Thursday, November 27, 2008

Salmon and Rice Cakes


1 cup (200 g) Calrose rice*
1 salmon steak (about 200 g)
1 tbsp oil
1 tsp finely chopped ginger
½ tbsp finely chopped parsley
Salt and freshly grounded black pepper


Cook rice in a rice cooker with 1½ cups of water and ½ tsp of salt. When ready, fluff up with a fork and leave to cool.

Season salmon with salt and pepper and pan fry on medium heat for 3-4 minutes on either side. Transfer onto a plate and using 2 forks, roughly flake the fish and remove all bones and skin. Combine the fish, rice, ginger and parsley. Season to taste.

With clean, moist hands, press the rice mixture into “burger” shaped patties, roughly 5 cm across. Compress the cakes well so that they won’t fall apart when pan-fried.

Heat a frying pan over medium heat and lightly grease it by wiping it with a paper towel that has been dipped in cooking oil. Cook the rice cakes until lightly browned and crisp on both sides.

Serve immediately with tomato and onion salsa.

*This Japanese rice has the perfect sticky texture for this recipe but if you don’t stock it, substitute by using ½ cup glutinous rice and ½ cup regular rice.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Five Low-Fat Ways To Cook Potatoes

1. Make your own oven chips. Heat oven to 200ºC. Cook potatoes in boiling water for 5 minutes. Drain, dry and cut into thick chips. Brush a non-stick baking tray with a little oil. Toss chips in beaten white of 1 egg. Shake off the excess and spread chips out on tray. Bake for 35 minutes turning half way through.

2. Mash potatoes with skimmed milk and low-fat spread instead of butter.

3. Serve jacket potatoes with low-fat natural yogurt or add lemon juice and black pepper.

4. Low-fat roast potatoes. Parboil the potatoes. Heat oven to 200ºC. Mix ½ teaspoon salt with 1 tablespoon olive oil in a bowl. Coat the potatoes in the oil, then place on a baking tray and roast for 50-55 minutes, until crispy.

5. Make boulangére potatoes with stock instead of cream and cheese. Thinly slice potatoes and an onion. Soak the slices in cold water for 15 minutes. Heat oven to 180ºC. Drain and dry the potatoes and onions. Layer with salt, pepper and grated nutmeg in a shallow ovenproof dish. Pour over 600 ml vegetables stock mixed with a crushed clove of garlic. Dot with a low-fat spread and bake in oven for 1 hour 30 minutes.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Tomato and Onion Salsa


1 ripe medium-sized tomato, diced
½ medium onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 tbsp roughly chopped fresh coriander
1 tbsp tomato ketchup
1 tbsp chilli sauce
1 freshly squeezed lime juice


Combine all ingredients in a small bowl and chill until required – the salsa can be made up to an hour earlier and kept refrigerated.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Barley with Bean Curd


50 gm barley grains
1 sheet thin soya skin (foo pei)
4 pandan leaves
100 gm shelled gingko (pak kor)
100 gm shelled lotus seeds
100 gm dried melon sticks
200 gm rock sugar
2 litres water


Rinse all ingredients and put to boil with the water in a deep pot. When the barley grains are softened and the rock sugar melted, remove the pandan leaves and serve the drink with a bit of each ingredient, in individual dessert bowls or glasses.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Prawn Sambal


500 gm medium sized prawns, shelled
Salt to taste
4 kasturi limes
6 tbsp oil
1 tbsp sugar (optional)

To grind:

20 dried chillies
10 fresh chillies
10 gm belachan (shrimp paste)
6 buah keras (candlenuts)
20 twin shallots


Heat oil in skillet and fry ground ingredients till fragrant. Add prawns and toss briefly before adding salt and sugar. Prawns are cooked when they changed to pinkish colour.

Remove from heat at once and squeeze lime juice over. Serve hot with cucumber slices.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Steamed Egg with Cream Corn


3 eggs
1 glass of water
4 tbsp cream corn
1 tomato, diced
Some green peas


½ glass of stock
Some sugar, salt and sesame oil
1 tbsp light soy sauce and cornflour


Beat eggs up. Stir water and seasonings in. Pour into a deep plate. Steam for about 10 mins.

Heat some oil to sauté diced tomato, green peas and cream corn. Add sauce in for boiling until done. Pour into the steamed egg.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Chicken Wings with Shredded Dried Mandarin Peel


8 chicken wings (mid-section)
1 dried mandarin peel, shredded
1 tsp cornflour
Some ginger slices


2 tbsp water
1 tsp cornflour and light soy sauce
Some sesame oil and sugar


½ glass of water
1 tsp oyster sauce and light soy sauce
Some sesame oil and sugar


Marinade chicken wings for 15 mins. Scald and drain.

Heat 1 tbsp oil to sauté slices of ginger and shreds of dried mandarin peel. Add in chicken wings for stir-frying.

Add in sauce, cook briefly. Then thicken with sauce. Dish-up.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Getting Rid of Kitchen Smells

Here are some tips on how to get rid of kitchen smells.

Plastic containers and plastic-lined jam or lids can become smelly if left closed. Fill with or soak with water, adding 3 tsp bicarbonate of soda per half litre. Leave overnight.

Frying pans with ageing non-stick surfaces can absorb the smell of fish or spices. Fill with water, add 4 tbsp of vinegar and bring to the boil.

To remove the smell of garlic, cheese or smoked fish from your hands, rub them with half a lemon. This will also remove stains.

Keep foods wrapped in the fridge to prevent smell contamination. Don’t keep root vegetables or onions in there at all – they spread smells and store better in a cool dark space.

To get smells out of the air, halve an onion and leave it lying out in a saucer.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Deep Fried Noodle with Prawn and Egg


½ pkt egg noodle
250 g large prawns – clean and shell
50 g snow peas
½ tin button mushrooms
50 g carrot – cut into pcs
1 egg – beat lightly
2 cloves garlic – smashed
3 tsp cornstarch – mix with water
Salt to taste


Heat wok with oil until smoky. Deep fry noodles very briefly. Keep aside.

Heat work with 2 tbsp oil, fry garlic until fragnant, add peas, carrot, mushrooms and prawns. Stir-fry for one minute and 2 rice bowls of water and bring to boil. Add beaten egg, stir-fry and then pour in corn starch to thicken the sauce.

Pour sauce over the deep fried noodles and serve.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Pasta in Basil and Tomato Shrimp Broth


300g prawns (peeled and set the shells aside)
1 carrot
1 stick of celery
1 onion
6 cups of water
Spaghetti for 4 persons
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp chopped garlic
1 onion (chopped finely)
White wine
4 ripe tomatoes (chopped)
Fresh basil leaves
Salt and pepper to taste


Make a seafood stock by boiling 6 cups of water with prawn shells, carrot, celery and onion in a pot and simmer till reduced.

Cook the spaghetti in a pot of boiling salted water till al dente or slightly firm to the bite. Drain noodles and set aside.

Heat the olive oil in a hot pan and sauté the garlic and chopped onion till soft. Add a splash of white wine to moisten. Strain stock into the saucepan and add in the ripe tomatoes.

When boiling, add the prawns. Turn off the heat and wait for the prawns to turn pink. Ladle broth and prawns over drained pasta, just enough to cover, dress with fresh basil leaves and pepper and serve hot.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Cucumber Salad


1 medium size cucumber
2 red chillies, sliced
2 green chillies, sliced
30 gm dried prawns, roasted and coarsely pounded
1 big onion, cut into rings
Juice of 5 kasturi limes
Salt and sugar to taste


Wash and groove cucumber with a fork, then slice thinly. Keep cucumbers in refrigerator until ready to use as they taste better chilled. Mix and toss all the ingredients in a salad bowl just before serving.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Remoulade Sauce

This is a wonderful sauce for cold seafood, prawns, crabs and steamed fish. Serve it also with fish and chips or use as a salad dressing and sandwich spread.


3 cups of mayonnaise
3 hard-boiled eggs, chopped
1 onion, chopped
1 tbsp capers, finely minced
1 tbsp mustard
Juice of half a lemon
4 tbsp pickled gherkins, chopped
1 tbsp spring onion, chopped
2 tbsp parsley, chopped


Mix all ingredient and store in a jar in the refrigerator. This sauce keeps up to a month or more in the refrigerator.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Yam Rice


2 cups rice – wash and drain
250 g yam – cube
3 to 4 tbsp oil
4 shallots – slice
3 dried mushrooms – soak and chop finely
25 g dried prawns – wash and drain

For seasoning:

1 tbsp oyster sauce
1 tbsp light soy sauce
1 tbsp sesame sauce
½ cub chicken stock
½ tsp sugar to taste
3 cups of water
2 pandan leaves – knot


Heat oil in a wok and lightly brown the shallots. Remove the shallot crisps and drain well. Leave aside.

Add dried prawns and sauté until fragrant. Stir-fry yam and mushrooms. Add rice and seasoning. Stir-fry well.

Dish rice mixture into an electronic rice cooker. Add water and pandan leaves and cook rice as usual. Stand rice in cooker for 10 to 15 minutes before dishing out to serve. Serve rice with a sprinkling of shallot crisps, chopped spring onions and coriander.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Garlic Chicken


1 kg chicken pieces
4 cloves garlic
6 tbsp oyster sauce
12 black mushrooms
1 tsp ground black pepper
2 cups Chinese rice wine
2 tbsp thick soy sauce
½ litre water
2 cm piece ginger, bruised
6 tbsp sesame oil
Salt to taste
Spring onions and Chinese parsley (for garnishing)


Soften mushrooms by soaking them in a bowl of water. Dish out mushrooms but do not throw water away. Peel garlic.

Heat oil in a work and fry ginger till a light golden brown. Add chicken pieces and mushrooms. Stir fry till chicken is half cooked before adding the rest of the ingredients. Add the mushroom water, more if necessary till all the meat is nearly covered.

Cook for about 35 minutes or until half the liquid has evaporated.

Serve with rice.