Tuesday 9 October 2012

Chicken Glutinous Rice 糯米饭 (Loh Mai Kai)

Chicken Glutinous Rice 糯米饭(cantonese called it Loh Mai Kai) is one of our favorite breakfast. My mum-in-law usually prepare the ingredients one day before. In the morning she will place them in small ricebowls and steam them for our breakfast.  Glutinous rice is always my favorite. In whatever style, whether is dumpling or those brown glutinous rice with dried shrimp and black mushroom, they are always my favorite. I love them but it is "heaty" and sometime it cause indigestion. I used to bring this chicken glutinous rice to my office. My colleagues love it . My mum-in-law is really good at making this, and I would prefer to eat those that she made. So until today I have not learn how to make this(i mean practical) because I still prefer my mum-in-law's chicken glutinous rice. However, my friends in a group saw my posting and  had requested for the recipe, and my mum-in-law is more than happy to share with us. This is how she make this dish ....

Ingredients A
2 cups of glutinous rice
1 1/2 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbsp black soya sauce
1 tbsp of chopped small onion
1/2 tsp of chopped garlic
1-2 tbsp of cooking oil

Ingredient B
2 pcs of chicken breast meat (without bone n cut into bite size)
2 tbsp light sauce
dash of pepper
1/2 tsp cornflour/potato flour
1 tsp sesame oil

Method :
Part 1
Combine ingredients B. Mix and season them well and set a side in the fridge for later use. Season overnight.

Part 2
Wash glutinous rice. Place it into a round baking 20cm tray and soak with 2 cup of water for 1 to 2 hours.
After soaking, drain and pour away the water.
In a wok, fry the garlic and onion until it is light brown and fragrance
Add in the soaked rice. Add the rest of ingredients A. Stir and fry until they are well combine for about 2 to 3 min until a little dry. Off fire.
Remove and place them into the baking tray.
In a wok of boiling water, steam this rice for half an hour or until the rice is cooked and tender.
Remove from fire and let it cool down and set a side for use.

Part 3
Prepare 5 empty ricebowls.
In a wok, prepare water for steaming. Boil the water.
While waiting for water to boil, divide the well seasoned chicken meat into 5 portions and cooked glutinous rice into 5 portions. Place the chicken meat at the bottom of the bowl, then scoop the cooked glutinous rice and place it on top of the chicken. When the water is boil, steam for 20mins in high fire. Off fire and serve

Friday 28 September 2012

Stew Beef

My husband like to eat stew beef. Many years ago, I used to work and seldom cook at home. Part of the reason was I only know how to cook simple dishes. Unlike my mum-in-law who is a real super good cook. Because of this reason I seldom cook but watch her do the cooking most of the time. There are time when I happen to end work early, I will come home and be her "disciple". Help in the kitchen and at the same time asking her questions "how to cook this? how to cook that?.....". My mum-in-law is really good at chinese dishes...and she does cook stew meat but not beef. She used pork instead of beef. But my husband love beef instead of pork for this dish.

In the past,each time when we go out for meal and happen to see a stall that sell stew beef, my husband will surely order. Each time as he eat, he will say "very nice"..... For this reason, I gave myself this challenge that must learn how to cook stew beef.

Ingredients :
500gm short rib beef  cut into cubes
1 potato cut into cubes
1 carrot cut into cubes
1 big tomato cut into 8 pieces
1 big onion cut into 8 pieces
3 garlic remove skin (no cutting)
1 can of button mushroom /some fresh swiss brown mushroom

3 tbsp light sauce (I used Tai Hua Special grade)
1 tsp sugar
1 tbsp Heniz worcesterhire sauce
1 tsp black soya sauce for the color
a dash of pepper
3 black pepper corn
2 pcs of clove
1 bayleaf (optional)

1 tsp of cornflour / potato flour

1. Season the beef with above seasoning  then add in 1 tsp of cornflour . Let it season for an hour.
2. In a deep pot or Happy Call Pan (HCP), add 1 tsp of oil. Pan fry the potato and carrot. Remove  potato and carrot from fire and set a side when they are slightly brown on each sides. Pan fry mushroom and remove from fire and set a side
3. In the same pot/HCP, add another 1 tsp of oil, put in the big onion and garlic to fry till fragrance.Put in the beef to pan fry until all sides are slight brown
4. Add water that cover the meat. Roughly 1/2 cup. You may add more if needed.
5. Once it is boil and add tomato and you can at this point check whether the seasoning is of your desire and add a little more light sauce to suit your taste, lower the fire and cover and continue simmer about 1 hour.  After an hour, add carrot and mushroom and a dash of basil. Continue to simmer another 30min.
6. Add potato when the meat is tender. Continue to simmer another 10min. Off fire and serve with rice.

Note : if you find it is too watery, add 1 tsp of cornflour/potato with 2 tsp of water and stir into the stewed beef before off fire.  This dish can be replaced by pork if you do not take beef. But need to reduce the cook time by 30 min.

Slow Cooker Method
From above point 5 - After adding tomatoes, once the stew start to boil, off fire and transfer to slow cooker and set at High heat to allow to cook still you see bubbles. Then add potatoes and let the stew continue to cook until meat is tender. Then switch off electricity.

27 Sep 2016:
Pressure Cooker Method:
After above item 2. , I put raw beef cubes and all the fried onion and potatoes and carrots, etc into pressure cooker and add water to almost cover ingredients and seasoning. Closed the cooker cover. Put to function for beef /mutton and cook until it completed the cycle. It is about 35mins.

You may be interested in some of the meat dish:
1.Char Siew
2.Toaster Oven Roasted Pork Belly- Siew Yuk

Monday 24 September 2012

Sweet Corn Custard Pudding

The last time I made and eaten this pudding was easily 20 years ago. When I was a child, our family used to make this pudding quite often. Back then, whenever there is a party, you will definitely find this dessert on the party table. Sweet corn custard pudding was a quite "popular" when I was a child. Every household seems to know how to make it. Because it is very nice and very easy to make, I guess almost every household know how to make, thus, you will see this dessert everytime there is a party. However,nowadays we hardly see people doing this dessert. So last Friday I went "retro", I decided to make this "long lost" pudding for the alpha course that our cell is hosting. My daughter asked me "what is this?" In fact, this is the first time that she ever see and try this dessert as I have never make them since she was born.
Making and eating this dessert brought me alot of good memory of my childhood and childhood friends and games and things that we used to do and play...

Ingredients :
3/4 cup sugar
1 cup custard powder
2 cups coconut milk
2 1/2 cups water
1 tin (425 g) cream style sweet corn
a pinch of salt
3 leaves of pandan leaves

Method :
1) Wash pandan leaves and put into a blender with 1/2 cup of water. Blend and extract the juice(1/2cup).
2)  Place sugar, salt, custard powder, coconut milk, remaining water(2cups) and pandan juice(1/2 cup) in a deep pot/sauce pan.  Stir till custard powder and sugar dissolve and is not lumpy. Add in the cream sweet corn.
3)  Put to boil on medium flame, stirring all the time till the mixture thicken.
4)  Pour into a lightly oiled 10" square cake tray.  Leave to cool.
5)  Chill in the fridge.  Cut and serve

Friday 7 September 2012


My family loves otak. Especially those otak homemade by my mum-in-law. Part of the reason I learn to make otah as my precious son does not like to eat fish. However, I notice each time when mum-in-law cook this dish, he will keep eating ...so in order to encourage my son to eat fish the only way is to make otak.. Also, would want my son to have the calcium that is found in fish. As for my precious daughter, she likes all types and kind of fishes, so I am always very happy to cook this dish for my family. Each time when I visit the wet market, I will look for Mackerel fish, as this type fish is not found in all season in the market that I patronise. Whenever, I see it, I will buy and store in my freezer. According to my mum-in-law, other kind of fishes are also suitable to use for otah.  I had tried other fish, even those fish fillet sold in NTUC supermarket. After trying few types, I would still prefer using Mackerel fish meat. The texture is better.  So come, let cook !

What do you need ? 
Go to wet market and look for Mackerel Fish. Usually I will buy one whole Mackerel and ask the fishmonger to remove the bone for me before I bring it home (remember to also bring the bone home because there are also meat within the bone, don't waste!) When I reach home, I will wash the fish and remove the meat using a spoon, if I am going to make the otah the same day. However, if I do not have time to make that day, I will keep the fish in freezer and defroze the next time when I am going to use it.

500gm Mackerel Fish Meat                                                       
2 tsp sugar                                                                                 
1 tsp potato flour / cornflour                                                            
3 big tbsp homemade chilli paste / replace with store bought laska chilli paste
1 tsp tumeric powder
a dash of pepper

250gm coconut milk ( I usually use Guan Heng brand)

1.5 tsp sea salt

1. Combine all the ingredients (except coconut milk and salt) in a big bowl. Mix them well with a pair of chopstick or fork.
2. Add coconut milk. Mix them well. (do not over mixed)
3. Add salt and mix them very quickly (do not over mixed. else it will be tough)
4. Cover the bowl of mixture with cling wrap or any kind of cover and leave in the fridge for about an hour. You can always prepare this in the morning and leave them in the fridge until time to cook.
5. Pour the mixture into a baking tray with pre-prepared banana leave on top of alu foil. Level the mixture. Put into oven toaster to toast for 30min. or put into pre-heat oven 220 degree and bake for 20-30min or until it is slight brown.
6. However, if you wish to make like the one in this picture,  instead of pouring everything into a tray, you just need to use your bare hand to make into shape. Bake in oven or toaster for 30min or when it is brown depending on individual oven.

P.s. : Salt has to add last, as once it is added, the mixture will start to harden.

Thursday 5 July 2012


This is a very easy recipe. Whenever  I run out of idea what to eat for breakfast the next morning, I will think of scone. It is easy to make and short preparation time and most important it taste very would whether you eat it plain or with jam and butter. For this reason, I made scone quite often. My family love them too. There were few times my husband commended that those that he bought from bakery are not as nice as homemade scone. And for this reason, I am  encouraged to bake homemade scones  for my family and friends. Sometime, I made them for my cell meeting too. This is also a lovely gift to share with neighbours too.

You may also view this in my facebook page Catherine's Cooking Journal

250g  self-raising flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
50g butter
2 tablespoon caster sugar
75g raisins (you can replace with mixed dried fruit or dried cranberries)
150ml milk (approximately)

Sift the flour and baking powder into a bowl. Rub in the butter until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs, then stir in the sugar and fruit. Add enough milk to give a fairly soft dough.
Turn onto a lightly floured surface, knead very gently (do not over knead) then roll out to a 2 cm thickness. Cut into 5cm rounds and place on a lightly floured baking sheet. Brush with milk and bake in a preheat hot oven , traditional oven 220° C for 10 min -12min or when it is slight brown on the top. Cool on a wire rack.
You can cut it half and spread with butter and jam to serve or just eat it plain.

Note on 18/September/2014:
For the first time I have tried using oven fan function at temp 200°C. To my surprise the scones turn out very good. Using  fan function, the scones brown very fast. Though I have set 10min but at about 8minutes it was almost done. I would suggest 200°C oven fan and bake for 10min. 

Thursday 22 March 2012

Beancurd Roll (Ngoh Hiang 五香)

Learn this beancurd roll  from  my mother-in-law who loves cooking and trying out new dish on her own without recipe. This is the dish that she has been doing it for over 40 years. however family, especially my 2 children, love beancurd roll. As my children love this dish so much thatrecommendfinitely prepare for every Chinese New Year and after years it become a MUST  dish for Chinese New Year. I will prepare them few days before Chinese New Year and store them in the frozen section of my refrigrator.  For this recipe, I have added yam. However, if you do not like yam, you can omit it. Personally, I find with added yam make the beancurd roll tastier because of the  yam texture and the aroma. 

Ingredients :
1 pc of Beancurd skin
500gm Mince Meat
500gm Prawn (mince)
1 carrot                       )          
¼  Yam                        )     cut and chop into small pieces
5 water chestnut        )         
5 stalks spring onion  (cut into small bit)           
1 tbsp five spices powder
1 tbsp coriander powder(Home fried n grind*)
3 tbsp light sauce
1 ½ tsp sugar
2 tsp potato flour (can replace by plain / corn flour)
1 egg
Dash of pepper

Method :
Remove shell  from the prawn. Wash and use kitchen paper towel to dry it. Mince it.
Put all ingredients (except potatoes flour and egg) into a large pot or bowl.  Mixed well. Then add potato flour and egg.  Mix them well. If the mixture is too moisture,  add another teaspoon of flour. Set aside in the fridge if you are not going to wrap them immediately.
Cut the beancurd skin into size of 6cm x 8cm.
Wrap the mixture in the beancurd skin.
Deep fry beancurd roll in pre-heated oil till it is golden brown. 

*Note: Fry the coriander seeds in a wok without oil till fragrant then grind into powder. If you do not have home made coriander powder,  you can omit this item. I would not suggest you buy ready made unless it is fried before grind. As the taste for unfried coriander powder be very different. 

Special note 1: This dish depend alot on the bean skin saltiness.  So I suggest you scoop a small amount n wrap with a small piece of skin n deep fry to taste whether it is to your desire taste. Because I have reduced the saltiness in this recipe. Usually it will be just right. 

Special note 2 (dated 22/Jan/2014) : Some bean skin are very salty whereas some are not. Even the same brand bean skin vary. Yesterday I used the usual one that was bought from Fairfare, it was not salty. Personally, I prefer Fairprice Pasar brand because the colour after deep fried n saltiness is just right for my taste.  Some bean skin turn brown very easily when it is put into hot oil. Would recommend once oil is heated , lower the fire to medium then put in the roll to deep fry then adjust to high fire again. Adjust the fire according to the colour of the bean skin.  Usually, I will use high fire to deep fry. This process of adjusting the fire is to prevent the roll get burn too quickly and meat not cooked. It is recommended to use high fire just before rolls are remove from fire so that the rolls will not be oily when eat.

Friday 10 February 2012

Double Chocolate Chips Muffins

My husband and children love chocolate.  My husband only eat chocolate cake and brownie. He loves chocolate so much that he needs to have one serving every day after dinner. Since they love all kinds of chocolate dessert and cake, I bake this double chocolate muffin with unsweeten cocoa powder and semi-sweet chocolate which give you the rich chocolate favour.

1 ¾ cups all-purpose flour
½ cup unsweeten cocoa powder
½ tsp baking soda
2 tsp baking powder ( add only 1 tsp if use self-raising flour)
¾ cup white sugar
¼ tsp salt
1 ¼ cup fresh milk
1 egg (beat)
125gm butter (melt)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
¾ cup chopped walnut (optional)

Put the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda ,baking powder, chocolate chips, walnut, sugar and salt in big bowl.
Mix melt butter, fresh milk and beated egg in a big jug and pour into the dry ingredients and mix them together. Do not over mixed.
Spoon into the prepared muffin cases. Bake in a preheated oven (175 degree celcius) for 20-25 minutes.

You may like to try these muffins recipes
1. Blueberry Yogurt Muffins
2. Blueberry Banana Muffins
3. Orange Muffins