are very similar, and are both natural. They are both made from seeds of two very different plants.

Aiyu jelly is made from the gel from the seeds of the awkeotsang creeping fig found in Taiwan and East Asian countries of the same climates and latitudes, the plant belonged to the family of fig, where ice jelly is made from the seeds of Nicandra physalodes (Linn.) Gaertn, from the same family of Tomatillo.

I bought a few packets of ice jelly powder online few weeks back, since the weather is at the mid 90s F/30s C these days, I made this Ice Jelly for us as dessert, the whole family loved it very much!

Wednesday, July 1, 2020

【爆浆脆酥球】Golgappa/Pani Puri

今天我们来做电影《摔跤吧,爸爸》里面女主爱吃的脆球饼,也是我家LD特别爱吃的一款点心。这种空心球,电影里叫 Golgappa,它还有另外一个名字叫 Pani Puri (पानी पूरी)Pani 的意思是水,指的应该是灌入的香料水;Puri 指的是炸好的空心小面球。这种小球球可是印度街头热卖的小吃,只要有街头小吃摊的地方,就有它。


Years back, when I was still dating my husband, he brought me to a roadside stall in Delhi and brought 6 tiny puffs full of spice water and seasonings. That was my first encounter with this interesting snack called Golgappa/Pani puri.

When I popped the puff into my mouth the very first time, the burst of flavors and the combination of liquid and crunchiness of the fried puris is really a very unique experience.

Since there is no roadside stall selling this snack here in the United States, and the local Indian supermarkets are selling freshly made puri puffs for this snack, I have learnt to make it at home, and have since perfected the recipe.

Tuesday, June 23, 2020

【马齿苋菜馍】Purslane Steamed buns





I brought a bunch of purslane from the woods last year and threw the seeds at my backyard, it grew into few large plants and I harvest a couple of time to make purslane salad, I also sun-dried a batch to be used in winter time.

Little did I know that the purslane will return this year so much more than before... I had harvest it thrice since and the last batch that I brought home I used it to make this Steamed buns, very healthy and a great way to get more nutritions!

Purslane is best used for human consumption as a green vegetable rich in minerals and omega-3 fatty acids [20]. Omega-3 fatty acid is a precursor of a specific group of hormones. It may offer protection against cardiovascular disease, cancers, and a number of chronic diseases and conditions throughout the human life.

Wednesday, June 17, 2020

【豆沙碱水粽】Kee Zhang/Alkaline Dumplings with Adzuki Bean Paste

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.

Since I have some Sweet Adzuki Bean Paste at home, I decided to make this Alkaline Dumplings with Adzuki bean Paste this year instead of the normal Kee Zhang

I really love the texture and color of this dumpling!



Friday, June 12, 2020

【花生肉粽】Bak Zhang with Peanuts



When I was young, my favorite dumpling was Bak Zhang. But as I grow older, I started appreciating dumplings with various kinds of pulses in it, this year I decided to make a type with peanuts and it came out absolutely delish!

Thursday, June 4, 2020

【泰式芒果糯米饭】Thai Mango Sticky Rice (Khao Niaow Ma Muang)


Summer is finally here and so is mango season! A good time to make this classic Thai dessert khao niaow ma muang. It is the most famous of all Thai desserts, and is a must have for us every summer when mangoes are in season.

Wednesday, May 27, 2020

【日式米汉堡】Japanese Rice Burger

多年前日本快餐连锁店摩斯汉堡(MOS burger)进军马来西亚,开业时我和几位同事一起去尝了他们家有名的米汉堡,一吃就爱上了米汉堡的味道。后来摩斯汉堡店选择了离开马来西亚市场,我也再没机会吃上我喜欢的米汉堡了。


Years back the Japanese fast food chain MOS burger opened its stores in Malaysia, I went with my colleagues and fell in love with the Rice burger they served. Unfortunately the restaurants didn't do too well in Malaysia and they had to eventually pull all stores out from the market.

I made Japanese Hambugu Steak (ハンバーグ) few days back for dinner, and made this delicious Rice Burger with the remaining burger meat for brunch the next day. 

Just so that you know, This Rice Burger is actually the reason I made the Hambugu Steak! It really did taste like the signature rice burger of the MOS!

Friday, May 22, 2020

【日式汉堡肉】Japanese Hambugu Steak (ハンバーグ)




The first time I had this Hamburger steak was in Japan as an exchanged student, the way Japanese served their burger patties without bread was really new to me and with great surprise, it tasted really well together with some rice served on the side!

My neighbor brought me two packets of organic minced beef few days ago, I immediately know what I am going to do with it! Dear son loves the hamburger steak I made with it and was requesting the same lunch again the next day.

Tuesday, May 12, 2020

【红糖马拉糕】Brown Sugar Ma Lai Gou




Ma lai gao is a popular Chinese dim sum dish, it is widely served at almost all the dim sum place. Unfortunately, not too many dim sum makers making Ma Lai Go the traditional way anymore, the Ma Lai Gou served at many restaurants nowadays are rather a version of steamed cake using baking powder as a leavening agent.

The real Ma Lai Go made the traditional way is a 3-day process, the long fermentation process produces soft yet very spongy texture of the cake.

I have created this recipe with just 24 hours of fermentation instead of 72, though it is not as long time as the traditional recipe called for, the recipe still produces the characteristic three ways holes in the cake that make Ma Lai Gou very soft and spongy.  I am really pleased with the recipe!

Saturday, May 9, 2020

【印尼红辣酱蘸茄子】Terung Belado/Balado



Sambal Balado is a very versatile chili paste from Indonesia/Malaysia, it can be used as seasoning in many dishes and is a very good condiment for many recipes. My personal favorite ways to serve this chili paste is with grilled egg plant, fried/boiled eggs. All serves really well as side dish to some hot steamed rice.

It is fairly easy to make at home and could be stored in refrigerator for weeks to come.

Friday, May 8, 2020

【蚝煎/蚝烙】Fried Oyster Omelette (Or Luak/ Or Chien)




When I was young, whenever my parents bring us out for dinner at the hawker center, dad will always order this Oyster Omelette for the family to share, a very good side dish to go with noodle or rice dishes.

I bought two packets of frozen oysters from the Korean supermarket not long ago with this dish in mind, with the garlic I planted in my front yard finally growing tall enough for harvest, I made this omelette for brunch and hubby and I both enjoyed it very much!

Note: The original recipe for this omelette is to use garlic green instead of spring onion.

Thursday, April 30, 2020

【巧克力甜甜圈】Chocolate Glazed Donuts with Sprinkles



My son A loves donuts and it has been 8 weeks since he last had one due to the lock down situation in my town. 

Thanks to my neighbor T, who helped bringing me the long out of stock all purpose flour few days back, I can now make some doughnuts together with my son at home. 

A was elated and had 3 donuts in a day!

Friday, April 24, 2020

【五香眉豆糕】Steamed Black Eye Peas Cake

芋头糕、萝卜糕、金瓜糕 是星马人经常早餐和茶点吃的糕点。我们喜欢沾上特制的叁巴辣椒酱或甜酱,再配上一杯浓浓的咖啡乌(就是不加奶只加糖的黑咖啡),实在是简单又风味十足的点心。



Steamed Yam Cake, Steamed radish cake and Steamed pumpkin cake were my all time favorites for breakfast and teatime.

This version of steamed cake is using black eye peas and homemade ground rice, Steamed black eye peas cake is a little rarer and is most likely only found homemade even back home in Malaysia.

At the time of shelter in place and when we are told to limit our grocery shopping trips, dried pulses like black eye pea are really good choice of protein to have and have a long shelf life! This steamed cake can be made with few dried ingredients at home. Delicious and very comforting food indeed.

Saturday, April 18, 2020

【酱香茄丁卤面】Eggplant Black Sauce Noodle

Traditional Beijing Zhajiang Mian (Black sauce noodle) is one of my favorite ways to have noodle. Today I am making a variation of the noodle using Japanese Eggplant, another favorite cooking ingredients in our house. It turned out to be so delicious that even my 7 year old had a full bowl.


Friday, April 17, 2020

【马来咖喱角】Karipap Kentang (Curry Puff)



Curry puff is a very hearty snacks for me, I am still living in the world of 3 curry puffs for a Ringgit (Malaysian Currency).

I was surprised to see the increase in price and reduced in size of curry puff sold at the road side stall when I visited Malaysia the last time.

It was costing a lot more at a much smaller portion! Talking about inflation huh! It makes sense to make it at home... I guess.

Wednesday, April 8, 2020

【马来炸虾饼】Cucur Udang


This shrimp fritter is one of the snack choices in my hometown, often sold at the roadside hawker stalls. The hawker selling this also sells other snacks like fried bananas, fried banana fritters and some beverages.

Monday, April 6, 2020

【小鸡炖蘑菇】Chicken With Dried Mushroom Stew



A few years back, I went to work on a project in upstate New York and met a few clients from the
North Eastern part of China, since we were all working on a project and were also staying in the same hotel, we also had dinner together every evening and eventually became friends.

Once the project was over and the clients back to China, we were still keeping in touch and one of them keeps sending me stuff from China whenever he has a shipment to send to USA. 

Wild Zhen Mushroom (榛菇) is one of the special items from North Eastern China that he has sent me, the comment way to cook it is with chicken and make into a stew, very delicious and precious.

Saturday, April 4, 2020

【素炸三明治】Stuffed Bread Pakora

最近因为Covid-19 冠状病毒肆虐,州长两周前就下了禁足令,好多餐厅和超市都暂时关门了。呆在家里没事,就做点想做很久的小点心。



We have been ordered to Stay-At-Home by the authority to combat spreading of COVID-19,  since staying home means I have to make three meals a day. I decided to make a few dishes that I have been wanting to make for a long time.

This Stuffed Bread Pakora is one of them, we used to order this pakora as late afternoon snack at a small cafe near our rented apartment in Bangalore, it has been years since I tasted it.

Friday, March 20, 2020

【英国热威士忌饮】Hot Toddy to fight the Cold




Years back, I went to Japan as an exchanged student and contracted cold during my stay, the cold symptoms lasted for weeks even after taking some medication.

One night I was coughing so bad that I couldn't sleep, my foster father made me a cup of this hot toddy to help easing my pain, it was my first encounter with alcohol and it was tasting quiet good. 

My cough and cold magically improved the day after I had the hot toddy, though I wasn't sure it was the medicine that I took finally started working or that this hot toddy really did lived up to its fame.

In any case, it is a very nice soothing drink that relieve cold symptoms and helps one sleep better when I was under the weather. 

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

【葡萄牙烧海鲜】Portuguese Grilled Seafood



Portuguese grilled seafood/fish is a very famous dish in Malaysia,there is one stall in Petaling Street KL that used to be one of the famous grilled fish stalls in Kuala Lumpur, there used to be such a long waiting time to get to eat one meal at the stall.

And I can completely understand why! This tangy,spicy seafood grill is so tasty that even after years, I still miss the taste of it. So much so that I replicate it at home.

Saturday, February 8, 2020

元宵节快乐!【梅花汤圆】Happy Chap Goh Meh!【Plum Blossom Rice Balls】

2020 年春节是这么多年来过得最闹心的,天天捧着平板电脑看新型冠状病毒的新闻,跟着一则则新闻流泪难过。


The Chinese New Year of 2020 is a very difficult one for all the Chinese in China and around the world... I spent a lot of time following the news of the 2019 coronavirus, I cried reading some of the heroic acts of common people in, and around China. We are all common people trying hard to live a meaningful life...

Today is the last day of Chinese New Year, I decided to write a post on this beautiful Plum Blossom rice balls, with it I pray for safety and health for people in the world.

Happy Chap Goh Meh to all that are celebrating!

Monday, February 3, 2020

大桔大利【桔子豆包】 Chinese Mandarin Tau Sa Pau




I made these Mandarin steamed buns on the 9th day of Chinese New Year, when I posted the pictures of these buns on my FB page, many of my friends thought there are real Mandarin oranges!

It was so much fun making them!

Sunday, January 26, 2020

【古早味咸蛋糕】Traditional Steamed Sponge cake with Minced Meat

小时候过年过节的时候,我们会做传统的“鸡蛋糕”(Guay Neng Koh)吃,在电动搅拌机并不普及的时代,做蛋糕是一大家子轮班用大大的弹簧大力搅拌而成的。家里祭祀祭祖时,都要做这个鸡蛋糕,用村里人自己养的土鸡生的蛋,做出来的蛋糕分外香甜。


I made Traditional steamed sponge cake/Kuay Neng Koh for the Chinese New Year celebration few days back. The same recipe can also be use to make this "Salted cake", which has minced meat with fried shallot added to the cake as filling, a type of savory cake that also smell heavenly with the shallot added to the mix.

It is an upgraded version of the simple steamed cake, a heritage delicacy that carries in the family for generations, it is very tasty and has the taste of home and my childhood.

Friday, January 24, 2020

Happy Chinese New Year 【富贵萝卜花】Blossoming Rich


It is the time of the year again, it is Chinese New Year!! 

Here is one of my Chinese New Year dishes to wish all my family and friends a very Happy Lunar New Year of 2020!

Wednesday, January 8, 2020

【椰香红豆烤年糕】Baked Adzuki Bean Nian Gao



This version of Nian Gao is my go-to whenever I have a Chinese New Year gathering here in the States, a dessert that is easy to make and loved by many.

I made this cake for my family back in July during my visit and they loved it so much that I had to make another one before leaving for the States!Mom has been asking for the recipe since my returns, and since Chinese New Year is around the corner, it is about time to make it again and to record the recipe!

Sunday, January 5, 2020

【肉末烤茄子】Grilled Eggplant with Minced Meat


I always have a box of Minced Meat Sauce in the fridge, it is a very versatile and useful ingredient for cooking.

Today I am going to use it to make a type of grilled eggplant that I make very frequently, it takes only about 10 minutes to prepare if you already have the minced meat at hand.