Wednesday 30 July 2014

"Pe-par" Tofu 琵琶豆腐

"Pe-par" Tofu 琵琶豆腐

Recipe : Adapted from Delicacies recipes
This "pe-par" tofu is a simple everyday dish. It's just a matter of mashing the nutritious tofu and combining them with minced meat, some herbs and some seasonings and you have got yourself a plate of delicious fried "pe-par" tofu. 

For an enhanced  flavour, dip them into this hot chilli  Vietnamese dipping fish sauce.

The normally bland tofu now tasted heavenly!  


1 block of soft tofu, mashed
2 small dried mushrooms, soaked and finely diced
100g minced pork/chicken
1 tbsp chopped spring onions
1 tbsp chopped Chinese parsley
1 egg
4 tbsp cornflour
1 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp oyster sauce
a dash of pepper
Oil for frying


1.  Mix the mashed tofu, egg, minced pork, diced mushrooms, chopped spring onion, chopped Chinese parsley and all the sauce ingredients and cornflour together. Stir to mix evenly.
2.  Heat enough oil for frying in a wok. Spoon one tablespoon of the mixture into hot oil and fry until golden. Repeat process until all the mixture is finished. Remove them once they are fried to golden brown.
3.  Serve tofu patties with chilli sauce or try making this wonderful Vietnamese dipping fish sauce.

Sunday 27 July 2014

Mushroom Pottage Soup

Mushroom Pottage Soup

Recipe source :  Doris Choo @ Sumptuous Flavours

My friend, Sharon was talking about her mother's potato soup. She shared with me that it can  be easily made and that homemade mushroom soup is very tasty. Sharon did not record her recipe so I had to figure out and estimate the amount of ingredients used. 

I made this for my son, YS who loves mushroom pottage soup. It  was thick and creamy. The soup was delicious. It has the aroma of  mushrooms and potatoes. However, it wasn't smooth like the famous Campbell's pottage mushroom soup.

The plus point is that there is no additives or preservatives.


200g fresh button mushrooms
350g potatoes ( about 3 medium-sized potatoes )
300g milk
800ml water
1/2 tsp chicken stock granules
1 tsp salt
dash of pepper
1 tbsp butter


1.  Peel potatoes. Cut one potato into small cubes. Cut the other two potatoes into chunky pieces and place them into a blender with 500ml water.
2.  Slice 3 to 4 button mushrooms into thin slices. Roughly chop up the rest and place them into the blender with the potatoes. 
3.  Blend the button mushrooms and potatoes into puree.
4.  Pour the puree into a medium-sized pot.
5.  Add in the potato cubes and sliced button mushrooms. Add in 300ml water.
6.  Boil over medium flame until the potatoes are soft. Stir occasionally to prevent sticking to the bottom of the pot.
7.  When the potatoes have soften, add in milk, salt, butter, chicken granules and pepper.
8.  Adjust taste. Switch off  flame.
9.  Enough for 4 to 5 persons.

I am linking this post to Little Thumbs Up


The theme for July  2014 is Potato

Hosted by Jasline of Foodie Baker

Wednesday 23 July 2014

Black Forest Cherry Cheese Mooncake

Black Forest Cherry Cheese Mooncake

Recipe :  Flavours Magazine

I love making jelly mooncakes. And it goes without saying that I love eating them as well! I treat them more as a jelly i.e. more as a dessert than as a traditional mooncake. Which means I can make them anytime I feel like eating jellies. They are colourful and very refreshing, especially when they are well chilled before being served.

I always serve jelly mooncakes as desserts after a hearty Mid-Autumn dinner which my family celebrates without fail every year.  We need to keep traditions and cultures alive, to pass on to the next generation even though these may be mere jellies. It's the symbolism that counts. A symbolism of sharing mooncakes, Chinese tea and pomelos with friends and family gathering together to admire the full moon and the children's brightly coloured lanterns! 

Just talking about it has already gotten me into the mood  of looking forward and anticipating the Mid-Autumn festivities.

For cherry cheese filling ( makes 6)

3 1/2 tbsp water
2/3 cup UHT milk
50g sugar
1 tsp agar-agar powder
50g cream cheese, soften
10 pitted cherries ( from canned cherries ), drained on absorbent paper

Equipment : round tart moulds


1.  Bring the first 4 ingredients to a boil. Add in soften cream cheese and stir continuously with hand whisk. Turn off heat once mixture starts to bubble and pour into round tart moulds.
2.  Add in 2 pitted cherries into each mould and allow to set completely before chilling in the refrigerator for another 30 minutes.


Cherry Syrup Skin ( enough for 3 only because my mooncake mould is big)

2 1/2 tsp agar-agar powder
1 3/4 cups water
70g sugar
4 tbsp cherry syrup
1/4 tsp red colouring

Equipment : round jelly mooncake moulds


1.  Bring the first three ingredients to a boil.
2.  Add cherry syrup and colouring and bring to a quick boil again.
3.  Pour in 1/2 cm of this syrup into a jelly mooncake mould and allow to cool until it is almost set.
4.  Place one piece of pre-prepared cheese filling into the centre of the jelly mooncake mould.
5.  Fill up with cheery syrup skin mixture and allow to set completely. It takes about 20 minutes to set. 
6.  Chill in refrigerator for another 30 minutes.

Saturday 19 July 2014

Sweet & Sour Stir-fried Crab 酸甜炒螃蟹

Sweet & Sour Stir-fried Crab 酸甜炒螃蟹

Recipe source ; Doris Choo @ Sumptuous Flavours

This recipe is handed down from my late father-in-law. This was how he cooked crabs - with thick cucumber slices. I have eaten plenty of sweet and sour chilli crabs but never came across one with cucumber slices until I married SK and sampled my father-in-law's special sweet and sour crabs!

It was unique and rather refreshing to have cucumber among the crabs pieces, smothered with sweet and sour gravy and beaten eggs. Yes, it was very refreshing to bite into these thick cucumber slices. Not to mention the fresh and succulent crabs! 

This is definitely finger-licking good!


1 kg crab, depending on the size of the crabs, cut into halves or bite-sized pieces
2 eggs, beaten
4 shallots, chopped
5 pips garlic, chopped
5 chilli padi, sliced
1 cucumber, cut into thick slices
3 tbsp cooking oil

Sauce Ingredients

3 tbsp tomato sauce
1/2 tsp salt
2 tbsp vinegar
2 tbsp sugar

Place all the sauce ingredients in a bowl and mix evenly. Set aside.

Thickening Solution

1 tbsp cornflour dissolve in one and a half bowls of water


1.  Heat 3 tbsp of oil in wok using medium heat.
2.  Add chopped shallots, garlic and chilli padi and stir-fry until fragrant and garlic has turned slightly brown.
3.  Pour in sauce ingredients and fry for 1 minute.
4.  Add crab and stir-fry and ensure sauce ingredients coat the crab pieces thoroughly.
5.  Add cucumber slices and stir-fry to mix well. 
6.  Add cornstarch dissolved in one and a half bowls of water. Mix well and cover the wok and let it boil for 3 to 5 minutes. (If it gets too thick you can add a little bit more water)
7.  Add in beaten eggs and stir thoroughly. Let it boil for a further 3 minutes.
8.  Dish up and serve.

Friday 18 July 2014

Ginseng Roots - How to store them

Ginseng Roots - How to store them

I have had these old ginseng roots which my late mother-in-law had bought. She had stored them in jars and left them on the shelves where it remained for a long time. 

The other day I brought down the jar to check on the roots. They were very hard, in fact too hard for my kitchen knives to slice. I had to asked for assistance from the shop proprietor selling Chinese herbs to help me cut them into slices.He assured me that the quality of the ginseng roots is still good and to use them sparingly i.e. in small doses in soups and stews as the herbal properties of ginseng is very potent. 

Since I have so many pieces of ginseng roots left, I looked up on its herbal properties. The Chinese herbal books said that ginseng retards ageing and strengthens the immune system. It is good for circulation, improves "qi" and have the power to improve the mental capacity of a person.

The herbal books further cautioned that we consume ginseng only in small doses as over consumption of ginseng may bring about side effects like high blood pressure, insomnia, headache and a rise in body temperature.

Top : ginseng root
Bottom left : ginseng slices. 
Bottom right : odd bits and pieces which can be used

How to store ginseng roots

1.  Dry-fry a bowl of rice grains in a clean pan or wok until the grains turned yellowish.
2.  Remove from pan or wok and cool the fried rice grains thoroughly.
3.  Ensure the fried rice grains are totally cooled down.
4.  Place the ginseng roots into a jar and pour in the cooled down rice grains.
5. You need to change the fried rice grains on a yearly basis i.e. pour away the old grains and fry another fresh batch of rice grains to store the ginseng roots.

Note :  

1.  This is an effective way of storing ginseng roots. 
2.  A method handed down by both my late mother and my late mother-in-law. 
3.  Actually, the shop proprietor who sliced the roots for me, taught me the same storage method.

 This is how I stored them : in rice grains which had been pan-fried in a dry wok.

These are the remaining stock which have been in storage for close to 20 years.

Tuesday 15 July 2014

Pork Adobo With Pineapple

Pork Adobo With Pineapple

Recipe source :  Filipino Style Recipe

I love pineapples and I love pork. So when I saw this pork adobo with pineapples I just had to try it out, especially when the cooking instructions are simple to follow. 


500g pork, cut into serving pieces
1 cup pineapple chunks
1/4 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup vinegar
1/2 cup pineapple juice
6 cloves garlic, crushed
1 onion, sliced into rings
1 tsp peppercorns
3 pieces bay leaves
2 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
2 cups water

Pork slices

Pineapple slices




Bay leaves


1.  Combine pork, garlic, bay leaves, peppercorns, soy sauce and pineapple juice. Marinate for 30 minutes.
2.  Place the pork and spices into a pot. Add 2 cups water and simmer for 30 minutes or until the pork pieces are tender.
3.  Pour in vinegar, pineapples and onion rings and simmer for another 5 to 10 minutes.
4.  Add salt and sugar to taste.
5.  Remove from heat and transfer to serving bowl. 

I am submitting this post to Asian Food Fest  : Philippines
Hosted by Swee San of The Sweet Spot

Wednesday 9 July 2014

Special Steamed Chicken Curry Pau 蒸咖哩面包鸡

Special Steamed Chicken Curry Pau 蒸咖哩面包鸡

Recipe source :  Inspired by Coco Kong ( Y3K magazine )

While browsing at a bookstore I came across a recipe by Y3K magazine featuring  Coco Kong's cookbook on various "pau", including this steamed version of a pau filled with chicken curry.  As I was reading, I remembered my friends telling me about a coffee shop located in Klang which sells this speciality pau.  I have yet to visit that shop to sample their speciality, but after reading the recipe from Coco Kong, I guessed I am gamed to try it out. 

Now, here I am sharing my humble experience. Half-way through making it, I  realized that these pau are going to be huge because I needed plenty of dough to wrap up the foil cups! The end results was totally out of my expectation. I did not envisage the pau to be this big. Anyhow, I managed to make four gigantic pau, measuring more than six inches in diameter each. 

It was very satisfying when my son showed me the thumbs up!  We both agreed that they were truly finger-licking good!

A point to take note - the pau dough was enough to make four huge pau but there were plenty of chicken curry left over. So, if you are making this, do remember to reduce the amount of chicken curry or alternatively, make more pau dough to use up the chicken curry.

Double thumbs up!!

Ingredients for Chicken Curry ( recipe by Doris Choo @ Sumptuous Flavours )

1/2 a chicken ( about 550g )
3 large potatoes ( about 500g) - peeled and cut into pieces, then deep-fried
2 1/2 tbsp curry powder
80g minced chilli
80g shallots, finely chopped
30g garlic, finely chopped
1 cup coconut milk  ( santan)
1 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp soya sauce
4 tbsp cooking oil 

Utensils required

4 aluminium foil cups

Potatoes - deep-fry the potato pieces

Top left : minced garlic. Top right : minced shallots
Centre :  curry powder
Bottom left : santan. Bottom right : minced chilli


1.  Heat wok until hot. Add in 4 tbsp cooking oil.
2.  Saute chopped garlic and shallots until fragrant. Reduce to medium flame. Add in minced chilli. Stir to mix well.  
3.  Add 2 tbsp coconut milk , followed by the curry powder. Stir evenly until red chilli oil oozes out. 
4.  Add in chicken pieces and mix well. Fry for 2 to 3 minutes. 
5.  Add in 4 Chinese rice bowls of water. Bring to a boil.
6.  Pour in the deep-fried potatoes. Stir to mix well.
7.  Allow to simmer for about 12 to 15 minutes until done.
8.  Remove and let it cool down before spooning the curry chicken into 4 aluminium foil cups.


Ingredients For Pau Skin ( recipe is from Blue Key Pau Flour )

1 tsp instant yeast
180ml warm water
330g pau flour (sifted)
50 fine sugar
1 tsp double action baking powder
25g shortening


1.  Place pau flour, baking powder, sugar and shortening into a mixer bowl. Dissolve yeast in warm water. Pour yeast into the mixture and knead until a smooth dough is form. 
2.  Cover dough with cling film and let it rest for about 30 to 40 minutes or until it has doubled its size.
3.  After proofing, divide dough into 4 portions. 
4.  Roll out one portion of dough into a large circle. Place one aluminium cup containing the curry chicken onto the dough and wrap it up and gather the edges together on top of the pau,
5.  Alternatively, wrap a piece of rolled-out dough on top of the aluminium cup and gather the edges to seal at the bottom of the cup.

Step 4 and 5 of wrapping the pau
Bottom left : the edges are sealed underneath the pau.
Bottom right : the edges are sealed on top of the pau.

 The result of method 4

 The result of method 5
 Chicken curry inside a steamed pau!

I am linking this to Little Thumbs Up


The theme for July  2014 is Potato

Hosted by Jasline of Foodie Baker


Monday 7 July 2014

Pig Trotters With Black Vinegar 猪脚酸

Pig Trotters With Black Vinegar 猪脚酸

 Recipe source :  Gigi Wong on Astro ( Hong Kong actress )

This is a traditional confinement dish which is ever popular and is always featured in cookbooks on confinement food. This is also one of my favourites even when I am not in confinement.

I have been craving for this dish ever since I watched Gigi Wong's cooking show on Astro a few months back. It was interesting to watch her cook this dish step-by-step but it would have been even better if she had given the precise weights and measurements for each ingredient used. 

Anyway I was eager to try out Gigi Wong's way because she cooked it differently from how my late mother used to cook this for me during my confinement. Gigi Wong dipped hard boiled salted duck eggs into the black vinegar in  addition to hard boiled chicken eggs. I like the addition of salted eggs! They tasted less salty after being immersed in the black vinegar. Gigi Wong dry-fried the ginger pieces before adding a dash of oil and salt to it. The ginger pieces were crunchy. Very nice, even though the ginger were old and matured. 

The sweet and sour vinegar soup was so tasty that I drank several bowls after the trotters and eggs were gone! I guess I'll have to go on a strict diet for at least a week or two after consuming so much fat. And I shall have to suffer guilt pangs and worry about cholesterol, clogged arteries and possibly a coronary by-pass!

Note :  
1)  Do not remove the skin from the old ginger. I was told that much of the nutrients and goodness reside there. 
2)  Use a clean toothbrush to clean and remove the dirt particles from the old ginger.

Bon appetit!



800g pig trotters , cut into pieces and blanched in boiling water. Drain dry.
6 chicken eggs, hard boiled and remove shell
2 salted duck eggs, hard boiled and remove shell
300g old ginger, cut into thick slices and give them a smack using the side of a cleaver
250ml black vinegar
1000ml water
 A dash of sesame oil
1/2 tsp salt
130g cane rock sugar


1.  Dry-fry the ginger pieces in a wok until the ginger pieces are slightly charred around the edges.
2.  Add a sprinkle of salt and a dash of sesame oil to the ginger pieces. Remove and set aside.
3.  Place water and black vinegar into a pot, preferably an earthen pot, and bring contents to a boil.
4.  Add fried ginger pieces and cane rock sugar and the hard boiled chicken eggs and salted duck eggs.
5.  Continue to boil over slow fire for about 45 minutes. 
6.  Then add pig trotters and boil until they are tender. About 30 to 45 minutes.
7.  Add salt to taste. 

You can see the contrast between the salted duck egg and the chicken egg

Super-duper yummy!

Friday 4 July 2014

Food For The Gods (A Filipino Date & Walnut Bar)

Food For The Gods (A Filipino Date & Walnut Bar)

Recipe source : Adapted from here

I was searching for Filipino recipes when I came across this cake. I find the name, " Food for the Gods" most unusual for a cake! Having said that, I remember having eaten this before. I searched my memory and it clicked back to a party many moons ago. The hostess was very proud to serve " Food for the Gods" which she had specially ordered for the occasion. She went round ensuring that her guests tasted this cake and she loved the look of surprise on her guests' faces as she mentioned the name of this cake!

I love the walnuts and chopped dates which made this cake chewy. 
This is truly sweet and decadent!


1 cup plain flour
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp baking powder
1 cup dried dates, pitted and chopped
1 cup unsalted butter, melted
1 cup brown sugar
2/3 cup sugar
1 tbsp honey
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1 cup walnuts, coarsely chopped

 Sugar, chopped walnuts and brown sugar

Dried dates. 
Chopped these and use only one cupful


1.  Preheat oven to 180 degree C. I used a 9 inch square tin lined with parchment paper.
2.  Sift flour, salt and baking powder into a small bowl. Transfer half of this mixture to another bowl and dredge the chopped dates in it.
3.  Combined melted butter, brown sugar, sugar eggs and vanilla extract in a large bowl. Mix until batter is uniform. Add honey and mix again.
4.  Fold flour into the batter. Lastly fold in chopped walnuts and the dates which have been dredged in flour. 
5.  Pour batter into the prepared tin and bake in oven for 25 minutes or until done.
6.  Cool completely before slicing into bars.

I am submitting this post to Asian Food Fest  : Philippines
Hosted by Swee San of The Sweet Spot

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