Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Creamy Butter Prawns/Nai Yau Har

My mom cooked a lot of traditional dishes for our Chinese New Year reunion dinner and one of them is this prawn dish. She once saw a chef on TV demonstrating a prawn dish using evaporated milk and she cook it for us. We like it a lot but I tweak recipe a bit by adding additional ingredients to it. Many Chinese families like to cook prawns/shrimps, as a prawn in Cantonese is ‘Ha’ which in English means ‘laughter’ and that associate with the idea of happiness and joy all year round. Being Chinese, all the dishes serve during the festive season need to have auspicious name or meaning to it. This is my version of mom’s dish. Finger licking good!!


Sunday, January 27, 2013

Date Rolls

I have a lot of dates left from my Christmas baking and I wanted to use it all up for my Chinese New Year baking. I can’t keep the dates for too long as it tends to get dry real fast so I decided to blend it all up in a food processor and used it as the filling of these rolls. It turns out really good and it will be on the bake list for my next Christmas baking.
Ingredients for the filling:

600 gram dates – I used Medjool dates
¼ cup sesame seeds – toasted
3 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp soft butter
½ tsp cinnamon powder
1 tbsp orange zest
3 tbsp orange juice


Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Lemon Polenta Cookies

These are crunchy, lemony, and buttery cookies. The polenta in these cookies puts them on the crunchy side rather than soft and chewy. Normally I will just shape these rounds but this time I did something different using piping bag. The polenta absorbed the moisture from the mixture pretty fast and toward the end I find it a little bit difficult to pipe. If this happens just add a bit of milk to soften up the mixture up again.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Brown Butter Blueberry Streusel Muffins

Most of us love blueberry muffins. I baked these often as I will always have some fresh or frozen blueberries in my fridge. I will change the recipe a bit here and there from time to time. This time instead of the usual melted butter or oil I added brown butter to it. It took me just a few minutes to brown the butter before adding it to the batter. It gives the muffins a nice nutty and toasty aroma to it. Since we like streusel topping to most of our bakes I added it to these muffins and it taste like a cross between a muffin and coffee cake. They turn out incredibly moist and light, great with morning coffee or tea. I have to refrain myself from eating more than 2 at one go.


Thursday, January 17, 2013

Chili Fish/Ikan Berlada

I don’t normally fried fish at home because of the smell especially during winter where it is too cold for me to open up all the windows and sliding doors to give it some ventilation. Lucky the Asian supermarkets here in California do provide the service of frying fish for you. I will only do that on certain Monday as it is the day where they use new oil for frying (inside secret ha ha) Anyway, I bought two pieces of mackerel or something that look like mackerel to me and had them fried it. When I get home all I have to do is cook the sauce and add in the fried fish. I always like mackerel as it has less bone in it. I adapted this recipe from Sajian Tradisional Negeri Sembilan by Chef Ismail

Monday, January 14, 2013

Pasta Fagioli

I don’t cook a lot of soup but it is always nice to have a bowl or two during winter. This soup was one of the many Italian dishes that I learned from a friend many years ago but I never thought of making it again until my good friend Shereen tasted it at Olive Garden. I told her I know how to make this soup but it might not be exactly the same as the one she tasted but I will try to replica it. So this here is the recipe and hope it is what she is looking for.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Dried Cherry Shortbread Cookies

We love shortbread but I hardly make any because of the high fat content in it. It is so addictive and you can’t stop just having one or two so the best is not to make any of it but I did make some to be given away for Christmas. This way there won’t be much left for our own consumption so we feel less guilty ha ha.. Anyway instead of making plain shortbread I added some dried cherries to it this time. All my friends love these cookies and some of them even asked for the recipe. So here it is.


Monday, January 07, 2013

Chinese Baked BBQ Meat Buns

I made these for Carlos before I left for New York a few months ago. He loves these little BBQ pork buns. When he comes home from work he can just warm it up in the microwave oven and eat it with his salad. These types of buns are very popular at dim sum restaurant or Chinese Bakeries and it is filled with succulent sweet and savory BBQ pork filling. For these buns, I used some leftover BBQ/Char Siew that I made some time ago but you can always buy some BBQ pork from the Asian restaurant here in the US.

For these buns, instead of using my regular Japanese Sweet Bun Dough I used the recipe from Lena’s of Frozen Wings .

Thursday, January 03, 2013

Kimchi Fried Rice

I am not familiar with Korean food except for Korean Pancakes or Hoddeok . All I know is kimchi will be on the dining table in most of the Korean meals. Personally I am not a big fan of Kimchi on its own but it is perfectly tasty when added into fried rice or stew. I made a batch of kimchi and I think it taste much better than the one that I bought from the Asian supermarket.

This batch of fried rice was made from multi-grain rice. I am slowly switching to brown rice or multi-grain rice but giving a cold turkey to the white rice and switching to 100% brown rice is rather difficult so I am doing it slowly ha ha. I still used white rice for my Nasi Lemak or Hainanese Chicken Rice . Here is how they look. There are suppose to have 7 different types of grain like brown rice, black rice, rice bran, split peas, oat, barley and millet in it.

Fried rice is one of those dishes that you can customize and make your own. Really, mostly anything goes and it’s a great way to revitalize that day old rice you have sitting in your fridge. Add some proteins or some greens to it and the meal is done within 20 minutes.