Chinese Green Bean Dessert Soup 绿豆汤

The wonder, The hunger, And the sound of distant thunder.  ~ “Indian Summer”, Brooks & Dunn (released 2009) Warm, hazy, windless weather prevailed all last week following a few weeks of a cooling trend. This kind of tank-top-and-shorts weather right around Halloween means  it’s Indian summer for us living in California. Soon after it will be time for […]

Honey Walnut Pine Nut Shrimp

“What’s more luscious than cheesecake, roses in bloom and freshly washed hair? Let me count…,” she said to Mr. Goat. ~ DIM SUM SERIES ~ What is about mayonnaise that makes it taste sooo good?  The satisfying ‘mouthfeel’ that food companies strive to imbue in their products, the same reason why crispy chicken, ice cream, chocolate, pecan pie and of course, […]

Taiwanese Ground Pork Rice 卤肉饭

Taiwan Ground Pork Rice image

If you’re going to eat pork, eat it till your mouth drips. ~ Yiddish proverb ~ TAIWAN STREET FOOD SERIES – Part 2 ~ The last time we married east and west over a bucket of Taiwanese Popcorn Chicken amidst the drama of English aristocracy. Today we continue bringing the tastes of Taiwan street food into our homes in California. […]

Pan-Fried Tofu with Egg

Pan-Fried Tofu with Egg

“Silky golden nuggets with a spicy surprise!”  Don’t you just love it when a wrong turn ends up being right, when a mistake turns into an unexpected success, when a kitchen misadventure cooks up a new favorite? That’s what happened the other night – an attempt to save a blooper turned up a surprising appetizer that barely made it […]

Braised Pork Belly 扣肉

Braised Pork Belly

Spices and soy sauces turn this versatile meat into a tender and aromatic dish that melts in the mouth. There is some version of a pork belly recipe on just about every continent and in every cuisine. Maybe not in Arctic and Antarctica, unless pigs fly… and have thick fur. Until then, we have crispy pork belly, roasted pork […]

Easy Claypot Chicken Rice

Browsing through my saved recipes recently, I came across Claypot Chicken Rice on Rasa Malaysia. It brought back memories of my family’s claypot poised over a charcoal stove, slowly cooking stews, broths and savoury dinners. Smoke from the charcoal infused the food with a woodsy, smoky flavour. The claypot kept heat and moisture in long after the food was cooked. The pot was […]

Okra and Tofu

We have a love-hate relationship with okra. Lip-smackingly good when deep fried in southern style (Hush Puppies and Fried Okra, anyone?), comfortably filling in rich gumbo, tantalizingly spicy in bhindi masala. Yet the thought of inevitable slimy fingers can be a deterrent.  Then like smoky, late afternoon rays filtering through loose, leafy canopies, I chanced […]

Steamed Tofu with Ground Pork and Gogi Berries

Tofu – the ‘miracle’ source of protein from soy that has zero fat and low in calories. Depending on what texture you are seeking, there are silken, soft, firm, rough versions and a slew more in between. There are fresh, fermented, fried, pickled ones to suit different needs. For all its versatility, tofu has only […]

Snap Vegetable Soup

One hour. That was how much time I had to conjure a healthy lunch. Here’s the thing: I do not generally plan for lunches. I am usually the only one at home during the day and I am pretty easy to feed: oatmeal with wheat-germ and blueberries, leftovers from the previous night, cereal with a splash of milk, […]

All-Essential Condiment: Sambal Belachan

Always accompanying Southeast Asian food, belachan is a mainstay in cuisine from south of China, to Thailand, to Malaysia, to Singapore, to Indonesia and to reaches far and in-between. Needless to say, as Straits-cooking is a fusion of Malay, Chinese and Dutch influences, it is an essential condiment to nyonya or Peranakan food.  At its heart […]