Tuesday, 31 March 2015

Claypot Chicken Rice...

Monday. Grocery shopping time. Decided to make claypot chicken rice. Hubby said it was really good and I felt so, too. Self-praise is no praise at all but I know it's good, who cares.... Salted fish is a must put in this dish and also Chinese sausage. Chicken must be well marinated and the rest is history. You don't need to be an expert to make this but you still need to know how to make it taste the best. 

Monday, 30 March 2015

Creating Macau in the Kitchen...

I have handed the kitchen to the hubby to prepare difficult and top notch dinners. I have calculated that if I spend the only day that I'm not working by standing the kitchen, life will be very meaningless for me. I will end up having done nothing that I really wanted to do. Thus, I asked hubby to skip his afternoon nap which lasted for many hours to jump straight to the kitchen to prepare dinner. Hubby is slow in preparation but I refused to help or else I will be the one doing all the cooking. I let him take his own sweet time while I starved upstairs doing what I like.
Giant Shrimp a la Macau...
Macau was a Portuguese reigned for many years. When I was in Macau, I did not get to seriously taste the authentic food in the restaurant. We have marched up to the front door of the restaurant just to see so many people lining up like they are going for audition for American Idol or whatever talent show. Maybe they were waiting to be interviewed to work at the casino. To our dismay, all of them were waiting for an empty table in the restaurant. Since we were not staying over in Macau, thus we have really limited time to spare in hand. The wait would be roughly around 2 hours and at that point of time lunch time was already creeping into tea time. If the wait was for 2 hours, that would be going into dinner time. We left and thus, the chance to taste Macau food vanished into thin air. 

So, yesterday, I asked hubby to create Macau in our kitchen, minus the gambling den of course. That's Giant Shrimp a la Macau. It's quite spicy with the use of 8 chillies. But we don't really know what type of chilli does Macau use in their cooking. It's different from Chinese cuisine though.
Macau Chicken...
Then, we had this Macau Chicken dish with coconut gravy. It's superb. Other than coconut milk gravy, the use of freshly grated coconut added to the taste. There's potatoes, tomatoes and hard-boiled eggs. One of this should be enough on any other days but we hardly settle for one dish menu in our kitchen.
Caldo Verde
This is Macau's style of soup. It's called Caldo Verde with Chinese sausage and vegetables. Nice soup I should say. We will not go to Macau again because we really don't have anything to do there except to walk around. None of us gamble and what I like most was the Portuguese egg tart by Kok Kei. Kok Kei is not overrated. It's really nice. There's another overrated Portuguese egg tart which I don't really remember the name of the stall.

Thank you love... So I cooked for you 4 days and you cook 1 day... fair la...

Thursday, 26 March 2015

Smoked "Pu Er" Chicken...

My first time smoking. Sounds very wrong. It's my first time smoking chicken. Also sounds wrong. Three whole chicken legs were smoked in a non non-stick pan. If you were to use a non-stick pan, you would surely spoil that non-stick coating when you place the aluminium foil on it. I know because it has been tried and tested. I literally destroyed two non-stick pans many years ago because I placed aluminium foil on it. How would I know it's not meant to be used in such a way? It's not written anywhere. So learnt through experience. I used the old school wok to smoke those whole chicken legs with "pu er" tea leaves. Mix the tea leaves with some rice and brown sugar, once it started to smoke let it smoke~! Cover for 6 minutes and that's what you will get. Flip those legs and cover for another 6 minutes.
You will have to try it to know what's the taste like. It's fantastic~! And it's easy to make. No fuss at all.
Made some meat balls with mixed vege. I'm getting better at making meat balls. The taste was great, too. Two dishes... really simple and *burp* excuse me... Need to go to work now...

Pumpkin & Fried Chicken...

Finally, I realized how to cut a pumpkin without hacking it using all my strength. Usually after hacking the whole pumpkin, I would be totally exhausted. Yesterday, I was staring at the pumpkin and I was thinking those lines must have its good use. So, I turned the pumpkin upside down and started slicing according to those lines and it was easy as heck. Before long, the whole pumpkin was done. It first I wanted to hack the pumpkin into halves and just use half of it but since it was so easy to slice the pumpkin. I ended up using the whole pumpkin.
This is a very simple pumpkin dish with snow peas, baby sweet corn and black fungus. I added some roasted chestnuts for the fun of it. Then, it was done after shaking all the home made food enhancer.
I made the best fried chicken yesterday according to the hubby. The chicken was marinated with milk and Chinese wine. The taste was.... hehehehehe.... of course, I have my concoction of secret marinades. All of us have those secret marinade especially the hubby.

Tuesday, 24 March 2015

Cooking Hubby's Favourite...

It's not a difficult dish. Marinade the minced meat and let it go through the mincer once again. Double mincing makes a better texture. Cut the bitter gourd according to the height that you wanted for this green palace. Then, remove the seeds and pith. Stuff the meat, pan fry and ta da~!
The first photo was that of really hard bitter gourd. Then, let it simmer for 25 minutes or so. I almost fainted with the horrible bitter smell. I have to taste whether it's good enough or not and my tongue got a shock at how bitter it was. Paracetamol tastes better when stuck on the tongue. This was really bad. I precisely said to my precious dish that this would be the dish both of us would not touch. But she wanted to be a little bit more adventurous and took one huge piece. Double mistake done at one go. She took a big bite and told me it was extremely B.I.T.T.E.R. I reminded her that just before we started eating, I told her it's not our kind of dish. So in the end she had to swallow the big piece but she said the meat was good. Hubby came back from work and had a good lunch. According to the hubby the bitter gourd was not that bitter.
Hubby wanted more greens on the table. I feel like I'm cooking something out of the moon. That's a plate of French beans stir-fried with eggs and decorated with salt-roasted peanuts. I was okay with this dish but hubby wanted more greens. I think I have enough green for the day.
I simmered the chicken with some herbs given to us in a hamper by Eu Yan Sang. Mi mama loved the soup but to me, I needed a few spoonful of soy sauce to rescue the soup. The whole chicken legs were obviously very tender after being slow simmered for 1.5 hours. Tomorrow, I will cook something I want to eat. It's my turn~!

Plain Ol' Chinese Cuisine...

I'm very much into Chinese cuisine because before long, I want to cook for my family in China. I cooked different dishes everyday to try out new stuff where you can never get it from restaurants or economy rice stall. Like it this way. Came across this recipe using vegetarian fish but I could not understand why not just eat the real fish. God blessed us with all these as nourishment to our body. Used the black tilapia and used up the leftover green and red bell peppers. The fish was deep fried first. I changed my grocery shopping venue already from Tesco main to Tesco Extra. Tesco Extra has improved a lot where the quality of fresh food was up one level, no longer looked like second grade. Maybe also because I went to the right timing when all the fresh produce were just released.
This is using chicken breast meat but it was tender. Rub some salt to make them tender. It was spicy because the dried chilli I used was that of extra spicy. The curry leaves were plucked from the garden. I need a garden with herbs.
This is one very messy dish which I cooked for the hubby. There's the leftover yellow bell pepper and added some black fungus. I have cut some strips of muscle pork meat and the whole brown cuttlefish. The white soft stuff was hubby's favourite bean curd stick. All three dishes looked rather like a big mess in different plates. 
Busy people don't eat dinner, instead we had supper after work. It was quite difficult to get nice looking maize in Tesco. Usually they were all dried up but we got really good bargain. How to know whether they look nice or not? Peel the skin and peep lor... I learnt all these from different different aunties, some taught me how to remove those onion skin, chicken skin and cabbage layers that aren't so beautiful anymore then I wouldn't have to pay for them. I didn't do such thing yet lor... I feel that the few grams of dried onion skin wouldn't hurt my pocket. There was once an auntie cannot stand how I didn't peel off the dried skin so she did it for me. Muahahahaha...
Suddenly mi mama saw this small box of new kitchen tool that the hubby bought and kept on top of the shelf nicely, away from my sight. Mi mama said she knows how to use. Hubby bought but dunno how to use. Yay~! I got corn in a cup instead of having to bite on a cob...

Monday, 23 March 2015

One Week Away...

For the whole of last week, I was away from my kitchen. I replaced almost 90% of my classes that were cancelled end of last year. So, it was a really hectic week from 8a.m. until 10p.m. Before the start of the busy schedule, my precious baked that lovely rich chocolate cake. It was really good. No wonder her first ambition was to be a baker and now that was just left as the 'first ambition' buried together with all her primary school books. I don't know where she got the idea that she would want to be a baker when she grows up.

The whole week was quite crazy. I only remembered getting up from bed and the next moment, I was in the car and on the road. Hubby took over the kitchen as he has less classes.
There was one Tuesday that I thought he made fried rice but it turned out to be the best glutinous rice. I wonder where he got the recipe from but he said it's all from his head. Yeah, most of his recipes whether perfect or totally not edible, came from his own mind.
There was another day he made this. The taste was exactly like that prepared by 'chu char' eh chefs. In conclusion, I don't need to go out to have good food. I can just sit around at home and wait for food to appear on the table.
Mi mama made this pork trotter with soy sauce I think. Cannot be black vinegar ma... *slurp slurp slurp* It's just half of the trotter. I never buy half a trotter before. I always buy the whole trotter.
Hubby's concoction of teriyaki chicken was superb. Anything from hubby is good.
Then, I had my soft-boiled eggs for breakfast on a Sunday. The browned waffles were not waffles. They were bread squashed in waffle maker. The other one was cheese waffle. Good breakfast we had on a Sunday morning.
My Babitto died suddenly and we got this rich peanut butter Sunnyside ice-cream to drown our sorrows. I know what snuffed Babitto's life just in a click of an eye. I regretted being so busy and tired or I would have more cuddle time with him. Babitto went off to heaven earlier.... have a great time hopping around in God's garden. 
Actually we wanted to have shaved ice but after checking out the price, my wallet shut down automatically. It's RM14.90 and for the ice-cream it was roughly RM6.90 per scoop so we bought the whole 1.65 litres tub and we had four scoops each and we still have some more. No worries about how many scoops we wanted to have.
Just yesterday, hubby prepared dinner. This was really good. It's baked black tilapia. We eat cheap fish. A black tilapia cost us only RM4.99.... RM5 la.... but when the price RM4.99 was mentioned, it sounded a lot cheaper. RM5 sounded really expensive.
We had mussel basmathi rice instead of risotto. I don't know where to get risotto but since risotto was just another type of rice from a Western country, it's okay to replace risotto with whatever rice grain you could get. After cooking for more than a decade, neither of us bothered much to follow any recipes to the dot. None of us followed the measurements for ingredients as well.
Hubby then prepared onion soup. It was really smooth but a bit to the salty side. We're still perfecting our cooking but it's rather difficult as we never repeat what we cooked.

Saturday, 14 March 2015

Tomorrow's Breakfast...

I want a cake. Just craved to have a cake. My precious is around doing nothing. Asked her to bake me a cake and she said okay. But what cake? I asked her to simply pick a book and I will randomly open up a page. My first pick was the red velvet cake but I have done that page twice already. I randomly turned to another page and landed on the chocolate Valentine cake.

It's not Valentine's Day and I have no care for any occasion. I glanced through the ingredients and ticked them off mentally. There's everything in the kitchen and refrigerator. What complete kitchen I have.

There are people who will say that if you want a cake, go buy lar~! I'm stingy and my pocket will be greatly hurt because the other day, like for the first time in my life, I actually 'saw' the price of a cake. It's roughly around RM70 but but but the ingredients used for today's cake is less than RM10. It's done though... I have what I craved for but we will attack the cake tomorrow morning. 

Now I know why are there so many strawberries in the picture. Those strawberries are used to cover the pockmarks on the uneven surface of the cake. I'm okay without raspberries firstly because I don't have raspberries grown in my garden and secondly, I don't eat raspberries. 

PS. I will need to bake my own cake again after my precious leaves for her tertiary education. She got an offer letter to study as a physician but she's 99% not taking it up. No doctor in the house then... *not that I want her to be one if she doesn't want to be one* 

Lunch Combo 3: Monotone..

There's a cabbage in the vegetable compartment. I never realized that I have the refrigerator compartmentalized. Added some pork belly to make the braised cabbage good. A carrot gave the dish the sweetness from within.
My smoothest potato soup, blended into perfection. I still have a few strips of bacon left in the freezer. The soup was just great.
 Baked tilapia covered with breadcrumbs. Nice eaten with big slabs of mayo....
And lazy me made cheese and onion loaf. It's not supposed to be so. The bread imploded due to the extreme moistness. The bread machine should just prepare the dough and the whole thing was meant to go into the tin loaf with the cheddar cheese sprinkled on the top layer. Lazy me dumped everything straight into the bread make to churn out a perfect loaf. Yeah, the loaf was perfect except for the implosion.

Wednesday, 11 March 2015

Lunch Combo 2...

Baked chicken with onions and more onions to enhance the taste. Oyster sauce is a must while marinating or you can use whatever you wish to use. Bake at 220-degree Celsius for half an hour. *ting* It's done~!
There's creamy mushroom soup with tilapia fillet and some tiny minute prawns. That's all for today. Simple because I need to write essays...
Mi mama made egg tarts yesterday~! *woots*

Tuesday, 10 March 2015

What Happen to That Fish?

 Today I double-boiled ginseng chicken again so my precious got to eat it. She loves this kinda herbal soup and of course with her all time favourite chicken. Added extra two pieces of whole chicken legs. The taste was incredibly good.
I checked on my tofu fish in the steamer. Yes, the fish is tofu fish. The fish just removed its bones on its own. The texture of the fish was somewhat like that of a mud crab. I seriously don't know what happen has gone wrong with the fish. I definitely did not over-steam it. I kept to my 12 minutes of steaming a big fish.
Where has my pork floss gone to? I have a whole new packet of pork floss given by Mabel. But we searched the whole house and couldn't find the pork floss at all~! WHO TOOK MY PORK FLOSSSSS????

Monday, 9 March 2015

Lunch Combo 1...

It's Monday again. A rather difficult day to decide the menu of the week. Sunday was supposed to be the day which I planned for the weekly menu but I decided not to stress myself thinking of what to eat. Monday morning was quite short to plan so I had to decide fast. Today's rice was tomato rice. I adjusted the taste so that it would suit our taste buds.
Soup was carrot and orange soup. I added some siew pak choy, baby corns which were my favourite and some mushrooms. It was suppose to be empty. Just carrot blended and juice from an orange. I don't have an orange so I poured in some F&N carbonated orange.
Tried making meatloaf. It wasn't hard. Just the waiting time that took more than an hour.
Came out perfectly. The taste was also adjusted according to our taste buds. A simple yet delicious combination I should say. I'm knackered for now.

Saturday, 7 March 2015

Chap Goh Meh...

I practically don't celebrate anything properly. All of us also like that. We're the rebellious sort who go against the norm. Break all unwritten rules~! *woots* Mi mama was quite free on Thursday so she went to the garden and plucked some greens. That's screwpine leaves cut and waiting to be blended.
Then, the blue pea flowers were plucked directly from the garden as well, waiting to be squeezed in hot water.
Mi mama then made those natural-coloured balls using natural sources. The blue was from the blue pea flowers, the orange was from carrots, the yellow was from custard powder, the green was from the screwpine leaves and the white was just the glutinous rice flour.
The syrup was slowly boiled with some screwpine leaves and a chunk of ginger. I did not even help out because this is just not me to do all these.I only helped to eat. On the stove beside, I busied myself with something else.
The yam was cut and then deep-fried. After deep-frying, all were tossed into the wok to be braised for a while before the pak choy was added. I love this kinda cooking. Save me the energy and hearty to the stomach.
I braised the whole pork knuckle with some special sauce then added the radish in during the last quarter braising process. The result was awesome. I went to take a look outside and saw the neighbour's car parked at the porch. Called up the neighbours and asked them over by lunch.
The neighbour walked over with curry prawns. Ahhh.... delicious... so my neighbour also can cook. We didn't have enough rice so we asked the neighbour to bring over their own rice and gave some to us. Actually we had some leftover rice but it wasn't enough and I was not keen to cook extra rice to be kept in the refrigerator later for a few more days.
We had this after having our heavy lunch. The glutinous rice ball in syrup added with longan. Nice... really nice... I wonder what will hubby surprise me with tomorrow.