Wednesday, 1 April 2020

Roasted pumpkin soup (南瓜湯)

Most of my dinner guests love this pumpkin soup probably because of the roasted flavour and taste. Just add a spoonful of fresh cream and chopped parsley on top before serving.

pumpkin (南瓜) is sometimes called a squash or a gourd. It is usually round with smooth, slightly ribbed yellow or orange coloured skin and a concave top and bottom. In China the pumpkin skin is green in colour and they also have a long shape variety. The flesh is normally a deep yellow to orange coloration. It is rich in vitamins A, E, C and some B vitamins. Pumpkin is a great source of potassium, calcium and magnesium. It is low in calories so is suitable for dieters. In TCM, pumpkin is considered warm in nature, and a food that affects spleen and stomach. It is also used for the expulsion of tape worms


1 small pumpkin
3 potatoes
1 white onion
1 medium sized carrot

Cut all the vegetables into chunks
Put into a baking tray

Ground salt and pepper to taste
2 tbsp olive oil
A few sprigs of fresh rosemary
Mix thoroughly

Preheat the oven at 250 C
Place in the preheated oven and bake until the vegetables are soft

Remove from the oven and let it cool down

Transfer into the blender and blend until smooth
You may need to do it in batches if the blender cannot take all of it in one go

Transfer the pureed vegetables into a pot

Add 1 can of chicken broth and more water if the soup is too thick
Mix thoroughly
Simmer on low heat for about 5 mins and it is ready to serve

You can freeze any leftovers for future use
Spoon enough soup for 1 person into a plastic bag

Flatten the soup and fold the plastic over

Place the prepared bags of soup onto a tray and put into the freezer

Tuesday, 7 January 2020

Beef and long beans fried rice

I had a piece of left-over beef steak which is not enough for a family meal, so the best thing to do is use it to fry rice with left over long beans. It turned out to be a nice combination and the children loved it. I found that by adding soy sauce to the rice before frying makes it more flavourful and tasty. 

Long beans
Cooked piece of beef steak
Cooked rice
1 egg

Put the rice into a large bowl and add a little soy sauce and pepper

Mix the rice thoroughly and rub until there are no lumps in the rice

Slice the beef into bite size pieces

Cut the long beans into bite size pieces

Break the egg into a bowl.
Add salt and pepper and beat up the mixture

Heat a little oil in the wok
Pour in the egg mixture and let it set a little
Turn the egg over and break it into small pieces
Remove and set aside

Heat 1 tbs cooking oil with a little sesame oil
Add the garlic and fry till fragrant

Put in the rice and fry until it is thoroughly mixed
Remove and put aside

Put a little more oil in the wok.
Add the long beans and mix thoroughly

When the beans are cooked put in the beef slices and stir to mix everything together

Add the rice and mix thoroughly

Put the egg back into the rice and mix thoroughly
Dish up and serve
Transfer to the rice cooker to keep warm if not eating immediately

Monday, 4 November 2019

Clear fish soup with tofu

Fish soup is so healthy for the bones especially for small children and elderly folks at home. You can add any ingredients and I like tofu because it is full of proteins. 

1 large piece of fish fillet
Fish bones (you can buy this from the fish monger or collect it every time you fillet your fish)
1 packet tofu

Cut the fish bones into smaller pieces
Wash the fish bones

Blanch the fish bones to remove the scum and remove from the pot

Boil the required amount of water you need for the soup
Add a few slices of ginger to reduce the fishy smell

Put the clean fish bones into the pot and let it simmer for 2 hours or more

Clean and cut the fish fillet into bite size pieces

Mix together the marinate:
1 tsp light soy sauce
Dash of sesame oil
Dash of pepper

Put the marinate onto the fish and mix thoroughly
Set aside until ready to use

Remove the fish bones when the fish stock is ready

Cut the tofu into cubes and put into the soup

Add the marinated fish slices
Simmer on low fire until the fish is cooked

Dish out and serve
Garnish with some chopped spring onions if desired

Thursday, 12 September 2019

Sambal prawns and sotong with petai

Most people cook either sambal prawn or sambal sotong. I decided to combine the prawns and sotong since it uses the same sambal paste and to give it that extra oomph, I threw in some petai. The chilli paste that I used turned out quite tasty so I will use it again.
10 large prawns (peeled and cleaned)
1 pre-soaked sotong cut into bite size pieces
1 big onion (sliced)
Petai beans (amount depends on how much each person likes to eat)

Today I am trying out the Prima Taste sambal chilli sauce which I got from Singapore

Boil the sotong until soft.
Drain and put aside.

Heat up some oil and pour the chilli paste into it

Fry the chilli paste until fragrant then add the onions

Stir until onions are slightly soft
Add the petai and some water and salt to taste

Add the prawns and sotong
Mix thoroughly and stir until prawns are cooked

Dish out and serve with white rice or nasi lemak

Tuesday, 23 July 2019

Bean sprouts or taugeh (豆芽) with bean curd

Mung bean sprouts are crunchy and delicious when lightly stir fried. You can just flavour it with garlic and soy sauce or add other ingredients such as salted fish, chicken strips, tofu or any other choices that you like. Today I am frying the bean sprouts with bean curd (taukwa).

The 2 main types of bean sprouts are produced from the seeds of mung beans and soybeans. Mung bean sprouts have smaller stems and a small soft bean with a greenish tint. Soybean sprouts have longer stems and a larger, firm bean with a yellowish tint. It is a healthy food that is loaded with vitamins A, B, C, D, E and K, minerals such as iron, potassium, calcium, phosphorous, magnesium and zinc, and it is absolutely cholesterol free. It is best to use sprouts on day of purchase or the following day. Do not use sprouts that are slimy or have changed colour. According to TCM, mung sprouts is good for treating diarrhoea and painful swelling because of its heat and toxin clearing properties. 

2 pieces of bean curd
200 gm bean sprouts

I like to remove the tails because it looks better when cooked. Soak the sprouts for 5 minutes then rinse thoroughly.

Cut the bean curd (taukwa) into fairly thick strips

Heat up some oil and fry the bean curd until slightly golden brown in colour.

Remove the bean curd and set aside.

Leave sufficient oil in the wok to fry the bean sprouts. Put in 1 tbsp chopped garlic and fry until it starts to brown. Add the bean sprouts and stir-fry for about 2-3 minutes. 

Add the bean curd and mix thoroughly. Season with 1 tsp light soy sauce, salt and pepper to taste

Do not overcook the bean sprouts as they will release a lot of moisture and lose the crisp and crunchy texture.

Take out the children’s portion. Add some cut red chillies onto the remaining sprouts. This is for the adults.

You can serve the children's portion in a separate dish or next to the adult portion in one dish