Saturday, February 6, 2016

CNY 2016 Greeting - Gong Xi Fa Cai!

Wishing everyone a happy and prosperous New Year - Gong Xi Fa Cai from us all at GoodyFoodies.

Check out this cute CNY greeting from #BabySumoKids.

Here's to an abundance of good food as well as lots of good luck and "gold" in the new year.

May the Year of the Fire Monkey be a great one for you all!



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Friday, February 5, 2016

9 Great Chinese New Year Vegetarian Recipes (CNY)

Many Chinese, including our family, follow the practice of abstaining from meat and eating vegetarian food on the first day of Chinese New Year. It is believed that abstaining from meat consumption on the first day will ensure longevity. Vegetarian food can include mock meat as well as vegetables.

Here are a collection of 9 of my favorite vegetarian dishes which we would prepare annually on the first day of CNY. Please click on dish names for the full recipe.











This is a must-have vegetarian dish in our home on the first day of CNY. My mum would make this for us every year without fail while we were growing up and we have continued the tradition.

This dish is harmoniously made up of loads of auspicious ingredients such as leeks, mushrooms, carrots, dried lily buds, cabbage and tanghoon (glass noodles).


2. Braised mushrooms with fatt choy and lettuce



On the first day of CNY, we would always have longevity noodles and to go with the noodles, we would make this braised mushroom dish with fatt choy. The braising liquid tastes great with the noodles.

Furthermore, fatt choy 髮菜, also known as black moss is a popular ingredient as its homonym sounds like "struck it rich". Other ingredients in this dish also has auspicious meanings, such as lettuce 生菜 which symbolises prosperity, mushroom for longevity, enoki mushrooms for wealth and carrots for good luck.


3. Braised mushrooms with broccoli and fatt choy



Another alternative to dish #2 which we make is to serve the braised mushrooms with broccoli florets and carrots.


4. Stir fried leeks with sliced mushrooms



Ingredients with auspicious-sounding names are sought-after during Chinese New Year. For this reason, leeks 蒜 are commonly served as the name is a homophone for "calculating (money)" (算suàn). 




Mixed vegetables is a popular dish during CNY as it symbolises family harmony. I used a mix of broccoli, celery and carrots as well as 3 types of mushrooms - Shitake, enoki and abalone mushrooms. This dish is absolutely heaving with good, auspicious meanings - carrots symbolises good luck, Shitake mushrooms symbolises longevity, enoki mushrooms, also known as golden needle mushroom represents "gold" and abalone's homonym is absolute prosperity.


6. Braised tofu pok with mushrooms



Having white tofu is a no-no during CNY as the colour white is considered bad luck, however tofu pok  豆腐泡 (also known as tofu puff or tau pok) is considered auspicious as the golden colour symbolises gold and wealth. The tofu pok is braised with two types of mushrooms, enoki and bunashimeji and is flavoured with mushroom oyster flavoured sauce.





I love cabbage! This stir fried cabbage with wood ear fungus 木耳 (mok yee) and Enoki mushrooms 金菇 is very auspicious since cabbage's homonym sounds like "prosperity" and enoki mushrooms, also known as golden needle mushroom represents "gold". The wood ear fungus is added for texture as well as symbolising prosperity.




Eryngii mushrooms is also known as king trumpet mushroom, French horn mushroom or king oyster mushroom but in Japanese it is called eringi (エリンギ).This mushroom has a lovely meaty texture and is often compared to that of abalone.





For those looking for an easy one-dish vegetarian meal, try this vegetarian "Hakka mee".The noodles are stir fried with auspicious vegetables such as Chinese mushrooms, leeks, carrots, wood ear fungus and Chinese cabbage leaves. 



Do share with me what your favorite vegetarian CNY dishes are! :)



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I am submitting this to the "Cook & Celebrate: CNY 2016" event which I am co-hosting with Zoe of Bake for Happy Kids and Diana of The Domestic Goddess Wannabe. To join, simply cook or bake any Chinese New Year recipes from 15 January 2016 to 22 February 2016.

Your post must be a current post i.e. posted between 15 Jan to 22 Feb 2016 - please do not link older posts. Please mention our "Cook & Celebrate: CNY 2016" event in your post and link back to Zoe of Bake for Happy Kids, Diana of The Domestic Goddess Wannabe and Baby Sumo of GoodyFoodies.

Happy cooking! Do check out the other bloggers recipe below:







If you enjoyed reading my posts, LIKE me on Facebook! You can also follow me on Instagram (@babysumo) for more photo updates or Dayre for daily updates. Thanks :)

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Recipe: Fried Rice with Foie Gras, Tobiko and Prawns

I once had fried rice topped with foie gras at a Chinese restaurant, and enjoyed it - so I told myself I must try to make it if I ever get my hands on some foie. Ever since we discovered a place where we could buy it, we've been experimenting and cooking different dishes with it, and I remembered about the fried rice dish I had.

So, here is my version of fried rice with prawns, topped with foie gras and tobiko. The foie gras is rich and creamy, and the tobiko gives it a subtle saltiness and adds an extra crunchy texture to the dish. With its vibrant "ong" colours, this would be a great rice dish to serve as part of your CNY meal. It is also an auspicious dish in terms of the ingredients used - prawns symbolise laughter and happiness and the fish roe (tobiko) promises abundance for the new year ;)



Fried rice doesn't get any more auspicious than this ;)



Fried rice with foie gras, tobiko and prawns
Recipe by Baby Sumo
Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 15 minutes
Serves 2


Ingredients
3 cups cooked cold rice, left overnight in fridge
3-4 tbsp cooking oil
3 large eggs
1 1/2 - 2 tbsp light soy sauce
10 king prawns, peeled and deveined, with tails intact
3-4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 tsp ginger wine
6 French or green beans, chopped
Salt

2 pieces Foie gras
Tobiko (or ebiko)
Maldon salt
1/2 cucumber, sliced




1. Marinate the prawns with the ginger wine. Beat the eggs with 1/2 tsp salt.

2. In a wok, heat 1 tbsp oil over medium high heat. Add half the garlic and cook for 1 1/2 minutes until lightly browned. Add the prawns and green beans and cook for 1-2 minutes, until the prawns are cooked through. Season with some salt. Remove prawns and green beans and set aside.

3. Meanwhile, in a separate saucepan, heat over high heat. Once the pan is very hot, add the foie gras and sear for 1 minute each side. Remove from pan and place on baking tray and place in a preheated oven (180°C roast mode) for 6 minutes.

4. Add the remaining oil and garlic to the wok, then cook for 1-2 minutes until golden brown. Then, add rice, and cook for 3-4 minutes, until the rice is hot and cackling. It is important that the rice is hot so that the egg cooks upon contact with the rice and hence the rice will not end up soggy. Pour in the egg, and cook for a further 2-3 minutes, stirring continuously, until the rice grains look golden and evenly coated with the egg.

5. Add the cooked prawns and green beans and mix well. Taste and season with more soy sauce and salt as required.

6. To serve, place rice in a small bowl, then unmould onto a large plate. Top the fried rice with foie gras, sprinkled with some coarse sea salt such as Maldon, then spoon tobiko all around the rice.


Note:
1. You can use the oil from searing the foie in lieu of cooking oil (in Step 4), if you prefer.
2. If you cannot get foie, you can omit it - it tastes just as fantastic.







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I am submitting this to the "Cook & Celebrate: CNY 2016" event which I am co-hosting with Zoe of Bake for Happy Kids and Diana of The Domestic Goddess Wannabe. To join, simply cook or bake any Chinese New Year recipes from 15 January 2016 to 22 February 2016.

Your post must be a current post i.e. posted between 15 Jan to 22 Feb 2016 - please do not link older posts. Please mention our "Cook & Celebrate: CNY 2016" event in your post and link back to Zoe of Bake for Happy Kids, Diana of The Domestic Goddess Wannabe and Baby Sumo of GoodyFoodies.

Happy cooking! Do check out the other bloggers recipe below:







If you enjoyed reading my posts, LIKE me on Facebook! You can also follow me on Instagram (@babysumo) for more photo updates or Dayre for daily updates. Thanks :)

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Chinese New Year Menu in KL / Selangor

Chinese New Year falls on the 8th February 2016 this year. To usher in the Year of the Monkey, I have put together a list of hotel restaurants (which I have personally tried and would recommend) for your reunion dinner, CNY family dinners or to entertain your business clients and company 收工酒宴 ("sau gong") dinner.



1. Four Points by Sheraton Puchong (Pork-free)

As the hotel does not have a Chinese restaurant, there will be a reunion buffet dinner (7 Feb 2016) at The Eatery with dishes such as sun dried oyster dumplings, wok fried tiger prawn, build your own Yee Sang counter and many more. A buffet dinner is also available on the first day of CNY with more choices for the entire family to enjoy.

Alternatively, you can also choose from 3 specialised banquet menu, with prices starting from RM1,488 nett per table of 10 persons. There is a minimum requirement of 3 tables, and the menus are available from 8-22 February 2016. The highlights here include steamed sea nutrition pearl tiger grouper, and wok fried tiger prawns with chilli garlic crumb.




Available from: 8-22 February for the banquet menu. 

Price: The dinner buffet is priced at RM128 nett per adult and RM64 nett per child between 4 to 12 years old. Banquet menu prices start from RM1488 per table of 10 persons.


2. Celestial Court, Sheraton Imperial KL (Pork-Free)

Celestial Court will be featuring 4 exclusive prosperity 9-course set menus in conjunction with the Year of the Monkey, with reference to the legendary story of the Monkey King, namely "Journey to the West, Eastern Sea Palace, Celestial Gatekeeper and Uproar in Heaven."

There will also be 8 types of yee sang, including 3 luxurious yee sang using live Boston lobster as well as monkey head mushrooms and banana yee sang. Our favorites here are Thick Broth with Baby Lobster, Shredded Jade Abalone, Dried Scallop and Sea Cucumber, and Duo combination of tiger king prawns.




Price: The set menus are priced at RM1988, RM2088. RM2288 and RM2688 for a table of 10 persons.


3. Lai Po Heen, Mandarin Oriental KL (Pork-Free)

Toss to prosperity,  good fortune and health with 5 different yee sangs available here - choose either sliced Abalone in Thai dressing, Yellow Fin Tuna and Salmon, Soft Shell Crab and Snow Pear, Salmon and Assorted Vegetables as well as Assorted Vegetables and Shredded Fruits in Sesame Dressing.

There are also three 8-course set menus offered, Fortune (RM278 per person), Prosperity (RM388 per person), and Wealth (RM628 per person) with a minimum of four diners, available for lunch and dinner. Our favorites here include double-boiled abalone soup and sea cucumber with morel mushrooms and maca, steamed Omega rich grouper with chopped chilli paste and ginger parsley paste and Lai Po Heen's CNY "Fatt Choy" sun dried seafood pot.





Available from: now until 29 February 2016.

Price: Fortune (RM278 per person), Prosperity (RM388 per person), and Wealth (RM628 per person) set menus.


4. Five Sen5es, The Westin KL (Serves Pork)

Check out the yee sang here at Five Sen5es, which features Norwegian fresh salmon sashimi, Australian spring abalone, as well as Chinese pork jerky (aka bak kwa!).

There will be 3 exquisite set menus offered here as well as festive a la carte items as well as an enhanced dim sum brunch for the festivities. Some of our favorite dishes here are the deep fried pork spare ribs with berries and haw berry sauce and crisp fried prawn with pumpkin and salted egg yolk mousse.




Available from: 2-21 February 2016

Price:Start from RM1688 nett per table of 10 persons


5. Vistana Kuala Lumpur Titiwangsa (Pork-Free)

There are 3 menus to choose from - Set Menu 1 (RM998++ for 10 pax), Set Menu 2 (RM1198++ for 10 pax) and Set Menu 3 (RM1398++ for 10 pax) - one of the best value for money hotel CNY menus in KL. The menus are available at Vistana Hotels in KL, Kuantan and Penang from 1 to 22 February 2016. One of the more affordable hotel CNY set menus in KL.

We liked the deep fried grouper with spicy Thai sauce as well as the Hong Kong style crispy prawns with wasabi dressing. 



Tai Zi Heen will be offering three selections of a 9-course festive set menu packed with must-have Chinese New Year dishes for the perfect reunion celebration. You can choose from Spring & Happiness (RM1788 per table of 10 pax), Everlasting Prosperity (RM2288 per table of 10 pax) or Wealth & Fortune set (RM2788 per table of 10 pax).

At Tai Zi Heen, you can try their new yee sang creation with crispy whitebait topping. We love the crispy prawns coated with lemon dressing, tropical fruit salsa and tobiko caviar as well as the steamed dragon tiger grouper



Available from: 18 January to 22 February 2016.



Gong Xi Fa Cai to all!



If you enjoyed reading my posts, LIKE me on Facebook! You can also follow me on Instagram (@babysumo) for more photo updates or Dayre for daily updates. Thanks :)

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Recipe: Chinese Roast Pork (Siew Yuk) v2.0

Another must-have dish for us during Chinese New Year reunion dinner is Chinese roast pork aka siew yuk. Siew yuk is a popular dish during CNY as pork symbolizes strength and wealth. In my family, it is usually offered to the ancestors during the prayers (pre-reunion dinner), and then later enjoyed by all at the dinner table.

For us, a good siew yuk must have good fat to lean meat ratio, as well as crispy crackling. I am happy with my previous recipe for homemade siew yuk - the taste is good and the crackling is crispy, however I experimented on different drying methods to see if I could produce the best siew yuk with the crispiest crackling.



This time, we placed it under the hot sun for about 1 hour for the skin to dry up. And yes, we got siew yuk with super crispy crackling, however the downside is you will need to watch it (especially if there are cats or birds lurking around in your neighbourhood), so I think I still prefer to air-dry it under a fan for a few hours. We also got this new rolling tool which helps makes / pricks many small holes in the skin to make the skin crispy ;)

Don't forget to make this easy homemade chilli sauce which goes perfectly with roast meats!








Chinese roast pork belly (Siew Yuk 燒肉)
Recipe by Baby Sumo, adapted from here
Preparation time: 10-15 minutes
Cooking time: 60-70 minutes
Serves 4-5

Ingredients
2.3kg pork belly
3 tsp fine sea salt
2 tsp five spice powder

1-2 tbsp coarse salt

To serve
Homemade chilli sauce


1. Wash the pork belly and pat it dry with a kitchen towel. Place the pork belly, skin side up, on a wire rack (with a tray underneath). Prick the pork belly all over with a sharp knife, carving fork or rolling apparatus (as above photo) - the more holes you make, the better. Then, place under hot sun for about 1 hour for the skin to dry up.

2. Using a sharp knife, lightly score the pork belly skin-side. The lines should be diagonal and around an inch apart from one another.

3. Rub 3 tsp of fine salt and 2 tsp five spice powder all over the meat. Place the pork belly on a wire rack under a fan for another 2 hours to dry further.

4.Preheat the oven to 200°C and set to roast mode. Sprinkle coarse salt all over the top (it's ok even if you put a lot, as you can scrape it off later), and place the pork belly on a wire rack with a tray underneath to catch the drippings into the preheated oven (in the centre of the oven). Roast for 25 minutes.

5. Change the oven setting to grill mode 230°C and cook for another 45-50 minutes until the crackling is golden brown and crispy. At this point the skins hisses and crackles and should look "bumpy". If there are any burnt bits, just scrape it off using a sharp knife. You will also be able to scrape off all the coarse salt easily.





6. Remove the roasted pork belly from the oven and allow to rest for about 10 minutes, then chop with a meat cleaver into bite-size pieces.




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I am submitting this to the "Cook & Celebrate: CNY 2016" event which I am co-hosting with Zoe of Bake for Happy Kids and Diana of The Domestic Goddess Wannabe. To join, simply cook or bake any Chinese New Year recipes from 15 January 2016 to 22 February 2016.

Your post must be a current post i.e. posted between 15 Jan to 22 Feb 2016 - please do not link older posts. Please mention our "Cook & Celebrate: CNY 2016" event in your post and link back to Zoe of Bake for Happy Kids, Diana of The Domestic Goddess Wannabe and Baby Sumo of GoodyFoodies.

Happy cooking! Do check out the other bloggers recipe below:







If you enjoyed reading my posts, LIKE me on Facebook! You can also follow me on Instagram (@babysumo) for more photo updates or Dayre for daily updates. Thanks :)

Monday, February 1, 2016

Durian cendol and chicken rice ball, Melaka

We've been on the move recently with visits to Ipoh and Port Dickson. We added a third to the list right after, with a visit to Melaka. Melaka is a great place to visit with its rich heritage and sightseeing opportunities. Obviously, the food on offer there is not too shabby either!

We had a walk around before heading over to Jonker Street for some cendol and chicken rice.

Old train on display

Melaka has its own T-Rex too!

A visit to A Famosa, the "famous" Portuguese fortress, is warranted if you are a first timer to Melaka. The sun was scorching hot and the walk to the peak of the hill where it is situated left us sweating quite a bit. But it definitely is worth a visit, especially to have a look at a piece of history and also the view from the top of St. Paul's Hill.



The Governer's Museum







Baby D having a breather after a couple of attempts to "hike" the unconventional way



We then made our way towards Jonker Street and our first destination was Chung Wah for some chicken rice balls. A queue had already formed outside the shop, giving an indication of its popularity. We decided to delegate the troops by having a person stand in line, while the others went to get some drinks and cendol from San Shu Gong, which is situated opposite the restaurant. San Shu Gong is most well known for their durian cendol, and sells various snacks such as dodol, traditional biscuits and drinks.







We bought some nyonya kuih from a nearby stall to share.









To cool down ourselves from the sweltering heat outside, we got some cold lime essence drink and also durian cendol.



The durian cendol (RM5.80) was good, among the better ones we have tasted before. We liked that they are generous with their portions and the condiments that come with the cendol. The taste of durian went very well with the thick gula melaka. Definitely a refreshing delight at that time of the day.

"Look, I'm a durian!"



Opening Hours: 10:00 am to 10:00 pm (Daily)

Location: San Shu Gong, 33, Jalan Hang Jebat, 75200 Melaka.

Tel: 06-282 8381


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We finally got into Chung Wah restaurant after about 45 minutes of waiting




The restaurant works like clockwork, from the moment you leave the waiting line. You tell the waiter the number of persons in your group and you are ushered to a table where you are offered barley drink (we took two), and the chicken and rice balls are brought to your table automatically. No ordering or deliberating necessary. Seems like the shop owners have decided on this system where the customer does not get a choice. It seems like it helps with the speed at which food/customers flows in and out of the restaurant.

However, we were not overly impressed with the quality of the food on offer here. We felt that the chicken was slightly overcooked, but that might be just our personal taste. In general, the food is alright, but not so much that it would warrant a 45 minute wait, and the general impression of the place gives you the feeling that you get in, eat as fast as possible, and leave in a jiffy.




Opening times: Mon-Fri 8.30am-3pm; Sat-Sun 8.30am - 4pm.

Price: Total bill RM55 - 1 chicken, 20 rice balls, 2 barley drinks.

Location: Chung Wah, 18, Jalan Hang Jebat, 75200 Melaka, Malaysia.


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After lunch, we made our way to Dataran Pahlawan, and had a look at their Doraemon exhibition while enjoying some lower temperatures after the punishing afternoon heat we experienced from before. The kids certainly enjoyed this one!







*This is a guest post by The Unc.

If you enjoyed reading my posts, LIKE me on Facebook! You can also follow me on Instagram (@babysumo) for more photo updates or Dayre for daily updates. Thanks :)

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