Thursday, July 31, 2014

Broccoli Chowder with Corn & Bacon

A bowl of warm hearty creamy soup with homemade garlic foccacia

This is a healthy creamy soup without added cream or butter. Bacon is added as garnish and helped to boost up the flavour of this creamy vegetable soup. Omit the bacon and replaced the chicken stock with vegetable stock, it becomes a great vegetarian dish to enjoy! 

  • 4 slices bacon, cut into 1" pieces
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1/4 cup plain flour
  • 800ml chicken stock
  • 1 russet potato, peeled and diced
  • 300gm broccoli florets
  • 400gm sweet corn kernels
  • 1 sprig fresh rosemary, chopped
  • 250ml fresh milk
  • salt & black pepper to taste

  1. Heat 1 tbsp olive oil in a deep pot, cook bacon over medium low heat, stirring occasionally, until crisp, 8-10mins. Remove bacon.
  2. Increase heat to medium, add onion and fry till soften about 6mins.
  3. Add flour, stirring constantly for 30 seconds. Add stock and potato, bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer for 10 mins until potato is tender. 
  4. Add broccoli, corn, rosemary and milk. Cook until broccoli is crisp-tender, 8-10mins.
  5. Season with salt & pepper. Ladle chowder into individual serving bowl and topped with bacon. Serve with crusty bread of your choice.

This post is linked to the event Little Thumbs Up (July 2014 Event: Potato) - organised by Zoe (Bake for Happy Kids) and Mui Mui (My Little Favourite DIY) and hosted by Jasline (Foodie Baker)

Monday, July 28, 2014

Stained Glass Jelly

This is another colourful rainbow that is yummylicous and candy to the eye! It looks complicated to make this but it does not! It is so much simple than the Rainbow Agar Agar I've did previously :D 

Preparing the coloured jelly (agar agar) first, the only natural colour extract here is the blue from dried bluepea flower! 

Stained Glass Jelly
  • 1 packet agar agar powder  (4 tsp)
  • 800ml water 
  • 120gm sugar (can increase up to 200gm sugar if you prefer sweeter)
  • blue - 2 tbsp dried bluepea flower
  • red - konnyaku cherry colour
  • green - pandan paste
  • orange - konnyaku peach colour

  1. Steep bluepea flower in 200ml water for 15 mins. Strain liquid and discard flowers. Combine liquid with 30gm sugar and 1 tsp agar agar powder and bring to boil for 2 mins. Pour mixture into a small container. Cool completely before chilling.
  2. Bring the balanced 600ml water to boil. Add in remaining 90gm sugar and 3 tsp agar agar powder and cook for 2 mins. Remove from heat.
  3. Divide mixture into 3 equal portions and add in red, green and orange colours respectively.
  4. Pour into individual containers and leave to set before chilling.
  5. Cut the stained glass jelly into small cubes and gently toss to distribute the coloured jelly evenly and set aside in fridge.

After the coloured jelly had set, cut them into small cubes and ready to proceed in preparing the condensed milk jelly. Keep them chilled while preparing the milk jelly.

Condensed Milk Jelly
  • 1 packet agar agar powder
  • 900ml water
  • 12 tbsp condensed milk
  • 2 pandan leaves, knotted

  1. Combine pandan leaves and water in a pot and bring to boil. Add in agar agar powder and cook  for 2 mins. 
  2. Add in condensed milk and stir evenly. Turn off heat. Discard pandan leaves.
  3. Ladle a scoop of milk mixture into a 7" square pan. After it is semi-set, gently sprinkle in a layer of stained glass jelly over, pour in some milk agar agar mixture. Layer in more stained glass jelly and milk mixture. Make sure the last layer of coloured jelly is well submerged without protruding out. 
  4. Set in room temperature before chilling. Chill completely before serving.

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Porridge by Soy Milk Maker

I've owned this soy milk maker for quite some time but so far only use it to make soy milk! After testing out recipe on porridge making using the machine, I'm hooked! Just need to soak the grains overnight and best if you have some homemade stock on hand, a bowl of thick and creamy porridge will be ready in just 15 mins! The machine will cook and grind the porridge till smooth, unlike if cooking over stove I've to constantly check on the pot to avoid the porridge from scorching.  Hehehe another great way to prepare simple and healthy meals when Mummy feeling too tired or lazy on some days! 

Mixed Grain Brown Rice Chicken Porridge

Mixed Grain Brown Rice Porridge
  • 60gm organic mixed grains
  • 40gm brown rice
  • 500ml homemade stock
  • 1/2 chicken, cut into chunks
  • 2 stalk spring onions
  • 1 tbsp ginger juice
  • 1/2 tbsp light soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp rice wine
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • spring onion and toasted sesame seeds for garnishing

  1. Rinse grains thoroughly and soak in water overnight.
  2. Marinate chicken with ginger juice, soy sauce, wine, salt, pepper & sesame oil for at least 30mins.
  3. Cut spring onions into sections and place onto a heatproof plate. Arrange the marinated chicken over including the liquid.
  4. Steam over preheated steamer for 30mins. Cool down till it is easy to handle. Remove the meat and shred finely, discarding the bones. Combine the broth and shredded meat together.
  5. To cook porridge : Add soaked grains and stock into the soy milk maker machine. Select the rice paste function and start button. Porridge will be ready in 15 mins.
  6. Open the lid and add in salt & pepper and stir evenly to mix. Scoop into serving bowl and serve with the shredded chicken. Garnish with spring onion and toasted sesame seeds.

Mixed Grains Pumpkin Porridge

Mixed Grains Pumpkin Porridge
  • 60gm mixed grains 
  • 40gm white rice
  • 1 cup pumpkin cubes
  • 600ml homemade fish stock
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • sesame oil

  1. Rinse and soak mixed grains overnight.
  2. Rinse white rice.
  3. Place all grains, pumpkin cubes and stock into the soy milk maker machine. Select the rice paste function and start button. Porridge will be ready in 15 mins.
  4. Open lid and add in salt & pepper. Stir evenly to mix.
  5. Drizzle with some sesame oil and serve.

Friday, July 25, 2014

Baked Kale Chips

Have you eaten kale before? This is a vegetable I don't normally serve on the table or eat regularly as it does not readily available in the usual supermarket or even the wet market near my home. Thanks to my mother-in-law as once in a while I will receive some fresh bunch of kale from her whenever she does get hold of some :D 

Kale is one of the most healthiest vegetables among all! They are rich in Vitamins A, C and K. It is believed that consuming this super power food on regular basis can helps to prevent cancer, lowered cholesterol, reduce the risk of heart disease. It can be eaten raw, stir-frying and bake into chips. Let me show you how to make this healthy vegetable into crispy chips!

Bunch of fresh kale

Remove the leaves from the stem, rinse a couple of time to remove dirt if any.  Spin the leaves dry in a salad spinner. The leaves have to be real dry to achieve crispiness. 

Toss the dry leaves with some olive oil and place in a single layer on a baking sheet.

Bake at 180 deg cel for 12 mins until crisp (keep an eye on it to prevent burning as different oven heat varies), toss with some seasoning e.g. salt & paprika and serve!

nom nom tasted so fantastic! 

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Shakoy (Twisted Sugar Doughnuts)

Shakoy or Lubid-Lubid is another popular snack from the Philippines. It is actually fried doughnuts but is shaped is in twisted style rather than the small ball or usual doughnut shaped we have locally :) The ingredient is rather simply, just plain flour, yeast, salt and water/milk, no egg and butter added into the bread dough. On first bite of this warm twisted sugar-coated doughnuts, suddenly Auntie Anne's pretzel flashed into my mind! hahaha maybe 'cos of its twisted shaped and I've actually added cinnamon powder in the sugar coating! Simple and addictive snack that I had two at one go not to mention my 2 'tam jiak' kids ^-^

Twisted doughnuts ready for proofing

deep-frying in hot oil

freshly fried twisted doughnuts

coated in cinnamon-sugar! be generous with the sugar!

Recipe source : pinoyrecipe
  • 180gm plain flour
  • 3/4 tbsp instant yeast
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 110-120ml milk
  • 1/4 sugar for coating (can add a tsp of cinnamon sugar if desired)

  1. Combine flour, yeast and salt in a mixing bowl.
  2. Make a well and pour in milk in the centre and mix into a dough. Knead the dough till smooth and elastic. Cover and proof it for an hour until double in bulk.
  3. After rising, punch down dough and knead lightly. Divide into 8 equal portions and rest for 10mins.
  4. Roll each piece into a long stick and twist. Place on a baking tray and cover. Proof for another 40mins.
  5. Heat some oil in a pan over medium heat, drop in shakoy by batches and fry until golden brown.
  6. Drain on paper towels and coat with sugar. Serve.

I am submitting this post to Asian Food Fest – Philippines hosted by The Sweet Spot

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Turon Na Saging (Banana Spring Rolls)

This sweet fried spring roll is such a delightful snack to enjoy! Encase with sugar-coated bananas and jackfruit, the flavour is so aromatic! hahaha but my kids do not know how to appreciate the unique flavour of the jackfruit, so in the end out of the 6 spring rolls, I polished up 4 of it, 2 by hubby :D

Local bananas and fresh jackfruit

Coating the fruits in brown sugar

Placing 3 slices of cut bananas and pieces of jackfruit onto spring roll wrapper and rolled up

Freshly fried banana spring rolls! Taste best when is hot....crispy skin and moreish fillings! 

  • 6 large pieces spring roll pastry
  • 3 saba bananas
  • 3 pieces jackfruit, sliced into strips
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • cornflour water (1 tsp cornflour + 2 tsp water)
  • toasted sesame seeds for coating (optional)

  1. Slice the banana length-wise into 3 slices. Coat the banana slices and jackfruit with brown sugar.
  2. In a large plate, lay the spring roll wrapper with one of the corners facing you.
  3. Place 2 slices of bananas and 3-4 slices of jackfruit in the middle of the wrapper.
  4. Roll up the wrap and fold in the sides. Smear some cornflour paste at the edge to seal the roll.
  5. Heat some oil in a medium saucepan, lower heat and deep fry the rolls till golden brown. Drain well and place on greaseproof paper to absorb excess oil.
  6. Rest for 5 mins before serving, the filling is hot! Serve with dollop of vanilla ice-cream if desired!

I am submitting this post to Asian Food Fest – Philippines hosted by The Sweet Spot

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Hakka Yong Tau Foo 客家酿豆腐

I always thought Hakka yong tau foo is a tedious dish to prepare 'cos of the preparation of the fish paste. So instead of making fish paste from scratch, I bought the ready made fish paste from the wet market yong tau foo stall! Traditional Hakka yong tau foo stuffing added with salted fish (梅香) but I omit that and replaced it with homemade fried sole fish powder. Hehehe... I'm (100% Teochew) not a Hakka in dialect, this dish may not taste as authentic but I'm satisfied with the short-cut result :) 

All the vegetables/tofu ready to be deep fried after filling in with fish paste stuffings. Oops I've actually forgotten to buy some tofu puffs :) 

Looks so yummylicious after frying! Can be served immediately or ....

with gravy! 

Filling :
  • 500gm fish paste (bought from wet market Yong Tau Foo stall)
  • 200gm minced pork
  • 8 water chestnut, peeled and diced
  • 2 spring onion, diced
  • 4 tbsp fried sole fish powder (deep fry dried sole fish and grind into powder)
  • 1 tsp five spice powder
  • 1 tsp oyster sauce
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • beaten egg : for sticking the filling
Varieties of vegetables for stuffing : 
  • brinjal, sliced diagonally and soak in salted water to prevent browning
  • firm tofu, halved
  • bitter gourd, slice into round and seeds removed
  • fresh shiitake mushroom
  • lady fingers, slit and seeds removed
  • chilli peppers
Sauce: qty can be doubled if desired
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 shallots, finely sliced
  • 1 tbsp oyster sauce
  • 1/2 tsp chicken stock powder
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 1 cup water
  • cornflour water for thickening

  1. Combine all filling ingredients evenly to form a sticky paste.  Taste test : As the store bought fish paste saltiness varies,  do not add too much seasoning at one go. The above seasoning I did  tasted just right for me. Heat a little oil in pan, add a small dollop of filling paste onto pan and fry till golden brown. Cool slightly and taste. If it is not salty enough, adjust seasoning by adding some salt or sugar to the raw paste. Proceed with the stuffing process.
  2. Spread a little beaten egg into vegetables/tofu cavities, follow by adequate amount of fish paste. Using your fingers, lightly smear some beaten egg around the edge of each stuffing. Neatly place the stuffed yong tau foo on a large plate.
  3. Heat some oil in wok. Place stuffed yong tau foo, fillings side down first, fry till golden brown on both sides. Drain on kitchen papers.
  4. After all stuffed ingredients are fried, with remaining 2 tbsp oil in wok, sauté garlic and shallots till fragrant.
  5. Add in hot water and seasoning and bring to boil. Add in some fried yong tau foo into the broth and simmer briefly for about 2 mins. Stir gently. Add in cornstarch water to thicken the gravy. Remove from heat and serve immediately. Alternately, omit the simmering process and serve the fried yong tau foo by drizzle the sauce over along with rice or noodles. 

Monday, July 21, 2014

Puto (Filipino Steamed Cakes)

Puto (poo-toh) is a famous traditional steamed rice cake in Filipino cuisine. It can be served as a breakfast with coffee/tea or a light snack. Rice flour or plain flour is used and top with cheese or salted egg yolk. Instead of using rice flour/plain flour, I've found recipe using Bisquick mix! Since I've a packet in my pantry therefore I tried this bisquick version :) Small and fluffy texture and it remains soft the next day! Cute and colourful little steamed cakes which is really appealing to the kids :) 

Ingredients (8 cupcakes)
  • 150gm bisquick
  • 80gm white sugar
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 slice cheddar cheese - divide into 8 portions
  • food colourings of your choice

  1. Whisk bisquick powder and sugar together.
  2. Beat eggs lightly. 
  3. Add eggs and milk into flour mixture. Stir well till no lumps are visible.
  4. Divide batter into 3 portions and add in your choice of food colourings.
  5. Fill lined muffin cups with 3/4 full of the batter.
  6. Steam over preheated steamer on medium heat for 15 mins. Turn off heat.
  7. Place cheddar cheese on top of each cakes. Cover the steamer and let the residue heat slightly melt the cheese topping.
  8. Serve warm or at room temperature. Can be stored in air-tight container till next day, microwave for 20 secs to warm up if desired. 

I am submitting this post to Asian Food Fest – Philippines hosted by The Sweet Spot

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Potato Cheese Pizza

This is a creative way I've discovered in a book of preparing pizza. Instead of using bread based, layers of golden panfried potatoes is used. I utilised whatever I have in the fridge, ham & shimeiji mushroom as the fillings instead of following the exact ingredients indicated in the recipe book :) You too can used any fillings you prefer :) 

Kid's Platter ^0^ 

Arrange cooked potatoes to form base, top with shredded cheese followed by fillings. Finished with another layer of potatoes and cheese, grilled till golden brown.

Crispy cheesy potato yummylicious!!

Recipe ref : "我要当食神" Wonder Chef
  • 2 Russet potatoes, thinly sliced
  • 1 small onion, thinly sliced
  • 3 slices honey ham, diced
  • 1 cup shimeiji mushroom
  • 1/2 cup pineapple cubes
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • shredded mozzeralla cheese

  1. Heat olive oil in a non-stick pan. Pan fry sliced potatoes, in batches, until golden brown on both sides. Remove from heat and set aside.
  2. Using the same pan, sauté onion until golden brown.
  3. Add in shimeiji mushroom and stir fry for 2 mins until soften. Add salt & pepper to taste.
  4. Toss in ham and stir evenly. Remove from heat.
  5. On a lined baking sheet, arrange a layer of cooked potatoes to form a base. Sprinkle some mozzarella over. Top with some mushroom and ham mixture and pineapple cubes over the cheese.
  6. Arrange another layer of cooked potatoes over the filling, press down lightly to flatten the pizza. Sprinkle some mozzarella over.
  7. Turn on top heat of the oven and grill for 10 mins till cheese melted and golden brown.

This post is linked to the event Little Thumbs Up (July 2014 Event: Potato) - organised by Zoe (Bake for Happy Kids) and Mui Mui (My Little Favourite DIY) and hosted by Jasline (Foodie Baker) 

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