Thursday, December 31, 2009

Wishing all a Happy 2010!!!

I'm wish everybody a Happy New Year!!! May 2010 be a wonderful year for all of us. 2009 have been a bittersweet year for me. I got married but lived far away from my families and friends. I miss them a lot. I hope 2010 be a bright future, good health and prosperity with my hubby and hope to see my family soon.. ♥♥

With that being said, my last 2009 post with end with Fried Honey Chicken Drumsticks. I never like drumsticks but its my hubby's favorite part of the chicken. So this is for him..

Fried Honey Chicken Drumsticks

4 chicken drumsticks
3 dry chillies - soaked in hot water
2 cloves garlic
4 small red onions - cut in cubes
1 candle-nut
2 tbsp honey
2 tbsp dark soy sauce
abt 1 tsp sesame seeds

Deep-fried the drumsticks half cook. While the drumsticks are cooking, blend chillies, onions, garlic and candle-nut in a food processor until it become to a paste.

Heat large saucepan with a little oil and saute the blended ingredients until fragrant. Add honey, dark soy sauce, deep-fried drumsticks and sesame seeds. Add salt to taste. Cook until the drumsticks are fully cooked and coated with the rest of the ingredients. Remove from heat and serve hot with plain rice.

Have a happy, happy 2010 everybody!! Best wishes. ♥♥♥♥

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Kuih Keria (Fried Sweet Potato Donut)

Yesterday, I bought some sweet potatoes. I decided to make some Kuih Keria a.k.a Kuih Gelang (the simple fried up sweet potato dough with sugar coating). One of my favorite Malay kuih. Unfortunately, hubby never had this before and he doesn't seem to like it very much.  Its all good, I have more for myself.. hehe.. I think I must make him eat all the kuihs when we go back Singapore.. Looking at the pic, making me miss my mom's kuih keria... She made it so yummy, you just want more..

Kuih Keria (Fried Sweet Potato Donuts)

600 gm sweet potatoes - peeled and cubed
300 gm all-purpose flour
250 gm sugar
250 ml water
125 ml thick coconut milk - from half a coconut
salt to taste
cooking oil

Boil cubed sweet potatoes until soft. Mash the sweet potatoes and combine with all-purpose flour, coconut milk and salt. Knead into a soft dough.

Dust hands lightly with flour and roll each dough piece into a round ball. Flatten it slightly with the back of your hand. Slowly using your finger to poke a hole through and fashion dough into a ring. Set aside. Repeat with the rest of the dough.

Prepare oil in fryer at medium heat, and deep fry for 5-8 minutes or until golden brown. Remove and drain on paper towel.

In a small pot, cook sugar and water in a low heat till syrupy and thick. Add fried sweet potato rings and keep stirring till all potato rings are well coated with syrup and eventually crystallized.

Serve it warm or cold.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Date and Cinnamon Squares

I would like to wish everyone a Merry Christmas. I'm so looking forward to spend time with hubby as he don't have to work for 4 days. Yay!! Talking about Christmas, I like to see the decoration of some houses in this town,  very bright and colorful. There's not much of decoration at the streets, unlike in Singapore, Orchard Road and all the shopping malls, definitely, have beautiful decorations. We didn't do much, just a Christmas tree. It was fun, decorating it together. Due to in tight budget, we decided to recycled everything that we used last year for our tree. Perhaps next year, we have a better tree and decorations. :)

Anyhoo, today recipe is Date and Cinnamon Squares. I had 2 containers of date that have been sitting in my refrigerator for a while. At first, I thought of making cookies with it but I changed my mind. The recipe said 600g of dates, I was like, wow that's a lot of dates!! But after chopping and mixed with water, its not much as I thought. I really hate the chopping part. I cant believe, after chopping those dates I got a blister on my finger! Lol!!!! Well, it turned out good. Hubby loves it! :)

Date and Cinnamon Squares
(BAKING A Common Sense Guide Book by Bay Books)

600g (3-1/3 cups) pitted whole dried dates, chopped
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda (baking soda)
125g (4-1/2 oz) unsalted butter, chopped
155g (2/3 cup) soft brown sugar
2 eggs
125g (1 cup) all-purpose flour
60g (1/2 cup) self-rising flour
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon, plus 1/2 tsp, extra
60 g (1/2 cup) Icing (Confectioners') sugar

  1. Preheat the oven to 350○F / 180○C. Grease a 9 in (23cm) square shallow tin and line the base with wax paper.
  2. Combine the dates and 500ml (2 cups) of water in a saucepan. Bring to the boil, then remove from the heat. Stir in the bicarbonate of soda and mix well. Allow to cool to room temperature.
  3. Cream the butter and sugar in a large bowl using electric beaters until pale and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, beating the cinnamon into a bowl, then fold into the butter mixture alternately with the date mixture.
  4. Spread into the prepared tin. Bake for 55-60 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool in the tin for 5 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
  5. Cut into 36 pieces and place on a sheet of greaseproof paper. Sift the combined icing sugar and extra cinnamon over the cubes and toss to coat.  Serve immediately.

  • The coating will be absorbed into the cakes quite quickly if left to stand.
  • Do not coat with the icing sugar if you intend to store them. 
  • Stored in an airtight container, for up to 4 days, or up to 3 months in the freezer.
Happy Holidays!

Monday, December 14, 2009

Sweet and Sour Chicken

Taking photos of the food to post here, is not easy for me. I took many photos but I'm still not too satisfied with them. I did my homework by reading the photography blogs. It was very helpful and great tips. I really love how their photos turned out but I do not know why my photos did not turn out great! So my dear readers, please bear with me, if the photos are not so clear or blurry. I'm still trying to improve on my photography skills. Many thanks..

Anyhoo, this is my hubby's favorite. Sweet and Sour Chicken served with plain white rice. He used to order the same food from the Chinese restaurant here. Their sweet and sour chicken is just the sauce and deep fried chicken and no vegetables in the sauce at all. Totally different from the sweet and sour dish I get in Singapore.  So whenever, I cook his favorite dish, I always cook it the way I like.. with vegetables.. He just want more and simply couldn't resist it. He don't even want to order Sweet and Sour Chicken from the restaurant anymore.

Next time, I am gonna try Sweet Sour Fish and Sweet Sour Shrimps and Sweet and Sour Chicken with Lemon.. :)

1 pound of boneless and skinless chicken thighs or breasts
2 tablespoons oyster sauce
Salt and pepper, to taste  
3 tbsp all purpose flour
3 tbsp corn flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 to 1/2 cups water, or as needed 
1/2 green bell pepper
1/2 cup pineapple chunks (reserve the juice from can)
1 teaspoon finely diced green onion 
Sweet and Sour Sauce:
1/4 cup ketchup
1/2 cup pineapple juice (reserved juice from canned pineapple)
1/4 cup rice vinegar
1/2 tsp oyster sauce
2-3 tbsp brown sugar
1 tbsp cornstarch mixed with 4 tbsp water
Oil for deep-frying, or as needed

Cut the meat into bite-sized pieces. Add the marinade ingredients to the chicken. Marinate the chicken for 20 minutes in the refrigerator. While the chicken is marinating, prepare the vegetables and batter. Cut the onions and green bell pepper into chunks. Drain the pineapple and reserve 3/4 cup of juice.
To prepare the batter, mix all the dry ingredients together. Add water to make slightly thick batter. Add chicken in the batter until it is well coated. When all are ready, deep fry in pre-heated oil. Place the deep-fried chicken pieces on a tray lined with paper towels to drain.
In a bowl, mix reserved pineapple juice, rice vinegar, ketchup and oyster sauce. Heat the saucepan with a little oil and stir-fry the onions and green pepper for about 2-3 minutes. Add the mixed sauce and brown sugar together and keep stirring to dissolve the sugar. Then add the pineapple chunks. Bring to a boil and add the cornstarch mixture, stirring quickly to thicken. Taste and adjust seasonings, adding salt, or more sugar or vinegar if desired. Pour the sauce over the chicken. and garnish with diced green onions. Serve hot.

  • Deep frying the chicken - The process is quick but the chicken should not turn brown immediately. If it does the oil is too hot. The temperature of the oil should be around 360 to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Do not cover the chicken after you have deep fried.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Fried Rice (Nasi Goreng)

Fried Rice (Nasi Goreng) is a popular dish among Asians. Malays and Indonesians fried rice often accompanied by fried egg, keropok (prawn crackers), fried chicken or satay. Chinese fried rice is serve as a main dish or as a side dish. You will definitely see fried rice in Chinese or Malay/Indonesian Restaurant in their menu. In the photo, my fried rice was accompanied by strips omelet, bergedil, keropok and salad. Yummy!!!!

The  simplest and the easiest fried rice that my mom taught me was Egg and Black Pepper fried rice; using sliced onions, sliced green chilli, scrambled eggs, black pepper, salt to taste and pre-cooked rice.  That was my first fried rice. Before I knew the tricks of cooking fried rice, my fried rice was terrible. I had soggy fried rice before; vegetables were still hard, etc... it was funny! I learn as I go and always tell myself, that it will be better the next time.. :)

2 cups pre-cooked rice
1/2 onion, sliced thinly
60 gm long beans, sliced thin
50 gm carrot, cut into small cubes
50 gm green capsicum, cut into small cubes
30 gm dry shrimps, soaked and pounded
1-2 tsp chilli paste
2 tbsp vegetable oil
salt to taste

Heat oil in a wok or frying pan. Stir fry onions and chili paste and mix well. Add the pounded dry shrimps, carrots and green capsicum. Stir fry for about 3 minutes then add the long beans and salt to taste. Lastly add the cooked cold rice, mix well for 2 minutes before turning off the heat. Serve the fried rice with strips omelet on top. 

When cooking fried rice, the main key is using previously cooked rice. I usually keep the pre-cooked rice in the freezer for one or two days. Then when I want to cook fried rice, I gently rub the rice between my fingers to get rid of any clumps before cooking. By using previously cooked rice it reduces the chances of ending up with a wet and soggy dish.

For cooking the egg in fried rice, you can do two different ways; scramble the egg and mix it in with the rice or cook scrambled egg separately, then add to the rice in the final stages of cooking. Some also prefer to fry the beaten egg and cut it into strips to use as a garnish.

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Macaroni Goreng Taucu ( Fried macaroni with salted fermented soy beans)

I bought a bottle of taucu at the Asian store, wanting to cook Mee Siam the other time and I did. Initially, I do not know how much taucu I have to use for the mee siam so I just bought the big bottle (450g, 15.09oz). When I called my mom, asking her how to cook her mee siam, she told me that I do not have to use a lot of taucu. Ahhh!!! Well, the thing is, I don't use taucu except for cooking mee siam and now I have plenty of taucu left in the refrigerator..

What is Taucu?? Taucu is actually soy beans that have been salted and fermented. I know it is commonly used in Malay and Chinese food. I am not sure if Indians use taucu a lot in their cookings.. ( anyone knows, maybe you could tell me..). So I looked up in my Malay recipes book and found Macaroni Goreng Taucu and Ikan Masak Taucu. Yay!! I will whip up some Ikan Masak Taucu soon..


Macaroni Goreng Taucu (Fried macaroni with salted fermented soy beans)

* my fried macaroni dish is only consist of mushroom and carrot, but you can add raw shrimps in this dish

200 gm macaroni, cooked and drained
3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1.5 cm ginger,  thinly sliced
4 mushroom, sliced
1 carrot, sliced
1 tbsp taucu (salted fermented soy beans)
2 stalks scallions, chopped
1 tbsp sambal (chilli paste)
1/2 tsp dark soy sauce
Salt for taste - if required

Heat some oil in the wok. Fry garlic and ginger until the fragrant. (if you using raw shrimps, this is the time to add). Add mushroom, carrot, chilli paste, taucu, scallions and dark soy sauce. Sprinkle some water if its too dry. Stir for about 1-2 minutes then add the macaroni. Add salt to taste (if required). Stir well and remove from heat. Serve with chopped scallions for garnishing.

Thursday, December 03, 2009

Layered Mac & Cheese Taco

A lot of people like to eat Macaroni & Cheese.  At the store, they  sell mac & cheese in a box, easy, does not require too many ingredients and its fast. Cook it over the stove or just microwave; even faster. I have one box of mac & cheese left in the pantry and I thought what should I do with this mac & cheese. My hubby prefers his way of making mac & cheese, and I prefers mine... I have to think of something so that both will really enjoy... :)

So, I prepared the mac & cheese as indicated in the box. Then I prepared the taco meat as indicated in the taco seasoning mix package. (Click here). I added 1/2 cup sour cream in the prepared mac & cheese dinner. and spoon about 1/2 of the dinner mixture into 8-inch square baking dish. Spread the meat mixture and shredded cheddar cheese. Repeat for another layer; cover with foil. Bake for 15 minute. Then top with chopped tomatoes and shredded cabbage (or you can use salsa) and spread more shredded cheese and bake again for another 5 mins uncovered.

Serve with toasted tortillas or tortillas chips. Yummy!!! :)
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