Yam Rice – Recreated

August 27, 2008 at 1:18 pm

A little drama first…

Yesterday, I told Jelly I will cook yam rice for dinner and got her to prepare the ingredient, frying the yam, boiling the meat and slicing the mushroom.

When it was 6:15pm, I asked her to get the rice rinsed and I’ll do the cooking. She replied, “I’d already cooked the rice, mum”
WHAT????
“I said I’m cooking yam rice right? Why did you cook the rice first?”
“I thought you want, mum.”
“I was just upstairs, you could have asked me right?”
“I thought must cook rice, mum.”
“You don’t even have to call me on the phone, you just need to ask me, that also you can’t do?”
“I thought..”
*cutting her off*“What about the chicken stock?”
“I used to cook the rice, mum.”
WHAT THE ….??? Hate it when they don’t bother asking!!
….. Anyway, Yam rice I’m going to have. So whatever rice she cooked, I got her to store away, we can do a fry rice later.
GRRRR…

~~~~~~~~~~~~~ . ~~~~~~~~~~~~~

I’d been cooking yam rice without following a recipe, yesterday I decided to follow this Yam Rice recipe from Delicious Asian Food.

I found what I’d been doing wrongly all this while cooking yam rice the way I did.
1) I fried the uncooked yam cubes with the rice – making the yam very mushy when served
2) I threw away the water that was used to soak the dried shrimp – wasted
3) I didn’t pre-cook the meat, sometimes causing the rice to have the ‘smelly chicken’ smell.

Here is the recipe (I replaced pork with chicken and used an estimated measurement to make cooking easier):

Ingredients
1 small yam dice (cut into small cubes and pre-fried till light brown)
1 piece of kampung chicken breast (the recipe used belly pork, since we don’t eat pork, I use chicken instead).
6 pieces Chinese dried mushroom (pre-soaked until soften. Retain the water used for soaking)
1 handful of dried shrimps (pre-soaked in water for about 5 minutes. Remove dried shrimps and retain the water used for soaking)
Water for boiling
2 cups of rice (rinsed)
4 tablespoons palm oil

Seasoning
1 tablespoons light soya sauce
1 tablespoon dark soya sauce
1/4 teaspoon of white pepper powder
1 teaspoon salt

Method
Bring a pot of water to boil and add chicken. Remove scum from water. When chicken is cooked removed from water and allow to cool. Slice the chicken into small pieces.

Heat up 2 tablespoons of shallot oil (we always have this ready at home). Add mushrooms and stir fry for 2 minutes then add dried prawns. Continue stir-frying for a while until fragrant.

Add chicken and rice and continue stirring and then add the seasoning. Once the rice is evenly coated with seasoning, add the chicken stock (whatever we have left after Jelly used it to cook the first batch of rice) and water previously used to soak mushrooms and dried prawns. Transfer this to rice cooker.

If need to, add more water to cover rice mixture (this call for your normal rice cooking intelligence to know how much water is enough). Switch on the rice cooker. Once rice starts to boil, add pre-fried yam and cover. Allow it to cook till done.

And this was what we had for dinner yesterday.

Yam Rice

The yams are in cubes not mashed up, the rice has the fragrant of dried shrimp (must be from the water that’s used to soak the dried prawns). I had another plate of left over just now for breakfast, and the dried shrimp fragrant was very profound. Yummy!

Go try out this recipe or any other recipes from Delicious Asian Food. And while doing so, stand a chance to win USD100. Click below for details.

Delicious Asian Food USD100 up for grabs

Japanese Style Meals

March 17, 2008 at 2:02 pm

After my Japan trip, I’d been attempting to try to prepare some dishes with Japanese flavour at home.

Every weekend, we’ve been having salad with Japanese style dressing.
Japanese Style SaladSauce : 1 tbs teriyaki sauce, 1 tbs soya sauce, 1 tbs sesame oil, 1 tbs Udo’s oil blend, 1 tbs lime juice, 1 tbs toasted sesame

Yakitori – grilled chicken or Japanese Satay as Zara calls them.
Yaki ToriSeasoning : salt, pepper and Mirin; or teriyaki sauce

Zucchini with miso paste
Zucinni with Miso & Sesame pasteSauce : Miso paste and ground toasted sesame.

When we have these, the girls will be happily having their Mac and Cheese.

Partying Days Are Over

January 7, 2008 at 3:22 pm

During the year end, there’s normally a lot of partying to do within the family. There are lots of birthdays to celebrate, and then Christmas and New Year celebration etc etc.

Here are some photos of 2007 year end parties (oh well, if you could call the eat-and-talk, eat-and-more-talk sessions parties).

Tasha’s birthday was celebrated in a Chinese Restaurant, it was also my dad’s early Christmas treat to the family.
Tasha's birthday

Tasha’s cuting her cake. The girls checking out the Elmo Jelly cake

We had a Nasi Lemak pot luck at King’s Wife’s place on Christmas Eve.
Christmas Even entertainment

My father entertaining Zaria; The older kids played charade while we adults do the guessing

We also celebrated Zaria’s 1st birthday together with my brother’s XXth birthday. Since Lilian from a Piece of Cake could not bake Zaria’s cake, I made it myself. Banana cake with Mascarpone frosting.
Zaria's and my brother's cake

Applying the frosting and drizzling toffee just before it was served (kids have fun helping and licking the spatula). Not too bad looking for a first time effort (in frosting a cake).

Before 12am, kids were getting restless and eager to open up the presents.
Presents opening time

All happily checking out the presents while Zaria was more keen on tearing the wrapper than the present itself.

Turkey was too expensive this year, so instead of paying for a RM200 bird, I roasted a RM14 chicken at home on Christmas Day.
Christmas Dinner

Preparing the potato casserole; the chicken all roasted; the chicken ready to be served; the mix fruit and nuts stuffing

Last week, I was still working half days on certain days. Now that the holidays are over, it’s back to the grind! Baaaa!

De-stressing with Cooking and Baking

December 18, 2007 at 11:21 pm

(Thanks to all who’d commented with advice and encouring words in my last post, really appreciate it) 

There’s the office work to complete before the Christmas shutdown.
There’s the paid post to do to make some extra cash.
There’s time to spend with the two girls who now require as much attention.
My way of de-stressing besides going for retail therapy and having a really good meal which can only happen during the weekends is to get myself busy the kitchen.

Besides whipping out the Christmas pudding; I attempted to bake a banana cake with toffee banana filling and mascarpone icing; since A Piece Of Cake will not be around to bake Zaria’s upcoming birthday cake, I thought maybe I’ll attempt the feat this year. The icing needs to be worked on as it was melting real quick. I hope Zaria’s cake will turn out better.

I kept myself busy cooking for the 2 fussy girls (the ‘wai-sek’ or greedy Zaria is becoming real fussy with her food now, sigh, so I had added fish to her diet to give her food more flavour); and also made a real good Hokkien Mee or Har Mee. The latter, I just bought the spice, taught Tuyam how to make it and supervise her cooking.

Last week’s creation.

Banana Cake with toffee banana and mascorpone icing

Banana cake with toffee banana filling and runny mascarpone icing

Penang Hokkien Mee/Har Mee

This home-made Penang Har Mee or prawn noodle is so delicious I tell you.

Hearty Fish Slice Noodle for the girls

The girls’ fish slice mee suah (Chinese : Wheat noodle)

And for those who have asked, Christmas pudding really is a type of cake which is either steamed or boiled, and not the same as the jelly like Chinese dessert that we are more aware of. For those of you who are interested in getting the recipe, it can be found here.

Homemade Christmas Puddings (WordlessFew Words Wednesday)

December 12, 2007 at 5:05 pm

Daddy wanted some home made Christmas Puddings. The wife got busy one weekend….

Ingredients for Christmas Pudding

Mixing the dough

Forming the doub balls before wrapping

The dough ball

Tying the ball

Boiling the dough

Drying the pudding

Yummy Christmas pudding

Daddy and the few neighbours I gave this to claimed it’s really nice.
Home made Christmas puddings anyone?

Food for Older Baby

November 13, 2007 at 1:24 pm

We’d started to make lumpier food for Zaria as well as introducing new food to her such as macaroni, noodles and spaghetti. No meat or eggs for her yet, and she’s still fully ‘vegetarian’ until she turns 1 (just to lower the risk of allergy).

She’s having 3 meals a day now. Breakfast is normally oat with fruits; banana or avocado. Lunch is mainly fruits but sometimes her dinner is cooked earlier, and she’ll have a bowl of her dinner for lunch. Dinner is always something savoury.

Zaria's lumpier cereals

Here are some of the things we cooked for her :
Apple, broccoli, carrot cereal (cereals are always made using : brown rice, buckwheat, millet and quinoa)
Red spinach cereal
Cauliflower and potato cereal
Carrot porridge with mashed toufu
Carrot and turnip porridge
Purple cabbage cereal
Red dates and gooseberry porridge
Zucinni with cherry tomatto millet porridge
Beetroot cereal
(as shown in above photo)

Her favourite type of food is actually soup (ABC soup minus the meat; ‘pearl bean’ soup; herbal soup) with rice, noodle or macaroni.

Last Sunday I made fry spinach noodle for her, and she just loved it. We can tell she loves something because she’ll be shouting “mum-mum mum-mum” excitedly and impatiently throughout the meal.

Zaria having spinach noodle

The recipe :
~ 30ml blended boiled spinach (as the sauce)
~ finely shreded carrots
~ finely chop spinach
~ chopped shallots
~ small amount of cooked plain wheat noodle (or mee sua)
Fry shallots with small amount of olive oil until fragrant; stir in carrots and fry until soft.
Stir in noodle and chopped spinach until spinach is cooked.
Pour in the blended boiled spinach to coat the noodle evenly.

She loved it so much she even clapped her hands after the meal.
Yeh!

Homemade Baby Food and Others

August 1, 2007 at 2:47 pm

I like the colour of Zaria’s food, so I thought I’d take photos of her every day meal for a few days.

She has so far been given mainly home made cereals (brown rice, quinoa, millet) with vege or fruits, and occasionally, we add some Earth Best Whole Grain Rice Cereal when we need to thicken her fruit or vege puree.

She loves pumpkin, apple, pear, sweet potato, banana, papaya; accepted potato, carrot, cauliflower, spinach, plum, brocoli. She refused avocado twice, using her tongue to push it out and turning away from the spoon.

We started with cereals (brown rice, millet, quinoa) and then later added one fruit or vege to her cereal. Sometimes we just give her 1 type of fruit or vege puree, e.g. puree pumpkin, puree papaya or mash sweet potato or mass banana. Later, we started mixing her favourite item to her vege cereal so that she will enjoy it more, e.g. brocoli + apple cereal; cauliflower + pumpkin cereal.

She enjoys meal time, opening her mouth eagerly, shouts out when the feeding is not quick enough.
Zaria's Cereal

From memory : spinach cereal, mash purple sweet potato, carrots cereal, brocoli cereal, plum puree, cauliflower cerel, potato cereal, pumpkin puree, carrot and apple cereal

~~~~~~~~~~~~~ . ~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Besides paying attention to Zaria’s food at home, I’d also been keeping myself busy in the kitchen with some baking and others.

Let the photos say it.
Home baked/cooked goodies

Cup cakes for Zara and her friends; biscotti; ingredient for pesto; and pesto after blending

Every body is kept happy with some home made food.

Zaria’s First Solid – Home made organic cereal

June 24, 2007 at 5:31 pm

Whoosh! 4 more days and Zaria will turn 6months. We let her have her first solid yesterday.

Preparing Zaria's 1st Solid

Soaked rice grain; blending the rice; Zaria all excited in the kitchen; Zaria kept entertained while the cereal was being cooked

Recipe:
1 soup spoon organic brown rice
1 oz breast milk
some water

Soak brown rice for 2 hours
Blend brown rice with water until grains become fine
Cook liquid rice over slow fire, stirring often for about 5~7mins
Stir in Add breast milk and bring to boil.

Yummy Yummy

Yummy Yummy, faster, quick, feed me, feed me!

She loves it! Kept opening her mouth and trying to grab the spoon! Next week, I’ll add quinoa and millet into her cereal.

Happy and Satisfied baby

Me : “Are you happy? Pao pao (Chinese : full) already?” Zaria : *big grin*

Homemade Salted Eggs

June 4, 2007 at 9:47 pm

I stumbled upon a blog entry by a Filipino who’s immigrated to US where she shared the method to make salted egg at home since it’s not easy to get them from where she lives. I wanted to give credit to this person, but I can’t seem to find the link now.

Anyway, after checking out the steps and realised it wasn’t difficult, I was very interested to try it out.

2 weeks ago, when we went to the market, we saw a man selling duck eggs (which was uncommon), and an elderly lady buying the eggs in bulk. I overheard her talking to her companion that she’s in luck as she will be able to make salted duck eggs now instead of salted chicken eggs. I walked forward and chatted with her, checking out her method and confirming the information I saw earlier (from the net) was correct.  So we went on to buy 10 duck eggs and a pack of coarse sea salt home.

Here is how I made them :
Boil a pot of water with coarse sea salt (or any other types of salt) until the water is saturated (no more salt can disolve in the water).
Leave it to cool.
Place the 10 unwashed duck eggs (the elderly lady from the market told me it’s important not to wash the eggs, or the process will fail) into a glass jar (I used the Old Horlicks bottle which can probably hold 20 eggs)
Fill the salt water to the brim of the jar.
Screw on the lid, and leave it aside.

You are supposed to take one out to try at day 14th to check if the egg is salty enough. If it’s not, leave them soaked for another week and pick one more egg to try. Repeat until you are satisfied with the saltiness.

We tried ours yesterday (Day 14th). It was good! Not too salty which is the way I like it, and the yolk is perfectly oranged.

Today, we had 2 more for dinner, steam egg with salted egg yolks. Delicious! (Err, Zara won’t touch the yolk, she’s not a yolk person, so she took only steam egg without the yolk. Suits me, since I love it and I can have her share.)

Homemade Salted Eggs

Maybe I’ll make some organic salted eggs the next round.

Pst, anybody has homemade century egg recipe?

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