Saturday, November 28, 2009

Exam season - Nothing fancy

Oh by the by. I've recently decided I'm gonna try and pick up Food Photography. It'd be such a waste if I didn't learn, especially when I go back this Summer. Wanna do all the wonderful food I'm about to eat justice. So I'm gonna be spending more time learning how to take better photos and also how to edit them this summer. Gonna take it slow so bear with me.

Chasyu Ramen. I quite liked it to be honest which was surprising cause I never really liked the place at all before for some reason. But the soup was really thick, flavourful and not at all salty with MSG. Very springy noodles too yum yum. Plus, the meat with the fats were simply DELISH. I just wished they had given me more of the meat ;O @ Ajisen Ramen, Bourke Street.

My friend ordered this hot plate chicken and it was SOOO surprisingly good! Even had cheese in it too mmmmm

Everytime I went there with mum, they'd run out of this. But they finally had it but nothing special to be honest.

A friend made this for me once and I liked it so much I decided to make it for my sister too. Though it wasn't as good cause I might have burnt the milk. It's just black sesame glutinous ball with warm soya bean milk. Never had this combo before but makes for a great snack!

So a friend recently requested that I put up recipes for my dishes on here as well. Which was kinda embarrassing cause I'm far from being a "good cook". Here it is anyway, to all you students who wanna learn to cook a simple dish or two.

Steam Egg:
Season meat with salt, pepper, sesame oil, light soy sauce, chinese cooking wine and a bit of oyster sauce (optional). Then mash up a whole duck egg (if cooked) and mix it with meat. Line it at bottom of plate.

Later, just beat 4 eggs and add APPROX 3/4 cups of water. Add a bit of salt too. Then just pour on top.

Turn fire to high heat til boiling before covering with lid and lowering to medium heat. Steam for 8min. Check to see if egg is cooked by poking a hole and VOILA.

EASY AS. If you can cook pasta with instant sauce or curry with instant paste then you sure as hell can do this too. LMK what you think.

Also cooked a drumstick with my homemade teriyake sauce =]. Basically made it with light soy sauce, sake, mirin, sugar and a bit of honey. Don't know the measurements cuz lotsa trial and error before being satisfied with it

Steam Chicken:
Rub chicken with salt, and put some cut up garlic (4 cloves) and ginger (1 thumbsize) on and around the chicken. Then, steam for about 15-20min. Make sure have enough water to create more steam to cook faster. I normally fill water up til about 1cm from bottom of plate.

Nothing special. But quick and easy meal. Chop up ingredients and chuck it to be steamed.

Anyway, my friend requested for "you chai", aka "Oil Vegetable" to eat with the steamed chicken for dinner. So I decided to "Dai Chao", aka "Big Fry" for the first time. That is, stir fry with extremely high heat. So quick and exciting! Careful not to burn your food too much, yo.

What kept me going the past few weeks. Instant coffee from Malaysia. Oh so much goodness to choose from each night.

Don't judge me. But I had the weirdest craving/curiosity for baby food the other day. I mean, I'm sure they taste good since I vaguely recall the ones back home (Nestle or Nestum brand) being really nice!

WRONG. It was horrible. Maybe it's not as bad, but it tasted like oat meal, and I hate oat meal (Not Aussie enough, mate!). So tasteless and disgusting! So I did what every Malaysian would do, add lots and lots of Condensed Milk (Susu Cap Junjung)!! And even made the effort to chop up some bananas. After all that? Still tasted like crap, pffffffft.

No wonders babies throw up all the time

Anyway on my days when I wake up groggy and am too lazy to cook anything for lunch, I'd head over to the cafe downstair to get meself some lunch. I'd always hesitate cause it's really ordinary but I'd always end up paying $15-17 just for lunch. CRAP. And I always order the same thing, Roast Lamb with Roast Potato and Pumpkin. Don't mean to sound like a prick, but I can do it better. The price I pay for convenience some times.

Although, it's kinda funny cause every one at the cafe would be in their business suits and all and suddenly you have this short small Asian kid walking in with his oversized Giordano T-Shirt and sweatpants trynna order some food over while walking amidst a sea of towering people =]

Baked Honey Mustard Chicken. Ingredients: Honey and Mustard.

OK. Here's the real reason why I haven't gone insane in Australia. It's cause I've got my stock of Sarawak White Pepper. I mean, for Western food I'd always use ground pepper but when it comes to ASIAN FOOD.... My my my... What would I EVER do without my Sarawak White Pepper, seriously.

Food mostly prepared by Ellie at Jin's housewarming. Spot the Cheeseballs?

A very very satisfying home cooked meal (notice the mountain of rice) with Indian Eggplant, Korean minced meat, Mushroom Omelette and Leftover Lamb Stew during one of the nights of studying for exams.

Thaaaaaat's all folks! Will be having a Potluck with all the Eng guys this Sunday night, so should be interesting! Gonna dedicate a whole post to all the food cooked by me and my friends that night so stay tuned, kids!

Monday, November 9, 2009

I keep my promises

This time in chronological order. Nothing fancy. Hope you enjoy anyway =)

CURLY FRIES!!!! I go nuts with these every time they sell it at McDonald's, Malaysia during Chinese New Year. Was ecstatic when I found these @ Aldi Superstore.

One of the simplest complete meal I've ever made. I've been wanting to go back to get these Kentucky Schnitzel @ Vic Mark for a long time cause I liked it so much the first time I had it. Glad I finally could. Anyway, pan fried schnitzel, baby spinach with balsamic vinegar and baked curly fries. I really only had to cook the schnitzel and dinner was prepared. NO SWEAT.

Made my first attempt for Crispy Skin Pork (Siew Yoke) and it tasted surprisingly good! And so simple that even a brainless monkey can do it. Highly recommend you guys to attempt to make your own Siew Yoke too. Recipe can be found at:

Wanted to try it with a small portion first and bought this beautiful piece of Pork Belly @ Footscray Market.

My housemate bought some really delicious Curry Puff @ Footscray. Have to ask him which store it's from. Apparently it's a famous one so some of you should know.

Anyway, since I was young I've always liked deep fried medium-sized red fish. So I decided to try deep fry it myself when I came across these ideal red fishes that I liked so much @ The Footscray Wet Market. Unfortunately, I still don't know the name and still refer to it as the red fish =/. Gotta ask Mum

Also, I've always preferred medium sized fish cause I like the skin more than the meat and that way I don't have to eat a huge chunk of meat to get a small piece of skin =). That's why the Lou Xu Ban, aka "Mouse Grouper" is one of my favourite expensive fish to eat, just cause of the size. Unless it's a really good fish like the "7 Star Grouper" or Hoi Dai Gai, aka "Underwater Chicken", etc, then I wouldn't mind them big =P

Yee-ha! Got 2 of these bad boys for about $5 only... WIN! Cooking your own food from the market is seriously so much cheaper and nicer. Dressed them with dark soy sauce and deep fried shallots (which my parents brought a whole jar of from KK ;p)

Attempted Chinese Wine Chicken the other day too. Just dumped the usual stuff like chinese mushrooms, chinese fungus, red dates and ginger and that's about it. Easy as. Only wished I had pan fried the chicken first but no matter. The broth went so well with rice so I was really happy with it =)

This was all I ate the first two days I was sick. Lots and lots of porridge. Here we have plain porridge with Bovril, century egg, canned black bean fish and omelette with preserved vegetable called, "Chai Bu". Not really sure what it is but it's what we eat with omelettes sometimes. Can't see it cause it's inside the porridge.

This omelette and "Chai Bu" always brings me back to the time my Late Grandfather's brother visited us from China. It was the first time we'd meet him so we had a family dinner with relatives that I didn't even know lived at KK! And seeing him was really touching cause I never got to see any of my Grandfathers and this was the closest I got to doing so at the time. And Dad told me that this Granduncle is still as fit and healthy as he was 50 years ago. He does lots of vigorous exercise to get to places in China and only eats porridge or food with very little oil and taste. So when he visited, he was so nice to give us some of this "Chai Bu" too. Such a memorable day.

So anyway, that's the grandmother story of why "Chai Bu" Omelette means a lot to me every time I eat it. Also it tastes great. I'll cook it for you guys one of these days.

When I was sick, I was constantly hungry cause porridge only filled your tummy up for a while. So I made the effort to pack myself the healthiest lunch I've ever prepared. I mean, three course meal, bebeh! Appetizer: Avocado salad, Main: 4 slices of Tuna Sandwich, Dessert: Green Apple. My tummy felt so complete and satisfied after that. At the time, I was still having very bad sore throat so I didn't want anything cooked or hot, period.

The no-oil diet continues on Day 4 of sickness. Sis made wontons so I made Seaweed and egg soup with glass vermicilli to go with it =)

ZOMG. Had this for lunch today and I enjoyed it so much!! It's Japanese ox tongue with rice (Gyu-Tan Don). Honestly, it's nothing like what you'd imagine. Tastes exactly like beef, but much nicer and chewier. And it was cut very thinly and cooked with a tasty sauce. YUM YUM YUM. Big thanks to my sis for the recommendation. Please order it anytime you're around the area. Can have it @Menya, Melbourne Central (in between Harajuku Crepes and Boost Juice).

There was 5 of us studying at my place just now, so I decided to cook a MASSIVE pot of Lamb Stew for everyone. If only I made it more presentable. Anyway it still tasted pretty good. Cooked it with some Pasta sauce, Heinz Smoky BBQ Sauce and Lea&Perrin's Worcestershire Sauce =D. Made extra so I can pop the leftover in the fridge overnight so it can taste better the next day. Always works with any kind of stew woo hoo!

As a hobby, I like to either cook/visit food blogs/blog about food. Surprise surprise. Told you I wouldn't let too many pictures pile up this time.