Sunday, November 29, 2009

Bubur Cha Cha

Whenever I see a nice firm Taro/yam in the Asian market I will definitely grab one. Same goes with the sweet potatoes too. There are times I will leave the sweet potatoes on the counter until it goes bad. This time before it has the chance to do so, I made some Bubur Cha Cha out of it.

Bubur Cha Cha is a popular Malaysian and Singapore dessert. This coconut milk soup base dessert flavor with screwpine/pandan leaves is made out of taro, sweet potatoes and chewy tapioca jelly. This super rich dessert can be eaten warm or cold.


2 sweet potatoes - peeled and cut into cubes
½ pound of Taro/yam – peeled ad cut into cubes


2 cup coconut milk
2 cup water
½ tsp salt
130 gram palm sugar/gula Melaka (more or less depend on your taste)
2 screwpine/pandan leaves

For the Chewy Tapioca Jelly

150 gram tapioca starch
50ml boiling water (more or less)
A few drop of green and red food coloring

1. Steam the sweet potatoes and yam/taro separately until soft. Set it aside.
2. To make the colorful tapioca jelly, put the tapioca flour in the mixing bowl. Pour the in the hot water, stir it quickly with a chopstick or fork. Cover it for 5 minutes and then knead it into smooth dough. Divide into 2 equal portions.
3. Mix a portion with a few drop of red coloring and the other with green. Knead well. Roll out the dough into 1/8” thick. Cut into diamond shape.
4. Bring a pot of water to rip boiling. Drop the tapioca jelly into the boiling water. Once it float remove and dip into cold water. Drain and set it aside.
5. For the soup, combined water, pandan leaves and palm sugar. Bring it up to boil. Stir until sugar dissolved. Add in the salt and coconut milk. Bring it up to boil and turn the heat off.
6. Add in the sweet potato, yam/taro and the chewy tapioca jelly. Mix well and serve warm or cold.

Note : For the chewy tapioca if the dough is too soft add a bit more tapioca starch and if the dough is too hard add a bit more hot water.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Thanksgiving Feast

This year like any other year we had a traditional Thanksgiving feast. For Carlos the whole turkey on the table is a must. I did something different on the turkey this year. I dry brined the turkey for 3 days before roasting it. The turkey turns out moist, flavorful and brown beautifully. To learn more about dry brine do check out this website . I have a lot of leftovers so it will be turkey for lunch and dinner for the next few meals :(

Here are some of the pictures of our dinner.

Diana was in charge of the table setting and I think she did a pretty good job with it.

A table full of food. We dined at our small breakfast table since it was just the 3 of us this year.

Perfectly roasted turkey.

Turkey sausage stuffing.

Roasted Potatoes.

Green bean casserole.


I forgot to take a picture of our dessert. I baked a pumpkin pie and an Dutch apple streusel pie. So I just post a picture of me and Carlos ;)

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Herb Roasted Chicken with Honey Glazed

Carlos and I love roast chicken. I like it for the reason that I don’t have to cook the next day as we can have the leftover chicken for sandwich. Roast chicken may seem complicated but it is actually a pretty fast and easy dinner to prepare. All you have to do is season the chicken well and put it in the oven for about an hour 15 minutes (depend on the size of your chicken) the dinner is done. The result is classic, elegant, comforting, and delicious! It also fills your house with a wonderfully satisfying aroma.


1 (2-3 pound) roasting chicken
1 tsp salt
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
3 sprig fresh thyme – finely chopped
3 sprig fresh rosemary – finely chopped
1 lemon, halved
4 cloves garlic – finely chopped
2 tablespoons butter, melted
2 tbsp of honey
Some vegetables like potatoes, carrots, onions, peppers

1. Remove the chicken giblets. Rinse the chicken inside and out. Remove any excess fat and leftover pin feathers and pat the outside dry. Tuck the wing tips under the body of the chicken. For today I roast it butterfly style. To do so, remove the back bones of the chicken with a kitchen scissors. Open the chicken up, and flatten it a bit with your hand.
2. Combined the salt, pepper, garlic, chopped thyme and rosemary together. Rub it all over the chicken. Set it aside to marinate in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours.
3. Before roasting brush the outside of the chicken with the butter and sprinkle again with a bit salt and pepper.
4. Place all the cut vegetables in a roasting pan. Toss with some salt, pepper and drizzle it with some olive oil. Spread around the bottom of the roasting pan and place the chicken on top.
5. Roast the chicken for an hour – 1 hour 30 minutes (depend on the size of the chicken) or until the juices run clear when you cut between a leg and thigh. 10 minutes before the chicken is done, warm the honey in the microwave for 20 second and brush it all over the chicken.
6. Remove the chicken and vegetables to a platter and cover with aluminum foil for about 20 minutes. Slice the chicken onto a platter and serve it with the vegetables.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Petits Pots de Crème au Chocolat

I have so many favorite blogs and one of them is Almost Bourdain . Ellie is a fellow Malaysian living in Australia with great culinary and photography skills. There are so many recipes of hers that I wanted to try out. For today I am making her French dessert called Petits Pots de Crème . Like she suggested I make this dessert with chocolate. This dessert is rich and creamy and not too sweet. Just the way we like it. I might make this again for our Thanksgiving dinner since Diana love Chocolate. Thanks Ellie for sharing this great recipe. Do drop over and check out her wonderful blog.

400 ml milk
3 egg yolks
1 egg
80 g caster sugar
1 tablespoon good cocoa powder
60 grams melted dark chocolate
Raspberries for garnish

1. Preheat the oven to 325 degree F. Put the milk in a saucepan. Add in cocoa powder. Bring the milk just to the boil. Add in the melted chocolate, mix well.
2. Meanwhile, mix together the egg yolks, egg and sugar. Strain the boiling milk over the egg mixture and stir well. Skim off the surface to remove any foam.
3. Ladle into 25 ml ramekins and place in a baking pan. Pour enough hot water into the pan to come halfway up the sides of the ramekins.
4. Bake for 30 minutes, or until the custards are firm to the touch.
5. Leave the ramekins on a wire rack to cool, then refrigerate until ready to serve.
6. Garnish with Raspberries before serving.

Note : I made some slight changes to the dessert. Before serving I sprinkle some raw sugar on the top and put it under the broiler for a couple of minutes.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

My Blog is 3 years old

November 12 came and went without me even noticing that is was my blog 3rd birthday. It’s hard for me to believe that My Kitchen Snippets is 3 years old. Like a child, it started out small and has been growing slowly and gradually every since. When I started this blog I thought that I’d just try my hand in blogging because it seems pretty popular and I wanted to find out more about it, and I thought that it could be fun.. It is not always smooth sailing as they are plenty of hiccups along the way but My Kitchen Snippets goal are still the same. I’ve certainly made new contacts and wonderful friends from this blog and I also enjoy receiving comments and emails from people asking me questions or simply thanking me for my blog which I think is great. I will continue to post my kitchen adventures here to share it with you. Anyway, many thanks to you for your kind support. It’s a good 3 years and let’s hope for 3 more.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

XO Sauce

What is XO sauce? XO sauce is a spicy seafood sauce origin from Hong Kong Cantonese cuisine. It is made from dry scallop; dry shrimps, ham, chilies, shallots and garlic are cooked over medium heat for some time. It’s spicy, salty and sweet and if you’re a chili lover, you’ll find this sauce irresistible. XO sauce is also known as the ‘Caviar of the Orient’ is an essential flavor enhancer and a condiment. Not may people make this sauce as home as it is tedious and time consuming and it is easier to just head out to the Asian supermarket to buy one. I made this because I think it cost too much at the store. A tiny little bottle cost like $6.00. Since I have all the ingredients at home I tried making this at home. This sauce is very versatile. You can use it as dipping sauce or add it into your cooking or just eat it with rice or noodles.

By looking the all the ingredients I am sure you know how this sauce will smell like. I bought an electrical skillet just to cook this outside the deck. I don’t think Carlos can tolerate the pungent smell that will lingers around for days ha ha... I want to cook this sauce for a longer period of time but the smell attracts a huge swarm of flies to the deck and it was freaking me out. So I cut short the cooking time but nevertheless it still taste really good.

I was warming up the XO sauce in the microwave to eat it with my noodles and guess what my husband said. He said it smells so bad that he ran and hides in our computer room and he stays there for hours until the smell disappeared. He said I’ve cooked food that smells funky but this one takes the cake. To me it smells so good just like what his said about his stinky cheese ha ha… Since some of you request for the recipe so here it is. I hope you enjoy cooking and eating this great sauce


10 fresh red chilies
15 dried chilies – soak in hot water
200g dried scallops – soak overnight until soft
2 head of garlic - peeled
10 shallots - peeled
200g dried shrimp – soak in hot water until soft
150g Chinese ham –I used the normal supermarket ham
3 tbsp oyster sauce
2 tbsp sugar
½ tbsp coarsely ground black pepper
Salt to taste

1. Drain scallops, tear them into find shreds, pat it dry on paper towel and set it aside. Drain .dry shrimps and chopped if finely and set it aside.
2. Put the shallots in food processor and chop it finely. Do the same to the garlic too, remove and set it aside.
3. Remove the steam and seeds of the fresh chilies and dry chilies. Chopped it finely in the food processor and set it aside. Next chopped the ham and set it aside.
4. Heat up about a cup of vegetable oil in a frying pan or wok over medium high heat. Add in scallops and frying it until crispy and lightly brown. Remove and set it aside. In the same oil, add in garlic, shallots and dried prawns. Stir constantly and cook until lightly brown.
5. Add in ham, and chilies. Lower down the heat and continue to fry for another 10 minutes. Add more oil if necessary. Stir constantly as it may burn easily.
6. Add in the oyster sauce, sugar, salt and pepper and lastly add in the fried scallops. Continue stir fry until it is completely dry. Remove from heat and let it cool. Transfer to sterile jar and keep in the refrigerator.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Fried Vermicelli with XO Sauce

This is simple fried vermicelli with XO sauce. XO sauce is a spicy seafood sauce. It was developed in the 1980’s in Hong Kong for Cantonese cuisine. This sauce is made from dry scallop, dried shrimp, ham, shallots, garlic, dried chili etc. XO sauce is used as a condiment on the side of main dishes or used in cooking to enhance the flavor. I made some XO sauce the other day and used it to fry vermicelli. XO sauce can be found at most Asian grocery stores shelves. If any of you like the recipe for the XO sauce do let me know and I will post it here.


2 pieces of dry vermicelli/bee hoon – soak in warm water until soft
1 piece chicken breast – sliced thinly and marinate with a bit of soy sauce and pepper
2 cups of Napa cabbage or any veggie of your choice
1 small carrot – julienned
A small onion – slice thinly
2 eggs
3 cloves of garlic
4 tbsp of XO sauce
3 tbsp soy sauce
1 tsp sugar
Salt and pepper to taste
Some green onions for garnish

1. Heat up a wok with a tbsp of oil. Scramble the eggs and remove and set it aside. In the same wok, add in some oil. Stir fry onion and garlic until fragrant and lightly brown.
2. Add in chicken and stir fry until the chicken changes color. Add in the carrot and napa cabbage. Stir fry for a minute.
3. Add in the XO sauce, soy sauce, sugar, salt and pepper. Stir well; add in vermicelli stir until well combined. If it gets too dry, drizzle in some water. Mix well, add in the scramble eggs and continues to stir fry for a few minutes.
4. Dish out and garnish with some green onions. Serve warm.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Coconut Jam Slice

This is an old-fashioned favorite that has a light shortbread like base that is spread with a layer of sweet jam and finished with a crispy coconut topping. It is amazing how a few simple ingredients taste so good and it is great to snack on whenever your sweet tooth strikes.

Ingredients for the base:

1 1/4 cup flour
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
3 tbsp sugar
1 stick/113 gram cold butter – cut into cubes
1 egg yolk

Ingredients for the topping:

1/2 cup of strawberry jam or any jam of your choice
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 tsp salt
2 eggs
1 egg white
3 cups of unsweetened/deciccated coconut
1 tsp of essence vanilla
1 tbsp of corn flour
Juice of a lemon

1. Line a lightly greased square pan with parchment paper, overhang on both side for easy removal later. Pre-heat the oven to 350 degree F.
2. Put flour, baking powder, salt and butter in a food processor, pulse until fine and crumbly. Add in the egg yolk and pulse until the dough comes together. Press the dough into the baking pan.
3. Bake in the over for 15 minutes or until the edges are slightly brown. Let is cool down for 5 minutes, spread it with jam.
4. Prepare the topping. In a mixing bowl combined the eggs, sugar, corn flour, vanilla, lemon juice and salt. Mix until well combined. Stir in the coconut.
5. Spread the coconut mixture over the jam. Press it down with the back of a spoon.
6. Bake for 30-35 minutes or until light golden brown. Let it cool completely before cutting it into pieces.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Kuih Bahulu

This Madeleine like cake is a favorite among many Malaysians. It’s soft and slightly dry texture goes really well with a cup of coffee. We usually baked Kuih Bahulu during the festive seasons like Hari Raya and Chinese New Year. I remember when I was young I used to help my grandmother, mom and aunt made these for CNY but during that time we baked it the traditional way using charcoal fire as we don't have an oven. This little cake comes in many different shapes and sizes.


5 eggs
130 gram sugar
140 gram cake flour
10 gram custard powder or cornflour
½ tsp baking powder
1 tsp essence vanilla
1 tsp lemon zest
3 tbsp of melted butter

1. Sift flour and baking powder and set it aside. Whisk eggs and sugar until white and stiff.
2. Add in vanilla and lemon zest. Turn down the speed of your mixer and slowly add in the flour. Mix until combined. Fold in the melted butter and mix well.
3. Pre-heat oven to 400 degree F and warm up the bahulu mould for 5 minutes. Take it out and brush it with some oil or spray on some non-stick spray.
4. Put about 1 tsp of batter into the mould, bake for 10 minutes or until golden brown.
5. Remove the cakes, and repeat step 4 again until the batter is finish.

Note: Kuih Bahulu keeps well in an airtight container.

Sunday, November 08, 2009

Braised Pork Ribs with Dry Bean Curd

This is very popular home-style Hokkien dish which we called ‘Hong Bak’ or 'Tau Yew Bak'. I learned making this dish from my mother but she normally uses pork rather than ribs. Since I am not a fan of fatty pork I used ribs for this dish. This dish goes really well with rice and it taste even better the next day.

1 pound of ribs
Half packet of dry bean curd stick - cut and soaks in water until soft
1 whole bulb of garlic
2 star anise
5 slices of ginger
2 tbsp of sugar or a few pieces of rock sugar
3 tbsp of oyster sauce
3 tbsp of soy sauce
2 tbsp of black soy sauce
Salt and pepper to taste

1. Marinate the pork with oyster sauce, soy sauce and dark soy sauce. In a heavy pot heat up 3 tbsp of oil. Add in sugar, stir until sugar melted and caramelized. Add in the whole garlic, star anise and ginger. Stir fry until fragrant and lightly brown.
2. Add in ribs, stir-fry until the meat changes color and the liquid almost evaporate. Add enough water to cover the ribs and bring it up to a boil.
3. Lower down the heat and simmer for 20 minutes. Add the dry bean curd stick. Continue to simmer. Remember to stir occasionally to prevent burning at the bottom and even cooking
4. Continue to cook until the ribs is tender. Add in more water if needed.
5. Check seasoning and adjust the taste accordingly. You might need more salt or soy sauce. Serve with warm rice.

Note: You can add hard boiled eggs to this dish. Just boil the eggs, peel and put it into the dish 15 minutes before the dish is done. You can also use pork belly for this dish

Thursday, November 05, 2009

Fettuccine with Saffron Shrimp

This is a really fabulous meal that not only fast to prepare but delicious. By the time you are done boiling the pasta the sauce is done. Doesn’t that sound like a plan for a tasty and sophisticated meal?


½ box of fettuccine pasta
½ pound of shrimp – shelled and devein
2 shallots – sliced thinly
2 cloves garlic – finely chopped
1 cup white wine or chicken stock
1 cup of milk
1 tbsp flour
4 tbsp grated parmesan cheese
2 tbsp snipped fresh chives
A few threads of Saffron – soak in 1/4 cup of hot water
Salt and pepper to taste

1. Bring a pot of water to boil and cook the fettuccine pasta till al dente.
2. In a sauté pan, heat 3 tbsp of olive oil. Sauté shallots and garlic over medium heat until fragrant and lightly brown. Add in the shrimps. Stir until the shrimp changes to light pink color.
3. Sprinkle in the flour, stir and cook for a minute. Add in the white wine or chicken stock. Stir well and bring it up to a boil and sauce thicken. Add in the milk and saffron liquid.
4. Once the sauce is boiling, add in parmesan cheese, salt and pepper to taste.
5. Drain the pasta and toss into the sauce, stir well. Dish out, garnish with some chives and serve warm.

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Pumpkin Bread

Fall is here so it is time for pumpkin. I love pumpkin, either in savory dishes or sweet bread or muffins any time of the year. I got this recipe many years ago from Atlas Restaurant in New York (I am not sure if this restaurant is still around). We were dining there during fall season and after our meal each of us received a little gift bag. In it was a slice of this pumpkin bread with the recipe attached compliments from the chef. How nice is that. So here I am sharing this great recipe with you. The top of the bread is crunchy and the middle is moist and tender. With the holiday season just around the corner it will be great to give it away as gifts.


2 cups of pumpkin puree
1/2 cup of vegetable oil
2 whole eggs
1 egg yolk
1 cup sugar (I used ½ cup brown sugar, ½ sugar)
1 ½ cups flour
1 tsp of baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg


Some brown sugar
Some pumpkin seeds

1. Pre-heat the oven to 350 degree F and greased a loaf pan.
2. Mix pumpkin, oil, whole eggs, egg yolk, sugar and vanilla together. Mix well.
3. In a separate bowl, mix flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt. Mix thoroughly. Add the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients. Mix until well combined.
4. Pour into the loaf pan and sprinkle the top with some brown sugar and pumpkin seeds. Bake for 45 – 50 minutes or until golden brown.

Sunday, November 01, 2009

Spicy Turmeric Beef

Turmeric is one of my favorite spices to use. Besides many health benefits, including anti-inflammatory properties, it makes food taste good and I love the yellow hue it gives a dish. I used it a lot when I cook our Malaysian dishes. One of the dishes I tried out is a recipe from Salt & Turmeric . This dish is cooked on low flame till the water evaporates completely and the beef and potatoes are tender. Delicious!!

Adapted from Salt & Turmeric with minor changes

1lb beef tenderloin, thinly sliced
Water, enough to cover the beef
4 tbsp olive oil
2 small potato, peel and cut into 1” pieces – par-boiled until slightly soft
1 tbsp turmeric powder
1 tbsp sambal Oelek (optional)
1 tsp of dark soy sauce
1 yellow pepper - cut into 1" cube
2 red chilies - cut small
2 cloves of garlic - chopped
2 spring onions - cut into 1" length
Salt, black pepper and sugar to taste

1. Put the beef in a sauté pan or wok and add water enough to cover the beef. Cook until the beef is soft and water has completely evaporates. Stir occasionally.
2. Add in the oil, garlic, potato, sambal oelek and turmeric powder. Turn down the flame, stir regularly until the beef looks crunchy and the potato is soft.
3. Add the bell peppers, salt, pepper and sugar to taste. Continue stirring for 2 minute. Check seasoning, add in the spring onions.
4. Serves with warm white rice.