Archive for the 'Thai' Category

Upside down Sundays

Jo’s request for this weekend’s family dinner was Thai themed. Every now and then she gets a craving for Thai food and will request old favourites like pineapple fried rice.

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Surprisingly, this time she felt like pad thai! It’s been a while since I’ve cooked pad thai so this version wasn’t as good as it could be, I didn’t have any crushed peanuts which I feel is so essential in a good pad thai and I ran out of fish sauce!

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Thai green chicken curry which I loaded with lots of vegetables including carrots, eggplant and mushrooms.

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Sunday brunch at Gordon Street Garage in West Perth (opposite Harbour Town). It was my second visit to the much hyped and popular Gordon Street Garage, unfortunately the second visit wasn’t as good as my first. It was a beautiful day and we didn’t have to wait to get a table.

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While service was friendly, they seemed rather flustered with no water offered and a wait for menus and ordering. It was even more disappointing to be told that they had a ‘huge breakfast crowd’ which meant that they could only serve pizzas for the next half and hour (we were there around noon) and the full lunch menu wouldn’t be available.

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Pizzas were not what were were there for so I had a banana muffin instead. It was a sad muffin, not warmed up, dense and dry. I left half my muffin behind :(. Luckily their coffees were fantastic and made up for the lackluster muffin.

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Lamb and sumac and basil pizza. It was just average.. I don’ think I will be returning to Gordon Street again, maybe for a takeaway coffee?

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Our office is on a sugar high and everyone’s been bringing baked goods in so I’ve jumped on the band wagon and have started baking more frequently. This will be my contribution tomorrow, an upside down orange cake drizzled with orange syrup. I couldn’t resist baking it because it is such a pretty cake and I love baking anything orange and made with almond meal. Yummy with vanilla icecream.

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Tristan has had such a bad run with all sorts of illnesses but he is on the mend and was all smiles for his yee yee this weekend. I did miss his smiles and giggles while he was sick so I’m so glad he’s better now.

Jo and HC’s birthday weekend @ Freo

Every year I’m never quite sure what to get HC for his birthday. Usually it always ends up being something fishing related like a boring BCF (that’s boats, camping and fishing haha) gift voucher. But this year I  bought him a fishing weekend by putting him up in the Esplanade hotel in Fremantle for a Saturday night.

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Tristan likes hotel beds a lot haha. He was so tiny and lost in the big bed.

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This is his sweet ‘yes yee yee?’ look. Sigh, melts my heart. I will be giving this kid everything he wants when he grows up. ‘KFC yee yee?’ ‘Yes Tristan.’ ‘More sweets yee yee?’ ‘Yes Tristan’. Kaka’s sunny smile has the same effect on me, sigh.

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After checking in, we went to Cicerello’s for fish and chips.

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Seafood basket to share.

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Seafood chowder which wasn’t fantastic but it was a slightly chilly day so we felt like something warm and creamy.

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After that HC went off for an afternoon of fishing while Jo, Tristan and I shopped and trekked around Freo. It was a fun and relaxing afternoon. I love these coffee topper biscuits which I discovered in London, the London ones are soo much better, just the right thickness half melted by the hot coffee with caramel oozing from the middle. Ah well, beggars can’t be choosers.

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Mummy and Tristan all dressed up and ready to go for dinner at Char Char Bull.

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With so many good restaurants located in Freo, we were really spoilt for choice as to where to go for Jo and HC’s birthday dinner. In the end we settled with Char Char Bull which has a famous reputation for excellent steaks. Sigh, unfortunately, it was a poor choice as the steaks were no where magnificent let alone passable as normal pub food. This was our sirloin steak that came with cognac and mushroom sauce and mash. There wasn’t enough sauce which wasn’t good because the mash itself was already rather dry. The steak was overcooked (we asked for medium rare) and tough, I also disliked the charred bitter bits on the steak, there’s a difference between the smokiness of a chargrilled steak and burnt steak, I think mine was more on the burnt side.

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Jo’s scotch fillet with Sarawak peppercorn sauce and mash. Yes, Sarawak pepper sauce! We were thrilled to see that on the menu, but the pepper didn’t come out overly strong which is a pity. Jo’s steak was the opposite of ours, she had asked for it medium rare too but it came out rare. For around $40 for a steak, we were sorely disappointed. We noticed that the elderly couple next to us weren’t enjoying their steaks too and had a tough time chewing through their steak, he had to order a glass of wine to wash it down even though he already had a beer. Yikes.

On the bright side, the service was very good and staff were very obliging and friendly. Too bad they were let down by the kitchen staff. Sigh, why does it always have to be one or the other in Perth restaurants?

Char Char Bull
44b Mews Road
Fremantle WA
Ph: (08) 9335 7666

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But… despite the not so nice good, we still managed to have a good time!


Walking along the Fremantle jetty at night.

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We didn’t dare to try the desserts at Char Char Bull and dropped by one of the cafes instead. The cakes looked nice but they weren’t good. It was a poor foodie night :(.

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Sunday night lamb roast dinner with roasted vegs and yorkshire puddings. My first go at roast lamb and yorkshire puddings. I was inspired by my sister Jan’s cooking, she cooked a beautiful lamb roast, unfortunately, mine wasn’t as good and my lamb was a bit too rare. Better luck next time. I would also like to have a fluffier and crispier yorkshire pudding next time. We had some lovely purple sweet potatoes (with white flesh) which are so so much better than the gold sweet potatoes when roasted.

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Pretty white chocolate and orange birthday cake. Surely the best part of birthdays haha.

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Another birthday dinner, this time on the day of their real birthdays. Jo requested pineapple fried rice, we ordered some yummy takeaway, R made sharksfin soup and I also made some eggplant parmigiana. An unusual mix but delicious nonetheless.


jo and hc bday

Jo and HC’s first birthday celebrated with baby Tristan! I hope it was a doubly special and happy one with baby with many many more happy memories and wonderful adventures  to come. Happy birthday Jo and HC!

Sunday roast

Jo has been into Thai cuisine lately.
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Anything the pregnant lady likes, the pregnant lady gets. Pad Thai for dinner tonight. I love Pad Thai, it’s a little troublesome to cook because there are so many ingredients involved. But worth the trouble because it’s so tasty.

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This was last week. I was thinking of the family in London, and what I cooked for them. My sister likes stir fried bittergourd with egg, I was hoping to be able to cook it for her on the last day we left, but there was no time :(. But I will cook for them again when I see them in Kuching next year.

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R is a tong (soup) man.This week’s soup is Kiam Chye (salted mustard) Tomato soup but last week it was lean pork, radish and dried squid soup. Lots of flavours especially from the dried squid that was brought back from Kuching.

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Sunday roast chicken with roasted white sweet potatoes (so much better than the gold ones), carrots and pumpkings.

Sigh, and just like that, the weekend is over again…

Day 3 & 4 London: Croydon

Day 3 and 4 was about Croydon which is our neighbouring town,it’s a great place for shopping and best of all, only two train stops away from home!
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Dimsum at Tai Tung. We were there to buy asian ingredients from the oriental supermarket next door. The supermarket was pretty impressive, I think I could survive pretty well in London.


Asian ingredients meant I could cook dinner that night. Dinner had a Japanese theme with tamagoyaki, silken tofu with spring onion and coriander dressing and teriyakic chicken udon. First time cooking for a baby too, Kaka’s dinner was stir fried udon with chicken, carrots and cabbage, basically our teriyaki chicken udon without any seasonying or teriyaki sauce.

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Day 4, shopping at Croydon!

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We had something ‘meaty’ and ‘fishy’ for lunch at Marks and Spencers.

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This was Jan’s fishy meal, fish finger subroll, haha, literally, fish fingers wrapped in a roll. This was actually pretty good.

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Jo and I had our ‘meaty’ cheeseburgers, a recommendation from Jan, succulent and juicy burger.

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Jan and Kaka enjoying the train ride and watching the world rush by. It has been pretty cool watching my sister being a mother, she is a really good mum with very strong arms and good singing, dancing and reading skills haha. As I am typing, she is reading Kaka a story and making lots of cool noises.

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Andy bought us Thai takeaway for dinner. The green curry was yums and everyone drank the last drop with their rice.

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My thai style pork belly and pickles.

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Siew pao for dessert. Only we were too full so they will be having this for breakfast tomorrow. What should I make for dinner tomorrow?

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Andy gave me a lovely present tonight, a Masterchef apron! So now I don’t have to join Masterchef to get one! Hahaha, it’s nice to have lovely brother-in-laws who are appreciative of your cooking :):)


It’s finally starting to feel like autumn! The temperature has dropped below 30 degrees, the air is definitely cooler and I even dug out a light coat to wear during the weekend. While I’m glad that the super hot weather is gone *fingers crossed* there’s something a little gloomy about the darker sky, the quietness and the slight chill. Everything suddenly feels a lot more serious.

red bean

Now that the weather has grown cooler, I’ve started craving hot sweet desserts such as this hong dao sa (red bean soup) with sago and tang yuan, glutinous rice balls. I’m also wanting to make hot tau fufa with ginger but somehow I’ve never been very successful at it. I will try again this winter.


There was lots of leftover rice which I made into Thai pineapple fried rice the next day. What I like about this dish is the myriad of flavours and textures, there’s the slight sour sweetness from the pineapples, the crunch of cashew nuts, the mild curry flavours and the pungent saltiness of fish sauce.


I had a bad tonkatsu over the weekend. I knew my luck with good Japanese restaurants was bound to run out sometime soon (-___-).  The bad tonkatsu however inspired tonight’s dinner of crumbed chicken fillets with generous lashings of japanese mayo and tonkatsu sauce, japanese potato salad and tofu miso soup.

At least Bad Monday is over (^__^).

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.


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.


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.  (^___^).


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.


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

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 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.

Ugly cakes are delish

I didn’t know what to do with our big bag of plums and nectarines that were getting soft so I googled for a plum cake recipe and came up with this Plum and Vanilla tea cake.


The cake turned out really ugly, sunk in the middle with oozing plum and nectarine juice . I couldn’t take a good photo. I thought ‘oh oh… disaster’, then I had a sample bite, and another. The cake was moist and creamy, the topping of the cake was like a  polo bao, sweet, crispy and crumbly. Ugly cakes can be yummy too! I think I might like baking after all.

yellow rice

Lunch bento tomorrow is Thai green curry chicken with turmeric rice! Don’t know what to do with your leftover coconut milk? Add it to your rice cooker (^___^)Y.

Ok, I’m going to get fat and have another slice of cake. Hehe.

The Maze

It’s funny how one can feel so lethargic and listless on Mondays when the weekend was filled with energetic bursts of activities.


Hot milky coffees and buttery crumpets for breakfast are such a nice way to start the weekend.


Then there’s running around and getting lost in the timber maze. My preference was the pine maze which made me feel like I was walking in a scene from wuxia novels. Why two completely directionless people would enjoy getting lost in the maze I have no idea. But it was fun (^__^).


The biggest koalas I have ever seen, and this one was nursing its baby. Followed by rounds of mini golf which was lots of fun, except I am possibly the only person who actually gets worse at each additional round. So much for practice makes perfect. Doesn’t apply to daitaohas.

Then it was Wendy’s birthday bbq on Sunday which was a lovely way to catch up. It’s Gerry’s birthday today, happy birthday if you’re reading my friend!


Back to boring workdays of thinking up sickie excuses and thinking of what to cook for dinner. Tonight it was thai pineapple fried rice and ayam pongteh (chicken and potato stew). I tried being productive tonight and thought I would do a bit of packing, I packed one box of books. Which brings my total number of packages so far to TWO BOXES. Yes, I packed two boxes in two weeks. I am the epitome of procrastination. I know I shall live to regret this.

Anyone want to do my packing for me?

Yellow and orange

I can’t believe it’s only Thursday tomorrow, it’s been a hell of a work week and I feel really quite terrible. Which might explain the amount of baking and cooking I did over the week, for some reason all the cooking turned out in shades of  yellow and orange, cheery colours but I was mostly feeling blue 😦 .


It was also the week that Gerry did a bit of cooking! Both my male housemates are pretty good cooks so I feel safe turning over the kitchen to them when I want a rest. Supper one night was tong sui  (sweet soup) of egg, white fungus, lotus seeds, and lily bulbs, very nice and comforting.


Gerry is also now in a prawn mode, buying kilos of prawns over the weekend. This is his specialty of very garlicky prawns, he wanted to invite Jo and HC over (coz Jo loves his prawns) but unfortunately she couldn’t make it. Don’t worry Jo,still a kilo of prawns left in the fridge!

nasi kuning

Nasi kuning aka yellow rice which is really tumeric spiced coconut milk laden rice, very fragrant and goes well with curry.

pineapple rice

More yellow rice, only this is Thai pineapple rice which I garnished with fish floss shavings.

pineapple beef

The leftover pineapple, I used in my pineapple beef dish, my favourite and food proof stir fried beef dish.


Mini portugese egg tarts made with frozen puff pastry in my mini muffin pan, I should probably have rolled the pastry thinner for more custard filling, I think next time I might make them normal sized, but mini ones are so cute and as Jan puts it, handy to share around with work colleagues.


Some of the pineapple also went towards tonight’s carrot cake muffins, I am learning how to wrap my own muffins with baking paper instead of using muffin wrappers, saves money that way and I am foreseeing lots of cupcake/muffin baking in the future. The carrot cake recipe was pretty good with the muffins chockful with chopped walnuts, shredded carrot and crushed pineapple.


My mum’s famous fried sharksfin dish except mine was fake sharksfin with vermicelli instead. I used lots and lots of bamboo shoots in mine because I love the crunch of bamboo shoots.

I hope I make it to Friday and the weekend. 😦

World Cup and Wii nights with the new housemate

We have inherited oodles of noodles and leftover sauces (not to mention leftover furniture, books and miscellaneous goods) from the movers and goers.

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This was a combination of using up the sauces and noodles, Zha Jiang Mien anyone?


This is what happens when you fall for the “2 cauliflower for $1′ sales pitch and end up with two gigantic cauliflowers that you don’t know what to do with. This baked cauliflower cheese dish used up a whole cauliflower so I was happy.


Friday nights are slowly turning into steak nights.Guess what are the orange bits garnishing the dish ?


Chicken in marsala and onion sauce, I think I might have taken this recipe from the Masterchef book that Wendy sent me.


Gai Yang aka Thai bbq chicken with kailan miso soup for dinner.


The return of the salad lunch bentos! Gai Yang two ways, I used the leftover chicken to toss up a salad made of baby spinach leaves, mandarin oranges and grape tomatoes. Dressing was a bit of the Gai Yang marinade with mandarin juice.


Dessert of vanilla icecream, mandarin slices, banana chips and pan fried bananas scallops (which I pressed in cinnamon sugar before hand). In case you’re wondering why I’m mandarin crazy, well mandarins are in season and mostly, we’ve been given lots of mandarins by Richard’s colleague (= ^^=).

I think my new housemate is settling in. He commented the other night that he’s beginning to get the ‘home’ feeling, I think he’s trying to say that I remind him of his mother, saying ‘where are you going?’ when he grabs his keys and asking ‘when will you be home? will you be home for dinner?’ when he goes out.


Because he works at Mcdonalds part time, he has been bringing home lots of tasty treats. This is not good for my diet (T___T). In case Jo is reading this, do you know they now have Frozen Green Apple?


In 2006, we had a memorable World Cup night when Gerry came back from work and brought a whole stack of Maccas for me and the boys. I particularly remember the three layer Filet-o-Fish he made for me that night and have been teasing him these few years asking him when he’s going to make me another one. Zip four years later, during one of our World Cup watching sessions, he brought home a FOUR layer  filet-o-fish ! I couldn’t conquer it that night but thought about it all day the next day.

I finished it (with some help from Richard). But I felt sick afterwards. Will Gerry bring back a five layer filet-o-fish during the 2014 World Cup? Will I be able to conquer a five layer filet-o-fist? Most importantly, will we still be watching World Cup matches together? I think so (^__^).


Now that World Cup is on a mini hiatus, the boys have been entertaining themselves with the Wii, and I almost cracked a rib last night laughing at their hilarious entics. Even now I can hear odd sounds and grunts emitting from the living room. I think I’ll stroll outside for a laugh.

July 2020