Monday, December 29, 2008

Mama’s Radish Cake (萝卜糕)

I always believe that following the recipe book to the dot does not guarantee success. A perfect example is my Mom's 萝卜糕. The original recipe is from a cook book she read many years ago, (Delightful snacks and dim sum by Agnes Chang) but she only succeeded in making it super delicious after MANY failed attempts and MANY adjustments to the recipe.

Recently I've documented down her own revised version and now I'm sharing it with everybody, so we don't have to go through the painful trial and error process. Heehee...Thanks Mummy!

600g White Radish
300g Rice Flour
75g Tapioca Flour
2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
4 cups of cool water
1 cup of warm water
Salt and Pepper

Optional Items
Chinese waxed sausages
Dried Shrimps


Grate the radish coarsely and set aside.

Rice Flour Batter
Mix rice four, tapioca flour, ½ a teaspoon of salt and pepper with 4 cups of cool water. Mix well and set aside.

Optional Items
- Chinese waxed sausages: Soak sausages in boiling hot water for 5mins. Drain and chop into small pieces.
- Dried Shrimps: Soak in water for a few minutes, drain and set aside.
- Mushrooms: Chop into small pieces.

1. With a little oil, stir-fry the garlic with the grated radish

2. Add 1½ teaspoons of sugar into radish mix and stir fry in high heat till radish becomes slightly soften.

3. Add 1 cup of warm water.

4. Add in optional items, cover up the frying pan and cook in low heat until radish becomes soft and slightly yellowish.

5. Mix the rice flour batter well and pour into radish mix through a sieve.

6. Add salt, pepper and a little msg before stirring the mixture.

7. Continuously stir the mixture in one direction until it forms into a thick ball of dough.

8. Scoop into an oiled tin and smoothen it out.

9. Steam for 35 to 40 minutes or until chopstick inserted in center comes out clean.

There's so many ways to enjoy this dish!
1. Steamed: Slice it up and serve it with a little soya sauce or chilli
2. Pan-Fried: After it's cooled, slice it into small pieces and pan-fry it till it's a little golden brown.
3. Stir-Fried: Chop it up into small pieces and stir-fry it up with dark soya sauce, chilli and garlic. Hawker style!

The cake can be kept in the fridge after it is cooled. Try not to keep for more than 1 week.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Wah Kee Prawn Noodles

Hands down, this has got to be the BEST PRAWN NOODLES I have ever had. This is actually the 2nd time I went there, because on the first attempt, the noodles was completely sold out even before the lunch crowd has dispersed.

This prawn noodles is not exactly your typical prawn noodles. On the store front, you may be shocked to see that the prices may range up to $10.00! Well, since the reputation is SO GOOD, might as well go all the way and order the best they can offer!

We waited for about 45mins, (I think it's due to the inefficient aunties and uncles working at the store) but it was sure worth the wait I tell you! Where do I start..?

The THREE, sweet, succulent, super fresh, JUMBO prawns?
The unbelievably sweet, or in chinese, very 鮮, seafood flavour of the soup that reminds me of lobster bisque??
The wonderful noodles, cooked to perfection with that amazing chilli sauce and generous sprinkle of fried pork lard???

Like I said, it's not the typical prawn noodles taste, which is more salty. Honestly I CANNOT find any fault in that wonderful bowl of goodness. I actually felt a little lost because everything was so good that I seriously could not decide which to devour next. A big bite into the prawns? A mouthful of noodles? Or should I only drink the sweet sweet soup? Dilemma...

My poor hubby was allergic to prawns, so I felt a little sorry for him, who had to watch me munch down the food greedily. (do I detect some drool at the corner of his mouth?) So I promised him that next time we'll both have the prawn noodles, and we'll go home immediately after that so that he can have his allergy breakout at home. Somehow I think he would find it all worth while!

*TIP* MUST go early to avoid disappointments! I went around 11.30am...

Wah Kee Prawn Noodles
Blk 41A Cambridge Road Hawker Centre (Pek Kio)
7.30am to 2pm
Closed on Mondays

Tiong Bahru Hua Yuen Porridge

If I have to choose what is my favourite dining out breakfast, this is it. A hot and piping bowl of fried big intestine porridge (炸大腸粥)from Tiong Bahru Hua Yuen Porridge. Located at the Tiong Bahru food centre, the store has been around since before the renovation and it serves good, authentic Cantonese porridge.

So far I have not come across another store that sells fried intestine porridge. Maybe it's because it's a lost art really. Many people just don't bother to sell fried intestine dishes anymore because it is such back breaking work! You have to wash it VERY thoroughly or else it would smell (yah gross right), and the folks at Hua Yuen sure knows how to make good intestines!

I love the contrast of the crispy and crunchy intestines with the smooth and silky porridge. It is the ultimate comfort food for me, especially on a cool morning.

Of course, if you are having breakfast at Tiong Bahru Food Centre, it would be a real shame if you went all the way just to enjoy ONE dish. In fact, it would be a down right sin!

So before we even start on the porridge, we would always have at least 4 pieces of the famous zhui kueh. The pickled turnip topping is SO good, Cobby would even mix a little into the porridge.

Of course, how can you have porridge without some freshly fried you tiao (油條)? Imagine dipping the hot and crispy fried dough stick into the porridge before sinking your teeth into them.... yummm... heaven...

I love you tiao...

Perfect combination...

Of course, if you're not a fan of fried intestines, they also have the usual pork, chicken or fish porridge, which is just as good!

Tiong Bahru Hua Yuen Porridge
30 Seng Poh Road
Tiong Bahru Market and Hawker Centre

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Loong Fatt Tau Sar Piah

We were around the area this afternoon, so we stopped by the store at Balestier and bought some yummy tau sar piah, or bean pastries.

Balestier road is well known for the several tau sar piah stores. The story that I heard was that it started with just one store, opened by the master yoda of tau sar piahs. Then, the apprentices learnt how to make the beautiful pastries from the master and left the nest to open their own stores all over Balestier! Ingrates...

Anyway, it's super easy to spot the original master store. Located right at the end of Balestier Road, the very first store, is the store that looked like time stood still. The store looks quiet and sleepy from the outside, but walk into the store and you'll find a whole army of aunties, rolling trays and trays of dough and wrapping bean paste into them.

You can even enjoy the pastries, fresh out of the oven, with a nice cup of coffee at the store, which is super vintage with the marble table tops and wooden chairs.

The tau sar piahs come in either sweet or salty versions. 60 cents each... Super fluffy! I also like it that they do not wrap too much dough around the bean paste. Very light and great for tea break! :D

Loong Fatt Eating House & Confectionary
639 Balestier Road
Tel: 6253 4584

Mon-Sat & PH: 8am - 4.30pm(Closed on Sundays)

Monday, December 1, 2008

Mellben Seafood

If you are looking for a good quality crab but not wanting to travel all the way to East Coast for your seafood, you can drop by Toa Payoh for your fix!

Mellben Seafood is more popular for their crab beehoon and their more unique crab dishes like their Golden Sand Crabs, but Cobby and I aren't really fans of crab beehoon. So we went for the classic Chilli Crab for our dinner that night.

They have a interesting system at Mellben. You actually have to order your food before they prepare a table for you. I guess in this way, you get your order faster as the restaurant is crowded almost everyday at Mellben.

The wait is definitely worth it! Even though we ordered 2 small crabs, it was heavenly! The crab was so meaty with nice, firm flesh! The sauce was not very spicy, but the flavour was just nice to dip the delicious fried man-tous in. Perfect complement to the crabs!

This was what we ordered that night:

2 small crabs $49.40 (1kg+ per crab)
crispy baby squids $12.00
stir fry baby kailan $8.00

Mellben Seafood
Block 211, Lor 8 Toa Payoh

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Salmon Spaghetti Aglio Olio

This was one of my first few recipe entries at my original blog. Back then, my Salmon aglio olio pasta was very simple, but abit bland. Later I learnt from Jamie Oliver that the key ingredient in aglio olio was actually something smoky. Which is either bacon, anchovies, or both.

I've also been more adventurous in adding herbs and spices instead of just garlic and chilli padi, and I found that a little parsley and dried chilli flakes makes it even better! I used to add tomatoes and capsicum in it, but one day we just stopped adding and found out that it taste just as good anyway. So this is a bah-getarian dish. :D

You will need:
1 tbsp chopped garlic
3 pcs of chilli padi chopped
1 large onion chopped
2 tsp dried chilli flakes
1 tsp Parsley
4 pcs of bacon chopped
2 Salmon fillets
Canned chicken stock

Boil spaghetti with a pinch of salt

Pre-Heat the oven (200°C Roast option for 10minutes)

Pat the fillet dry with some paper towels and salt the skin of the fillets

Using a non-stick frying pan, without oiling the pan, sear the skin side of the fish for a minute before searing the other side for another minute before popping them into the oven for about 5 mins. (Tip: Line your baking tray with aluminium foil to save on cleaning up!)

While your fish is roasting, fry your chopped bacons till brown and crisp and remove them from the pan.

Fry onions till soft, add chilli padi and garlic.

Add in your pasta and stir fry them in high heat. (Tip: Be generous with the oil or else the pasta would be very dry)

Add in your chilli flakes, parsley and some stock and continue frying. Pour you bacon back in last, so that it remains crispy. Add salt to taste.

Serve the pasta into two plates. Place your salmon fillet on top of your pasta.

Bon Appetite!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Chocolate Madness Muffins

I remembered ever making a mean batch of double chocolate muffins but I can't seem to find it in this blog! After searching around my other blog, I found it! The original recipe comes from my favourite cook book, Donna Hay, Simple Essentials: Chocolate.

The original name was Milk Chocolate Chunk Muffins, and uses 1 cup of chopped milk chocolate. But I've only got chocolate chips in my fridge, so I added 1 whole cup of chocolate chips into the muffin mix! Haha... A little overkill, but my friends absolutely loved how chocolatety the muffins turned out!

2 cups self raising flour, sifted
1/3 cup cocoa powder, sifted
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup caster sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2/3 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup milk
1 cup unsweetened chocolate chips

1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees celcius
2. Mix flour, cocoa powder, baking powder & sugar
3. In seperate bowl; mix eggs, vanilla, oil & milk
4. Mix wet mixture to the dry mixture
5. Fold the chocolate chips into the mixture
6. Spoon mixtures into muffin tins lined with paper cups
7. Bake for 20mins or until cooked when tested with a skewer

Serve with a hot cup of coffee!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Instant Pizza Toast

A friend from Hong Kong taught me this, and I just love her for it! This is a perfect little snack or breakfast on days where you just want something a little extra, something other than your boring peanut butter sandwich. And it's SO easy to do!

All you need is: Pasta sauce, Cheese and Bread

I like to use shredded mozzarella because it's nice and stringy, like pizza! But if you don't have those in hand, you can always use those Kraft square cheese slices.

Just spread some pasta sauce onto your bread, sprinkle cheese onto it and throw it into a toaster till the cheese has melted into a gorgeous, divine, lava-like goo with slightly browned tips.

Instant Pizza Toast! Couldn't be more simple than that!

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Double Chocolate Layer Cake

This is my very first attempt in making a layer cake! I got the recipe from The original serves 8-10 persons, using a 20cm cake tin. I cut all the ingredients by half and used a 12cm cake tin, so the cake is much smaller.

I made the cake yesterday evening, but I couldn't eat it as it would spoil my dinner! Agony! So I only got to try it a few minutes ago and I must say...


VERY chocolately, so it's perfect for those chocolate craving moments! I only spread a very thin layer of frosting so as not to make it too sweet, and I was right. The chocolate sweetness is just nice. Perfect with a hot cup of unsweetened earl grey tea!

Original Recipe - Serves 8-10

110g plain chocolate, broken into squares
200g self-raising flour
30g cocoa powder
a pinch of salt
175g unsalted butter, softened
60g light muscovado sugar
110g caster sugar
4 large eggs
3 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon baking powder

Chocolate Fudge Cream:
200g plain chocolate, broken into pieces
175ml double cream
225g icing sugar

Preheat the oven to 180oC. Grease and base-line two 20cm cake tins. Melt the chocolate in a bowl over barely simmering water, and cool until tepid. Sift the flour with the cocoa and salt.

Beat the melted chocolate, flour mixture and all remaining cake ingredients together until smooth.

Divide the mixture between the two cake tins and smooth down lightly. Bake for 30 minutes until firm. Test with a skewer. Let them cool in the tins for 5 minutes, then turn out and finish cooling on a wire rack.

While the cake is baking, make the chocolate fudge cream. Melt the chocolate in a bowl. Put it back over the heat, and gradually beat in the cream. Once it is all in, take off the heat. Sift the icing sugar and beat into the chocolate and cream mixture, to get a smooth, fudgy blend.

Sandwich the two cakes together with one-third of the chocolate fudge cream. Spread the rest over the top and sides, roughing it up here and there with a fork.


Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Braised Chicken Spaghetti

Most homemade pasta dishes involve a jar of pasta sauce from the store, honestly I have nothing against that, and they make quick and fantastic pasta dishes! But sometimes I just like to have something different, and this recipe is an easy and delicious alternative to the usual tomato based pasta.

Serves 2
1 pc of boneless chicken thigh - diced
5 pcs of large button mushrooms - sliced
1 large onion - cut into large slices
a few slices of carrots
2 pcs garlic - roughly chopped
Chicken stock
1 tsp of dried Oregano
pinch of salt
1 small knob of butter

Spaghetti - a bunch with circumference of about a 50cent

1. Using a deep pot, brown the chicken pieces in oil. Remove from pot.

2. Stir fry the mushrooms, onions, carrots, garlic in pot with the remaining oil with a good pinch of salt.

3. Add in the chicken, oregano and add stock till it almost covers all the contents.

4. Put the lid on the pot, lower fire, and let it simmer while you prepare the pasta.

5. Cook the pasta according to the instruction on the packaging.

**while waiting for the pasta to cook, keep busy by washing dishes and clean up the kitchen!**

6. About 5mins before the pasta is done, add a knob of butter into the chicken and let it continue to braise. The butter would make the sauce rich and velvety!

7. Drain the cooked pasta and pour into the pot with the braised chicken.

8. Stir well and serve with a nice salad!

Super Yummy Braised Chicken Spaghetti

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Teriyaki Roast Chicken with Corn

After checking with my previous entry, I realised that I've actually posted this recipe before, but it was a more simple version and it was more asian style, served with mushroom rice.

We didn't feel like eating rice today, so we opted for a western style of dining...

1. Place the boneless chicken thighs into a ziplock bag and add in the marinate:
2 cloves of garlic - roughly chopped
1 teaspoon of ground ginger *TIP*
a good splash of teriyaki sauce
Then I just throw the zipped up bag into the fridge and let it marinate for 20-30mins.

2. About 30mins before we are ready to dine, preheat the oven at 200 degrees Celsius for 10mins

3. Marinate the corn with a little of the chicken marinate, oil & a pinch of salt.

4. Place everything onto your baking tray and pop them into the oven for 20mins!

5. After dishing out the meat, you can make some sauce! To make the sauce, pour the drippings from the baking tray onto a frying pan. Add some liquids (wine, stock or water) and heat it up a little. Add some cornstarch water to thicken the sauce.

6. Serve with a nice green garden salad!


I saw this on TV! Next time you buy fresh ginger, keep some frozen ones in your freezer. It's a great idea because:
1. It keeps it fresh for longer
2. When you need ginger as a marinate, grind it into the food. The frozen ginger becomes something like a ginger powder - perfect for marinates.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Hairy Gourd, Corn and Pork Rib Soup

Being Cantonese, having soup during dinner is very important. My Mommy taught me this recipie, but the original uses hairy gourd, carrots and pork ribs. My hubby loves corn, so I switched the carrots for the corn. Just as sweet!

For a soup that serves 2-3,

1 small hairy gourd (毛瓜)
1 corn
6 pieces of pork ribs
4 pcs of dried dates
4-5 pcs of dried mussels/scallops (optional)


For the gourd:
1. Use the back of your knife and scrape away the hairy skin of the gourd, revealing a light green gourd.
2. Cut and discard both the tail ends of the gourd and cut the rest into equal sized sections.

Corn: Just cut into equal sized sections.

Cooking Time!

1. Put half a pot of water over the fire to boil

2. Before putting the dates into the water, pinch it to crack it open.

3. When the water boils, put in your pork ribs

4. When the water bubbles, add in the corn

5. When the water bubbles, add in the gourd. If available, add in the dried mussels or scallops for extra flavour.

6. Let the soup boil over medium heat until the gourd becomes translucent. Watch the water level of the pot, make sure it doesn't dry out. (If it does - just add water)

7. The longer the soup boils, the tastier it gets!

8. When the gourd becomes translucent and the soup becomes a light brownish/yellowish, add salt (and a pinch of msg - if you like) to taste.

Goes very well with cut chilli padi and soya sauce!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

CoCo's Fool-Proof Sardines

This is a super simple dish and Cobby absoulutely loves this! Highly recommended for all you people who needed to whip up something real quick!

All you need is:
Canned Sardines (I love Ayam Brand)
Onion - sliced
Chilli padi - sliced
Lime or calamasi juice
Salt & Sugar

Note that I didn't state how much! Cause it's all up to you! SO FLEXIBLE RIGHT! You like onions? Slice 2 or more. You like it hot and spicy? Cut 2 chillis. Don't like? Cut 1 only lor... Haha...

I know... the canned sardines is already soak in tomato sauce! Why do we still need to add ketchup?? You see, the sardine tomato sauce is quite bland and tasteles, so the sauce would be even more fabulous and rich when you add in some ketchup!

**In case you're wondering what's that 2 yellow lumps on the little dish, they are frozen calamasi juice. I juice the whole packet of calamasi and freeze it so that I can store it and use only when I need it. I learnt it from a friend's mommy!**

1. Fry the onions in oil and a pinch of salt till it's nice and soft.

2. Add in the whole can of sardines (I like to half it 1st), chilli, ketchup and a little water and let it bubble for awhile.

3. Add a little sugar and salt to taste.

4. Just before turning off the heat, stir in the calamasi juice

5. SERVE~!

Goes fabulously with a steaming bowl of rice!

Sri Bistari - Famous Nasi Ayam Penyet (Changi)

Ever since I saw Makansutra recommend Nasi Ayam Penyet on TV, I've been hooked. I thought the one that Seetoh recommended was Nuramin at Changi village but it turned out to be the wrong stall, so, not very good. Then, upon recommendation by Mao, I went to try out The Ayam Penyet House at Beach Road. It's good, but not exactly to my liking. Then one fine day I was inspired to find the original recommendation by Makansutra and... I FOUND IT!

Apparently the store is located at the more obsure and quiet wet market side of the Changi Village Hawker Center. No wonder cannot find it! Good things are really harder to find huh!

This is the second time I've visited the store. I love how the skin of the chicken is super crispy with a slight spice fragrance to it. But amazingly, the flesh is still very tender and moist! So, crispy on the outside, moist on the inside! Best!

The chilli paste is not the super spicy type, but has a slight sweetness in it. But somehow it goes very well with the chicken, and I love to mix it with the rice like when having nasi lemak.

Unlike the Ayam Penyet House with the fancy side dishes, this store only gives a cherry tomato, some cucumber slices and a lettuce as a side. But I like it this way as the raw vegetables provides a nice refreshing contrast to the crispy fried chicken.

My only complain is that the chicken is TOO SMALL! Leaving you with a half full feeling, but allowing you more space for other yummy delights you can find at Changi Village's hawker center. On our 2nd visit we ordered 2 sets and an additional plate of chicken ($3.50) to share - just nice... :D

The chicken comes with a plate of fragrant chicken rice and a bowl of soup, total cost - $4.00

Definitely will go back again!

Sri Bistari - Famous Nasi Ayam Penyet (Changi)
Blk 3 Changi Village Road
#01-40/41 Singapore 500003
Time: 1000 - 0200
For other outlets, click here

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Yi Bao (怡宝) Shredded Chicken Hor Fun

What used to be called Yee Cheong Yuen Noodle Restaurant in a coffeeshop, is now air-conditioned and renamed as Yi Bao. Cobby and I always pass by this place on the way to other eateries as we were heading go to Holland Village for dinner. Not until I saw a recommendation by another food blogger did I actually gave the place a try. Verdict? I'm so glad we did!

An affordable menu

Highly recommended: Shredded chicken hor fun

The hor fun is nice and silky, the gravy is full of flavour and the chicken is very tender! Excellent!

Alternative: Braised beef hor fun

For beef lovers, the braised beef is very tender and flavourful.

Fried baby sotong

Try out their wide variety of side dishes, like this fried baby sotong. Nice and crispy...

31 Lorong Liput
Singapore 277742

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

CoCo's Tempura Vegetables

We had vegetable tempura recently at a Japanese restaurant, so today I was suddenly inspired to make some myself for lunch!

This is a great and simple dish for parties and also great when you want to clear out the left over vegetables in your fridge. Besides, it's easy to make and delicious even by itself!!! Whoo Hoo!

All you need is:
vegetables - Shredded
plain flour
an egg
very cold water

You can choose what type of vegetables you want. I used sweet potato, carrots, golden mushrooms, capsicum, onions and bak choy.

For the batter, I mix an egg with a cup of very cold water. Then I mix in the flour until the batter is nice and thick - like a pancake batter.
*It's ok to have lumps in your batter - they are nice and crispy!

All that's left to do is to fry them! Coat a small mixture of vegetables in the batter and fry them in a small pot of hot oil till they are nice and golden brown.

While they were hot, sprinkle A LITTLE salt on the vege cakes and serve!The vege cakes are delicious by itself, but we happened to have some soba sauce in the fridge and it goes perfectly well with it too!

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