Monday, 30 April 2007

My favourite!

Lemon chicken is proabably my favourite chinese dish in the whole wide world.

There's a place called "singgah selalu" (i know... what a name!) back home where they have the best lemon chicken in Johor Bahru. my good friend yoyo and i'd definitely order it everytime we're there.

If not for us being here, and far from "singgah selalu", i'd never know how simple to make this dish.

My first attempt to it failed. it was very sour and bitter, i put way too much lemon in it. all it takes is just one whole lemon, and the trick to it is to add a little chicken stock.

Anyway, we had this couple of days back. no more ready made sauces! hoera!


2 tbs cooking oil
2 cloves garlic
1 whole lemon or 1 1/2 depending on the size
1/2 Maggi chicken stock
3 tbs white sugar
1 1/2 tbs cornflour added with water
3-4 drops of sesame oil
a dash of salt (optional)
a dash of white pepper

1. Heat oil in pan
2. Fry garlic on medium heat (careful not to burn them)
3. Add lemon juice and water
4. Add chicken stock and stir well
5. Add sugar and a dash of white pepper/salt
6. Add sesame oil
7. Bring them to boil and later thicken the sauce with cornflour

Tuesday, 24 April 2007

Our Wedding Favors

To those who didnt know, prior moving to the netherlands, i had a tiny little gift business. and one thing nice about being in this line is you get to source a lot of things directly from the supplier. you have connections and you get discounts! ;) especially for yourself, for your wedding!

I promised a friend who's getting married end of the year, nurul, to share my ideas and what i did for my wedding favors.

Nikah Wedding Favors

I bought the stuff seperately, beforehand -the box, the ribbons, the flowers (which are in petal form therefore you'd have to make the buds and petals yourself), the tags.. slowly saving it bit by bit. and its amazing how everything came together at the perfect time!

And as for the filling, i really must thank a.rubina t for making it special. our own. its fruit cake, topped with fondont (is that the right spelling?) with our initials. we didnt actually plan for this, but it turned out nice, lovely, simple and different. just like i wanted. personalized.

Reception Wedding Favors

I had them ordered by my gift supplier 5 months before our wedding reception. they come in 10 different colours but i choose only 5 for my wedding. one of which is this lime green. the possiblities are endless with these types of baskets/bags. i didnt want to make it look 'the same' or 'kampung' so we (my mum and i) decided to go with various flowers to make them stand out (to us at least). we had magnolias, lavenders (no pictures, sorry, they're in my pc back home).

We gave them only to the ladies, and the men got a simple one (as they dont appreciate all these!)

I absolutely enjoyed sourcing them, making them and giving them! hope now i'll enjoy sharing them as well.

Monday, 23 April 2007


We are very fortunate to have found a good asian supermarket here, where we live. the asian supermarket or as they call it here, "toko" carries a lot of our local ingredients, thats why i am very tempted to try new dishes!

Our sundays are normally spent at home. my husband would either finish up with the house - drilling, screwing, hammering, fixing whilst i take care of our son, OR i cook/bake and he takes care of aidan.

He took care of aidan last sunday so that i could get a little bit of "me" time cooking. what an ideal sunday!

We miss having chinese food back home. we simply LOVE them. over here, we have quite a fair bit of them too, most are called "WOK" but they taste rather blend. since i had all sunday, i decided to take my time in doing this dish. something simple.

This was what we had - WAN TAN. it is time consuming making these, but we simply cant get enough of it! I was taught by a very dear and good friend of mine, awa how to make them. (really miss you wa, and you do them better than i do!)

I made a chicken and dried mushroom filling for them, marinated with sesseme oil, oyster sauce, salt and a pinch of white pepper. of course you can have prawn filling as well, as you wish.

One good thing about wan tans is you can either fry them or simply put them in soups. we chose to have ours fried, thus why we're 'expanding'!

Dip them in sweet chili sauce and there you have it! lekker! heel lekker!!

Everyone can do it!

I'm begining to miss home now...

Wednesday, 18 April 2007

'Apium graveolens' = Bleekselderij = Celery

Most people dont really fancy this vegetable. i didnt at first. but then i grew to like it when i first went to Chilli's and they served it raw with their ever so yummy buffullo wings. i then tried it with their dip. quite frankly, i liked the dip better!

We make sure we'd eat more greens. we'd rather pay slightly more for it and get it fresh.

Now, instead of putting celerys in soups, pies, or having them raw, i know how to cook them on its own (*where have i been all these while?!*) my husband remembered eating something like this at some chinese kedai makan (eating place) back home in KL. and one day he taught me what to chuck into this dish. i cant believe how simple it is, and how nice it tastes! try it!



Celery (use only the green part) - chopped
Garlic - sliced
Cashew Nuts
Oyster Sauce
A tad of chicken stok
Cooking Oil


1. Heat wok with oil and add garlic
2. Add in nuts till its golden brown (dont burn it)
3. Make sure wok is hot, then add in celery
4. Quickly add a tablesppon of Oyster Sauce and stir well
5. Add chicken stock
6. Add cornflour to thicken the gravy
7. Salt if required

(As usual, i really dont have the right measurements, but these are the key ingredients! you simply cant go wrong!)

Tuesday, 17 April 2007

An Overdue Craving

Eversince i was pregnant with Aidan, i craved for Ayam Percik (Spicy Barbequed Chicken). living out of your home country when pregnant, i didnt really get to enjoy my craving period! i just make do with what i had, and what holland's got to offer (as well as brussels!).

Now 7 months after having my son, and pretty much settled in and having a routine of our own, i manage to dig up some of mum's old recipes which she had brought while visiting us last year and found a piece of paper with a header - "AYAM PERCIK".

My husband's been telling me, "stop cooking! stop trying out new dishes, i'm getting wider!" but i cant help it! i just had to try this one out.

So last Sunday, whilst my son was in a good mood playing with his toys, and my husband out in the garden, i decided to embark on my mission. i prepared the ingredients earlier, when both boys were out. honestly, it didnt take long to cook! and i thought it was one of the leceh/most difficult malaysian dish!

Since mum's recipe's an old one, i just followed the key ingredients and did some minor changes.

AYAM PERCIK (Spicy Barbequed Chicken)

3-4 chicken legs (skinless, bone-in)
cooking oil
about 2 tbs tamarind juice
4 lemon grass stalks, bruised (as jamie says it "whack" em up)
1 cup thick coconut mix
about 1 tbs sugar
salt to taste

3 whole red onions (blend)
2 shallots
5 garlic (blend)
1 inch fresh ginger (blend)
1 stalk of lemon grass (blend)
2 candlenuts (kemiri) (blend)
1 tsp turmeric powder
6-7 dried chillis (washed first, boiled and then blend)
a dash of salt and sugar

1. Blend marinade well

2. Add to chicken and marinade for at least 1/2 hour.

3. Heat oil and fry the access marinate until its smells bloody nice

4. Add coconut milk, tamarind juice, sugar, salt and simmer on a medium heat for 5 mins

5. Add the chicken until it's half cooked

6. BBQ chicken in the oven (grill or turbo grill), leaving the coconut gravy in the pan to thicken on a medium heat

7. Turn the chicken occationally wlist adding more gravy on the chicken.

Serve with warm steamed rice!

LEKKER!!sedap!) - jadi la for a first timer, and being away from home. ;)

note: to those who are not familiar with this dish, it hails from the north eastern state of malaysia called kelantan. ayam percik is just one of my favourite kelantan dishes! will try to learn more!

Monday, 16 April 2007


We eat out quite often last year, (when we didnt have our house yet), and we always turn to kebabs as there's quite a few halal kebab places here.

Now that i have my own kitchen, i'd thought i'd make our own!

The best bread for them i reckon is the turkish bread. they come in all types of shapes and sizes, but tastes the same. the fresher, the better but dont worry, if you cant get any turkish bread, pitta or baguette will do just fine.

It will be a nice sunday brunch or a snack you'd have outside in your garden, enjoying the spring/summer sun!

Much of my dishes are basically an invention of my own, tasting it along the way. therefore i dont have the precise measurements. so here are just the key ingredients. you cant go wrong with it!

Easy Peezy!!


Beef - cut in strips
Onions (lots of em!) - sliced
Capsicums - green and red, diced
Tomatoes - diced
Garlic Powder (a dash)
Garam Masala (start with a tablespoon full, and adjust it to your tastebuds)
Curry Powder (half of the amount of Garam Masala)
Cooking Oil

1. Saute onions in pan with oil.
2. Add in beef and stir for 4 mins until beef is tender
3. Add garlic powder, garam masala and curry powder and stir
4. Add a little bit of water so that it will be slightly moist
5. Add in the diced green and red peppers and tomatoes
6. Grill it in the oven for 15 mins at 180c

We like ours with garlic mayonaise and chilli sauce!

Sunday, 15 April 2007

Oranje! Oranje!!

We had plenty of sun last weekend, lots were out of their homes and in their gardens.

I could hear the neighbours were in their garden so i decided to bake something for noe and lin, our neighbour's daughters. we had a couple of oranges and so i decided to make an orange cake.

Lately, i'm really into cupcakes! mabuk! seriously mabuk with them! i'd bake almost every cake in those cupcakes! its just so easy and simple and cooks faster than if i were to put them in a baking tin.

Well anyway, here are the results.

Just in case you might want to try it, or in the mood for baking, here's the recipe.


7oz sugar
8oz self rising flour
8oz butter
5 eggs - seperate them
1tsp vanilla essence
1tsp baking powder
1tsp orange essence
2 orange rind
1 1/2 orange juice (depending on how sweet your oranges are, you can reduce it to 1 whole orange juice)

1. cream sugar and butter
2. whisk egg white
3. add egg yolk one at a time
4. fold into cream mixture
5. fold in flour a little at a time, alternately with juice
6. add in orange rind and mix them well

Wednesday, 11 April 2007

A Grilled Cheesecake?!

Yes, i know i've promised some to email the recipe for my baked cheesecake i did last winter. (read it here) i'm sorry for the delay (by one season! hehe).

The reason being, the first time i did it, it turned out good, surprisingly! the second time round, it.. well.. sort of went.. err.. lets just say it didnt turn out like a cheesecake (altho the taste was there). no point putting a picture in here.

Honestly, i dont know what went wrong. the only thing i noticed was the first time i did it, i accidently put the oven on grill (betul!!! i swear!), and the second time, i put it on bake. am i suppose to grill a cheesecake?!

I am still discovering my oven, so bear with me!

Anyway guys, it tastes and will look really really good, if you dare to try it on grill! if you happen to try this out, do let me know how it turns out k?

Good luck!


The base
250g Digestive biscuits/ Sweet Biscuits
125g Butter, melted

The filling
500g Cream Cheese (phillidelphia's good) at room temp
165g castor sugar
2tsp vanilla essence
1 lemon rind, grated, juiced
4 eggs, seperated
125ml cream

1. Preheat the oven to 180°C. Brush a 20cm springform pan with melted butter.

2. To make the base, crush biscuits with hand or use a food processor until fine. Add butter and process until well combined. Transfer to the pan and use the back of a spoon or hand to spread evenly over the base. Place in the fridge until required.

3. To make the filling, beat the cream cheese, sugar and vanilla essence in a medium bowl until the mixture is creamy. Add the lemon rind, lemon juice, egg yolks and cream. Beat until well combined and the mixture is light and fluffy.

4. Use clean electric beaters or a balloon whisk to whisk the egg whites in a medium bowl until peaks form. Add to the cream cheese mixture and use a large metal spoon to fold until just combined.

5. Pour the mixture into the prepared pan. Bake in preheated oven for 40 minutes, or until just set in the centre. Remove from the oven to cool completely.

6. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and place in the fridge overnight to firm.

7. Add any filling or simply dust with icing sugar.

Smakelijk Eten (That's enjoy your food in dutch!)