Saturday, October 10, 2009

Claypot Chicken Rice

Yet another popular dish in Ipoh is Claypot Chicken Rice. This one-pot rice meal dish is also found elsewhere in foodcourts around the country.

The pot arrives at the table piping hot, and once the lid is lifted, you would be hit with the aroma of the chicken and its sauce, dried fish and Chinese sausages sending those salivary glands into overdrive.


500g (2 pieces) chicken whole leg


¼ tsp dark soy sauce

1 tbsp oyster sauce

¼ tsp ground white pepper

1 tbsp ginger juice

1 tsp sugar

1 tsp sesame oil

1 tsp cornflour

½ tsp salt

300g long grain rice

420ml water

sauce (mixed together)

1 tbsp oyster sauce

½ tbsp dark soy sauce

1 tbsp light soy sauce

2 tbsp hot water

1 tsp sesame oil

½ Chinese sausage (lap cheong), sliced

2 pieces salted fish (optional)

chopped spring onions for garnishing

Cut chicken into smaller pieces. Combine the marinade ingredients and marinate chicken in it for one hour in the refrigerator.

Wash the rice in several changes of water and place into a claypot with 420ml water. Cook, covered, over medium heat, until water is almost absorbed. Add the chicken with its marinade, the Chinese sausage and salted fish (if using), over the rice, and drizzle in about two tablespoons of the sauce. Lower the heat and cook, covered, until rice and chicken are cooked, about 10-15 minutes. Flake rice, cover lid and cook for a further five minutes. Remove from heat and top with spring onions. Serve immediately.

Source: The Star

Salt-baked Chicken (Yim Kok Kai)

Salt-baked Chicken (Yim Kok Kai) is another famous food in Ipoh. It has its origins in the Hakka community.


1 kg organic or free-range chicken, washed and patted dry


1 tbsp ginger juice

1 tbsp Chinese cooking wine

½ tsp ground white pepper

1 tsp sugar


20g codonopsis root (dong sum)

10g angelica root (dong quai)

1 tbsp wolfberries (kei chi)

15g Solomon’s seal (yok chok)

2 pieces greaseproof paper measuring 60x30cm

1 tbsp potato flour, mixed into a gum paste with a little hot water

3.5 kg coarse rock salt

Combine the marinade ingredients; rub or coat chicken with the marinade. Wash the stuffing ingredients and place into the cavity of the bird.

Set the chicken on the two pieces of parchment paper for a double-layer wrap. Fold the paper, overlapping, around the chicken to form a parcel. Seal with the gum paste to form a water-tight parcel.

Place the rock salt into an old wok. Heat salt over medium flame, stirring continuously for five to eight minutes. Make a well in the middle of the hot salt, place the chicken parcel in, and cover completely with salt. Cook, covered with a lid, over low heat for 35 to 40 minutes. Turn chicken over once halfway through the cooking time, making sure no juices spill out. Remove and serve warm.

Source: The Star

Ipoh Hor Fun (Rice Noodles with Chicken)

Mention Ipoh and it is not tin that comes to mind but food. Yes, Ipoh was once famous for tin-mining but now the city is known more for her famous food particularly, the white coffee, hor fun, and bean sprouts-chicken.

Ipoh is a city in the northern state of Perak. It can be accessed by road via the North-South Expressway which will take about two and a half hours, or by KTM shuttle train from KL Sentral.

As Ipoh is so easily accessible, many people from Kuala Lumpur hop over for their famous food fare during weekends.

Kway teow (rice noodles) soup is one of Ipoh’s most famous dishes. In fact, this is Ipoh's signature dishes. The star of this dish is the silky-smooth kway teow, or as the locals call it, hor fun.

Around Ipoh, vendors may serve the hor fun in a clear chicken broth, or a chicken-and-prawn broth. If using chicken broth, garnish with shredded chicken; if using a chicken-and-prawn broth, garnish with shredded chicken and shelled prawns.

(For six servings)

2 chicken carcasses, chopped into pieces

3 litres water

1 tsp white peppercorns, washed and lightly crushed

2 tsp salt, or to taste

5g rock sugar, or to taste

500g prawns, shelled and prawn shells fried in 2 tablespoons cooking oil to make prawn oil

300g chicken fillet

600g rice noodles (kway teow), scalded in hot water, rinsed in cold water and drained

2 cups bean sprouts

50g chives, washed and cut into 3cm lengths

½ cup chopped spring onion sliced red chillies with soy sauce

Scald the chicken carcasses with hot water to clean. Place chicken carcasses, water and peppercorns in a large pot and bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer for 40 to 60 minutes. Season to taste with salt and rock sugar. Strain stock into a clean pot and discard the carcasses. Use stock to cook prawns and chicken meat.

Place a portion of cooked noodles, bean sprouts and chives in a bowl. Ladle hot stock over and garnish with prawns and chicken meat. Top with spring onion and drizzle prawn oil over before serving with some cut chillies in light soy sauce on the side.

Source: The Star

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Thai Style Crab Cakes

What you will need:

6 medium raw shrimp, shelled, washed and deveined

1 teaspoon nam pla (fish sauce)

1 pound fresh lump crab meat, picked over for cartilage

1 egg

1/4 cup chopped scallion

1/4 cup chopped cilantro

1 fresh chili, preferably Thai, minced

1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

2 to 3 tablespoons bread crumbs, preferably fresh

About 1/2 cup all-purpose flour for dredging

Peanut or vegetable oil as needed

Lime wedges for serving.

1. Purée shrimp in a food processor (smaller is better) until you have a smooth paste, or chop and mash by hand. Add fish sauce. In a bowl, mix the shrimp purée, crab meat, egg, scallion, cilantro, chili, ginger and salt and pepper; add just enough bread crumbs to stiffen mixture a bit. Refrigerate mixture until you are ready to cook; it will be easier to shape into cakes if you refrigerate it for 30 minutes or more.

2. Season flour with salt and pepper. Film bottom of a large skillet with oil and place over medium-high heat. Shape crab meat mixture into cakes 1 inch thick and as wide as you want. Dredge each in flour, and cook, adjusting heat as necessary and turning once (very gently), until golden brown on both sides, about 5 minutes a side. Serve with lime wedges.

Yield: 4 servings.

Source: NY Times

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Fried Clams in Chilli

Clams (locally called lala) are popular in this part of the world. You can cook them in soup with or without Chinese wine or you can stir-fry them with a few varieties of condiments and ingredients. If you like these mollusc spicy, fry them with chillis or black pepper or simply fry them with garlic and spring onions.

Here is a recipe for FRIED LALA WITH CHILLI


600g fresh lala

1 clove garlic (smashed)

2.5cm piece of ginger, finely sliced

6 bird’s-eye chillies, finely cut

1 tablespoon fermented black beans (taucheong)

A few drops of light soy sauce

Salt and sugar to taste

A dash of Chinese wine (optional)


Saute the smashed garlic, ginger and bird’s-eye chillies until fragrant.

Add the fermented black beans, light soy sauce, sugar and salt.

Throw in the lala and fry until cooked but not overdone, lest the texture of the flesh be rubbery.

Add a dash of wine (if using).

Dish up and serve hot.

Source: The Star

Saturday, August 08, 2009

A Recipe for Health - Pizza Margherita

If you love pizzas, here is a healthful pizza recipe.

This classic pizza — a small amount of mozzarella and a lot of fresh, sliced tomatoes — may inspire other pies in your kitchen. Sometimes I substitute goat cheese for the mozzarella, and sometimes I make this on a yeasted olive oil pastry. So it’s really not a pizza, more like a tart...MARTHA ROSE SHULMAN of the NY Times.

For the garlic olive oil:

1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

3 garlic cloves, halved, green shoots removed, and minced

Combine the oil and garlic in a small, heavy saucepan, and place over medium-low heat. Insert a thermometer, and when the oil reaches 140 degrees, just before the garlic begins to sizzle, remove from the heat and allow to cool. Strain. Refrigerate the oil, and use as directed.

For the pizza:

1/2 batch whole wheat pizza dough

2 tablespoons garlic olive oil (above)

3/4 cup grated mozzarella or crumbled goat cheese

About 2 pounds ripe tomatoes, sliced about 1/4 inch thick (I like to use a mix of mostly red with some yellow and green tomatoes)

Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Several fresh basil leaves, torn into small pieces

1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees, with a pizza stone inside if you have one. Roll or press out the pizza dough to a 12- to 14-inch round. Place on a well floured baker’s peel or an oiled, cornmeal-dusted pizza pan.

2. Gently brush the crust with 1 tablespoon of the garlic olive oil. Sprinkle the mozzarella or the goat cheese over the surface, and top with the tomato slices, overlapping them slightly. Season with salt and pepper.

3. Slide the pizza directly onto the stone from the peel if using one, or place the pizza pan in the oven. Bake until the edges begin to brown, 15 to 20 minutes. Remove from the heat, and drizzle the remaining olive oil over the tomatoes. Sprinkle on the basil and serve. Alternately, allow to cool, then sprinkle on the basil and serve.

Yield: One 12- to 14-inch pizza.

Advance preparation: The dough can be made up to three days ahead and held in the refrigerator. The pizza can be served at room temperature.

Martha Rose Shulman can be reached at

Thursday, July 30, 2009

101 Simple Salads

Salads are the fastest food to prepare and they are healthful too. Here for you to try them are 101 Simple Salads for the Season.

Hope you are having a wonderful summer!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Scrambled Eggs and Beancurd (Tofu)

Here is another recipe for tofu or beancurd that can go very well with rice or rice porridge.

# 200g soft beancurd
# 100g shelled prawns
# 3 tbsp sesame oil
# 1 tsp chopped garlic
# 1 tbsp shredded ginger
# 2 eggs
# 1 tbsp chopped spring onion
# 1 tbsp chopped red chilli
# 1 tbsp chopped coriander leaves

# � tsp salt
# � tsp pepper
# Dash of ground black pepper
# � tsp chicken stock granules

Dice beancurd and drain in a plastic colander until all excess water is completely drained.

Heat sesame oil in a wok and saut� ginger and garlic until lightly golden and fragrant. Add prawns and fry until almost cooked.

Crack in the eggs and add seasoning to mix. Scramble the eggs until cooked through.

Tip off the excess water from the beancurd and add it to the eggs. Toss briefly over high heat until cooked through.

Sprinkle in a dash of ground black pepper and add spring onion, chilli and coriander.

Recipe by Amy Beh of The Star

Spicy Savoury Tofu

Tofu is a healthful food but for some people, it can be rather bland. Here is a recipe for spicy savoury tofu to add zest to a meal.

# 2 pieces soft beancurd
# 1 tsp chopped garlic
# 1 tbsp dried shrimps, coarsely chopped
# Some sesame seeds
# 1 tbsp oil
# 1 tsp sesame oil

Sauce ingredients (combined)
# 2 tbsp Thai sweet chilli sauce
# 2 tbsp tomato sauce
# 2 tbsp chilli sauce
# 1 tbsp HP sauce
# 1 tsp fish sauce
# � tsp sugar
# 1� tbsp water

Cut beancurd into small rectangles and dab each piece with paper towels to remove any water.

Leave aside to air for 10-15 minutes. Deep-fry in hot oil over medium heat until golden brown and crispy. Dish out and set aside.

Heat a nonstick saucepan with oil and sesame oil. Saut� garlic and dried shrimps until fragrant. Pour in the sauce ingredients and bring to a quick boil.

Add the prefried beancurd pieces. Toss and fry until well coated with the sauce.

Dish out and sprinkle with sesame seeds.

Recipe by Amy Beh of The Star

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Spicy Stuffed Fish

3 hard-tailed scad (cencaru) – (Clean and cut pockets at both sides of the fish.

Marinate the fish with salt and turmeric powder and put aside)

Cooking oil for deep-frying

Grind together:
1/2 grated coconut
10 dried chillies – softened and ground
10 shallots
4 cloves garlic
2 stalks lemongrass
2cm stub galangal
1 tablespoon dried prawns
Salt to taste

Heat the oil in a wok. Fill the pockets at the sides of the fish with the ground paste. Deep-fry the fish, carefully turning it to ensure the filling does not fall out. Fry until it is cooked and a crust forms over the stuffed area. Drain and serve with rice and curry.

Source: The Star

Fried Lady’s Fingers (vegetarian)

500g lady’s fingers – washed and cut into diagonal slices
6 shallots – sliced thinly
6 cloves garlic – chopped
3 dried chillies – broken into 2cm pieces
1 tablespoon cooking oil
1 tablespoon vegetarian oyster sauce
1 teaspoon soy sauce

In a wok, heat the oil and saute the shallots, garlic and dried chillies. When slightly crisp, add the lady’s fingers and the sauces. Add a tablespoon of water, cover and allow to simmer for about two minutes. When the vegetables turn a dark green, season with pepper and serve.

Source: The Star

Egg Curry

Eggs (any number)
1 onion – sliced
1 sprig curry leaves
2 teaspoons fenugreek seeds or halba
1 tablespoon cooking oil
Salt to taste
2 tablespoons fish curry powder
1 tablespoon kurma curry powder
1 cup milk or coconut cream
1 cup water
1 tomato- cut into wedges
2 green chillies – halved and seeded
Coriander leaves – washed and cut into 5cm lengths.

In a pot, heat up the cooking oil and add the fenugreek seeds, onions and curry leaves. Fry until aromatic, then add the curry powders and salt and a little water to form a paste. When the paste leaves the sides of the pot and oil surfaces, add the coconut cream or milk and water and let the curry simmer to a rolling boil. Carefully break the eggs into the curry, starting from the sides of the pot. Reduce the heat and let the eggs cook for about three to five minutes before attempting to stir the curry. Add the tomato, coriander leaves and green chillies, simmer for another minute or two, then serve.

Source: The Star

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Steamboat Restaurant at Radius International Hotel

Radius International Hotel Kuala Lumpur,
51-A Changkat Bukit Bintang,
50200 Kuala Lumpur
(Tel: 03-2715 3888 ext 8022 or 8120).
Business hours: Tuesday to Saturday, 7am to 10am (breakfast), 6pm to 10.30pm (dinner).
Closed on Sunday and Monday.

Steamboat: Spoilt for choice: Some 80 items are available for diners to dunk in their steamboat, ranging from seafood like mussels and prawns to meat and a whole lot of vegetables - RM19.90nett.

Set-lunch: Complete set: The set lunch comprises a soup, mini-course, dessert and tea, costs only RM12 nett per person - RM12.00nett.

Top seller: The Chicken Pie whereby the creamy fillings of chicken and mushroom are ‘masked’ inside by the top fluffy pastry layer and is definitely a good bet.

Source: The Star

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Honey-seared Salmon with Sesame Noodles

If you like salmon, here is a simple, quick and easy-to-cook method of preparing a salmon dish of which the salmon is marinated with honey and sesame oil, lightly seared and goes on top of flavorful sesame noodles.

2 pieces fresh salmon fillet
1 Tbsp honey
1 Tbsp light soya sauce
1 Tbsp chilli flakes (more if u want it hotter)
2 Tbsp sesame seeds, toasted
sesame oil
450g egg noodles
200g baby spinach
200g bean sprouts
salt & sugar to taste

Source: The Star

Sunday, May 03, 2009

Foods that reduce stress

There are certain foods that reduce stress. That is why it is important that we eat a good variety of foods. What are the foods that reduce stress? According to this article, Foods that Reduce Stress on, the 9 foods that reduce stress are:

1. Oranges
A German study in Psychopharmacology found that vitamin C helps reduce stress and return blood pressure and cortisol to normal levels after a stressful situation. Vitamin C is also well known for boosting your immune system.

2. Sweet Potatoes
Sweet potatoes can be particularly stress-reducing because they can satisfy the urge you get for carbohydrates and sweets when you are under a great deal of stress. They are packed full of beta-carotene and other vitamins, and the fiber helps your body to process the carbohydrates in a slow and steady manner.

3. Dried Apricots
Apricots are rich in magnesium, which is a stress-buster and a natural muscle relaxant as well.

4. Almonds, Pistachios, and Walnuts
Almonds are packed with B and E vitamins, which help boost your immune system, and walnuts and pistachios help lower blood pressure.

5. Turkey
Turkey contains an amino acid called L-tryptophan. This amino acid triggers the release of serotonin, which is a feel-good brain chemical. This is the reason why many people who eat turkey feel relaxed, or even tired, after eating it. L-tryptophan has a documented calming effect.

6. Spinach
A deficiency in magnesium can cause migraine headaches and a feeling of fatigue. One cup of spinach provides 40 percent of your daily needs for magnesium.

7. Salmon
Diets high in omega-3 fatty acids protect against heart disease. A study from Diabetes & Metabolism found that omega-3s keep the stress hormones cortisol and adrenaline from peaking.

8. Avocados
The monounsaturated fats and potassium in avocados help lower blood pressure. The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute says that one of the best ways to lower blood pressure is to consume enough potassium (avocados have more than bananas).

9. Green Vegetables
Broccoli, kale, and other dark green vegetables are powerhouses of vitamins that help replenish our bodies in times of stress.

How to Read Wine Labels

Are you boggled by wine labels and wish you have some understanding as to what to look for when purchasing wine? Help is on the way. Here are some tips on How to Read Wine Labels from,

There's no universal wine-label organization style. Every country — and sometimes areas within a country — has different rules, regulations, and customs when it comes to labeling wine. Wines from the United States, Australia, Chile, Argentina, New Zealand, and South Africa usually list the grape variety on the label.

French, Italian, and Spanish wines usually list the region, village, or vineyard where the wine was made, but not the grape. Typically you'll want to focus on these key pieces of information: the country and region in which the wine was produced, the grapes used, the producers, the shippers, the vintage year, and the quality level of the wine.

Below are a few sample labels..

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

A Cook's Guide on Food


Whether making the perfect Sunday roast, the juiciest steak or the meatiest lasagne, beef holds a special place with cooks and consumers alike for its deep flavours and rich textures.


Humans have been baking bread since ancient times, yet many people today think of it as something that has to be purchased from a shop. In fact bread is very easy to make at home. Follow our guide for all the information you need, then follow our simple recipes.

Cakes and baking

Making cakes is all about chemical reactions but you don't need to understand the science of baking in order to produce a cake.


Chocolate is inextricably linked with delectable decadence. Its irresistible flavour and melt-in-the-mouth texture make it a delicious indulgence. This product of the cacao tree is used in all kinds of recipes: sweets, cakes and biscuits, desserts, sauces and even some savoury dishes.


Milk, cream, butter, cheese, yoghurt, buttermilk – the list goes on. Dairy products are the cornerstone of baking, vital to hundreds of sauces, and desserts would be a desert without them.


Eggs are a useful source of protein, iodine and many essential vitamins and are almost indispensable to the cook.


Fish is good for us. So good that we should eat a lot more of it.

Food safety

There are 70,000 to 80,000 food poisoning cases reported in the UK each year, and potentially millions of cases that go unrecorded. Sticking to some simple rules of hygiene in the kitchen can help you avoid this danger.


Fruit is where all the energies and efforts of nature go to provide the seasons' kaleidoscope of flavour and colour. Sweet or tart, fresh fruit is the joy of any cook.


Game has a lengthy tradition in Britain and there's been renewed interest in it recently, as farmed game has become more widely available, and the rich flavours and lean meat have won fans among gourmets and the health conscious.

Herbs and salads

We've come a long way since parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme were the typical herbs for the kitchen. Nowadays, supermarkets are likely to have fresh coriander, lemongrass and often more than one variety of basil available, reflecting our love of dishes from around the world.

Knife Skills

Knives are the most essential piece of kit any cook can have and it's important to choose the right knife for the job. You should look after your knives and keep them sharp and they'll last you for years.


British lamb can be found almost all the year round in some good butchers, but its peak season and widest availability is April through to September.

Nuts and seeds

From the ubiquitous peanut to the more seasonal character of the chestnut, nuts provide dishes with flavour, texture and alternative fats and oils.


Culinary oils are extracted from seeds, nuts or, as in the case of olives and avocados, from oil-rich fruits.


Pasta, the essence of the Italian kitchen and noodles, the oriental equivalent, make the perfect base for a quick, tasty meal. They're readily available, easy to store and come in a variety of styles and shapes.


Pastry is easier to make than you may think. Follow a few simple rules, employ a couple of clever tricks, and you'll soon be producing pies, parcels and profiteroles with flair.


Possibly the most versatile of meats, pork comes in a variety of cuts - many of them relatively inexpensive.


Poultry is a popular, often low-fat, source of protein. Chicken, poussin, duck, goose, guinea fowl, quail and turkey provide easy options for both everyday cooking and celebratory meals.


We may no longer 'need' to preserve food as we did in the days before fridges and freezers appeared, but it seems that we're not about to give up the preserving methods learned over thousands of years. From 'dried' pasta to 'smoked' salmon, redcurrant 'jelly' to strawberry 'jam', different methods of preserving are still used in abundance in the food we enjoy today.

Pulses and soya

Peas, beans and lentils, collectively known as pulses, come in dozens of varieties with a host of flavours and textures. Pulses make a comforting and filling ingredient for winter dishes - they also successfully thicken soups and casseroles and soak up flavours well. They're good with rich ingredients such as tomatoes, onions, garlic, herbs, chillies and Indian spices.


Rice and grains are the staple food for much of the world's population. They are an excellent source of complex carbohydrates, and in some cases protein.

Savoury sauces

A tasty sauce can transform a dish from plain fare to pure pleasure, yet making one can be as simple as adding a few drops of wine or vinegar to a pan after frying meat.


Most shellfish is easy to cook and is rich in minerals and bursting with flavour.

Spices and flavourings

Every continent and cuisine benefits from some variety of spice.

Stocks and Soups

The French word for stock - fond, meaning foundation - highlights the belief that fresh stocks are the basis of good cooking. Many of us rely on cubes and powders, but it's easy to make proper stock at home.


Whether they're roots roasted for sweetness, greens stir-fried or steamed, boiled as the base of stocks or sautéed as a starter for sauces, vegetables are the versatile fundamentals of the kitchen.

Source: BBC

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Chicken Curry and Onion Bread

Here's a recipe for a delicious Chicken Curry courtesy of Faridah Begum of The Star. Chicken curry goes well not only with hot plain rice. You can also have bread to go along with it or even pancakes. Besides the recipe for Chicken Curry, you will also find a recipe for making Onion Pancakes or Onion Bread as it is called.

Favourite Chicken Curry

1 chicken – cut into 12 pieces

5cm ginger and 6 cloves garlic – pounded finely or blended with a little water

3 tablespoon cooking oil

1 onion – sliced

2 sprigs curry leaves

3 tablespoons meat curry powder

2 tablespoons kurma curry powder

Salt to taste

1/2 can evaporated milk

1 cup coconut cream

2 cups water

3 potatoes – cut into four

A few sprigs coriander leaves

2 tomatoes – cut into wedges

3 red chillies – halved and seeded


Heat the cooking oil and saute the onion, curry leaves and ginger paste until aromatic.

Add in the curry powders, salt and a little water to form a paste. Let the paste cook, stirring constantly until the oil surfaces and the paste thickens. Add the chicken pieces and fry for a minute or two. When the chicken is well coated, add the evaporated milk, coconut cream and remaining water. Let the curry come to a boil. Once it boils, add the potatoes and lower the flame a little. Cook until the potatoes soften, add the remaining ingredients and simmer for another five minutes.

(A tip: This curry tastes and looks better if cooked several hours before serving.)

Quick Onion Bread

2 cups plain flour

1 egg

Salt to taste

1 onion – sliced

2 spring onions – sliced finely.



In a bowl, place the flour and make a well in the centre. Put the egg and salt, then add water slowly as you bind the flour, egg and salt into a batter. Make up with water for a runny consistency, then add the onion and spring onions. For a spicier flavour, add sliced chillies. Allow the batter to rest for about half-an-hour.

Heat up a griddle, oil it and pour over it half a cupful of batter. Cook until the batter thickens and resembles pancake. Flip the bread, then fold in two. Serve hot with the chicken curry.

Source: The Star

Room Eighteen, a new trendy restaurant in Petaling Jaya

Malaysia is never short of places to eat as new food outlets seem to be mushrooming up everywhere. One of the latest joints is Room Eighteen located in Tropicana City Mall, Petaling Jaya. It officially opened on April 1.

Room Eighteen with its trendy concept is targeting a younger market craving for dim sum and roasted meats though the restaurant is also ideal for the general clientele of families with children and the working crowd.

Recommended items by the Room Eighteen chefs are the Xiao Long Bao (Shanghai dumplings), Crispy Egg Tart, Pan-Fried Pork Dumpling, Fried Venison with Black Pepper, and Pork Ribs Congee with Dried Oyster.

In conjunction with its opening, the restaurant is offering several promotions until April 18. The promotions include:

- an 18% discount on a la carte items,
- a RM1.80 voucher for the selected dish of the day for the first 50 walk-in customers daily, and,
- a free set lunch for the first 18 customers dining in daily.

For enquiries, call 03-7728 8128.

Source: The Star..A place for the younger crowd

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Cooking With What Is Available

Cooking for the family day in and day out can sometimes take a toll on the person doing it. A little help on what to cook can be helpful, don't you think?

Here is a site that does just that. You just need to check off the available ingredients you have in your fridge, and voila! you will get a suggested recipe. Check out

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Siamese Laksa

The Star today highlighted a Siamese Laksa that has been making waves in Penang. Also known as Penang Baba Laksa Lemak, one of the best of this noodle dish is sold at Chop Wah Chee coffeeshop near the Kek Lok Si Temple in Air Itam.

Doesn't it look delicious? The secret to the tasty soup base is the use of the big-eyed fish or fresh sardines instead of mackerel, according to the cook, who is the Thai wife of the shop-owner.

Her version is also different from what is actually served in Thailand. It is flavoured by a number of herbs used as garnishing, including basil leaves and several types of aubergines, such as the terong rapuh (a golf ball-sized aubergine and the terong pipit, a wild aubergine that is the size of a green pea.

If you would like to try this yummy Siamese laksa, the coffeeshop is located on Jalan Balik Pulau. Opening hours are between 10am and 5pm with extended hours during peak periods.

And, if you would like to try cooking this at home, here is the recipe, courtesy of The Star:

Siamese Laksa


Spice Paste:
15 (20g) dried chillies, soaked
4 (60g) fresh red chillies
5cm (40g) fresh turmeric
18-20 (180g) shallots
4 cloves garlic
6 candlenuts
5 stalks lemongrass
1 kaffir lime (remove top green layer of skin only)
100 cooking oil

Fish stock
1kg herring (parang) or mackerel (kembung)
2 litres water
2 stalks lemongrass, bruised
2 pieces tamarind peel (asam keping)
300ml thick coconut milk
1 tablesppon sugar, or to taste
2 teaspoons salt, or to taste
800g fresh laksa noodles, scalded

1 torch ginger flower (bunga kantan), split and sliced thinly
1/4 pineapple, cut into thin strips
1 cucumber, cut into thin strips
1 onion, peeled, halved and sliced thinly
1 bunch mint leaves
10 bird’s eye chillies, sliced

Blend all the spice paste ingredients. Fry until aromatic in the cooking oil over a medium to low heat. Set aside.

Gut and clean the fish. Bring water to boil; add the lemongrass and fish.

Boil for five minutes or until fish is just cooked. Remove fish, debone and flake. Set aside the fish flakes. Strain fish stock into a clean pot, add the tamarind peel and spice paste. Simmer over low heat for 30 minutes or until gravy is aromatic. Add half the fish flakes and coconut milk and bring back to a boil. Season to taste.

To serve, bring the laksa gravy back to a boil. Place a serving of laksa noodles in a bowl and add the desired toppings. Ladle the hot laksa gravy and top with the reserved fish flakes.