Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Piping hot lamb stew

Another home-cooked recipe from me. Hubby simply loves this dish. I got this recipe from an old friend after tasted her lamb stew for the first time back in December 2012 during a Christmas potluck in my house.

Since then, I cooked few times but never did it in Sibu. Lazy. Lol. But it has been long time since I cooked this lamb stew, so I did it last Sunday.

I have been searching high and low for frozen lambs in supermarkets and almost gave up on the 4th supermarket. Luckily it has lamb shoulder chops there. 

This time round, I did not reduce the stock so my stew was rather watery. However it still tasted nice. ;) It depends on how thick you want your stew to be. 

1kg lamb shanks/lamb shoulder; cut into pieces
1-2 tsp McCormick Mixed Herbs
Few potatoes (4 to 5 pieces), cut into cubes
1 carrot, cut into small pieces
1 big onion, diced
Beef broth, enough to cover the meat
Salt and pepper to taste
Cooking oil

1. Heat up and add cooking oil in the saucepan or saucepot, depends on which you want to use to cook this dish.
2. Brown the meats once the oil is heated up.  Remove the meat.
3. Add in big onion.  Fry for a while before add in potatoes and carrot.
4. Add in the McCormick Mixed Herbs onto the vegetables.  Then add back the meat into the pan or pot.  Add beef broth into the pan or pot.
5. Add salt and pepper to taste.  Cover with lid and turn into lower heat.  Let the meat simmer for 1 to 1.5 hours till the meat is tender. Occasionally check on the broth level and if the meat is still not tender to your preference, add some water to the dish.

Monday, July 21, 2014

More choices @ Good Happiness

They told me to come here for good dim sum and reasonable prices.  It is a big Chinese restaurant.  When you walk in, you feel like you are in a real Chinese restaurant in China for dim sum breakfast. Heard the chef is from China, so I assume that the dim sum is authentic enough. Indeed they have extensive choice of dim sum.

Of course we would never miss in ordering char siew pau when we have dim sum.  Not bad.  Better than what we had here a week ago.
I do not know what this called as hubby ordered all the dim sum.  But the skin tasted like ang gu kueh.  
But the ingredient is mixture of minced meat and prawns.

Hubby tasted its lo mai kai; I did not tasted it.  Never a fan of lo mai kai. 

These steamed minced meats were not to my liking but my son ate a lot of them. It a bit salty, as I think they added salted fish to the mince.

I like the steamed pork rib.  Tender and well marinated. 

The har kau was nice as well. Love the fresh prawns in the translucent skins. 

The kids enjoyed its deep fried calamari, which I thought was so-so. The coating was a bit burnt but the calamari was tender.

The chee cheong fun on the other hand, was too sweet for me. 

Lastly but not least the waiter recommended this seafood porridge.  It was great with the fried seaweed on the top of the porridge.

Overall our breakfast cost around RM60.00, which was cheap; as we have free flow of Chinese tea.  Great breakfast I have to say; we would not mind come back again for dim sum. However the only complaint that I had was flies. Saw few flying on our table while we were eating. I suspected they got in from the kitchen door which was opened for easier access of staff and dim sum trolleys. Otherwise I wonder how flies can be found at an enclosed and air-con restaurant!!

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Weekend Menu #64: The elk-shaped organic Pasta-Algar

Those elk heads remind me of Sven in the "Frozen"!

I got this yummy from Sharon Das more than a week ago and I have been contemplating on what recipe to use for it. Finally I decided to bring out my flip pan for this simple pasta recipe from Munch Ministry.  I adjusted the ingredients to fit my taste and a healthier meal. Add 2 more ingredients to the original recipe, ie potato, and broccoli. Voila!  Here is my version of baked Pasta-Algar with cheese.

Pasta-Algar with egg mix using flip pan recipe (Serves 3-4)

15g melted butter
100g medium sized potato, cut into small cubes (approx. 2 × 2 ×2 cm)
65g  button mushrooms, halved
200g broccoli, cut and use florets only
65g bacon, sliced (Original recipe called for ham but I am not into hams)
3 eggs
1/2 cup full cream milk
100g Pasta-Algar, cooked
15g grated Cheddar (original recipe called for Parmesan but I couldn't find it)

1. In a pot of boiled water, add in the pasta and let it cook till soft or for about 10 minutes. Drain and set aside.

2. Melt butter in a pan. Add in button mushrooms and broccoli and saute for 2 - 3 minutes.  Add in bacon and cook for a minute.

3. Whisk in eggs, milk, salt and pepper to taste in a mixing bowl.  Stir in the pasta, potato, mushroom, broccoli and bacon.
before cooking

4. Heat up the flip pan. Add in the pasta mixture into the flip pan, sprinkle parmesan all over the mixture.  Close and lock the lid.

5. Bake for 10-15 minutes on low heat. Constantly move the pan side to side to prevent charred on bottom.

6. After 10-15 minutes, open up the lid and check whether the pasta has cooked.  If so, then close the lid and flip over the pan and cook for 5 - 10 minutes.

7. Flip back, off the heat and let it set. Dish out to serve.

after cooking and let it sit for a minute

A mouthful of yummylicious bake pasta

If this sound hard, try this simple recipe instead. Just 3 ingredients needed.

Pasta-Algar in alfredo sauce (Serves 1)

Alfredo sauce (4 tbsp), 2 slices of bacons (sliced), Pasta-Algar and olive oil.

1. Heat up 2 tbsp olive oil in pan. Stir fry bacon slices for a minute. Dish out.
2. Cook pasta in boiled water. Add pinch of salt. Cook pasta for about 10 minutes. Drain and place on serving plate.
3. In saucepan, heat up the alfredo sauce for a minute. Keep stirring to avoid burn.
4. Pour sauce on top of basta and bacon. Serve hot!

Friday, July 18, 2014

Bowl of balls

Not any kind of balls but my all time favourite. Fish Balls and Meat Balls!!! I love a good bowl of tasty and springy handmade fishballs and meatballs.

If in Kuching, I would advise you to drive to the old Batu Kawa town (across the Batu Kawa river) for its famous authentic handmade and homemade meat balls. There is one stall I like the most.  It is right next to the small roundabout when you enter the old town.  The stall is a wooden type and it has been there for decades.  Love its bowl of clear soup and meaty balls and they are served with your choices of kolok mee, mihun or kuaw tiaw.

As for fish balls, there is one shop along the road to Bau that serve great fish balls soup. I am not sure of its exact location but I think it is still operating. Remember they are generous with the amount of home made fish balls and nice chilli sauce. My dad brought me once there.

But I am not in Kuching, so I can only dream of those meat balls and fish balls soups for now from miles away!  Must have them when I am back in September!!

My girl posed for me

Many assortment of dim sum

Few nights ago my sil suggested to try out this place as she heard they serve nice fish balls soup. They have dim sum too but that would be another day. For now, we are eyeing their fish balls.

I did not understand why they called this a Tang Hoon Foochow Fishball soup! I thought it was something unique with such name so that was why I ordered in first place. After all, glass noodle was my favourite.

But came out, it was just a plain yong tau fu soup! What so Foochow about it??

The kids shared this stewed chicken noodles which tasted like kampua with soy sauce. I think my sil enjoyed her noodle the most; she had mushroom noodle with a bit of sambal init. This noodle was slightly spicy.

As for the side dishes, we ordered a deep fried chicken fillet, Taiwan sausages and deep fried fish dumplings.

Out of the 3 dishes, the chicken fillet was the most disappointment. Tasteless and hard to bite. Too dry.

I quite enjoyed the sausages although I tasted a better one before.

The fish dumplings were alright; a bit too salty as they added too much seasoning I think. I can see the seasoning on the serving plate!

Saw many customers ordered its dim sum so I guess the dim sum is better than the fish noodles. Hmm, look like the dim sum is the main attraction here. Hope they tasted better than what we had. That will be another food adventure in another day!

The fish balls here? Cannot beat the one in Kuching! Sigh!

Thursday, July 17, 2014

What's in Taiwan-chi

Went out for dinner the whole week this week as hubby is travelling again. Lazy to cook so together with my sil and kids, we were on food hunting around Sibu.

Went to new place to try new food. There were many eating places around and I have not yet try most of them. Some reviews were good and some not. So if anyone said this place is alright and so-so, we do not mind give it a shot!

Heard from a friend that this place was not bad and staff was friendly as well. This eatery is opposite to my favourite seafood restaurant, Hong Fu. This eatery is not hard to miss with its catchy lightbox signage.

 When think of Taiwanese food, one would associate it with beef noodle and street food. The setting of Taiwan Chi is simple. We opted to sit on this low bench. Easier for the kids.

The menu on the wall

We did not ordered beef noodle but my bil would came later tried its beef noodle. That time I have left earlier with my kids so no food review on beef noodle.

My kids and I had its minced potk noodle each. It tasted alright to me; the noodle texture was springy and mince was sweet. It is more like stewed pork mince noodle to me.

My sil had its special sweet sauce noodle which I do not like. The sauce taste sweet for me. However I like the presentation of this noodle as it served in a hot plate with a board beneath it.

For the side dish, we ordered the seaweed, which was supposed to be good to be eaten. It has anti-cancer properties. But we did like this seaweed here. A bit mushy.

I ordered this basket of fried oyster and I enjoyed it very much. A bit salty though, maybe they add too much seasoning but still it tasted good with those fried curry leaves.

And we also had this fried dumplings (gyoza). Not bad I have to say.

Overall the food was so-so and indeed the staff was friendly. At least I have tasted the food here. I would not be going back anytime soon. Nothing much attract me here.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Fried vermicelli ala Chinese

I had some leftover pasta vermicelli at home, so I decided to finish them up before they spoilt. This time I cooked it in simple Chinese stir-fried style. The verdict?

Delicious, I have to admit myself! Of course the texture of vermicelli is different from the normal noodles we used in Chinese cooking. However it went well and I actually enjoyed my vermicelli this way. I used simple ingredients which normally found in Chinese noodles.

Hope you guys enjoy this fried pasta vermicelli.

100g Pasta Vermicelli
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1/2 big onion, sliced
100g broccoli, cut in smaller florets and cooked in boiled water to soften
100g organic small tomatoes or cherry tomatoes, halved
Chicken meat, sliced

Marinade for chicken:
2 tbsp dark soy sauce, 1 tbsp Maggi chili sauce and pinch of salt

1. Throw the vermicelli in a pot of boiled water, added with 1tsp corn cooking oil and pinch of salt. Cook for 5 minutes. Drain and set aside.
2. Marinate chicken for 30 minutes.
3. In a wok, add in 2 tbsp corn cooking oil. When heated up, add garlic and saute till fragrant. Add in onion and saute for 1 minute before add broccoli and tomatoes. Add pinch of salt to taste.
4. Add the marinated chicken and mix well. Cook till chicken is cooked and then add in the pasta. Mix well so pasta covered in the sauce.
5. Add salt to taste. Serve.

I like the salty with a bit of chili taste in my pasta. A plate of yum yum!

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Liebster Award from Azura

Sorry Azura for taking so long to post this up. When the last time I receive an award?? It was back in August 2012. Yeap, almost 2 years ago.

This Liebster award is interesting in a sense you have to answer a set of 10 questions set by the person that nominated you. I don't mind doing the questions but I have to break the rules here. I am not going to pass on the award, nominate anyone or set new questions. Super lazy to crack my head thinking of new questions. Hehehe. 

So, here are the Q&A:

1. What is your latest addiction?

Currently hooked to my novel, The Devil's Star by Jo Nesbo

2. What is your favorite pizza topping?

Pepperoni with lots of cheese!

3. Book that you read more than two times?

The Rake and His Lady. 

4. Do you take the shampoos and conditioner bottles from hotel?

I don't but my hubby do. That includes tea, coffee, creamer and sugar packets! Lol. I still cannot get him to quit this habit.

5. Sing in the car?

Sometimes.  Depend on what the radio is playing...

6. Do you still watch cartoons?

Once a while with my kids

7. Do you have any pet peeves? 

Yes, the drivers who takes their sweet times to turn to a lane or never bother to signal before turning!

8. Occupations you wanted to be when you were a kid?

I guess most kids would always wanted to be a teacher when they grow up.  I dreamt of being a teacher when I were younger. Next was an actress. ;)

9. When is the last time you updated your blog?

Yesterday!! Tried to update daily if possible. 

10. Last letter/piece of mail you received besides junk or a bill? 

A pleasant surprise from Sharon Das last Saturday

Thanks again Azura for the award and questions.  Now you know more about me, right?