Monday, May 29, 2006

Japanese Fare

I has been 3 weeks since I started on my cooking "experiments" and I must admit that it gets a little addictive at times. The urge to try out something new is always on my mind and I can't help it but to constantly surf around for new recipes to whip up in the kitchen.

Though I have yet to satisfy any cravings (well, I am a potato chip junkie so I can always buy my favourite Calbee Hot and Spicy chips off the shelf), it still brings great satisfaction seeing the food I try out turn out successful and well, platable.

I made it a Japanese themed week as I tried out Tonkatsu chicken with japanese curry, chawanmushi as well as green tea ice-cream with red bean paste. Of course with the Tonkatsu chicken and chawanmushi recipes taken from ruth's website :) Her zeal for cooking and her clear instructions make her blog a definite visit for me everytime I go online!

CHICKEN TONKATSU (adapted from ruth)

1 cup of Panko (leftovers from what I bought from a Japanese supermarket and its different from tempura flour)

1 egg, beaten

3/4 to 1 cup of flour (I used leftover self raising flour from my muffins) and I think 3/4 cup of flour would be sufficient as there was lots of leftover when I used 1 cup.

2 boneless chicken thigh meat (as the pieces were too big, I cut them into 4 pieces)

1) Season the meat with salt and pepper (me, having not seasoned anything before.. I added about 5 dashes of pepper and 2 dashes of salt and it tasted pretty ok)

2) Cover the meat in flour, dredge it in egg and cover the meat in panko in this order, ensuring that all parts of the meat is covered (and as ruth suggested to have a production line with these 3 ingredients lined up together so it facilitates the meat to go from flour to egg to panko easily)

3) Refrigerate for an hour (this is to allow the breaded layer to stiffen and stick to the meat)

4) Heat up the oil and wait for the oil to be ready (well, I used a dangerous method of placing my arm over the oil to see if its hot enough :) but for ruth she waited till she saw small bubbles rising and waited for another minute) and deep fry meat till golden brown

5) I also steamed hot a packet of ready mix golden curry for about 5 minutes and poured it on top of the chicken before serving

CHAWANMUSHI (adapted from ruth)

2 eggs, beaten

3/4 to 1 cup chicken stock (well, I used chicken soup that my mum was boiling) If you like your chawanmushi watery, 1 cup of stock will be nice but if you prefer it less watery, you can try 3/4 cup

1 tbsp sake (but I used chinese wine from my mum's kitchen)

1/2 tbsp soya sauce

1/4 - 1/2 tbsp sugar (I found 1/2 tbsp sugar a bit too sweet so I guess 1/4 should be just right)

I added some mixed mushrooms I found from the supermarket

1) Mix all the ingredients together and pour into container but do not cover the container as it allows the chawanmushi to set and cook faster

2) Boil water in steamer till very hot and lower the chawanmushi into the steamer and put the fire to low to allow egg to set smoothly

3) I steamed my chawanmushi for a good whole 30 mins


Well, I found this at Medi-ya a few weeks ago and the picture was just so tempting! Though the actual ice cream I made out didn't look that presentable (well, thats why I didn't put up any pictures), it tasted rich and milky and really really nice!! I bought a packet of ready made red bean paste found at Medi-ya as well and it complemented the green tea ice cream!!

Though the instructions were in Japanese, I could sort of decipher the ingredients as well as the proportions by looking at their pictures behind the package :)


1) 1 egg yolk beaten

2) 3/4 cup milk

3) Add the green tea mix and mix well till all dissolved and freeze for about 3 hours

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Friday, May 26, 2006

I got something new, something blue, something wonderful and picture perfect too!

A present from my sister - my very first cookbook :)

As a form of encouragement to me, my sister thought I would love to try out more muffins!

Considering the fact that I am someone who hates to read, she got me this book because of its great yummalicious pictures too! I would probably try out some of the recipes from the book one of these days! Hopefully I would be able to take some great pictures like they do in the book!

Monday, May 22, 2006

Tandoori Chicken

My first try at cooking a meal... thanks to ruth's wonderful trusty & easy peasy recipe for tandoori chicken and Zu's kitchen for the strawberry yoghurt ice cream. Though, I can't help but to admit that I surfed all around to gather recipes to make the 1kg tub of yoghurt sitting in the fridge to good use :)

I had wanted to try out the saffron rice but was afraid to do so, despite spending 10 bucks on a small mini container of red stringy like herb. Questions were running thru my mind.. would it stain my rice pot? will my mum scream if she realises her pot turns a funny yellow? will my guests like the smell/taste of saffron rice? Will normal sugar do instead of brown sugar? I guess I would be more adventurous and try it out the next time round :)

My guests loved the tandoori chicken! Though it was eaten with plain rice, we finished an entire chicken. Just the 3 of us.

The tandoori was so tender because of the yoghurt and when coupled with nice sweet tomatoes, it was even more tasty! I guess I could have tandoori for the entire week :D

After meal dessert was strawberry yoghurt ice cream but I guess I was over enthusiatic with the yoghurt as it was a tad too sour. Plus, I bought strawberries that were also sour (oh well, they were cheap as well and probably not in season). And because I was so eager to try it and yet afraid it will melt, I took a few pics that turned out blurrish and have thus not posted them up

Thank goodness my guest came with cheesecake as a backup plan so after the yoghurt ice cream we induldged in some strawberry new york cheesecake and oreos cheesecake!

INGREDIENTS and DIRECTIONS for TANDOORI CHICKEN (adapted from ruth's website)

About 1 small spring chicken (well, I cut it up into 8 pieces so I could associate with ruth's recipe)

Marinade chicken

with 3 full tablespoons of plain yoghurt (I must admit I just took 3 scoops.. didn't matter if it was slightly more and over heaped)


3 slightly heaped tablespoons of "sharwood's tandoori spice mix" and added it according to the color of the marinade and to ensure all parts of the chicken was covered

And place it in the fridge overnight

Well, I do admit that the yoghurt does really tenderise the meat! *yummy!*

the tandoori chicken was grilled for about 30 mins including flipping it at about 200 degress inside the good ol' trusted electric turbo boiler :)


Saturday, May 13, 2006

The journey of this blog begins here... and as the name suggests, all the recipes I try out here are without an oven. So, if you are like me, with an oven-less kitchen, do not be afraid to try out these recipes, because even without an oven, we can still cook up a storm :)

It was after hearing my sister and her friend rave about cooking their desired cravings over and over again, that made me decide to start learning to cook. Well, I must admit that I often imagine myself fighting while cooking a fish (holding a pot cover shielding myself) and make a mess just preparing ingredients (with probably half being wasted)... and this is why I never attempted to cook.

But, in spite of all these, I guess we all have phases we go through and I do hope that cooking will become part of me and not fade off with time..

So, my first attempt was baking cooking chocochip coffee with cream cheese muffin! Well, thanks to a wonderful fuss-free recipe from thelazychef! but of course without an oven but a electric turbo-boiler

Slightly modified version of thelazychef's recipe:


1 1/2 cups self raising flour

1/2 cup white sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 cup mini hersheys chocolate chips

1/4 cup vegetable oil

1 egg

2 tbsp Baileys/Kahlua/Orange Juice

2 tsp instant coffee dissolved in 1 tbsp hot water (But i used coffee milk from meiji)

1/3 cup milk

Mix the flour, sugar, salt, baking powder and hersheys chocolate chips. Pour oil (well, i used olive oil) into 1 measuring cup; add egg, the coffee milk from meiji, Baileys and more coffee milk to fill the cup.Mix this with teh flour mixture.


125g cream cheese (basically half of a 250g tub i bought)

1 tsp vanilla essence

60g icing sugar (but i used about 4 full teaspoons as I have a weighing scale-less kitchen as well)

1 egg


1) Preheat turbo boiler to 190 degrees

2) Create muffin batter as instructed above.

3) Spoon batter to fill 1/2 the muffin cases. (if your case is bigger than normal, fill it to 3/4)

4) Cook in turbo boiler for 10 minutes at 110 degrees (my first attempt at cooking it at 190 degrees had my muffins burnt)

5) Mix ingredients for cream cheese till fluffy and well combined.

6) Remove muffins from oven and carefully spoon the fluffy cream cheese mixture over.

7) Return to the turbo boiler and cook it for another 15 minutes at 110 degrees or till cheese topping turns a nice color.. if you like your cheese more burnt, wait till it turns more golden brown :)

Sift some cocoa powder and icing sugar over the top if desired!! (well, for mothers day, i used the hershey mini kisses to form a heart shape at the top of the muffin!)