Wednesday, October 31, 2007

STEAMED MINCED PORK WITH SALTED DUCK EGG


There are variations to this steamed dish... some have mui chai and others with egg. I've added the egg white in the pork mix rather than have the whole egg nestled on top of the minced pork; this gives the meat salty flavor of the egg and gives the meat a creamy texture. Note both the egg and the Dōngcài are salty, and the amount of soy sauce used is a rough estimation.

This little bowl of steamed pork is good for 2 persons.







INGREDIENTS

140 gm. Minced Pork

2 Tsp. Light Soy Sauce

3 Tsp. Tapioca Flour

2 Tsp. Cooking Oil

1 Tsp. White Pepper

4 Tsp. Water

3 Tsp. Tiānjīn Dōngcài

1 Salted Duck Egg



METHOD


Mix the minced pork with all the ingredients except the duck egg. Stir to combine everything, making sure the Dōngcài does stay as a lump in one place.

Crack the salted duck egg, and separate the white from its yolk.

Pour the egg white into the marinated pork mix. Combine well and finally pat the meat mixture down well to form a smooth surface.

Use a teaspoon to scoop up the egg yolk. Lower into the center of marinated pork. Gently make a depression using the bottom of the spoon so that the yolk sits slightly buried into the minced pork. Put into the fridge for 15 minutes before steaming.

Prepare your pot or wok for steaming. When steam escapes from the cover wok/pot, place in the bowl of marinated pork to be steamed. Put a lid on top of the bowl to prevent water seeping into pork. Cover and steam for for 15 minutes.

Uncover the bowl; if the yolk is translucent, steam for another 5 minutes without the lid on the bowl.


Tuesday, October 30, 2007

TAIWANESE BREAKFAST @ DONG FENG PO, LORONG 1, JALAN SONG THIAN CHEOK, KUCHING

Minced Pork Mushroom Noodle

I've to do this in reverse order.... I first tried out this place a few months ago for its lunch; but I'll serve the breakfast first. We were here on a Sunday morning, slightly after nine, and we were the first customers, and only customers by the time we finished.

I think we were a bit early 'cos some of the items on the menu were not available. The minced pork mushroom can be considered as kampua/kolo mee tossed in the before said concoction. Pretty much Spaghetti ala Chinois. The Beehoon which I didn't try looked pretty decent; at least have the decency not to overflow the plate with its sauce like most Zi-Chars would .

Saucy Fried Beehoon (Vermicelli)

I think it would be a fallacy not to try its beef noodle... so an order of Taiwanese Beef Noodle we did try. The soup seemed like it had gone through the rigorous regime of boil and boil... thick and full of flavor. Notice the odd bits at the side and rim of the bowl, and the on Chinese Cabbage? Residue from arduous brewing. Either the chef stayed up overnight to to come up with the soup, or this was a leftover from the previous day that had witnessed hours of reboiling and simmering; seemed more like the latter.

Braised Beef Noodle Soup

Monday, October 29, 2007

ZI-CHAR @ KL SPECIAL, E-TASTE FOOD COURT, RH PLAZA, KUCHING

Vietnamese Chicken

This back of the coffee shop kitchenette has undergone several ownership; this one being the latest. Calling itself 'KL Special' and some of the dishes bearing the tag has something to be reckoned with; One thing for sure, the chef is from K.L. That's good enough for me (never mind whether it's K.L. authentic or not)!

Hardly 10 minutes after our order, all food were delivered to our table. They didn't have one of the KL Special Tofu, but had the one below instead. I asked: "What's the difference?" Well, they ran out of the K.L. sauce; I wonder what it is - will find out the next time. Overall the food isn't bad - a bit different from the normal Sarawak fare. Best of all is the price......
RM24.40 (served 3).

KL Tofu

Preserved Mustard Green Soup

Fried Sambal Midin

Saturday, October 27, 2007

BREAKFAST @ MERRY FOOD CENTRE, JALAN FOOCHOW, KUCHING

Kampua Classic

This is the corner coffee shop around the bend from Big Horse (Too Kar P'ng'S palace). It has a collection of Foochow stalls. This weekly ritual of Laksa had a slight diversion; we ended farther from the usual route, but along the same stretch nonetheless.

First off, Prolink Wong said his Kampua tasted as good as it looked - words from a Foochow's mouth. Notice the thick slab of red food coloring on the Char Sui - pretty authentic Foochow-looking stuff!

Collective Dim-Sum Baskets

On the other hand, the food that came in the Dim-Sum baskets looked pretty appetizing, which sometimes is deceiving. The chicken's feet and the Har Kow were pretty decent, but the spareribs was too sweet. I think it's one of those wholesale Dim-Sum made a few blocks up the road.

Chicken's Feet With Black Beans

Har-Kow

Spareribs

The two items below were from the Zi-Char back kitchen. It's stuff that stuffs you up, quantity-wise (plenty of noodle), but meager on the liao department. What do you expect from a RM3 deal?

Chow-Chai Hung Ngan

Foochow Fried Noodle

Friday, October 26, 2007

CHINESE DINNER @ CHEFS SPECIAL, 3RD. MILE ROCK ROCK, KUCHING

House specialty: Cantonese Roast Duck

With a name like Chef's Special, you'd think you've hit the jackpot of gourmet mecca... Wrong! That's farther from the truth; the thing I usually do for a first-timer is to have the maitre d' recommend the house's specialty. When you hear things like "steamed fish, fired midin, beansprout, venison etc., etc." rolling off his tongue, then you go: "Uh-oh!" (Pssst! Doesn't it sound like a regular Zi-Char place?).

The only dish that stood out was the hot plate; even then it wasn't that outstanding. The roast duck is the restaurant signature's dish. If you had tried its duck during its last incarnation at 4th Mile Penrissen's Lau Tee Fang, then you'd appreciate its plum, juicy and crisp duck. The meal came to RM150 for 5 pax, which was more expensive than the meal we had at the Banquet. The drinks were expensive for soft drinks only; I suppose it's the extra charge for the privilege of using the karaoke room (upstairs). The total bill was RM190. For the type of food served here, you can get it cheaper elsewhere, just as good, if not better.

Watercress Soup with Spare Ribs

Hot Plate: Assorted Seafood & Mushrooms

Fried Rice With Salted Fish

Fried Chanko Manis With Egg

Ang-Sio Chiok-Pang

The only thing enlightening that came out of the whole episode was the waiter who serving us. He's a Malay (with Chinese Mum - both parents deceased) working in a non-halal restaurant. We asked him of his predicament; his reply was that as long as the guy upstairs understands, and it's something between him and God. Sometimes you just wish the Muslim religious body can speak in such volumes.

Someone who inspires me to blog in the first place has come out of the closet, so to speak...

Thursday, October 25, 2007

FRIED KOAY TEOW @ BERJAYA KEDAI KOPI, CAPITAL GARDEN, 4 Ml. PENRISSEN ROAD, KUCHING


When someone, who lives on the other side of town (Matang) says that the koay teow (flat rice noodle) here is so good, this I've got to find out! This housing estate at the 4 Mile Penrissen Road is not known for its culinary divinity, rather than for its only row of shop houses that deal mostly with sundry stuff.

Nothing extraordinary here... just plain fried noodle as you would find anywhere. The tomato koay teow has the usual ingredients of little shrimps, char sui, fish cake slices and vegetable, and dry fried one has similar stuff, unlike the usual bean sprouts and egg. So what so special about the noodle here? To each his/her own...
like the man said, it all boils down to taste.

Alas, this is only one of the many "tips" of the must-eat places I've received so far. Sometimes the expectation exceeds the reality of a simple offering. Mulder and Scully would have said: "The truth is out there." But scoffing the truth can sometimes be murder and scary.

* I think this stall on the five-foot-way operates only in the evening. Correct me if I'm wrong.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

QUICK LAMB CASSEROLE


I don't know what you'll call this... I guess it's Whatchamacallit... something that can be quickly whipped out.

PREPARATION
Discard the bones from the lamb, and dice. Marinate the meat and set aside for an hour before use.

Cut the onions into wedges, mushrooms into bite size, and the carrots into bite chunks. Cut the chilli into cubes, and minced the garlic. Canned peeled tomatoes are used here.




MEAT MARINADE

500 gm. Lamb Chop

1 Tsp. Dill

1 Tsp. Sugar

1 Tbsp. Kikkoman Soy Sauce

1 Tbsp. Oil

1 Tbsp. Cornflour


OTHER INGREDIENTS

100 gm. Button Mushroom • 1 Onion • 1 Clove Garlic 70 gm. Carrot
1 Chilli (seeded) • 2 Tomatoes1 Tbsp. Tau Cheo (Fermented Yellow Beans)
• 1 Tbsp. Granulated Chicken Stock



METHOD


Heat up 4 tbsp. of cooking oil, and brown the button mushrooms. Set aside.

Sweat the onions until soft before putting in the garlic. Fry until fragrant.

Add in the marinated meat; sear all sides.

Put in the rest of the vegetables.

Combine well all the meat and vegetables for about a minute or so.

Add the yellow beans (Tau Cheo) to the mix. Stir well.

Finally put in the tomatoes. Use the spatula to slightly mashed them up.

Rinse the bowl used for the meat marinade with 1 cup of water. Pour the liquid into the casserole; just enough to cover meat and stuff. Add 1 tbsp. of granulated chicken stock. Stir and cover.

Simmer for half an hour. Add salt to taste, then add cornflour slurry to thicken slightly. Ready to be served.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

SNOW SHAVED ICE @ IGLOOL ICE CREAM, GOLDEN COURT COMMERCIAL CENTRE, 4TH. MILE PENRISSEN ROAD, KUCHING

Milk Ice with Mango Jam


Of late there has been several of these ice parlor popping up over the city. Whether it's a sustainable business or just a flash in the pan like the Taiwanese pearl drink fad has yet to be seen.

This is no more than flavored ice blocks that are finely shaved; it's more than sleet than snow 'cos the thing melts in your mouth than stay in a lump like the kangtong (snowball). They even advise you not to stir the shaved ice concoction, otherwise it will sort of disintegrate.


Green Tea Ice with Red Bean

Peanut Ice with Chocolate

Yogurt with Mulberry Jam

Strawberry/Red Bean Snow Ice

How does it taste? It's light and fluffy... the ice, no matter the type you order, is very lightly flavored; it's the accompaniments that make the ice dessert complete. After consuming your cup of ice, you'd be wondering to yourself: "Did I just take that?" It felt like nothing at all!

This would have been a perfect chill out place had it not been in such a desolated location... inside a mall would have been ideal, or next to a more popular eatery, where you can just pop in after a meal for just dessert.

ABOUT THIS BLOG

As the name implies, it's all about nothing! Kongkaying is like grasping in the air - more like hot air with occasional fartulence. Hopefully, something aromatic will come out of it! If not...

May the Farce be With You!

BAG OF TRICKS

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