Saturday, 28 February 2015

Eat Again~!

 The next day when I woke, I found myself crawling to the kitchen again. Another day, another different dish. This was on Tuesday and we had lesser people coming over. I have dumped ikan siakap and changed to ikan merah. Tilapia fillet is always welcome and I like salt water fish compared to fresh water fish.
The gravy for the fish overflowed so hubby transferred them to another plate.
I killed a big bird for the cast iron pot. It felt really good tearing at the tender chicken. Before long, hubby's friends started walking in to have another bout of reunion.
Looks like this kitchen seems to be a good place to reunite people. They had a good fun talk but I was so tired I collapsed myself on the bed upstairs then in less than an hour, from a cook in the house I turned into a driver. I'm glad hubby got to meet all his long lost friends.

Lunch & Dinner at Yen's Kitchen...

This was on Monday, the 5th day of Chinese New Year. The previous night I just tagged along with hubby to his reunion dinner and I had a load of fun taking photos. It was surely a joyful time to serve others. I just remembered swinging myself to the market and then lo' and behold, I was in the kitchen almost the whole day. Annie in da' house~! My best friend forever~! Then, hubby's friends from yester-years came as well. What's on the table?
Mi mama made two containers of omelette in order to get rid of the egg white left in a barrel. It was really thick and good.
That's bacon roll. In the morning when I started rolling this, I was thinking to myself why the heck I pick this tedious roll. The fish paste was so watery I thought it would never solidify into a proper roll. Then, after I started rolling the bacon and putting them aside before frying them, it became a solid bacon roll. Thus, I was really happy with myself. I'm a bit sorry for myself that the photo was a blur and I only had one piece of that photo. Argh~!
This was even more tedious. It's not even meat balls. They're tofu balls. Thank God we have lots of kitchen appliances and what-nots. Hubby has bought a packet of netting that can be used to squeeze out the water from the tofu then they were all deep-fried. If hubby wasn't around, maybe I would have pan fry them in a flatten style instead of making them into those shape.
Ohhhh....ooohhhh... this is so my kind of dish... with scallop and the fake abalone made of squid, braised peanuts and mushroom. When all were done and on the table, I began to panic. WHY NO MEAT????? No pork???? No chicken??? I went straight to slaughter the chickens...
The chicken did not grow fast enough. I didn't have much to offer but in the end, it was all enough. I always forget that everyone else was such a small eater. We were the biggest eaters. I eat more than the hubby. I need to serve a meat or two because I can't survive without them. 
It felt really awesome to see the plates empty. Whenever I go to restaurants that served fantastic food, I will lick the plates clean. The chefs would be elated to see the plates completely empty and sparkling clean. Do you know that it's really interesting to listen to the older person's stories? They have so much to tell, their experiences and everything. After hubby's friends have made a move, we called the neighbour over for tea break. Yeah, I know... we were just done with lunch.
This is mi best amiga, Annie from Sinkapoe... I forget to take the photo of our tea break. It was the best chocolate cheesecake by mi mama. Terrible me only brought it out after the guests have left. We kill that cake until we couldn't move anymore. And after that, horrible me forget to say goodbye to my friend when she left. Oh, why should I say goodbye to her? I can't wait for her next trip back. No need to say goodbye la... hope you're not offended though. You're not my guest, you're more like family. Family members are not that kind to each other... *hehehehe*
After everyone has left, all of us crawled to bed but I only had one hour of snoozing time because we had someone coming over for dinner~! That's Mabel and her hubby... her hubby not in the photo coz lazy me no more strength to take photos. Thank you for dropping by.... hehehhe....
I did some changes to the menu. The lunch groupie has no prawns because mi amiga, Annie, is allergic to prawns. Since she's allergic to prawns, no one else got to eat prawns. But this Mabel and hubby also no eat prawns. So, I ended up having an overdose of prawns. But it's my favourite so overdose also never mind.
I totally forgot about this can of longan in the afternoon so night time we had a great time slurping this sweet thing up. I was thinking maybe we should open up the house during Chinese New Year for next year but after standing in the kitchen for the whole day, I scraped that idea off completely. But I will still host parties once in awhile maybe in the field opposite so it wouldn't be too cramped inside the house. Just a thought.... just a thought....

Saturday, 21 February 2015

I Sleep, Hubby Cooks...

 I had a really good nap. Will you classify a 4-hour long sleep as a nap? 30 minutes of power nap wouldn't do for me. I'm not good in waking up early. While I was asleep, I dreamed that hubby cooked something out of the claypot and I was having a hearty meal. Then, when mi mama woke me up for dinner I thought I had woken up and already had my dinner, so why eat again? But when I got downstairs, I was a bit disappointed as there's no clay pot on the table instead there's this platter with vegetables.
And hubby was wrapping those up to be deep-fried. I ate that with mayonnaise. But the best dish I like was the braised meat...
Braised pork belly... nom nom nom.... hehehehe... Now I'm sleepy again...

Friday, 20 February 2015

Dinner with Friends...

So, we had a very different Chinese New Year celebration this year. Hubby's starting to meet up again with his ancient classmates. The last time they met was in the late 1970's. Sounds ancient to me because I haven't existed during those time. Those were cookie containers as we were all done with food. We have extremely good eaters here who finished up everything. No leftovers~! Yay~!!
This was quite a complicated dish with mushroom, vegetarian abalone, 5-spice bean curd, carrots and green bell pepper. Oh, there's also fresh button mushroom and I'm suppose to add another type of mushroom but the wok was threatening to overflow and I split those into two plates.
Orange pork which I regretted not braising them. I love juicy and tender pork unlike this one. Hhmmm... next time I'll braise every dish of pork..
This was by far the best that I've ever tasted. I'm really good with chicken dish. It's steam chicken and the flavour actually came from the spring onions. *slurp slurp*
Every year got fish. That's the direct translation from the Chinese saying which until today I have no idea what's the meaning of that phrase. Something went wrong with my plum sauce so I quickly changed the plum sauce into sour plum and let it simmer for a while before bathing the fish which has been steamed for 12 minutes.
Hubby made the best shark's fins soup. Shark's fin was of course fake but crab meat was real. Egg white was real as well. I love that soup. Love it to bits.
Of course we had dessert sponsored by Judz. And we had all the Chinese New Year cookies. Eventually every one was too full to eat up everything. So, will continue on Monday. Hubby's friends and my friends coming over on Monday and then I don't know when am I gonna start doing my paperwork. What a lazy bunch of people we are.
The group photo. We should be carrying lamb instead of rabbits. For rabbit year my rabbits will be famous~!

The Two Dishes For Today...

It's suppose to be kumquat prawns but since I did not know where to find kumquat in a bottle, I altered the recipe. I bought dried mandarin orange peels then I squeezed out the juice of one mandarin orange and started boiling them together for a few minutes. Then the prawns were sent in and viola~! I have a different dish altogether and since we never know the actual taste, it's okay then... 
This one was really something different altogether. The dried oysters were thrown in together with the lotus roots then I put in some pickled salted vegetables and velvet the marinated muscle meat. The taste was awesome~! 

Thursday, 19 February 2015

Yen's Dish Basin...

According to Google, 'poon choy' means Big Bowl Feast, but according to Yen, it's a basin with all the goodies. This is Yen's version of the reunion dinner basin pot. Xuan Xin restaurant was selling at RM199 but we wanted to make our own since cooking is not a big problem to any of us. So, instead of helping me in the kitchen, the hubby went upstairs to snore like a pig. It was actually really easy to prepare but it's best that you prepare each goody separately. The ones needed to be braised, please do so. The vegetables which needed to be blanched, please do so separately. We did some costing and the whole big basin cost roughly about RM87 minus hard labour. 

This is just my time preparing a washbasin with dishes, oh I used my largest claypot instead of my steel washbasin. Mi mama has already thought of something else to put in. You don't have to follow others or the ones that the restaurants are serving, just put in all those expensive stuff and arrange them neatly. I'm thinking of putting in something else already. Oh, abalone doesn't taste like rubber. It tasted like rubber once it has been over cooked. Just braised it for 15 minutes will do.
After making so many pineapple tarts, mi mama has a tub of egg white left. In order to use them up, mi mama found a recipe for this extremely soft cupcakes. Really nice... I have more food for tomorrow's breakfast... hehehehe

38 Years Later...

He's hubby's ex-classmate. And they found each other again through Facebook. Facebook wasn't that bad afterall, it depends on how you put it to good use. It was yesterday but since I'm still working, there wasn't much time to prepare anything ahead. It so happened that my menu was really short. I only have two dishes that I wanted to cook. That's all so I quickly baked a cake.
The baking temperature was only 150-degree Celsius. I froze looking at the temperature for the oven because I have been conned by a few recipes which required such baking temperature and it took forever to bake. I was praying hard that it would not be a failure or else I would have to run to the bakery outside to grab a birthday cake. It turned out to be perfect but there wasn't time to decorate at all. So, I released the task to the hubby. Hubby's friend wanted to give us a treat since it was his birthday but to me it didn't sound quite right. It should be the other way round so in order to have some time together to chit chat, we invited him over and surprised him with the cake.
I think I have started with Chinese New Year's traditional dishes since the beginning of the month. This is pork belly steamed with Chinese sausages. Surprisingly, it was really good. So steamed dishes are actually nicer than deep-fried if you know how to do it well.
I spent most of my time making assortment of balls. Prawn balls, meat balls and another one with chilli and spring onion, all floating in anchovy stock.Hubby's friend is such a small eater. If I were to cook up a storm, I don't think he can finish anything. Hehehehe.... We gave a portion of the cake to our plumber who came to our rescue at night. We had a wonderful chat with such knowledgeable plumber. I have a few slices more of the cake which I plan to swallow for tomorrow's breakfast. 

Wednesday, 18 February 2015

On A Bright Beautiful Day...

Waking up in the morning, peeping through the window and I saw the beautiful sun. I dashed off to grab my camera, pushed the window opened and starting snapping a few photos. Picture perfect~! A bright morning sun on a Monday morning, with a plane which just left the airport and a bird in flight. I grew up listening to the roaring sound of the plane engine landing and taking off. The plane was so huge outside the house but now that I'm staying further a little bit from the airport, that's the tiny view of the plane that I could see.
All of a sudden I was in a rush to prepare lunch so I just simply prepared a very simple meal. I'm such a big eater, I didn't feel anything going into the stomach at all. After having a big plate, I was so hungry but I had to leave the house already. Mi mama got both of us a new toy which we're going to spend our time using it~!!

Sunday, 15 February 2015

Holiday Mood... ON...

I only have one thing in mind for the Chinese New Year - sleep. I want to sleep. This afternoon I was undecided whether to do the weekly grocery shopping in Tesco after church or to leave it until tomorrow. I wouldn't want to rub elbows with other shoppers. There will definitely be so many people which makes me wonder, don't they eat on other days? They only eat during Chinese New Year? Then what happen to the rest of the days throughout the year? The wet market outside the house is really crazy... these people are buying meat and vegetables like there's no tomorrow. I refuse to follow the crowd so I don't go to the market as well. I sleep the whole afternoon away and woke up to see what I have to cook for dinner.
Lack of chicken thighs so chop them into pieces. When you chop then into small pieces, it's like playing tricks to your eyes. Those small pieces makes you think like there's a lot of chicken meat. A person can chomp on the whole thigh yet feel like it's not enough, but the same person might not able to finish 3 pieces of chicken that has been cut even though it's only three-quarter of a piece of the same thigh. Weird how our mind perceive....
Chinese cabbage... can't be found in the refrigerator... but leftover half of a whole cabbage, yes... still around... Pork belly, available... everything else yes so I made this...
Whole fish, no tienen *Spanish*... white tilapia, yes.... Pork slices, yes.... no problemo in making this then. Spring onion can be found aplenty. My kitchen looks very complete but the freezer is almost empty. I need to go grocery shopping for tomorrow's lunch. *roar*... I want to sleep...
Mi mama's bakkwa is here~! The thickness is more than it should be but I still like it~!!! *woots woots* I want to sleep.... should I buy those abalones or not? Should I or should I not? Undecided.... If I have the time tomorrow then maybe I'll drag myself to the supplier and lug them abalones home...

Valentine Love...

Last Thursday I decided to make a loaf of bread to go with my kaya. But after not making a bread for months, I don't remember which button to press. Thus, I pressed the wrong button and instead of setting the program 3 hours 25 minutes, it went to 58 minutes. I was wondering what went wrong with the bread maker. Whatever happened to the 3 long hours and how did the time become shorten by so much. I didn't know what to do and I let the bread maker walked its way. After 58 minutes, obviously there's nothing much to rejoice.
Oh, other than spoiling the bread, I destroyed my first batch of kaya also using the bread maker. It's suppose to be able to make kaya but I think I might have pressed the wrong button again to fast forward baking. So, hubby rescued both the bread and the kaya. The bread as you can see was loaded with 200g of raisins, madness me poured everything in to make raisin bread but I ended up with a perfect white loaf. Hubby baked the premature loaf of raisin bread in the oven then it became some sort of a bread and cake. Then that kaya was rescued and it tasted so much like banana yogurt, and I wonder how did that happen. Both became extremely delicious and my kitchen crew highlighted that all our spoiled food turned out to be the best of all.
Today is Valentine's Day or should I say yesterday was Valentine's Day... with the huge loaf left cut in slices, I wanted to have bull's eyes on the toasted loaf but I became lazy after going for a shopping spree with hubby. I was thinking of digging a hole on the toast and make a heart shape for hubby but I didn't offer my thoughts to him. Somehow or other, he could still read my mind. He gave me this for my lunch... and I love him so. He's definitely more creative than I am.
The biggest love of all with two small Bombay toast small hearts and my Babitto's signature design of a rabbit head. That's cheese slice.
We couldn't finish this so left this for my precious as her lunch as well. She can survive with eggs only while I can survive on bread alone. Hubby could survive on air... hahhahaha

I love you... thank you for your creative surprise~! I'm more surprise that you could read my mind...

Wednesday, 11 February 2015

Sitting On the Table...

 I have a plate of eggplant with sliced muscle meat stir-fried with a mix of green and red chillies waiting for the hubby. Another method in dishing out great platter would be to marinade the meat with seasoning then while cooking, you can totally forget about the seasoning completely. Add some water and all the acquired and required taste would sizzle out in no time at all. That's the best method to cook. That's a statement that requires no experiment. It's no a hypothesis. It's a conclusion after I cooked that way for more than a decade. No, it's not a lazy person's way of cooking. It's a smart way of cooking as the taste would all go directly into the meat.
You've heard of Coca-Cola chicken and Root Beer chicken. This is my Ice Cream Soda chicken mixed with sake. The taste was awesome. That's all I can say. I'm a fan of chicken.
My first time cooking with sour mustard. I bought only one fish which I used up on Monday. I totally forget about today. There's extra white fish in the freezer drawer. So, used them directly as I do not have any extra time in hand to rush to the market. Yesterday when I went to the market, I ran to and fro like I'm going for a marathon. I ended up two minutes late to work. And I drive like F-1 racer every morning. *sigh*

I wanted to bake a nice loaf of bread. But I think I just make a terrible mistake with the bread maker. Looks like I have to wait for hubby to come back and rescue my loaf. Maybe he will turn it into something wonderful :D

Tuesday, 10 February 2015

Kaya = Rich.... Saya Buat Kaya = I Make Rich???

When hubby mentioned that he wanted to surprise me with pulut tatai, I have other things in mind. Yesterday's sambal tumis pulut was one of the ideas I had. Today, hubby made the nangka seri muka that yellow pieces were not mango but honey jackfruit. It tasted just like the mango pudding of Thai-style.
That's how it looks like after left to cool. We had a few pieces only, while the neighbour came to grab some home and tomorrow we'll give everything away to hubby's workplace. I don't have any more storage left in the refrigerator and I'm going to cook something else for tomorrow. No room in the tummy to store so many other types of food, too.
When we first bought the breadmaker, I remembered very well that the salesman said that the breadmaker can be used to make kaya. Kaya in direct translation means rich. I don't know what is it in English. Don't have the strength to Google to check it out. You can go ahead and find out about it. There are only four things needed here. Eggs, sugar, fresh coconut milk and screw pine leaves. After an hour and 5 minutes, the bread maker destroyed all my hopes and dreams of making kaya. I ended up doing it the old-school style. I had been thinking for many years how come hubby never buy me a double boiler. We never had a double-boiler so how am I going to make kaya? While stacking up pots and more pots into a box, I realized that I DO HAVE A DOUBLE BOILER all these while~!!!! There... there... and I'm using them everyday separately. *sigh*
After stirring from the marble wok and straining the mixture, the stirring continues in the double-boiler. You need to keep on stirring in order to get such smooth texture. I will kill anyone who asks me to make kaya again. I planned to spend my night sitting in front of the computer, but I ended up standing in the kitchen. When I was beating the eggs and sugar, I got a really big amount of mixture. I thought I would make a big tub of kaya but since I lack in experience, after stirring, I got only one tiny bowl of kaya. 
I wanted the kaya just because of my blue glutinous rice. It's really blue not because of blue dye. It's seriously natural from our blue pea flowers in our garden. You just need some skills to really get the colour out. The kaya was really delicious but all glutinous rice will leave the house early tomorrow morning. I will just keep the kaya for a few days. Will think of what to do with it... Maybe I need to start making bread.