Thursday, March 29, 2018

Cooking with Thermal Cooker

Actually I own this thermal cooker for quite some time and its really under utilised! Today I have tried preparing a braised soy chicken and steamed rice together in the thermal cooker. I must say that I'm really impressed with the outcome of both dishes! The braised soy chicken only requires 15 mins of stove time whereas the rice 2 mins. Follow then both inner pots are transferred to the thermal cooker to finish the cooking process. I prepared the dishes at 12 noon and only open the pot at around 5pm. The rice is perfectly cooked and chicken meat is fall of bone! 

Braised Soy Chicken
Ingredient (4 servings)
  • 4 whole chicken leg
  • 400gm firm beancurd, each block cut into 8 pieces
  • 4 hardboiled eggs
  • 1 bulb garlic, lightly smashed
  • 5 slices ginger
  • 4 stalk spring onion, cut into sections
  • 2 star anise
Braising sauce :
  • 100ml low sodium light soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp dark soy sauce
  • 2.5 cups water
  • 2 tbsp Chinese wine
  • 20gm rock sugar, or to taste
  • 1/2 tsp pepper

  1. Blanch chicken leg in boiling water for 1 minute. Drain away water.
  2. Heat inner thermal pot over stove. Add in 2 tbsp oil. Add garlic, ginger, spring onion and star anise and fry until fragrant.
  3. Add light and dark soy sauce. Mixture will sizzle. Add water, sugar, wine and pepper. Bring to boil. Do a taste test and add more soy sauce or sugar if desired. 
  4. Place the blanched chicken leg, beancurd and hardboiled eggs into the braising liquid. Bring to boil again. Cover the pot slightly and simmer over medium heat for 15 mins. Turn off heat and cover the pot. Place the inner pot into the thermal cooker and close the lid. Let the residual heat continue to cook till the meat is tender for about 1 hour. 
To cook rice in thermal cooker : wash and rinse 2 cups of uncooked rice. Add water and grains into the small inner thermal pot. Bring to boil and stir the mixture well to prevent the grains sticking at the bottom of the pot. Cook over medium for 2 minutes without stirring. Transfer the inner pot into thermal cooker, cover lid and allow to sit for 30 mins. I've prepared and placed both dishes into thermal cooker at the same time and open the lid after 5 hours and it still stays hot enough to serve right at once! 

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Nonya Assam Fish

Tantalising nonya assam fish made from scratch, no prefaced sauce used! Spicy and sourish gravy, you could not resist having more serving of rice! 

Fresh herbs and spices

  • 400gm mackerel 
  • 40gm tamarind pulp + 400ml water
  • 5 okra, trimmed
  • 1 brinjal, sliced
  • 1 large tomato
  • 2 pcs kaffir lime leaf
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • salt to taste
Spice paste (blend till fine)
  • 10gm dried chilli, seeds removed and soak
  • 100gm shallots
  • 1 large clove garlic
  • 2 candle nut
  • 10gm galangal
  • 2 lemongrass (4" from the base)
  • 5gm toasted dried shrimp paste
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder
  1. Rub tamarind pulp in water and strain the water, discard the seeds. Heat 5 tbsp oil in wok and add spice paste. Fry over medium low heat  until the paste is glossy and fragrant.
  2. Add in tamarind water and bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer for 5 mins. Add in seasoning and adjust taste if desired.
  3. Put in fish, okra, brinjal, tomato and  kaffir lime leaf. Simmer on low heat for 3 mins. Gently flip the fish and simmer for another 2 min. Remove from heat and dish up. Serve immediately.
recipe ref : wendyinkk

Monday, March 26, 2018

Durian Muffins

No need to wait till durian season to get hold of good durian to make this little gems. I've actually freeze some good quality durian portion since last year....hahaha fridge clearing time. This recipe is definitely a keeper, very moist crumbs and pack with durian flavours! 

Ingredient (11 small muffins)
  • 100gm fresh milk
  • 250gm durian puree
  • 80gm fine sugar
  • 80gm melted butter
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 160gm self raising flour
  1. Combine milk and 100gm durian puree and whisk well to combine. Beat in sugar till sugar is well dissolved.
  2. Add in melted butter, egg and vanilla. Beat well to combine.
  3. Sift flour over egg mixture. Fold lightly till batter is formed. Batter will be lump, do not overmix.
  4. Scoop 1 tbsp of batter into muffin cases. Add in a dollop of durian puree and add another tbsp of batter filling 80% of the muffin cases. 
  5. Bake in preheated oven at 180 deg cel for 20 mins until the muffins are golden brown.  

Thursday, March 22, 2018

Airfry Char Siew Pork Ribs

My last attempt on baking a whole slab of pork ribs was using a slow cooker which the process took almost 4 hours! Even if using an oven the baking process will take at least 3 hours. I've done Chinese roast pork/ char siew using the air fryer, so I guess air frying a whole slab of pork ribs should be no problem at all. Just to need to play around with the heat and duration to get tender juicy meat instead dry burnt meat. 

  • 1 slab pork baby back ribs, approx. 780gm
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 5 tbsp char siew sauce
  • 5 tbsp tomato sauce
  • 5 tbsp light soy sauce
  • 1 tsp five spice powder
  • 1 tsp spice salt
  • 3 tbsp sugar
  • 4 tbsp Chinese wine
  1. Rinse pork rack and pat dry with kitchen paper. Use a sharp knife and make cuts on the meaty sections. (I used prime ribs therefore certain sections is quite thick)
  2. Combine minced garlic and all seasoning together and mix well. 
  3. Place the pork ribs into a large ziplog bag. Pour in the seasoning. Press out excess air pockets and seal firmly. 'Massage' the bag so that the marination is evenly coated all over the ribs. Chill in fridge overnight.
  4. Next day remove the marinated pork ribs from fridge, allow to thaw for at least 30 mins.  Preheat air fryer at 180 deg cel 5 mins. Remove the pork ribs from the marination and place on a lined baking pan. Strain the marinade, heat up in microwave for 2 mins. 
  5. Air fry at 180 deg cel for 20mins, flip over, brush some reserved marinade over and continue to airfry for 15 mins. Flip the ribs over again, meaty side up. Brush with more marinade and  increase temperature to 200 deg cel, air fry 15 mins until golden brown and cooked through, meat thermometer inserted in the thickest section of the meat should register at 80 deg cel.
  6. Remove pan from air fryer. Cover the pan with an aluminium foil and allow to rest for 20 mins before serving. 

I'm satisfy with my first attempt air frying char siew pork ribs! Its tender and juicy though not fall in the bone texture, but I'm happy with the results. 

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Nonya Kueh Dadar

Early morning made this pandan coconut crepe to satisfy my cravings! Yes I was frying the crepes and chomping down the rolls at the same time. 😝😝😝 Hahaha ignore the brown spots on the crepes. Though not perfect in appearance but texture and taste wise are 100%! ^0^

Ingredient (12 rolls)

Coconut Filling
  • 100gm gula melaka
  • 50ml water
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 blade pandan leaves, cut into sections
  • 250gm fresh grated coconut 
Pandan Crepes
  • 200gm plain flour
  • 150ml thick pandan juice
  • 250ml thin coconut milk
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp oil 
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  1. Prepare the filling : Finely chop the palm sugar. Place the water into a saucepan. Add in chopped palm sugar and cook over low heat till sugar are well dissolved. Add in salt, pandan leaves and grated coconut. Fry till mixture is heated through and fairly dry. Set aside to cool down. 
  2. Sieve plain flour into a mixing bowl. Stir in salt. Pour in thin coconut milk over the flour and stir well to combine.
  3. Add in pandan juice and cooking oil. Mix till a smooth runny batter is formed.
  4. Beat egg lightly and combine with the batter. Sieve the batter into another bowl.
  5. Heat a non-stick pan over low heat. Scoop about 1/4 cup of batter into pan and swirl the batter around to distribute it evenly. Remove the crepe when is set and cooked. Continue with the remaining batter.
  6. Place 2 tbsp of coconut filling over pandan crepe, roll up and serve. 

Monday, March 19, 2018

Pumpkin Abacus Seeds

Finally move my lazy butt to make some pumpkin abacus seeds! Simply love the colour combination of the pumpkin and yam abacus seeds! P.S. The yam abacus are blessed by my sister-in-law after my hands-on session of making abacus seeds with her. Homemade abacus seeds freeze very well. To freeze the dough, after rolling them into small beads, lay them in a single layer on a individual plastic sheet. Cover and freeze till hard, after which you can pack them all into a large ziplog bag. To cook, just bring a pot of water to rolling bowl and put in the frozen beads, DO NOT THAW!

If you know dried shrimp and dried cuttlefish are usually added in the traditional Hakka yam abacus seeds. Today I omitted both of the ingredients from my dish and replace with dried white baits!  No fix rule on what ingredients you should omit/add as long as it suit your own palate! Check out my other recipes like the traditional Hakka Yam Abacus Seeds and unique Chinese Yam Abacus Seeds!

  • 300gm pumpkin puree
  • 250gm tapioca flour
  • 50gm rice flour
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • 2 garlic, minced
  • 3 shallots, minced
  • 15gm dried white baits, rinsed
  • 30gm dried shiitake mushroom, soaked & sliced
  • 10gm black fungus, soaked and sliced
  • 150gm minced pork (lightly marinate with 1/2 tsp sesame oil, 1/2 tsp light soy sauce, dash of pepper, cornflour)
  • 2 tsp chicken seasoning powder
  • 1/2 tsp fish sauce
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1 tsp sugar 
  • 2 tbsp Chinese wine
  • 100ml water

  1. Combine flour in a mixing bowl. Steam pumpkin till soften and mash. Add in mashed pumpkin into flour mixture while its still hot. Add in oil and gather the mixture together with a fork till a rough dough is formed. Knead the dough till soft and pliable. Cover the dough with a damp kitchen towel. Rest the dough for 30 mins. 
  2. Pinch a small portion of dough approx. 5-8gm, roll round and make a indention to resemble abacas. Bring a pot of water to boil. Add in pumpkin abacus seeds (note: I used a mixture of 500gm yam  pumpkin abacus seeds. Balance uncooked portion can be freeze) and cook till they floated to the surface. Drain well and place them into a bowl. Drizzle in some oil and toss gently.
  3. Heat 2 tbsp oil in wok. Add in white baits and mushroom and fry till lightly brown. Add in garlic and shallots saute till fragrant.
  4. Add in marinated minced pork, use the spatula to break up the pork and fry till pork is browned. Toss in softened black fungus and mix well.
  5. Add in pumpkin/yam abacus seeds. Drizzle in seasoning gradually and toss to mix well till mixture are heated through. Dish up and serve.

Friday, March 16, 2018

Papaya Snow Fungus Sweet Soup 木瓜雪耳糖水

This is a perfect sweet dessert soup for this scorching weather! Just feel like lazying around at home in this crazy hot weather....zzzzz 

  • 30gm snow fungus
  • 3 blade pandan leaves, knotted
  • 2 tbsp Chinese almonds 南北杏
  • 2 large red dates (optional)
  • 500gm fresh papaya, cut into cubes
  • 100gm rock sugar
  1. Soak snow fungus until soften, for about 15 mins. Trim away the hard yellow section. Cut the snow fungus into small chunks.
  2. Fill a pot with 2.5 litres water. Add in snow fungus, pandan leaves, Chinese almonds and red dates. Bring to boil. Lower heat and simmer for 2 hours. (As I prefer a softer snow fungus, I cook it for 3 hours). 
  3. Peel and cut papaya into cubes. Add rock sugar and papaya, continue to simmer for 10 minutes until the sugar dissolve. Serve warm or chilled.

I love this sweet soup so much that the next I bought another papaya to cook another pot and chill it in fridge to enjoy slowly. This time round I omitted the red dates. 

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Mee Soto Ayam & Begedil

This is one of my favourite Malay noodle dish of all! With the help of instant Mee Soto instant paste, this meal is simple to assemble! My pantry is never short of herbs and spices, therefore it is fast to prepare a simple chicken stock base before adding in the spice paste. Oooh do not miss out the side dish, Begedil! Its so sinfully tasty! 

Begedil (Deep Fried Potato Patty)
Ingredient (10 pcs)
  • 700gm Brastagi Potato
  • 2 sprig spring onion, chopped
  • 1 sprig coriander, chopped
  • 50gm fried shallots
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 2 small beaten egg
  1. Peel and slice potatoes into thick slices. Heat some oil in pan, pan fried potatoes till both sides are lightly brown and cooked through. Drain well and place into a mixing bowl. Mash the fried potatoes. 
  2. Add spring onion, coriander, shallots, salt & pepper into the mashed potatoes. Mix well.
  3. Scoop up some mashed potatoes and shape them into compact and thick patty form. 
  4. Heat oil in a small saucepan. Dip the begedil into beaten eggs, drop into hot oil and fry till golden brown. Drain and serve.

Mee Soto Ayam (Malay Chicken Soup Noodle)
  • 4 whole kampong chicken leg
  • 2 litres water
  • 3 cardamons
  • 5 cloves
  • 2 star anises
  • 2 lemon grass, bruised
  • 5 kaffir lime leaves
  • 250gm Mee Soto instant paste
  1. Bring a pot of water to boil. Add in chicken leg and blanch for one minute. Drain away water. Fill the pot with 2 litres water and add in spices. Bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer for 1 hour. 
  2. Remove chicken leg. Cool down and shred the chicken meat. Return the bones to the stock and simmer till water reduce to about 1.2L.
  3. Add in Mee Soto paste and stir well to dissolve. Continue to simmer for about 10 mins. 

To serve : Place blanched rice vermicelli into serving bowl. Ladle in hot spice chicken soup, garnish with shredded chicken meat, hardboiled egg, beansprouts, fried shallots, chilli and coriander. Serve immediately with begedil at the sides.
  • soaked rice vermicelli, blanched
  • bean sprouts, blanched
  • hardboiled eggs
  • fried shallots
  • chopped coriander
  • chopped red chilli
  • shredded chicken meat

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Chinese Preserved Meat Rice 腊味饭

I think this is the only rice dish I prepare once a year! As you know the pricing of Chinese cured duck 腊鸭 and Chinese cured meat 腊肉 are rather steep and they are also very high in calories! Therefore once a while indulgence is more than enough hehehe.....

  • 100gm preserved pork belly
  • 100gm preserved duck
  • 2 Chinese sausages
  • 5cm ginger, julienned
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic
  • 400gm long grain rice
  • 350ml water
Sauce (mix well)
  • 1.5 tbsp oyster sauce
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1.5 tbsp light soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp water
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • dash of pepper

  1. Soak preserved duck in a pot of water for at least 1 hour to remove excess salt. Bring a pot of water to boil. Add in preserved duck and pork belly simmer for one minute. Drain away water. 
  2. Wash rice and drain well. Set aside.
  3. Heat 2 tbsp oil in wok. Add shredded ginger and fry till lightly brown. Add in garlic and fry till fragrant and brown. Add in rice and fry for one minute. Transfer the mixture into rice cooker. Add water and cook according to rice cooker instruction.
  4. Half way through the cooking process, add in Chinese sausages, preserved pork belly and  duck. Continue to cook till meat are softened.
  5. Remove all the preserved meat from rice cooker. Drizzle in sauce and continue to keep the rice warm till served. Slice all the steamed preserved meat thinly and serve with rice. 

Monday, March 12, 2018

Lemony Fish Pie

  • 3 russet potatoes, peeled and cubed
  • 30gm butter
  • 2 tbsp milk
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 300ml fish stock 
  • 2 tbsp plain flour
  • 250gm salmon fillet, cubed
  • 200gm grouper fillet, cubed
  • 120gm mussels meat
  • 150gm mixed vegetables
  • zest and juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 heap tsp fresh dill
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • egg yolk for glazing, optional
  1. Cook cubed potatoes in boiling water for 10 mins until tender. Drain away water. Mash with a fork and mix in butter and milk. Add salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.
  2. Melt 2 tbsp butter in pan, add onion and fry till lightly brown, for about 8 mins. Add in flour and mix well. Fry for 1 min till brown. Pour in stock gradually and stir to mix well. Mixture will start to thicken.
  3. Add in chopped dill, mixed vegetables , fish fillet and mussels. Stir and simmer for 5 mins. Add in salt and pepper to taste. Stir in lemon juice and zest. Remove pan from fire.
  4. Transfer mixture into a oven-proofed dish. Spread mashed potato over the surface evenly. Glaze the surface with egg yolk if using.
  5. Baked in preheated oven at 220 deg cel for 30 mins until golden brown and sauce is bubbly.

Friday, March 9, 2018

Airfried Thai Baked Chicken

Easy peasy baked Thai chicken using air fryer! Firstly blend the marination finely and spread over the boneless chicken thighs then chill overnight in fridge. Next day thaw it and pop them into air fryer and let it finish the job! 

  • 800gm boneless chicken thighs
  • 2 cups coriander 
  • 1 cup basil leaves
  • 1 large green chili, deseeded
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • thumb size ginger, sliced
  • 1 tsp fish sauce
  • 1.5 tsp black pepper
  • 3/4 tsp coriander powder
  • 2 tsp brown sugar
  • 200ml light coconut milk
  • fresh limes for garnishing 
  1. Place marinade in food processor and blend till smooth.
  2. Place chicken thighs in a ziplog bag. Pour in marinade and seal the bag tightly. Rub the marinade thoroughly all over the chicken. Place the bag of chicken into fridge and allow to marinate overnight. 
  3. Next day, bring the chicken to room temperature. Preheat air fryer ar 180 deg cel for 5 mins. Place the chicken thigh, skin side down, onto baking pan. Bake for 12 mins. Turn the chicken, skin side up. Increase temperature to 200 deg cel and continue to bake for 5-8 mins until skin is crisp and golden brown.
  4. Rest for 10 mins before serving. 

Thursday, March 8, 2018

Vanilla Cake with Greek Yogurt Chocolate Icing (Sugar Free)

A simple vanilla cake topped with luxurious greek yogurt chocolate frosting for my Mister's birthday! As my Mister is diabetic, so I incorporated substitute sugar for both the cake and frosting. The cake actually turned out fantastic! We all loved the moist and tender crumbs and the healthier low fat chocolate frosting! 

  • 120gm butter
  • 100gm XyloSweet
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 125gm top flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • pinch of salt
  • 125ml buttermilk
  • 120ml Greek yogurt
  • 100gm unsweetened dark chocolate 
  • 15gm butter
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
  • 50gm XyloSweet

  1. Grease and lined a 7" cake pan. Combine flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder and salt.
  2. In another bowl, cream butter and sweetener until creamy. Beat in egg and vanilla.
  3. Add in flour mixture, alternate with buttermilk into egg batter and beat until well incorporated.
  4. Bake in preheated oven at 180 deg cel for 35 mins. or until a skewer inserted comes out clean.
  5. Unmould and cool completely before frosting. 
  6. To pepare icing, dissolve dark chocolate and butter over bain-marie. Combine yogurt, vanilla and sugar in a mixing bowl. Mix well. Pour in melted chocolate and stir until well blended. Chill for one hour to firm it up before spreading over cooled cake.

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