Good S$13.80nett Teochew Muay Buffet @ Gimtim on 9May2016

teochew muay buffet dishes

teochew muay buffet dishes

friend bought 3pax lunch at gimtim at amk ave 4 on 9.5.2016. ^^

this was a follow-up of our last makan at toa payoh lor 8 food centre on 30.4.2016.

i have been to 2 other gimtim group restaurants & they were pretty good-

sweet potato porridge

sweet potato porridge

they have a S$13.80 nett teochew muay weekdays buffet lunch.

buffet turned out better than i expected. 🙂

setting & dishes were humble, but the taste was quite good.

braised chicken

braised chicken

chicken was good, tender & sauce tasty.

braised duck wings

braised duck wings

duck wings so so, can skip.

mui choy 梅菜

mui choy 梅菜

mui choy 梅菜 was good, not salty, nice flavour.

kiam chai咸菜

kiam chai咸菜

kiam chai咸菜 also good, not salty, & sweet.

egg plant

egg plant

egg plant boleh da…

chicken feet

chicken feet

chicken feet was good. friend went to get a second helping.

ter kar (pig trotters)

ter kar (pig trotters)

ter kar (pig trotters) nice gummy texture & tasty. people took most of it i managed to get some odds & ends.

tau kee

tau kee

tau kee average competent.

pork & cauliflower

pork & cauliflower

pork & cauliflower simple, ok.

tofu fungus chinese cabbage

tofu fungus chinese cabbage

egg tofu quite well done. with wood fungus & chinese cabbage, sweet.

braised pig heat meat & tofu

braised pig heat meat & tofu

strange they did not have kong bak. friend only picked up pig head meat, tofu & egg. they were good. 🙂

braised pig ears

braised pig ears

there was a refill, but only pig ears. good too. 🙂

ikan selar

ikan selar

the i think ikan selar? was good. people took the tails so only left heads.

i will try to cook this dish myself.

sides

sides

i enjoyed all these little sides – fermented beancurd, peanut ikan bilis, olive vegetable, haebeehiam & radish pickles.

all memory foods from childhood la….

pulut hitam

pulut hitam

had some fruit (papaya) + pulut hitam.

i don’t mind this place. can come back some time again with my sis.

c.h.e.f andy

++++++++++++++++++++++++

GIMTIM

Address : Blk 157, Ang Mo Kio Avenue 4 #01-546 Singapore 560157
Hotline : 6459 7766 (Reservation is needed on Saturday and Sunday)
Fax : 6458 0467
Email : amk157@gimtim.com.sg
Business Hour : Monday – Friday (Lunch 11.30am – 2.30pm / Dinner 6.00pm – 10.30pm)
Saturday, Sunday, Public Holiday (Lunch 11.00am – 2.30pm / Dinner 6.00pm – 10.30pm)

 

Great Fish Head Curry @ Curry Wok on 4Mar2016

S$62 4 dishes set meal for 3-4pax(2) = curry fish head, pig trotters, ngoh hiang & chap chai

S$62 4 dishes set meal for 3-4pax = curry fish head, pig trotters, ngoh hiang & chap chai

went with sis & bil to watch a movie monster hunt 捉妖记 on 4.3.2016. a friend joined the movie. i quite enjoyed it actually – effortless, relaxing. haha!

curry wok @ coronation road

curry wok @ coronation road

before the movie 3 of us went to have dinner at curry wok. friend was busy having dinner with his family.

curry wok @ coronation road

curry wok @ coronation road

i have not been here for very long as son is away no one to eat the pig trotters with me la.. 🙂

S$62 4 dishes set meal for 3-4pax(2) = curry fish head, pig trotters, ngoh hiang & chap chai

S$62 4 dishes set meal for 3-4pax(2) = curry fish head, pig trotters, ngoh hiang & chap chai

we ordered the S$62 set meal, with 4 dishes for 3-4pax. we computed the ala carte price would have been S$67 so just S$5 discount. well still a discount if you wanted the dishes, so ok la.

curry fish head

curry fish head

it came with curry fish head (angkoli), pig trotters, ngoh hiang & chap chai.

curry fish head

curry fish head

the fish head was yum yum, very good, drank up all the curry.

fish was fresh & sweet, quite enough meat for 3 of us.

i like this curry much better than that at sanpo food court, blk 431 clementi ave 3 (like for like). somehow that curry taste a bit off for me, not the one i had in mind whereas this one fits perfectly.

& i like this better than the assam fish head at dulukala peranakan restaurant at beauty world centre. that was a different style & assam not bad too but i prefer this chinese style fish head curry.

braised pig trotters

braised pig trotters

the braised pig trotters was something i missed, not taken for a long time.

braised pig trotters

braised pig trotters

it was still good, especially the gelatinous skin, but actually quite below my expectations.

braised pig trotters

braised pig trotters

the starchy sauce was so so for me, & the quite sinewy meat was below par for me thought the skin & gelatinous parts were good.

i think my own braised trotters much better than this in terms of both flavour & the texture of the meat, tender, with bite & not sinewy.

ngoh hiang

ngoh hiang

the ngoh hiang here was really good. crispy skin, & tasty fillings with some crunch. tops!

chap chai

chap chai

chap chai was good too. better than dulukala’s version of chap chai.

dinner for 3pax was S$70. i supposed ok but no particular good value.

i may still come back here for the curry fish head la, but no more the pig trotters.

c.h.e.f andy

Good Ice Kacang @ Sing Heng Dessert (& Bad Pig Trotters ) Mei Ling Market & Food Centre on 20Oct2015

ice kacang

ice kacang – S$1.40

we were at mei ling market & food centre & had the S$13 song fish head hk steamed 港蒸松鱼头 at hong man ji delights 鴻满记小吃.

& also pig trotters & pig liver & kidney soup (below).

i was looking around for ice kacang. the sing heng dessert stall was a bit hidden but i found it anyway. 🙂

ice kacang

ice kacang – S$1.40

at S$1.40 it’s probably the cheapest ice kacang in singapore. 🙂

the one i usually goes to is at adam road food centre. that is S$2, the usual price charged in most food centres.

i was thinking maybe they have a thing or 2 to learn from adam road when the lady  hardly added any evaporated milk. it’s like just a trickle whereas adam road pour like 20ml…lol.. onto the ice kacang.

surprisingly though, it was very good, even though i still prefer more evaporated milk. haha!

sing heng dessert

sing heng dessert

& that’s why i decided to record this. a good ice kacang.

pig trotters stall

pig trotters stall

to add to our song fish head hk steamed 港蒸松鱼头 lunch, we ordered pig liver & kidney soup & pig trotters from the stall selling them together with bakuteh & kueh chap. the stall proprietress is a vietnamese.

pig liver kidney soup

pig liver kidney soup – S$5

the soup was tasty, so maybe the bakuteh would be good. i won’t really want to try because the pig trotters was really bad & i lose confidence on the stall.

pig liver kidney soup

pig liver kidney soup – S$5

the pig liver & kidney were so so. i had much better ones….

pig trotters

pig trotters – S$5

the pig trotters i think was a disaster!

pig trotters

pig trotters – S$5

the braising sauce was tasteless. how could it be tasteless?

pig trotters

pig trotters – S$5

when i saw it, the colour & look were all wrong. maybe the taste & texture would be ok, but they were not, downright bad!

there was no gelatine texture & bite.

definitely a stall i will not try again.

c.h.e.f andy

Good Song Fish Head @ Hong Man Ji Delights 鴻满记小吃 Mei Ling Market & Food Centre on 20Oct2015

song fish head hk steamed 港蒸松鱼头

song fish head hk steamed 港蒸松鱼头

was with my sis & b-i-l this morning & originally we drove to alexandra village to take the song fish head. but even at 11am the carparks were completely full & many cars were waiting.

we turned back out at bukit merah & queensway to go to hong kong street chun kee 香港街珍记 at commonwealth crescent, but decided to drop in at mei ling market & food centre to try out the stalls on 20.10.2015.

hong man ji delights 鴻满记小吃

hong man ji delights 鴻满记小吃

since we wanted song fish head, we picked the zi char stall at the hawker centre, hong man ji delights 鴻满记小吃.

song fish head hk steamed 港蒸松鱼头

song fish head hk steamed 港蒸松鱼头

the song fish head hk steamed 港蒸松鱼头 was S$13. they also served the black bean sauce fish head but sis decided to take hong kong steamed. it would be S$18 at alexandra village & at hong kong street chun kee 香港街珍记 at commonwealth crescent.

song fish head hk steamed 港蒸松鱼头

song fish head hk steamed 港蒸松鱼头

the song fish head hk steamed 港蒸松鱼头 was good, as good as the established places, not sure if the fish head was smaller?

sitr-fry kailan

sitr-fry kailan S$6

stir-fry kailan was also very good, anyway better than i expected.

sitr-fry kailan

sitr-fry kailan

good wok hae, tasty! S$6 for a small portion.

sitr-fry kailan

sitr-fry kailan

this stall actually quite good food for the price. becos we wanted to try the pig trotters etc from another stall we did not order other dishes.

not sure i will come specially for the zi char.  but if i do, i don’t mind to try their other dishes. 🙂

c.h.e.f andy

Nice Interesting Lunch @ Nirai Kanai Okinawan Diner on 27Feb2015

pig's ear

pig’s ear

a friend arranged to buy 6pax lunch today 27.2.2015. not sure if he made a killing in the US market? haha! ^^

it’s an interesting place, narai kana okinawan diner at liang court.

he/we ordered many interesting dishes.

wasabi octopus

wasabi octopus

first was the pig’s ear ( i saw on couple of blog reviews), and the wasabi octopus.

both were good. ^^ small dishes, especially the pig’s ears. the octopus was interesting, very nice teture & flavours.

kakuni - okinawan braised belly pork

okinawan braised belly pork

kakuni - okinawan braised belly pork

okinawan braised belly pork

we had the okinawan braised belly pork (a famous okinawan dish) well reported by almost every blogger. it was good, but not much different from the kakuni i did. it was also a little on the sweet side, and by comparison, the steamed knuckles we had later was better! 🙂

deepfried small river shrimps

deepfried small river shrimps

the deepfried small river shrimps was nice.

bitter gourd

bitter gourd

bitter gourd was done well, no bitter taste. it was something quite easy to do at home though.

silk gourd with minced pork

silk gourd with minced pork

the silk gourd with minced was nice. i liked it, for me a better dish than the bitter gourd. our dentist friend split the dish for 6 servings. very well done indeed!^^

steamed pig trotters

steamed pig trotters

steamed pig trotters

steamed pig trotters

we had the steamed pig trotters. i liked the very good gelatine & bite texture, w/o too heavy overpowering sauce.

onsen egg

onsen egg

i had the onsen egg. nothing special here. i can make a 6mins runny yolk egg easily enough.^^

somen

somen

somen

somen

the somen was nice, with the usual tsuyu sauce.

seaweed dish

seaweed dish

okinawan style onigiri

okinawan style onigiri

okinawan style onigiri

okinawan style onigiri

deepfried seaweed

deepfried seaweed

we were basically full but did not mind trying out couple more dishes. so our friend ordered the onigiri, a triangular shaped rice balls okinawan style? the deep-fried seaweed, and another seaweed dish.

a very enjoyable lunch with great company.

c.h.e.f andy

Good Ter Kar (Pig Trotters) Lunch @ Han Jia East Coast Lagoon Food Village on 7Jan2015

ter kar (pig trotters)

ter kar (pig trotters)

i didn’t have great ter kar (pig trotters) the last time at han jia bakuteh & pork leg, east coast lagoon food village.

2 good friends took it upon themselves to convince me otherwise, so we had a 4pax lunch there on 7.1.2014. they felt that the trotters were overcooked & too soft at dinner time, and lunch time was the right time to try the trotters.

there was a short queue, my friend bought lunch & ordered 1 trotter each. there goes my 10km jog! ^^

was it good?

well, i couldn’t say it wasn’t. it was good,

but was it any special? i didn’t think it was. i think the ones at  ng ah sio bakutehsong fa bakuteh were just as good, and same for lao ah tee, rong cheng etc.

& the ones at 幸福潮州小食 pig trotter at whampoa market probably better in look & texture. the one i like most was at zion road hawker centre quite a while back, probably not there now.

one friend who generally has a better palate than i said it was very “pang”, and indeed it was. i put it down to personal taste. for pork trotters, i like it to be “kar kar” where the meat texture, the bite is gelatinous. this was indeed less soft than the last & overall pretty ok, but not near the perfect gelatinous texture i like. if anything i prefer my own braised pig trotters – the colour, texture & taste, and here.

anyway, it is a matter of personal preference. ^^

kidney liver souppig

kidney liver soup

kidney & liver soup was good, not special also.

taupok

taupok

taupok was average.

buay chai

buay chai

i didn’t like the buay chai much, prefer the chai buay at teochew muay stalls better.

ter kar (pig trotters)

ter kar (pig trotters)

cheng tng & soupsop jelly

cheng tng & soupsop jelly

soursop jelly

soursop jelly

the soursop jelly was great! ^^

overall it was a good lunch, good friends, cool weather, nice food. i always like ter kar though don’t eat that often, and 1 ter kar is a big large portion for 1pax.

c.h.e.f andy

Kueh Chap Homecooked Lunch for 10pax Friends on 17Sep2014

braised belly pork, pig ears & ter tau bak

braised belly pork, pig ears & ter tau bak

i have been applying the pot roast method using a crockpot (slow cooker) to produce very tender & moist & more gentle slow-braised meats. 🙂

i tried it very successfully on 蒜泥白肉, spicy garlic pork, and i used it once also to make a good braised belly pork, pig ears & ter tau bak (猪头肉).

for this 10pax lunch for my friends on 17.9.2014, i added braised pork trotters & also kampong chicken.

the gentle braising started with a cold crockpot on low & took about 4-5hrs to produce the very tender & still firm texture (“kar kar”) which i prefer over the more overcooked soft texture. i was able to reproduce the same tasty braising sauce. see the detail steps in the recipe here.

tau kua, tau pok, lor nerng

tau kua, tau pok, lor nerng

i used the braising sauce for the tau kua & lor nerng (braised egg) to infuse the flavours. i cheated for the tau pok & added water to dilute the braise as tau pok absorbs too much & i won’t have any sauce left for the “kueh chap”. 🙂

big intestines

big intestines

ter kar (pork trotters)

ter kar (pork trotters)

i braised the ter kar (pork trotters) separately by the same method, and took out some braising sauce to do the big intestines separately.

the big intestines from sheng shiong were already cleaned but i could not take the risk so i washed them thoroughly then rubbed with flour and salt & turned inside out. of course all the meats were scalded with boiling water to remove the scums before braising.

getting feedback from the friends –

  1. they all felt the dishes (belly pork, ear, pig head meat & trotter) were all quite ok comparable with good hawkers, both taste & texture.
  2. one mentioned that the intestines were good w/o the odour (even though it was still a strong tasting dish) and good texture.
  3. another didn’t think the intestine was as good as these were the thicker-walled tua terng tau (大肠头) whereas usually the ones outside were the thinner walled type. it’s just that on this day sheng shiong did not have the thinner walled type. 😦
  4. & of course they all noted as i did that i added the braising sauce to the trotters & big intestines but forgot to add to the 2 large plates of belly pork/ear/pig head meat & tua kua/tau pok/lor nerng. that would have enhanced the flavours. the braising sauce were used up after diluting for the “kueh chap” which i used hor fun to substitute as i could not get the flat sheet kueh chap. one thought the kueh chap sauce was a bit sweet though it was ok for me.
  5. one friend missed the “crunchy” birth intestines (生肠) i made last time. this time round sheng shiong did not have 生肠 so bought large intestines instead. not quite the same i guess. 🙂
  6. & i thought my pig trotters was almost the standard of 幸福潮州小食 pig trotter at whampoa, and much better than the han jia bakuteh pig trotters at east coast lagoon food village.
poached kampong chicken

poached kampong chicken

i was confident of my poached kampong chicken, which was tender, moist & sweet.

excellent crackling belly pork (shio bak)

excellent crackling belly pork (shio bak)

excellent crackling belly pork (shio bak)

excellent crackling belly pork (shio bak)

a friend brought 1kg of shi0 bak (roast belly pork). it was really good. just look at the crackling skin + the really nice meat layers colour. texture & taste was excellent. this motivated me to want to try again to do this difficult roast pork dish. 🙂

garlic brocoli

garlic brocoli

my helper did a garlic broccoli everyone liked it!

the lunch spread

the lunch spread

the lunch spread

the lunch spread

i experimented on a slow braised beef briskets & ribs with daikon (radish) & carrots but it was not good & we did not take photos. i will give it another try again, having thought about how i can do it differently & hopefully better. 🙂

tiramisu

tiramisu

tiramisu was a crowd favourite. one friend had 3 helpings and all enjoyed this light & very flavourful tiramisu recipe.

c.h.e.f andy

Fish Soup, Pig Trotters & Fish Maw Soup @ Whampoa Hawker Centre on 6Sep2014

幸福潮州小食 pig trotter

幸福潮州小食 pig trotter – S$5.50

went with sis & b-i-l to watch chinese operatic performance at nkf centre on 6.9.2014.

we went earlier at 6pm to have dinner at whampoa hawker centre. we all love hawker food! 🙂

幸福潮州小食

幸福潮州小食

there was the usual long queue for hoover rojak. the liang zhao ji 梁照记 duck rice stall was closed.

the next stall, 幸福潮州小食, seems to be popular with teochew pig trotter jelly (猪脚冻) & shark jelly (鲨鱼冻). i wanted more to eat the pig trotters and looking at the trotter jelly it didn’t look that great, so i ordered just the pig trotters & fish maw soup. think i will go back one day to try both the pig trotter jelly (猪脚冻) & shark jelly (鲨鱼冻).

幸福潮州小食 pig trotter

幸福潮州小食 pig trotter – $5.50

幸福潮州小食 fish maw soup

幸福潮州小食 fish maw soup – S$4

the pig trotters were very good. everything was right about this pig trotter – good gelatinous texture (in teochew we say “kar kar”), cooked just right, & tasty. just compared the above photo with that of the quite poor ones i had at the famous han jia bakuteh, pork leg at east coast lagoon food village on 4.7.2014.

the S$4 fish maw soup was a good deal, 3 fish maw, 2 fish balls, 2 pork balls, lots of minced pork & 2-3 think sliced pork. very good! 🙂

hoover fish porridge fish head soup

hoover fish porridge fish head soup

hoover fish porridge sliced fish soup

hoover fish porridge sliced fish soup

hoover fish porridge sliced fish soup

hoover fish porridge sliced fish soup

3pax dinner at whampoa market

3pax dinner at whampoa market

my sis came here to take her favourite fish soup at hoover fish porridge. she ordered 1 bowl of sliced fish soup & 1 bowl of fish head soup, S$12 including 2 bowls of rice. the sliced fish soup was sweeter & ok amount of fish. i usually like fish head but the quantity was quite small & not so much meat vs bones.

for me, i didn’t think much of this fish soup. it was ok but just like any fish soup. also fish soup not my favourite dish.

dinner for 3pax came to S$21.50, so about S$7pax, quite ok.

after dinner i saw 2 chinese herbal mutton soup stalls. i would want to try them next time.

i want to come back again! 🙂

c.h.e.f andy

Pre-Wimbledon Semi+World Cup France-Germany Dinner@East Coast Lagoon Food Village on 4Jul2014

bakchormee

bakchormee

went to a friend’s house for a marathon evening of 2 wimbledon semis – Federer vs Raonic & Djokovic vs Dimitrov aka baby Fed. 🙂

we took the pleasant stroll to east coast lagoon food village. the last we came was during roland garros on 8.6.2014. 🙂

bakchormee

bakchormee

braised pig trotters

braised pig trotters

braised pig trotters

braised pig trotters

this time we tried the supposedly famours pig trotters at han jia bakuteh & pork leg. i wanted bakchormee so i skipped the rice & just had the trotters. according to my friend, this stall was quite good except that it was less good in the evening as the trotters got to be too soft.

braised pig trotters, taupok, chai buay

braised pig trotters, taupok, chai buay

my bakchormee was ok but not of the standard of tai wah bakchormee, jalan tua kong lau lim at bedok simpangjalan tua kong meepok tar at 6th avenue etc.

my 2 other friends ordered also taupok, chai buay + peanuts & kidney, liver soup. all were ok except the pig trotters. partly because  we ordered the lean trotters, but this was way below the standard of any good trotters stall like ng ah sio bakuteh, song fa bakuteh etc.

i had tried several stalls here after 4 visits including laksa, orh luah, satay, beef noodles, bbq chicken & now the pig trotters. except for the bbq chicken wings & orh luah which were good, i have to say that this food centre is way below par c/w with say maxwell road hawker centre, amoy street hawker centre, hong lim hawker centre & bukit timah food centre.

after dinner we enjoyed the top drawer sound system & music, this time jason mraz, & the wimbledon semis & world cup quarterfinals between france & germany. we left about 2am, skipping the brazil-columbia game. 🙂

c.h.e.f andy

 

 

蒜泥白肉 Spicy Garlic Pork

#5 蒜泥白肉

蒜泥白肉

蒜泥白肉, a spicy garlic pork, is a common sichuan dish which i like but don’t take often.

it was 1 of the dishes i explored when planning a “fine” chinese menu for 11pax RI friends on 5.5.2014. 🙂

spicy garlic pork 蒜泥白肉

spicy garlic pork 蒜泥白肉

i also tried drunken chicken. it was ok but several friends though my chicken rice chicken白斩鸡(a much easier preparation) was better. i tried ter kar tan (teochew pig trotter jelly) but so far not very successful. the other which i have not yet try out is 镇江肴肉, a cured pig trotter terrine.

spicy garlic pork 蒜泥白肉

spicy garlic pork 蒜泥白肉

i already produced a very tender belly pork by brining in sugar & salt & then using the crockpot method – place the belly pork in a crockpot & add enough brine to cover completely, turn on crockpot to low & cook for about 4hrs (OR use a meat thermometer set at 76degC & off the crockpot when alarm sounds).

i felt that the key to a good 蒜泥白肉 is a good sauce. so i googled & picked what i thought would be a good sauce recipe for 蒜泥白肉.

#5 蒜泥白肉 sichuan spicy garlic pork belly

蒜泥白肉 sichuan spicy garlic pork belly

i added 1/3 cup light soy sauce (80ml), 2 tablespoon brown sugar, 1 cm sliced ginger, 1 cinnamon bark, 1 clove, 2 anise seeds, 1 teaspoon cumin to 1/2 cup stock (chicken or from the pork) to a pan on low fire. i then added 4 cloves chopped garlic, 2 chopped shallots & 2 tablespoon sichuan spicy chilli oil. i heat it for until fragrant (5mins or more). i checked the taste. it should be very mildly sweet, just slight spicy & quite fragrant/flavourful. sliced the belly pork thinly, lay out on a dish with sliced zucchini, & drizzle the sauce over the pork. serve. 🙂

the result was in the above photos. when i brought out at the 27pax dinner for RI friends on 28.5.2014, everyone liked it. so was the case for the 11pax family birthday dinner on 14.6.2014. 🙂

c.h.e.f andy

Ingredients:

  • 400g belly pork
  • small zucchini (sliced)

sauce

  • 1/3 cup light soy sauce (80ml)
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 cm sliced ginger
  • 1 cinnamon bark
  • 1 clove
  • 2 anise seeds
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 cup stock (chicken stock or from the pork)
  • 4 cloves chopped garlic
  • 2 chopped shallots
  • 2 tbsp sichuan spicy chilli oil

Directions:

  1. scald the belly pork in boiling water to remove scum. place in 600ml water (or enough to cover the pork fully) with 2 heap tbsp sugar & 1 heap tbsp salt & brine for 48hrs. placed the belly pork in a crockpot (cold) & add enough brine to cover completely, turn on crockpot to low for cook for about 4hrs (or use a meat thermometer set at 76degC & off the crockpot when alarm sounds).
  2. add 1/3 cup light soy sauce (80ml), 2 tbsp brown sugar, 1 cm sliced ginger, 1 cinnamon bark, 1 clove, 2 anise seeds, 1 teaspoon cumin to 1/2 cup stock (chicken or from the pork) to pan on low fire. add 4 cloves chopped garlic, 2 chopped shallots & 2 tbsp sichuan spicy chilli oil. heat until fragrant (5mins or more). check the taste. it should be very mildly sweet, just slight spicy & quite fragrant/flavourful.
  3. slice the belly pork thinly, lay out on a dish with sliced zucchini, & drizzle the sauce over the pork. serve.

 

Very Fulfilling RI Buddies 8pax Homegourmet Dinner on 13Feb2014

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4hr sous vide crispy skin duck breast

the sous vide crispy duck breast was one the dishes i was ambivalent & uncertain about. first, it was troublesome to buy a whole duck, cut out 2 duck breasts, and then think what to do with the rest. i usually made a good lor arh (braised duck) from the remaining pieces but it was not healthy to keep eating duck with all the fat. second, while i was quite confident the sous vide meat would turn up well, i was not confident of doing the crispy skin w/o overcooking the duck & was not entirely convinced that the crispy skin was not just much ado about nothing (same ambivalence i had when practicing crackling belly pork). did the skin add much to the experience? i guess it did but whether the result was deserving the effort?

anyway for this evening, it turned out that the sous vide duck breast & the striploin pot-roast, a method i did for the first time on striploin, were quite excellent! 🙂

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menu planning – i was looking for a change of menu for my RI buddies dinner from the usual miso cod & pan-fried wagyu as main courses. i did a good gordon ramsay crispy salmon so i knew i would do ok with garoupa fillet.  it was not convenient to practice the gordon ramsay pepper sauce nor the pot roast but i felt quite comfortable to do it for the first time for my friends. 🙂 the poor man’s buddha-jump-over-the-wall was also a new dish. i did it once & it was good. for the pasta, i thought to revisit my seafood pink sauce linguine (& i did a very good one recently) to replace my usual alio olio. 🙂

pan-grilled giant hokkaido scallops (some 2" diameter)

pan-grilled giant hokkaido scallops (some 2″ diameter)

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scallop. miso belly pork. pencil asparagus. grape tomato. carrot.

#1 got dinner started with a very good pan-seared giant hokkaido scallop & my usual 4hr miso belly pork. both were very good. this the first time i added cooked vegetables. the carrot sticks were done in the steam oven, very sweet & consistent. the pencil asparagus were pan-roasted after i did the scallops & miso belly pork.

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poor man’s buddha-jump-over-the-wall

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poor man’s buddha-jump-over-the-wall

#2  next was the poor man’s buddha-jump-over-the-wall. the pig trotters was done overnight (about 7hrs) together with dried scallops & thick dried mushrooms & 2 chicken drumsticks (skin removed) for stock in a crockpot on low. the pig trotters were removed & put in the fridge to preserve the nice gelatinous texture. 🙂 the limpets & sea cucumbers were added just before serving, together with cut pieces of pig trotters. the soup was quite perfect at the time i was about to serve, but i was worried it was not enough for 8pax, so i added a bit of chicken stock. it was still good but i felt the flavour was not as intense, and actually there was enough soup w/o diluting it. it was kind of guesstimate thing as cooking for 8pax & practicing it once for a smaller serving did have some variations. 🙂

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4hr sous vide crispy skin duck breast

#3 the duck breast turned up supremely good! was brined in sugar & salt for 2 days & cooked at 60degC in the oven for 4hrs. the skin was then scored & i put on a pan at medium fire for 5mins to render out the fat to create a thin crispy skin. an important addition was orange sauce (see recipe here). i reduced this substantially to produce a thick caramelised nicely citrous sweet sauce. it went really well with the duck which was super tender. 🙂

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seafood linguine in pink sauce (creamy tomatoes)

#4 next was the seafood linguine in pink sauce. all my friends thought it was very tasty, but another & i still preferred the alio olio style which i did very well every time. 🙂

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pan-grilled garoupa fillet in gordon ramsay pepper sauce

#5 then came the 2 main courses. first up was the pan-grilled garoupa fillet with gordon ramsay pepper sauce. my hand-held food blender was evidently not the right tools to produce the very smooth blended sauce in gordon ramsay’s pepper sauce video (a real beauty). the garoupa were marinated well so flavour was ok. the texture of the garoupa fillet (frozen pack) was not great. of course it was too much to compare with my usual miso cod (also frozen pack).

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striploin pot roast in crockpot low to 125degF (52degC)

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vegetable ratatouille

#6 the striploin pot roast was a beauty. see the nice maillard reaction brown ring in the photo. it was nicely seared all round before placing in a crockpot on low with the vegetable ratatouille to reach 125degF (52degC) – about 1.5hrs, then in a 55degC oven for another 1 hr.  it was a very nice medium rare, & medium at the ends. i was very pleased with this first crockpot roast on a striploin. my first was a chuck pot roast. it was good but this was lots better! 🙂

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chocolate lava cake, toasted almond ice cream & “huat kueh”

#7 the last course was my chocolate lava cake. i had done very many good lava cakes. this time i did the exact same recipe & timing (3m 40s in a 210degC oven on broiler setting). somehow it was overdone & there were not much lava. will need to reduce to 3m 30s next time. sigh! i really need to work on another dessert recipe.

it was a really enjoyable & fulfilling experience for me (1 of my good friends described as full-filling haha!). i really feel good about this! 🙂

c.h.e.f. andy

Feeling Excited – Doing a 8pax Dinner for My RI Buddies This Evening!

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doing a 8pax dinner for my RI buddies this evening – feeling excited! 🙂

for me, cooking is about planning & making it happen, and the process is quite fun.

i don’t have to start cooking until 1.30pm.

the soup for poor man’s buddha-jump-over-the-wall was done overnight. so i just need to add back the individual servings of pig trotters, limpets, sea cucumbers & mushrooms when serving the soup.

the miso belly pork & crispy skin sous vide duck breast will be in the oven at 60degC for 4hrs. during the 4hrs, i will prepare the chocolate lava cake (takes <1/2hr) and 4 sauces- orange sauce for the duck, gordon ramsay pepper sauce for the garoupa fillet, pink sauce (creamy tomato) for the seafood linguine & vegetable ratatouille for the striploin pot roast. each takes say 15 – 30minutes.

at 5.30pm, i will start my striploin pot roast (700g) with ratatouille in the crockpot on low & should get to 125degF (52degC) in 1 hr, & i can place it in a covered oven dish in a 55degC oven for another 1.5hrs, probably serves it at 8pm.

when the friends are here at 7pm, i will do the pan-charring for the scallops & then miso belly pork (which were marinated in miso for 3 days & “sous vide” at 60degC for 4hrs in the oven, & then pan-roast the pencil asparagus.

after that i will serve the soup, and then do the cold pan method to try to get the crispy skin “sous vide” duck breast (brined for 2 days & also 4hrs at 60degC in oven). as i told my friends the medium rare duck breast is ok, but i unsure of the crispy skin (both texture & taste) & will probably not do this dish much in future if it doesn’t work well (just like the crackling pork belly – not worth doing if cannot get it right).

the seafood linguine in pink sauce is straight forward just tossing, with both pasta & the prawns & squid already prepared.

for the garoupa fillet, i had a good marinade (2days) so it should be quite nice pan-grilled. i am doing the gordon ramsay pepper sauce for first time today, but the video sure looks really exciting. 🙂

for the striploin pot roast, i have done this before on chuck pot roast (a cheaper cut) but this the first time i am trying it on striploin. never really know how it will turn out especially i am varying the temperature a bit to make rare instead of medium rare, but that’s the fun & challenge of the unknown. 🙂

my chocolate lava cake is quite standard fare, so should be ok though occasionally the lava part still doesn’t work out well as the timing is too short & any slight variation in oven temperature & timing will affect the result.

looking forward to a fun evening. we are going to share our secondary school photo albums too…haha. 🙂

c.h.e.f andy

(Poor Man’s) Buddha Jump Over The Wall

poor man's buddha jump over the wall

poor man’s buddha jump over the wall

my daughter’s friend’s father is a chef. he made a shorthand version of buddha jump over the wall using simple ingredients & my daughter brought home last week. it was very good & my wife & i enjoyed very much. 🙂

my wife is leaving for UK tomorrow & my daughter’s friend came for dinner, so i thought i would try recreating the dish. 🙂

(P.S. subsequently i served this dish for my RI friends on 5.5.2014 & for my brother & sister birthday on 14.6.2014 and it was a really excellent dish that everyone liked).

the ingredients that were used were dried scallops, pig trotters, chicken, mushroom & small abalones. so i went to sheng shiong last evening & bought 1 chicken, a whole pig trotter. i did not want to waste good abalones (not sure how the soup would turn up) & there was not enough time for me to prepare dried abalones i had at home (takes couple days to slow braise in brown sauce) so i bought a can of cheap limpets for S$9.30.

poor man's buddha jump over the wall

poor man’s buddha jump over the wall

poor man's buddha jump over the wall

poor man’s buddha jump over the wall

poor man's buddha jump over the wall

poor man’s buddha jump over the wall

poor man's buddha jump over the wall

poor man’s buddha jump over the wall

i added boiling water to some dried mushrooms & 2 dried scallops & soaked for several hours to soften. i used about 2/3 of the pig trotters & added the remaining boiling water to remove the scums, after which i cleaned thoroughly in slow running cold water.

i cleaned & used 1/2 chicken & quartered it. then i placed the 2 chicken quarters & pig trotters (4 large pieces) in a crockpot & added the dried scallops, mushrooms & also the water they were soaked in , throwing away the residue. i open the can of limpets & tried a piece. the brined solution tasted quite good so i emptied the whole can into the crockpot, and added 1 teaspoon of salt. i added some water to about 80% full.

i then turned on the crockpot to low & left overnight till next morning (about 7hrs). next morning i removed the pig trotters (& chicken) & limpets so they were not over-boiled. this was very important for the pig trotters to keep the tasty & still bouncy slightly gelatinous texture. no difference for the chicken though, 7hrs even at low was too long.

i kept the crockpot at high for another 4hrs to get the most flavour from the dried scallops & to reduce the soup a little for more intense flavours. then i let it cooled down & placed in the fridge.

when it was time to serve, i took out the soup & removed the layer of oil. i then boiled the soup & added back the pig trotters & chicken & limpets & then served. 🙂

c.h.e.f andy

Ingredients:

  • 2 chicken quarters
  • 400g pig trotters
  • 6 to 10 pieces of small abalones (dried & braised or canned or a cheap substitute like limpets)
  • 2 dried scallops
  • 6 to 10 pieces dried mushrooms

Directions:

  1. add boiling water to some dried mushrooms & 2 dried scallops & soak for several hours to soften. add the remaining boiling water to pig trotters to remove scums, then clean thoroughly in slow running cold water. clean & cut out 2 chicken quarters. place the 2 chicken quarters & pig trotters (4 large pieces) in a crockpot & add the dried scallops, mushrooms & also the water they were soaked in, throwing away the residue. add some water & 1 teaspoon of salt. open a can of small abalones (or limpets) & empty contents into the crockpot.
  2. turn on crockpot to low & leave overnight till next morning (about 7hrs). next morning remove the pig trotters (& chicken) & limpets so they are not over-boiled. keep the crockpot at high for another 4hrs to get the most flavour from the dried scallops & to reduce the soup a little for more intense flavours (this to taste). let the soup cool down & place in the fridge.
  3. when it is time to serve, take out the soup & removed the layer of oil. boil the soup & add back the pig trotters & chicken & limpets & then serve.

Great Value 20pax Dinner @ Shin Yeh on 22Jan2014

咸水鸡 - similar to drunken chicken

咸水鸡 – similar to drunken chicken

organiser of RI friends’ dinner this month wanted to do it at a taiwanese porridge place & chose shin yeh,a tunglok restaurant. this dinner get-together was the most successful by far – we had initially 22pax, 2 could not attend last minute, still we had 20pax on 2 tables on 22.1.2014.

i had the amex palate discounts – 20% for 5-20pax. the restaurant called & i spoke with the manager who initially said we could not get discounts as we were 22pax. i gently told her it didn’t make sense – the worse case would be that we had our 20% discount for 20pax & no discounts for 2pax – & perhaps we should take our business elsewhere. the manager was sensible enough to say she would split the bill for us but that this was an exception. whatever! its a competitive world out there & business was not that great that evening. in any case as we finally settled as 20pax, no rules were broken!

i went earlier with the organiser to order ala carte from the menu (there was no discount for set menus & as always when festivity is near – CNY – set menus were very ex & often offer poor value).

we usually avoid appetiser & tea as they added heftily to the bill. in this case though tea was S$12 for the table (seemed like same S$12 for another number of diners on a table) so it was just S$1.20pax & very reasonable. we could have done without the S$5 appetisers which were just bah kua but anyway we reduced to 2 a table so just S$10 for 10pax. ok lah… 🙂

sweet & sour soon hock

sweet & sour soon hock S$32×2

pineapple prawns S$24

pineapple prawns

we picked 10 dishes.

#1 咸水鸡 – a cold dish similar to drunken chicken, was good. meat was sweet & good shaoxing wine flavour.

#2 we decided to take the staff’s recommendation & ordered 2 sweet & sour soon hock for each table. it was cheap compared with live fish, and the preparation made it quite tasty dish.

$3 another staff recommendation was the prawn with pineapple. this was good too. the prawn preparation was like a wasabi or salted egg prawn, lightly deep-fried. the pineapple added zest to the dish. 🙂 the staff suggested that this dish was more unique than taking live prawns.

三杯中卷 - 3 cup squid

三杯中卷 - 3 cup squid S$20

roast chicken S$36

roast chicken S$36

oyster egg

oyster egg S$16

pig trotters with squid & prawns

元蹄 pig trotters with squid & prawns S$28

#4 the 三杯中卷 (squid) was good too. 三杯 (3-cup) is a common preparation in taiwan & hakka dishes = 1 cup soy sauce, 1 cup cooking wine, 1 cup sesame oil. & since we already had a cold chicken dish & another whole roast chicken, we picked squid instead.

#5 the whole roast chicken with five-spice salt dip was tasty enough with crispy skin. it was kind of small though.

#6 the oyster egg was ok average dish.

#7 the 元蹄 pork trotter with prawns & squid was good – great taste & texture, uncommon to have prawns & squid in the preparation but an welcome addition.

braised tofu with minced pork

braised tofu with minced pork S$28

some mushrooms dish

some mushrooms dish S$24

mustard green with dried scallops

mustard green with dried scallops

complimentary mochi

complimentary mochi

we ordered 1 tofu & 2 vegetable dishes.

#8 the braised tofu with minced pork was good.

#9 the mushroom dish was quite unique though the price was to me unattractive, S$24 for medium portion c/w S$32 for the roast chicken.

#10 mustard green with dried scallop was small but always tasty dish with the dried scallops (瑶柱)

the restaurant provided a free mua chee (mochi) dessert. we were quite full already so did not add any dessert orders.

food was competent, quite good really. the bill after 20% discounts came to S$594nett for 20pax or S$30pax, so it was really great value. the service staff were great – responsive, polite & helpful. shin yeh though can be quite expensive (e.g. the soup of the day was S$10pax so it really depends on the food & portions you order). we were able to order fish, prawns, chicken & pork trotters that were substantial & not costly, so we had a great meal, enjoyable evening get-together at very reasonable cost. 🙂

c.h.e.f andy