Monday, December 29, 2008

Bika Ambon

Recipe By Amy Beh

330ml thick coconut milk

100ml lukewarm water

50g plain flour

1 tsp instant yeast

150g rice flour

100g tapioca flour

250g castor sugar

180ml coconut water

5 egg yolks

½ tsp vanilla essence

¾ tsp salt

Put thick coconut milk in a small saucepan and bring to a low boil over very low heat. Remove and leave aside to cool completely.

Combine lukewarm water, flour and instant yeast in a small bowl and leave aside to froth.

Mix both flours, sugar, coconut water, egg yolks, essence and salt in a mixing bowl.

Add fermented yeast mixture and the cooled coconut milk to mix.

Leave mixture aside, covered with a damp tea towel to ferment for 2-3 hours.

Turn batter into a lightly greased tray and bake in preheated oven at 200°C and grill until the top of the cake is golden brown.

Ayam Golek


Ayam Golek

1.5kg chicken

1 tsp salt

200ml thick coconut milk

Ground spices

200g shallots

4 cloves garlic

3 stalks lemon grass

20g galangal

15g ginger

20g fresh turmeric

120g fresh red chillies

1 tsp white peppercorns

1 tsp cumin

2 tsp fennel

Seasoning

1 tsp salt

1 tsp sugar

½ tsp monosodium glutamate

Chop the chicken into 4 quarter pieces and 7score a few diagonal cuts on each piece. Rub with salt.

Combine coconut milk with the ground spice ingredients in a saucepan over a medium low heat. Bring to a low simmering boil. Add seasoning.

Dish out and combine with the chicken pieces. Leave aside to marinate for at least 1-2 hours.

Grill the chicken pieces (for an authentic taste, grill over burning embers) and brush with remaining marinade when grilling, until meat is cooked through and lightly browned.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Vegetarian Soup

Meatless Soup

1 medium-size green radish (cheng lor pak), cut into wedges

1 medium-size carrot, cut into wedges

250-300g burdock, remove the skin and cut into thin slanting slices

4 dried Chinese mushrooms, soaked to soften

200g vegetarian chicken

15 Chinese red dates, seeded

20g kei chi

2 litres water

1 tsp salt or to taste

Bring water to the boil. Add in all the ingredients and simmer over low heat for 1½ hours. Add salt to taste and serve the soup hot.

Prune Muffins

300g plain flour

2 tsp baking powder

105g caster sugar

50g pitted prunes, chopped

15g raisins

2 eggs

105g melted butter

210ml UHT milk

¾ tsp vanilla essence

Grease a 12-hole muffin pan and preheat oven to 200°C.

Combine melted butter, eggs, milk and essence in a small bowl. Put sifted dry ingredients into a mixing bowl. Add prunes and raisins. Pour the butter mixture into the dry ingredients. Mix with a hand whisk until ingredients are well combined.

Spoon batter into the muffin moulds (it will fill only 10 holes). Bake for 25 minutes or until well risen and lightly golden.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Oxtail Soup

Recipe By Amy Beh

Oxtail Soup

600g oxtail, chopped into sizeable pieces
2 litres chicken stock / water
1 whole bulb garlic, unpeeled
40g ginger, lightly bruised
100g onion, quartered
20g galangal, bruised
35g leek, sliced
1 stalk celery, sliced
2 coriander roots
100g carrot, cut into wedges
100g radish, cut into wedges

Ingredients (A)

2 star anise
5 cloves
4cm cinnamon stick
5 cardamoms
1 nutmeg, cracked
1 tsp white peppercorns
1 tsp black peppercorns

Seasoning

1 tsp thick soy sauce
2 tbsp light soy sauce
1 tbsp rock sugar
½ tsp salt or to taste

Garnishing

Chopped coriander leaves and spring onions

Trim off any excess fat from the oxtail and blanch in boiling water for 5-6 minutes. Drain and set aside.

Bring chicken stock or water in a deep pot to a boil. Put in ingredients (A) and simmer for 5-10 minutes.

Add oxtail, garlic, onions, ginger, galangal, leek, celery and coriander roots. Bring to a boil again then reduce the heat and simmer the soup over a gentle low heat for an hour.

Add carrot and radish and continue to simmer for another 30 minutes or until meat is tender. Adjust seasoning to taste and dish out to serve immediately with the garnishing.

Tangy Thai Soup

Recipe by Amy Beh
Tangy Thai Soup

½ a kampong chicken (about 750g), chopped
¼ tsp salt
1 litre coconut milk
5-6 kaffir lime leaves
2 stalks lemongrass, smashed
4cm knob galangal, lightly smashed
10 bird’s eye chillies, lightly smashed
½ tsp white peppercorns
½ tsp black peppercorns
2 shallots, peeled and keep whole
3 coriander roots
100g hon shimeji mushrooms, trimmed
100g abalone mushrooms, torn into pieces
50ml thick coconut milk

Seasoning

3-4 tbsp freshly squeezed lime juice
3 tbsp fish sauce
1 tsp chicken stock granules
1 tbsp Thai tom yam paste

Lightly marinate chicken with salt. Arrange on a heatproof dish and steam over high heat for 15 minutes. Remove and set aside.

Combine coconut milk, lemongrass, galangal, bird’s eye chillies, kaffir lime leaves, shallots, coriander roots, and black and white peppercorns in a pot. Bring to a boil over medium low heat for 10-15 minutes.

Add pre-steamed chicken and the stock to the soup stock. Add all mushrooms, thick coconut milk and seasoning. Stir well and cook for 4-5 minutes. Dish out soup into individual bowls and serve hot.

Stir-fried Pig’s Liver

200g pig’s liver
50g old ginger, sliced
1 tbsp sesame oil
1 tbsp oil
2 stalks spring onion, cut into 4cm sections
100ml water

Marinade (A)

½ tsp salt
½ tsp sugar
1 tbsp ginger juice
½ tsp sesame oil

Sauce (B)

1 tbsp light soy sauce
1 tsp Chinese rice wine
¼ tsp salt
½ tsp sugar
¼ freshly ground black peppercorns

Wash and slice liver into thick slices. Season with marinade (A) and leave aside.

Heat oil and sesame oil in a wok. Fry ginger until fragrant. Add water and stir in combined sauce (B). Cook for 2-3 minutes.

Add marinated liver and stir-fry briskly for about a minute or until liver is cooked through. Splash in a little extra rice wine, then dish out, garnish with spring onion and serve immediately.

Roast Herbed Beef



Roast Beef
1.5-2kg beef fillet

½ tbsp salt
1½ tbsp coarsely cracked black pepper
1 bunch of oregano sprigs
2 bunches marjoram sprigs
Olive oil for brushing

Trim and truss the beef fillet. Brush the meat with olive oil, then roll in the combined salt and black pepper mixture.

Line a baking tray with non-stick parchment paper and arrange the oregano and marjoram sprigson it.

Place the beef fillet over the herbs. Roast in a preheated oven at 200°C for 30-35 minutes or until cooked to your liking. Remove and serve immediately.

Paddy Frog Congee

Recipe by Amy Beh



Paddy frog congee
200g rice, rinsed and drained
2 paddy frogs, cleaned and cut into bite-sized pieces
50g deboned chicken thigh meat, sliced
20g young ginger, shredded
2.5 litres water or chicken stock

Seasoning (A)

½ tsp salt
½ tsp sugar
½ tsp pepper
1 tbsp sesame oil
1 tbsp shallot oil

Seasoning (B)

Dash of pepper
1 tsp light soy sauce or to taste

Garnishing

Chopped spring onion and coriander
2 tbsp finely shredded young ginger

Combine water or chicken stock and rice in a pot. Add ginger and seasoning (A) and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for about an hour or until rice is soft.

Add chicken meat and paddy frogs. Cook for 10-15 minutes or until meat is cooked. Add seasoning (B) to taste. Dish out and serve with garnishing.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Chocolate Mousse

175g dark chocolate, chopped or broken into pieces

1 tbsp Kahlua (liqueur)

4 eggs, separated

200ml whipping cream

Put chocolate into a heat-resistant bowl. Place it over a saucepan of gently simmering water until it melts.

Take off the heat and leave to cool, then stir in the yolks. Whip the cream until soft peaks form, then gently fold the chocolate mixture through the whipped cream.

Whip egg whites until soft peaks form and lightly fold into the chocolate mixture until well combined. Spoon into individual serving dishes and refrigerate until firm.

Ginger Bread

Ginger Bread

175g butter

2 tbsp fresh milk

125g black treacle

210g self-raising flour

½ tsp cinnamon powder

3 eggs (Grade A)

1 egg yolk

110g soft brown sugar

½ tsp vanilla essence

1½ tbsp freshly grated ginger (squeezed for juice)

1 tsp grated lemon rind

Combine butter, milk and black treacle in a non-stick saucepan. Heat over low fire until butter melts.

Sift flour and cinnamon powder into a mixing bowl. Beat eggs, egg yolk, brown sugar and essence until creamy and thick.

Add ginger juice and lemon rind, and stir in butter and treacle mixture and mix until well blended. Stir in flour.

Pour batter into a lightly greased loaf tin and bake in a preheated oven at 180°C for 1 hour or 1 hour and 15-20 minutes or until cooked through.

Cool the ginger bread slightly before turning out onto a wire rack.

Beef Serunding

Ground spices (A)

12 shallots

4 cloves garlic

3 slices ginger

4 slices galangal

1cm knob fresh turmeric

Spices (B) – mixed with a little water into a paste

4 tbsp coriander powder

1 tsp cumin powder

1 tsp pepper

500g topside beef, cubed

100ml water

45g tamarind paste (asam jawa) mixed with 100ml water and squeezed for juice

300g grated coconut (white part only)

6 tbsp oil

Seasoning

1 tbsp salt

3-4 tbsp sugar

1 tbsp palm sugar (gula Melaka), chopped

Put beef cubes, water and 3 tablespoons ground spices (A) and 2 tablespoons of spices (B) in a non-stick saucepan. Cook until meat is tender.

Heat 3 tablespoons oil in a clean saucepan and fry remaining spices (A) and (B) until fragrant. Add seasoning and tamarind juice and fry until aromatic.

Remove saucepan from the heat and stir in grated coconut. Heat remaining oil over a gentle low heat, then add the tamarind coconut mixture and precooked beef.

Fry until the meat is moist and gravy is thick and dry.

Cute Mickey and Minnie Mooncake Biscuits


Golden syrup

1.2kg sugar

1 litre water

1 lime, quartered and squeeze out juice, discard seeds and retain pulp and skin

1 tbsp maltose (mak nga tong)

Put all ingredients, except maltose, in a heavy-based pot. Boil until sugar dissolves. Reduce heat and cook until syrup turns a light golden colour.

Turn off the heat and add maltose. Stir to dissolve and leave to cool completely.

Mooncake biscuit dough

300g superfine flour, sifted

Ingredients (A)

200g golden syrup

¼ tsp bicarbonate of soda

¾ tbsp alkaline water

50g corn oil

Filling

300g lotus seed paste

100g chicken floss

Egg glaze – (combined)

1 egg yolk

1 tsp water

Pinch of salt

A little thick soy sauce (for colour)

Combine ingredients (A) in a mixing bowl. Cover with cling film and leave aside for 5-6 hours. Add sifted superfine flour to ingredients (A) and mix into a dough. Cover with cling film and rest for several hours.

Divide dough into small portions, flatten into a disk and wrap each around a small ball of prepared filling. Lightly dust balls with flour and press into figurine moulds. Knock out moulded dough and place on greased baking trays. Bake in preheated oven at 180°C for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven. Leave to cool slightly. Brush with egg glaze and bake again for another 8-10 minutes or until golden brown.

For the filling: Wrap a little chicken floss in a small portion of lotus seed paste. Press into a small ball.

Mocha Mooncake


150g golden syrup

75g butter

1 tsp instant coffee granules

½ tsp alkaline water

1 tsp coffee paste

225g plain flour

25g cocoa powder

½ tsp bicarbonate of soda

Filling

500g lotus seed paste

350g chocolate lotus paste

50g sultanas

50g chocolate chips

Glaze (lightly beaten)

1 egg yolk

1 tbsp water

Pinch of salt

Combine golden syrup and butter in a small saucepan over a very low and gentle heat. Once the butter dissolves in the golden syrup, take saucepan off the heat. Put instant coffee granules in a fine sieve and use a metal spoon to break up the granules into the hot syrup. Stir well to mix. Leave to cool, then add coffee paste and alkaline water to mix.

Sift flour, cocoa powder and bicarbonate of soda into the cooled coffee syrup mixture. Mix well into a smooth dough. (Do not knead.) Leave aside to rest for 2-3 hours. Divide dough into portions of 40-45g each.

Roll out a portion of the dough into a thin circular piece. Put a piece of filling in the centre and wrap it round. Make sure that the filling is completely sealed.

Lightly dust a wooden mooncake mould with flour and tap out any excess flour. Press the ball of dough into the mould.

Tap out lightly to dislodge the mooncake. Place the mooncake on a greased baking tray. Bake in a preheated oven at 180°C for 10 minutes. Remove the tray from the oven to cool for 6-7 minutes. Brush with glaze and bake for a further 10 minutes.

For the filling: Roll out lotus seed paste on a piece of plastic sheet. Roll out chocolate lotus paste the same size as the lotus paste. Place the chocolate lotus paste on top of the lotus paste. Sprinkle over with sultanas and chocolate chips. Fold in half and sprinkle with another layer of sultanas and chocolate chips. Fold in half again and sprinkle with a few more sultanas and chocolate chips. Fold over again and now there will be several layers. Cut into squares and mould each square into a round ball to be used as filling.

Lotus Seed Paste and Black Sesame Shanghai Mooncake

Shanghai pastry skin

300g superfine flour

40g custard powder

1 tsp baking powder

100g icing sugar

1 egg, lightly beaten

60g shortening

60g butter

Filling

100g black sesame paste

50g peanut butter

½ tsp salt

1 tbsp butter

500g white lotus seed paste

Egg glaze (lightly beaten and strained)

1 egg yolk

Pinch of salt

1 tsp water

Some black and white sesame seeds

Sift flour, custard powder and baking powder into a large mixing bowl. Sift in icing sugar to mix. Add egg. Combine shortening and butter into the mixture and lightly mix in to combine (do not knead) until a soft dough is formed. Leave to rest for 30 minutes.

Divide dough into portions of 60g each, and flatten into disks. Wrap a piece of filling in the centre and shape into a dome. Arrange on greased baking trays.

Bake in a preheated oven at 180°C for 10-15 minutes. Remove the tray and leave aside to rest for 5 minutes. Brush the mooncakes with egg glaze and continue to bake for another 15 minutes.

For the filling: Combine black sesame paste, peanut butter, salt and butter together. Make into very small balls of 25g each. Divide lotus seed paste into 75g each. Wrap a piece of black sesame paste mixture in the centre of the lotus seed paste ball.

Sugee Cake

50g crystalised winter melon strips (tung kwa), finely chopped
50g mixed peel, finely chopped
120g almonds, coarsely chopped
150g sugee (semolina)
100g castor sugar
300g butter, at room temperature
2 tsp vanilla essence
¼ tsp almond essence
50g self-raising flour, sifted
3-4 tbsp brandy
8 egg yolks
2 egg whites

Line 24cm cake tin with greased greaseproof paper.

Beat butter for 5-10 minutes, then add the semolina. Continue to beat for another 8-10 minutes. In another bowl, beat egg yolks and sugar until pale and light. Add this to the butter and semolina mixture. Add in the sifted flour to mixture and stir in essences, tung kwa, mixed peel and almonds.

In a clean mixing bowl, beat the egg whites until stiff, then fold into the cake mixture. Stir in the brandy. Transfer mixture to the prepared cake pan. Bake in a preheated oven at 160°C for about 50-60 minutes or until cooked through when tested with a skewer.

Lemon Flavoured Meringues

180g castor sugar
4 egg whites
1 tbsp cornflour
1 tsp white vinegar
1/8 tsp lemon essence
½ tsp lemon juice

Preheat oven to 150°C.

Beat egg whites with an electric beater until soft peaks form, then add in sugar gradually, beating well after each addition. Sift in the cornflour and fold in the vinegar, lemon juice and essence.

Line baking trays with parchment paper. Shape the mixture into rounds using a small spoon and place them on the parchment paper. Bake meringues in the preheated oven.

Once the tray is placed in the oven, reduce the temperature to 120°C. Bake for about 30-35 minutes. Turn off the heat and leave the meringues to cool in the oven.

Vinegared Flavoured Spareribs

Recipe by Amy Beh




Spare ribs can be prepared in a jiffy.

600g spareribs, chopped
8-10 dried red chillies, cut into sections and seeded

Marinade
½ tsp salt
¾ tsp sugar
1 tsp black vinegar (chit choe)
1 tbsp cornflour
1 tsp Shao Hsing wine
1 egg white

Sauce
1 tbsp light soy sauce
½ tsp thick soy sauce
1 tbsp chilli sauce
1 tbsp tomato sauce
1 tbsp HP sauce
1 tbsp sugar or to taste
2 tbsp black vinegar
1 tsp cornflour
4-5 tbsp water

Season ribs with marinade and leave for several hours, preferably overnight. Deep-fry ribs over medium heat until lightly golden. Remove and drain. Reheat the oil in the wok and fry the ribs for a second time until crispy and golden brown. Dish out and drain well.

Deep-fry chillies until crispy and fragrant. Dish out and set aside.

Heat one tablespoon oil in a clean wok and pour in the combined sauce. Simmer until the sauce thickens. Add pre-fried ribs and dried chillies. Stir well and toss until ribs are coated with the sauce. Serve immediately.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Butterfly Cupcakes

Butterfly Cupcakes

100g butter, softened

90g fine castor sugar

¼ tsp vanilla essence

½ tsp orange essence

2 eggs

150g self-raising flour

¾ tsp baking powder

Butter cream

100g unsalted butter

170g icing sugar, sifted

½ tsp hot water

¼ tsp vanilla essence

Line 15 muffin cups with paper cases and preheat oven to 190°C.

Sift flour and baking powder together and set aside. Cream butter, sugar and essences with an electric hand mixer until pale and creamy. Beat in eggs, one at a time until well combined.

Stir in sifted flour mixture to mix until batter is smooth. Spoon batter into paper cases up to three-quarters full.

Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the cakes are well risen and the top springs back when pressed lightly. Stand cakes in the pan for 10 minutes then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Cut a deep circle on top of each cake and cut each circle in half to make the wings.

To make the butter cream: Put butter in a mixing bowl and beat until creamy. Gradually add the icing sugar and beat until light and fluffy.

Beat in the water and essence. Use a spatula to put some butter cream on to the cake cavity. Position the wings on top then lightly dust with a little icing sugar.

Steamed Cake

Steamed Cake

5 eggs

1 tbsp ovalette

180g castor sugar

200g plain flour

¾ tsp double action baking powder

80ml freshly squeezed orange juice

Grated rind of 1 orange

Line a 20cm bamboo steaming basket with greaseproof paper.

Whisk eggs, ovalette and castor sugar together until light and creamy. Sift in flour and double action baking powder and mix lightly with a metal spoon until well combined.

Add the orange juice gradually and stir in orange rind. Mix into a batter. Pour the batter into prepared bamboo basket. Lightly level the surface of the batter with a spatula. Steam over rapidly boiling water for 15-20 minutes or until the cake is done. Leave the cake to cool completely before cutting into slices.

Yong Tau Foo


Yong Tau Foo
Stuffing Paste

400g lean pork, minced

100g prawn paste

250g fish paste

Seasoning

1 1/8 tsp salt

1 tsp light soy sauce

1½ tsp sugar or to taste

2½ tbsp cornflour

1 egg, lightly beaten

Cut bitter gourd into rings and remove seeds. Cut brinjal into thick slanted pieces and make a slit or cut along the ladies’ fingers then dust the surface of the vegetables with a sprinkling of cornflour.

Combine fish paste, pork mince and prawn paste with the seasoning ingredients. Stuff the paste mixture into the vegetables and lightly coat with the beaten egg.

Heat up your prepared soup stock and blanch each stuffed vegetable in the hot soup stock. Cook until the vegetables are cooked through.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Coca-Cola Chicken


½ a chicken, chopped into bite-sized pieces

5 dried Chinese mushrooms, soaked and halved

5 slices ginger

2 stalks spring onion

1 tbsp rock sugar

125ml light soy sauce

1 can (325ml) Coca-Cola

½ tsp salt

½ tsp sesame oil

Combine chicken, mushrooms, ginger, spring onion, rock sugar and light soy sauce in a saucepan. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 8-10 minutes.

Add Coca-Cola, salt and sesame oil and continue to simmer for 10-15 minutes or until gravy is reduced. Serve immediately.

Spicy Lasagna


200g chicken fillet, minced

60g red capsicum, coarsely chopped

3 tomatoes, skin peeled and pureed

40ml tomato paste

1 tbsp olive oil

¼ tsp ground cumin

½ tsp sweet paprika

1 tsp chopped garlic

50g onion, chopped

10g grated Parmesan cheese

10g grated Cheddar cheese

12 sheets instant lasagna pasta

Heat olive oil in a pan and fry onion, garlic, paprika and cumin. Fry for 4-5 minutes until onion is soft.

Add minced chicken and continue to cook until fragrant. Add capsicum, tomatoes and tomato paste.

Simmer for 20-25 minutes over a gentle low heat. Stir occasionally, to prevent the ingredients sticking to the base of the saucepan, until the sauce is thick.

Place 4 lasagna sheets over the base of an oiled ovenproof pan. Spread with a layer of the minced mixture. Repeat with another layer of lasagna sheets then the minced mixture and a final layer of 4 lasagna sheets. Combine the two cheeses and sprinkle on top.

Bake lasagna, covered with a piece of foil, in a preheated oven at 180°C for 25-30 minutes.

Remove the foil and bake for a further 10 minutes or until lasagna sheets are tender.

Braised Herbal Fish Head and Yam

Original Recipe by Amy Beh


½ portion fish head (garoupa or red snapper), about 800-900g, chopped into sizeable pieces

Oil for deep-frying

½ cup cornflour

2 chicken wings, chopped into bite-sized pieces

5 dried Chinese mushrooms, soaked and halved

300g yam, cubed

10g tong kwai

5-6 slices ginger

1 tsp chopped garlic

1 tsp Shao Hsing wine (optional)

3 stalks spring onion, cut into 3cm lengths

Marinade (combined)

1 tbsp light soy sauce

1 tsp ginger juice

½ tsp pepper

Sauce – (combined)

1 tbsp abalone sauce

1 tbsp oyster sauce

1 tbsp light spy sauce

¾-1 tsp sugar or to taste

1 tsp pepper

1 tsp sesame oil

1 litre chicken stock

Season fish head pieces with combined marinade and leave aside. Just before deep-frying in hot oil coat fish pieces with cornflour. Deep-fry for 4-5 minutes or until lightly golden. Dish out and drain from oil.

Leave 2 tablespoons oil in a wok and fry ginger, garlic and tong kwai slices until fragrant. Put in chicken and mushrooms and sprinkle in wine (optional).

Pour in combined sauce ingredients and bring to the boil. Add yam.

Reduce the heat then cover the saucepan and braise for 15-20 minutes. Put in fish head and continue to braise for 7-8 minutes. Thicken the gravy with cornflour mixture and add spring onion.

Braised Chicken and Beancurd in Fragrant Sauce

Original Recipe by Amy Beh


½ a chicken, chopped into bite-sized pieces

4 pre-fried chicken feet, claws cut off and chopped in two

6 dried Chinese mushrooms, soaked

2 pieces soft beancurd, cubed

1 whole pod garlic with skin on

5 slices ginger

5 dried chillies, soaked

1 star anise

4 cm cinnamon stick

5 cloves

1 tbsp white peppercorns

1 tsp oil

1 tsp sesame oil

Sauce ingredients

700ml fresh chicken stock

2 tbsp oyster sauce

3 tbsp fragrant braising sauce

1 tbsp rock sugar

1 tsp salt

¼ tsp pepper

Lightly sprinkle some cornflour over the beancurd cubes and deep-fry until golden brown. Dish out and put aside.

Heat oil and sesame oil in a wok and fry ginger until fragrant. Add chicken, chicken feet and mushrooms. Stir-fry for a minute. Add combined sauce ingredients and bring to the boil.

Put in garlic, dried chillies, star anise, cinnamon stick, peppercorns and cloves. Cover and simmer over low heat for 30 minutes.

Add beancurd and let it simmer for a further 8-10 minutes. Dish out and serve hot.

Hainanese Lamb Stew

Original Recipe by Amy Beh

600g lamb (use lamb belly), chopped

120g radish

100g carrot

10g cloud ear fungus (wan yee), soaked and shredded

8 dried Chinese mushrooms, soaked and halved

100g ginger, sliced

1 tbsp chopped garlic

1 tbsp Shao Hsing wine (optional)

1 litre fresh chicken stock

Seasoning (A)

2 tbsp light soy sauce

1½ cubes preserved beancurd (lam yee), mashed with a spoon

1 tsp pepper

1 tbsp sesame oil

Ingredients (B)

1 star anise

5cm cinnamon stick

1 nutmeg seed, crushed

3 stalks spring onion (use only white portion)

1½ tbsp preserved soya bean paste (tau cheong), minced

Thickening

1 tsp cornflour mixed with 1 tbsp water

Slice off surplus fat from the lamb. Wash and rinse well. Blanch in boiling hot water for 6-7 minutes then drain well and set aside. Marinate lamb with seasoning (A) for several hours or preferably overnight.

Heat 1-2 tablespoons oil in a pot and sauté chopped garlic, ginger and spring onion until fragrant. Add ingredients (B) and continue to stir-fry until aromatic.

Put in marinated lamb and mushrooms. Fry well to combine. (Add wine at this stage if using.) Pour in fresh chicken stock and bring to the boil. Reduce heat and simmer over medium low heat for about 40-45 minutes.

Add radish, carrot and black fungus. Cover and simmer for another 25-30 minutes or until meat is tender and gravy is reduced. Thicken with cornflour mixture.

Friday, May 2, 2008

Indian-style Curry Chicken

  • 1.5kg chicken
  • 4-5 tbsp oil
  • 1 Bombay onion, sliced
  • 3 green chillies, slit lengthwise
  • 3-4 sprigs curry leaves
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • 6 cloves
  • 4-5cm cinnamon stick
  • 2 stalks lemongrass, crushed
  • 500ml water
  • 350ml thick coconut milk
  • 250g potatoes, peeled and cubed

Spices – mix together

  • 3 tbsp chilli powder
  • ½ tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp coriander powder
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1 tbsp ginger paste

Seasoning

  • Salt to taste

Clean chicken well and chop into 10-12 fairly large pieces. Heat oil in a pot and stir-fry mustard seeds, onion, curry leaves, cinnamon stick, cloves, lemongrass and green chillies until fragrant. Add mixed spices and fry over low heat till oil separates.

Put in chicken to mix and stir in potatoes. Pour in water and cook covered, until chicken and potatoes are cooked through and tender.

Add coconut milk and simmer for about 2-3 minutes. Adjust salt to taste. Dish out to serve.

Fruit and Nut Wholemeal Loaf

Fruit and Nut Wholemeal Loaf

  • 200ml warm water
  • ½ tbsp instant dried yeast
  • 250g high protein flour
  • 50g wholemeal flour
  • 2 tbsp milk powder
  • ½ tsp bread improver
  • 30g castor sugar
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 20g butter
  • 30g walnuts, toasted and coarsely chopped
  • 20g sultanas
Grease a loaf pan lightly with butter.

Sift high protein flour and wholemeal flour onto a piece of greaseproof paper then return husks from the sieve onto the paper. Tip sifted ingredients into the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a dough hook. Stir in sugar, salt, yeast, milk powder and bread improver. Mix in butter, walnuts and sultanas.

Pour water into the flour mixture then turn on the mixer and process for 5 minutes or until the dough is smooth.

Leave the dough in the bowl to rise, cover with a piece of cling film for 30-35 minutes or until doubled in bulk.

Knock the dough down then turn on the mixer for 1-2 minutes. Mix until dough is smooth again.

Remove dough out onto a lightly floured tabletop. Form dough into a long rectangular loaf to fit the prepared pan. Drop dough carefully into the pan.

Place loaf pan in a large oiled plastic bag. Leave aside to rise for about 50-60 minutes or until it doubled in bulk.

Preheat oven to 180°C, then brush the surface of the loaf lightly with fresh milk. Bake for 30-35 minutes until the loaf is golden and the base sounds hollow when tapped.

Wine Chicken

Recipe by Amy Beh


Wine Chicken

  • 1.5-2kg chicken, chopped

Seasoning

  • 1 tsp salt
  • ¾ tsp pepper
  • 2 tbsp corn oil
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic
  • 10 shallots, peeled and kept whole
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tbsp Italian mixed herbs
  • 1 onion, quartered
  • 1 can button mushrooms, halved
  • 200g carrots, cut into wedges
  • 5 red dates, seeded
  • 2 slices of ham, chopped
  • 1 leek (use white portion only), sliced
  • 70g sweet snow peas
  • ½ bottle red wine
  • ½ cup fresh chicken stock

Roux

  • 1½ tbsp plain flour
  • 1½ tbsp corn oil

Lightly marinate chicken with salt and pepper. Heat oil and butter in a saucepan; sauté garlic, shallots, bay leaves and ham until fragrant. Add marinated chicken to mix.

Pour in chicken stock and add the mixed herbs. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and add onion, mushrooms, carrots and red dates. Simmer for 20-25 minutes or until meat is tender.

Pour in red wine and stir well to mix. Add leek and snow peas. Cook for about 5-6 minutes. Add roux to mix.

To prepare roux: Heat oil in a non-stick saucepan. Stir in plain flour to mix. Keep stirring until sauce turns slightly golden. Scoop a ladleful of stock from the main dish and mix with the roux. Keep stirring until a paste is formed. Transfer the roux into the main dish. Stir well until gravy is thick.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Tasty Pumpkin Soup

Original Recipe by Amy Beh

600g pumpkin, peeled and cubed

150g carrot, cut into slices

900ml fresh chicken stock

1-2 tsp whipping cream (optional)

1 tbsp olive oil

1 bay leaf

1 tsp ground cumin

¼ tsp ground nutmeg

¼ tsp chilli powder

Seasoning

Salt and pepper to taste

Freshly ground black pepper

Steam pumpkin and carrot for 15 minutes until soft. Leave to cool slightly then place into a food processor. Add 300-400ml chicken stock and blend into a smooth purée.

Heat olive oil in a saucepan. Add bay leaf. Sauté for a minute. Stir in pumpkin purée and add remaining chicken stock gradually. Add cumin, nutmeg and chilli powder. Stir and bring to a gentle boil.

Once the soup comes to a bubbling boil, add seasoning to taste and turn off the heat. Ladle soup into individual bowls.

Add an extra sprinkle of ground black pepper and stir in whipping cream if desired.

Pumpkin and Yam Rice

Original Recipe by Amy Beh

300g (2 cups) long grain rice, washed and drained

150g yam, diced

200g pumpkin, cubed

Enough oil for deep-frying

1 tbsp chopped ginger

30g mock vegetarian chicken, coarsely chopped

40g dried prawns, soaked and drained

3 dried mushrooms, soaked and diced

1 tbsp oil

1 tbsp sesame oil

600ml fresh chicken stock

Seasoning

½ tsp salt

½ tsp sugar

¼ tsp pepper

1 tbsp light soy sauce

1 tsp oyster sauce

Garnishing

Some coriander leaves

Some chopped spring onions

Deep-fry yam and pumpkin separately for 6-7 minutes. Dish out and set aside.

Heat oil and sesame oil in a wok, stir-fry ginger, dried prawns, vegetarian chicken and diced mushrooms. Add rice and toss briefly for 1-2 minutes. Stir in seasoning to mix.

Transfer rice mixture into an electric rice cooker. Pour in chicken stock and cook. Once rice comes to the boil, add yam and pumpkin and continue to cook until rice is done.

Stand for 10-15 minutes. Dish up and serve with garnishing.

(Note: Net weight of pumpkin paste is 200g after steaming.)

Friday, March 21, 2008

Vegetarian Mutton Curry

  • 300g vegetarian mutton
  • 100g potatoes
  • 60ml thick coconut milk
  • 250ml water
  • 50ml evaporated milk
  • 4-5 tbsp oil

    Ground spice ingredients (A)

  • 4 red chillies, seeded
  • 5 dried chillies, seeded
  • 2cm piece fresh turmeric
  • 4cm ginger
  • 30g galangal
  • 4 candlenuts
  • 1 tsp vegetarian belacan
  • 1 tbsp coriander powder
  • 2 tbsp curry powder

    Spice ingredients (B)

  • 3 cardamoms, smashed and use the seeds only
  • 3cm cinnamon stick
  • 1 star anise
  • 2 sprigs curry leaves

    Seasonings

  • ½-1 tsp salt or to taste
  • ¾-1 tsp sugar or to taste

    Boil potatoes in salted water until done. Drain and peel the skin then cut into cubes.

    Heat oil in a pot and fry ingredients (B) until fragrant. Add ground spice ingredients (A) and continue to fry until oil separates.

    Pour in thick coconut milk and add vegetarian mutton. Stir well. Add water and bring to a simmering boil over a gentle low heat.

    Once it comes to a boil, add the potatoes and evaporated milk. Stir in seasoning to taste, then dish out to serve.

  • Kuih Goyang or Kuih Ros

    Kuih Goyang or Kuih Ros

  • 150ml thick coconut milk
  • 50ml water
  • 85g castor sugar
  • Pinch of salt
  • 100g plain flour
  • 45g rice flour
  • Enough oil for deep-frying

    Combine coconut milk, water, salt and sugar in a mixing bowl. Combine the flours and sift into the bowl. Mix everything gradually together until the sugar dissolves. Strain the mixture to remove any lumps and leave aside to rest for 10-15 minutes.

    Heat oil in a small saucepan and place the kuih ros mould in the hot oil. Remove and dip three-quarters of the mould into the batter. Take it out and put the batter-coated mould into the hot oil, reducing the heat to low. Once the batter is semi-set, slowly release the kuih ros from the mould with a pair of chopsticks.

    Allow the kuih ros to fry in the oil until golden brown. Dish out and drain on several layers of paper towels. Leave them to cool then store in an airtight container.

  • Lor Mai Kai

    Pork-free Lor Mai Kai (Pork-free Steamed Glutinous Rice with Chicken)

  • 400g glutinous rice, rinsed, soaked overnight and drained
  • 600g chicken, chopped into bite-sized pieces
  • 25g dried Chinese mushrooms, soaked and quartered
  • 3 shallots, sliced
  • 3-4 tbsp oil

    Marinade (A)

  • 2 tbsp oyster sauce
  • 1 tbsp light soy sauce
  • ¾ tsp thick soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp ginger juice
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • ¾ tsp sugar
  • ¼ tsp pepper
  • 1 tsp cornflour

    Seasoning (B)

  • 1 tsp salt
  • ¾ tsp thick soy sauce
  • 1 tsp Chinese five spice powder
  • 350-400ml water

    Season chicken and mushrooms with marinade (A) for more than 30 minutes. Steam glutinous rice in a steamer for 40 minutes. Remove and set aside.

    Heat oil in a wok and brown shallots or until fragrant. Add the pre-steamed glutinous rice and seasoning (B). Stir-fry well then pour in water to mix. Cover the wok and cook for 5-10 minutes. Dish out and leave aside.

    In the meantime, lightly grease 5-6 small rice bowls. Place some marinated chicken and mushrooms in the bottom of each bowl. Fill with glutinous rice. Press down with the back of a rice ladle to fill up to three-quarters of the rice bowl.

    Arrange on a steamer and steam lor mai kai over rapid boiling water for 40-45 minutes. Remove and serve immediately.

  • Saturday, February 16, 2008

    ROAST WHOLE CHICKEN LEGS

    Original Recipe By Amy Beh

    4 whole chicken legs (1.2kg)

    1 lemon, grated

    1 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice

    4 cloves garlic, crushed

    2 sprigs fresh rosemary

    2 tbsp olive oil

    A dollop of ghee

    ½ tsp Ajinomoto salt for taste

    ¼ tsp pepper for taste

    Dash of coarsely ground black pepper

    3 tbsp honey

    1 tbsp oyster sauce

    1 tbsp light soy sauce

    Accompaniments

    2 carrots, peeled and sliced lengthwise thinly

    1 sprig rosemary, use leaves only

    Some roasted chestnuts, skinned

    Mix honey, Ajinomoto salt, pepper, garlic, olive oil, lemon juice, oyster sauce, light soy sauce and rosemary.

    Marinate chicken legs in this mixture for several hours or preferably overnight in the refrigerator.

    Arrange the chicken legs on a roasting pan. Add a dollop of ghee. Roast in a preheated oven at 180°C for 15-20 minutes. Baste every 5-10 minutes with remaining marinade.

    Turn chicken, meat side up and add the slices of carrot and remaining marinade and extra rosemary leaves. Toss the vegetables in the pan and continue to roast for 5-8 minutes, basting once halfway through.

    Before serving, pour off excess oil from the pan and arrange the chicken on a serving plate. Sprinkle with extra ground black pepper and add extra Ajinomoto salt and pepper. Serve with the accompaniments.


    STIR-FRIED ASSORTED VEGETABLES WITH FISH AND PRAWNS

    Original Recipe By Amy Beh

    150g garoupa fillet, cubed

    4 medium large prawns, shelled and cubed

    100g chicken fillet, diced

    5 water chestnuts, cubed

    5 button mushrooms, cubed

    40g celery, cubed

    100g carrot, cut into desired shapes, blanched

    4 baby sweet corns, cubed

    1 tbsp young ginger, minced

    1 tbsp sesame oil

    1 tsp oil

    1 tbsp Shao Hsing wine (optional)

    Seasoning (A)

    1 tsp salt

    Dash of monosodium glutamate

    1 tsp corn flour

    1 egg white

    Sauce (B)

    1 tbsp abalone sauce

    ¼ tsp sugar

    ¼ tsp pepper

    1 tsp cornflour

    125ml fresh chicken stock

    Combine fish and prawns with seasoning (A). Mix well then leave aside for 30 minutes. Heat oil and sesame oil in a wok, fry ginger for a while. Add marinated seafood ingredients and cook for 3-4 minutes.

    Add celery, water chestnuts and carrot to mix and stir in sauce ingredients. Bring to a quick boil.

    Splash in Shao Hsing wine if using and add a little more sesame oil to glaze the dish.

    Transfer to a serving plate and serve immediately.

    PRAWN AND SCALLOP OTAK WRAPS

    Original Recipe By Amy Beh

    Spice ingredients

    6 fresh red chillies, seeded

    5 dried red chillies, soaked and seeded

    Prawn and scallop otak wraps
    1.5cm fresh turmeric

    10 shallots

    3 cloves garlic

    2 stalks lemon grass, use white part only

    2cm galangal

    3 candlenuts

    15g belacan, toasted

    Coconut milk custard ingredients

    3 large eggs, lightly beaten

    150ml thick coconut milk (from 1 grated coconut)

    1 tbsp rice flour

    1 tbsp corn flour

    5 kaffir lime leaves, finely shredded

    Seasoning

    ¾ tsp salt

    1 tbsp sugar

    ¾ tsp ikan bilis stock granules

    ¼ tsp pepper

    8 fairly large whole prawns

    8 fresh scallops

    24-25 kadok leaves

    1 banana leaf

    Cut banana leaf into 18cm x 15cm rectangles. Scald the leaves to soften.

    Shell the prawns, leaving tails intact. Make a slit on the back of each prawn and de-vein. Press out flat and open up butterfly style. Set the prawns aside. Blend the spice ingredients in a food processor into a fine paste.

    Combine coconut milk with rice flour, corn flour and seasoning ingredients. Add beaten eggs and kaffir lime leaves. Stir well to mix. Add prawns and scallops to the spiced custard mixture.

    Take a piece of banana leaf, form a box-like shape by folding the sides and secure with bamboo toothpicks or staples. Line the base with two kadok leaves. Put a prawn and a scallop on the kadok leaves and spoon over 2-3 tablespoons of custard mixture; cover with another kadok leaf. Steam the bundles of otak for 12-15 minutes over rapidly boiling water or until custard sets.

    Simple Sponge Cake

    2 eggs

    60g castor sugar

    ½ tsp vanilla essence

    60g self-raising flour

    1 tsp milk

    1 tsp corn oil

    Line and grease base and sides of a 20cm round cake pan. Preheat oven at 190°C. Whisk eggs, sugar and essence until pale and thick. Sift in flour and fold in quickly using a metal spoon. Stir in corn oil and milk to combine.

    Turn batter into a prepared cake pan and bake for 15 minutes or until lightly golden brown. Leave to cool in the pan for 2-3 minutes before turning out to cool completely.

    Carefully peel away the lining paper.


    Assam Fish Curry

    Original Recipe by Amy Beh

    Tantalising dish: Try this Asam Fish Curry, made with ikan kembong.
    1kg mackerel (ikan kembong)

    250g ladies fingers

    1 tomato, quartered

    3 sprigs polygonum leaves (daun kesum)

    4 tbsp tamarind paste (asam jawa) mixed with 500ml water

    1 wild ginger bud, halve and smash stem

    2 pieces dried tamarind skin

    5 tbsp oil

    Ground ingredients

    12 shallots

    8 fresh red chillies

    4 slices galangal

    1cm piece fresh turmeric

    2cm square belacan, toasted

    2 stalks lemon grass

    Seasoning

    ¾-1 tsp salt or to taste

    ½-1 tsp sugar or to taste

    Heat oil in a deep saucepan and sauté ground ingredients and wild ginger bud halves and polygonum leaves until aromatic and the oil rises.

    Add asam jawa juice and bring to the boil. Add ladies fingers, dried tamarind skin and simmer for 8-10 minutes. Put in mackerel and cook for 10 minutes. Add tomato and adjust seasoning to taste. Dish out and serve with hot plain rice immediately.


    Meatless Soup

    Original recipe by amy Beh

    1 medium-size green radish (cheng lor pak), cut into wedges

    1 medium-size carrot, cut into wedges

    250-300g burdock, remove the skin and cut into thin slanting slices

    4 dried Chinese mushrooms, soaked to soften

    200g vegetarian chicken

    15 Chinese red dates, seeded

    20g kei chi

    2 litres water

    1 tsp salt or to taste

    Bring water to the boil. Add in all the ingredients and simmer over low heat for 1½ hours. Add salt to taste and serve the soup hot.

    Nam Yee Spareribs

    Original Recipe By Amy Beh

  • 1kg spareribs, chopped into serving size
  • 3 cubes preserved red beancurd (nam yee)
  • 2 tbsp light soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp water

    Marinade

  • 5-6 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp Shao Hsing wine (optional)
  • 1 tbsp Chinese five spice powder
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • ½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 2 tbsp plain flour
  • 3-4 tsp cornflour
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 egg

    Combine preserved red beancurd, light soy sauce, wine and water in a small bowl. Use a spoon to mash the red beancurd into a paste. Mix with the rest of the marinade ingredients. Add the spareribs and stir well to mix evenly.

    Arrange the marinated spareribs in a large plastic container. Close and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.

    Heat oil in a wok. When the oil is hot, add in the marinated spareribs. Reduce the heat and deep-fry until meat is cooked through, golden brown and tender. Remove the spareribs, reheat the oil again until hot but not smoky. Add in the ribs and allow it to sizzle for a minute. Dish out and drain from oil. Serve immediately.

  • Red Bean Alkaline Dumplings

    Original Recipe By Amy Beh

  • 500g glutinous rice, rinsed and soaked for at least 4 hours
  • 1¼ tsp alkaline water (kan sui)
  • Dried bamboo leaves, boiled till soft and wiped dry

    Red bean paste filling

  • 250g red beans, washed and soaked overnight
  • 200g castor sugar
  • 150ml oil

    To prepare red bean paste

    Comfort food: Have some chocolate cake and brewed coffee to wind down. – Filepic
    Cook beans in a pot of water till soft. Drain off the liquid and blend or process the cooked beans to form a smooth paste.

    Put the bean paste in a non-stick saucepan and cook until dry. Add sugar and stir until sugar dissolves, then add in oil. Stir slowly until the mixture turns into a smooth paste. Remove the paste and allow it to cool completely. Divide the red bean paste to make very small balls.

    For the dumplings

    Mix the glutinous rice with the alkaline water for about 15 minutes.

    Take 2 bamboo leaves and fold into a cone. Put a tablespoon of rice in the cone and add a ball of red bean paste. Cover with more glutinous rice. Shape the cone well and secure with hempstring. Repeat the process to make more dumplings.

    Boil the dumplings in rapidly boiling water for 3½-4 hours. Drain the dumplings well before serving.

  • Poached Pears in Champagne

    Original Recipe By Amy Beh

    4 pears
    1 bottle Champagne
    50g caster sugar
    3cm cinnamon stick
    Rind of 1 lemon, sliced thinly

    Peel, halve and core the pears, leaving the stalk intact.

    Put the Champagne, sugar and cinnamon stick in a saucepan. Stir over medium heat and bring to a boil.

    Add the lemon rind and pears and cover the saucepan with a lid. Simmer over low heat for 15 to 20 minutes or until the pears are tender.

    Take the saucepan off the heat and leave to cool. Transfer the contents to a glass container and refrigerate overnight.

    To serve, put the pears cut side down on a plate and slice from the stalk to the bottom. Press down slightly to fan out the slices.

    Pineapple Chutney

    Original Recipe By Amy Beh

    1 ripe pineapple
    1 onion, cut into wedges
    4 red chillies, halved, seeded and sliced
    500ml water
    2 tbsp oil
    4–5 dried chillies, rinsed and cut into pieces
    2 sprigs curry leaves
    3cm cinnamon stick
    1 star anise
    1 tsp mustard seeds
    1/4 tsp halba seeds

    Ground ingredients

    10 cloves garlic
    2.5cm ginger
    2cm fresh turmeric

    Seasoning

    Salt and sugar to taste
    Pinch of monosodium glutamate

    Slice and core the pineapple, then shred. Combine pineapple, onion, red chillies, ground ingredients and seasoning in a non-stick saucepan. Add water and bring to a boil until pineapple is tender and the gravy is thick.

    Heat oil in a clean saucepan and fry remaining ingredients until fragrant. Pour this into the simmering pineapple mixture. Stir well to combine and cook for five to six minutes.

    Dish out and serve with chapatti or even with plain hot rice.

    Salt Baked Chicken

    Original Recipe by Amy Beh


    1 whole kampung chicken, about 1.5–2kg
    3kg coarse rock salt
    2 large pieces of greaseproof paper

    Seasoning (A)

    1/2 tsp pepper
    1 tbsp Shao Hsing wine

    Herbs

    20g tong sum
    10g tong kwai
    1 tbsp kei chi

    Clean the chicken well and rub the skin and cavity with seasoning (A). Push the herbs into the cavity and use a small toothpick to hold the skin together to close the cavity.

    Wrap the chicken with a double layer of greaseproof paper.

    Stir-fry the coarse salt in a stainless steel wok for four to five minutes until the salt is hot. Make a well in the centre of the salt and put in the chicken parcel. Cover the parcel with the surrounding salt. Close the wok with a tight fitting cover. Cook for 20 minutes over a low heat.

    Remove the parcel and stir-fry the salt again until it is hot. Repeat the cooking process for another 20 minutes over low heat. Remove the parcel and serve immediately.

    Yet Tuen Wor Hei (Togetherness in Happiness)

    Original Recipe by Amy Beh


    300g sea cucumber, sliced

    2 thin slices old ginger

    1 tsp Shao Hsing wine (optional)

    3 pairs pre-fried chicken feet, chopped into halves

    8 dried mushrooms, soaked

    50g dried fish bladder (yi peow), soaked until soft

    3g fatt choy, soaked

    2cm piece young ginger, sliced and cut into desired shapes

    1 tsp chopped garlic

    1 tsp oil

    1 tsp sesame oil

    700ml chicken stock

    Seasoning (A)

    2 tbsp oyster sauce

    1 tbsp light soy sauce

    1/8 tsp salt or to taste

    ¼ tsp pepper

    ½ tsp sugar or to taste

    ¼ tsp thick soy sauce

    1 tbsp Shao Hsing wine (optional)

    Thickening (combined)

    2 tbsp sweet potato starch

    2 tbsp water

    Heat wok and fry sea cucumber with old ginger till fragrant. Splash in a teaspoon Shao Hsing wine, if using. Dish out sea cucumber and discard the ginger.

    Heat a clean wok with oil and sesame oil, add seasoning (A) and put in mushrooms and chicken feet. Stir-fry well. Pour in chicken stock and add sea cucumber.

    Braise for 10 minutes. Remove sea cucumber from wok and add fish bladder and fatt choy. Continue to simmer for 20 minutes.

    Return the sea cucumber to the wok and add thickening to the gravy.

    Chok Shan Guo Teem Nin (A Lovely Sweet New Year)

    Original Recipe by Amy Beh


    1 lohan guo (Buddha’s fruit), broken into pieces

    15g yongsum soe (hair of ginseng roots), rinsed

    15 red Chinese dates, seeded and rinsed

    25g dried longan

    30g chook shan (dried bamboo pith), soaked and both ends trimmed

    50g fresh prepared lotus seeds

    100g rock sugar

    2 litres water

    Combine lohan guo, yong sum soe, dates and water in a cooking pot.

    Bring to a boil then reduce the heat and simmer for 35-40 minutes.

    Add rock sugar, dried longan, bamboo pith, lotus seeds and continue to simmer for15-20 minutes. Serve hot immediately.

    Moon Tei Kam Ngan (Carpetful of Gold and Silver)

    Original Recipe by Amy Beh


    100g presoaked shark’s fin

    100g crabmeat, steamed and shredded

    4 eggs

    2½ tbsp oil

    1½ tbsp sesame oil

    1½ tbsp Shao Hsing wine (optional)

    ½ cup beansprouts, both ends trimmed

    Seasoning (A)

    ½tsp salt or to taste

    ¼ tsp pepper

    ½ tsp sesame oil

    (B)

    300ml water

    2 stalks spring onion

    1 tsp chicken stock granules

    3 thick slices ginger

    Lightly beat the eggs and add seasoning (A). Set aside.

    Combine ingredients (B) in a saucepan and bring to the boil for a minute. Add shark’s fin and boil for 2-3 minutes. Remove spring onion and ginger and drain the shark’s fin well.

    Mix crabmeat with the eggs. Heat oil and sesame oil in a wok until hot, pour in egg and crabmeat mixture. Stir-fry at high heat until almost cooked.

    Add shark’s fin and splash in Shao Hsing wine, if using. Toss well for a while. Dish up and serve with beansprouts.

    Spicy Lala

    Original Recipe by Amy Beh

    300g lala
    1 tbsp oil
    2 stalks curry leaves
    1 tbsp cornflour

    Chopped

    2 cloves garlic
    2 shallots

    Coarsely chopped

    1 tbsp dried prawns
    3-4 bird’s eye chillies

    Seasoning

    1 tbsp oyster sauce
    1 tsp light soy sauce
    ½ tsp sugar
    ¼ tsp pepper
    ½ tsp turmeric powder

    Soak the lala in salted water for 15-20 minutes. Wash and rinse the lala, then drain well on a plastic colander.

    Heat oil in a wok. Fry curry leaves, dried prawns, garlic and shallots until fragrant. Add bird’s eye chillies and continue to fry until aromatic.

    Add seasoning ingredients to mix. Add lala and stir-fry well. Stir in cornflour and fry until all the lala shells open.

    Honey Sauce Char Siu

    Original recipe by Amy Beh

    600g belly pork

    Marinade

    20g oyster sauce
    1½ tsp salt
    1 tbsp light soy sauce
    4 cloves garlic, minced
    1 tsp thick soy sauce
    1 tbsp rose wine (mei kwai loe)
    1 tsp colouring (optional)

    Honey or sugar syrup

    200ml water
    110g malt (mak ngah tong)

    Rinse pork and pat dry completely with several pieces of paper towels. Cut the pork into long strips of 4cm thick. Marinate for several hours, preferably overnight in the refrigerator.

    Cook the syrup ingredients until thick.

    Place the marinated pork in a preheated oven at 170°C. Grill for 12-15 minutes. Remove the meat and turn it over. Pour the syrup over the meat. Increase the heat to 190°C and return the meat to the oven to grill for about 5-6 minutes. Cut the meat into thin serving slices.

    Nuoc Cham



    Vietnamese dip

    Nuoc Cham, a dip with a fish sauce base, can be served with Vietnamese spring rolls.

    3 fresh red chillies, seeded
    2 cloves garlic
    2 limes, squeeze for juice
    2 tbsp grated gula Melaka
    90ml fish sauce
    1 tsp rice wine or vinegar

    Put chillies and garlic in a food processor. Add 2-3 tablespoons lime juice. Process into a coarse paste. Remove, transfer to a glass jar and add sugar, remaining lime juice, fish sauce, and rice wine or vinegar. Stir, then put on the cap and screw tight. Shake until sugar dissolves. (If it is too sour or salty, just add 2-3 tablespoons cold water.) Serve with Vietnamese spring rolls.

    Durian Butter Cake

    Original Recipe By Amy Beh

    180g butter

    175g castor sugar

    100g durian flesh, mashed

    3 eggs

    1/2 tsp vanilla essence

    125g self-raising flour

    60g plain flour

    Grease and line a 20cm round or square cake pan. Preheat oven to 180°C.

    Beat butter and sugar until pale. Add durian and essence. Continue to beat until mixture is light and creamy. Beat in eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.

    Sift both the flours and fold into the butter durian mixture. Stir to mix.

    Turn out batter into prepared cake pan and bake for 40-45 minutes or until the cake is done when tested with a wooden skewer.

    Stir-fried Spicy Balitong

    Stir-fried Spicy Balitong

    300g balitong (sea-snails)

    2- 2½ tbsp oil

    1 tbsp dried prawns, soaked

    Spice ingredients

    1 tbsp chilli paste

    1 shallot

    1 clove garlic

    1 tbsp fish curry powder

    1 tbsp tom yam paste

    Seasoning

    1 tsp sugar

    1/4 tsp salt

    1 tsp ikan bilis stock granules

    1-2 tbsp water

    Blend the spice ingredients in a food processor into a fine paste.

    Blanch sea-snails in boiling water for a minute. Drain. Heat oil in a wok and sauté dried prawns and blended spice ingredients until fragrant.

    Add the sea-snails and fry well to combine. Stir in seasoning and bring to a quick rolling boil. Dish out to serve.

    Thai Pandan Leaf Chicken

    Original Recipe by Amy Beh
    Deep-fried Thai pandan leaf chicken.

    400g chicken drumsticks, chopped into bite-sized pieces

    15 large screwpine leaves (pandan leaves)

    Marinade

    40g shallots

    2 cloves garlic

    2 stalks coriander roots

    2 stalks lemon grass

    3/4 tsp pepper

    1 tbsp oyster sauce

    1 tbsp fish sauce

    1 tbsp sugar

    1 tbsp meat curry powder

    1 tbsp cornflour

    Dipping sauce – (combined)

    4 tbsp Thai sweet chilli sauce

    3 tbsp coarsely ground roasted peanuts

    Combine all marinade ingredients in a food processor and blend into a fine paste. Season chicken with marinade for several hours.

    Take a screwpine leaf and fold into a small cone. Add 2 pieces of marinated chicken and wrap up neatly. Secure well with a sharp toothpick. Deep-fry the pandan leaf chicken over medium heat until the leaf turns light brown.

    Remove and drain from excess oil.

    Serve with the dipping sauce.

    CHICKEN AND CABBAGE SALAD

    Original Recipe by Amy Beh

    1 cup shredded cooked chicken

    ½ cup shredded white cabbage

    ½ cup shredded purple cabbage

    ½ cup shredded carrot

    2 tbsp thinly sliced bird’s eye chillies

    3 shallots, thinly sliced

    2 kaffir lime leaves, finely shredded

    Dressing

    3 limes, squeezed for juice

    1 tbsp rice vinegar

    1 tbsp fish sauce

    1 tbsp chopped garlic

    1 tbsp sesame oil

    1 tbsp sugar or to taste

    Garnishing

    Some mint leaves

    1 tbsp toasted peanuts

    Combine chicken, both cabbages, carrots, bird’s eye chillies, shallots and kaffir lime leaves in a mixing bowl.

    Add combined dressing ingredients and mix well.

    Dish out and serve with garnishing.

    ABALONE LOE SUNG

    Original Recipe by Amy Beh

    1 piece fresh New Zealand abalone, cleaned

    Freshly shredded ingredients (A)

    50g carrot

    70g white radish

    100g yam bean (sengkuang)

    50g unripe green mango

    40g pickled leek (kew tou)

    40g pickled sweetened cucumber

    30g pickled ginger

    30g pickled sweetened red ginger

    3 kaffir lime leaves

    Garnishing (B)

    2 tbsp roasted peanuts, coarsely blended

    2 tbsp toasted sesame seeds

    ½ a small bowl of thinly sliced deep-fried yau char kwai (Chinese cruller)

    ½ a bowl of pomelo pulp

    Dressing (C)

    3 tbsp plum sauce 1 tbsp fish sauce 1 tbsp lemon juice 1½ tbsp sugar or to taste

    Seasoning (D)

    ½ tsp Chinese five spice powder

    1/8 tsp pepper

    Dash of salt

    1 tbsp orange oil

    1 tbsp peanut oil

    Soak shredded carrot and white radish in ice-cold water for a few minutes. Drain and squeeze dry in a piece of clean muslin cloth.

    Lightly blanch abalone in hot water (do not over-boil water as it will destroy the texture of the abalone). Remove and soak in ice-cold water for 10 minutes. Slice the abalone thinly.

    Arrange all shredded ingredients around a serving plate. Add garnishing ingredients.

    Pour dressing sauce over and sprinkle with dressing (C) and seasoning (D). Toss well to mix and serve in individual salad bowls.

    TANGY MANGO AND CUTTLEFISH SALAD

    Original Recipe by Amy Beh

    ½ cup peeled and shredded green mango

    1 green papaya

    3 shallots, thinly sliced

    300g processed cuttlefish, score the inner body and cut into thick slices

    ¼ tsp sugar

    A dash of pepper

    5 bird’s eye chillies, chopped

    2 pickled leeks (kew tou), sliced

    Dressing

    2 tbsp local lime juice

    2 tbsp honey

    2 tbsp Thai chilli sauce

    1 tsp fish sauce

    Garnishing

    1 tbsp deep-fried anchovies

    2 tbsp toasted peanuts

    Spread shredded mango on several layers of absorbent kitchen paper to remove excess moisture.

    Peel the papaya and halve it lengthwise. Remove the seeds and slice off the soft centre. Grate the papaya.

    Lightly season the cuttlefish with sugar and pepper, then scald in boiling water for 40-50 seconds. Drain and set aside.

    Combine all the ingredients in a mixing bowl and add dressing ingredients. Toss well to mix. Add garnishing, then adjust seasoning before serving.

    Tuesday, January 15, 2008

    Stir-Fried Fragrant Brinjal with Tea Leaves & Tea Eggs

    Original Recipes by Amy Beh

    Stir-Fried Fragrant Brinjal with Tea Leaves

    200g brinjals

    2 cloves garlic, chopped

    1 tbsp dried prawns, soaked and coarsely chopped

    Stir-Fried Fragrant Brinjal with Tea Leaves

    2 tbsp sesame oil

    1 red chilli, seeded and diced

    5g Long Jing tea leaves

    100ml boiling hot water

    Seasoning

    1 tbsp oyster sauce

    1 tsp light soy sauce

    1 tsp chicken stock granules

    Pinch of pepper

    Pinch of sugar

    Steep tea leaves in boiling water for 5 minutes. Drain the tea and deep-fry the tea leaves until crispy. Retain the tea stock for use later.

    Cut brinjals into 5cm lengths. Soak in salted water for 1-2 minutes. Drain and pat dry with several pieces of paper kitchen towel. Sprinkle a little cornflour over and deep-fry in hot oil for a minute.

    Heat sesame oil in a wok and sauté garlic and dried prawns until fragrant. Add seasoning and brinjals and cook until the gravy is thick. Put in chilli and the pre-fried crispy tea leaves. Dish out and serve.

    Tea Eggs

    12 hard-boiled eggs, with shells intact

    15g Jasmine tea leaves

    5 slices tong kwai

    12 dried Chinese red dates

    1.5 litres water

    Seasoning

    1 tbsp dark soy sauce

    3 tbsp light soy sauce

    25g rock sugar

    6 star anise

    3g cinnamon stick

    1 tbsp chicken stock granules

    Tap the hard-boiled eggs until the shells are slightly cracked. Put aside.

    Bring red dates, tong kwai, tea leaves and water to the boil in a pot. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 10-15 minutes.

    Pour the contents into a small crockpot. Add seasoning and cook on medium heat for 2 hours. Halfway through,add the cracked eggs and continue to cook until the flavour of the tea stock is absorbed by the eggs.

    Remove and shell the eggs.

    Steamed Chicken with Preserved Olive Leaves

    Original Recipe by Amy Beh

    350g chicken whole legs, chopped

    Steamed Chicken with Preserved Olive Leaves

    2 tbsp preserved olive leaves

    1 red chilli, seeded and shredded

    10g ginger, shredded

    1 tsp sliced shallots

    3g Sui Sin tea leaves, steeped in 100ml boiling hot

    water

    Seasoning

    1 tsp light soy sauce

    1 tbsp oyster sauce

    ½ tsp sesame oil

    Pinch of pepper

    1 tsp sugar

    1 tsp cornflour

    Marinate chicken with seasoning and preserved olive leaves in a heatproof dish for about 30 minutes. Heat oil in a wok and fry shallots and ginger until fragrant and lightly browned.

    Stir shallot crisps and ginger into the marinated chicken mixture. Pour steeped tea together with the soaked tea leaves over the chicken.

    Steam over rapidly boiling water for 20 minutes.

    Braised Red Dates with Chicken in Tea Leaf Sauce

    Original Recipe by Amy Beh

    Braised Red Dates with Chicken in Tea Leaf Sauce

    500g chicken, chopped into bite-size pieces

    2 potatoes, cut into wedges

    7 slices ginger

    2 cloves garlic, smashed

    8 dried Chinese red dates, seeded

    2 tbsp oil

    8g Pu Er tea leaves

    300ml boiling hot water

    Seasoning

    1 tsp sugar or to taste

    ½ tsp salt

    ½ tsp pepper

    ½ tsp sesame oil

    1 tsp chicken stock granules

    1 tsp cornflour

    Marinate chicken with seasoning for 30 minutes and steep tea leaves in hot boiling water for 5-6 minutes.

    Heat oil in a deep saucepan, and sauté garlic and ginger until fragrant. Add in marinated chicken and fry for a while.

    Pour in tea stock and bring to the boil. Add red dates. Reduce the heat and simmer for 20 minutes.

    Put in potatoes and cook until chicken is tender and the gravy is reduced.

    Glutinous Rice Balls

    Lor Mai Chi(Glutinous Rice Balls)

    200g glutinous rice flour

    200g rice flour

    350ml water or just enough

    ½ cup cooked glutinous rice flour (koh fun) for dusting

    Filling (combined)

    100g roasted peanuts, finely pounded

    100g castor sugar

    70g toasted sesame seeds

    Combine glutinous rice flour and rice flour in a mixing bowl. Gradually pour in water to mix into a soft dough. Divide dough into small balls. Flatten each ball to make a hollow in the centre. Add a tablespoon of filling and wrap up to enclose the filling.

    Drop the prepared balls of dough into a pot of boiling water. Cook until the balls float to the surface. Remove and drain well. Toss the balls of dough in cooked glutinous rice flour and serve.

    Grilled Stingray with Dipping Sauce

    Original recipe by Amy Beh

    1kg stingray, cut into 3 slices

    1 large piece banana leaf

    Grilled Stingray.

    Ingredients (A)

    1 tsp turmeric powder

    2 tbsp fish curry powder

    4 shallots, pounded

    1 tbsp salt

    Dipping sauce

    8 shallots, sliced

    5 bird’s eye chillies, finely chopped

    1 red chilli, sliced

    8 calamansi limes, squeezed for juice

    3 tbsp sugar or to taste

    1 tbsp light soy sauce

    1 tbsp dried shrimp paste, toasted

    Clean and cut the stingray, and marinate with combined ingredients (A). Leave aside for 25-30 minutes.

    Wipe the banana leaf clean and brush lightly with oil. Place fish on the leaf and wrap up neatly.

    Heat a flat pan and add a tablespoon of oil. Place the wrapped fish on the pan. Cook each side for 6-7 minutes or until cooked through. For the dipping sauce, combine the ingredients in a bowl and serve with the fish.

    Jellyfish Salad


    120g shredded jellyfish

    150g cucumber

    2 cloves garlic, chopped

    1 tsp sesame oil

    1-2 tbsp toasted sesame seeds

    4 tbsp Thai sweet chilli sauce

    1 tbsp lime juice

    1 tsp light soy sauce

    1 tsp Thai fish sauce

    Wash the shredded jellyfish thoroughly. Blanch in boiling water for less than a minute. Drain and immerse the jellyfish in ice water. Change the water one or two times, and put in the refrigerator for 3-4 hours. Drain the jellyfish and chill well before serving.

    Peel the cucumber and cut into half. Remove the seeds and shred finely.

    Heat sesame oil in a wok and fry the garlic until golden and fragrant. Add chilli sauce, light soy sauce, fish sauce and lime juice. Bring to a low simmering boil. Dish out and leave aside to cool.

    Add jellyfish into the sauce and toss well to mix. Arrange the shredded cucumber on a serving plate and serve with the jellyfish. Sprinkle over with sesame seeds.

    Tuesday, January 1, 2008

    Grape Buttermilk Frappé

    Grape Buttermilk Frappé

    Makes 2 to 4 servings

    Hands-on time: about 10 minutes

    Total preparation time: about 10 minutes plus freezing

    ½ cup white grape juice
    1 cup seedless red or green grapes
    1 cup buttermilk
    1½ to 2 tablespoons sugar or to taste
    ½ teaspoon vanilla extract

    Six to eight hours before preparing, freeze the grape juice in an ice cube tray to make about four cubes. To prepare frappé, combine grapes, buttermilk, 1½ tablespoons sugar, and the vanilla in a blender.

    Blend until very smooth. Add grape juice cubes and blend until smooth. Taste and blend in additional sugar, if necessary. Strain if desired and divide into chilled glasses.

    Grape Crumble

    Grape crumble
    Makes 4 to 6 servings

    Hands-on time: about 15 minutes

    Total preparation time: About 30 minutes

    2 cups seedless red grapes
    2 cups seedless green grapes
    1/3 cup redcurrant jelly
    1/3 cup orange juice
    1 tablespoon cornstarch
    1 to 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
    ¼ cup unbleached all-purpose flour
    1 tablespoon packed light brown sugar
    ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
    ¼ teaspoon salt
    6 tablespoons very cold unsalted butter
    ½ cup rolled oats
    ½ cup coarsely chopped hazelnuts

    Preheat the oven to 190°C. Reserve three tablespoons orange juice. Combine the grapes, jelly, and remaining orange juice in a saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the grapes burst (seven to 10 minutes). Whisk together the reserved orange juice and the cornstarch.

    Add the mixture to the grapes and cook, stirring constantly, until the grape filling boils and thickens, about one minute. Add lemon juice to taste. Transfer the filling to a shallow one-litre baking dish or eight-inch round pan.

    While the filling is cooking, prepare the topping. In a medium bowl, stir together the flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt.

    On a cutting board, thinly slice the butter and chop into tiny pieces; add the butter to the flour mixture and toss to combine. Stir in the oats and hazelnuts and sprinkle the mixture evenly over the grape filling in the baking dish.

    Bake in the centre of the oven for 20 to 25 minutes, until the crust is golden. – Recipes courtesy of California Table Grape Commission


    Banana Raisin Walnut Cupcakes

    Original Recipe by Amy Beh

    Banana Raisin Walnut Cupcakes

    180g butter
    160g castor sugar
    3 eggs
    185g self-raising flour
    ¾ tsp baking powder
    50ml milk
    100g banana, coarsely chopped
    50g walnuts, coarsely chopped
    50g sultanas
    20g chopped walnuts, extra

    Combine and mix well
    12g three-in-one instant coffee mix
    2 tbsp warm water

    Preheat oven to 180°C and line 12 patty tins with paper cases. Sift flour and baking powder into a bowl, and stir in walnuts and sultanas.

    Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs, one at a time. Add coffee mixture and banana.

    Fold in dry ingredients and gradually pour in the milk. Fill paper cases with the batter, up to three-quarters full. Sprinkle the top with extra chopped walnuts.

    Bake for about 20-25 minutes or until well risen and browned.

    Orange Poppy Seed Cupcakes

    Original Recipe by Amy Beh

    Orange Poppy Seed Cupcakes
    175g self-raising flour, sifted
    150g castor sugar
    2 eggs
    100ml freshly squeezed orange juice
    175g butter
    ¼ tsp vanilla essence
    ¼ tsp lemon essence
    1 tbsp Cointreau (orange liqueur), optional
    1 tbsp finely grated orange rind
    30g poppy seeds

    Place paper cases in the muffin tin and preheat oven to 180°C.

    Beat butter, sugar and essence until light and fluffy. Add orange rind, and eggs, one at a time. Continue to beat until light and creamy.

    Fold in sifted ingredients, poppy seeds and enough orange juice, and Cointreau (if using), to get a soft dropping consistency.

    Spoon batter into muffin tins, filling to three-quarters full. Bake for 20-22 minutes or until well risen and firm to the touch.

    More Chips Butter Cheese Cupcakes

    Original Recipe by Amy Beh

    More Chips Butter Cheese Cupcakes
    More Chips Butter Cheese Cupcakes

    100g butter
    80g cream cheese
    150g castor sugar
    ½ tsp vanilla essence
    ½ tsp chocolate emulco
    2 tbsp plain yoghurt
    3 eggs
    45g white chocolate chips
    45g milk chocolate chips
    20g almond nibs

    Sift
    180g self-raising flour
    1/8 tsp salt

    Preheat oven to 180°C, and line patty tins with paper cases.

    Cream butter, cheese and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time. Beat in vanilla essence, chocolate emulco and yoghurt. (If mixture curdles, add a little of the flour.)

    Fold in sifted dry ingredients and white and milk chocolate chips until combined. Spoon batter into each paper case and fill to threequarters full. Sprinkle with almond nibs and extra chips on top.

    Bake for about 25 minutes until well risen or until a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean.