Friday, December 14, 2007

Grilled Skate Wing/Stingray

Stingray or Skate was an inexpensive and largely ignored fish until relatively recently, when this excellent way of cooking it - slathered with Chili Sambal, wrapped in banana leaf and grilled over charcoal was discovered. I found that i had better result using the griddle than grilling over fire and whatever chili sambal you have on hand will do. There are so many types of premix or assam fish available and even Tom Yam paste can be a sub. for the chili sambal. Any white fish fillets would be a good stand in for the stingray.


1½-2 lb whole Stingray/skate wing, cleaned
1½ tsp palm sugar or dark brown sugar
juice of 1 lemon /lime
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 tbsp tamarind paste
1 cup warm water
a large piece of banana leaf [Substitute: aluminum foil]
2-4 toothpicks, soaked in water
3-4 fresh lime, cut into wedges
1 onion, sliced, for garnishA few sprig
s fresh coriander leaves [cilantro], for garnish
8 shallots, peeled
4 garlic, peeled
1 inch fresh ginger, peeled
2 stalks lemongrass, tender ends only
4-6 dried chilies, softened in hot water
1½ tsp
belacan, also spelt belachan or blacan [dried shrimp paste]
[Items in red are to be ground/blended]


Rub stingray with lemon/lime juice and salt, set aside for 10 mins.

In a small bowl, mix tamarind paste with warm water, strain, discard seeds, set aside.

Using blender/food processor, grind shallots, garlic, ginger, lemongrass, dried chilies , vegetable oil and belacan.

Cook the ground paste in the microwave on high until fragrant.

Add tamarind, sugar, salt to taste, cook further until sauce is slightly thickened, allow sauce to cool.

Soften banana leaf in hot water, dry well with a tea towel, lightly coat with vegetable oil .

Spoon and spread half the sauce on the banana leaf, lay the stingray fillets on top, spoon the rest of the sauce on the fish.

Fold the banana leaf into a packet, secure with toothpicks .

Grill on a hot charcoal bbq grill or indoor grill or stovetop grill pan, 10-15 mins, depending on the thickness of the fish, turn over ONCE
Garnish with sliced onions, coriander leaves and lime wedges

Serve hot with steamed rice or a fresh salad

Read More......

Oyster Omelette/Or Chien

The prefect marriage of just-cooked-to-perfection oysters, eggs, a somewhat crisp finish of the flour and starch mixture is what to expect from this dish.


8 - 10 large fresh oysters or 1/2 lb frozen oysters

2 tbsp tapioca starch

1 tbsp rice flour

8 tbsp water

1 tbsp oil

2 cloves garlic, finely chopped

3 whole eggs, beaten

1 tbsp light soya sauce

1 tbsp chinese wine

Ground white pepper

Sprigs of cilantro and chopped spring onions for garnishing


Wash the oysters and drain well.

Mix both tapioca starch and rice flour together with the water to ake a very thin batter.

Heat a large heavy frying pan until very hot and add oil.

Pour in the batter and cook for about 15 seconds until batter is half set before adding in the eggs.

When the eggs are almost set , make a hole in the center by pushing the egg and batter mixture to the side of the pan.

Pour in a little more oil and fry the garlic for a few seconds.

Mix, then season with soya sauce, chinese wine and pepper.

Add oysters and cook just long enough to heat through.

Garnish and serve immediately accompanied by Chili Sambal.

Chili Sambal

10 bird's eye chilies, chopped

20 red chillies, chopped

10 cloves garlic

1/2 cup oil

2 tbsp tomato paste

1 tbsp dried prawns, soaked and pound or blend

5 tbsp lime juice

1 tbsp sugar

Salt and pepper to taste

Pound and blend the chilies and garlic to obtain a fine paste using all the oil to keep the blades turning.

Pour blended ingredients into a large microwaveable bowl and add in tomato paste & dried prawns.

Cook on high for 5 minutes and continue to cook until the chili is fragrant.

Add in lime juice and sugar, then season with salt and pepper to taste.

Allow to cool.



Read More......

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Braised Chicken in Potato Mould

A typical chinese dish and it is only the final treatment of this dish that shows an innovative approach, adding potatoes and baking the chicken. The chicken can be cooked well in advance and the dish finished by preparing the potatoes and bakng the assembled dish in the oven.


1 whole chicken about 3 lbs, cut in pieces and deboned
Oil for deep frying
12 fresh shitake mushrooms, quartered(if using dried mushrooms - soak in warm water)
10 button mushrooms , halved
2 1/2 inches ginger, sliced
1 1/2 lb large potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced lengthwise
1 tbsp butter

2 tbsp light soya sauce
1 tbsp dark soya sauce
tbsp oyster sauce
1 egg, lightly beaten
salt and pepper to taste

1 tbsp oil
5 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 whole star anise
1 stick cinnamon about 1 1/2 inches long
1 tsp five-spice powder
3 tbsp oyster sauce
4 tbsp chinese wine
3 tbsp light soya sauce
1 tbsp dark soya sauce
1 tsp sesame oil
2 tsp sugar
2 cups chicken stock
2 tsp cornstarch, mixed with 2 tbsp water
Combine the marinade ingredients, mix with the chicken and set asde to arinate for 10 minutes. Pat the chicken dry and deep fry in very hot oil until half cooked.

To prepare the sauce, heat 1 tbsp oil in a saucepan and stir fry the garlic, star anise and cinnamon stick for 1 minute.

Add the deep-fried chicken, both types of mushrooms and ginger. Stir fry for 3 minutes, then add remaining sauce ingredients, except for the cornstarch mixture.

Simer for about 2 minutes and season to taste, then add the blended cornstarch. When the sauce thickens a little, remove from heat and set aside to cool.

Pan fry the thinly sliced potatoes with butter and oil until half cooked. Line an oven-prrof bowl with the half-cooked potatoes, making sure they overlap.

Fill with the cooked chicken mixture and cover with remaining potatoes.

Bake in a hot 400f oven for about 5 - 7 minutes.

Unmould and serve hot.

Read More......

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Danish Pastries

or vist

Thank you Beatrice for sharing such a lovely pastry and Cafe of the East for a wonderful write-up on danish pastries as usual and sharing step by step pictures.
It was so rewarding to make and i had to share my experience.


Danish Pastry
This refrigerator pastry needs to chill overnight
3/4 cup milk
1 1/4 tsp instant yeast
1 large egg, at room temperature
1/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2-1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
2 sticks (1/2 pound) cold unsalted butter

egg white for brushing on pastry before sealing
1 beatened egg yolk plus 1 tbsp water for glazing before baking

Powdered sugar icing glaze :

1/2 cup powdered sugar
2-3 tablespoons hot coffee or water)



In a large bowl, combine the milk, egg, sugar and yeast; stir to dissolve
Measure the flour into the work bowl of a food processor with the steel blade in place.
Add in the salt.
Slice the butter in half, then cut into 1/2 inch slices and add into the flour.
Then using pulse button of the food processor, cut the butter into the flour until it is in pea-sized pieces. This takes about 8 pulses.
Turn into a large bowl.
Pour the liquid mixture over and fold the two mixtures together just until the flour is moistened.
Cover and refrigerate 8 hours or overnight.
Lightly flour a work surface.
Scrape the bottom of bowl to loosen the dough from the bowl and dust lightly with flour the top of dough, then turn dough out onto floured work surface.
Dust the dough lightly with flour and shape the dough into a rough square with your hands.
Roll out to make a square about 16 inches on each side.(Roll from center of dough to the top, center to the bottom and then center to the sides - making a rectangle of 16 inches)
Fold the dough into thirds like a business letter.
Roll lightly to flatten the dough and fold it again into thirds, closing the ends (the dough will now be in a square).
Wrap the dough and chill for at least 30 minutes.
Roll again into a 16-inch square
Fold into thirds again, business letter style.
Roll out a second time to make a long, narrow rectangle and fold up again in thirds to make a square.
Cut the dough in half and chill again (to work on it later),
Roll out to make a square 20 inches x 10 inch.
Cut into eight 5-inch squares from one half.
Place a pastry square on the work surface.
Spoon a tablespoon of the filling onto the center. (apricot almond recipe is at bottom of page)
Brush the uncovered edges with egg white and lift the four corners of the pastry off the counter and seal in the center of the square. Squeeze the corners together to give them a little pinch and a twist to create a small topknot.
Place on a parchment-covered or silpat lined baking sheet.
Pastry can be shaped into Pin wheels/Spandauer. Techniques for folding pastry dough and shaping - See .
Preheat the oven to 400*F. (375*F. for convection oven).
Let the pastries rise, covered with a kitchen towel for 30 minutes until they look puffy (they will not double).
Brush the pastries with beaten egg white and sprinkle with pearl sugar(if available) or sliced almonds.
Bake for 8 to 10 minutes or until lightly golden.
Transfer onto a cooling rack and drizzle with powdered sugar icing glaze if desired.

Makes 16 pastries

Apricot-Almond Filling:
1 cup (packed) dried apricots
1 cup water
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon pure almond extract
1 cup toasted, chopped almonds

Stir the apricots, water and sugar together in a large microwave-safe bowl or a 4-quart glass measuring cup.
Put the bowl in a microwave oven and cook at full power for 10 minutes, stirring a few times, until apricots are soft and puffed and have absorbed almost all of the liquid.
Turn the mixture into the work bowl of a food processor with the steel blade in place and process until smooth.
Stir in the lemon juice, almond extract and the almonds.
Cool before using.
Can refrigerate up to 2 weeks .

Read More......

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Pumpkin Cookies

Happy Halloween


Sugar Cookies

• 2 cups sifted all-purpose flour
• 1 teaspoon baking powder
• 1/2 teaspoon salt
• 1 stick butter
• 1 cup sugar
• 1 egg
• 1/4 cup milk
• 1/2 teaspoon lemon extract


Day one:
• Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt into small bowl.
•In a larger bowl cream the butter and sugar together until smooth. Mix in the egg. Add the dry ingredients alternately with the milk and lemon extract and blend. Cover in wrap and chill overnight.

The next day:
Preheat oven to 400°F .
Cut off a piece of dough and roll out on a floured dry surface.

Add more flour to the dough until no sticking occurs.

Use your favorite cookie cutters than transfer shapes to a greased cookie sheet.
Bake for seven to ten minutes.
Let cookies cool before frosting with glaze icing
Glaze Icing

1 cup confectioners' sugar
1 tablespoon light corn syrup
2 tablespoons water
food coloring

Stir confectioners' sugar, corn syrup, and water together. Stir in food coloring if desired.
This glaze must be stirred each time you use it.
If it is not stirred before each use it will dry with a mottled look instead of a solid color.
Read More......

Monday, October 29, 2007

Ayam/Pork Buah Keluak

I have seen this special 'buah' which means 'fruit' in malay many a time as a cooking ingredient and have always wondered how it will taste as everyone who have tasted it raved about it. After 62 years, i finally had the opportunity to make this curry when my friend, Agnes, who had just came back from Singapore, gave me a dozen. I had to agree that this Buah Keluak or Indonesian Black Nuts undeniably, ambrosia among Nonya dishes is an acquired taste. The taste is indescribable and has to be eaten to be believed
To the uninitiated, buah keluak is a black nut from Indonesia about the size of a misshapen golf ball. The surface is ridged with a smooth nut 'mouth' across the flattest part. A slit is made in this mouth through which one scrapes out the contents which have been variously described as 'opium' and soft tar'. . Good nuts, when cooked, should be richly black and oily.

To prepare Buah Keluak or Indonesian Black Nuts, wash and scrub throughly until the thin film of dried mud they come in is completely gone. A proper and crucial step in cleaning is desired otherwise the gravy will be not be good eats. Soak in a large pot of water over-night or for at least six hours. An even quicker method is to boil the keluak for 15 minutes, which, I'm told by friends, works just as well. Most recipes will suggest that the contents of the nut be dugged out, to be mashed and mix with egg whites for binding. An addition of ground pork/chicken or prawns can also be added and then this mixture is stuffed back into the nut shells. However, really authentic , according to Agnes, Buah Keluak is cooked with the insides of the nuts and are served neat, in all their bitter glory. The resulting curry is literally black, with a slight orangey sheen of oil that you will either love or hate. To me, it was love, thank you Agnes for giving me the chance to experience the buah keluak's glory. I was also told that if not properly prepared for cooking, the nut is toxic and since all my friends who tasted my dish are still around and kicking, i am glad i did not kill anyone.


30 buah keluak(i had only a dozen that's why my gravy is not black
3 lbs chicken pieces
1 1/4 lb pork ribs - cut into bite size
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
12 ozs garam assam paste (recipe is at bottom of page)
3 ozs tamarind saked in 6 fl ozs water, squeeze an strain
1 - 11/2 tsp salt
32 fl oz water

Soak nuts in cold water for at least 6 hrs or overnight.
Brush nuts t remove mud and sandy particles.
Crack where nut is smooth.
Marinate chicken pieces with 1 tsp salt and pepper for 1/2 hr.
Heat wok with a tsp of oil and brown chicken pieces.
Remove chicken pieces and add in more oil. Add in the garam assam paste and saute until fragrant.
Add the tamarind juice and bring contents to the boil.
Add in the pork ribs and saute well. When contents come to a boil ,reduce the heat to medium, cook the pork ribs for 1/2 hr covered.
Add the nuts and the browned chicken pieces. Continue to cook for another 1/2 hr, stirring occasionally until chicken is cooked and pork ribs are fork tender.
Serve with white rice.

3 ozs sliced galangal
3 ozs sliced lemon grass
2 -3 ozs candlenut/buah keras
4 ozs shrimp paste/belacan
6 ozs fresh red chillies

12 ozs shallots
1/4 - 1/2 oz tumeric powder
1/4 oz chilly powder or 10 - 16 dried chillies, cut into small pieces, soaked in hot water until soft, drained(add this to A)
6 fl ozs cooking oil for frying

In the food processor, grind A into a fine paste, then add in the rest of the ingredients. Blend well.
If using the blender, put all the ingredients in including the oil and blend to very fine.
Pour blended ingredients into a microwable bowl and microwave on high for 5 minutes, stir and continue to cook on high until oil surfaces and paste is fragrant and almost dry.
Paste is ready for cooking but it has to be completely cooled before packing in airtight freezer containers.

Read More......

Rainbow Agar Agar

It's a refreshing dessert, a perfect finish to an Asian meal, especially after heavy stuff like curry. It's served cold, so it's great for summer too. It is easy to make and oh so impressive to serve.


The Transparent Layer:
2 tbsp agar agar powder
1200 ml water
200 gm castor sugar
Colorings - green is a must and i use pandan paste, it not only gives the green, it fragrants the whole jelly.

The Coconut Milk Layer:
2 tbsp agar agar powder
400 ml concentrated coconut milk
800 ml water
200 gm of castor sugar
1/2 tsp salt

1. Boil above ingredients for the transparent layer except colourings till dissolved. Sieve mixture and return to pot. Leave it on the stove on the lowest heat or doubleboil to keep the mixture warm until the coconut layer is ready for assembling.
2. Boil the agar agar, sugar and water for the coconut layer till dissolved, then add in coconut milk and salt. Sieve mixture and return to pot. Leave it on very low heat .
1. Measure about 250 ml of transparent agar agar and colour it in the colour you like. Leave it to harden slightly(not too hard if not the jelly will not stick together. If too hard, just use a fork to lightly scratch the surface before adding the next layer.)
2. The second layer will be 250 ml of the coconut milk agar agar. Leave to harden slightly
Do the same alternating between the transparent layer and the coconut milk layer until all the agar agar have been used up.
3. Leave the whole jelly to cool down before refrigerating it for at least a few hours.
Read More......

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Rempah Udang

This is a Straits-born Chinese Wedding Speciality and it is a dumpling filled with spicy prawns. Another version is called Pulut Panggang of which the filling is different, dried prawns are used instead of fresh prawns. I was asked by a friend to translate a recipe in malay and it is called Pulut Lepa. I have not heard of this one before and i guessed the name changed cos this filling has fish meat. I have added a picture of the sushi mould used to form the cylindrical shape.


1 1/2 lb glutinious rice - wash and soak overnight
350 ml canned coconut milk(do not shake the can and use only the cream)
1 tbsp sugar
1 1/2 tsp salt
8 pieces pandan leaves tied into a knot


1 lb prawns - peel and chop fine
8 ozs grated coconut
2 tsp coriander powder
8 shallots
1 lemon grass, slice very thinly
3 cloves garlic
pinch of kencur powder
1/2 tsp salt


banana leaves cut into 6" x 3" wash, wipe dry and greased.
Sushi mould


Place glutinious rice in a muslin lined steamer with the pandan leaves. Make steam holes with the handle of wooden spoon and steam over rapidly boiling water for 20 minutes.

Remove glutinius rice into a saucepan. Pour in the coconut milk, salt and sugar and mix well. Cover saucepan and let sit for 5 minutes.

Return to steamer and steam for another 15 minutes until cooked. Cover to keep warm until ready to assemble.

To cook the filling:

Grind shallots, lemon grass, garlic to a fine paste, then add in the coriander powder and kencur.

Fry grated coconut in a very dry pan until brown and frangrant. Do not over-fry until oil is extracted. Put aside.

Heat oil and fry the ground ingredients until fragrant. Add the chopped prawns and salt. Stir well until ingredients become dry. Finally add in the coconut.

To assemble:

Using the sushi mould, press in glutinious rice making a trench for the filling. Put a spoonful of filling in the trench and top with more glutinious rice and press down to form into a cylindrical dumpling.

Remove from mould into a piece of greased banana leave. Roll up the banana leave and fasten both ends with stapler pins. Repeat this process until all rice and filling are used up.

Heat 1 tsp oil in a nonstick pan and pan fry the dumplings until heated through.

Read More......

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Yeong Tofu

Tofu/taufoo, however you call it or in whatever forms is my favorite staple which needs no introduction but just for reminiscing, i miss the tofu from Malaysia, - the 'sang far', 'sui tofu' and 'tau khon/taukuah'.

To 'yeong' in cantonese which means to stuff, Besides all forms of tofu or soy products, any vegetables can be stuffed. Leafy vegetables like 'kangkong' or 'choy sum' can be blanched and twirled up and then a patch of fish paste is added. Blanched Long Beans made into a small bundle is one of the best. The other popular candidates for stuffing are 'red and green peppers', 'fu chuk', okra, eggplant and all types tofus of course. I personally like to stuff 'shitake mushrooms' and cabbage.

The stuffing filling of just fish paste is the most common but the 'hakka' version of adding ground pork and salted fish is very flavorful especially with 'sang far' tofu. In the absence of 'sang far', the silken tofu is cut into squares and using a melon baller, scoop a hole to hold the filling and then steam or alternatively, cut the tofu into triangles and stuff the fish paste on the pointed side of triangle instead of the straight side which is too tricky.

The paste can be made into balls which are then cooked in simmering water/stock or made into a log/disk and pan-fried.

The stuffed tofus or vegetables are pan-fried or deep-fried and is served as is with chilly sauce for dipping. They can be served with a light thin sauce made with 'mein see/tau cheong' or in soups. i especially like the soup that is made with soya beans. At this stage, they can be kept in the freezer but not for the stuffed white silken tofu. They are the best accompaniment for noodles.

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting
Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting


1-1½ lb Spanish Mackerel fillet - using a spoon, remove the flesh from the skin

1/4 tsp white pepper
1/2 tsp sesame oil
1 tsp light soya sauce
1/2 tsp sugar
1 egg white
a pinch of msg(optional)

2 tbsp cornstarch
1 tsp salt mixed with 4 tbsp water


Put the fish fillet in the food processor and pulse until the fish is finely chopped up. The number of pulses depend on the freshness of the fish meat.
Remove from food processor and put minced fish meat in the cake mixer mixing bowl.
Add in the seasonings A and using the paddle, mix to combine
Add in B and turn on the highest speed to create 'kau' , then the paste will have the good crunchy texture
The paste is ready to 'yeong'/stuff whatever.
For Hakka version -
Add to fish paste
1/2 lb of ground pork with considerable amount of pork fat and make sure that it is not ground too fine. The best would be to chop pork with the cleaver
Salted fish - preferably 'mui heong'
To make soup:
Fish bones and skin(after the flesh has been removed for the fish paste)
A handful of ikan bilis
1 cup of soya beans - wash and soak for 2 hours, drain
3 - 4 slices of ginger
4 cups water
salt and pepper to taste
oil for frying the fish bones and skin
Heat oil and pan fry the fish bones and skin or the ikan bilis until very crispy
Remove and fill a muslin/cheesecloth bag with the fried fish bones and skin/ikan bilis, then put in the pressure cooker together with the soya beans, ginger and water
Close the pressure cooker and cook on high for 1/2 hour
Release pressure and open the lid Remove the muslin/cheesecloth bag
The soup is then ready for the yeong tofu/vegetables/etc
Add salt and pepper to taste.(Might not have to add so much salt as the goodies might be salty enough)

Read More......

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Chocolate Mooncakes

When my friend Lena told me that her family loved these chocolate mooncake, i had to get the recipe from her and with some tweaking, got to make some of these cuties. I used the moulds that are meant for hard boiled eggs and they turned out so well.

100 ml water
70 gm brown sugar
10 gm cocoa powder
40 gm unsweetened dark chocolate
20 gm shortening
1/2 tsp chocolate emulco
60 gm koh fun
2 tbsp wheat starch(tung mein fun) add 2 tbsp of hot boiling water
2 tbsp of steamed cake flour
300 gm lotus /red bean/mung bean paste
60 gm melted unsweetened dark chocolate
1/2 tsp chocolate emulco

Put 100 ml water and 70 gm brown sugar in a bowl and microwave for 1 minute. Stir to dissolve sugar.
Pour a little at a time to the cocoa powder and mex well.
Put chocolate and shortening in a bowl. microwave for 1 minute, stir and if chocolate is not totalling melted, microwave another 30 seconds.
Using a bigger mixing bowl, mix the wheat starch with the hot boiling water and stir well. Add iun the koh fun and steamed flour. Mix to combine.
Add in the sugar/cocoa powder mixture and mix.
Add in the melted chocolate and chocolate emulco. Knead well until dough does not stick to the fingers.
Leave covered while you mix the filling.
Mix all the ingredients for the filling until well combine.
To make the mooncakes.
To fit the hard boiled moulds - weigh 20 gm filling and 15 gm chocolate skin.
Read More......

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Twisted Fried Pretzels

This must be one of the oldest chinese snacks that i know of. It used to be sold as an everyday snack but now i think they only appear on the supermarket shelves during the chinese new year. It is not diffiult to make and the ingredients are few but it is tedious as it has to be twisted one at a time.


600 gm all purpose flour
4 Tbsp rice flour
100 gm cooking oil
280 ml water
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp Instant yeast
1 tsp double action baking powder
1/4 cup sesame seeds
Sugar syrup(optional):
1 cup coarse sugar
160 ml water
2 - 3 tbsps all purpose flour
Mix all the ingredients for the plaits together and rest for 20 mins
Cut dough into tiny pieces and using the pasta machine, roll the dough out flat at the thickest (no. 7) and repeat with the rest of the dough pieces.
Change to the fetucinne size cutter and cut rolled dough. Cut one strip to measure 10 inches or smaller and use it as a guide for the other strips.
To twist - Roll a strip to a round rope shape and press down one end , using the other hand, push rope forward so that it gets twisted, as twisted as possible. Let the 2 ends meet and then fold in half again. pinch the ends or thread one end into the loop of the other. If it has been twisted well, it will form a plait by itself.
Deep fry the twisted plaits in hot oil until golden brown.
If you like it to be sugar coated, cook the sugar and water till thick, almost crystalise and then add in the fried plaits, sieve flour onto the plaits and fry till sugar crystalised
Dish up, leave to cool.

Read More......

Mooncakes - Disney Characters

These mooncakes are made with the Disney Character Cookie cutters. They are the cutest and i am expecting ooh and aahs when the children see them. Even Alexander recognized Pooh and said 'ccol'


Refer to Mooncakes and Mooncake - Ping Pei

Read More......

Friday, September 14, 2007

Prawn Noodle Delimas

This summer has been so busy with friends dropping by and i was in delimma as to what to dish out. Luckily, Ray of came to the rescue with several DELIMAS products for me to review and prawn noodle was one of them. I love to make prawn noodles from scratch but this premixed made my day - i only had to make the hokkien noodles and viola - a delicious meal was served.

A packet of Delimas prawn noodle
Hokkien Noodles
Cooked Prawns
Cooked Pork
Blanched Kangkong
Blanched Beansprouts
Fried shallots

Follow the instructions on the back of the packet of Delimas Prawn Noodle to make the soup.

Read More......

Friday, September 07, 2007

Mooncakes - Ping Pei

These Ping Pei Mooncakes are easier to make and much more presentable for the lovely sweet pastel colors. It should be served chilled.

The recipe for the skin is here : and the recipe for the fillings are the same as in the traditional mooncakes.
Read More......


Mooncake festival is around the corner and it needs no introduction. My Mooncake making is possible due to the fact that i have a very thoughful and generous friend, who is also 'my sifu' in cooking matters. TT, took a trip to Vietnam and bought mooncake moulds from there and graciously send me some of those lovely moulds, of which these lovely mooncakes turned out. Thank you, TT for making it possible. I hope i did not let you down. My mooncake making will not be possible if i did not have this recipe which was shared by Wendy. Wendy, wherever you are, thank you so much for sharing.

Preparation of Golden Syrup:

600 gm granulated sugar
1/2 cup water
1 tbsp lime/lemon juice or citric acid
70 ml (2 ozs) water

Boil the sugar with 1/2 cup of water, lime/lemon juice till golden brown over a slow fire. Then add in 70 ml(2 ozs) water before turning off the fire

Preparation of Pastry Skin:
350 gm - 500 gm all purpose bleached flour
230 gm golden syrup
110 ml oil
1 tbsp potassium carbonate and sodium bicarbonate/kan sui
Mix golden syrup, oil and kan sui together and let it sit for at least 1 hour.
Add in 350 gm flour and mix into a dough. Knead until dough does not stick and is pliable (getting the correct consistency is important - add more flour if the syrup if the dough is too hard and not binding or adjust with more flour if the dough is too runny. )
Rest dough for another 30 minutes before using

Preparation of Lotus Paste:

600 gm lotus seeds with skin and in halves
1 tbsp pottassium carbonate & sodium bicarbonate solution(kan sui)
500 gm sugar
2 cups of peanut oil
60 gm (2 ozs) toasted melon seeds(kua yan)
60 gm (2 ozs) toasted kernel of olive seeds(lam yan)
2 ozs maltose
2 heap dessert spoon wheat starch(tung mein fun) - add this to 1/2 cup of oil from the 2 cups

Boil 600 gm of lotus seeds with 1 tbsp pottassium carbonate & sodium bicarbonate solution(kan sui) for 10 minutes.(Test to see if skins can be removed easily). Cool the lotus seeds and remove the skins and cores.
Using the pressure cooker, steam the lotus seeds for 15 - 20 minutes.
Put the lotus seeds in the food processor and blend till smooth and pour into a large microwable bowl.
Put 1 cup of oil and 150 gm of sugar in a cooking pan and cook till sugar is golden brown. (This must be under a low fire otherwise the sugar will get burnt) When the sugar is golden brown, put in together with the blended lotus seeds and the rest of the sugar. Also add the maltose and another 1/2 cup of oil.

Cook on high for 10 minutes, stir, and continue cooking at 3 - 5 minutes, stir when time is up. Cook until paste is nearly done, then add in the remaining 1/2 cup of oil which has the wheat starch. Continue to cook until done (The lotus paste is ready when it is thick and does not stick when tested).Add in the melon seeds and kernels of olive seeds and let it cool before using.

Preparation of Red bean Paste:

600 gm red beans
700 gm sugar
2 cups peanut oil 
90 gm (3 ozs) plain flour - add this to 1 cup of oil from the 2 cups
2 tbsp rose jam/sugar (optional)

Put red beans and enough of water to cover the beans in the pressure cooker, cook uncovered for 5 minutes and then drain.

Put back the drained beans and enough of water in the pressure cooker. Cover and cook on highest pressure for 30 minutes. Remove cover when there is no more pressure.
Take a container and fill 3/4 of it with water. Place some cooked red beans in a sieve and place the sieve at the water surface of the container. Knead and sift the red beans. The food of the red beans will separate from the bean coats/shells and sink to the bottom of the container. Discard the bean coats and continue this process till all the red beans have been mashed and sifted.
Place this watery bean food in a muslin cloth sack or tea cloth and squeese out the water. Continue this process till the water from all bean food has been squeezed out.
Put drained bean food, 1 cup oil, sugar in a large microwable bowl and microwave on high for 10 minutes, stir and continue to cook on high 5 minutes at a time until nearly done. Add in the cup of oil that has the plain flour added in and continue to cook until ready. (time for cooking differs depending on how dry the bean food has been drained)
Add in the rose jam if using.
To assemble the mooncake:
Divide mooncake pastry to 35 -40g (big moulds)and 15g (small mooncake moulds). Knead each portion for a while and roll into a ball .
Divide mooncake paste to 120g (for big mooncake with yolks) and 30g (small mooncake), 140g (big mooncakes without yolks). Knead each portion a little and form each into a ball .

Lightly flour (using cake flour) your hands. Flatten a pastry dough to a 2.5-inch disk/circle. Press to make the edges thinner than the central part and place a ball of paste. Start pushing the paste against the dough . As you push the paste, the dough will start to enlarge. Press the centre of the paste lightly and place an egg yolk there(salted egg yolks should be cooked by addng in a tbsp of wine and steamed). Continue to wrap up the mooncake until the pastry fully cover the filling. Roll into a ball.

Lightly flour the mooncake. Place mooncake, seam side up, in mould. Flatten mooncake to conform to shape of mould . If using a wooden mould, bang upper, lower, left and right sides of mould to dislodge the mooncake. For plastic moulds, just bang slightly the sides of the mould and the mooncake will dislodge with ease.
Place cake on to a lined baking sheet (i use silpat/silicone baking liner). Repeat to shape remaining mooncakes.
Put the mooncakes in the middle of oven and turn on the broiler/grill/upper heat and broil for 5 minutes or until evenly brown. Remove mooncakes from oven and set aside for 10 minutes.
Remove from oven and switch setting to oven 375 f convection.

In the meantime, prepare egg glaze.
Beat an egg slightly. Add 1 tsp oil and 1 tbsp water. Strain the egg mixture.

Brush with egg glaze . Stand for further 5 minutes before returning mooncakes to oven.
Bake for another 10-15 minutes.
Remove from oven and let is cool in the baking sheet before transfering to baking rack for further cooling.

Store for 2-3 days. Mooncakes will get set and the pastry skin will be shinny and soft and ready for serving.
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Monday, September 03, 2007

Alexander's 2nd Birthday

Alexander is already two, the horrible or the terror two but no matter how terrible, you just can't get angry with his mischievious endeavors. He gives you the most attractive smile and says 'sorry' in the cutest way. At such a young age, he knows what he wants. He is into Lighting Mcqueen, Thomas the Tank Engine, Go Diego Go and Bob the Builder - all the boy's stuff. So, it was easy to choose the design for his birthday cake. Lighting Mcqueen is made with pastillage and pretty easy to do and can be done, weeks before the party. The cake is the same as all Renee's birthday Cakes but since it is a cake for a boy, i changed the fruit to blueberry instead of strawberry. Recipe for the cake and buttercream is here



1/2 tbsp gelatin
2 tbsp water
2 cups powdered sugar (lightly spooned into cup)
1/4 cup cornstarch (lightly spooned into cup)
pinch of cream of tartar (optional)

Food Colorings


Sprinkle the gelatin over water in a small heatproof glass cup and allow to sit for 5 minutes.
Set in a small pan of simmering water and stir until the gelatin is dissolved. (This can be done in a few seconds in a microwave on high power). Remove from heat.

Combine the sugar, cornstarch and optional cream or tartar in a large bowl and make a well in the center. Add the gelatin mixture and stir with a wooden spoon until blended. Mix with lightly greased hands and knead vigorously in the bowl until the sugar is incorporated.

Turn onto a smooth, lightly greased surface such as Formica or marble and knead until smooth and satiny. If the pastillage seems very dry, add several drops of water and knead well. If it seems too sticky, knead in more powdered sugar. The pastillage will resemble a smooth, well-shaped stone. When dropped, it should not spread.

Pastillage is easier to work with if it has rested for at least 1 hour. It dries very quickly, so it is important to cover to prevent drying. Wrap in a cloth rubbed with a bit of white shortening, then tightly in plastic wrap, and place it in an airtight container.

When ready to roll out, spray the work surface and rolling pin with nonstick vegetable oil spray. Pastillage can be rolled as thin as 1/16-inch. It dries and holds it shape very quickly.

If stored Pastillage seems very stiff, a few seconds in the microwave make it pliable.
To make Lightning Mcqueen:
Get a picture of Lightning Mcqueen and enlarge to a size that will fitt on the cake.
Cut out the outline of the different colors on the picture and use these cut outs as a template.
Color the pastillage accordingly and roll it to flat, big enough to fit the templates.
When all the templates are complete, assemble them together as in a zig zaw puzzle.
Leave to dry.
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Friday, August 17, 2007

Pulut Tekan/Lam Fah Koh

I think that what i wanted to say haved been so nicely said and presented by Seadragon This is one of the classics of nyonya kuih and how organic can it be when the color blue is obtained from the flower 'Bunga Telang' which gives the special blue to marble the compressed rice. These flowers are hard to come by and they are not so treasured when you are in Malaysia , but here, it is different, friends who have treasured ingredients like this, share and i have the opportunity to get some from my dear friend, Sandra Ho, whose mom is in Malacca and dried some for her. Thanks to Sandra's mom.

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500 gm glutinious rice, wash and soak for 4 hours, then drain well

350 ml coconut cream

1 tbsp sugar

1 tsp salt

1/2 tsp dried bunga telang - reconstitute with 1/4 cup of boiling water)

a large piece of banana leave


Put all the ingredients int0 a steaming tray and steam on high heat until cooked (about 45 minutes)

Remove 1/3 of the cooked glutinious rice into a mixing bowl, add a little of the blue bunga telang extract and mix well to obtain a blue glutinious rice.

Add in the remaining 2/3 cooked glutinious rice and mix lightly to obtain a marble effect.

Using a piece of banana leave, press glutinious rice into a 7 inch square cake pan which has been lined with banana leaves. Cut a piece of 7 inch square thick cardboard and cover it with heavy duty aluminium foil. Use this as a lid and press it down on top of the pressed glutinious rice. Use something heavy (i use a 6 inch saucepan filled with water) on top to weigh down cake until cool and firm.

Cut into pieces and serve with KAYA(recipe is

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Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Instant Noodles

Instant Noodles enjoy a huge popularity in every asian homes around the world. The range of flavors are limitless and so too are their patrons. Students, overseas or in their homeland, busy or not so busy housewives, asian tourists, etc, all find great enjoyment in them.

And me, I am a confessed Instant Noodle addict and the addiction progresses with new flavors .I have to thank Ray of who sent me these 3 kinds to sample and i must say, i am hooked. They are Uncle Ho Bak Kut Teh Noodles, Ina Yee Mee and Ina Pan Noodles and thanks to him again, malaysians here in the States do not have to drool over these comforts from home but can purchase them online.

There is need for suggestion as to how to cook or eat them, Instant speaks for itself, eat them as is, but by all means add vegetables , meat, fish balls, etc to make the meal more substantial if it is being served for lunch or dinner.

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a packet of instant noodle


Fill a big soup bowl 3/4 full of cold water.

Put in the noodle and flavors

Microwave on high 3 - 4 minutes, covered with a splatter.(time differs with the wattage of your microwave)

Using oven mittens, remove the splatter then the bowl of cooked noodles.


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Monday, July 16, 2007

Ma Lai Koh

It is summer and there are so much to do, leaving me no time to do much posting although i did cook and still tweaking recipes. When a friend asked me about 'ma lai koh' - the old kind with lots of holes, i had to ponder for a very long period to try and recall how this cake should be. The only memory of it is that it was very fragrant of the lard as soon as the steamer lid was opened and the color of the cake was light brown. Thanks to my friend and sifu TT who posted the original recipe, i have managed to tweak and come up with the cake i like.

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90 g all purpose flour
1/4 tsp yeast
1/4 tsp sugar
80 ml water

Cake :

80 gm brown sugar
1 1/2 tbsp condensed milk
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla essence
50 gm melted butter
1/4 tsp salt
28 gm cake flour
1 tbsp custard powder
1 tbsp milk powder
1/4 tsp vinegar
1/8 tsp pottassium carbonate & sodium bicarbonate solution(kan sui)
1/2 tsp double action baking powder



Mix all the ingredients and leave for 2 to 4 hours(it can be left for longer but it made the cake too yeasty.)


Bring water in steamer to high boil.

Line a perforated 8 inch cake pan with greaseproof paper and put in steamer to preheat.

Add the brown sugar and condensed milk to the starter and using your hand, mix and blend in until well combined.

Using a whisk, add in eggs and vanilla, whisk well.

Add in melted butter and salt. When well mixed add cake flour, custard and milk powder.

Lastly add in vinegar, potassium carbonate & sodium bicarbonate solution and double action baking powder. Mix well and pass batter through the sieve.

Pour into preheated prepared cake pan and steam for 30 minutes.

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Tuesday, June 12, 2007

French Toast

A fun traditional breakfast entree , French Toast makes an easy and welcome dinner also, especially for kids. Top the toast with yogurt, jam and powdered sugar and serve along with big glass of orange juice will leave you smiling for the rest of the day.

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1/3 cup Whole milk
2 Large eggs
1 tbsp Sugar
1/2 tsp Vanilla
1/4 tsp Salt
3 slices White or egg bread
1 tbsp Butter


In a shallow bowl, whisk together milk, eggs, sugar, vanilla and salt.

Melt butter in large frying pan on medium heat.

Dip bread in egg mix, turning to coat each side.

Cook bread in frying pan until underside is golden, then turn and cook until reverse is golden.

Serve immediately.


Use the sandwich toaster then the butter can be omitted.


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Rice Crispies Dora and Spongebob

These were made for Renee's birthday party and these rice crispies were a real treat. I made Dora for the girls and Sponge Bob for the boys.

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3 tablespoons butter, melted
1 teaspoon vanilla
4 cups miniature marshmallows or 40 large
6 cups rice crispies


In a medium saucepan, combine butter, vanilla, and marshmallows.

Melt over medium heat while stirring with a wooden spoon.

Remove from heat, and mix in rice crispies


Put butter, vanilla and marshmallows and microwave on high for 2 minutes,

Spoon and press into Dora and Sponge Bob moulds.

Cool and remove from moulds and ice with melted chocolate and buttercream. M & Ms, sliced almond and tiny marshmellows were also used to decorate Sponge Bob

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