Saturday, August 8, 2009

Dried Shrimp Sambal Sauce

Everu Tuesday The Star newspaper will have a column in the StarTwo section where Amy Beh will have recipes following a certain theme(maybe quiche week or chilly week or something) or answering people's queries for recipes with related recipes.

The latest Tuesday(which is a couple of days ago duh) she had recipes on various sambals or chilli paste, matching certain types of food recommendation.

Since Mom decided to fry bee hoon with crab today, I wanted to make this dried shrimp sambal sauce as accompaniment to the bee hoon. The recipe can be viewed here.

I followed the recipe, but left out the 6 red chillies because I didn't have them on hand. I find out that this is crucial to give the sauce the vibrant red colour as in the picture. Oh well, the bird's eye chillies(or cili padi) gave the sauce the taste anyway, and that's what I'm looking for.
I used belacan cubes, so I had to roast them according to Mom. I've double checked with dear Uncle Google and she's right. Roasting the cubes actually enhances the flavour of the sauce! MMmmm~

I don't have an inkling what calamansi limes are, so I just plucked some limes from the lime trees in my porch area and squeeze the juice out, omitting the seeds.
Amazingly the belacan cubes actually get whizzed in the food processor, I was thinking its impossible since they became hard like nails after roasting.
The tomato took a while to get blended. At that time I couldn't wait to dig in to the bee hoon already. But being a chilli fan I had to finish what I started just to enjoy eating bee hoon with great chilli sauce!

It was worth the wait and the hardwork(try de-skinning and slicing 3 cloves of garlic will you) as now I have tasty chilli sauce waiting to accompany my next meal. Till next time...

Singaporean Bee Hoon

There was an article about Singaporean bee hoon in the New Straits Times newspaper some time ago, and seeing that I liked most things bee hoon, decided to give the recipe a try.

Boy was I in for a surprise.

Unlike my previous experiences of making dry mee suah and dry black sauce instant noodles (similar to IndoMee), frying bee hoon takes a whole lot more than just "frying".

All went well until it was time to add the bee hoon that Mom helped me soak into the frying pan to be mixed and cooked among the other ingredients. The bee hoon stayed there, rebellious to my trying to separate the strands to get the other stuff mixed around thoroughly.
In the end I had to ditch the wooden flat-head spoon I was using to mix the bee hoon and opted for chopsticks, a pair each in both my hands, and I started to do a method similar to when ppl do "lou sang" during Chinese New Year.
The good part is, it worked!
The bad part is, I had random ingredients flying out of the pan as well(not much, but obvious enough. Left hand coordination sucks).

Verdict: I felt that it wasn't salty enough. But family members said it was okay. I suspect its cause of all the workout I went through preparing the dish that my body must've run low on salt(lost in sweat, remember?).
All in all, now I know how tedious it is to prepare anything bee hoon. Except soup. But this doesn't stop my love for Singaporean bee hoon YUM!

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Breadmagic - Wholemeal Bread

Okay I know this is weird but I swear I did take photos of this bread, seeing that I've made it more than twice.
But I can't find the photos!
So I guess this is going to be a photo-less post. The outcome looks similar to the one pictured the the book so I'm not complaining :)

The most surprising part was, my family members actually ate the bread, and proclaimed it good stuff (they never eat whole grain anything).

Its quite tasty right out of the oven (am always tempted to pinch one while its still piping hot ouch!). Best slattered with abit of butter while hot then carefully cherishing each bite. This bread is not one to let you down! :D
Can be eaten plain, turned into a sandwich or buttered or jammed for teatime, whichever suits the time and taste :)

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Coconut Jelly

With July(okay so now its August) raging its ever-scorching heat upon us, one would think "Hmm a nice cup of refreshing coconut juice will do the trick!"

Well, what if I tell you there's something else slightly (well, I *may* be pushing this) better than that??

The first time I tasted it, it was at a morning market. Father bought some home because it was a hot day and, well, *it* was the perfect thing next to coconut juice.
It's actually Coconut Jelly! And it was made it the coconut shell where the juice and flesh of the coconut came from, so you can still scrape bits of the coconut flesh off the inside of the coconut shell.

Tasty eh? Weird how I never thought or even attempted to try to make my own at home.
But wait.
Just two days ago, I came across a link to this here blog: Elinluv's Titbits Corner
She attempted to make the jellies and voila! Refreshing Coconut Jellies for you to savour during a hot afternoon!

I just made mine yesterday afternoon. Happened to pass by a man selling coconuts, so Father bought two young orange (not sure what's the difference between the green and the orange coconuts but...) coconuts for me to attempt the recipe.

I was clueless on how to make the sugar syrup(yes I am hopeless) so I consulted Uncle Google.
Turns out to be one part sugar two parts water boiled till the sugar dissolved, then it becomes sugar syrup. I added a screwpine/pandan leaf in mine during boiling stage since the recipe said "sugar syrup with pandan flavour".

Then boiled the coconut juice, sugar syrup and agar-agar powder, strain and left to cool before putting into bowls (I put mine into two metal bowls and one plastic tupperware). The amount of agar-agar powder does not result in a firm agar-agar, which is fine because I love soft agar-agar :D

When cooled, the mixture doesn't firm up until placed in the refridgerator. The recipe says 4 hours at least for firming but mine firmed within an hour and a half.

Overall, the jelly is good(and soft so thumbs up to this recipe!)! Although I've already added about 9 tablespoons on sugar syrup and it still wasn't sweet (just a slight tinge). However, the jellies tasted a tad sour (perhaps it's because of the orange coconuts?). Still, youngest sister gobbled up most of the agar-agar :D she seems to like it very very much.

**P.S. Many thanks to Elin of Elinluv's Titbits Corner for the recipe. You're a lifesaver on a hot day! ;)