Archive for foodie

Coconut Prawn Fritters

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As featured in  Tastespotting

Just a little afternoon snack  (and light dinner) I felt like having yesterday. Although I was actually craving for Singaporean Chili Crab. Yups, just not the right season (and country) for that. The prawns I got from the hotel’s kitchen, are from Dalian, I think. Nice to have a little of seafood again after a while…..

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I shouldn’t be posting recipe in details because it’s soooo easy to cook.  Just make sure the prawns are cleaned & deveined, split in the back, marinate shortly in salt, pepper, lemon & garlic, rolled in flour, dipped in lightly whisked white egg, rolled in dessicated coconut.

Deep fried in oil until it turns color to beautiful yellowish. Place on paper towels to soak the remaining oil.
Ready to be devoured with sweet chili sauce dipping…….

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Crusty Loaves with Gruyere Cheese


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As a true coffee junkie, I am constantly on a search for recipes of breads/cakes and other savouries to go with it. Although, in my opinion, the best match for morning coffee is cheese bread. This is such a wonderful loaf to bake. I was so excited when I prepared the starter dough the night before, wondering what wonderful taste & texture it would be like. I found the recipe from  HERE,  referred by Temperance on her Bread Baking Day#16. The starter puffed up very nicely overnight. Proofing took most of the time of the entire baking though, baking process only took about 30 mnts. So short, for such a rewarding result.

That morning my entire kitchen is wafting the smell of freshly baked cheese bread. The use of gruyere cheese – which I added a bit of mozzarella and drizzles of garlic oil, is just puuuurrr-fect!!! It’s melting beautifully, moist in the inside, crusty on the outside. Guess who loves it the most….. Mike 😀

This recipe is definitely going to be on the menu very often….

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CRUSTY LOAF STUFFED WITH  GRUYERE CHEESE

Ingredients:
(i) Starter
* 1 1/4 cups unbleached Bread Flour
* 1 teaspoon salt
* 1/2 teaspoon instant yeast
* 1/2 cup cool water

(ii) Dough
* all of the starter
* 1 cup + 2 tbs to 1 1/4 cups lukewarm water*
* 1 tsp salt
* 3 1/2 cups unbleached Bread Flour
* 1/2 tsp instant yeast
* *Use more water in winter time

(iii) Filling
* 2 1/2 cups grated Gruyère cheese, or your preference
* 1 tbs garlic oil (optional)

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Baking Directions:

1)  Starter: Mix the 1 1/4 cups flour, salt, yeast, half cup of water.
Cover & rest overnight

2) Dough: Combine the risen starter with second one,
water, salt, flour & yeast. Knead until elastic.

3) Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl, cover,
let it rise for 1-2 hours, till it’s nearly doubled in bulk.

4) Gently deflate the dough, stretch it into a 4 inch thick,
about 9″ x 12″. Sprinkle with the grated cheese.

5) Roll it into a log, pinching the seam to seal.
Place the log, seam-side down on a lightly oiled surface.

6) Cover & let it rise for 1 to 1 1/2 hours, till puffy but
not doubled in bulk. Preheat the oven to 425°F.

7) Gently cut the log into four crosswise slices, for mini-breads;
or cut in half, for two normal-sized loaves. Place on silicone sheet.
Spritz with warm water, immediately place them in the preheated oven.

8) Bake for 20 – 35 mnts or until the cheese is melted & loaves are
a deep golden brown. Cool on a rack.

Recipe from: HERE

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Submitted for a food event
“Bread Baking Day #16: Cheese Bread”
Hosted by Temperance ~  For more information & participation, have a look HERE


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Soto Kudus


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Soto Kudus ~  Indonesian Chicken Soup, Javanese Style.  “Kudus”  is a city in Central Java, Indonesia.  There’re so many varieties of “soto” or soup from different parts of provinces in Indonesia. This particular one is quite easy to distinguish from its dominant garlicky flavours from generous sprinkles of deep fried garlic, delicious clear chicken soup with a hint of ginger, toasted coriander seeds and squeeze of lemon juice….. 

One of our weekend eat-out with my family when I was a little, was this great little place near Mayestik Market where they served the best Soto Kudus. It’s so good that my family decided to make it a must-stop restaurant  every Sunday afternoon.  The main thing about the whole dining experience is it’s usually served with a plateful of various kind of skewered yummies as side dish – paru goreng, sate usus goreng, sate telur puyuh, perkedel kentang and my favorite one sumsum goreng telur. Important condiment is also a must for me, chili soy sauce mixed with fried garlic.  It adds an entirely different flavours to the soto.

I find this recipe tastes very close to the original Soto Kudus I used to have, and am still crazy about.



 

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SOTO KUDUS
Indonesian Chicken Soup – Kudus Style

Ingredients:
* 6  pcs chicken thighs
*  4 pcs boiled eggs
*  200 gr bean sprouts, soak in hot water 5 mnts
*  celery stalk/spring onion, chopped
*  2 stalks of lemon grass, bruised
*  2 pcs bay leaves
*  3 tbs of  garlic fried to golden yellow color
*  salt, pepper, sugar to taste

Processed ingredients till smooth:
* 6 pcs garlic
* 6 pcs shallots
* 1 tbs roast coriander seeds
* 1/2 tbs cumin
* 6 pcs roast candlenuts
* 4 cm fresh ginger, slightly roasted

 

Cooking Directions:
1.)  Boil chicken in 1 ltr of water, lemongrass & bay leaves till tender
2.) Heat 1 tbs of oil, stir fry processsed ingredients till cooked
3.) Pour into the chicken pot, add salt, pepper, sugar & fried garlic
4.) Set aside and cut chicken into bite size strips
5.) Prepare individual bowls with: steam rice, boiled eggs, bean sprouts
    chicken strips, pour in steaming soup, sprinkle with spring onions
6.) Don’t forget those tasty chili condiment….  whoa yummy!

Chili for Soto:
* 10 pcs bird’s eye chili or red chili – slice thinly
* 2 tbs sweet soy sauce
* slices of indonesian palm sugar (gula jawa)
* 2 tbs fried garlic – smoothen
* sprinkles of lemon juice
(mix them all together)

 

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Tahu Telur Petis Surabaya


Image Hosted by ImageShack.usTofu & bean sprouts doused in special black peanut sauce –
delicacy from East Java   –  as featured in Tastespotting

Tahu Tek Surabaya – or loosely translated as Tofu Bean Sprouts Salad with Black Peanut Sauce – is quite a special dish for East Javanese in Indonesia. As you already know, Indonesians are serious food fanatics. Many would go overboard going to the farthest corner in a small alley tucked away somewhere in a market 2 hrs drive or even further, for the best dish of its kind. Like the best suckling pig in Bali, is at Bu Oka’s behind an old temple of Ubud, or for Tahu Telur Petis Surabaya, the best of its kind is at Pak Ali’s little warung on Dinoyo Street in Surabaya. How I miss home talking about this now ….

But thanks to Mbak Lisa for her recipe, I managed to bring some of the authentic Surabayan flavours to my home in Inner Mongolia. Two packs of petis udang brought from Indonesia are now being put to use. Petis udang is a black shrimp paste, pretty similar to ‘belachan’ or ‘terasi’ but not quite, as it has a stronger pungent scent, richer flavours and slightly moister than their counterpart.

The dish is mostly vegetable based and eggs, except for the peanut sauce which contains some shrimps. I didn’t make it too spicy for Mike and by cooking the peanut sauce seems to take away some of the strong flavours of petis & garlic. Otherwise he wouldn’t touch the thing and I would have to cook something else.

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TAHU TELUR PETIS SURABAYA

Ingredients:
* 1 block of tofu, cubed bite size
* 1 egg whisked
# Whisk the egg with salt, add tofu and spring onion.
# Make a tofu omelette, then cut into bite size

Black Peanut Sauce:
* 2 cups of fried peanut, processed
* 2 pcs fried garlic, minced
* 2 pcs red chili minced
* 2 tsp shrimp paste (petis udang)
* Dark sweet soy sauce (tiny bit only)
* salt, palm sugar to taste
# Cook garlic + chili, add peanut and a cup of water over low heat
# Cook till the sauce change to a thicker brighter reddish color
# Add petis, salt, drizzles of soy sauce. Stir for 1-2 mnts

Serving directions:

Place tofu omelette, then a one-minute blanched of bean sprouts, sprinkles of chopped spring onions, drizzles of black peanut sauce and top with fried shallots. Some krupuks on the side would be nice too

Image Hosted by ImageShack.us“Petis Udang” – special delicacy of Jawa Timur
(East Java) in Indonesia

ALL ABOUT “PETIS” in Indonesian  –  Petis is presumably only made in Indonesia. It’s the real shrimp paste (deep dark color like licorice, not dry at al like terasi or belacan but gooey, stronger & richer flavours great for salad mixing and most East Java dish)


This dish is submitted for JFI – Sprouts Event hosted by Ammalu’s Kitchen. More information to join the event can be viewed on her blog  HERE.


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More Indonesian Recipe using this special delicacy “Petis”
Krengseng Kambing or Stewed Lamb/Goat by Indonesia-Eats Blogspot
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Beef Croquettes

Catching up on my postings that I missed for almost 2 weeks since my computer crashed! What a headache, it began with a seemingly innocent download update from microsoft that causes some programs do not work – followed by internet connection crashing. I ended up spending the last 4 days re-installing all of the programs + their plugins, which sounds easier than done. Now I got the necessary program running, but my sound card is messed up pretty good. Don’t understand why….   oh well!

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This week is just not my good week. Being stuck in the hotel for most of the time, I could only find limited grocery to cook with.  Not too bad with the croquette though.  Great for afternoon snacking while getting my feet warmed up in a pair of fuzzy socks and a cup of warm ginger tea in hand.

 

BEEF CROQUETTE
(you may alternate beef roux with potato fillings instead)

Ingredients:
* 400gr minced beef  (can subs with chicken if you wish)
* 1 large carrot, tiny cubes
* small bunch of parsley, finely chopped
* 1 large onion, finely chopped
* 2 pcs garlic, crushed
* 300 gr of toasted breadcrumbs
* 4 pcs of egg white
*  1 cup grated strong vintage cheese

Roux (filling) ingredients:
* 80 gr of butter
* 80 gr of flour
* 3 cups of beef stock
* salt, sugar, white pepper, nutmeg to taste

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Directions on how to make roux:
1.) Melt the butter in a pan slightly brown.
2.) Add flour all at once and stir until completely mixed
3.) Keep them on low heat while adding stock/water bit by bit
3.) Keep stirring until the mix is smooth & creamy enough to mold. Set aside

Cooking the croquettes:
1.) Melt butter to cook onion & garlic until fragrant
2.) Stir in beef, carrot & parsley until cooked through
3.) Mix roux & beef together – add salt, pepper, nutmeg & grated cheese
4.) Set aside and refrigerate for a while so it would be easier to shape
5.) Shape roux mixing into balls of 4cm diameter
6.) Coat with flour, dip into whisked white eggs,
       then double coat it again with toasted breadcrumbs
7.) Deep fry until light golden color. Set aside and drain on paper towel.

The croquettes are best served hot with mustard dipping. Our family’s favorite is Dijonnaise Mustard by Masterfoods. Yummie!!!

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Winter Comfort: Red Beans & Green Chilies Soup

 

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The weather is getting chillier now in IM. Although I stay indoors most of the time and have the grocery shopping delivered to the room, I went outside yesterday for a quick stroll to a bakery next door. They have great pastry selections that are just perfect for morning coffee and afternoon tea.  Well, I got the pastries, but came back feeling horrible. Sniffles, heavy head and chest. I think I’m getting a bad flu. Can’t believe it, over a 20 minute stroll?

Good thing that I made the soup right before the flu hit hard. It was quite easy and quick to prepare, unlike the Indonesian “soto” or soup that would usually mess up my kitchen.  A nice change in the menu. I love the flavours of green chilies blend in nicely with red beans. A few pieces of pork ribs also brings out a nice rich flavour to the soup. Oh, I oven-roasted the rest of the pork ribs with minimum barbecue seasonings.  Some slices of corn bread on the side.

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CORNBREAD RECIPE
**Recipe from Mark Bittman – NYTimes

Ingredients:
* 4 tablespoons butter, olive oil, lard or bacon drippings
* 1 1/2 cups medium-grind cornmeal
* 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
* 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
* 1 teaspoon salt
* 1 cup sugar
* 2 eggs1
* 1/4 cups milk, more if needed

Cooking Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 180C. Put fat in an 8-inch square baking pan.
     Place pan in oven.
2. Meanwhile, combine dry ingredients in a bowl.
3. Mix eggs into milk, stir this mixture into dry ingredients, 
     If mixture seems dry, add a tablespoon or two of milk.
4. When fat and oven are hot, remove skillet or pan
      from oven, pour batter into it and smooth out top.
5. Return pan to oven. Bake about 30 minutes,
     until top is lightly browned
6. Serve warm

 

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RED BEANS & GREEN CHILIES SOUP

Ingredients:
* 2 cups of dried red kidney beans, soaked overnight
* 1/2 cup chopped green chili peppers
* 3 cloves minced garlic
* 1 pcs large onions, chopped
* 2 pcs bay leaves
* 3 pcs of pork ribs
* 1/2 cup diced carrots
*  3 tbs tomato pasta
*  1 stalk leeks – sliced
* some diced bacons
* 2 tbs Sherry
* salt, pepper & sugar to taste

Additional Seasoning:
* 3 tbs paprika  powder
* 2 tbs cayenne pepper powder
* dried leaf oregano
* dried thyme

Cooking Directions:

1.)  Cook chopped onions & garlic until transparent
2.)  Add chopped green chilies, bayleaves, bacon/pork, stir for 2 mnts
3.)  Add beans, water & additional seasonings.  Add tomato pasta
4.)  Let it cook until beans are tender. Add carrots
5.)  Remove about 1 cup of  beans & pureed. Add leeks
6.)  Add sherry & pureed beans. Simmer for about 5 mnts
7.)  Serve hot with corn bread

 

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Soto Betawi – Indonesian Soup

 

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I’ve posted the recipe previously in this blog – and two other blogs. I just want to give a different touch to the dish being served with sprinkles of toasted coconut, accompanied by a bowl of steamed rice. The yellow stuff on top of the rice is “Serundeng”  or spicy toasted coconut. I made it from dessicated coconut, sprinkles of palm sugar, ground chilis, a touch of ground dried shrimp and shredded fresh lime leaves. It matches beautifully with the soto.

Soto is another word for Indonesian soup, which usually more fragrant than the normal soup people know, as we would use lemon grass (plus other basic “soto” ingredients) lime leaves and coconut milk. Probably the best beef ribs soup – that is if you like rich oriental spices in your soup combined with a dash of light coconut milk stewed until the ribs are juicy and tender. Roasted candlenuts, fresh galangal, ginger, lemon grass and kaffir lime leaves make this soup so refreshingly different.

 

SOTO BETAWI

Ingredients:
* 400 gram beef ribs
* 1 kg brisket (some bones if you have)
* 2 pcs bay leaves
* 3 stalks of lemon grass – bruised, tied into a knot & dump into pot
* 3 cm fresh galangal – roast in naked flame until fragrant
* 2 cm fresh ginger, sliced
* 3 pcs kaffir lime leaves
* 250 ml coconut milk
* 500 gr potatoe – cubed
* 4 cm cinnamon stick

Ground spices:
* 12 pcs shallots
* 7 pcs garlic
* 5 pcs red chilis
* 8 pcs candlenuts – roast in naked flame till fragrant
* 1 tbs coriander powder
* 1 tsp cumin powder
* 1 tsp white pepper powder
(all ground smoothly, then stir fry in cooking oil until fragrant)

 
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Cooking Direction:

1.) Boil water with lemon grass, roast galangal, bayleaves in a pot &
     cook ribs + brisket until tender. This should take a while.
2.) In the mean time shallow fry cubed potatoes until golden brown
      (this time, I only steamed the potatoes, running out of cooking oil)
3.) When ribs & beef are tender enough, mix in the stir fried
       ground spices, kaffir lime leaves and cinnamon stick.
       Add salt + pepper, and pinch of sugar if needed
4.) Serve steaming hot. Place cubef potatoes first, then the ribs & soup.
       Sprinkle with chopped spring onions, chopped tomatoes

Nothing beats this steaming hot soup and a bowl of warm rice with sprinkles of toasted coconut in the freezing winter like out here in Inner Mongolia  😀
      

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RECIPE for  SERUNDENG  (toasted coconut topping)

Ingredients:
* 200 gr desiccated coconut
* 4 pcs kaffir lime leaves – shred to pieces
* 6 pcs shallots – ground smooth
* 4 pcs garlic – crushed
* 1 tsp powder red chili
* 1/2 tbs powder coriander seed
* 1 tbs palm sugar (gula jawa)
* 1 tbs dried baby shrimp (rebon) – ground smooth
* 2 slices of fresh galangal root
* salt & pepper to taste

Cooking Directions:

1.) Stir fry shallot + garlic in 1 tbs of olive oil until fragrant
2.) Add ground baby shrimp, galangal, coriander
3.) Stir in coconut & mix throroughly. Add sugar, salt, pepper
4.) Keep on low heat, keep stirring, this may take a while
      until the coconut takes the beautiful color of golden light brown.
5.) Some kaffir lime leaves may leave a bitter-ish taste if cooked
       too long, some are just fine.
6.) Serve as topping of the steamed rice, or mix in with the rice

 

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