Monday, October 31, 2005

Evy's First Halloween

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I'm determined to get myself some candies tonight!

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Oh wow, look at the candies I got!

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Yum..Yum... Mommy I can't talk, I got a mouth fulled.

We decided to take Evy for her first trick-a-treat this Halloween. What else to dress her in but the traditional Chinese costume and made her the China Doll for the night. Does she looks like a China Doll? :) For added effect, I painted her cheeks with some red lipstick. She looked so adorable walking by her daddy side, holding hands and went trick-a-treating door to door. She even held her own candy bag and waved and said bye-bye to those that gave her the candies. She certainly seem enjoying the whole experience. We went to about 20 houses and looked at the candies she got!

Sunday, October 30, 2005

Green Tea Melting Moments

I have been wanting to make this cookie ever since I saw how easy the recipe was early this year. However, I was just not motivated enough to really make it. What did it for me was the picture of Connie's melting moments at KC. She reminded me of this melt-in-the-mouth cookie again and thus the result of this afternoon labor. Sometimes all it took was a picture to snap me into action. Okay, now who wants to help me finish all the cookies? ;o)


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Coconut Melting Moments

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Ingredients:

1 cup unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1/2 cup cornstarch
1 1/3 cup + 1 Tbp. all-purpose flour
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract

1 1/2 cup sweetened coconut flakes

Method:

The method is the same as green tea melting moments, except for this I used vanilla extract instead of green tea powder.

Shape the dough into 1- inch ball and packed it with coconut flakes and baked in preheated 325'F oven for 15-17 minutes. Remove to cool on wire rack. When cooled, placed the cookies in small paper cups (for decoration only, can be omitted).

Verdict: Taste better the day it was baked.


Sparkle Sugar Sequins Melting Moments
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As for this, shape into balls, flatten it with a fork and sprinkle sugar sequins on top. A favorite for kids!

Saturday, October 29, 2005

Soy Braised Whole Chicken

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I posted the recipe under Soy Braised Cornish Hen, for the whole chicken, just double the recipe. I slow boiled it covered for 30 minutes on each side and then I uncovered it and simmer it further for about 10-15 minutes on each side, depending on the size of the chicken. Dish out the chicken and let cool. Thicken the sauce by simmering it down or add some cornstarch mixture to it. Later use the thicken sauce to pour on top of the cut out chicken to serve.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Sambal Belacan Sweet Potato Leaves

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Featuring one of my home cook dishes. This is my shortcut version of sambal belacan vegetable. Keep a canned of shrimp paste at home and you can whip up a belacan veggies anytime. :)

Ingredients

Sweet Potato Leaves
1/4 cup of dried shrimps, washed & drained
2-3 sliced shallots
2 Tbp. Caravelle shrimp paste in bean oil
1 Tbp. my homemade chillies in oil
1 tsp. belacan powder
salt to taste
sugar to taste

Method

Heat oil in wok, when hot, add in the shallots and dried shrimps. Stir well until fragrant, then add in the sweet potato leaves. Stir-fry until the veggies soften, add in the shrimp paste, belacan powder & chillies paste and a little water. Stir around and season with salt and sugar. Dish out and serves hot.

Note:
Good with kangkong, ladies fingers (or okra), Chinese long beans, esparagus and even Japanese eggplants.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Kung Pao Chicken

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Featuring one of my home cook dishes.

I cooked this chicken all the times. Love it while in M'sia, thus when I came over, I just have to crack my head to come out with this dish. Over the years, it becomes one of my master dishes. No exact recipe for this, all agaration. But here's what I use.

Kung Pao Chicken

Ingredients:
1/2 Onion, sliced.
1/2 Carrot, sliced.
2-3 Scallions, cut into 2 inches length.
Chicken pieces from 1 chicken breast (marinate in soy sauce, dark soy sauce & cornstarch).
6-8 Dried chilli peppers.
1 inch piece of Ginger, thinly sliced.

Sauce Mixture:
Soy sauce
Dark soy sauce
sugar

Thickening:
Cornstarch + water

Method:

Heat oil, add ginger, when fragrant, add chicken pieces, stir-fry until chicken is half way cooked, add in dried chilli peppers. Stir-fry until chicken is cooked, add onion and carrot. Stir to mix then add the sauce mixture. Let it boil for a while and add in the thickening. Serve hot!

Sunday, October 23, 2005

Stir-Fried Udon Noodle

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I love fresh Udon noodle. It's delicious eating it in soup or stir-fry. It's a quick lunch to prepare in soup, just add in some marinated chicken pieces or shrimps, fresh vegetable, tofu pieces and fresh mushroom and top it with fried shallots or garlics and fresh cilantro. Serve with a bowl of chilli padi in soy sauce, can I say yum?

Of course it's delicious in stir-fry too. Just add in your favorite ingredients and for the sauce, soy sauce, oyster sauce, dark soy sauce (if you prefer it dark), a little sugar and sesame oil.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Meme: Childhood Food Memories

Carrying on the baton from Lily's Wai Sek Hong

1. The giant shrimp cracker that I used to buy for 10 cent in my primary school. And then I dipped it in a special chilli sauce and enjoy it by hand. I bet a lot of people who came from that school will remember this giant chilli dipped shrimp crackers! :)

2. Everytime when the roti man rang his motorcycle horn to signal the arrival of him. And my mom would go out and buy the roti for tomorrow. Me and my siblings would go out with my mom and of course asked for little packets of snacks that were hanging on the containers at the back of the motorcycle. If my mom was in a good mood, she would buy those treat for us. Not sure whether they still sell roti this way?

3. My late grandma (dad's side) was a very good kuih maker. She used to make kuih-muih and sell when she was young. However, by the time we knew her, she was no longer in the selling business. But we got to enjoy her kuih everytime she came down to see us or when we visit her during CNY. She would make a variety of steamed kuih for CNY and it were always very good. Now, I really miss her yellow steamed radish kuih. She usually made it in big block and cut it into smaller pieces to pan-fry and serve it in the morning of CNY. YUM! I think all her knowledge and recipes of the kuih she made died with her as I don't think she copied her recipes down and passed it on to her daughters.

4. My mom's lettuce wrap that she made for CNY reunion dinner. I always enjoyed this dish, bite into a fresh crispy lettuce with stir-fried jicama, slices of soy sauce chicken and top with homemade chilli sauce, where juices dripped down on my fingers and I got to lick it off, such a fond memory. Not sure whether this is the authentic way to make the lettuce wrap, but it was how my mom made her.

5. Help to make CNY cookies at my grandma (mom's side) house. I was pretty young and anxious to help and they were making the kuih kapit (love letters) and kuih bunga (honeycomb cookies). You learned while you help and glad to say that I did. What was best was we got to take home big tins of cookies home with us. Hehehe... always a plus.

Now I would have to pass the baton on to,

Rantings from a Solitary Reverie

Monday, October 17, 2005

Glutinous Rice

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Made this last week using Amy Beh's recipe. I made this using the rice cooker and added too much water and thus the rice was too soft. I usually steamed the rice and the texture was just perfect. I have no idea where I boxed my steamer and thus the used of the rice cooker.

Sunday, October 16, 2005

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Abalone with Chicken Soup

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Look at the Abalone slices! They are not stingy about it.

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This is the packet that I used. Strongly recommended. :)

I tried to cook chinese herbal soup once a week. I will alternate different type of herbal soup to cook each week so that it's a new flavour every week. I just dump two chicken drumsticks and the packet above and slow simmer it for few hours. What a yummy and nutricious soup to drink. The abalone was so soft and got such a nice bite to it. My mother in-law sent me those from M'sia.

Monday, October 10, 2005

It's Snowing!!

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Her cheeky face!

It's a snow day today and very cold. This kind of day just make you want to curl up in bed and keep warm. Hmmm...a warm soupy noodle, beef stew sound very good now. Since it's the first snow of the season, we dressed her up and took her outside to snap some pictures. She sure love cold weather, not sure whether it got anything to do with she was born in cold weather??

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Chinese Red Bean Paste Cake



Finally I made my long awaited Chinese Red Bean Paste Cake! :D I got motivated after I saw it at SeaDragon blog. Since I have some red bean paste in the freezer and all the ingredients in the boxes, what the heck, let's do it. I adapted the recipe from Revised Chinese Snacks by Huang Su-Huei, published by Wei-Chuan's Cookbook.


Red Bean Paste Cake (Yield about 5~6 cakes)

Note: I modified this recipe to yield more thin pancakes. (updated Nov. 8, 2005)

3/4 cup all-purpose flour, sifted
2 large eggs
1 1/4 cup water

Red bean paste
Oil for frying
Plastic wrap for handling red bean paste

Step:

1. In a bowl, mix egg + water well. Add sifted flour and mix into a thin batter.

2. Grease a non-stick frying pan in medium heat. Add a scoop of the batter and rotate the pan to form a thin sheet. When cooked, remove and set aside. Do the same with the remaining batter.

3. Use a plastic wrap to press the red bean paste into square and transfer it to the center of the cooked sheet, remove the plastic wrap. Fold the sides of the sheet to the center to form a square shape. Seal the edges with some tapioca flour + water mixture ( 1 tsp. tapioca flour + 2 tsp. water). Do the same with the remaining sheet(s).

4. Heat the frying pan with 3 Tbp. oil and pan fry the square cake until both sides are golden brown and crispy. Remove and drain on paper towel. Repeat for the remaining cake(s). Cut the cakes into pieces and serve hot.

Note:

1. When making the thin sheet, make sure you wait until the sheet is set before attempting to remove it. If not, it will break apart. Since it's so thin, you don't even have to flip it over. When set, just remove it.

2. Make sure the red bean paste you use is sweet enough.

Sunday, October 02, 2005

Moved In

After 3 days of moving, glad to say that we finally settled down in the rented house. We closed our house on Friday morning and passed over the keys to the new owners. It was our first time meeting the new owners as well and they sure seem excited. We were tired out from all the moving and cleaning, furthermore had to wake up early in the morning to go to the title company. All in all, we were glad to sell our house because that's mean we will get to move into our new house when it's done. :D

The rented place is actually pretty nice eventhough it's a 30 years old house. It has new carpet, countertop and new paint so it's pretty decent looking. I like the backyard because it's open space so no one can look inside the house and I could open my blinds 24 hours a day. Love to sit on my patio while watching Evy plays in the backyard, privacy is bliss. Better enjoy it while the weather permit. :)

Well, I'm not going to unpack most of the stuff because we will be moving again in 4 months. Thus my living room and front entry are packed with boxes, sure serves as a storage area for now. But if I feel like baking, I sure know where to dig those boxes.