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PureGlutton



gastronomy, culinary, gluttony - all things connected with FOOD are shared here ...



Updated: 2018-04-24T23:44:10.640+08:00

 



I have moved!

2011-02-24T12:58:22.953+08:00

Yes, the time has come when I believe a new "home" is appropriate and thus, I have now moved into my very own domain :-)

Please visit me at my new humble abode at:

http://pureglutton.com/

I look forward to your support at my new "home" - please come! :-D



Organic Recipe

2011-02-11T16:49:19.013+08:00

9 days into the Year of the Rabbit ... and how are you enjoying the New Year so far?  The Chinese New Year is, without a doubt, an excellent occasion to spend quality time with family and friends, with food being the central stage.  Hasn't it been one feast after another since the New Year was ushered in?Vegetables PopiahWith so much rich meaty food being served since the Reunion Dinner, I think it's good to take a break and go for some healthy meatless cuisine.  For the uninitiated, you would never think that a restaurant would be located in the basement of a carpark.  Upon climbing down the flight of stairs from the B1 carpark, I was greeted by lush greenery - the garden that surrounds Organic Recipe - what a gem!  Choose to sit al fresco, closer to the shrubs & trees... or in the cool comfort of the interior.  It is located in Basement 3 of the Casa Utama Condominiums and sprang quite a few amazing dishes.I love the colorful Popiah - a beautiful mix of crunchy refreshing greens, purples, reds and orangey hued vegetables (which came from cabbages, long beans, carrots and turnips) - served with a light sweetish sourish dip with a hint of sesame flavour.One can never go wrong with Tofu & Angled Loofah.  It's one of my favourites, whether in a regular or vegetarian restaurant.  The homemade tofu here was not slippery smooth - the texture is slightly firmer but I have no issue with that. It gave a slight bite to the dish and went very well with the soft spongey loofah.I always marvel how the Chinese can make mock meats out of flour, gluten and beancurd with the almost-real meat flavours thrown in.  The so-called Spicy Mutton dish above had all the earthy meaty nuances and the added spices, lemongrass, curry leaves and chillies made this an excellent accompaniment to white rice.The "Assam Fish" is another great dish to go with rice.  Layers of soft smooth beancurd sheets encased in seaweed could almost fool one into thinking that it's a real fish fillet there.  Chunks of brinjals, tomatoes and ladies' fingers have totally absorbed the flavours of chillies, shallots, daun kesum.ginger and  lemongrass ... the only thing is I would have liked it to have a bit more tamarind in the gravy.  If you are a fan of Petai (our Malaysian stink beans!), then go for the Petai Fish.  I found this to be more exciting than the regular Assam Fish.Still on the "sourish" trail, go for the Tomyum if you want something more soupy.  Mixed vegetables and mushrooms cooked in a tomyum broth and served in a whole coconut.  You get to scrape and eat the sweet coconut flesh too!Pucuk Paku - jungle ferns is another favourite of mine.  Whenever I see this on a menu, I'll always order it.  I love the Organic Recipe version of this popular dish - lightly stir-fried with chillies and belacan.  The young ferns retained their crunchiness and the sambal belacan used had the perfect balance of spiciness.Bittergourd stirfried in a black bean sauce was delicious in its simplicity.  I liked how the bean sauce did not overwhelm the dish, yet gave it a balanced touch to complement the bitter flavour of the gourd.The Fruit Tea is a refreshing citrussy boost to the palate and helps digestion too, I was told.  I could drink cups and cups of this tea, really.The restaurant is modernly spacious yet cosy (I love their checquered table cloths!) and at one end of it there's a section which sells their organic foodstuff and ingredients.  After your meal you can go browse through the shelves & freezers and pick out some interesting food and snacks to buy.  Their wholemeal paus are good :-)  Their range of tofu products is excellent too.Google map to this place is here.Directions:  If you are coming from Centrepoint Bandar Utama, go straight after the traffic lights at the flyover above the NKVE Highway, keep left and turn into the 1st Left Turn (there is a signboard which says "Casa Utama").  Go[...]



Welcome, Year of the Rabbit!

2011-02-04T00:44:06.661+08:00

Gong Xi Gong Xi!
or...
Koong Hei Koong Hei!

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May the Year of the hoppity Rabbit bring you much abundance... health, happiness, prosperity and yumminess!

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My new friend

2011-02-02T18:27:43.825+08:00

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Kung Fu Pan Mee @ Taman Sri Sentosa

2011-01-28T17:31:26.746+08:00

"I'm going to bring you to eat the Best Ever Pan Mee in town!" - that was what LL told me one fine morning.  It is not very often that LL would actually bring me anywhere for food (it's usually the other way round) and I wasn't too sure that his promise of the "Best Ever Pan Mee" would hold true.  You see, when it comes to Pan Mee, I'm very picky.  Just like Fish-head Noodles, I will only go for the tested and proven places.  Simply put: if I walk into any coffee-shop, I won't order the Pan Mee or the Fish-head Noodles, unless they are highly highly recommended.So... OK, coming back to LL's declaration, we decided to take him up on his offer ... and that was how we found ourselves heading to Taman Sri Sentosa, just off Old Klang Road.  It's certainly not a familiar neighbourhood for us and LL, having just been there once (his friends brought him there) took us on a very roundabout and convoluted way to reach the place.  The shop is located in a row of shophouses facing a small wet market, with tables laid out under huge umbrellas.When it comes to Pan Mee, I always go for the "traditional" version - ie, "pinched pieces" of the flattened dough instead of the rolled-out strands.  And it must be the soup version - the "dry" version is never my choice.Now I'm not sure WHY this was called "Kung Fu" pan mee.  Probably because they come in LONG flat wide strips like these...Yes, they are really very long!  Or probably the cook had to resort to some "kung fu" stances when pulling out these long strips?!  I like how the texture of the Pan Mee is very smooth and slightly chewy at the same time.  There is a certain level of "bounciness" to the texture - I suspect the secret lies in the fact that not only plain wheatflour is used here.  There must be additions of other types of flour involved, because plain wheatflour will not give that kind of texture.The Pan Mee came with the requisite condiments of minced pork, thick slices of mushroom, fried crispy anchovies and plenty of "sayur manis".  The soup base is very flavourful, the stock having been boiled with anchovies and pork bones and the "sayur manis" gave it some added sweetness.  You can actually ask for extra portions of condiments, with an additional charge of RM1.  The Pan Mee costs RM5.50 (small) and RM6.50 (big).The "dry" version goes well with some dry chilli flakes...There are other items on their menu, eg pandan chicken, pork balls... but I come here only for the Pan Mee.  See, I'm very focused, that way.  I'm so focused that I practically empty the whole bowl, soup and all.So, did this place live up to LL's declaration of "Best Ever Pan Mee"?  Yes, I believe it does!  That's because every time we have cravings for Pan Mee, guess where we'd be heading?!  We really do get a massive KICK out of this Kung Fu Pan Mee, hehe!Kung Fu Pan Mee28 Jalan Sri Sentosa 9ATaman Sri SentosaOff Jalan Klang LamaKuala LumpurTel:  016-2883911 (Molly)Open from 8am to 3pm. Closed on Mondays. Directions to get there:  (courtesy of Masak-Masak - read her blogpost here)To get here, drive to Old Klang Road from PJ Old Town. Take the second right hand turn at the traffic light to get into Taman Seri Sentosa. Follow the road i.e. Jalan Taman Sentosa and drive past apartments and high tension wires. You will then see a Petronas petrol station on your left which is on Jalan Taman Seri Sentosa 8, take the first right down Jalan Taman Seri Sentosa 8a and then immediate left at the shophouses (there's a 7 Eleven at the corner). Drive down the road and take a right again at the end of the row where you will see Kedai Makanan BW Pasifik. Take an immediate right turn and drive down to the end of the road. The Pan Meen stall is on your left hand side facing the wet market.[...]



Erawan: Classic Thai & Fusion Delights

2011-01-25T17:02:29.929+08:00

Kota Damansara is one place that I avoid, most times.  Never mind that it is now considered a very "happening" place, never mind that there are restaurants and cafes coming up as fast as mushrooms after rain... to me, it's a crazy maze.  Add in the one-way streets and the haphazard parking/stopping of vehicles everywhere and the maze get crazier.Now, if there is one good reason for me to venture into that crazy maze, it's Erawan.Erawan - the classic Thai and Fusion restaurant.The name Erawan, in Thai, refers to The Elephant God.  It is also known as Airavata or Airawana in Sanskrit and in Bali, it's known as Erawana.  According to Aryan legends, the god Erawan is huge, white and has 33 heads.  Each head bears 7 tusks.  For each tusk there are 7 lotus ponds.  Each lotus pond has 7 lotus pads, each pad has 7 lotus blossoms and each blossom has 7 petals.  On each petal dances 7 angels.  Each angel has 7 ladies-in-waiting.  So, altogether, the god Erawan has 33 heads, 231 tusks, 1,617 ponds, 11,319 lotus pads, 79,233 lotus blossoms, 554,631 lotus petals, 3,882,417 angels and 27,176,919 ladies-in-waiting!However, for artistic reasons, he is usually portrayed with only 3 heads, rather than the 33 heads in the myth.  There are many legends about Erawan.  One popular one holds that the Lord Shiva gave him as a gift to the god Indra... and that Erawan was originally a god stationed in the Dao-Wa-Deaung heaven.  Wherever Indra went, Erawan would follow in the guise of a white elephant.  Not only is Erawan the lord of all elephants and the most powerful, he is said to be as large as a mountain.  In the Mahabharata, it is said that "the god Airavata has 4 tusks and 3 trunks.  He is great in size and pearly white".The above is translated from the Erawan Elephant Museum & the faith of its maker, Erawan Museum, Samutprakarn, Thailand. I read the above from notes provided in Erawan (the restaurant)... isn't it fascinating?Tucked in an intermediate shoplot, somewhere in that crazy maze of Kota Damansara commercial centre, is Erawan, the restaurant.  There are some pretty pots of flowers and foliage guarding the entrance.When you step into Erawan, you will be struck by the colours and deco of the place and how the owners - Chef Korn and Anan have lovingly arranged and decorated it with lots of items depicting the Thai culture and legends.  Every crook and corner is filled with beautiful cups, vases, bowls, figurines... the walls are adorned with vibrant lively paintings and fresh flowers are everywhere!  I just love the onslaught of cheerful colors that greet every visitor.If you think the deco of Erawan is impressive, wait until you see how their dishes are served.  I was pretty thrilled by the beautiful plating of each dish.  Their salads, curries... in fact, most of the dishes were vibrantly matched with all kinds of patterned crockery in every hue - natural pigments of the fruits, vegetables and meats used in each dish.  Put all these vibrant colours on traditionally Thai-designed plates and bowls and there you have it... each dish is like a piece of art and a delight to the senses... from sight, smell and taste!Let's start with some Appetizers...Rose Apples with Topping (RM30) - the special thick topping is made from dried shrimps, roasted coconuts, cashewnuts & other Thai spices - really addictive stuff!  I could eat a plate of this all by myself.Pomelo Salad (RM30) - mind you, only pomeloes from Thailand are used!  When we suggested local pomeloes as an alternative, Anan informed that Chef Korn would only insist on using Thai ones - such is the QC practised here!Lemongrass Salad (RM38) - finely-shredded lemongrass rings tossed with succulent boiled squids and shrimps, crunchy peanuts, cashewnuts, sprigs of fresh coriander leaves, topped with crispy fried shallot[...]



Chinese New Year Preparations

2011-01-23T22:25:24.187+08:00

The Year of the Rabbit is exactly 10 days' away!
For those of you who will be celebrating the Chinese New Year, how are your preparations coming along?  Bought your new (red) clothes?  Cleaned the house? Changed the curtains? Bought the CNY deco items?  Baked the cookies, or ordered them?

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Well, I have done some of the above... still some baking to do this coming weekend.  Not that I'm baking a whole lot of stuff - just that a couple of friends have asked me to bake some cookies for them... the rest are just for family and as gifts when we go visiting during the Chinese New Year.  I always think bringing along some home-baked stuff to friends' and relatives' homes sure beat store-bought snacks, don't you agree?

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Chynna @ Hilton KL - Standard Chartered Bank Extravagant 8 Menu

2011-01-21T17:48:45.248+08:00

Chynna at The Hilton Kuala Lumpur is yet another top Chinese restaurant in the Klang Valley selected to offer the Standard Chartered  Bank Extravagant 8 menu to their credit card holders.  A customised menu priced at RM888++ per table for 8 pax, Standard Chartered Bank credit card holders will not only be taken on a gastronomical journey, they will also be treated to complimentary fortune cookies.Let's see what Chynna has in store for this Extravagant 8 Menu... which, by the way, is only available from 20 January till 17 February 2011. As customary, a Lunar New Year festive meal will not be "festive" without starting off with a Lo Sang - a concoction of shredded vegetables and fruits, fried crispies, crushed peanuts and tossed with a special sauce.Organic Melon, Gold Pumpkin & Fruits Lo SangThis traditional dish has all the usual colourful shredded vegetables and lots of crispies & crushed peanuts - will definitely appeal to those who love lots of crunch & nuts in their Lo Sang!Hot & Sour Soup with Kimchi, Fish Maw & Bamboo PithsThe regular Hot & Sour Szechuan-style soup given an extra "oomph" from the dollop of Kimchi added.Steamed Canadian Cod in Fisherman SauceStewed Sun-dried Oysters with Fatt Choy, Braised Peanuts & ChickenVery "home-cooked" feel to this dish, as the cooking style and ingredients used bring on the "comfort food" nuance - a tad too heavy on the sodium though... perhaps some white rice accompanying this would not be a bad idea?Wok-fried Nian Gao with Chinese Cabbage & MushroomsSlices of white smooth slippery rice cakes lightly cooked with perhaps just a dash of hoisin sauce?And dessert...Chynna is helmed by the affable Chef HH Lam...... who hails from Port Dickson and has cooked for delegates of the APEC and ASEAN Summit Meetings.  Chef Lam has been with the Hilton Group since 2000.Special thanks to Mr Timothy Johnson for this invitation sent via Meena of A Whiff of Lemongrass to try out this menu.  If you are a Standard Chartered Bank credit card holder, make your way to any of the 8 top restaurants participating in this campaign for a special meal to usher in the Year of the Rabbit!  Just to recap, the other 7 restaurants are:1.  Li Yen, The Ritz-Carlton Kuala Lumpur2.  Shanghai, JW Marriott Kuala Lumpur3.  Celestial Court, Sheraton Imperial Kuala Lumpur4.  Tai Zi Heen, Prince Hotel & Residences, Kuala Lumpur5.  Zing, Grand Millennium Kuala Lumpur6.  Gu Yu Tien7.  Elegant InnChynna @ Hilton Kuala Lumpur3 Jalan Stesen Sentral50470 Kuala LumpurTel:  03-2264-2264  Fax: 03-2264-2266[...]



Elegant Inn - Taman Connaught

2011-01-18T12:10:55.621+08:00

With the Chinese New Year barely 2 weeks away and since we're talking about one of my favourite Chinese restaurants - Elegant Inn - I think it's quite timely that I share some of their other great offerings.  The few posts I have put up here so far were about their Menara Hap Seng restaurant.Now, let's take a yummy look at their Taman Connaught restaurant.  Oh before that, did I mention that Elegant Inn is listed in The Miele Guide as 1 of Asia's Finest Restaurant for 2010/2011?  Elegant Inn had been making waves in the Chinese, particularly Hong Kong-style cuisine scene, in the Klang Valley for a number of years now... starting from their Taman Connaught restaurant.  Housed in a humble intermediate shoplot, this restaurant is only open on Fridays, Saturdays & Sundays and helmed by the gorgeous-looking Chef Wesley Ng.  On all the other days, you can catch Chef Wesley in their Menara Hap Seng outlet.  Yes - that's for the benefit of Chef Wesley's legion of fans... which is growing by the day, so I heard :-)To usher in the Year of the Rabbit, Jeannette Han & her team have come up with 6 special Festive Menus, ranging from RM798++ to RM2,988++ for 10 persons.  The menus go by names like Auspicious, Happy, Blossom, Noble, Wealthy and Supreme ... all very appropriate for the Chinese New Year, wouldn't you say?Some of the items on these menus are featured in the Standard Chartered Bank Extravagant 8 Menu.Other special offerings you can find in Elegant Inn... my favourite among the trio below are those wicked Scallops rolled in Bacon - they are out of this world, believe me.In my previous post, I talked about their signature Salted Egg Yolk style of cooking used for prawns.  Their usual offering for this style of cooking is actually their Crabs...... and remember I mentioned how Chef Wesley would painstakingly and patiently spend 20-25 minutes just to cook up this dish?  I know, because I have seen him doing it...Talking about signature dishes, do ask for their Pepper Pig Stomach Soup... double-boiled with all sorts of goodies like village chicken, pork ribs, dried scallops, chinese ham, pickled mustard...Their signature Golden Boneless Stuffed Chicken... something not to be missed!On one occasion when we had dinner there, we were served this rather plain looking plate of Noodles... which at first glance, looked rather boring.  However, we learned a valuable lesson that night: Do Not Judge Noodles by Their Look!  This was where the genius-ness (for lack of a better word) of Chef Wesley came into play.  One slurp of these noodles and we were sold... totally.  For all I could see, there were only mushrooms and Chinese chives used in this dish... so how did Chef Wesley make this one of the yummiest-ever noodles dish I had ever eaten?  This is a must-order item for us.OK, if noodles aint your scene, then you must... you must really... try this...That, is possibly the Best Lap Mei Fan (Rice with Waxed Meats) on this side of the planet.  Read how Masak-Masak describes this - she does a much better job than I ever could.  Jeannette personally goes to Hong Kong and scouts for the best waxed meats there and personally hand-carry them back.  Such is the pride and passion this lady has for the fare served in Elegant Inn.The goose liver sausage used in this divine pot is from the famed Yung Kee in Hong Kong, no less... my favourite!The Lap Mei Fan is featured in some of their festive CNY Menus... else, you can also order this a'la carte... until stocks last!  I'd advise that you call to book this in advance - it is, after all, the Best Lap Mei Fan around here :-))Elegant Inn Restaurant16 Jalan Waras 1Taman Connaught, Cheras56000 Kuala LumpurTel:  03-9130-2626Fax:  03-9132-6577*Opens Fridays, Saturda[...]



Elegant Inn - Standard Chartered Bank Extravagant 8 Menu

2011-01-17T17:49:28.543+08:00

I was pretty excited when I was invited by Elegant Inn recently to try out one of their special menus which they have crafted in association with Standard Chartered Bank's promotion for their credit card holders for the coming Chinese New Year.  It's always a thrill for me to dine at Elegant Inn since I discovered this gem of a restaurant last year.  Since my very first visit, I had been bowled over by their fine HK-style Chinese cuisine and I have been back there several times with friends and family.I'm so glad to see that Standard Chartered Bank has included Elegant Inn into their list of 8 Top Chinese restaurants in the Klang Valley.  Customised Extravagant 8 Menus have been specially prepared by their best chefs exclusively for Standard Chartered Bank credit card holders at a price of RM888+ per table of 8 pax from 20 January 2011 to 17 February 2011.Let's see what's in store at Elegant Inn for the Standard Chartered Bank Extravagant 8 Menu...To usher in the Year of the Rabbit, what better way to start than to partake in the Bountiful Harvest Salmon Lo-Sang?Freshly-shredded cucumber, carrots, radish, ginger, pomelo, snow pear were tossed together fresh salmon, pearl clam strips and jelly fish.  I like it that one of their service crew actually helped us to vocalise all the good fortune wishes as we tossed the Lo-Sang as high as possible (without messing up the table too much!)... it was pretty enlightening to learn all the correct Chinese phrases for prosperity, good health, great career, abundant luck etc etc.  The sauce used to bind the Lo-Sang was light and refreshing - in fact, the whole Lo-Sang dish was light and refreshing with none of the cloyingly sweet, oily or overly-crunchy textures (as in, too much of crispies used) that some restaurants favour.  Every mouthful was a wonderful mixture of gorgeous "mouthfeel" - fresh crunchy juicy vegetables + fruits, tender marine-fresh salmon, delicately chewy pearl clam strips and stringy bouncy jellyfish!The soups served in Elegant Inn are mostly double-boiled as this is the best way to seal in the tastes and flavours of the ingredients.  In the double-boiling method, evaporation is minimised, thus reducing the loss of flavours, yet extracting the best from the ingredients used.Double-boiled Village Chicken Soup with Cordyceps Flowers & US Top Shell subscribes perfectly to this, resulting in the sweetest naturally-flavoured soup.  Cordyceps Flower is a valuable Chinese herb believed to help build the body's immunity, particularly good for the lungs.  A huge platter of the ingredients used in this soup - village (free-range) chicken, pork ribs, dried scallops, chinese ham, US top shell were dished out and served... still flavourful from the double-boiling!Golden Fried Estuary Garoupa with Chinese Leeks was served next...A thick generous slice of the giant estuary garoupa, fried to a golden hue and topped with chinese leeks and "har-kon" (dried prawn strips from Hong Kong) served with a light sauce made from superior soyasauce.This is one of the best way to serve "loong tann" - as this rendered the thick fish skin to be both crispy & slightly chewy.  A prized catch, this fish dish was a clear favourite (including mine) round our table that evening!Crystal Prawns done in Elegant Inn's signature Salted Egg Yolk style was next...I think the photo speaks for itself.  Unlike most restaurants, the buttery salted egg yolks had been cooked in such a way that the rich flavours had been totally infused into the prawns, not merely coating their shells.  I have personally watched their Head Chef, the dashing Wesley Ng, cooked this dish - how the salted egg yolks were meticulously & painstakingly cooked with butter and then skilfully im[...]



Tau Yew Bak

2011-01-08T23:49:03.934+08:00

When someone mentions "comfort food", an immediate image that would come to my mind is "Tau Yew Bak" - Pork braised in Dark Soya Sauce.  When I run out of ideas on what to cook for dinner or when I have one of those insane urges to have something porky to go with rice, invariably this dish would be my choice.

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So what makes a good Tau Yew Bak?  There are various versions to this popular dish.  My version would require a good cut of Belly Pork.  Some would prefer other cuts of pork, like shoulder loin, shank etc but I think nothing beats the belly cut. Make sure you get a cut with equal layers of fatty and lean meat.  You do need the fatty layer - that's what gives this dish it's flavourful lardy taste.

Get a good bottle of Dark Soya Sauce - one that's thick and sweetish with aromatic caramel nuances.  Make sure you use enough of this to give the gravy a dark luscious look.  I like it really dark - brownish hues just won't do.

You will also need a good measure of high quality Light Soya Sauce - this kinda binds the dark soya sauce and porky flavours really well.

So all you have to do is saute several whole pieces of garlic in some oil, add in the pork, stir well.  Add in the soya sauces (both light & dark), enough water to cover the meat and braise in low heat for 20-30 minutes until the pork softens to the right bite.  If you want a more sweetish tinge to the gravy, add in some sugar.  For a more substantial twist, add in some boiled eggs and serve this with some sambal belacan by the side.  I guarantee you will down tons of rice with this :-))

The good thing about this dish is that it keeps really well - in fact, it tastes better after 1-2 days!

So, what's your comfort food?



Dancing Fish!

2011-01-06T21:39:41.131+08:00

Not even a week had passed since I got back from Bali and I jumped, without hesitation, when dear Masak-masak asked if I'd like to go try out Dancing Fish.  I mean, I had been gorging on Indon-Balinese food for 4 days prior to that and yet I couldn't wait to go and check out Dancing Fish, a new restaurant serving Malay-Indo cuisine located on the 3rd Floor of the spanking new refurbished wing of Bangsar Shopping CEntre.The signature dish & namesake of the restaurant - Dancing Fish is a delightfully fried Red Tilapia so skillfully fried till the entire fish can be eaten, bones, head and all.  With accompanying ladies fingers, long beans and tomatoes and sitting prettily on a sweetish-sourish tangy sauce known as "Masam Kedondong Pedas", the only direction the cleverly-contorted fish danced was straight into our tummies.  By the time we were done with the fish, the plate was cleaned out - not a single bone was left!Service was fast and courteous.  During the short lapses while waiting for the next dishes to be served, we were busy snacking on the Emping crackers which we dipped enthusiastically into the sambal terasi - it was pretty addictive!  The Indonesian crackers made from melinjo nuts, slightly bitterish, went so well with the sambal terasi, not unlike our sambal belacan but with crushed tomatoes added in.I really love love their Kerabu Pucuk Paku!  Lightly blanched jungle ferns served with a coconut-based gravy with just the right combination of turmeric, shallots and daun salam - this dish won the "fastest disappearing" award for that meal.  I was so happy this was right in front of me and I made sure it didn't quite move away from me much, hehe!  I was so tempted to tilt the plate and pour all the gravy onto MY plate.  This is one vegetables dish I would order and order again!I loved their Terung Sambal too.  Eggplant grilled and slathered with a thick sambal sauce and topped with crispy fried shallots, this was a winner in my books.  But my only grouch about this dish is that it will make you want to "tambah nasi" (add more rice!), such is its addictive sambal.We had a whole Bebek Goreng Bali (Fried Duck) which was thoughtfully served in 2 plates.  The chefs at Dancing Fish must be master-fryers because the duck was fried to a crisp but had not lost any of its flavour plus the flavours of the marinade.  I had no need of the accompanying chilli dip - the pieces of crunchy ducky were scrumptious on their own.The one not-so-on dish, for me, was the Tahu Telur.  It didn't do much for me in terms of taste and texture.Cumi Cumi Bakar - yes, it tasted as good as it looked up there.  Squids are not exactly the easiest item to cook but the chefs here have done a marvelous job.  Smooth and tender (not chewy at all), the fresh squids were grilled to perfection.  I totally dig the sweet sticky sauce (I suspect it's made from "kicap manis") glistening on the smokey shiny plump squids.  Definitely a favourite round the table!You can choose between plain white rice or yellow rice to go with your dishes.  Tasting a bit like our local "nasi minyak", the fragrant spicy yellow rice (a tad oily) went very well with all the dishes.  In fact, you can even just eat it on its own - it's tasty that way.Desserts... Chendol with Durian Ice-cream... this is so decadent!  Thick coconut milk, soft pandan-flavoured chendol, red beans, thick gula melaka and best of all, that scoop of divine durian icecream.If chendol is not your scene, go for something lighter in the form of Lemongrass Jelly served with some "pearls" of assam which give you a delightful sour experience when they burst in your mouth.  I have no idea how these we[...]



HAPPY NEW YEAR!

2011-01-01T18:22:30.257+08:00

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Happy New Year, everyone!

Here's a toast to a fabulous 2011 ahead - the start of another decade.

I wish you all good things for the new year - joy, health and fulfillment in every way :-)  Personally, I feel nothing beats the love and warmth of family and good friends... a meal shared in the company of family and friends is always enjoyable and meaningful.

We had an amazing steamboat dinner last night at my dear friend, CH's beautiful home in Desa Parkcity...

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Because we were away in Bali during Christmas, I saved the turkey and only roasted it today for lunch... shared with family and close friends, of course.

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May 2011 bring us abundance... love, good health, happiness and good food :-))



New Formosa Restaurant @ SS2

2010-12-30T23:12:21.800+08:00

It's the eve of New Year's Eve.  In another 2 days, a new year will be upon us.I always get a bit nostalgic during this time of the year.  It's like I'm trying to grab the last few hours before the year ends to think and reflect on what has happened, or didn't happen, this whole year.  As I looked through my Flickr folders, the nostalgia dipped one notch further when I looked at my food photos taken at New Formosa Restaurant.Wayyyy before I started food-blogging, this restaurant has been one of my favourites.  I've been going to this place for my lunch for years (something like more than 16 years!).  My top favourite lunch item here is their Seafood Porridge.  I almost always order this on almost all the occasions that I have been here at lunch, usually with friends and colleagues.  Their service crew recognise me by sight and they know what I want when I tell them "my regular order please!"  The seafood porridge here is really the most delicious comfort food ever - piping hot smooth rice porridge brimming with fresh seafood - fish fillets, shrimps, clams, fishballs, squids, jellyfish... drizzle some soysauce and shake some pepper over the porridge and you'll have a most fulfilling lunch - delicious in its simplicity.As much as I associate seafood porridge with New Formosa, their Stir Fried Butter Eel is another one of their signature dishes.  Soft succulent eel fillets encased in a light crispy batter and delicately fried to a golden brown. Curry leaves and bits of chilli padi give this dish that extra "ooomph".  Eat this with white rice or just by itself as an indulgent snack.At a recent dinner here together with my dear Kahcheh, we wanted something simple & light yet nourishing and immediately this item jumped up from their menu as our mutual choice - a delightful Tofu dish - braised with mushrooms, fungus and angled loofah.If you like innards, try their Pig's Intestines with Pineapples.  The tender intestines, cooked in a sweet sour gravy with chunks of pineapples and bell peppers were refreshingly different - the intestines were not fried , hence less oily & chewy.  The gravy had none of the cloying sweetness of sugar overdose in typical chinese sweet-sour dishes.One of Chef Lee's signature dishes - Bamboo Yam Rice - a must-try for carbs lovers.  I just couldn't resist this, more so when I was told there're yam cubes in the rice.  Yes, I'm a yam-lover.  The rice was made more fragrant with bits of dried shrimps, fried shallots and chopped spring onions.  I can just eat this alone.  No need for any accompanying dishes, really.We were joined by Mrs Jeanie Lee - a most gracious and warm host.  When she saw our "paltry" dishes on the table (by her standards it was paltry but there were only 3 of us - how much could we eat?!), she immediately bustled into the kitchen and asked Chef Lee to come up with a few more dishes!  Minutes later, this was served on our table...Huge succulent prawns cooked in their signature style.  One word: divine.When she found out that yam was our favourite, magically this dish appeared...Pork Ribs braised with Yam.  If we were not already so full, we would have asked for white rice to mop up the gravy, deliciously thickened by the soft powdery yam, divinely infused with porky lardy goodness from the tender ribs.In Mrs Lee's books, we were not allowed to leave her restaurant without tasting their desserts.  I love how the Taiwanese love their yams.  Yams are a mainstay in their menu - in rice dishes, in main courses and even in desserts. Their signature dessert: Pumpkin Yam Pudding with Gingko.  I like their sans lard ver[...]



Time flies

2010-12-30T00:10:19.915+08:00

It's the final week for the year.  Where did my 2010 go??  I honestly can't believe the year has just flown by and 2011 will be dawning in a few days' time.

It's good to be on leave during this time.  And half the week is gone already.  It's nice not having to be up and out of bed when my alarm goes off at 6am.  I get to lie in for a bit, just a bit.  I'm out of the bedroom by 9'ish, latest.

Somehow the days get by very quickly.  I go to the wet market, take my time to buy a week's worth of foodstuff.  I groom my two furkids.  I bake.  Experiment with new recipes, tweak them, make do with whatever I have in the fridge/larder.

Like how I mixed fresh cream with kaya and chopped nuts for the filling of this swissroll.

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I sit by my verandah to enjoy the fruits of my baking.

It's even nicer if there's some rain to accompany me.

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I meet up with friends for lunch and spend hours catching up.  I go home and bake some more, more cakes to bring home to mom tomorrow.  A day trip to Ipoh - and that will take care of my Thursday.

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I book a 2-hour massage for the next day.  And after that there's a New Year's Eve dinner to go to.  But before that, bake another cake to bring over as dessert.

Lunch with family on New Year's Day - the meats are marinated and waiting in my fridge.

Is it any wonder that my days fly past so fast?



Magnolia Sherbet - Lift Your Senses

2010-12-22T15:36:43.456+08:00

With all the heavy hardcore eating during this festive season, what would be a most refreshing and light dessert?  After a heavy meal, the last thing I'd want is another rich and heavy sweet.  What comes to mind (and desire) is the brand new Magnolia Sherbet.

Magnolia Sherbet:  Think "refreshing", think "nutritious fruity", think "tantalising", think "healthily yummy" - Yes, all those are perfect descriptions of the new Magnolia Sherbets! 

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*Photo courtesy of Magnolia Sherbet

Available in 4 tropical flavours - lychee, mangosteen, melon & orange.  Not only are they light and creamy, you get real fruity chunks wholesomely packed in those cute 85ml cups.

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There's even a little spoon packed inside - makes eating the sherbet so much more convenient!

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The best thing is that these little cups of sherbet are so light on the palate and nutrituous, it makes the indulgence a little bit "less guilty" and healthier!

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I tried all 4 flavours and I must say all of them are good but My Favourite is the Mangosteen!

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Just look at this - isn't that the most divinely luscious & delectable scoop of sherbet ever?!

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These 4 flavours are available at all major supermarkets, hypermarkets and large provision shops, retailing at RM2.50 (WM) and RM2.80 (EM).  For more information on Magnolia's range of yummy tasting icecreams, please visit them here.

OK, now I need to go and get my Mangosteen fix!



Food Porn: Home-made Siu Yook

2010-12-16T14:07:35.752+08:00

Siu Yook (regardless how it's spelled) = Roast Pork.

Feeling kinda "hypoporkinaemic" whole of last week - thanks to GFAD who spammed Facebook and Twitter with her home-made Siu Yook, I got 2 slabs of pork belly and made these yesterday.  Just to satisfy some cravings, hah!

(Read about my 1st attempt and 2nd attempt at Siu Yook!)

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Another angle...

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Slice 'em up...

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Then chop 'em up!

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They tasted good with some instant noodles!

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D Legends Bar @ TTDI

2010-12-13T12:56:58.727+08:00

If you are in the Taman Tun Dr Ismail neighbourhood and would like to have a drink, chill out with friends in a friendly casual bar/restaurant, give D Legends Bar a try.Newly set up some months ago by a group of buddies, the outlet is run with Hans at the helm - a cheerful down-to-earth personable young man.  When you speak to him, you get a deep sense of passion and commitment from someone who's very much into the F& B business.  The pricing in D' Legends, ranging from beer to food, is really very reasonable and when I asked Hans how they expect to make run a profitable joint, his answer was a nochalant "It really depends on how much money you want to make, at the end of the day! And how happy you are."I like his philosophy.So what kinda reasonably-priced food are we talking about?  Top on their list is this...D Legends Pork Burger (RM15)A thick fat minced pork pattie - it's like 3x thicker than the bun, full of flavour from the herbs and spices, hand-made by Han's kitchen crew, headed by none other than his mom and aunt!  Top that thick fat pattie with a slice of melting cheese... it's burger heaven!You can get a variety of Indian-influenced starters in D Legends...Samosa (RM8)Indian-style chicken curry puff, served with mint chutneyMy friends love their Chiken Tikka (RM12) ... they have perfected the art of grilling chicken breastmeat to NOT result in a dry or hard texture.  At first, I didn't realise it was chicken breast because the Chicken Tikka cutlets were juicy, tender and fabulous with the masala spices marinated in them!Prawn Tapas (RM14)We absolutely loved this!  Succulent pranws in a thick creamy buttery sauce flavoured with lots of garlic & other herbs, we practically mopped the whole dish clean with the slices of French loaf.Mushroom Tapas (RM10)Another winner - fresh mushrooms saute'ed in olive oil before being cooked in a garlicky creamy sauce.If you want something a bit more "substantial" to go with your drinks, try their D Legends Pizza (RM18) ...thin crust pizza topped with chicken ham, sausages, onions and chilli and generous amount of cheese!I like their funky deco... walls adorned with artsy sketches of famous artistes... MJ's my favouriteOh, for all you gals out there, here's more incentive for you to chill out at D Legends.  For Ladies Only: every night, pay only RM50 nett for 3 cocktails of the night... choose from the list below:Monday:  Batidas (Havana rum, fresh lime, fruits - choice of strawberry or passion fruit)Tuesday:  Martini (Bombay Sapphire gin, Dry Vermouth, Olives, Lemon twist)Wednesday:  Cosmopolitan (Absolut Vodka, Triple Sec, Cranberry juice, lemon squeeze)Thursday:  Margarita (your choice of original strawberry or green apple flavour: Jose Cuervo tequila, triple sec, lime juice)Friday:  Long Island Tea (Absolut Vodka, Havana Club rum, Bombay Sapphire Gin, Jose Cuervo tequila, triple sec, lemon juice, coke)Saturday:  Mojito (Havana Club rum, mint, lime, soda)Sunday: Sex on the Beach (Malibu, orange juice, cherry syrup)D Legends Bar24 Jalan Datuk Sulaiman (same row as Devi's Corner & Mama's Kitchen)Taman Tun Dr Ismail60000 Kuala LumpurOpen:  5pm onwards (weekdays); 4pm onwards (weekends)[...]



Can we have MORE cake?

2010-12-03T10:51:35.823+08:00

Can we have some more cake, please?

Yes, that was what my colleagues asked me this morning, after they have tasted this Crazy Nuts Cake which I made last night...

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A simple soft moist chocolate cake, coated with more chocolate and sprinkled with caramelized hazelnuts and almonds...

The texture looked a bit dense here because the cake was just removed from the fridge and you know how chilled chocolate cake would be.  Leave it a bit longer at room temperature for the cake to "fluff out" and the texture will be softer!  Anyway, I'm glad everyone loved this ;-)
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And while we are talking about cakes, here's my Fruitcake, which is now on Version 3...

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... meaning I have revised the recipe 3 times since I first made it!  Hmmm.... I think this should be just right now :-)  As you can see, the cake is not too heavy on fruits... so you actually eat some CAKE and not just mixed dried fruits!  The chopped almonds and walnuts give a nice crunchy bite to it.  And those bits of red you see there - those are not the usual sickeningly-sweet glaced cherries... those are cranberries!

I like to cut my Fruitcake into small pieces and nibble on them slowly.... more so to avoid over-pigging-out!  It kinda makes sense, right?  Smaller pieces, less cake, less calorie-intake... but then, how about MANY MANY small pieces?  Yeah, I know... it kinda defeats the purpose too :-P

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Academy of Pastry Arts Malaysia

2010-11-29T14:34:15.941+08:00

The spate of baking I've been doing lately... (like the cakes featured in my 2nd last post here) and last Saturday, a chocolate cake, 2 fruit cakes and 35 muffins emerged from my oven ... this could be inspired by a recent visit I made to the Academy of Pastry Arts Malaysia.Thanks to Jade Wong of Mustard Tree Communications, (through the kind recommendation of FBB) I spent a delightful afternoon at the Academy.  The moment I walked through the glass door, I was bowled over by the wonderful aroma of BAKING... you know, that oh-so-delicious aroma that can only come from baking a concoction of butter, flour, eggs, sugar and goodness-knows what else (yummy stuff, of course!)The Academy houses an impressive 8,000 sq ft which had been assigned to a Chocolate Room, Bakery Room, Pastry Kitchen, Pastry Room, Weddine Cake Room (with ceiling mirrors!), Chef's Lounge and classrooms. The Academy's main focus is to train students through their Certificate programs:* 3-month Certificate Program in Pastry & Bakery (Full time)* 3-month Certificate Program in Pastry & Bakery (Part time)* 3-month Certificate Program in Bakery (Full time)* 9-month Certificate Program in Pastry & BakeryStudents and participants will be personally trained and coached by pastry and bakery champions ensuring hands-on teaching, practice and repeated exposure to the best pastry techniques, pastry tools and ingredients.  Believe me when I say they use only top-notch ingredients (like Varlhona chocolates) and the Academy is fitted-out with the most modern state-of-the-art equipment.Helmed by the affable and charming Chef Guillaume Lejeune as the Director of Pastry Studies, who comes with more than 13 years of international experience in teaching, demonstrating in Hospitality Institutes as well as hands-on experience within Michelin starred hotels and restaurants in France, the Middle East and Asia, you know you are in pretty good hands!Existing professionals and pastry enthusiasts can also go for short-term courses whereby you can learn how to bake:* Cheesecakes* Chocolate for Beginners* Chocolates & Pralines* The Art of French Pastries* Tea Cakes, Cookies & BarsTheir fees are very reasonable, ranging from RM150 (half day), RM250 (full day) to RM500 (2 days).On the day I was there (together with a few other bloggers), we were treated to a short lesson on "How to Bake & Decorate a Gingerbread House"!Actually, to save time, the ginger bread house pieces were already baked and ready.  After the informative demo by Chef Lejeune, it was our turn to decorate our houses!  The "cement" used to glue the walls and roof of the gingerbread house is made from beaten egg whites + icing sugar.  Chef Lejeune showed us the technique of creating "icicles" that should hang from the roof beams...Sift some icing sugar over the house for that "snow" effect... and then proudly presenting my handiwork...... standing next to WMW's house...As Christmas is just round the corner, you may be interested in their "Christmas Delights" class on 13 & 14 December 2010 (one time only!).  We were treated to these Christmas delights baked by Chef Lejeune and his students...Stollen - so fragrant with spices and dried fruits!If one is not enough for you, have a whole basketful!How about some Christmas Cookies? Cardamom honey and Lemon Cinnamon flavoured...A beautiful and ingenious way to stack up your cookies...Tell me, can you ever, ever resist something like this...Chocolate Moelleux - sinfully rich chocola[...]



Old Fuzhou Restaurant

2010-11-24T17:15:42.124+08:00

Since we are on the RED trail, I just had some lovely RED Wine Meesuah last week.  Cooking with red wine - the very red home-made wine prepared from red rice and glutinuous rice, not the typical western red wine from grapes, is typical of Foochow or Fuzhou cuisine.The Fuzhou aka Hockchew people originate from the Fujian province of China.  In Malaysia, they are located predominantly in Sibu (Sarawak), Yong Peng (Johor) and Sitiawan (Perak).  There are many special foods associated with the Fuzhou people but undoubtedly their very famous dishes would be those that are cooked with their red wine.  Traditionally, the wine is made from fermenting a mixture of blended red rice bran and cooked glutinuous rice.  This rice mixture must be kept in a very clean ceramin urn, with some filtered water and left to ferment for about 40 days!  The resultant wine is then filtered and it can keep for a very long time.  The wine residue, known as "wine lees" is not discarded - in fact, this concoction is used in cooking many of the typical Fuzhou dishes.  You can actually packets of dried wine lees from Sitiawan and Fuzhou shops.Take, for example, the Red Wine Chicken Meesuah.  Besides using the wine, some of the rice residue is also added for more colour and flavour.  The distinctly sweet and sourish, slightly fruity aroma of the red wine had infused into the thin rice vermicelli and every slurp of the smooth slithery noodles was like a toast on the palate.  I love the still-crunchy black fungus and the succulent pieces of chicken, while well-cooked, did not disintegrate in the pot.The wine lees (residue) was used in a number of Old Fuzhou's signature dishes.  While meesuah is a well-known and popular item, the Fried Rice was something I have not tried before.  Fried plainly with just some eggs and spring onions, the dish did not detract from its main attraction, ie the red rice residue which imparted a lovely earthy, slightly sourish, flavour to the rice.The lovely owner of Old Fuzhou strongly recommended that we try their Pork Slices with Hamchoy (pickled mustard leaves).  It was certainly a a great choice.  Slices of lean pork were stir-fried with bits of hamchoy with wine lees.  Very simple, very basic.  This would go wonderfully with white rice.Fuzhou Fishballs - soft bouncy fishballs with fillings of minced pork in the centre, cooked in a sweet light soup.  How comforting.  I love fishballs (good ones, of course) and with the added bonus of minced pork in the centre, I'm happy with my soup!The Fuzhou-style of Oyster Omelette ("orh chien") is quite different from the Hokkien-style, which is softer, more gooey due to the use of tapioca flour.  In Old Fuzhou, you get the fluffy crispy version.  Just look at how light & fluffy the omelette is - achieveable, with some skills, when you fry the eggy concoction in some very hot oil!Eat your Orh Chien with chilli sauce... not any chilli sauce...... it must be this particular one: Kampong Koh Garlic Chilli Sauce!I always buy at least 10 bottles of these whenever I go to Sitiawan... or "tumpang" my colleagues who go there!The only non-Fuzhou dish we had that evening was this Vinegar Pig Trotters...because it is a favourite dish of our Fairy Godmother of Makan.  Vinegar Pig Trotters is really such a popular dish, cooked and eaten by every Chinese community here that I'm not sure where it really originated from.  It's popu[...]



Red Eggs

2010-11-24T09:36:44.893+08:00

We all know that the Chinese celebrate the one-month "birthday" of a baby by serving red eggs (and pickled ginger and yellow glutinuous rice with curry and red angkoo kuihs! - but that's another story, hehe!).  We Chinese love the color RED as it embodies happiness, good fortune and EGGS have always been a symbol of Life.  It isn't surprising at all to note that the traditional red-dyed eggs are not only featured in babies' one-month celebrations, they are also served during birthdays, well... because birthdays are also a celebration of "renewed life", no?   I remember my mother used to prepare 2 red eggs for my birthdays when I was a kid and it was something I always looked forward to.  It was quite a thrill for me to crack open the red eggs and they tasted so good when eaten dipped in some soya sauce.  Yes, life was much simpler back then.Eggs play a pivotal role in Easter celebrations: whether from folklore or a religious point of view, the egg is widely used as a symbol of life renewed.  Did you know that the Greeks also dye their eggs red for Easter?  It is their brightest symbol of Greek Easter, representing the blood of Jesus Christ and rebirth.  It's interesting to know that the Greeks make their own traditional natural red dye by boiling onion skins and vinegar! (I must try that out one day).  Anyway, what got me interested in this red eggs story is that recently I was asked to make them.  You see, I have seen and eaten so many red eggs in my life but I have never ever attempted to make any!  My colleagues wanted to give something "traditional" to a few birthday people and naturally, red eggs was suggested and somehow, the task fell on me.  It may sound simple - I mean, how difficult is it to dye some hard-boiled eggs red, right?  I wanted to make sure they turn out a deep red, not pink or various shades of pink & red.  Yes, I'm sure you have seen poorly-dyed eggs which have uneven red/pink/white patches all over.I sought help from Twitter and Google and went looking for good red dye in the shops.  I learned that adding vinegar to the dye solution helps in giving better coverage and even-ness of colour.  Oh yeah, I followed every instruction to the "T".  The tricky part was actually in how or where to place the eggs for drying after dyeing, heh!  The guidelines were to place them on a wire tray, which I did... but then I found out that resulted in some "blotches" at the points where the eggs touched the tray.  Ahhh...so how so how??  Well, I did my best to rub & massage those spots to even out the blotches but still, there were some blemishes left. There must be some way to hang or suspend the dyed eggs so that they don't come into contact with anything while drying out??!  Any sifu out there who can enlighten me on this?Looking at the eggs, I think I should have smoothened out the shells first with some sandpaper before dyeing them... to reduce those natural dots and ridges which are still visible.So, whose birthday is next so that I can practise my Red Eggs skills?  Any takers here?  ;-)[...]



Let us eat Cake!

2010-11-22T11:19:25.928+08:00

Should there be a reason for eating cake?

No, not really.

Not when you get one of those baking bugs biting you!  I can go for months without turning on my oven... but when the bug bites, I can be baking more than one cake a day.  That's what happened today.

First of all, I have a slab of cream cheese sitting in my fridge, fast approaching its shelf life and I had to do something about it.  Having bought some couverture chocolate recently, I whipped up a chocolate sponge and cut it into 4 layers.  Now what shall I put in between the layers... something which goes with that cream cheese?  Rummaging through the larder & fridge, I found walnuts, almonds and a pack of Oreos.  So I decided to whip up the cheese with some cream and chocolate... sprinkled some toasted nuts ... decorated it with the Oreos wafer rolls... and this was the result...
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The Christmas mood has permeated the air... so I guess now is as good a time to bake a fruitcake as any.  Having soaked the mixed fruits in brandy for the past few days, I added a little "twist" to my recipe and came up with a light version of the traditional fruitcake... it's not totally densed up with fruits... it's buttery, spicy, zesty, nutty and best of all, very much brandied! (used up half a bottle of brandy to soak 1kg of mixed fruits!)

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So... do we still need a reason to eat cake? :-))



A Hairy Encounter @ Elegant Inn

2010-11-18T21:40:21.906+08:00

It's been a crazy crazy couple of weeks!  I've been meaning to share this much earlier but somehow had to put this off due to work backlog and stuff.Since my first visit to Elegant Inn, I've been back there a couple of times... mainly to bring family and friends who've been rather impressed with my 1st review of this place.  In my first visit here, we had the opportunity to try out their Hairy Crab Set, minus the crab at that time because Hairy wasn't available then - he was probably undergoing the final phases of maturity in Lake Tai or Lake Yangcheng in China!  Known also as the Chinese Mitten Crabs (due to the thick layer of hair on their claws), the best hairy crabs reputedly comes from Lake Yangcheng, nearby Shanghai.  However, these prized crabs from Lake Yangcheng are now snapped up by the Chinese population and it's not likely there's any left over for the export market - this is what the lovely Jeannette Han imparted to us.  Most likely the hairy crabs we get here are from Lake Tai.Of course the hairy crab is revered for its divine roe... flesh aside.  And for that, you would think that the female crabs are the ones that are served.  Wrong.  Actually, it's the male crabs that often made their way to our dining tables!  Jeannette explained that female crabs are rarely marketed because, firstly, the taste & aroma of their roe is an "acquired" preference - it's more gooey, sticky and more "intense" in flavour which not many people would like.  Secondly, most female crabs are better left alone in the lakes to "go forth and multiply" - otherwise, how to ensure that there's sufficient crabs for the next season's harvest?In most restaurants, the proper "weaponry" (well, they certainly looked like weapons to me!) is provided for you to extricate all the roe & meat from Hairy.  There's a pair of pincer+scissor-like weapon which seemed intimidating enough and another 2-prong fork which also looked pretty lethal.  Oh well, if these seem scary to you, just use your fingers and teeth, no worries!The 6-course Hairy Crab Set @ RM118++ per person comes with:*Twin delight Platter of Smoky Prawn Cake & Crunchy E.I. Nachos*Double-boiled Shark Cartilage Chicken Soup with Shark's Fin & Bamboo Pith*Seasonal Greens with Japanese Oyster Sauce*Braised Rice with Whole S.African AbaloneThere's one change in the Braised Rice though... from the earlier review, this was served with cubed seafood but now Elegant Inn has gone 1 step higher by serving a Whole South African Abalone!...and of course, HAIRY himself!Actually, at closer range, Hairy does look pretty scary, don't you think?!  Hairy looked like some mean alien creature.Not convinced?  This is WHY he's called "HAIRY"...But don't let those hairy legs throw you off because they are full of juicy succulent meat inside!  Be sure to use your weapons/fingers/teeth to prod/suck/push every yummy morsel out!If you are squeamish about "dismantling" Hairy, worry not - the friendly service crew at Elegant Inn would be more than happy to do it for you... and they do an excellent job!What you have to do after that, is... just dig in!  Look at that clump of to-die-for roe! (Get your anti-cholesterol pills ready lah!)Hmmm... if you are a crabby fan, one Hairy is really not enough!  Hold those roe in your mouth, savour it with your tongue, for as long as possible... coz t[...]



Tanzini @ GTower

2010-11-09T15:30:00.454+08:00

With a tagline of "From Farm to Table" and a promise of a unique dining experience "right under the stars", Tanzini believes in using the freshest ingredients for their natural flavours, cooking them with soul and passion and serving the feel-good cuisine in a modern elegant setting 28 storeys above ground.  Actually it's 29 storeys above ground if you want to experience that "right under the stars" ambience... the "starry" effects from the majestic clusters of lights as seen here...You will certainly feel like you are almost up there with the stars if the view through your dining room is something like this...OK, having set you in the right mood now, let's get on to the meal itself.  Shall we have some starters?Tanzini Antipasti Tower (RM50)A 3-tier platter featuring the day's offer of their fresh antipasti (starters, something served before a main meal) delights.  To be honest, I have no idea what those little morsels were actually (besides the obvious cherries/grapes/cheese) but suffice to say, those tasty bits teased our palates and had us wanting more!While waiting for our main courses, we were served with baskets of these freshly baked foccacia bread, which tasted absolutely divine just on their own!  We had to forcefully stop ourselves from gorging on them.Salad, two ways (RM18)Blanched baby spinach with side garden salad, dressed with a dash of garlic oil, herbs & pepper - the requisite fibre composition for our meal.Aged Venison (RM78)Roasted Australian Venison with Fennel & Beetroot, served with a port reductionDL's main course - the meat was a bit hard and chewy, perhaps a little longer in the roasting pan would help.  Aged Wagyu Tenderloin (RM76 for 100g, RM98 for 160g)I had this served Medium Rare so the meat was pretty tender and juicy (like wagyus should be!).  However, it was a bit bland - can do with a bit more flavouring here.  Sides of asparagus and mashed potatoes were OK.Pan-roasted Barramundi (RM38)Organic barramundi served with baby potatoes, cherry tomatoes, porcini mushrooms, zucchini, cornetti beans and lightly dressed with an anchovy glaceThis was probably one of the better dishes of the evening.  I had a bite and found the fish to be really fresh with a delightfully light springy texture.Agnello Milanese (RM46)Cutlets of Australian lamb grilled served with olives, eggplant and sun-baked tomatoesThe chef did well with these lamb cutlets.  They were nicely & crispily charred at the sides yet retaining their tender slightly chewy insides, like how perfectly-grilled lamb should be.Tanzini Tiger Prawn Vongole (RM38)Grilled tiger prawn & clams with "tau miu" sprouts served aglio olioThis traditional Neapolitan dish of pasta + clams (vongole) was given a couple of fresh twists - in the form of the tiger prawn and the "tau miu" which gave this pasta dish a refreshing crunchy bite.Now, on to the Desserts...Tiramisu a Pezzi (RM26)Served with freshly Lavazza toasted coffee bean.  Not a tiramisu fan myself but DL seemed to like it.Homemade Gelato (RM12/scoop)We had the lavender and coffee.  Flavours were very subtle, I would say.  I liked the accompanying caramelised "wafer".Chocolate Hazelnut Praline MousseThis was actually brought over from The Bridge Bar and wasn't found in the Tanzini menu.  Our hosts insisted that this is a must-try item and they were absolutely right.&nbs[...]