Archives for posts with tag: for the first time

Made these porkchops with sous vide tonight. I think it was a bit overcooked, good thing for the spicy mango chutney to give that kick to it. Boys didn’t really like the mango sauce at first. After a few bites, they found it goes well with the pork chops and had more. IMG_0237

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How cool is to have a ceramist as our neighbor? Yes, the husband is a poet and the Mrs. is now a ceramist (and a retired English teacher!) The boys help them with little things (pick up newspapers when they travel, water plants, etc.) and in exchange, she invited the boys to come over her studio working with clay. They spend a some time with her today and had a blast. Thank goodness she lives so close (totally save on the travel time *wink*)

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Skipping our meatless Monday today and made Hainanese chicken rice for the first time using the new toy – sous vide. Mr. Piggy bought this new tool almost a year and I’ve never gotten a chance to use it. He raved about it when he brought it home, but never touch it. Of course, he was waiting for me to do something with it. Finally today using the sous vide, we tried making the Hainanese chicken. Luckily he’s working from home so I can cook “remotely.” I prepped all the stuff last night and gave specific instructions for Mr. Piggy. Sorry the pictures are a bit blurry (they’re from Mr. Piggy’s phone). There’s not much cooking involved. Instead, just need someone to get it in the pot and remove it.

Chicken is cooked 3 hours at 75 degrees C using the sous vide.

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When done, give the chicken an ice bath and then air dry it for a good 3 hours.

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Voila! When I came home, I just need to cook the rice (using the chicken stock) and stir fry some greens. Dinner is served! The chicken is tender and juicy. My boys gave it two thumbs up and they claimed this to be ‘one of the better dinners.’

IMG_0001Though this doesn’t require much attention as the tool will cook to precision, however, you still need someone to “do the work.”

Attempted my first batch of the traditional mooncakes from scratch (and bombed it). There are many steps to it and it’s a great test of patience. Though I made some of the ingredients a head of time (golden syrup, the lotus paste and the dough), I was in and out of the house this weekend because of Ah Lo’s basketball tournament. It was hard for me to get this done correctly (with the time constraints). I am too embarrassed to show the end result. I won’t give up that easily. I will keep trying…

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I have always loved the chewy and slightly spongy texture of the braised EFu noodles (yee-meen 伊麵). They are very common in Chinese restaurants. These noodles tend to go with straw mushrooms and Chinese yellow chives (or sometimes with crab meat). They are supposed to be dry, and not all restaurants make it right (tend to bring it out with sauce). This dish is on the higher price mark on the menu. Today, decided to make it and can’t believe how easy to make them. I’ve added some homemade XO sauce to give it a little kick.IMG_9994

Vegetarian day and I’m running out of ideas. Searched online and came up with this yaki soba recipe. The ingredients are like any other stir fried noodles, the difference is the sauce. I’ve searched online on some simple homemade yaki sauce and it consists of: oyster sauce, soy sauce, ketchup, rice vinegar, sugar and some Worcestershire sauce. I pretty much have everything except the last item. I wasn’t gonna go out to get it, so I left it out. I tasted the sauce and it was fine to me. IMG_9893I threw all in the ingredients in, stir fry and pour the sauce over it. Thank goodness for the griddle! Voila, my first time making the yaki soba (without really knowing how it really taste) and it was pretty easy. IMG_9896Ah Lo and Mr. Piggy are not too crazy about the whole wheat noodles, and Dai Bee was too hungry to tell the difference and ate two plates! Personally, I thought it was pretty good and can’t wait to try it again (except using pork next time).IMG_9899

Love love love green onion buns, so meaning to try baking it myself. This batch lacked the green onion flavor. I knew I didn’t have green onions to begin with, but too lazy to get more, so I ended up using whatever I had. I will try again!IMG_9839Boys don’t seem to mind it (they’re not big fans of green onions). IMG_9850

This is what we’re having tonight: steamed chicken in lotus leaf plus some greens. This is the first time I’m steaming chicken wrapped in lotus leaf, together with dried lily buds, wood ear and dried red dates. IMG_9821The lotus leaf helps transfer the fragrance to the chicken, with all the other dried ingredients, this turns out to be a deeply flavorful and nicely-scented dish. The explosion of fragrant steam from the lotus leaf will definitely get me to try another dish using it. It’s a winner since the boys approved it!IMG_9822

Simple but flavorful meal tonight – lotus root cakes, garlic lemongrass salmon and eggplants over minced pork. Been trying forever to find ways to keep the hue of the eggplant. It seems every time when I stir fry or deep fry the eggplants, they turn out brown. With the less appealing color, I’ve tried many ways to work around it (adding salt to the water, adding oil, not covering lid, blanch it cold water, boiling water). This one is the best I did so far using this method: right after cutting it, I dumped it (2 at a time) in boiling pot of water, with white part facing up. I used the ladle to hold the eggplants all the way down until it’s soft enough. I don’t know if there’s a better way, but so far, this is the most color I’ve seen cooking the eggplants.

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Here’s what we are having for meatless Monday. I’m expecting some leftovers because both of my boys are not too crazy for tomatoes. I love tomatoes and wish my boys do too.

I used chicken broth to blanch the hairy gourd, different from how I normally cook it (usually stir fry with glass vermicelli). Hmmm…can add some more flavor to this dish.

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