Wednesday, January 28, 2009

I Need To Digest!!

I was planning to do a food post today but the sight of food is making me feel nausea. Yes, that is the result of overeating. Although my tummy is bloating and my brain screaming for me to stop stuffing myself, I just couldn't stop myself from munching tidbits and drowning myself with iced cold Coke.

Since am not in the mood for food, at least at this moment, I decided to show off some of Hubby's fruit of labour. Our Japanese Cucumber plant is growing very well and have produced 3 large cucumbers to date and more to come. Crunchy and wonder why, this is the sweetest and tastiest cucumber I ever tasted!! Hahaha..bias right?
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Tomatoes in season? Our cherry tomato plants are producing lots of fruits too. Red and juicy, best eaten after being chilled in the fridge. Yumz yumz! (Am thinking of going to my garden to harvest some after posting this up!) By the way, those are Thai Basil in the background.
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Lastly, our asparagus plant. So far, only one tiny shoot came up but I managed to strike a deal with Hubby. I will eat the first shoot while he will have the next one, if there is any. Hahaha!!
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I decided to try my luck and planted some Hong Kong Choy Sam and Hong Kong Kailan. Yet to see any result but I will keep you posted on my progress. Wish me luck!! Now, time to go to grab some cherry tomatoes and catch a nap before feasing again tonight..yawnn..

Monday, January 26, 2009

HAPPY MOO MOO YEAR

Am very stuffed. 2 scrumptious reunion dinners in 2 days. Chinese New Year is here again! Good excuse to stuff myself with food, food and more food, oh not forgetting overdosing myself with high glucose drinks.

The feast I cooked for my first reunion dinner at home yesterday, there will be a separate post on this later.
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Taking the opportunity here to wish all my readers a very Happy Chinese New Year. May the year of Moo Moo brings you good luck, good health, lots of wealth, lots of joy and lots and lots of happiness.

Monday, January 19, 2009

PEA'S CHAR SIU AKA BBQ PORK

I had these for dinner last Friday. Succulent Char Siu fresh from the oven! Made from top quality pork belly, 6 layers to be exact; fat, meat, fat, meat, fat and meat!!
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After the failed attempt using the recipe book I bought, I decided to whip up my own marinade sauce. Using a bowl, I poured in some oyster sauce, soya sauce, fish sauce, crushed garlic, rose wine, lots of dark soy sauce and lots and lots of sugar. I don't have the exact measurement here cos I used my own judgment. Actually I didn't expect it would turn out so well, that's the reason why I never bother to jot it down. *Kicking myself* But it is easy to come up with the concoction as all you have to do is to keep tasting the sauce till you achieve a sweetish savourish taste. I marinated it in the chiller for 2 days and that makes a lot of difference too.
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It turned out unexpectedly well. The outer layer was coated with caramelized sugar; crispy yet not too sweet and it doesn't have the crystalized sugar sticking to your teeth like some places do. It was cooked just right! It was tender and the pork juices was oozing out when I cut it. Two long strips finished off at one go, Hubby enjoyed it tremendously. I do have another Char Siu recipe to try. The recipe was given during my dim sum cooking class. If that is successful as well, I will share the recipe here.
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By the way, notice the watermark in my photos?? Before I even start begging around for help, I received an email from Criz Lai last Friday with complete instructions on how to do watermark and where to download a free software. He even took effort to design a lovely watermark logo for me, exactly how I wanted it to be as well!!! That is SOOOO sweet of him. Am so touched, thank you so much Criz! Owe you a meal when you come to KL yah?

Friday, January 16, 2009

A DREAM DATE @ MEATY HOUSE, USJ TAIPAN

"What would you do if you strike a RM20million jackpot?"

Dream, dream, dream...that was basically what we dreamt off on our first date. Previously known as MochaSourCream in the blogosphere, she now officially has a new name, thanks to me! I met RM20milBABE through my blog and eventually we ended up chatting online almost daily. Chatting with her always put a wide smile on my face. She is forever cheerful, chirpy and ahem, at most time crazy. She taught me a lot of stuff too. She was the one who taught me about Sports Toto RM20million jackpot and ways to buy the numbers. She was the one who taught me the "law of attraction". She said if you visualize on achieving something you desire, you will eventually achieve it. Now am using the law of attraction to win the RM20million jackpot. (Psstt...WOMAN, yes you! It isn't working lah!!!!)
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We finally decided to meet for dinner and Meaty House in USJ Taipan was the chosen venue. I used to patron their outlet in Damansara Utama but was told that due to parking problem, they decided to close that outlet. The USJ outlet is located just a few doors away from Starbucks. The moment you enter the shop, you would have thought you entered a pork deli! I was told that they owned a pigs farm and produce sausages, hams, bacons and pork-related products to Tesco and if not mistaken, Giant too. Yes, all these are available for sale here. I have been buying Meaty products for quite some time now and do try their Garlic infused Taiwanese Sausage..good stuff!!
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(picture courtesy of RM20milBabe)

Despite meeting each other for the first time, we immediately warmed up and starting yakking and laughing away. To quench our thirst, we each had a glass of Iced Barley Lime (RM3.80).
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Am quite impressed with their menu. They have all the familiar dishes I used to have in their DU outlet as well as a few new ones. We started off sharing a bowl of my all-time favourite soup; Cream of Ham and Bacon served with a slice of toasted garlic bread (RM3.90). Smooth and creamy with tasty bacon bits, very tasty. This soup is slightly saltish because of the bacon but for pork lovers, I strongly recommend this.
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(picture courtesy of RM20milBabe)

For the mains, we ordered two dishes to share. The Ribs and Sausages Platter (RM26.80) came with two medium-sized grilled ribs and 2 chunky German sausages served with two side dishes; salad and ermm..mushroom if I remember correctly. The pork ribs were not too bad. Well marinated and tender. The sausages were good too; firm and bouncy!
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(picture courtesy of RM20milBabe)

Between the two main dishes we ordered, I would strongly recommend the Grilled Pork Belly (RM23.80), if you like fatty pork that is! Our plate came with 5 big pieces of sliced pork belly and 3 side dishes such as coleslaw, potato salad and boiled potatoes. We were in love with the pork belly which was perfectly balanced with the multi-layer of fats and meat. Very well marinated as the meat fully absorbed all the flavour. Very nice artery clogging dish!!
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(picture courtesy of RM20milBabe)

After the wonderful meal, we continued to envision ourself being RM20 million richer and how the money would be spent, which charity to donate to, what would be our first meal after being a millionaire and etc....We laughed so hard, my jaw actually ached a little the next day. But I guess, as long as I don't kick myself to buy a ticket, this will only continue to be a dream. So the answer is NO! We are not hardcore gambler cos we only dream of winning without actually betting.

Oh well....we were definitely poorer by RM68.31 after this meal but we have a priceless time together.
There are many dishes here that I would love to try, such as the Crispy German Knuckle that smell so good when the waiter holding it walked pass our table. For porky fans, do try Meaty House which is located at:

37 Jalan USJ 10/1D
Taipan Triangle, Subang
Tel: 03-5633.5634

RM20milBABE! Nice knowing you and thanks for all the photos!! Meet up again soon for another crazy session yah?

Thursday, January 15, 2009

MY TENJI POST GOT HIJACKED!

I couldn't believe the post on my dining experience at Tenji Japanese Buffet Restaurant could create so much controversies. Some of you might have already receive an email and it might be more than once, about Tenji with lots of photos. Yes, it was all taken or shall I said COPIED from my blog. The email has been widely circulated, so much so a friend told me it reached her relatives in Hong Kong and Australia. Just yesterday night, I was chatting with a lady from Shantou, China who added me into MSN after reading my Tenji post. I received the email too, 4 times as well as numerous phone calls from blogger friends who alerted me on this matter. One was forwarded to me from an executive in my office and I made my colleagues who are aware of my blog to keep quiet about it. My best friend also forwarded to me the email. Unaware it was from my blog, she actually suggested that we give this place a try!!

Some of my dear readers who recognize my work emailed to me after discovering several bloggers who took my pictures and wordings and post it up like their own. Of course I was very upset but they have been very cooperative and all agreed to link back to the source. Thank you guys!

But I just couldn't believe how a national paper could simply put up photos that doesn't belong to them in their paper. They took two photos from my Tenji post; Sushi and Crabs. A friend of mine said, "Maybe they got it from the email and is unaware of the source". Possible but definitely not a good reason. My principle is "IF IT'S NOT YOURS, DON'T TAKE. IF YOU WANT TO TAKE, ASK FIRST". I sent an email to them but of course I don't expect that they will even bother to reply! (true enough, they did not respond!)
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Copycats...miaooooo!!!
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Well, not exactly everything bad, but one thing for sure, my post on Tenji increased my traffic tremendously! Never before I have more than 100 comments in one single post. And not forgetting all the new friends I met in MSN from around the world.

One thing for sure, I have to seriously considering putting watermark on my photos. Not that it's worth a lot or anything great but it is still my property. Sigh..more work from now on.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

BABY SEAFOOD @ BATU BELAH, KLANG

Makan Gang was at my place last weekend. Not knowing where and what to eat for dinner, Baby Seafood came to mind. Located just 10 minutes drive away from my house, this gem was discovered when we moved to Setia Alam a year ago. They serves very good food at very reasonable price but I only patroned this place twice. It was the crowd that turned me away. Each time we pass by the restaurant, I could see people standing outside waiting for table. Once I even spotted people waiting outside the shop 15 minutes before it was opened for dinner.
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I thought we were early since I suggested we go before their opening time at 6 p.m. It was only 5.50 p.m. when we entered the restaurant but it was already crowded. We took the second last table available and those that came 5 minutes after us have to wait outside. What is so special about the place? Well...read on what we had for dinner!

Soup of the day? Definitely not!!!
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Walking into the restaurant, one can easily detect the smell of burning charcoal. Not surprising when almost 90% of the tables order their signature steamed fish that comes piping hot on a charcoal steamer. Thai style steamed fish is their specialty and one can choose between garoupa, threadfin, red or white snapper. I like the taste of the broth a lot. The spiciness and tartness of the broth are perfectly balanced with just the right amount of sweetness. While it's burning hot to the mouth, it doesn't leave a stinging sensation in my stomach. The spiciness came from dried chilies and birds' eye chillies; the wonderful aroma from lemongrass, ginger galangal and lime leaves, and the tartness from sour plum, salted vegetables and pickled garlic. The bowl of soup given earlier was for the fish. Because of the charcoal steamer, it dried up pretty fast so we have to refill the broth from time to time. The best time to attack the broth is midway through the dish when the broth becomes concentrated and more flavourful. The sweetness of the fish enhanced the overall taste too! Our threadfin was of decent size. The price of the dish?? RM27 only!!!
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Spinach in Superior Stock came next. I wonder if anyone could enlighten me about this dish here. All my life, the spinach in superior stock I ordered in PJ/KL is served in clear diluted stock with bits of salted eggs, century eggs and at times, some fried baby anchovies. But twice I ordered this dish in Klang and both came in thick starchy broth. The spinach in superior stock here live up to its name.
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This dish was indeed very SUPERIOR. Lots of Chinese Ham/Bacon, tiny whole dried scallops and pieces of salted eggs were found in this dish. Needless to say, the broth was sweet and tasty. I was thinking to myself, this gonna cost a bomb!! I guess my Makan Gang thought the same too. All were shocked when we saw the bill...RM12!!!!!
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Deep Fried Pandan Chicken..another signature dish of there. Quite big in serving, around half the size of my palm.

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At only RM1.60 per piece, it was a joy tucking into the well marinated chicken meat. Makan Gang already declared that they gonna have more than one piece on our next visit. P1110019

The Sizzling Hotplate of Prawns, Squid and Cuttlefish was nothing to shout about. The gravy was sourish sweet; appetizing but it failed to impress me. Maybe I was too busy drowning myself with the fish broth so I didn't bother having second helping of it. Priced at RM20, it wasn't exactly expensive as there were lots of medium-sized prawns.
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Lastly, another signature dish of theirs...Mee Siam. Funny how they fared so well with Thai-style dishes. Again, they got the taste right. The portion is enough for 2 person if you wanna make it as a meal on its own and it is economically priced at RM5 only!! P1110026

The total bill came up to RM78.60 for 4 adults including tea, rice and towel. Makan Gang was impressed and vowed to return this coming weekend to try their Claypot Fish Maw and Stewed Pig's Tendon.


Do check out this gem if you happen to be around the area.
Baby Seafood is located at:

No. 186A-1 Jalan Sg Putus
Batu Belah
41400 Klang
Operating Hours: 12 noon - 2.30 p.m.; 6 p.m. - 10.30 p.m.


Thursday, January 08, 2009

SOO KEE @ JALAN AMPANG, KL

Several months ago, Wong (my Makan Gang member) took Hubby and I for a scrumptious lunch at a two-decade old restaurant. Soo Kee is located along Jalan Ampang but for those who are not familiar with that area might find it difficult to locate the shop especially if you are coming from the opposite direction as it is blocked by a flyover right in front of the shop. For landmark, look out for Flemingo hotel at the opposite side of the road.

It was a hot day and I was expecting the place to be stuffy hot. Surprise surprise, it is air-conditioned and its quite neat despite being around for such a long time. The display of mouthwatering BBQ pork, steamed village chicken, roast chicken and roast duck immediately put a grin on my face.
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Wong ordered a few dishes for us to try, and with Wong around, Hubby and I always certain that nothing could go wrong. I sat back and observed the rest of the diners, ahem as well as the dishes they ordered. Some looks pretty good, in particular the braised bitter gourd spareribs which I could smell from my table.

First to arrive was a half portion of steamed village chicken. I am a big fan of village chicken for obvious reason; the texture of the meat is firmer than free-range chicken and most importantly, it has stronger chicken taste. Another reason would be the chicken skin. I know it's bad for health but I could never resist village chicken skin as it's slightly 'crunchier' and 'chewier' if compared to the 'soft and slimy' skin of free-range chicken. The steamed village chicken served here is nothing extraordinary that you couldn't find elsewhere but it was good enough to start off with our meal.
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We were given crushed ginger sauce and grounded vinegared chili sauce to go with the steamed chicken. I love the crushed ginger sauce as it reminded me of my late mum. She used to make this to serve together with steamed chicken. My mum's version is pretty easy to make. Just pound some ginger using mortar and pestle, drizzled some hot oil over, put in some salt and give it a good stir.
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The main purpose of visiting Soo Kee was for their famous Char Siu aka BBQ pork that many food bloggers raved about. We were served with a plate of half lean half fat cut of meat, just as requested. If look could kill, I am dead. It was glistening and perfectly charred. I am going to sneak into their kitchen on my next visit!!!
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True enough, it was tasty. The caramelized outer layer was aromatic with the level of sweetness just nice for me. Meat was tender and juicy. And as for the fatty parts...yumz..it melted in my mouth!! This is what I wish to achieve at home. I wonder if they accept any disciple...hmm....
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Lastly, a green dish to balance our meaty meal. Well, it wasn't at all that healthy choice either. We ordered Stir-fry Garlic Chives Buds (Gow Choy Fah) with Pig's Kidney and Intestine that came full of wok-hei (essence imparted from a hot wok). In fact, I could smell it all the way from the kitchen located at the back of the restaurant. Lip smacking good needless to say. Am not a kidney and intestine fan, but I enjoyed the aromatic chives buds.
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I couldn't remember the exact amount of the total bill but it should be pretty reasonable since no complain on the price from my financier. This is a place I don't mind coming back too, so Wong, when free???

Soo Kee Restaurant is located at:
No. 373-1, 4th Mile,
Jalan Ampang, Kuala Lumpur
Closed on Monday

Operating Hours: 12 noon - 9 p.m.

For other reviews on Soo Kee, do click here:
Masak-Masak, A Whiff of Lemongrass, Ravenous Rabbit

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

ROASTED PORK BELLY (CHAR SIU) IN CHINA TOWN

Funny title isn't it? Isn't it far much easier to call it Char Siu instead of "Roasted Pork Belly in China Town"? Anyway, this was the third time I attempt on the recipe of this book below following my energy draining Herbal Roasted Duck and my highly successful Crispy Roast Pork!
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First of all, this was a recipe all-gone-wrong. I am posting this up so that experts out there could provide me with some tips, and if possible, to share with me a good recipe for making tasty Char Siu.

The recipe calls for 1kg of pork belly. After informing my trusted butcher that I want a good piece of pork belly for making Char Siu, he assured me that he will choose a nice cut for me. I was eyeing for those with several layers of fats and meat but he told me the one he chose was the most perfect for making Char Siu. I wasn't too satisfy with the cut but I shouldn't argue with the expert, right? WRONG! The piece I bought was a huge chunky piece of meat with only one layer of fats on top with the skin removed. Anyway, I have already boycott my used-to-be trusted butcher!!
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For the marinade, the ingredients are:
2 pieces of Nam Yue (red fermented beancurd)
1 tbsp malt sugar
150g caster sugar
1 tbsp light soy sauce
1 tbsp oyster sauce
1 tsp dark soy sauce
1 tsp five spices powder
1 tbsp "Shaoxing" wine
Few drops of red food colouring

Mix the marinade ingredients well until the sugar is completely dissolved. I wonder if 5 spices powder necessary as I find the end result tasted weird due to the five spices powder taste.
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Mix well over pork belly and add in about 2 tbsp of chopped garlic. I used crushed garlic pip instead so that it is easier to remove before roasting. Marinade it overnight.
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Arrange the marinated pork on the roasting wire rack, roast in a preheated oven at 200 degree Celcius for 15 minutes. Dish out, dip the pork belly with some marinade sauce. Continue to roast for further 20 -30 minutes until cooked thoroughly. Dish out. Bring the remaining marinade sauce to boil. Cook until the sauce thicken, remove from heat and pour over the roasted pork belly or serve it separately.
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The meat was a bit dry. Too lean, hence tough! Tastewise, it wasn't what I expected. It doesn't taste anything familiar to me, especially when I could taste the strong five spices powder. I really wonder if this is the way they serve Char Siu in China Town aka Petaling Street. I am not giving up! I shall attempt this again but before that, I would need to do some more research on the marinade sauce. Anyway, do you any great Char Siu recipe to share??
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Friday, January 02, 2009

GUESSING GAME

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Another guessing game here. Guess what plant is this? Ok, 2 tips:

Tip #1 : As far as I know (I saw the box it came with), the bulbs are imported from China.
Tip #2 : Not sure why, I only get to see this for sale once a year, yes, for Chinese New Year!

So, any idea?

 

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