Fried Rice (2)

This is my life: Wake up at 4 to feed the little one, put her to sleep, prep for breakfast. Take a nap from 5:30 to to 7. Wake up and cook breakfast for A, clean up at 7:30, feed the little one at 7:45. It is no easy task feeding two persons with very different dietary requirements!

Decided to do fried rice today, the Sister provided this recipe. I followed it somewhat, did not brown the garlic as I didn’t want to risk the garlic turning bitter. Did not manage to try it, so I don’t know how it turned out. A does not give honest feedback either, so I guess we will never know!

I also sauteed some broccoli + carrot + frozen corn, and stir fried some Iberico pork belly slices. A’s lunch breakfast box was packed to the brim, and he complained that it was too much food. There’s just no pleasing him!

I LOVE LAMB CHOPS OMG

I convinced A that I needed lamb chops to survive the week’s lunch, so we drove to not one not two but three locations to find chops. We ended up at a butcher shop along Bukit Timah Road and spent $21 on three lamb loin chops! Who would have thought lamb chops would be so expensive?!

So I did the most basic of recipes:

  1. Season the chops with salt, pepper and dried rosemary
  2. Heat the pan and add extra light olive oil
  3. Place the chops in
  4. Add a dollop of butter and smashed garlic cloves into the pan
  5. Flip the chops when it’s time

The chops turned out AMAZING. I wasn’t sure if I overcooked it, but the meat was a nice medium when I cut into it. I paired it with ketchup because I love ketchup, although I think I should experiment with actual meat sauces one day.

Now to source for cheaper lamb chops. I can’t eat $20 lunches everyday 😦

Hong Kong Noodles

Grabbed a random pack of “Hong Kong Noodles” off the shelf in the cold section of the supermarket, don’t remember how much it cost but it couldn’t have been expensive. I’ve had craving for Swee Choon’s 葱油面 for some time now, but since I am now chained to a 5kg monster, such cravings have to be satiated DIY style.

I followed this recipe exactly and the results were fantastic. The noodles were oily and sweet and onion-y, perfect for a quick lunch. When the sister came over, we paired it with teriyaki salmon and sauteed mushrooms (odd choice, but that’s all I had in the fridge).

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Then, I found another recipe for fried noodles and have since cooked it thrice because fried noodles is more efficient than 葱油面 in that I do not need to cook additional dishes. I modified the recipe in the following manner:

For the sauce, I used soy sauce, dark soy sauce, brown sugar and sake. I left out the sriracha as I didn’t have it. Instead, I added chilli padi into the wok.

For the ingredients to be added to the noodles, I experimented with long beans, sliced shiitake mushrooms, egg omelette strips, shabu shabu pork strips and carrot ribbons. The possibilities are endless!

I really like the second recipe, and to my utmost surprise even A gave a nod of approval. This shall be my new go to recipe when I run out of cooking ideas.

Pan fried chicken thighs

Some time ago I found myself having to cook for only A and me, so with much excitement and enthusiasm I decided to do a one dish meal by pan frying chicken thighs. I followed this recipe and it turned out pretty wonderful! The cooking time was long but it actually gave me time to lounge around instead of hovering over the pan in the kitchen.

I served this up with a modified version of this side dish (substituted bacon with pork slices and corn with mixed beans) and dinner was ready!

I really do relish in trying out non-Chinese style recipes, though those opportunities are few and far between.

Birthday Mee Sua

It was the MIL’s birthday, so I decided to cook mee sua for dinner. My family uses tang hoon instead of mee sua, but apparently the “correct” choice is the latter. The last time I cooked mee sua was for A’s birthday, I can’t remember how I did it but I recall it was an overkill on ingredients. I was determined not to repeat that, and besides the mee sua was meant to be a staple to go with other dishes.

I largely followed Noob Cook’s recipe, but I used ready made chicken broth from Swanson instead of cooking from scratch with chicken drumsticks and chicken carcass. I don’t know where to buy chicken carcass and ain’t nobody got time for that on a weekday.

My end product in a bowl contained soup, mee sua, hard boiled eggs, shiitake mushrooms and xiao bai cai. It was my first time cooking soup with shiitake mushrooms, and I thought that greatly enhanced the flavour. I shall include mushrooms more often from now on!

Stray Observations:

  • I cooked hard boiled eggs for the first time in my life. I placed the eggs in a pot of water and brought to boil for about 10 minutes, then I turned off the stove and left them for about 4 minutes before rinsing them under cold water. The yolk turned out just slightly runny, which was ok, but I had trouble peeling the shells! I’m sure there’s a fool proof method to perfectly peel eggs, I shall Google it soon.

Soups (1)

The mother has been giving me something called huai shan, she says it is nutritious and can be cooked in soup. The last stick of huai shan ended up in the trash can because 1) I had no idea how to cook it 2) it started growing furry stuff all over!

I finally googled it and found out that 淮山 is in fact Chinese yam! To be honest I was slightly disappointed, I was expecting it to be something more exotic. Also, yam = carbohydrates, something I am not too crazy about.

Nonetheless, I did some research on yam soups and came across this website with simple enough recipes. I needed to clear the overflowing containers of fish stock in the freezer, so I went with the Pork soup with Chinese yam and goji berries.

The internet says I should wear gloves or something protective over my hands when handling the hairy huai shan, and I did just that. Upon peeling the skin I realised the flesh was sticky, gooey and very slippery! Chopping it up into chunks required more caution and I was terrified of chopping off my fingers. Well, I learn something new everyday!

Confession time: I actually have a slow cooker which we purchased when we first moved in, but I have never taken it out before, so I don’t know how to use it. There wasn’t time to fiddle around with a new equipment, so I turned to my trusty stove top soup pot to boil the soup. After 2 hours, the soup was ready and it tasted really great!

Stray Observations:

  • A said I overcooked the yam. That is true, after all the yam was simmering inside for 2 hours. I shall make a note to add the yam 1 hour into cooking.
  • I added carrots, because I like carrots.
  • The mother-in-law commented that she doesn’t like to drink fish soup because of the fishy smell (referencing the soup I cooked a few days ago), but this soup was fine. She doesn’t know that this was in fact the same fish stock as before! I think a combination of long simmering + ginger slices masked the fishiness very well.

Steamed Cod Fish (2)

I wrote about steamed cod fish a while back, since then I have upgraded and now include chai poh in my cooking. I follow this recipe quite closely except I do not season with salt and pepper before steaming – chai poh is already salty despite the rinsing, and there’s already chopped chilli padi in the chai poh mixture, so I’m thinking the pepper taste will be quite negligible.I ran out of ginger the other day and didn’t layer ginger slices beneath the fillet, the dish turned out fishier than usual! I always had my doubts about ginger removing fishiness but now I’m sold on this. My only problem now is that I don’t know how to store cut ginger! I should go google this.