Friday, December 21, 2012

Sweet and Sour Pork

Sweet and sour pork is one of my favourite dish because of its sweet yet sour tangy taste. It has been my favourite since young and it is one of most Singaporean's favourite. It is widely available at coffee shops, and Chinese restaurants as well.

It is a relatively very easy dish to do. It just takes more time to prepare and that one must bear with the oily kitchen and stove. (which I dislike!) I must say I am surprised that I can master this on my first attempt. All thanks to my dear friend who shared with me her tried and tested recipe which made my attempt much easier.

It is a slightly varied recipe from the one she shared but most of the items and steps remain the same. These are based on my own guestimation on the quantity. You may adjust accordingly where necessary.


All you need:

About 2-300g lean meat / tenderloin cut into cubes - approx for 4 pax
1/4 each of green, yellow and red green pepper cut into cubes
(You may also add pineapple cubes, tomatos or lychees for the added zing!)
Oil for frying
Some chopped garlic and onions

1/2 tsp corn flour
1/2 tsp of Hua Diao wine
1 tsp soy sauce

1. Marinate pork with the marinate seasoning and leave aside for 15min

1/3 cup water
60g all-purpose flour
30g corn starch
1/2 egg
1 teaspoon cooking oil
1 small pinch of salt

1. Mix batter together well and add pork cubes into batter

The key to good sweet and sour pork is the sauce! Here's the recipe which I like alot and have slightly modified because I lack certain ingredients. But the absence of those ingredients didn't affect the taste too much.

Sweet and Sour Sauce
1 1/2 tablespoons tomato ketchup
1 tbsp plum sauce
1 teaspoon Heinz Worcestershire Sauce
1 teaspoon oyster sauce
1 teaspoon corn starch
1 teaspoon sugar
2 tablespoons water
(Mix sauce well)

1. Deep fry the pork cubes coated in the batter
2. When golden brown, put it aside and drain on paper towels
3. Fry some chopped garlic and onion
4. After lightly browned, fry the cut bell peppers till fragrant - you should smell the aroma after a while
5. Transfer the pork cubes into the wok and fry for a while before adding in the sauce
6.  Stir fry for a while to ensure everything is well stirred and it's done!

Serve hot with steamed rice.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Minced Pork with Pumpkin

A friend of mine recommended this dish to me as it was hassle-free and suitable for people like me who can't find enough time for cooking.

I have never tried my mom's pumpkin dishes so I would never expect to try this dish myself. After wrecking my brain on what to cook for my family for the weekend and recommendation from my friend, I decided to just give this a shot. It's really easy without taking too much of my time. Most importantly, pumpkin contains loads of nutrition so you can't go wrong with this. It is loaded with beta carotene, which can help reduce the risk of certain types of cancers as well as protect against heart disease. This humble backyard vegetable is also very low in calories, high in dietary fibre, vitamins and minerals. What more can you ask for?

As this is a self-made self-tested and improvised recipe from my friend, I don't have the exact measurements but I hope the estimates provided below are good enough for 4 pax.

What you need:

1/2 tsp of chopped garlic
1 tsp of chopped onions
A little oil

Pumpkin cubes (approx 1-1.5 cup)
2 Chinese mushrooms (rinsed, soaked and thinly cut)
2 tbsp water

About 200 g minced pork (pre-marinated with some corn starch, soy sauce, pepper and sesame oil)

1 tbsp oyster sauce
3 tbsp water
2 tsp sesame oil
1/2 tsp soy sauce

1. Heat oil in wok then throw in A
2. Fry till fragrant then place B in the wok
3. Stir fry for a few min then add about 2 tbsp of water
4. Cover wok and let it simmer for a few min to soften the pumpkin (but not too soft)
5. Incorporate C and stir

6. Add in D and stir fry for another 2-3 min
7. Cover wok and let it simmer for 3 min

Dish is ready to be served with pumpkin is slightly soft.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Roland crabs

Chilli crabs are touted to be every Singaporean's favourite, one of the Uniquely Singaporean dish. It is also believed to have started as early as 1950s! I'm not sure of this and I can't verify  that. But what I can be sure of is my trip to Roland wasn't a wasted one. In fact, it is a well worth trip!

I first patronised the restaurant during the CNY period with my family and grand mother-in-law who loves crab, and had cravings for crab. I went without a high expectation, and I was pleasantly surprised on the taste and quality of their chilli crabs. What I like about their crabs is the rich texture and taste of the gravy. Many chilli crabs that I've eaten are either too dry, too spicy, or too diluted/watery. The crabs at Roland gave me a whole new perspective on chili crabs. The gravy was very tasty and I couldn't get enough of the fried man tou (Chinese buns) dipped in the delicious and generous portion of the gravy. The gravy is thick and yummy.

Just some weeks back when one of my colleague was leaving the company, a few of us decided to buy her a farewell dinner at Roland. It was everyone's maiden trip to Roland except for myself. Of course the chilli crab order was a must. Good that everyone loved it. Apart from the other dishes of vegetables and crispy fried squid (which is also good by the way), we ordered another crab - Salted Egg Yolk with Yam. My impression of a salted egg yolk crab is it is sticky, thick and something that I will not clamour for more because of the flavourful and rich gravy. You will get tired after the first or second bite.

However to our surprise, the dish was prepared dry. It is a tad too oily, but the taste of the salted egg yolk isn't too overpowering and makes you want to have more! What's interesting is the yam sticks are deep fried to make it very crispy like a snack. It is thinly cut, so you don't get too tired of eating them. It also goes well with the flavoured crab that is not too rich in flavour. The taste of the whole dish is very well balanced. But be warned. It can get quite addictive!

For the kind of calories, fats and cholesterol that we had to put up for that night, I must say it is well worth it!

For folks who might be interested, here is the contact info:

Roland Restaurant Pte Ltd, Block 89, Marine Parade Central, # 06 - 750 Singapore 440089

Tel: 6440 8205

Operation Hours :
Weekdays - Monday to Saturday
Lunch : 11:30 am to 2:30 pm Last Order
Dinner : 6:00 pm to 10:30 pm Last Order

Sundays & Public Holidays :
Lunch : 11:00 am to 2:30 pm Last Order
Dinner : 6:00 pm to 10:30 pm Last Order

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Blueberry muffin for the souls

This recipe is dedicated to my friend whom I've lost touch for 17 years. We met by chance on one fine evening (good if you are reading this) and we were both overwhelmed by our emotions. She cried, I teared. We caught up with each other again. In anticipation of our meeting once again after 17 years, I decided to bake her some blueberry muffins, hoping she and her family would enjoy.

Here's what you need:

375g plain flour (sifted)
1 tbsp baking powder (sifted with flour)
125g soft brown sugar

165g melted butter
2 eggs lightly beaten
250ml fresh milk

185g fresh bluberries (about one small tray)

1. Preheat oven to 210deg C.
2. Mix A and make a well in the centre.
3. Pour in the combined B items.
4. Fold in mixture but do not overmix. Batter should be lumpy.
5. Place blueberries into mixture and mix.
6. Pour into approx 12 muffin cups. Batter should fill up to 3/4 of the cup.
7. Bake for 20min.

Cool on wire rack.