Monday, November 28, 2005

Simple Thanksgiving Dinner for Two

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As the title said, it's simple and quick to prepare. As most of you probably know, I'm lazy when come into preparing an elaborate meal especially just for the two of us. So, I had been cracking my head of what to cook on Thanksgiving night that's super easy to make.

I bought some brussel sprouts since it was on sales and I remembered watching Ina Garten (Barefoot Contessa) baked her brussel sprouts and according to her, crunchy on the outside but soft on the inside. So, I got to try it. Bought some baking potatoes too so why not baked it together with the brussel sprouts right. And I got the idea of pan-frying the turkey breasts from Rachael Ray (30 Minutes Meal), quick and easy. I cut my turkey breast thinly into slices so it's faster to cook compared to the whole turkey breast.

Baked Brussel Sprouts:

Preheat the oven to 400'F. Line a baking pan with aluminium foil and spread the washed and trimmed brussel sprouts on top. Sprinkle with EVOO, a generous amount of salt and freshly ground black peppers. Coat and mix everything together with your hands. Baked for 20-25 mins.

Potato Wedges:

Washed the skin of potatoes until clean. Cut and quarter the potato into wedges. Again spead it on aluminium foil covered baking pan. Sprinkle with EVOO, salt, black peppers, paprika and garlic powder. Mixed everything together with your hands. Baked in preheated 400'F oven for 20-25 mins. Turned the potato wedges over half way through baking.

Pan-Fried Turkey Breasts: (you can substitute it with chicken breasts)

Sprinkle the thinly sliced turkey breasts with EVOO, sage powder, salt, black pepper and garlic powder on both sides. Heat a frying pan with a little EVOO and pan-fry the turkey breasts until cooked. Do not overcook the turkey breasts as it will turn hard and dry. Take out the cooked turkey and place on a plate. Pour some white wine (that you drink) to deglaze the pan (or as the cook called it, to get all the good stuff out). When thicken add about 1 Tbp. or 2 Tbp. of butter into the sauce. Stir until the butter melted. Now, pour the sauce over the turkey breasts to serve.

Sunday, November 27, 2005

Vinegar Green Chillies

I love to make all sort of chillies to accompany the dishes that I cook. Here's another one of them. Love it with wor tan hor and wontan mee.

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Marinating in a glass bottle and stored in the refrigerator.

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What it looks like.

This chillies is very easy to make. All you need are 2 ingredients, Jelepeno green chillies or Serrano green chillies and diluted white distilled vinegar. For those in Asia, use any green chillies you think is right for this.

Sliced the green chillies and put it in a glass bottle and then pour the vinegar on top to fill the bottle. Let it sit overnight on your kitchen counter and then put it in the refrigerator to store the next day.

Note: Make sure the green chillies you bought got a little kick to it. I once bought a wrong kind of green chillies which has no kick (or heat) at all and the end result was not satisfactory to me. Oh yeah, gave some to Lily so she should know. Hehehe...

Thursday, November 24, 2005

Pork Floss

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Pork Floss, my favorite snack as a kid. Love it sandwich in bread or mix in with porridge. My mom used to make it for us. So when I came over here, I just have to ask her for the recipe. She told me how to make it and what sauce to use but not the measurement.

As in all Chinese cooking, estimation is the best to go. I have not seen a Chinese cook using a measuring spoon for all his cooking before, what he does is do a taste test and then season to taste. Cooking is definitely a skill, so practise makes perfect. One needs to cook, the more you cook, the more you know how much sauce to add or what sauce or seasoning to use to create a balance flavor. With these knowledge, it also allow you to create new dishes and new flavor.

Okay, back to topic, as you can see my pork floss is not flossy enough. I might have used the wrong part of the pork (frankly I can't tell what is what, just used whatever pork I have in the fridge) or I didn't fry it long enough, no clue! Anyway, here's the recipe so you might do better than me.


Pork meats, cut into strips (I used about 2 1/2 cups)
Soy sauce
Double black soy sauce
Sweet soy sauce
A dash of salt
4 tsp. Sugar


1. Covered the pork with some water and boiled it. When boiled, dished out the inpurity. Add in (A), lower the heat to low and simmer until the pork is tender (with lid), about 2-3 hours. After that, open the lid and let it simmer until the liquid thicken and almost evaporated. Dished out the pork to cool. And then shred the pork with your fingers.

2. Heat the wok with low fire and pan-fry the pork until dry and flossy. Might take an hour or more. Keep in a container when cool. For this recipe, I only yield about 1 1/2 cups pork floss, not much.

Verdict: I thought it would be hard because it was not flossy but was I wrong. It actually pretty good, much to my surprise and even my daughter loves it. But I still prefer the flossy texture though, now who can enlighten me on how to get that texture? ;) Fry until my hand break or there is a particular part of the pork to use for this? *Help!*

Monday, November 21, 2005

Josh's Braised Pork Belly

I bought a piece of fatty pork from my local supermarket the other day thinking of making Lily's roasted pork belly (siew bak). And then I came across Josh's braised pork belly and I thought this would be best suited for my wontan mee. He provided step-by-step pictures in his recipe so that was easy to follow.

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Braising the fatty pork.

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Dish out to cool before slicing.

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I added tau kwa (deep-fried hard tofu) in the last hour of braising as well.

Verdict: Very delicious, the pork fat just melted in your mouth and the seasoning was just right, very flavorful. Hence, the tau kwa was also very flavorful. He said you can add hard boiled eggs in it as well.

You can get his recipe at under Asian Red Meat. I would cut down the oil to 3 Tbp. instead of the stated 6 Tbp. next time I make it. Because while making this dish, I kept scooping out the oil on top. :P

Sunday, November 20, 2005

Wontan Mee (Wontan Noodle)

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Using Josh's braised belly pork recipe, I served my braised fatty pork with wontan mee. Blanched some baby boy choy to serve as side dish and made some shrimp wontans soup. As for the soup, I was using Maggi no MSG ikan bilis (dried anchovies) granules, a little salt, baby boychoy, frozen mixed vegetable and shrimp wontans. Top with chopped scallion and crispy shallots.

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Click below for Shrimp Wontan recipe:

Friday, November 18, 2005

My little artist

Evy loves to draw. She has been asking for a pen or pensil since she was 1 year old. Until these days, drawing is still her favorite playtime. Just give her a piece of papar and a pen and she would sit by herself, doing her own thing while talking to herself. :)

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"Look here Evy. Mommy wants to take a picture of you."

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"Give mommy a smile!"

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Gina's Yam Kuih

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I made Gina's yam kuih yesterday. You can get the recipe at Kitchencapers under Asian steamed kuih.

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After it was pan-fried in the morning.

Verdict: It was a bit dry and hard to me. Thus I pan-fried it in the morning. Definitely tasted better as the oil gave it some moisture. Good with chilli sauce.

Monday, November 14, 2005

Dried Crunchy Bread Strips

Seriously I didn't even know what this is called. But it's dried, it's hard & crunchy and it's made of bread cutting into strips. Therefore, this name is born.

My mom used to make this snack for me and my siblings when we were young and we always enjoyed eating this crispy sweet treat. Thus when I came over to the States, I just have to make it. I remembered my sister and I were trying to make this bread while in the college dorm but we failed miserably because the bread remain soft in the middle. At that time, I had no idea what went wrong and we never make it again (At that time, I was neither a cook nor a baker, merely a 20 year old college girl).

While I was watching Paula Deen on the Food Network this evening making her dressing for All-Stars Thanksgiving dinner, she mentioned she used days old bread to make her own dried bread for the dressing and baked the bread at low temperature to dry the bread.'s just clicked. I have some bread sitting in the fridge so why not experiment with it right? Ta...da...

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The butter & sugar ones.

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With Milo added.

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When cooled, packed away in a plastic container.

Saturday, November 12, 2005

Chilli Oil

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Malaysian just love their food spicy and what's best to spice up your food but some chilli oil. :) I made my own chilli oil because it's super duper easy. All you need is 3 ingredients and a clean glass bottle.


1 cup Canola oil
1/4 cup Crushed red pepper flakes
2 Tbp. Cayenne pepper powder (to turn up the heat)


In a small saucepan, turned the heat to medium and heat up the oil. When heated, (dropped a little of the crushed red pepper, if it sizzle, it's heated) add the crushed red pepper flakes and cayenne powder, turned off the heat and stirred around. Moved to cool and leave it overnight. The next day, strained the chilli oil in a glass bottle.

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As for the remaining strained chilli, you can reserved it for cooking or throw away. I used this to cook my Kung Pao Chicken, fried rice, fried noodle, etc or as a dip. To use as a dip, add some soy sauce and sesame oil to it.

My secret to delicious ground meat spaghetti, drizzle some chilli oil on your serving and fold to mix. Instant lift to the spaghetti and simply yummy!

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Cheese Wontan or Crab Rangoon

Cheese Wontan which is also called Crab Rangoon is another Americanize food in the Chinese restaurants here. When I first came here, it was a surprised taste to me and not quite sure what it was. But over the years, it has become one of my favorite appertizers. It almost included in every lunch & dinner special menus these days. Got to love this little snack!

Well, since I bought some cream cheese the other day and got some wrappers in the freezer, why not try my hands on making this delectable snack right? So, here my afternoon experiment and verdict.

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The Twin Dragon wrappers that I used and recommended.

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Cheese filling that I came out with.

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Before deep-frying. I can't seem to wrap it nicely in this shape. Hehe...

After deep-frying.

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Cut open for a peek inside.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Guess what it is?

Look what I found in the market the other day! It must have been the first time I saw this or I have never paid attention at all. It looked so fresh and pretty that I just got to buy it and try. And it's called Broccoflower. The mixed of broccoli and cauliflower, brillient!

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This was what I cooked for dinner. Just some easy stir-fry with imitation crabmeats and carrot. The verdict, it tasted just like cauliflower. I like it! Not sure whether the benefit of both veggies will be combined in one though, if yes, excellent! (or lagi bagus! in Malay)

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Do give it a try if you see it in your local supermarket. :o)

Monday, November 07, 2005

Pork Wontan

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Featuring one of my home cook dishes. Who wouldn't love deep-fry food? Deep-fry wontan is very common these days and it comes with all kind of fillings or you can simply create your own with what you have in your refrigerator and pantry. Any filling will be good as long as you seasoned it well. Furthermore, it's very easy to make.

Friday, November 04, 2005

Lazy Chicken Rice

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Featuring one of my home cook dishes. Why I called it lazy chicken rice is because this dish is very easy to make. Another one of my easy shortcut version. Of course you can serve it with fresh slices of cucumber and a bowl of clear chicken soup.

Ingredients for the Chicken Rice:

~Chopped garlic
~Chopped ginger
~Chopped shallot
~Canned Swanson chicken broth

Sauce for the cooked rice:
Soy sauce, sugar, sesame oil and chopped scallion.

Main Ingredient:
Chicken breasts, cut and marinate in soy sauce, dark soy sauce, garlic powder and cornstarch.


1. Wash the rice & drain. Heat up the wok with a little oil, add in the chopped ingredients and stir-fry until fragrant. Add in the rice and stir well to mix til dry up. Transfer to the rice cooker and add in the canned chicken broth, give it a little stir. Cook as normal.

2. Heat soy sauce and sugar in microwave safe bowl for about 30 minutes. Stir until sugar dissolved. Add in some sesame oil and chopped scallion. This sauce is to be pour on top of the cooked chicken rice before serving.

3. Heat up wok with a little oil and stir-fry the marinated chicken pieces until cooked.

4. To serve: Place a ball of chicken rice in the center of the plate, top with chicken pieces and then pour the sauce on top of the chicken. Garnish with cilantro on top and slices of cucumber on the side. Serve with garlic-ginger chillies sauce.

Click for Garlic-Ginger Chillies Sauce recipe:

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Sweet Bread (Pai-Pau)

I used Jerseymom's recipe from KC. What prompted me to try this bread was the great reviews given by those who had tried it and posted their pictures. It looked really soft and easy to make.

I encountered minor problem in the beginning because I forgot to add an additional milk to replace the water used for her yeast. I was using instant yeast and it doesn't require that step. Thus, my dough was not wet enough so I just improvised by adding more melted butter and oil to make it pliable. *I only remembered about the liquid after I done kneading the dough* One more obstacle I encountered was it was a cold day and my dough just won't proof or double in size. I tried the warm water in the microwave trick, managed to proof a little, and that's about it. So, I just crossed my fingers and hoped for the best.

Was I glad that it turned out alright after all. Got to taste one when it was still warm from the oven and it sure soft to the bite. I brushed the top with maple syrup and it added to the sweet taste of the bread. A yummy sweet bread indeed and a recipe to keep. Thanks Jerseymom! :o)

The real challenge comes tomorrow since this is the first time I made bread without any bread improver, hope that it will still remain soft.

Verdict: It harden the next day but a quick pop in the Microwave solved the problem (10 seconds for one).