Tuesday, 31 December 2013

Hokkien Prawn Noodle


A prosperous new year to one and all.  May this coming 2014 bring us more joy and blessings, and may our unfinished businesses from the past year(s)  be accomplished.  A few more hours to go and its 2014.  We are excited as everyone else as we are positively looking forward a brighter future.  

Today is also my favorite niece's birthday.  Happy birthday Richie girl! Wishing you all the best in life and may you grow to be smart, responsible, and resilient.

By now, most Filipino household  all over the globe are preparing something special for their medya noche.  We are too.  Despite having tummy problems (don't ask what as it is complicated) we are preparing for a simple medya noche menu.  My husband will be cooking roasted duck for me.  He promised cook duck for me for weeks now and finally he's doing it and I can't wait.

What I am going to share with you is another Asian noodle recipe which you can make for your medya noche. Hokkien Prawn noodles is one of my favorite Singaporean noodle .  I used to order this noodle dish from hawkers and food courts in Singapore.  I've been trying to cook this noodle dish and this is so far the closest to the taste of the Hokkien prawn mee I had in Singapore.  You can see my previous Hokkien Prawn noodle recipes here Fried Hokkien Mee with Chicken and Pork and Hokkien Prawn Mee


This is the Hokkien Prawn Noodle I've cooked way back April this year.  I will try to cook this again in 2014.

    HOKKIEN PRAWN NOODLE


Ingredients :

Dry Egg noodles (I used UFC pancit canton) - 100 g
Bihon - 100 g

Shrimps - 15 pcs
Squid Rings - 20 pcs
Pork (fat and meat separated)   - 200 g.
Bean sprout - 3 handfuls
Eggs, 2 pcs
Garlic, minced - 4 cloves
Onions, diced - 1 medium
Green Onion leaves, chopped - 2 stalk
Knor shrimp cube - 4 pc
Black Pepper Powder
Low Sodium Salt - 3 tsp or to taste
Vegetable Oil - 2 tbsp
Water - 5 c
Water for cooking the noodles

Cooking Procedure :

1. Soak the bihon for at least 20 minutes.  Drain
Some brands take longer to soften so you need to check on them



2. Boil water and blanch the egg noodles for at least a minute. Rinse and drain.  Set aside.
3.  In a wok, place the vegetable oil and pork fat.  Pan fry the pork fat until it almost turned brown then add the pork meat.  Scoop out the pork and place in a plate.  

Making the stock:

4. In a pot, place a small amount of pork lard and heat it under medium fire.  Saute in it a small amount of garlic then the onions.
5.  Stir in the shrimps and squid rings. Simmer for a minute
6.  Pour the water and season with salt, knor shrimp cubes, and black pepper powder.  Bring to a boil.  Let simmer for a minute then scoop out the squids and set aside.  Continue to simmer for another 5 minutes.  The taste should be strong (shrimpy and salty)

Cooking the Noodles:

7. In the same wok, heat half of the lard under high fire.  Set aside the remaining half.  Beat in the eggs and stir.
8. Stir in the bihon and egg noodles.  Sear the noodles. The wok should be hot.
9.  Pour a cup of stock and let the noodles simmer in it while stirring continuously.
10.  Add more stock and the pork, shrimps, squid, and bean sprout.  Stir.
11.  Move the noodles to the side of the wok if you are using a big wok, otherwise use another pan.  Pour the remaining lard and saute in it the garlic until it almost turned brown.  Stir in the noodles.  Stir continuously.
12. Remove from fire. Add more stock before you serve then garnish with chopped green onions.

© myFresha-licious (31December2013)

Saturday, 28 December 2013

Chicken & Shrimp Pad Thai


Pad Thai is the first thing that comes to mind when we are in a Thai restaurant.  My husband and I have been frequenting a small Thai restaurant here in Doha called Thai Snack but they are not serving pure Thai food since they also have "pancit canton guisado" which is a Filipino noodle dish they also have tom yum noodle that is so sweet :-(.  So I was not surprised when their Pad thai tasted different.   

Thai Snack restaurant which is located at Al Nasr St. is supposed to offer Thai food as authentic as one can get outside of South East Asia.  Yes, no, and maybe, all I know is that their Pad Thai wasn't authentic enough for me as it is so sweet (may be i forgot to request for lime and chilli sauce perhaps?).  For me,  I want a pad thai noodle that has a well balanced sourness with that extra fiery-hot chilli kick that will make my husband sweat out profusely (evil grin) 



What is Pad Thai?  It is Thailand's most popular noodle dish locally and internationally.  It is a common dish found among Thai's dinner table and is also branded as the "ultimate streetfood" in Thailand.  Pad Thai is a stir-fried noodle dish that used a thick flat rice noodle (3 mm thick is commonly used) and a mixture of different ingredients such as pork, chicken, seafood, or vegetables. It is cooked with a sauce that is made of tamarind juice and / or lime juice that is balanced with sugar and seasoned with fish sauce.  This sauce makes the dish savory with a well-balanced sourness.  Hot chilli pastes or flakes are also added  as desired to provide the extra kick.  Then finally, chopped or whole peanuts are added to garnish the noodle dish before serving.

I have been really meaning to cook this Thai noodle dish for several months now and I was able to do so just a few weeks ago before Christmas.  Since I want to satisfy our palates with authentic tasting pad Thai  I painstakingly searched for an authentic Pad Thai recipe over the www so that I can tell my husband that I have an authentic recipe for reference otherwise he will not believe that what I am cooking is Pad thai and taste like pad thai.  He is usually skeptical about things you know.  Beware though, there are recipes posing as authentic Pad Thai but uses catsup / ketsup in the sauce.

Here's my take on the Pad Thai and it tastes really pad thai :-)

CHICKEN & SHRIMP PAD THAI
( http://www.myfresha-licious.com/ )

Ingredients :

Thai Rice noodles (3mm thick) - 250 g
Chicken, cubed - 200 g
Shrimp - 100 g
Garlic, minced - 5 cloves
Onion, diced - 1 medium
Green Onion Leaves, julienne - 5 stalks
Dried chili peppers - 1/2 tsp or as desired
Black Pepper Powder - 1/4 tsp
White Pepper Powder - 1/4 tsp
Peanuts - 4 tbsp
Vegetable Oil - 2 tbsp

Sauce :

Fish Sauce - 3-4 tbsp or to taste
Soy Sauce - 1 tbsp
Brown sugar - 2-3 tbsp
Knorr Tamarind Bouillon - 1/2 of a cube
Lime Juice - 2 tbsp (or half of a medium lime fruit)
Water - 1/4 c or enough to cook the noodles

Marinade for the Chicken:

Soy Sauce - 2 tbsp
Dark Sweet Sauce - 2 tbsp


Cooking Procedure :

1. Marinade chicken for at least 2 hours.  Drain and set aside
2. Soak Rice noodles until it softens but stays firm and not soggy (about 30 minutes depending on the rice noodles you are using)
3. Combine all of the ingredients for the sauce and make sure that the bouillon and sugar are dissolved.
4 . Heat oil in a pan and fry the peanuts until they turn golden brown.  Remove peanut and set aside.
5.  Using the same oil, saute garlic until aromatic then add the onions then add in the chicken.  Stir fry under high heat until the chicken is cooked.
6.  Toss in the noodles and the shrimps and stir fry for about 5 minutes stirring briskly (still under high heat)
7.  Pour the sauce and sprinkle with the white and black pepper powder.  Stir.  Simmer until the noodles are cooked.
8.  Push aside the noodles and scramble the egg.  Mix the scrambled egg along with the peanuts and onions leaves with the noodles.  Stir for about a minute.

Dish out and garnish with  the remaining green onion leaves.

© myFresha-licious (28December2013)

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PAD THAI
Author: Natty Netsuwan
( http://www.thaitable.com/thai/recipe/pad-thai )

2-3 Servings, Prep Time: 40 Minutes, Total Time: 40 Minutes


Prepping

Start with soaking the dry noodles in lukewarm or room temperature water while preparing the other ingredients. Getting the noodles just right is the trickiest part of making Pad Thai. Make sure that the noodles are submerged in plenty of water. Check out Tips and Substitutions for in depth explanations. By the time you are ready to put ingredients in the pan, the noodles should be flexible but not mushy. Julienne tofu and cut into 1 inch long matchsticks. When cut, the super firm tofu/pressed tofu should have a mozzarella cheese consistency. You can fry the tofu separately until golden brown and hard, or you can fry with other ingredients below.
Cut the Chinese chives into 1 inch long pieces. Set aside a few fresh chives for a garnish. Rinse the bean sprouts and save half for serving fresh. Mince shallot and garlic together.

Cooking

Use a wok . If you do not have a wok, any big pot will do. Heat it up on high heat and pour oil in the wok. Fry the peanuts  until toasted and remove them from the wok. The  peanuts can be toasted in the pan without oil as well. Add shallot, preserved turnip, garlic and tofu and stir them until they start to brown. The noodles should be flexible but not expanded at this point.
Drain the noodles and add to the wok. Stir quickly to keep things from sticking. Add tamarind, sugar, fish sauce and chili pepper. Stir. The heat should remain high. If your wok is not hot enough, you will see a lot of juice in the wok at this point. Turn up the heat, if it is the case.
Make room for the egg by pushing all noodles to the side of the wok. Crack the egg onto the wok and scramble it until it is almost all cooked. Fold the egg into the noodles. The noodles should soft and chewy. Pull a strand out and taste. If the noodles are too hard (not cooked), add a little bit of water. When you get the right taste, add shrimp and stir. Sprinkle white pepper around. Add bean sprouts and chives. Stir a few more times. The noodles should be soft, dry and very tangled.
Pour onto the serving plate and sprinkle with ground pepper and  peanuts. Serve hot with the banana flower slice, a wedge of lime on the side, raw Chinese chives and raw bean sprouts on top.
As always, in Thailand, condiments such as sugar, chili pepper, vinegar and fish sauce are available at your table for your personal taste. Some people add more chili pepper or sugar at the table.


Tips and Techniques

  • By far, the trickiest part is the soaked noodles. Noodles should be somewhat flexible and solid, not completely expanded and soft. When in doubt, undersoak. You can always add more water in the pan, but you can't take it out.
  • Shrimp can be substituted or omitted.
  • In this recipe, pre-ground pepper, particularly pre-ground white pepper is better than fresh ground pepper. For kids, omit the ground dried chili pepper.
  • Tamarind adds some flavor and acidity, but you can substitute white vinegar.
  • The type of super firm tofu or pressed called for this recipe can be found at most oriental groceries in a plastic bag, not in water. Some might be brown from soy sauce, but some white ones are also available. Pick whatever you like.
  • If you decide to include banana flower, cut lengthwise into sections (like orange sections). Rub any open cut with lime or lemon juice to prevent it from turning dark.
  • The original Pad Thai recipe calls for crushed roasted peanuts. Thailand is hot and humid and storage conditions are often sub-optimal, so a certain fungus can grow on peanuts. This fungus is linked to cancer, so many people in Thailand avoid eating peanuts.  
  • One of the big challenges with Pad Thai's measurements is that the flavor densities and characteristics of the 3 core flavor ingredients: fish sauce, tamarind and lime juice vary greatly from brand to brand and purchase to purchase. Plus the salt content of your fish sauce, dried shrimp and preserved turnips will likely differ from ours. You will need to taste this as you're making it and keep the 3 flavors, salty, sweet and sour, in balance to your liking







Thursday, 26 December 2013

Minced pork and Seafood noodles ala Bak Chor Mee



 

Merry Christmas and a prosperous new year everyone!

I miss spending these festive season in the Philippines.  Yes we are back in Qatar, that's why.  Actually, we've been here for almost a month now.  Our vacation of almost a month in the Philippines was quite exhausting and truly stressful.  It wasn't actually a holiday, sad to say. The upside of it was that we spent some time with our families from both sides and I had to undergo internet-detox (wink wink).  





So what have you cooked for your special Christmas dinner?  I bet you had pasta or noodles.  It has become a Filipino tradition, I believe, regardless of wherever part of the world they are in right now, to serve noodles or pasta as part of ones Christmas menu.  As a matter of fact, I did too with my vegetarian pasta.  

Speaking of noodles, here is an Asian noodle recipe that is inspired by a noodle dish my husband and I often eat at one of those food hawker stalls in Singapore, bak chor mee to be specific.  This noodle dish of course is different from the bak chor mee found in Singapore so don't confuse it with it.

If you have been serving pancit canton guisado every special occasion you hold in your house, try this recipe for a change.  Your visitors will surely appreciate the change :-)




     MINCED PORK & SEAFOOD NOODLES
          ala BAK CHOR MEE

Ingredients :

Egg Noodles (dried) - 200 g
Minced Pork - 100 g

Black Pepper Powder
Garlic, minced - 3 cloves
Onions, chopped - 1 small

Sauce :
 
Soy Sauce - 3 tbsp
Balsamic Vinegar - 2 tbsp

Oyster Sauce - 1 tbsp
Sweet Sauce (Dark) - 1 tbps
Water - 1/4 c
Vegetable Oil - 1 tbsp
Sesame Oil - 2 tbsp


Stir-Fried Mixed Seafood :

Mixed Seafood (shrimp, mollusk, squids, etc) - 100 g.
Button Mushroom, thinly sliced - 7 pcs
Kikiam, thinly sliced - 5 pcs
Oyster Sauce - 1 tbsp
Sweet Sauce (Dark) - 1 tbps
Soy Sauce - 1 tbsp
Black Pepper Powder
Garlic, minced - 3 cloves
Onions, chopped - 1 small
Vegetable Oil


Cooking Procedure :


Stir-Fried Mixed Seafood :

1.  Place oil in a pan under low fire.  Add kikiam and mushroom.  Stir-fry for about 2 minutes
2.  Add garlic and onion.  Stir.
3.  Toss in the rest of the ingredient and give a stir for a minute
4.  In a bowl, mix oyster sauce,sweet sauce, and soy sauce then pour it on the seafood mix.  Stir
5.  Simmer for about a few minutes until the mixture is dry

Noodle :

1. Place water in a pot and bring to a boil. Add in the noodles and cook until noodles are soften.  Drain and set aside.

2. Place oil and garlic in a pan under low fire and stir until aromatic.  Add the minced pork and fry it until the meat almost turned brown.  Add in the onions.
3. Season with the black pepper powder.  Toss in the noodles and stir.
4. In a bowl, mix the oyster sauce,sweet sauce, balsamic vinegar, soy sauce, and water then pour it on the noodles.  Stir for a few minutes until most of the liquids have evaporated.
5.  Toss in the stir-fried mixed seafood.  Remove from fire.

Serve with lemon or lime or you can eat it without.


© myFresha-licious (26December2013)





Tuesday, 24 December 2013

Singaporean Inspired Chilli Crabs





December 23, 4am.  I am drafting this post while listening to the loud snoring of my husband.  I'm light headed, my eyes are getting heavy, yet my brains cells are still active. I want to go to sleep but sleep alludes me.  I'm blaming the brewed coffee we had this morning.  I will never have coffee at mcdonald's ever again.

December 24, past 12 noon.  My husband and I just woke up.  We had a wonderful time with friends last night.  Thank you all for coming over.  You made our Christmas spirit alive.  Merry Christmas!

Going back for a few months, last April 4, 2013 to be exact, I cooked this Chilli crabs.  Chilli crabs is a very famous dish in Singapore as well as in Malaysia.  Malaysian Chilli Crabs though are different with that of the Singaporean's.  The difference lies in the sauce:  tomato-based sauce is used for the Singaporean chilli crab and for the Malaysian's recipe tamarind-soy bean based sauce is used (see the recipe of Rasamalaysia ).  Mud crabs or soft shelled crabs are used for the Malaysian and Singaporean Chilli Crabs recipes.  

My chilli crab was inspired by the Singaporean recipe.  It may not taste as close to the Singaporean chilli crabs nor was it prepared the same way as the Singaporeans do it, but it is still delicious on its own. I also used whatever crab we can buy from the supermarket (not sure of the specie :D )


You can check the original Singapore Chilli Crabs recipe of Violet Oon  below this post (I made the liberty to copy and paste it here) 

SINGAPOREAN INSPIRED CHILLI CRABS 
( http://www.myfresha-licious.com/ )

Ingredients : 

Crabs, cut into 2 - 6 to 8 pcs
Ginger - 6 slices
Garlic, coarsely chopped - 5 cloves
Onions, diced - 1 medium
Red Chilli, julienned- 5 pcs or as desired
Water - 1/4 c
Sunflower oil - 1 tbsp

Sauce :

Tomato Catsup - 3 tbsp
low Sodium Salt - 1 tsp or to taste
Brown Sugar - 2 tsp
Black pepper powder
Water - 1/3 c


Cooking Procedure :

1.  Mix sauce together and set aside.
2.  In a wok, place oil, garlic, and red chilli.  Stir.
3.  Add the ginger and stir.  Then add the onions and the crabs.  Continue stirring for a minute or until the crabs changed in color.  Pour 1/4 cup of water and let it simmer for at least 5 minutes under low fire.  Cover the wok.
4. Pour the sauce on the crab.  Simmer for another 10 minutes

Serve with blanched or boiled spinach or pechay or any leafy green vegetables that you have on hand.


© myFresha-licious (24December2013)

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How to Make Singapore Chilli Crab (Original)
(http://www.singaporelocalfavourites.com/2009/09/singapore-chilli-crab-original.html )
Ingredients for Singapore Chilli Crab:
  • 1 lb (450g) mud crabs or soft shelled crabs
  • 4 tbsp plain flour if using soft shelled crabs
  • 3 tbsp vegetable oil*
  • 8 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
  • 8 fresh red chilli, roughly chopped
  • 1 egg
  • 2 spring onions (scallions), cut into finger length
  • 1 tsp freshly squeezed lime or lemon juice
  • 1 small bunch coriander plant (cilantro)
*For soft-shelled crabs, oil for deep frying

Mix together for Sauce
  • 1 cup of water, 5 tbsp tomato catsup, 1 1/2 to 3 tbsp sugar, or according to taste, 1 1/2 tsp cornflour, 1 tsp pounded brown preserved soya beans or dark miso (optional), 1/4 tsp salt
Method
  1. Heat the oil in a wok or shallow saucepan over high heat. 
  2. Add garlic and stir-fry for 1 minute. 
  3. Add the chilli, stir-fry till fragrant. For mud crabs, add at this stage. Fry well till shells start turning red, add sauce ingredients stir well, cover with lid and simmer till shells are red. 
  4. Break eggs into the wok and streak with a fork, simmer till cooked. Squeeze lime juice over and stir in scallions. 
  5. For soft-shelled crabs, cut each crab into four, dry well, dredge in flour and deep fry till golden brown and crispy. Make the sauce as above, but omit the mud crabs. 
  6. Toss soft shelled crabs in sauce just before serving.
Recipe by VIOLET OON
This unofficial ‘national dish’ is usually prepared with fresh succulent crabs in a hearty, sweet and spicy gravy and is best eaten with your fingers! Mop up the mouth-watering gravy with white bread or Chinese mantou (buns).
Photo Credit - Mervin Chiang


Sunday, 22 December 2013

Baked Tangy Sweet Chicken



Just got back from the Traffic office for Snappy's (our car) registration renewal and we're exhausted.  My husband most specially specially that we are short of the required 6-8 hours of sleep.  He has to clear our clogged sink drain in the kitchen in the middle of the night.  You'd be horrified by the amount of fatty deposits that had solidified which he was able to remove.    Almost a foot long! Gosh!

I digress on the horrendous topic of fatty deposits.  I have here is my baked tangy sweet chicken.  By the title itself you can deduce the taste - tangy and sweet, oh, a little bit hot.  When I cooked this dish a few months back, I was actually planning of making buffalo chicken  but this recipe will not qualify as such since buffalo chicken wings are expected to be extra hot hot hot.  Since our friends who are coming over for dinner are not into hot and spicy food, I decided to create a sauce that is sweet and tangy with just a little hint of hotness.  So technically it is not really a buffalo chicken, and so the name of the dish.

Tomorrow, I am planning to cook buffalo chicken wings with the fiery hotness.  I was scouring the supermarkets for a Frank brand hot sauce but found none in the process.  I might just end up using Tabasco sauce plus chili flakes to get the fiery hotness I want.  Anyway, let see what will happen.  I'll keep you posted with the recipe for my buffalo chicken wing.  Meantime, you can try this chicken recipe for your Noche Buena.


     BAKED TANGY SWEET CHICKEN
Ingredients :

Chicken wings or thigh - 16 pcs
Vegetable Oil - 1 tbsp

Breading :

All Purpose Flour - 6 tbsp
Black Pepper Powder - 1/2 tsp
Iodized Salt - 1/2 tsp


Tangy-Sweet Sauce:

Butter - 100 g.
Hot Sauce - 3 tbsp or as desired
Garlic Powder - 1/4 tsp
Black Pepper Powder - 1/4 tsp
Sweet Red Paprika - 1/2 tsp
Worcestershire Sauce - 1//2 tsp
White Vinegar - 1 tbsp
Salt - to taste


Cooking Procedure :

1.  Toss chicken with oil.  Place chicken in a plastic bag.  
2.  Mix all the ingredients for the breading.  Add the breading in the plastic bag and shake it until all the meat are covered.
3.  Bake chicken in a pre-heated oven (180 degrees Celsius) for 15 minutes on both sides or until the meat is cooked through.

Sauce :
4.  Melt butter under low heat then add the sugar, stir until it caramelized. 
5.  Add the rest of the ingredients and simmer until the sauce thickens.



© myFresha-licious (22December2013)

Saturday, 21 December 2013

Malaysian Garlicky Buttered Prawn


Three nights more to go and it's noche buena time.  Time for some quality family bonding over a banquet of  sumptuous food.  Noche buena and Christmas day have always been extra special in our family not only because it's a religious tradition to celebrate the day Christ was born and that it is not only because we are obliged to celebrate it as it is the birthday of our youngest sister but it has become a tradition in our family to be together, gathered around our dining table lined up with whatever food our Mama serves and after which we again gather around our Christmas tree to open our gifts.  Christmases and also New Years are moments when our family is complete and so we take advantage of that. We often look forward to Christmases and New year celebration no matter how simple our "handa" could be.  It's sad however, that I haven't spent several Christmases and New years with my parents and sisters. 

Anyway, should you be banging your head on your stove worrying about what  dish to cook for Christmas,  I can be of help.  You can browse the archive of this blog for hundreds of pork, beef, and chicken recipes you can try.  If you are somewhat like me who has stayed away from pork or other red meat for medical reasons or you are in a red-meat free special diet because if you eat even the tiniest bit of pork or beef, your gut will commit a suicide (no kidding) or whatever reasons you have, I have this delicious shrimp recipe you must try. 






     MALAYSIAN GARLICKY BUTTERED PRAWN

Ingredients  :

Prawns - 15 pcs
Oil for shallow frying
Butter - 2 tbsp
Hot chilli flakes - 1 tbsp
Curry leaves - 1 handful
Garlic, chopped - 10 cloves
Onions, chopped - 1 small
Coconut flakes - 4 tbsp
Salt - 1/4 tsp
Sugar - 1/2 tsp
Soy Sauce - 1/2 tsp
Dry white wine - 1 tbsp

Cooking Procedure :

1. Wash the prawns leave the heads and shells on but chop off the eyes part.  Devein it by slicing the back of the prawn and remove the veins.  Sprinkle salt on the prawns and leave it for at least 30 minutes.
2. Toast the coconut flakes until they turned golden brown.  Set aside
3.  Mix the soy sauce, wine, and sugar. set aside.
3. Heat oil in a wok and shallow fry the prawns. Place the prawns on top of paper towels to drain off the excess oil.
4.  In the same wok, leave at least a tablespoon of the oil used to fry the prawns then add the butter. Melt the butter under low fire.
5.  Add the garlic and the onion and stir until they almost turned brown.  Toss in the chilli flakes, salt, and curry leaves stir until fragrant. 
5.  Add prawns, sauce, and grated coconut. Stir and cook for about 2 minutes. 

Serve it immediately with some noodles or rice



© myFresha-licious (21December2013)