Sunday, 27 December 2009

Asian Cooking Spices

There are a lot of cooking spices range from either Western, Asian Chinese, Indian, Malay, Thai and etc. Each culture has their own signature use of spice. Eg. Thai people will like to use Lemongrass and Lime, where Western will fancy basil and parsley. No matter which group you belong to, there is always a some nice spices that you will pick up with.

"Cinnamon Stick - 肉桂棒" is one of the common recipe found in Nonya, Malay and Chinese Cuisine to be use in making curry, meat roll and even soy sauce duck. While in western country, you might find cinnamon powder being use in making apple pies or use in coffee or tea and etc.

"Cloves - 丁香" can be use in baking, or cooking some of the Indian cuisine and it is usually paired with together with cumin and cinnamon. You can find this commonly use in Biryani and it is normally added whole to enhance the presentation and flavor of the rice.

"Cardamom - 豆冠子" can be use to prevent indigestion and relieve flatulence while some even say that it can sweeten your breath. But no matter what function it has, Cardamom spice is a highly aromatic spice which is most commonly used in Eastern and Arab cuisines. Its unique slightly sweet and savory flavor allows it to be combined with both sweet and savory dishes.

Come across this "Fish Seasoning" spice which caught my attention. I have not seen something like this before which consists of a few types of spices which I am unfamiliar with. From the packaging, I only recognise Black Peppercorns and Cummin, and Fennel Seeds. If you are familiar with this seasoning or you have use this before, do drop me a note so that I can learn and share with the rest of the readers too :) Posted by Picasa



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Wednesday, 23 December 2009

Fu Gui Cai

Saw this very interesting leafy vegetable from the wet market. It seems to look like a bunch of blooming flower with a lot of small leaves attached to it. According to the stall owner, this is called "Fu Gui Cai - 富贵菜". To me it seems like those mini "Xiao Bai Cai" that stick together to form a bouquet of flower. The stall owner told me that, to consume, just remove the individual leaf then clean them as usual and you can stir-fry with either minced garlic or prawns. And this plant, usually can only be found during Chinese New Year season.

So if you happen to see this vegetable, or you already have some ideas about this. Do share your tips and experience with us so that we can learn more about this interesting vegetable.


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Thursday, 10 December 2009

Little Garden

Have you seen this the blue pea flower that is also known as Bunga Telang or Clitoria flower which is usually found in the blue colouring of the Nyonya Kueh such as Pulut Tai Tai and Pulut Inti which is shown in the photo below. These flowers are used as natural food dye and the blue colour looks really lovely in foods.

As you can see from the photo, Pulut Tai Tai is the steam Glutinous Rice (colour with the blue peas flower) and serves with Nyonya Kaya. While Pulut Inti is serves with cooked shredded coconut with gula malak(coconut sugar). They actually soak the dried flowers in water to get the blue colour then soak the glutinous rice with it and steam together with coconut milk to get that blue marble effect.

Recently, one of my mum's neighbour just bought a pot of this local grown Passion fruit Plant at around S$36.00 which young passion fruits attached to it. Passion fruit is a small egg-shaped tropical fruit, which contains several seeds and has wrinkled purple brown rind on maturing. The seeds and the pulp inside, both are edible, making it easier to consume the fruit. Although nowadays we can easily get Passion fruits from local supermarket or fruit stalls, but it is still an interesting sight to look at the real fruit attached on the plant itself. Posted by Picasa

I have also used this fruit in some of my dishes as shown below, so do take a look if you want to know more about them :-

1. Banana & Passion Fruit Chiffon Cake
2. Homemade Banana & Passion Fruit Jam
3. PassionMisu
4. Salmon With Passionfruit Sauce



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Friday, 4 December 2009

Gaint Avocado

Guess what is this! A friend of mine just came back from her Taiwan trip and she actually bought my favourite fruit all the way back to Singapore from Taiwan. When she handed me the goodies bag, I was so shock to see the "Green" fruit. At first glance, I thought it is some Taiwan Mango or Papaya. But to my surprised, my friend told me it was actually "Avocado". When I heard that, I was so shock as I have never seen such a huge fruit before in our local fruit stalls or supermarkets. As you can see from the picture, it is about two/three times the size of the normal avocado that we used to see/find in supermarket.

Avocados are a wonderful fruit containing a mass of vital nutrients needed for a healthy body. It is low in sugar, contain fibre, and are salt free. So if you are interested to know more about this fruit and some wonder recipes that you can follow, do click on the link (HERE) for more details.


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