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Sunday, November 25, 2018

Hae Bee not Hiam


I recently bought a tub of Hae Bee Hiam (Prawn Sambal) from a blogger and it left me wanting for more, in part because it was too ‘sweet’ for my liking. So, it is back to the kitchen to sort things out.

This recipe is easy to follow since it takes the mortar out of the equation. I went easy on the chilli padi (I omitted it and substituted with an extra handful of dried seedy red chilli) but the concoction  still was too spicy for my liking until I added the enormous amount of shredded dried prawns. In the end, there was too much prawns for that amount of chilli which I like! Other than hubby who decided it was anything but ‘Hiam’ (aka spicy), I decided it is good enough to go with nothing but a bowl of rice or plain bread.

I would repeat this again if I get to finish the huge tub of HBH.

Adapted from MeatMen

250g Dried shrimps, blanched with boiling water and drained.

20 or so shallots, blanched in hot water and peeled
4 cloves of garlic, blanched in hot water and peeled
A handful of candlenuts
1 Tbsp of belachan, crushed
1 cup of dried red chilli, blanched and drained
4 stems of tender lemon grass, finely sliced

1 Tbsp brown sugar
4 lime leaves, stripped of midrib, finely chopped

In a food processor, minced the shrimps until it appear uniformly shredded.
Dry fry (without oil) the shrimps until dry and appear loose.

Put the contents of (B) in the processor.
Minced until it appears homogenous.
Fry, with reasonable amount of oil, on medium heat until mixture turns fragrant.

Add ( C ) and stir fry.
Add shrimps and fry until well mixed and fragrant.

Cool well before storing.
Great on plain rice and bread.


Friday, November 23, 2018

Almond coconut biscotti

I made this after a couple of low-sugar episodes left me ‘stranded’ during my walks. The contents are tiered towards a immediate to gradual release of sugar unto the system and a spot of protein for fullness until I get back to base safely.

This recipe turns out to be less sweet than I wanted but works well if I am dunking it into a sweet malted drink. The biscotti travels well and should hold up for the usual 10km walks. Next time, I will add some raisins/cranberries for more sensory surprise.

Adapted from here.

125g wholemeal wheat flour
30g almond flour
3g baking powder
Pinch of sea salt

50g almond slivers, toasted
30g unsweetened coconut flakes, toasted

2 medium eggs
1/8 tsp vanilla extract
60g brown sugar

Reserve a tray line with silicon sheet.
Combine ingredients listed in A. Reserve.
Combine ingredients listed in B. Reserve.

In a stand mixer, whisk (balloon whisk) eggs for 1 minute or very fluffy.
Add vanilla, brown sugar and whisk for another 2 minutes.

Replace the whisk with a paddle.
Add dry ingredients and mix until contents come together.
Finally, add almond and coconut. Mix until contents just turn homogenous.

Make out 2 logs. The logs are sticky so work with lightly dusted hands.
Place on the baking tray, with a generous space in between logs.

Bake in a preheated oven at 150C for 50 minutes.
Remove to cool both logs on a rack until logs are cool to handle.
Use a serrated knife and cut diagonally, making out 1-1.5 cm thick biscotti slices.
Return the cut biscotti to the baking tray.
Bake each side of the biscotti at 150C for 10-11 minutes.

Cool well before storing.

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Taiwanese beef noodles

This lengthy recipe is less complicated than it looks. The secret of the umami taste lies in the caramelisation of the sugar and soy sauces. Sugars burns easily (whether it is sugar or soy sauce) once it reaches caramelisation stage so keep watch over that fire on the stove.

This recipe tastes so good I finished it in no time, a shame considering how long I had to wait for it to cook.

½ kg chuck beef – cut to chunky cubes
2 tablespoons Chinese wine
2 knobs of ginger

2 tablespoons white sugar

4 cloves of garlic
1 medium red onion, cut into 6 wedges
1 cinnamon stick
2 star anise
A couple of dried chilli pods
2 knobs of ginger
2 big bay leaves
1 tbsp tomato paste
1 tbsp miso paste
1 tbsp Szechuan chilli paste
1 sprig of scallions

2 tablespoons dark soya sauce
2 tablespoons light soy sauce
2 tablespoons Chinese wine

Soaked black fungus (at least 2 hours)
2 huge portions of bok choy
2 portions of noodles of your choice

A dash of sesame oil
Fried crispy onions
Red chilli paste (optional)

Parboiling the beef:
Place (A) in a pot of cold water, the meat completely submerged.
Bring to a rolling boil for 10 minutes.
Skim off scum and drain the water. Wash the meat until it is clear of scum.
Drip dry on a colander.

Caramelisation of the beef:
Heat a pot to medium high heat. Add 2 tablespoons of oil.
Sear the beef on all sides.
Push the beef aside in the pot.
Reduce the heat to LOW heat.
Add sugar. Cook until sugar caramelises.
Cook the meat with the caramel until every surface is coated.
Add the rest of (B). Fry on MEDIUM heat until it is fragrant.

Now add (C ).
Toss contents to mix with the wine/soy sauce until the contents appear dry but not burnt.
Add 2 bowls of cold water and bring to a boil on HIGH heat.

Slow cooking:
Transfer the contents to a slow cooker.
Cook on HIGH for 3 hours. 30 minutes before timeout, add the black fungus into the slow cooker.
The beef is ready when it can be broken with a pair of chopstick.

To serve:
Prepare the serving bowl by adding 2 ladles of the beef broth. Reserve.

In a big pot, bring water to a rolling boil.
Add noodles and cook according to specified time.
One minute before timeout, add the greens.
Drain the noodles and greens.

Transfer the noodles and greens onto the serving bowl with prepared broth.
Top the noodles with broth and beef.
Garnish with (E).
Serve hot.