Monday, December 30, 2013

Gon chow ngau ho / Cantonese-style fried noodles / Beef chow fun or just call it delicious !

Instead of ending the year with sweet note , I'll leave you with savoury note lol

If you've been in Hongkong , you've probably eaten this already .

Of course , this version is not really what you call authentic gon chow ngau ho / beef chow fun / Cantonese-style fried noodles since I usually add water whenever I cook it .

Well , since it's my own version , I can add anything whatever I want , right ? 

This is my 3rd post of this noodle dish . I've tried cooking it without water the second time but I like it much better with some water .   

I mean , who wants an oily version of it , which by the way , is what you usually get when you order this noodle dish at some Chinese resto here . 

Not all , mind , some makes great gon chow ngau ho , if you're lucky enough to find it !

Now , making it at home is easy enough , as long as you won't stir it vigorously .

Fresh flat rice noodles are quiet soft and will break easily , when you fry it , each strand will stick to each other like crazy . Since I haven't tried cooking chow fun by using the wok hei method , I'm using induction cooker , so I cooked it using a non-stick pan instead . The only way to separate each noodle strands is to cook it on high heat and of course , more oil . Adding water is the lesser of two evils .

I let the photos do the talking ......

So , how's your New Year's preparation going so far ? 

Serves 4 ( Yeah , right , 2 more likely ! )

1 pound ( about 500-550 grams ) fresh flat rice noodles 
200 grams thinly-sliced beef ( the one you use for Chinese hot pot ) or sirloin , sliced thinly
1 clove garlic , minced
1 small onion , cut into 1/4-inch thick
50 grams garlic chives , cut into 2-inches long or spring onion
150 grams mung bean sprouts 
2 teaspoons homemade or store-bought chili garlic sauce plus extra , if prefer

spring onion , for garnish

For the sauce : 

1/2 cup beef broth or water 
1 1/2 tablespoons dark soy sauce
1 tablespoon light soy sauce
1 teaspoon raw sugar or regular sugar

* Marinate beef slices with 1/2 teaspoon light soy sauce , a dash of ground white pepper , a dash of sesame oil and 1/2 teaspoon of tapioca or cornstarch , set aside . Separate each strands of noodles . Combine and mix ingredients for the sauce . 

* In a large non-stick pan , over medium high-heat , pour about 1 tablespoon of oil , when oil is hot , add in garlic . Fry until lightly-browned , then add in the beef slices , cook for about a minute , transfer to a plate . In the same pan , add in the onion , fry for 2 minutes then add in the chives and cook for about a minute , transfer to the plate with the beef . Add in the noodles and cook , stirring and tossing gently from time to time to prevent sticking from the bottom , for 5 minutes . Add in the beef , onion/chives mixture and the mung bean sprouts , stir gently for about 15 seconds then add in the sauce . Stir and toss for about 2-3 minutes or until sauce is absorbed . Add in the chili garlic sauce , give it a good stir , dish up . Serve hot with extra chili sauce .

Monday, December 23, 2013

Homemade hot chocolate mix / Last-minute Christmas gift idea

So that I could have something festive (?) to post  , I hastily made this chocolate mix late last night .

Of course , I could bake cookies and I did 2 days ago but it fell short of expectation .

Okay , maybe I expected too much , dreaming that the buttery spritz cookies that I'm making will taste just like the ones at Jenny Bakery .

Yeah , right ! 

If you've tasted their cookies , you know what I'm talking about .

It's just out of this world , that is , if you love butter cookies .

Now , this chocolate mix surpasses my expectations ! 

But then , I've only got the Carnation instant cocoa mix to compare it with lol

Goodbye Carnation ! 

This homemade chocolate mix is so easy to make and I'm sure the ingredients can be found in your pantry .

Make this and you'll never go back to store-bought chocolate mix again ! 

Recipe adapted from King Arthur

Makes 3 cups mix

1 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/4 cups Guittard 63 % bittersweet chocolate chips
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons Callebaut milk chocolate chips
1/2 cup Valrhona dutch-processed cocoa
pinch of salt , optional 

marshmallows to serve 

* In a food processor . combine sugar and vanilla and pulse for 5 to 6 seconds or until well combined .

* Add in the chocolate chips to the sugar mixture , pulse in 10 seconds interval until finely ground and well combined . 

* Add in the cocoa powder and salt if using , pulse until everything is well-mixed . 

To make a cup ( 250 ml ) of hot chocolate :

* For each cup , combine 1/4 cup / 4 tablespoons with 250 ml of hot milk or 150 ml hot water plus 100 ml hot milk . Stir until all the chocolate is melted . Top with marshmallows or whipped cream .

* Store cocoa mix in an airtight container for 6 to 9 months .

                                         The so-so taro and strawberry spritz cookies 

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Thai coconut chicken noodle soup

If I have to put up a noodle shop , this noodle soup would be my specialty .

That is after , I found another soup recipe that's worth cooking , again and again .

'twas the best chicken noodle soup outside Thailand ! 

Well , according to me , that is lol 

The first time I've made this was without noodles , I had to give up photographing a bowl of it since the chicken pieces keeps dropping down at the bottom of the bowl . Note that the recipe calls for a measly 225 grams of chicken and I just can't fathom why I had to use the deepest soup bowl ugh ! Since , there's always time to make it again , the wonderful aroma  of the soup keeps getting in the way ....

This time the slices of chicken and I also used some chicken wings , stays prettily on top , so it was easy to photograph it . For sure adding the noodles makes a much more substantial fare !

Hopefully , you can find the ingredients at your local Asian store , the aroma of the soup base while you're boiling it is such a delight and it's worth searching for galangal , lemongrass and lime leaves to make this .

Recipe adapted from Ken Hom's Foolproof Thai Cooking

I've made half of the recipe with some modification

2 fresh lemongrass
1.5 liters chicken stock
2 tablespoons coarsely chopped galangal or ginger
6 Kaffir lime leaves or 2 tablespoons coarsely chopped lime zest
6 tablespoons finely sliced shallots 4 shallots
225 grams skinless , boneless chicken thigh 150 grams chicken thigh + 4 pieces mid-joint wings
3 tablespoons fish sauce 2 tablespoons
4 tablespoon lime juice
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tin /400 ml coconut milk
1 teaspoon homemade chili-garlic sauce

200 grams dried rice stick noodles
a handful of fresh Thai basil to garnish coriander leaves
lime slices to serve

* Peel off the tough outer layers of the lemongrass , leaving the tender white center , cut into 3-inch pieces and crush with the flat of a knife .

* Pour stock in a saucepan , add in the lemongrass, galangal ,lime leaves and 1/2 of the shallots . Bring to a boil keep an eye on it or it'll boil over , then reduce the heat , cover and simmer gently for an hour . Strain the mixture and discard solids . Return the stock to the pan .

* Cut chicken into bite-sized chunks and set aside , add the chicken wings to the stock , add in the fish sauce , lime juice , chillies , sugar , coconut milk and the remaining shallots . Bring to a boil then reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes then add in the the chicken chunks and cook for another 5 minutes . Stir in chili sauce in the last few seconds and give it a good stir . If using only chicken pieces , boil for 8 minutes .

* Meanwhile , boil dried noodles for 3 minutes , drain and rinse then divide into 2 bowls , pour in the coconut-chicken soup , garnish with some cilantro leaves and serve hot . 

This post is linked to the bloghop event Cook your Books hosted by Joyce of Kitchen Flavours

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Monday, December 16, 2013

Japanese sticky sesame chicken wings

Hey guys , how's your December so far ?! 

Me ?! So far , so good ! 

Dreaming of a new Canon dslr , actually *sigh* 

I've been meaning to bake cookies these past few days but cooking a much more hearty and substantial fare is much more tempting .

Blame the cold  and rainy weather .

It's not as if you can just serve only cookies for dinner , right ?!  lol

But then cookies for dinner sounds wonderful , maybe I'll bake some cookies tomorrow ....

Onto this dish , this is actually the second time that I made these sticky wings .

I always remind myself not to take photos of food especially when I'm hungry . 

Yup , cook , have a taste ,  take some photos then eat it asap but the first time was eat and not a taste test . The first batch of sticky wings was gone in a flash !

Hey , only 6 chicken wings and I was really , really hungry lol

These wings were really good - a delicious combination of sweet , spicy with a bit of tanginess and best of all , it's roasted not fried  ^___^ ''

Recipe adapted from Bill's Everyday Asian

Serves 8 ( I made half of the recipe with my slight modification in green ) 

1.5 kg chicken wings
1 tablespoon oil 
3 garlic cloves , crushed with the flat of a knife 4 cloves 
1 long red chilli . finely chopped 3 small red chillies 
4 tablespoons mirin
4 tablespoons soy sauce
4 tablespoon sake I used a cooking sake
110 grams granulated sugar
juice of 1 lime
1 1/2 tablespoons sesame seeds , toasted 

* Preheat oven to 200°C . Line a large roasting tray or baking sheet with parchment paper . Place the wings in the tray and roast for 35-40 I cooked mine for 50 minutes or until starting to turn brown . 

* Meanwhile , heat the oil in a medium-sized saucepan over medium-high heat . Add the garlic and the chilli and cook for 1-2 minutes or until the garlic is turning golden . Add the mirin , soy sauce , sake , lime juice and sugar , cook for 5 minutes or until the liquid has reduced by half .

* Remove chicken from the oven and pour over the sticky mirin mixture . Toss to coat and return to the oven , basting occasionally , for a further 15-20 minutes . Take out the sticky wings from the oven and scatter with sesame seeds . Serve hot .

This post is linked to the bloghop event Cook like a Star organized by Zoe of Bake for Happy Kids , Mich of Eat a Piece of Cake , and Yen of Eat your Heart Out .


This post is also linked to the Cook your Books event hosted by Joyce of Kitchen flavours

                                                      cyb12 photo 77951578-1914-4b72-8eda-9e40a91183ac_zps331eb4b4.jpg

Monday, December 9, 2013

Bacon and tomato-ricotta pesto wreath bread ( part whole wheat with Tangzhong starter )

So far , we're enjoying a wonderful weather here these past few weeks . 

I told myself to make bread more often , now's great time for it .

The mind is willing but the body is not . 

 I've made this bread last year , a spin from Christine's Recipes Tangzhong wholemeal loaf . 

If you haven't tried making bread with Tangzhong yet , now is the time . 

And no complaining if you don't have a standmixer or a bread machine , I've made this bread manually.

I don't know if it was the wonderful weather when I made this bread that day , the dough is so easy to handle , I was expecting the dough to be quiet sticky at first but came out really easy to manage unlike the last time I've made it . But I had to add 1 tablespoon of warm water to make the dough a bit wet since after 5 minutes of kneading , the dough is a bit dry . 

And unlike last time , where I struggled to form a wreath , this time was such a breeze ! The trick is to make a long roll , so you need to roll the dough as long as you can . No problem with this dough since it is one of the most well-behaved dough I've ever encountered lol Okay , the rectangle is not really even , it looks more like a rough rectangle but still easier to roll without tearing . I used a silicon mat , so I didn't dust the surface with flour before rolling the dough , not even the rolling pin since the dough is not sticky at all .  

Initially , the filling is supposed to be Nutella but the bacon has been calling my name for quiet sometime so .... ^____^ '' 

Recipe adapted from Christine's Recipes

Makes a 9-inch wreath bread 

200 grams bread flour
150 grams whole wheat flour 
40 grams sugar
5 grams salt 
6 grams Saf-red instant yeast
110 grams milk , warm 
100 grams Tangzhong 
45 grams whisked egg ( from 1 egg , reserve the leftover for glazing the top of the dough ) 
40 grams unsalted butter , melted 

For the filling : 

2 tablespoons Tomato and ricotta pesto 
2 tablespoons snipped cilantro leaves and stems
2 rashers bacon , fry on both sides for few seconds , let cool then slice 

egg wash to glaze

* In a large mixing bowl , combine the 2 flours , sugar , salt and yeast , use a whisk to stir ingredients thoroughly . Make a well in the center , pour in the milk , Tangzhong , egg and butter . Use a spatula  or your hand to combine everything together until it forms a cohesive dough . 

* Tip in dough to the work surface , knead for about 15 minutes or until dough is soft and elastic .  Roll dough into a ball and transfer to a lightly-oiled bowl or container , turning once to coat the dough then cover with a plastic wrap . Leave to rest in a warm place for at least an hour , depending on the warmth of your kitchen/place , until double or triple in size . 

*  Transfer dough into the work surface , knead for few seconds then using a rolling pin , roll dough to about 18 by 12-inch rough rectangle . Spread the surface with pesto, scatter the bacon and the cilantro . Starting from the long side , roll the dough into a long log , seal the edges and both sides . 

* Cut the log/roll into two pieces , braid the two piece together , keeping the cut side up and seal the ends . Connect both ends to form a wreath .Transfer to a lightly-oiled 10-inch round pan , cover loosely with plastic wrap then let rest for about an hour , depending on the warmth of your place/kitchen , until double in size .

* Meanwhile , preheat oven at 180°C . 

* Brush the top of the dough with egg wash and bake for 30 minutes or until golden brown . Serve warm or at room temperature . 

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Vietnamese fried chicken wings

As promised , to thyself .

Hey , I haven't had a homemade deep-fried chicken wings in nearly a year lol

Making the Karaage was just a start .

I'm thinking of making Japanese , Korean and Thai fried chicken in the near future .

Clogged arteries ahead ! 

Some Vietnamese fried chicken wings that you can find online has some kind of glaze - delicious , sticky glaze but the ones I have here are just plain ol' fried chicken with big flavor ! Even the chicken bones tastes flavorful - I kid you not !

You just need to marinate the mixture overnight to get that wonderful flavor I've been bragging about ^___^

The chicken is crunchy while it's still warm , so better eat it all before it gets cold ! 

The recipe comes with the ginger sauce for dipping but I've forgotten to print it before I returned the book to the library . Instead I served it with lime and my DIY spicy sauce that consists of  soy sauce , lime juice , homemade chili sauce , ginger , garlic and spring onion .

Recipe adapted from The Songs of Sapa : Stories and recipes from Vietnam by Luke Nguyen

My modification in green

1 kg chicken wings , wing tips discarded 820 grams/19 pieces mid-joint wings 

1 large clove garlic , finely chopped  2 tablespoons 
1/4 small onion , finely chopped  85 grams shallots  
15 grams finely chopped lemongrass
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon five-spice powder
1/3 cup fish sauce 4 1/2 tablespoons 
1 tablespoon granulated white sugar 1 1/2 tablespoons raw sugar
juice of 1 lime

1 cup plain flour  3/4 cup
1 cup rice flour 3/4 cup

vegetable oil , for deep-frying

* Wash chicken wings in water with a little bit of salt added , rinse and pat dry with kitchen paper/towel .

* Combine garlic , onion , pepper , five-spice , lemongrass , fish sauce and  raw sugar , add in chicken wings and use hands to mix everything together . Chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes or better overnight , if you have time . 2 hours before I cooked the wings , I added the lime juice to the chicken mixture .

* Just before cooking , shake excess marinade off wings . Mix plain and rice flour together , then one piece at a time , coat wings in flour mixture , shake off excess flour .

* Heat oil in a large saucepan over high heat , to test whether the oil is ready , drop a sprig of any green herb and when it sizzles , you can start frying .

* Working in batches so as not to crowd the pan , fry wings for 7-8 minutes or until golden brown and cooked through . Serve fried chicken wings , hot or warm , with some chili sauce that you prefer .  

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Thai chicken with cashews and chilies

Don't mind the basil in every photo . 

I told myself to blog more often and this month is my not too lazy month .

8 post in total - I need a pat in the back lol 

Maybe I should try to post at least 4 times a week ....

Ha ! 

If only there's 3 of me - one to cook and wash all the cooking/baking paraphernalia , one to take photos and one to write the effin blog post *sigh*

Well , at least if you're just a one-woman show , you'll be the only one to eat all the goodies , right ?!

I've got loads of recipes that I want to try and only a month left before we say good bye to this eventful year .

Thai food is my current favorite , besides its wonderful flavor , it is easy to cook as well .

Take this dish for example , it'll take you under 15 minutes to cook it , preparation is the key - no using any mobile device while cooking or if you're using it to check the recipe , no detour to any other sites ^_____^'' 

About this dish , 'twas not spicy at all , you would think that with 8 whole chilies in there , it'll came out spicy , I should have cut it in half , good thing that there's always my dependable standby , homemade chili sauce .

So , what's your favorite Thai food ?

Recipe adapted from Quick and Easy Thai

My modification in green

2 large dried red chilies , each cut into 4 pieces or 6 to 8 small dried red chilies
3/4 pound boneless chicken thigh or breast , cut into bite-sized chunks 350 grams 
1 medium onion , cut into chunks , about 1 cup 1/2 cup 
1 small yellow bell pepper , cut into bite-sized pieces
1 stalk spring onion , cut into 1 1/2-inch slices 
2 tablespoons fish sauce
2 tablespoons water
2 teaspoons soy sauce 1 1/2 teaspoons soy sauce + 1 teaspoon kecap manis ( sweet soy sauce )
1/2 teaspoon homemade chili sauce
1/2 teaspoon sugar omitted this 
1/2 cup dry-roasted salted cashews DIY pan-fried cashews 

To cook cashews ( Prepare this few hours ahead ) :  Soak cashews  in a cold water for 15 minutes then rinse and drain . Put in a colander and let stand for an hour . You can either deep-fry or pan-fry it with about 3 tablespoons of oil depending on how much cashews you're going to cook , I used 3/4 cup cashews , just adjust the oil  , until golden brown , drain in a paper towel . Extra cashews can be stored in an airtight jar for future use .

* In a wok or a skillet , heat some oil , over medium heat , for 1 minute then add chilies , cook and stir for 1 minute , letting them to darken a bit . Scoop out chilies and set aside .

* Increase heat to medium-high and add chicken , cook until it changes color , 1 to 2 minutes ( 4 minutes ) . Add the onion and stir-fry for 2 minutes ( 3 minutes ) until onion softens a bit and chicken is cooked through . Toss in bell pepper and cook for few seconds . Add fish sauce , water , soy sauce kecap manis and sugar  , mix well . Add the cashews , chili sauce , sliced spring onion and chilies and cook for 1 minute , stirring well to combine . Transfer to a serving platter , sprinkle with extra cashews and serve hot or warm .

This post is linked to the bloghop event Asian Food Fest : Thailand hosted by Lena of Frozen Wings

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Also at Cook your Books hosted by Joyce of Kitchen Flavours

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Thursday, November 28, 2013

Karaage ( Japanese fried chicken )

I've been mooning about fried chicken for a while now .

You'll ask , how come you you haven't made it yet ? Nobody's stopping you ?!

The same way  most people are hesitant to deep-fry - copious amount of oil .

Of course , you can just shallow fry it then baked it in the oven ....

Trust me , it wouldn't taste the same .

The craving stops here .

 I used about 800 ml of oil in making these tasty morsels .

Too much oil , right ?!

Boy , it was really worth it !

Yeah , I did enjoy it , so much , that I've been thinking of making deep-fried Vietnamese chicken wings -___-''

Waste not , want not - such a shame not to use the oil again , right ?! 

I tried the recipe of one of my favorite Malaysian  food blogger Sonia of Nasi Lemak Lover and also lurked @ No Recipessite to get some much needed pointers .

As you can see , some of my fried chicken are not really fluffy , I've shaken off too much coating before frying it  tsk tsk ! 

Using potato starch in this makes sense , since the fried chicken wasn't greasy after it gets cold . Note that potato starch is different from potato flour , okay ? Just Google what's the difference .

A generous drizzle of lemon or in my case , lime is a must for this !

Guess who've eaten all of it ?

Can you hear the crunch ? Buuurp ! 

Recipe adapted from Nasi Lemak Lover and No Recipes

450 grams chicken thigh , deboned , with skin on and cut into bite size pieces
1 tablespoon soy sauce
2 tablespoons mirin ( Japanese sweet rice wine )
1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
generous 2 teaspoons grated ginger
generous 2 teaspoons grated garlic

1/3 cup potato starch
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper

Lemon or lime for serving
steamed rice if desired 

* In a medium mixing bowl , combine the chicken , soy sauce , mirin , salt , ginger and garlic . Mix well to combine and chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes . I've added  1/2 teaspoon of chili flakes but not enough of it so it was not spicy at all , need more I think or maybe cayenne or chili sauce is much more better .

* In a small bowl , combine the starch and ground pepper and mix .

* In a saucepan , pour oil , the oil is ready if you dip the bamboo chopstick vertically and it sizzles vigorously . Or use a deep-fat frying thermometer , if available .

* Dip a handful of chicken pieces into the starch mixture until each piece is covered well . Drop into the hot oil and when the chicken pieces floats on top , it is done . Repeat  with the rest .

* Once all the chicken is done , heat the oil again , add the chicken pieces in small batches and fry until golden brown . Transfer into the paper towel and continue with with the rest . Serve immediately .

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Thai-style chicken sliders / Homemade burger rolls with Tangzhong starter

So I tried another bread recipe from the Bread Doctor book . Initially , I was thinking of adding some whole wheat flour but after watching French kneading technique on You Tube , I decided to give it a go .

After 5 minutes of of kneading a very sticky dough , I was , darn , I should have left my flour container open and put it beside me lol 

Since I'm not fond of adding extra flour whenever I bake bread , I usually put back the flour container out of my reach ..... least I'll be tempted to use it .

If you're a regular lurker of this site , you'll see that almost all of my bread except my first pullman bread were made with some whole wheat flour . Kneading is so much better especially with sticky dough  , if you substitute some of the bread flour with whole wheat . It absorbs more water , thus making the dough easier to knead . Besides , I love the texture and taste when bread is made of bread and whole wheat flour combo .

Well , as you can see , the bread turns out great , the crumbs look good , so soft ! I never thought that I could knead a very sticky dough without spouting some French words , the gorgeous weather that day , certainly helps hee hee 

This is the second time that I made these Thai-style chicken patties . The recipe is from Bill Granger , though the original name is lemongrass and lime chicken burger but the name's a mouthful .

I added some lime juice to chicken mixture since there's not enough tanginess for my taste if using only the zest .

The patties are also good as an appetizer , just shape it into small balls and pan-fry them . Of course , eating it with steamed rice is a no-brainer  ^___^ 

For the burger buns / rolls :

Makes 9 ( 60 grams dough ) I made 9 ( 40 grams dough / about 3-inch each ) and 3 ( 60 grams dough ) 

Recipe adapted from 65° Bread doctor ( Translation by Yanyan ) 

210 grams bread flour
56 grams cake flour
20 grams milk powder
42 grams caster sugar
1/2 tsp salt
6 grams yeast
30 grams egg
85 grams water
84 gramsTangzhong ( cooked water-roux mixture )
22 grams butter , melted

* In a large mixing bowl , combine the 2 flour , milk powder , sugar , salt and yeast , stir well to combine . Make a well in the center of the flour mixture and add in the egg , water , Tangzhong and the melted butter , use a wooden spoon to combine all ingredients to form a shaggy dough . Tip in dough to a clean surface , and knead for at least 15 minutes or until the dough is smooth and elastic . The dough will be very sticky but try not to add any extra flour , just throw it back and forth /or stretch and fold , after 10 minutes the dough will still be very sticky . After 15 minutes , it will come together , still tacky but so much easier to handle and by that time , your dough is ready for proofing .

* Put dough into a lightly-greased mixing bowl , cover with plastic wrap and proof until double in size , at least an hour , depending on the warmth of your kitchen .

* Divide dough into several pieces ( according to your preference ) and let rest for 10 minutes .

* Shape dough into rounds , spray or brush the top with water and dip or sprinkle with sesame seeds ; put into a lightly-greased baking sheets . Cover and let proof until double in size .

* Meanwhile , preheat oven at 180°C .

* Bake rolls for 15 minutes .

Please check original recipe at GoodFood channel

140 grams shallots , finely chopped
10 grams garlic , finely minced
5 grams lemongrass ( white part only ) , finely chopped
400 grams chicken , minced
30 grams breadcrumbs
10 grams coriander stems and leaves , coarsely chopped
zest of 1 lime
2 tablespoons fish sauce
1 tablespoon raw sugar
1 egg
1 tablespoon chili sauce
1 teaspoon lime juice

* Combine all ingredients together and mix well to combine . Shape into patties ( size according to preference ) and chill for at least 30 minutes .

* Pan-fry patties on both sides until done .

To serve : 

burger buns
mayo and Thai chili sauce , mix together
some greens

This post is linked to the bloghop event Cook like a Star , this month's feature chef is Bill Granger and organized by Zoe of Bake for Happy Kids , Mich of Eat a Piece of Cake and Yen of Eat your Heart Out 


Also linking this post to the Cook your Books event hosted by Joyce of Kitchen flavours

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Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Khao soi / Chiang Mai curry noodles

Tina of Pinay in Texas Cooking Corner is hosting an online Bake Sale for the Philippines until November 22 , US time . Proceeds will go to the people back home in the Philippines who were badly affected by typhoon Yolanda ( Haiyan ) . If you want to join the bake sale , please check out Tina's site and if you want to donate whether in cash or in kind , please do so !  Make sure you're giving away your hard-earned cash to a reputable charity like the Philippine Red cross .


Weather has been good lately in this side of the world .

A good excuse to whip up a batch of piping hot noodles .

Note that I'm not really fond of soupy noodles er with some exceptions .

If that soup is made with peanut/sesame paste combo or it has some coconut milk/ spices in it , I'll say , yes , please !

I never knew that you can make khao soi paste from scratch - I just saw the recipe from Bon Appétit after I made my khao soi  -___-

Okay ,the sauce may look like a yellow curry , it does look like it actually , and it tastes wonderful ! Just imagine the taste by looking at all those ingredients below . Heck , even just the lime and soy sauce combination taste fantastic lol

I tweaked the recipe a bit , added 1 chopped shallots , more lime juice and some fish sauce to the soup /sauce . I marinated the chicken pieces with some lime juice , fish sauce and ground white pepper for 20 minutes before frying . I also added a drizzle of chili oil on top .

Recipe adapted from Quick and easy Thai

Serves 4 to 6

1 tablespoon finely chopped garlic
2 tablespoons red curry paste
3/4 pound boneless chicken , cut into bite-size pieces (or boneless beef or flank steak , thinly sliced into 2-inch strips )
2 cups unsweetened coconut milk
1 3/4 cups chicken broth
2 teaspoons ground turmeric
2 tablespoons dark soy sauce or soy sauce
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
1 pound fresh Chinese-style egg noodles or 1/2 pound dried ( or angel hair pasta or spaghetti )

To garnish : 1/3 cup coarsely chopped shallots , 1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro , 1/3 cup thinly sliced spring onions

* Heat some oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat , fry shallots until soften then add in garlic , fry until garlic turns lightly brown . Add in the curry paste , stir and cook for 1 minute . Add in the chicken pieces and cook for 2 minutes . Pour in the coconut milk and chicken broth , stir in the turmeric , soy sauce , sugar and salt , mix well . Bring to a gentle boil and adjust heat to maintain a lively simmer . Cook for 10 minutes , stir in the lime juice and fish sauce , give it a thorough stir and remove from heat , cover and keep warm . The sauce is thick and if you like it soupy just thin it out with warm water or broth , don't forget to adjust the taste .

* Cook noodles in a large pot of boiling water (or after 5 minutes of cooking the sauce , start boiling the water ) cook fresh noodles for 2 minutes  and for dried noodles , cook according to the back label instruction . Drain and rinse well , divide noodles into individual bowls , ladle on hot sauce , sprinkle with shallots , cilantro and spring onions . Serve immediately .

Sunday, November 10, 2013

No-bake mini strawberry Oreo cheesecakes

Now , now , stop that eye-rolling !

I know , it's cheesecake again .

You wouldn't want more than half a kilo of cream cheese to get moldy , right ?!

Ha !

Is there a strawberry creme Oreo minis in your side of the world ?

No ?!

Well , not here either lol

DIY strawberry creme Oreo minis .

I've used this recipe when I first made my first no-bake cheesecake , I think that was more than 4 years ago .

If you're looking for an easy and simple , don't let the gelatine how-to stress you out , dessert to make , these minis will surely please !

Recipe adapted from Lisa magazine

Makes six 2 1/4 x 1 1/4-inch minis and two 4-inch cakes .

* Lightly butter six  2 1/4-inch loose bottom tins and two 4-inch loose bottom cake tins . Or use a cupcake liners . Or you can use an 8- or 9-inch springform cake pan .

For the base : 

12 pieces Oreo cookies I used the cookies without the creme filling
50 grams unsalted butter , softened 30 grams 

* You can either use a food processor or put the cookies in a plastic bag and bash it with a rolling pin . Combine the cookie crumbs and butter together and mix well . Press mixture about 3/4 tablespoon for  the small tins and a generous 2 tablespoons for the 4-inch pans . Put in the freezer until needed .

For the filling :

250 grams cream cheese , at room temperature
125 ml  whipping cream
10 pieces strawberry creme Oreos , coarsely chopped 14 pieces
2/3 cup condensed milk scant 2/3 
3 teaspoons / 1 tablespoon gelatine powder 3 ( 5 grams ) gelatine sheets  
2 tablespoons hot water

The recipe doesn't specify on how to melt gelatine powder , please refer to this link How to melt gelatine powder  

* Soak gelatine sheets in a bowl of cold water for 5 to 10 minutes until soft . For every sheet of gelatine , use 250 ml of cold water . 

*  Pour cream in a medium mixing bowl , using a handheld beater , beat until soft peaks form , put in the fridge to chill ( if it is too hot in your side of the world ) .

* In another mixing bowl , whisk cream cheese and condensed milk until smooth .

* Take out gelatine sheets from the cold water and wring gently to remove excess water . Put in a small bowl and pour 2 tablespoons of hot water , stir until dissolved and pour immediately into the cream cheese mixture , stir until well incorporated . Add in the whipped cream and the chopped Oreos , use a spatula to mix in everything . Pour the filling into the prepared tins and chill in the fridge for at least 2 hours , preferably , overnight .

* If using a small tins , best way to remove the cheesecake is to use a hair dryer , move it around the tin for few seconds , the cheesecake will easily pop out . Or use a clean small kitchen towel , soak it in a bowl of warm water , wring off excess water and wrap it at the sides of the tin for few seconds .