Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Stir-Fry Garoupa Fillet with Spring Onions

This is one of my family's favourite fish dish. Garoupa is one 'multi fish', it can be deep-fried, baked, bbq, steamed, cooked in curries and even stir-fry. My favourite is stir-fry and deep-fried till crispy. The smell of fried fish is mm... really good. For dinner tonight I decided to stir-fry with lots of spring onions. When my children were toddlers, when they first started to eat rice as part of their daily meal, I always cooked this for them. They love it, the gravy goes into the rice, the spring onions cut to small bits and sweet flaky flesh of the garoupa is all it takes for them to finish their bowl of rice! Of course, when you are cooking for very young children, reduce the ginger to maybe a slice or two and omit the cooking wine.

Mmm.... yummy !

For those of you who are always in the lookout for chinese cooking, check out this blog ricepalette. I'm sure that you will find something that will certainly please you. Ricepalette, your curiosity for garoupa stir-fry is here. This is for you! Hope that you will try it out someday (and let me know if you do!).

Two slices of fresh garoupa

Separate the meat from the bones

Fillet pieces from one slice of garoupa

A generous bunch of spring onions, separate the white parts from the green

These are all the ingredients needed for this tasty dish!

The fillet marinated with cooking wine, dash of pepper and a little salt

Enjoy your meal !

Stir-Fry Garoupa Fillet with Spring Onions
Ingredients :
2 slices garoupa
generous bunch of spring onions
some ginger (sliced)
2 garlic cloves
dash of white pepper
2 tbsp of chinese cooking wine
2 tbsp of sesame oil
2 tbsp of cooking oil

Method :
  1. For fillet : Cut garoupa meat, separating from the bone lengthwise on both sides. Slice the meat into fillet pieces. The centre bones can be added in together with the fillet pieces. When slicing into fillet, feel with fingers for a bone or two usually attached on the two sides of the slices, remove the bone and discard. (Tip : cut fish when it is partially frozen, it will be easier to slice).
  2. Put fillet in a bowl and marinate with chinese cooking wine, dash of white pepper and a little salt. Do not add too much salt, you can add more salt during stir-fry. Marinate for about 20-30 minutes.
  3. Cut spring onions into 2 inch sections, separating the white part from the green.
  4. Cut ginger to thin slices. Crush garlic with knife and cut into two.
  5. Now let's get cooking ! : Just before cooking, stir gently about 2 tbsp of sesame oil to the fish fillet so that it won't stick together during cooking.
  6. Heat oil, saute garlic and ginger together for about 2 minutes until light brown and fragrant. Add in the white part of the spring onions and continue to stir for about 30 seconds.
  7. Add in fish fillet and stir gently until fillets turns white and cooked. The fillet would release a little of its own juices, which is very tasty ! Add in about 2 tbsp of water and add salt to taste. This will take about 4-5 minutes (depending on the thickness of the fillet).
  8. Add in the rest of the spring onions, stir and dish out to a serving plate. Serve hot. Enjoy!

Monday, June 28, 2010

Stir-Fry Celery with Ham

A quick, easy, crunchy and tasty vegetable dish. Just two main ingredients! Yes, that's right, just two ingredients. This dish is really, extremely, easy to prepare in a flash! Try this dish. It is crunchy and salty, absolutely delicious with a bowl of white rice.

Stir-Fry Celery with Ham
Ingredients :
5 to 6 celery stalks
3 to 4 slices of chicken ham
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1/2 tsp chicken seasoning
2 tbsp oil
1 tbsp water
pinch of salt

Method :
  1. Clean and cut celery stalks to 2 inch sections and cut to julienne strips .
  2. Slice ham to julienne strips.
  3. Heat up 1 tbsp oil. Stir-fry ham until light brown and fragrant. Dish out and keep aside.
  4. Heat up 1 tbsp oil. Saute chopped garlic until fragrant. Add in celery strips and stir for a minute. Add 1 tbsp water, chicken seasoning and a pinch of salt. Stir for another 2 minutes.
  5. Add the ham and stir till evenly mixed. Dish out to serving plate. Enjoy!
(For a crunchy taste, do not fry the celery too long. Stir-fry for 2 to 3 minutes, just long enough to cook the celery and remain crunchy at the same time. Carrots can be added in, cut to julienne strips and stir in together with the celery.)

Friday, June 25, 2010

Fried Prawns

A simple quick dish for dinner. Marinate the prawns, leave in the refrigerator and fry them just before dinner, piping hot, fantastic aroma and crunchy shells to chew on! Give this a try, it is so simple and really delicious. For a tender, sweet and juicy flesh, buy the sea prawns. The fresh water prawns tend to be crunchier but the sea prawns is much more juicy and tasty.

Fried Prawns
Ingredients :
600gm medium prawns
1 tsp celery salt
2 tsp asam jawa (tamarind pulp)
3 cloves garlic (chopped)
some coarse black pepper
oil for frying
chopped cilantro for garnishing

Method :
  1. Clean prawns, remove legs, leaving heads, shells and tails intact. Drain.
  2. Put prawns in a bowl. Add celery salt , black pepper and asam jawa with fingers gently, be careful of the sharp pointed shell (on the head), mashing the asam jawa with fingers as you mix. Cover and leave in refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.
  3. Heat oil for deep frying. Saute chopped garlic until brown and fragrant. Remove and set aside. Fry prawns until cooked and cripsy. This will take only about 3-4 minutes. Do not overfry or prawns will be tough. Dish out.
  4. Garnish with chopped cilantro and the fried garlic. Serve hot. Enjoy!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Wheat Germ Raisin Bread

Wheat germ is full of natural goodness. It contains vitamin E, folate, phosphorus, thiamin, zinc and magnesium. The texture of this bread is not as fluffy but it is soft and it stays soft the next day too. Overall, this bread tastes really good. Definitely will be making this wholesome bread again. I omitted the raisins as I wanted a plain wholemeal bread.

Wheat Germ Raisin Bread
(adapted from "Magic Bread" by Alex Goh)
Ingredients A :
120gm bread flour
85gm boiling water

Ingredients B:
320gm bread flour
80gm wholemeal flour
80gm toasted wheat germ
120gm overnight sponge dough
20gm milk powder
50gm sugar
12gm salt
9gm instant yeast

Ingredients C :
240gm cold water
1 nos cold egg

Ingredient D :
50gm butter

Ingredients E :
120gm raisins

Method :
  1. Add the boiling water from A into flour, mix until well-blended to form dough. Cover and set aside to cool. Keep it into refrigerator for at least 12 hours.
  2. Mix B until well blended. Add in C and knead to form rough dough. Add in A and knead until well blended.
  3. Add in D, knead to form elastic dough. Let it proof for 40 minutes.
  4. Divide the dough into 6 equal pieces. Mould it round and let it rest for 10 minutes.
  5. Flatten the dough then roll it up like swiss roll. Let it rest for 10 minutes. Repeat this process one more time. Place 3 pieces of dough into a greased sandwich loaf tin (size : 20 x 11 x 11cm). Makes 2 loaves.
  6. Let it proof for 50 minutes or until 80% full. Cover with lid.
  7. Bake at 220C for 35 minutes. Remove it immediately from the tin when it is baked.
Overnight Sponge Dough
100gm bread flour
60gm water (room temperature)
1/4 tsp instant yeast

Method :
Mix water and yeast until well blended. Add in flour and mix to form dough. Let it proof for 30 minutes. Wrap it up and refrigerate overnight.

(my notes : there is no instruction when to add in the raisins. I guess Mr Alex Goh has missed this step! The usual timing will be at step 3)

Saturday, June 19, 2010

French Beans with Minced Meat and Salted Fish

A simple stir-fry dish that is truly a Chinese dish, goes great with white rice. The french beans is a tasty vegetable that has a sweetness of its own. I just simply microwave the french beans to precooked it first before stir-fry. Or it can be precooked in a pot of boiling water for about 3 minutes and drain. I opt for the microwave which is quicker and simpler, with no additional pots to wash! Just three main ingredients, french beans, minced meat, salted fish and you will have a tasty vegetable dish!

French Beans with Minced Meat and Salted Fish
Ingredients :
300gm french beans
100gm minced meat (pork or chicken)
15gm salted fish fillet
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 tbsp oyster sauce
1 tsp black soy sauce
3-4 tbsp water
dash of pepper
2 tbsp oil

Method :
  1. Clean french beans and cut to 2" sections. Microwave on high for 2 minutes. Set aside.
  2. Marinate minced meat with oyster sauce. Set aside.
  3. Wash and pat dry salted fish fillet. Cut to small pieces.
  4. Heat cooking oil. Fry salted fish until brown and crispy. Remove and set aside. Saute chopped garlic until light brown and fragrant. Add in minced meat and stir for about 2-3 minutes or until meat is cooked.
  5. Add in water, black soy sauce and pepper. Stir well. Add in fried salted fish. Stir for a minute and mix in the french beans. Stir till evenly mixed. Serve hot. Enjoy!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Orange Craisin Banana Cupcake

This cupcake is really moist and delicious. It's great for tea time snack. Mine turned out really moist, maybe I add a little bit more banana than the recipe calls for. I reduced the sugar slightly because the bananas are really ripe and sweet! I use the berangan variety. I soaked the cranberries in water for about half an hour and squeezed dry before using.

Orange Craisin Banana Cupcake
(adapted from "Tempt Cupcakes To Excite" by Betty Saw)
Ingredients :
100gm butter, diced
80gm caster sugar
1 large egg (70gm)
1 tsp grated orange rind
1 tbsp orange juice
85gm self-raising flour, sifted
210gm ripe bananas, peeled and mashed
40gm craisins, 9gm reserved for topping and remainder coarsely chopped

15gm almond flakes for sprinkling
9 large paper cases

Method :

  1. Cream butter and caster sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the egg for 1 minute and add orange rind and juice.

  2. Fold in flour alternately with mashed bananas. Stir in craisins.

  3. Spoon mixture evenly into paper cases and level the surface.

  4. Sprinkle with almond flakes and place a craisin on the centre of each cupcake.

  5. Bake in a preheated oven at 175C for 25 minutes or until cooked through when tested with a wooden skewer.

my notes : I add 1/4 tsp orange essence for flavour.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Pumpkin Cake

The perfect pumpkin cake! Another great recipe from Alex Goh. I have wanted to make this cake ever since I bought his book "Fruity Cakes", but you know, there are also hundreds of other recipes that I wanted to try out! For each recipe that has been tried and crossed out, there are many more added in! Endless cycle!! I should have made this recipe ages ago.... it is so good. If you need to bake a cake as a gift for someone, close friend or a relative, then this is the perfect cake. It is soft, moist and not overly sweet, with just the right amount of pumpkin taste. The sugar is just right. I tend to reduce the sugar in almost all recipes but I did not for this. It makes a rather large cake. I use a 9" x 9" cake pan and bake for about 55 minutes. Quickly gave some away to my neighbours before I eat more than I should! Looking forward to have it again for breakfast tomorrow with a cup of hot tea (maybe coffee??. ... I'm a coffee and tea freak...)

Pumpkin Cake
(adapted from "Fruity Cakes" by Alex Goh)
Ingredients A :
250gm butter
180gm sugar

Ingredients B :
3 eggs

Ingredients C :
150gm pumpkin, peeled, steamed and mashed

Ingredients D :
320gm plain flour
1 tbsp baking powder

Ingredients E :

60gm coconut milk

Ingredients F :

80gm pumpkin seeds
120gm raw pumpkin, peeled and diced

Ingredients G :
100gm raw pumpkin, peeled and diced

Method :
  1. Cream (A) until light and fluffy. Add (B) and cream until light and smooth.
  2. Add (C) and mix until well blended.
  3. Fold in (D) and (E) and mix until well combined.
  4. Add (F) and mix until well incorporated.
  5. Pour the batter into the greased and lined mould. Sprinkle (G) on top.
  6. Bake at 175C for 40 minutes.
(You can use milk to replace coconut milk and add in 1/2 tsp of ground cinnamon to enhance the flavour)

my notes : I add in 1/4 tsp of ground nutmeg instead of cinnamon.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Sambal Petai with Eggs

Egg Sambal has always been a favourite among our family, both kids and adults. Everyone loves eggs, especially cooked in our favourite sambal tumis petai. This dish really goes well with our very own Malaysian nasi lemak or just eat it with steamed white rice. We love to make this into sandwiches with the leftover sambal for breakfast, with a cup of freshly brewed black coffee. Hmm... For this dish, I use quail eggs. As for petai, if you do not like petai then just omit it. We love petai and luckily for me, my kids love petai too! Petai is known as "stinky beans"! Petai contains three natural sugars, fructose, glucose and sucrose. It is high in potassium and low in salt, making it perfect to beat high blood pressure. This unique fruit can prevent a substantial number of illnesses. For more info on this wonderful fruit, click here.

Sambal Petai with Eggs
Ingredients :
50gm dried chillies
300gm shallots
2 cloves garlic
1 small piece belacan
1 candlenut
1 tsp tamarind pulp (mixed with 1/4 cup water and strain for juice)
100gm petai (slit to half lengthwise, rinsed and drain)
20 quail eggs (hardboiled and remove shell)
10 cherry tomatoes
1 big onion (sliced)
2 pcs kaffir lime leaves
salt to taste
1 tsp sugar
1/2 cup cooking oil

Method :
  1. Using a scissors, snip dried chillies to pieces, remove seeds and soak in hot boiling water until soften. Drain.
  2. Blend softened dried chillies, shallots, garlic, belacan and candlenuts to a paste.
  3. Heat cooking oil. Fry grounded paste and kaffir lime leaves until aromatic and oil surfaces. Add in sliced big onion and stir for about 2 minutes. Add in petai and stir for about 2 more minutes.
  4. Add in tamarind juice, salt and sugar to taste. Stir in the eggs and simmer for about 5 minutes over low heat, add more tamarind juice or water if it gets too dry.
  5. Add in cherry tomatoes and stir for a further 2 minutes.
  6. Serve with hot steamed rice. Enjoy!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Spiced Apple Doughnuts

Spiced doughnuts with apple filling. The kids love it. This recipes makes only 8 pieces of doughnuts, which is just right for us. Too much of doughnut is definitely not good for anyone! Great as an after-school snack.

Spiced Apple Doughnuts
(adapted from "Biscuits, Baking & Cakes" )
Ingredients :
225gm (8 oz) strong white flour
1/2 tsp salt
1-1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp easy-blend dried yeast
75ml (3 fl oz) warm milk
25gm (1 oz) butter, melted
1 medium egg, beaten
oil to deep-fry
4 tbsp caster sugar, to coat

For the filling :
2 small eating apples, peeled, cored and chopped
2 tsp soft light brown sugar (I use abt 2 tbsp sugar, depending on the sweetness of the apples)
2 tsp lemon juice

Method :
  1. Sift the flour, salt and 1 teaspoon of the cinnamon into a large bowl. Stir in the yeast and make a well in the centre.
  2. Add the milk, butter and egg and mix to a soft dough. Knead on a lightly floured surface for 10 minutes, until smooth and elastic.
  3. Divide the dough into eight pieces and shape each into a ball. Put on a floured baking sheet, cover with oiled clingfilm and leave in a warm place for 1 hour, or until doubled in size.
  4. To make the filling, put the apples in a saucepan with the sugar, lemon juice and 3 tablespoons of water. Cover and simmer for about 10 minutes, then uncover and cook until fairly dry, stirring occasionally. Mash or blend in a food processor to a puree.
  5. Pour enough oil into a deep frying pan to come one third of the way up the pan. Heat the oil to 180C/350F, then deep-fry the doughnuts for 1-1/2 to 2 minutes, until well browned.
  6. Drain the doughnuts on kitchen paper, then roll in the caster sugar mixed with the remaining 1/2 tsp of ground cinnamon. Push a thick skewer into the centre to make a hole, then pipe in the apple filling. Serve warm or cold.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Lemon Curd

Lemon Curd is really soft and creamy with custard-like texture. It is smooth, really full of flavour with the tartness from the lemon, sweetness from the sugar and smooth, creamy texture from the eggs. I have seen quite a number of cake recipes, pies and tarts which uses lemon curd as one of the ingredients. I really love anything (well, almost!) with lemon, I even buy my hand-soap with lemon fragrance, the multi purpose floor cleaner with lemon fragrance, even my small kitchen towel with pictures of lemon. It is a beautiful citrus fruit, with its beautiful bright yellow skin and a pleasant tangy fragrance. Even a small basket of lemons would make a kitchen looks really bright and cheerful. I got this recipe from David Lebovitz's blog. This recipe is really good. But be warned that you have to whisk the curd in a bowl over a simmering pot for a good (at least) 20 minutes! Halfway during whisking, my hand is really, really tired and I was thinking , that's it, I don't think that I will do it again! I'll just go out and buy, even though I don't know where to find lemon curd, I will just have to try and find out. When the curd is finally done, what a relief! Strain it into a bowl and lick off the spoon. Oh my, it is sooooo delicious. It is really worth the effort! Think I'll do it again? Yes, definitely yes!!

Be prepared to "arm exercise" for a good 20 minutes or so, be careful of the hot steam, courtesy from the small pot below ! Wear a mitten.

Phew! It is finally done! Beautiful colour and texture !

Couldn't wait to try it ! After all the hard work, I'm entitled to lick the spoon, right?

Wow, delicious! Tempted to take another lick, but managed to restraint myself !
Just have to wait for tomorrow, spread it on bread, biscuits, anything!

Keeping time is one week. Will it last that long????

Lemon Curd
(makes 1 cup : 240gm)
1/2 cup (125ml) freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/3 cup (65gm) sugar (or 1/2 cup, 100gm, if using regular lemons)
2 large egg yolks
2 large eggs
pinch of salt
6 tbsp (85gm) unsalted butter, cubed

Method :
  1. Place a mesh strainer over a bowl, and set aside.
  2. In a medium saucepan, whisk together the lemon juice, sugar, egg yolks, eggs and salt.
  3. Add the butter cubes and set the pan over low heat, whisking constantly until the butter is melted.
  4. Increase the heat and cook over moderate heat, whisking constantly, until the mixture thickens and just begins to become jelly-like. It's done when you lift the whisk and the mixture holds its shape when it falls back into the saucepan from the whisk.
  5. Immediately press the curd through the strainer. Once strained, store the lemon curd in the refrigerator. It will keep for up to one week.
Serving : Lemon Curd is wonderful spread on toast or crumpets. It can also be used as a cake filling and you can make a tangy lemon cream to serve alongside gingerbread by folding in a equal amount of whipped cream.