All posts filed under: Main Course

Chili Prawn Chow Mein (Stir-Fried Noodles) recipe

Chilli Prawn Chow Mein (Stir-Fried Noodles)

Chow Mein literally translates to ‘Fry Noodles’ and it is one of the most popular types of food in Southeast China, in fact, in most southeast Asian countries. Different country or even different region has its own style and flavour. Some use wheat noodles (most common) and some use rice noodle. Thick noodles, thin noodles, crispy or saucy, with meat or vegetarian, spicy or umami. It is amazingly versatile that one can make up one’s own version easily, and guarantee with big flavour. The key is to prepare all ingredients before the actual cooking, because once you start cooking, it will take merely minutes to finish. The best equipment to use is steel wok or cast iron wok, because it keeps the heat well within so the food will be cooked evenly and deliciously in a short period of time. I don’t have neither but a non-stick wok works fine as well. Remember to keep the stove on high/medium high at all time, so you will need to pay attention while you are cooking to …

Kimchi Miso Soup, Asparagus, Mushroom, Black Bean Noodle recipe

Kimchi Miso Soup with Asparagus, Mushroom and Black Bean Noodles

One of my absolute favourite noodle soups of all time, it has all the right tastes a bowl of noodle soup should have, it’s spicy, tangy and rich in umami. Apart from the taste, what I also like about this soup is you can literally use any vegetables you like (a great way to use up all the ends of vegetables in your fridge), or if you prefer it meaty, add cooked chicken or roasted beef etc. I was recommended to this black bean noodle when I was searching for other gluten free noodle options. I really like its taste and it has a bit of a springy texture and it is almost impossible to over cook it, made with black soy bean, these noodles is also packed full of protein and fibre. But again, if gluten is not a problem for you, you can substitute it with any other types of noodle you prefer (you can even use spaghetti if that’s what you have) . As long as you make the soup base right, …

Mung Bean Pancakes with Spring Vegetables recipe

Mung Bean Pancakes with Spring Vegetables

This spring vegetable pancake is inspired by one of my favourite Korean dishes – Bindaetteok, which is usually made with pork and kimchi. I used to eat Bindaetteok a lot when I lived in London, with my Korean friends in my favourite Korean restaurant on Tottenham Court Road. A bottle of Shoju (Korean version of Sake) and an endless supply of Bindartteok, together with a bowl of hot kimchi tofu stew, it was one of the most enjoyable times in my student life. I forgot how much I love this type of pancake until I had it again on Chinese New Year evening, my family and I went to a Korean restaurant in the neighbourhood and they offered pancakes to us as a complimentary snack for our drinks. The girl who served us said that no Korean will be drinking without these pancakes on the side. We were of course happy to accept her offer and those pancakes were delicious. I have been thinking of making these pancakes at home for a while, and finally, …

Bacalhau Guisado - Salted Cod Stew Recipe

Bacalhau Guisado – Portuguese Salt Cod Stew

For some reasons, this stew reminds me so much of home: Macau, my family and my childhood. From the moment the stew started bubbling on the stove, the distant but familiar aroma escaped from the pot, which I have known since I was a child; to every bite of this dish, the combination of the different tastes and textures were in fact something that I have been longing for – without knowing and unable to describe. But why am I telling you this? I know it probably might not be so relevant to you, but I am convinced that everyone has a dish/food that they once loved but somehow its existence has buried under their many other recent memories. For me, this salt cod stew is one of them, I love and enjoy every bite and every taste of this dish, it reminds me of the many trips our family made to our favourite Portuguese restaurant, where we enjoyed its food immensely. Because of this, Portuguese food became part of our family food culture, it was …

Spicy Mushroom and Kale Stir-Fry recipe

20 Minutes Spicy Mushroom and Kale Stir-Fry

This mushroom stir-fry will only take you 20 minutes to make, a perfect week night meal which is not only full of flavours: smoky, spicy with a wonderful umami taste, but also packed with nutrients: both vegetables are low in calories and two very good sources of various vitamins. It is so easy to make and so delicious that there is no more excuse not to include more mushroom and kale in your diet. It can also be easily made vegan. This recipe makes more than enough for two, it tastes even better the next day. I will double the recipe amount next time so that I can enjoy it throughout the week. I serve it with rice here but other fantastic alternatives will be quinoa, noodles, pasta, creamy polenta or even in tortilla for tacos! Note: you don’t have to be too specified with the amount of water which is added into the dish during cooking, some mushrooms release more water than others so water should be added gradually, 100ml at a time. If …

Char Siu - Chinese Style BBQ Pork recipe

Roasted Chinese Style Pork Filet served with Ginger Spring Onion Sauce

Exactly one week today will be Chinese New Year day. If you are planning to host a big new year party, I hope you are nearly ready with all the ideas that I have prepared you since the last couple of weeks (on the blog, my facebook page and Instagram). But I am not stopping with my Chinese food theme yet, today I have another recipe for you. This roasted pork recipe is one of my childhood favourites, it is known as Char Siu 叉燒 in Cantonese. The original cooking method is barbecue but I roasted mine instead (maybe I will try barbecue it in the summer with our outdoor grill) since I find the top grill of my oven is not the best and I want the pork to cook evenly inside the oven. The filet came out nicely charred on the outside and tender and juicy on the inside, because of the long marinating time, the flavour has developed deep into the meat. No wonder it is one of the most popular dishes …

Braised Aubergine Ramen in Spicy Blackbean Sauce recipe

Braised Aubergine Ramen in Spicy Black Bean Sauce

I have the most vivid memory of my mother making this black bean sauce, she would mash the fermented black bean with the end of the knife handle together with crushed garlic, she would work on it patiently until it was well mashed and combined. After that, she added soy sauce, sugar, sesame oil and mix it into a thick glossy paste. The aroma of the umami black bean and the strong pungent garlic filled our tiny kitchen. I have no idea why I remember so well with her making this particular sauce since I had learned so many other homemade sauces from her. But whatever reason it might be, it remains one of my favourite sauces to make if I crave for a taste of home as it will always remind me of this picture, in which my beloved mother and I stood in our kitchen together, making dinner for the whole family. When I was planning this week’s recipe, I wanted to make something Chinese, not because I was homesick (yes I do miss …

Braised Aubergine with Pork in Spicy Bean Sauce recipe

Braised Aubergine and Pork in Spicy Bean Sauce

The incredible aroma of this dish fills up the air in our apartment, it brings me straight down to memory lane.  This Braised Aubergine and Pork in Spicy Bean Sauce is definitely one of my favourite childhood dishes, whenever I cook this dish, the smell always reminds me of my mother’s cooking and our small compact kitchen in Macau. Traditionally, this dish is cooked with dried cured salted fish which is a famous locally produced delicacy in Macau, which gives the dish an extra layer of intense umami flavour, hence its name   魚香茄子 ‘fish fragrant aubergine’.  Unfortunately, I can’t get hold onto this amazing ingredient for my recipe I am sharing with you today, so I used dashi stock for the sauce instead, which still provides a subtle umami note to the whole dish.  But if you don’t have dashi stock, just use water with a splash of fish sauce (optional) and it will still be brilliantly delicious! Ingredients: 2 Japanese (Asian) Aubergine, or 1 small globe aubergine if not available, peel lengthwise partially, …

Tamari Peanut Tofu with Courgette Ribbons recipe

Crispy Tamari Peanut Tofu served with Courgette Ribbons

I know tofu is not everyone’s cup of tea, some insist that it is bland and flavourless, but if you cook it right, tofu is wonderfully delicious and pack full of protein.  The key is to pair it with a sharp and well-seasoned sauce/dressing and it will absorb all the flavours like a sponge.  This recipe here calls for firm tofu and my favourite way to cook it is to dust it first with seasoned corn starch or potato starch, then pan-fry it until crispy and golden brown, follows by coating them generously with the silky and flavourful Tamari Peanut sauce just before serving.  The second you sink your teeth into a piece of these luscious jewels, you will change your mind about tofu forever. Ingredients: Serves 2 200g Organic Non-GMO firm tofu 3/4 – 1 cup Potato starch (or corn Starch) 1-2 tsp. garlic powder 1 medium courgette Sesame seeds (for garnish) Vegetable oil for frying For the peanut sauce: 2 tbsp. pure peanut butter 1 tbsp. tamari or regular soy sauce (if gluten …

chicken karaage served with Sriracha Mayo recipe

Chicken Karaage served with Sriracha Mayo

This Japanese style fried chicken dish has been one of my favourites for many years, the perfect karaage is crispy on the outside and tender, juicy and full of flavour on the inside. The important step is to marinate the meat for at least an hour or even overnight, which ensures that the meat soaks up all the lovely flavours; and it will take on a nice golden colour when fried. Before frying, the meat should be at room temperature so that it won’t cool down the oil while placing in, in another word, the meat will be cooked quicker instead of sitting in the oil longer to wait for the temperature to raise up again, which also means crispier! The size of the meat matters, the smaller the cut, the faster they cook. I find the perfect size is a ‘2-bites’ size, which mean a piece that can be eaten in two bites. Chicken thigh is commonly used for Karaage, but I use breast here and it is equally juicy and finger licking! Note: I didn’t …