Archive for the 'Soups' Category

It’s so hot you could fry an egg on the sidewalk so Gerry did

I was just thinking that Perth’s summer has been pretty mild this year when the temperature hit 44 degrees today! And it’s still going to be 41 tomorrow (T____T). Arrgh, I hate summer.

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Gerry shared  pictures of him frying an egg on the sidewalk :(. It took him an hour but he had a pretty good sunny side up to show for it.

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Soup when it’s already boiling hot?! Actually it’s ok to have soup as long as the aircon is on full blast. This was a pork rib, white fungus and carrot soup.

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Chicken, mushroom and lap cheong bowl.

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Peking spareribs drizzled with mayo. Very sinful but lots of flavour.

So how is everyone else surviving the summer? The only good thing about summer, I don’t feel guilty about having the aircon on while baking and it’s so much more comfy baking in a cool kitchen!

TGIF …

no longer stands for Thank God It’s Friday because we don’t have TGIF nights anymore 😦

While I’m always glad when Friday rolls around, I’m usually too tired on Friday nights to go out and do anything. So for the past two Friday nights I stayed at home watching Masterclass!

Anyway, nowadays TGIF means thank God it’s family day. For some reason our Sundays(and most Saturdays too) have morphed into family nights where Jo and HC either come over to my house or we go over to theirs for a family dinner. It’s always very relaxing and involves good food, random Australian tv (luckily Masterchef is on nowadays, once we had to resort to watching The Voice *shudder*) and lots of laughter.

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During the week Jo had texted me saying that she was craving pumpkin soup. So I told her we would have a 3P theme for our Sunday dinner, 3P as in Pasta, Pizza and Pumpkin Soup. I made the pumpkin soup and lasagne but Jo and HC brought over the pizza. Of course we knew there would be tons leftover, but hooray for yummy lunch bentos for the next few days.

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Perhaps I should have called it 4P since there was a lot of parsley involved. My parsley patch is flourishing and we’re having to add parsley to all my dishes. I have to admit, parsley chai po(pickled radish) omelette is actually very yummy. This batch of curried pumpkin soup was too light for my liking, my fault coz I didn’t prepare enough cream.

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I think the last time I made lasagne was almost two years back!   I should definitely do it more often, it’s fun and cheesy and Jo loves the meat sauce. Anything for the pregnant lady.

So it’s back to the daily grind tomorrow, I’m wondering what our theme should be for the next TGIF? Oh yes, Jo said it’s kueh chap and poh piah, so Jan, we’re practising for the holiday trip already, hopefully I will have the recipes down to pat by the time we get to London.

You know, Jo got her Australian permanent residency application approved this week. It was a huge sense of relief not just for Jo and HC but for my parents as well. My ah pa told me that he felt as if a stone had been lifted from his heart :). From a completely selfish point of view, I’m so glad that Jo and HC are here to stay. I can’t imagine what life in Perth would be like without both of them being around. Hooray for more family nights to come.

Sunday bulk cooking

Long gone are the days when I cooked different meals everyday. I still remember that I used to decide on the menu depending on what was looking good in the grocer’s on my way home from work. Nowadays, with the long working days and part time student life,  I have *gulp*succumbed to bulk cooking. As in preparing the week’s lunch bentos and dinners in one day. Sundays have now become my study cramming plus bulk cooking days.

bentos

Don’t get me wrong, I still enjoy the cooking process. But I do miss the fun of designing and planning each day’s dish in advance, of buying my ingredients daily and scouting new recipes and lunch bento ideas. I always pack my lunch bento in my little red checked lunch bag that my mum bought for me, it’s just so cute and happy and I do believe in the slogan that that it’s a pleasure to eat lunch.

chicken

So what did I cook today? A whole roast chicken! It was juicy and tender, a large bird enough to go around for a few dinners. 

sweet corn

Also a large pot of sweet corn chicken soup. Despite this being one of my favourite soups, I’ve never actually tried cooking this from scratch and have always had it out of a can or at restaurants. It’s actually super easy to make and obviously much nicer than the Campbell version.  (^___^).

pork

This is my ‘ quick and easy’ category of lunch bentos, stir fried sweet soy pork fillets with tomato and spinach omelet.

pork belly

This one is not so quick and easy but very sinful and tasty for an otherwise terrible work day (haha already predicting my work week in advance). Thai style slow braised pork  belly with mixed vegetables and tofu slices with rice.

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Leftover roast chicken slices with roasted carrots, braised soy half boiled egg and szechuan pickled vegetables with rice. East meets West style lunch bento.
macaroons

I love souvenirs from interstate! Adriano Zumbo’s macarons. I’m not a big fan of macarons and have never been into the macaron craze that’s hitting Perth.
rose
Rose flavoured macaron. These macarons were quite nice and interesting with different flavours, I remember eating a eucalyptus one thinking it was green tea because it was green in colour! I still think the ones that my foodie sis Jan brought over from Paris were much nicer though, I can’t remember where they were from though. Was it Pierre Herme? or Laduree? Jan?

Sigh… and the weekend is over again.

MYOB : Make your own burger

I’ve been off sick and staying at home for the past two days. While it is nice sleeping in, I’m sick of the body aches and the sniffling and can’t wait to get well again. But I can’t say excited about going back to work (T___T).

hongkong kueh

Being at home means I have lots of time on my hands, I should be resting but ended up baking instead. My first attempt at Hongkong Kueh a.k.a. Beehive Cake.

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The cake turned out pretty good, holey enough and chewy texture, I only wish it was more brown. One of the best things about having a mum that is a great cook, she always has plenty of good recipes and tips to share with me (^___^). All my cake recipes are recommended and tried tested by my mum.

wanton

Gerry has been talking about eating dumplings for ages, so finally I made some pork and cabbage wantons for dinner.

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We had the wantons with simple chicken soup.

butter chicken

Calv came over for dinner to help me with my computer problems, the Laptop God fixed my laptop for me and was rewarded with two slices of cake and icecream. We had butter chicken for dinner, a new recipe with evaporated milk, curry leaves, garlic and chilli, it’s very rich and needs to be eaten immediately before the sauce thickens up.

burger

Lately we’ve been having MYOB sessions, it’s fun making your own burgers with fresh salads and thin tomato slices. Ok, back to the bed now, bye!

Tofu and eggs

I reckon I could live on tofu, eggs and fish for at least a month before getting sick of the combination. Healthy and yummy ingredients. I especially wish we could eat more tofu, but believe it or not, tofu is actually quite expensive here! Sadness.

A new recipe, onsen style eggs which I poached in boiling water for 10 minutes, then cracked on top silken tofu with a dressing made of mirin, soy, sugar and dashi soup stock.

With the rest of the tofu, I dusted with light coating of seasoned plain flour and pan fried till crispy with a drizzle of teriyaki sauce. Packed it with oven baked drumsticks, and half boiled egg for our lunch bento the next day.

I’m still going on my slow cooking soup spree, this one was papaya, huai shan, barley and bamboo shoot leaves soup.

Tomorrow I’m going to try cooking soup with pork ribs instead, I bought a whole pack during the weekend, can’t wait!

Learning how to ‘bou tong’

Bou tong meaning slow cook soup or boil soup in Cantonese. I really love Cantonese soups which require hours (ok maybe just 2 hours) of boiling then simmering and reboiling again. I’ve never been very good at it but I’m getting the hang of it now and discovering new ingredients and soups along the way.

Slow boiled chicken soup with carrots, sweet corn, huai shan and dang gui. Herbally flavour but not too strong or bitter with the sweetness of sweet corn and carrots coming through.

Pear, apple, water chestnuts and white fungus soup which could pass for ‘tong sui’ or sweet soup if I added sugar instead of salt. I really like fruit based slow cooked soup and am trying to figure out my favourite combination. So far I like chicken, pear and sweet corn, very nice.

Slow cooked soups are fun and interesting, I have about three different cookbooks just based on soups, so I have lots more to try and discover.

Ok not a soup but also a first timer recipe for me, vegetable croquette which I didn’t deep fry but shallow fried instead, I made them with mashed potato and onions. Drizzled with tonkatsu sauce.

Yesterday’s lunch bento was basil garlic fried rice, ‘yuan’ style pan fried fish fillets with ponzu sauce, tofu steaks (lightly seasoned with garlic, salt, pepper and a dusting of plain flour) and fried eggs with tomato. Why so many things? It was my weekend get rid of stuff in fridge mode.

There was a freak storm in Perth today and it was seriously very scary. Didn’t help that my bus broke down in front of a bus stop so we watched the storm catch up to us and lightning flash and thunder rumble before our eyes. Luckily everyone made it safe ok.

Unfortunately my room wasn’t so lucky. A half shut window meant my room was half flooded and HC greeted me with a mop at the front door and cheerily said ‘bad news! bedroom flooded!’ , Jo’s thunderstorm blown hair was cute though and I couldn’t resist taking a photo.

More thunderstorms predicted tomorrow mornings. Ahh well … every cloud has a silver lining right? Cold weather means more soups!


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