Thursday, September 18, 2014

Lemon Garlic Shrimp Rice Porridge

Congee is another name for rice porridge or rice soup, it's very popular in Asian countries. Culture also often dictates the way rice porridge is cooked or eaten. For many families in Asia, a typical day begin with a bowl of rice porridge.

Lemon garlic shrimp rice porridge

Although rice porridge come from humble beginning, today it is served with a variety of exotic toppings. A soupy porridge made with rice, water, ingredients of your choice like vegetables, tofu, fish, meat, chicken, seafood and other ingredients is one comfort food you don't have to feel guilty about downing on a regular basis.

Lemon Garlic Shrimp Rice Porridge.

Marinate 50gm prawn with 1 tsp sugar, 1 tsp soy sauce and 1/4 tsp pepper.                                        
2 cloves garlic- chopped coarsely

Chopped spring onion for garnishing.

Spring onions were grown in Chinese gardens 5000 years ago! Do you know the onion bulb was worshiped as the symbol of the universe by ancient Egyptians?
Nutritionally, green onions have a combination of the benefits of onions and greens. They are an excellent source of vitamin K and vitamin C, and a very good source of vitamin A too.

Some the health benefits of spring onion are as follows:-
1/ Lower the blood sugar level.
2/ It is a support against gastrointestinal problem and common flu.
3/ It speed up the level of blood circulation in the body. 

Celery for garnishing.

Celery is rich in Vitamin A,C,D,E,K, B6,B12 and mineral such as calcium, sodium, copper, magnesium, iron, zinc, potassium, fibre, etc....

Some health benefit of celery are as follow:-
1/ Lower cholesterol
2/ Prevent cancer
3/ Weight loss
4/ Detoxifies the body
5/ Reduce low blood pressure

Carrot - cut julienne

The benefits of carrot can be attributed to their beta carotene, fibre contents and antioxidant agent. Carrots are rich in vitamin A,c,K,B8, pantothenic acid, folate, potassium, iron, copper and manganese.

Some of the health benefits of carrots are as follow:-
Reduce risk of stroke, boosts immune system, improves eye sight, prevent heart disease, lower risk of degeneration, facilitate digestion, reduce blood pressure, prevent cancer, regulate blood sugar level in body.

Lemon - use approximate 1 tbsp lemon juice for each serving of rice porridge.

As a refreshing drink, lemonade help you to stay calm and cool.
Extract the juice of 3 tomatoes + 1 lemon in the juicer, add 1 to 2 tsp honey and drink immediately 30 mins before breakfast.

Drink this power juice 2 to 3 times a week help in improve the skin and weight loss. It help to bring glow in your complexion internally and prevent aging.

1/  Heat up 1 tbsp of oil, stir fry chopped garlic until golden brown.
2/  Add the prawn and half the carrot, stir fry until prawn is cook. Keep aside.

1/2 cup of Jasmine fragrant rice, wash and rinse 3 times.

1/ Cook half cup of rice with approximate 3 cups of water and 1 cube of chicken stock in a heavy bottom pot.
2/  When boil, remove the lid immediately cos the water will bubble out of the lid or you'll have a hard time cleaning the mess.

There are basically 3 consistency of rice porridge thick, medium, thin and it depend on the rice-water ratio. While the rice porridge is roaring boil, you really can't leave the kitchen or else you will end up seeing something like this>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

This is my pot, disaster happen last week while I caramelized the sugar. While cooking I was playing with my tablet and totally forgotten about it until I smell something burning.

OMG....I nearly more end up like this........

3/ Use a ladle to stir occasionally to scrap the bottom of the pot to loosen the rice grains that sticks at the bottom of the pot. Add the balance carrot.
4/  Cook the rice porridge according to the consistency you like, usually it takes about about 25 to 40 mins. Remove from heat, stir in the cook prawn, add pepper and lemon juice to taste.

Garnish rice porridge with spring onion and celery. You can add a dash of chilli flakes to enhance the flavor.

This Lemon garlic shrimp rice porridge is a very appetizing one pot meal. Great for breakfast or light lunch.

Season everything with love.

Another version of rice porridge......

Rice porridge is very versatile, you can add any ingredients according to your preference. Bean sprout with garlic shrimp and lemon juice taste good in rice porridge too. This is one of my favorite.

Bean sprout. Remove the tail, wash and drain dry.

Sprouts have always been in the list of healthy and nutrition foods.They are highly concentrated with enzymes, richest source of proteins, moisture, vitamins A, B, C, D, E & K and minerals.

The health benefit of bean sprouts are as follow:-
Anemia, cardiovascular healthy, constipation, hair & nail fragility, liver health, menopause, skin anti aging effect, stress and tiredness.

Hot rice porridge can be a hearty and comfort meal on a cold day. But no matter how hot and humid, I still love hot rice porridge.

After lunch all time favorite.

Cream Puff

125mls milk
125mls water
4 eggs
165gm cake flour - sift
100gm salted butter

1/  Combine milk, water and butter cook over medium low heat until butter is melt and bring to boil.
Remove from heat. Add the flour and stir vigorously until well blend. Preferably use a wooden ladle.
2/ Return to stove using medium heat, continue stirring until flour mixture pull away from side of the pan and form a ball. Let the mixture cool for 5 mins.

3/  Add egg one at a time and beat until incorporated. After each egg is added, the mixture will separate and lumpy.
4/  Beat the mixture with cake mixer until the dough is smooth and shinny.  Let the dough rest for 10 mins.

5/ Line the baking tray with grease proof paper and grease lightly.
You can piped through a pastry bag or dropped with a pair of tablespoons to form into a balls..

Homemade cream puffs, they are not hard to make but hard to stop eating.
I eat way to many at one go.... minimum SIX!!! (>‿◠)✌

6/  Bake at 200 deg c in the preheat oven for 15 mins, Then reduce to 180 deg c for 15 mins or until golden brown. ( Don't open the oven door while the puff are baking.) Remove from oven, make a small slit to allow steam to escape.
7/  Switch off the oven, put back the puff leave the door ajar and leave the puff inside the oven for another 15 mins.
8/ Transfer to wire rack and let the puff cool completely.

9/ Split the puff into half, fill with cream patisserie. Sieve some icing sugar on top the cream puff and serve immediately.

Cream Patisserie

240mls milk
50gm castor sugar
4 egg yolks
25gm salted butter
1 tbsp all purpose flour
1 tbsp custard powder
1 tsp vanilla extract

1/  Beat egg yolk with sugar till sugar dissolved. Add in the custard powder and flour, mix well till no lump.
2/  Boil the milk till simmering boil, pour half the milk to the egg yolk mixture to temper the eggs.

3/  Mix the rest of the milk to yolk mixture and bring to boil over low medium heat. Stir constantly to prevent burn at the bottom.
4/  Cook until thick and glossy. Remove from heat.
5/  Stir in the butter till melted and mix well. Cover with cling wrap immediately to prevent skin forming and leave to cool. Chill in fridge till ready to use.

How could anyone turn down a delightful cream puff?  One bite in your mouth, blink your eyes 3 times and you can hear the bird singing ★*˚°。°*。°*。★*˚°。°*。°˚°★*˚°。°*。°*★*˚°。°*。°*★  ✫ ✫ ✫. `⋎´✫¸.•°*”˜˜”*°•✫ ..✫¸.•°*”˜ ✫ ✫ ✫. `⋎´✫¸.•°*”˜˜”*°•✫ ..✫¸.•°*”˜ (✿◠‿◠) 

A balanced diet always end with desserts.

Have a wonderful week ahead, cheers!

Thursday, July 31, 2014

When your hubby invites his boss home for dinner.....

I would like to take this opportunity to wish my Muslim Friends a Selamat Hari Raya.

When your hubby invites his boss home for dinner....
Something unexpected. A satay dinner.

Satay: Tracing its origins to the Arabs, the satay has been adapted to the multi-cultural palates of Asians with various spicy sauces and different ways of marinating the meat.

Satay dinner

Origins: Arabs were known to skewer their meat on swords before roasting and Middle Eastern nomads would barbecue their meat on metal skewers in a dish known as kebab or sharwarma.

Kebab. Picture with compliments from a friend.

The spice trade brought Arab traders to Southeast Asia and led to the spread of Arab culinary culture to the Indonesians and eventually to Malaya. The kebab or sharwarma has also spread to India and even Beijing residents can savour fiery flavored kebabs today. However, a key adaptation of the dish in Asia is that wooden rather than metal skewers are used for the satay.

Kebab. Picture with compliments from a friend.

The satay sauce, made from ground peanuts and other spices, was first introduced in the Philippines by the Spanish from South America. It is used to marinate the pieces of satay meat, with the remaining sauce served as a dip with the grilled meat.

Serve satay with this sweet and fragrant peanut sauce.

Chicken Satay
2 pieces chicken breast meat
30 sticks bamboo skewer - soak in water for 5 hours
1 stalk lemon grass - bashed to resemble a brush

Marinate Ingredients
3 cloves garlic
5 pieces shallots
1/2 in blue ginger
1 tsp coriander powder
1 tsp cumin powder
1 tsp fennel powder
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
2 tsp salt
2 tbsp brown sugar/ castor sugar

1/  Wash and pat dry the chicken breast meat.
2/  Slice thinly approximate 3/4 in width x 2 in length.
3/  Pound / blender the garlic, shallots and blue ginger until very fine.

My faithful 30 years old mortar & pestle.

4/  Marinate the slice chicken meat with all the marinate ingredients. Cover with cling wrap and keep in fridge for 1 day or over night.

5/  Skewer the chicken meat onto the bamboo skewer. Don't pack the meat too close together.

6/  For best flavor, grill it over a charcoal grill. But you can still grill it using electric oven.
7/  Dip the lemon grass in cooking oil, baste the satay 2 to 3 times and grill until cook. Don't over cook the satay.

8/ Serve the satay with cucumber, onions, compressed rice and peanut sauce.

Peanut Sauce
200gm peanuts
2 stalks lemon grass
1in blue ginger
8 dried chillies
4 candle nuts
4 cloves garlic
6 shallots
200 mls thick coconut milk
150mls - 200mls water
2 pieces tamarind - soak in hot water
1/2 tbsp curry powder
1 tsp coriander powder
1 tsp cumin powder
1 tsp fennel powder
1/4 cup oil
1 tsp salt
3 - 4  tbsp sugar

1/  Roast the peanuts until brown, remove the husk and pounded till grainy texture.
2/  Cut the lover segment of the lemon grass and cut into small pieces. Keep the lemon grass leave.
3/  Soak the dried chilli in hot water until soft. Remove the seed and pound until very fine.
4/  Blend the garlic, shallots, lemon grass, blue ginger and candle nuts with a bit of water into a fine paste.
5/  Heat up the oil, stir fry the chilli paste for 5 mins, add the blended paste from number (4),  keep stirring for 8 mins.

6/  Add the lemon grass leaves, curry powder, coriander powder, cumin powder, fennel powder, tamarind and water. Let it boil for 5 mins then add the thick coconut milk.
7/ Add salt and sugar to taste, simmer the sauce until slightly thicken. Remove from heat and enjoy.

To make compressed rice/ ketupat
Ketupat is made from rice that has been wrapped in a coconut leaf pouch and boiled. As the rice cooks, the grains expand to fill the pouch and the rice becomes compressed.

1/ Remove the spine of the young coconut leaf with a paring knife, so that the leaf are split into two ribbon like pieces. Wipe the leaf with a damp towel.
Make 3 loops on your left hand and do the same on your right hand. Make sure that the tail of the leaf on your right hand is on the opposite direction of the leaf on your left.

2/  Hold 3 loops on each hand.

3/  This is where it  get tricky. Fold the 1st loop of leaf on your right and weave it to the 1st loop on your left.

4/  Do the same to the 2nd and 3rd loop. The trick is keep weaving in and out.

5/ After weaved all the 6 loops, this is how it look like.

6. Make a U turn for the wider tail and weave it then make sure both the wider tail meet at the end of the diagonal.

7/ Repeat the other wider end, follow step 6.

8/  Tighten the pouch by adjusting and pulling both end of the tails. Tuck the wider end neatly.

My coconut leaves pouch is ready.
You can refer here for the step by step tutorial to weave the coconut leave pouch. Or you can play around with satin ribbon to weave the pouch.

Wash the rice and toss of access water.
Filled the ketupat pouch with uncooked rice at the top opening of the pouch. Filled till 3/4 full, as the rice cooks the grains expand to fill the pouch and the rice become compressed.

After filled with rice, tied the long end of the tail together.

Boil a big pot of water with 2 tsp salt, cook the ketupat for 3 hours. Top up with hot water when necessary, making sure that the rice pouch are immerse in the boiling water.

When cooked, remove and leave it to cool. Best to serve the compressed rice after 8 to 10 hours.

Best to use Thai variety rice cos the texture is more compact and smooth.

Remove the leaf and cut into cubes.

Serve the compressed rice with peanut sauce and chicken or prawn satay.

If you don't have coconut tree at home ........

or you can't find any coconut trees nearby your home......

Stulang Laut beach 15 mins drive from my home, across the sea is Singapore.

There is another way to make the compressed rice.

1/  Wash 2 cup of rice, boil the rice with 1 tsp of salt and 3 cup of water until the rice is soft and water evaporate. Remove from heat and keep in the pot for 15 mins.
2/  Spread out rice in a greased cake tin. Cover with cling wrap, use the base of the glass to compressed the rice hard. Put weight on it.
3/  Leave it for 8 to 10 hours in room temperature. Cut into cube and serve with satay and peanut sauce.

Or you can use ready packed compressed rice. Just drop in a pot of hot water and boil it for 30 mins.

My chicken satay is ready to be serve.

Another way of making satay....Prawns satay salad. Marinate the prawns for 6 to 8 hours. Grill the prawns for 4 to 5 mins until cooked.

Peel the prawn shell, squeeze the lemon on the grilled prawn to enhance the flavor. Serve with lettuce, cucumber, onions and tomato.

If you like, you can grill the satay till slightly charred to get the mild smokey scent.

​Have these prawn crackers for gossip chat tidbits while waiting for the satay to cook.....​

Have a wonderful week ahead.