Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Chicken Tikka


Enjoying Chicken Tikka or Tandoori Chicken served with Naan, takes me back to my 'exercise' days with my besties ~ Melinda, Steph, Judith and Shirley.

Once a week, we'd organised our 'Ladies' Night'... we'd meet up at Judith's place in the evening... went for our brisk walking... about 5 rounds around the block... a good 45 minutes walk... burnt out 'excess baggage', worked out buckets of sweat... smug

We enjoyed the walk... each other company... it was fun and we did all the exercise in the name of 'Keeping Healthy' and being 'Healthy' together... 

but then...

After the exercise

we adjourned to the nearby 'Sri Neela' Indian restaurant or Mamak Stall Indian street hawker... only to gain whatever we burnt off... during our walk...hee hee
  
We'd order our Garlic Naan, Tandoori Chicken, Tosai, Iced Lemon Tea... and so forth... and we'd sat there chit-chatting... catching up on our daily life and kids' progress... D and E are besties with Steph's and Melinda's children since the age of 1 plus...

I missed our 'Ladies Night out' in Taman Desa.... and I missed you ladies....

Chicken Tikka on BBQ~ I am so chuffed that I managed to capture the roaring Flame...
Recipe (adapted from Taste of India)
Chicken Tikka
1 kg chicken thighs - cut into cubes
2 tablespoon  ground ginger
1 teaspoon  smoked paprika
2 tablesppoon garam masala
3 tablespoon lemon juice
4 garlic cloves - finely chopped
1 cup of fresh coriander leaves - chopped
200ml plain yoghurt
lemon wedges
few drops of red food colouring.
salt
Minty Yoghurt Sauce
200ml plain yoghurt
1/2 cup finely chopped mint.
  1. Place cut up chicken, yoghurt and spices into a bowl. Mix well. Season with salt. Cover and marinade overnight in the fridge.
  2. Thread the marinated chicken into metal skewers.
  3. Place on BBQ grill and BBQ until the chicken is cooked.
  4. Mix finely chopped mint and yoghurt and season with some salt 
  5. Serve Chicken Tikka with Naan, lemon wedge and Mint yoghurt.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Naan Bread


First and foremost.... my million 'thank you's for voting and supporting me on Babble.com. When I first discovered that I was nominated ... which was 2 weeks ago... From My Lemony Kitchen was at no 300plus... currently as I am typing away... I am at no 94... unbelievable!!! I made it to top 100... thank you... thank you... thank you...
Dont just stop yet... keep your vote coming by clicking here... hugs and kiss from me..
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Its been a long while since we last had Naan... and my first attempt in making homemade Naan was a complete disaster...
After 5 long years, I decided to give it another try ... because... E wanted to have Naan with Chicken Tikka (another post coming...) as her belated birthday treat.

H and I came across this recipe from The Taste of India cookbook.
We had fun making Naan. And at the same time, we wanted to carry out some experiments... to find out the best way to achieve the Best homemade Naan ever... that worked well with our appliances... and of course our palate...tongue 

First ~ we experimented with the dough... made 2 batches within the span of 2 weeks... First batch was hand-kneaded and the second was by my 'old and trusty' Kenwood.
We prefer the hand-kneaded Naan ~ it is softer in texture in comparisons to the machine-kneaded Naan.. or could it be I over-mixed???

Second ~ we experimented with the cooking method ~ we baked a few, in the kitchen oven at the given temperature... how I wish I had Tandoor oven.. day dreaming, and the rest, we cooked on the BBQ hot plate. 
Result~ all of us prefer the later... Naan is soft, has some texture and 'meaty'. The oven baked Naan came out... all puffed up (just like Puri ~ Indian deep fried bread) and dry.

The 1st photo is the oven-baked Naan and the last photo is the BBQ hot plate version... Can you spot the difference?

Here... I am giving you both methods... of either baked in the oven or using BBQ hotplate...
the choice is yours winking

The dough has doubled in size.... after few hours.. hand-knead dough.

Turned the dough onto a lightly floured surface

Divide into 10 smaller balls...

 ... this is not authentic way of stretching the Naan... but it is less messy 

The soft and 'meaty' Naan... using BBQ hot plate.

Recipe (yield 10 pieces)
500g flour
250 ml milk
7g dried yeast
2 teaspoon kalonji
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 egg lightly beaten
2 tablespoon oil
185ml thick yoghurt
  1. Sift the flour and the baking powder into a mixing bowl.
  2. Add in yeast, kalonji and salt.
  3. In a jug, add in lightly beaten egg, oil and yoghurt.
  4. Make a hole in the middle of the flour mix, pour in about 200 ml of milk and the egg-yoghurt mixture.
  5. Knead into a soft pliable dough. If the dough seems on the 'drier' side... add the remaining milk.
  6. Knead for 5 minutes on lightly floured surface.
  7. Keep the dough covered in an oiled mixing bowl.
  8. Leave it to rest until the dough doubled in size.
Cooking Method
Method 1 ~ oven
  1. Preheat the oven to 250C.
  2. Place a roasting pan with half-filled water underneath the rack. divide the dough into 10 portions.
  3. Spread the dough into a 'pizza' like thickness.
  4. Place the stretched Naan on a lightly greased tray and bake for 7 minutes, then turn the Naan over and cook for another 5 minutes.
Method 2 ~ BBQ
  1. Divide into 10 portions.
  2. Stretched the dough. 
  3. Brush the top of the Naan with oil.
  4. Place on hot BBQ plate.
  5. Close the BBQ lid,and cook the for 3 minutes, repeat with the other side.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Asparagus with Hollandaise Sauce


It feels great... to know that someone out there... enjoy reading my post...  to know that my 'virtual kitchen' has inspired someone to try out some of the recipes posted...
With all the comments I received... taking in every word... never fail to put a smile on my face... The feeling is indescribable...happy  ....

I love... cooking and trying out recipes, taking photos... although, most of my recipes aren't from famous chefs or best-seller cookbooks... plus I have yet to learn the rope of food-photography ... nevertheless ~I enjoy what I am doing...

Why am I being so emotional on this cold...gloomy Tuesday morning?.. well the reason is this....

I, "From My Lemony Kitchen"  is on the list ~ Food Mom Blog 2011applause organised by Babble.com. (Click the logo as above on the sidebar to take you directly to the voting page)
(I am currently on page 3 no 123) 

I still have a long way to go... to be in the top 100 ...  with every little nudge ie your vote, will get me there eventually... 
Please vote for "From My Lemony Kitchen" ... I will update the sidebar to indicate 'how well' I am faring in the list....
and I 'thank you' for your vote, love and support...big hug ....


Recipe (for 2)
2 bunches of asparagus
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vinegar
Hollandaise Sauce
50g butter
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 egg yolk - lightly beaten
1/4 cup cream
1/2 teaspoon mustard
1/4 teaspoon salt
Asparagus
  1. Clean and cut-away the harden end of the spears.
  2. Microwave on HIGH for 2-3 minutes.
  3. Check... and if the asparagus is not quite done, microwave again on HIGH for another 2 minutes.
Hollandaise sauce
  1. Using a double boiler method, melt butter.
  2. Add lemon juice, yolk and cream.
  3. Stir until the mixture thicken.
  4. Remove from heat, stir in salt and mustard.
  5. Keep on whisking until the mixture is smooth.
  6. Cover with cling film.
  7. Leave it to cool.
Poaching egg
  1. Fill about 3 inches high of water in a saucepan. Bring to boil.
  2. Add in vinegar.
  3. Crack the egg in a bowl. Gently pour the egg into the rapid boiling water.
  4. Leave it for 2-3 minutes for a soft yolk.
  5. Dish the egg out with slotted spoon onto kitchen towel.

Drizzle hollandaise sauce over asparagus and poached egg. Season with salt and pepper.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Puah Kiam Ti Chang/ Nyonya Glutinous Rice Dumplings


nyonya-glutinous-rice-dumplings

We forgotten all about Dragon Boat Festival..until E asked her dad ...Click.here to know and read more about the Dragon Boat Festival and rice dumplings. 
E~"Dad, is today the Dragon Boat Festival?"
H~'Ermmm...'
E~"My friend who is doing her class assigment on China... said today is the Dragon Boat Festival"
H~ 'then it must be..'  isn't it obvious that he was clueless...winking
Then I chipped in ~ "isn't it time to make the Chang? Rice dumplings?"
We were a week late to feast on the dumplings... better late than missed out altogether, right?


We opt to make the Nyonya dumplings... It was our first attempt in making the dumplings, be it Nyonya or traditional dumplings...
Why Nyonya? Well... We have tasted the traditional dumplings when my Mom-in-law used to make them when she was still around... bless her soul.praying
There are vast differences between Nyonya dumplings and Traditional dumplings... from the glutinous rice preparation, colour and the filling... Note~ Authentic Nyonya Dumplings uses pork belly... but I am using chicken instead.

Good wrapping makes the dumplings... if I may say so... Both of us were 'beginners' in wrapping...
H was 'fussy', he wanted the dumplings to have that '3 triangles'... I tried wrapping once, twice  ... then I gave up and let him do all the work...
First, I couldn't get my dumplings to have that characteristic, secondly... I dont know how to tie them up!! oh boy...its much easier to wrap Northern ketupat/ dumplings...*sigh*

H lamented ~ he should have learned the wrapping technique from his mom when she was still around..sigh
Well... my dear~ you did an excellent job in wrapping all the dumplings and we did an excellent job in EATING!!!big grin

There are 4 parts to the recipe ~ Prepare the filling, prepare and steam the glutinous rice, wrap and steam again....please follow through the recipe... especially the 'Wrapping' on You Tube at the end  ~ that is the crucial part of the dumplings....
This post will also be sent over to Suresh Chong of 3 Hungry Tummies for the Malaysian Muhibbah Monday.

Recipe (adapted from Nonya Flavours)
Duo-coloured Glutinous Rice
500g glutinous rice flour
2 teaspoon blue colouring (or pea flower extract)
250ml coconut cream
salt
water
Filling
1 tablespoon peppercorn- grounded
4 teaspoon coriander seeds - grounded
4 cloves of garlic - chopped
300g chicken thigh - cut into small cubes
100g candied winter melon - chopped
100g peanuts - roasted and pounded
salt to taste
Bamboo leaves and bamboo strings -soaked overnight
pandan leaves- cut into 3 inches strips

Preparing the Filling:
  1. Heat up the wok and saute the spices with garlic until fragrant.
  2. Add chicken and stir until chicken is cooked.
  3. Season with salt.
  4. Add in chopped up candied wintermelon, continue to stir for few minutes.
  5. Take off the heat and put aside
  6. Add chopped peanuts when the mixture has cooled down.
Preparing Glutinous Rice
  1. Wash and divide into 150g and 350g.
  2. Soak both separately overnight. Add blue colouring or extract from pea flower (bunga telang) into the 150g glutinous rice
  3. Prepare steamer.
  4. line the steamer with muslin cloth and add the rice
  5. Steam for 50-60 minutes or until cooked.
  6. Stir in coconut cream
  7. steam for further 10 minutes.


To wrap... refer to the 'You Tube' by Globetrotter Diaries below :


Note ~ with Nyonya Dumplings, follow in this order
  1. 1 tablespoon of white glutinous Rice
  2. 1 tablespoon of 'Blue' rice,
  3. 1 tablespoon of Filling ,
  4. 1 tablespoon of white rice, press them gently,
  5. place a slice of pandan leaf 
  6. wrap as per video above
  7. Steam for 20-30 minutes

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Apple, Salmon and Capers

appetizers

Anyone had a good recollection of their younger days? What we used to play during our pre-school... kindy age?
The 'Dark' ages before sophisticated computer games exist, the time when Pac-man was unheard of? Barbie dolls has yet to make its journey to Malaysia?
And Ultraman was our hero... smug

Yes, we used to play with marbles, draw and cut-out dolls from coloured cards then designed, coloured in its dresses on papers, played skipping ropes...re-arranged chairs in tandem and pretended that we were in a car going on holidays to places... the very next day, chairs morphed into our imaginary boat... sailed away to far away land...

Time when... we were full of imagination, creative and resourceful... we used all kind of things that we could find around the house ~ sticks, pebbles, leaves, coconut shells, dug out clayey soil, mom's hibiscus and jasmines bloom...
Sometimes I would 'pretend' to be 'The Cook'... 'cooking' a storm for my siblings who were the 'Father and Mother' in our imaginary household... producing a colourful array of mouthwatering food... of sticks, stones, pebbles and flowers... whistling

That was then....


And NOW ... with 2 teens and hubby dearest, I could no longer play 'Pretend' to be the cook...
because I am the COOK... 
but I could still play with my food... hee hee
Apples, Salmon and Capers ~ came about as the result of letting my inner-child out to play...ingredients from my fruits bowl, larder and fridge... with the little fennel sprigs from my vegetable patch...
D just gobbled up salmon and capers (he dislikes apples)... H had no chance of sampling... because E and I cleaned up the platter...
Tasted great ... thumbs up

Recipe
1 Granny Smith apple
salmon sashimi
1 tablespoon capers
1 lemon
  1. Thinly sliced the apple. Soak for 5 minutes in the lemon juice (half of lemon juice), then drained.
  2. Rinse and strain the capers.
  3. Arrange apple slices in a serving plate, top with salmon sashimi and capers.
  4. Drizzle with the remaining lemon juice.
  5. Serve.
Note: If you are a little uncomfortable or squeamish... to eat raw fish... drizzle some lemon juice and let the lemon juice 'cooked' the fish slices.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Pan Mee/ Tearaway or Pull-apart Noodle


pull-apart-noodle

"What would you like... for Mother's Day next week?" asked H, early last month... and I went.."ermmmm... let me think and I'll let you know"...I don't know

H is a practical man... I accepted the fact that he will not bring home a bunch of lovely roses, he would just cut some from our garden... and secretly hoping to dig the rose bushes out too...tongue To him, its a waste ~ as flowers wont last. 
Diamonds and gold? not that either... as he knows that I dont fancy those bling... bling...
Designer bags? I dont fancy that either... those days of wanting to look chic and cool... to be seen carrying one is over..

So what do I want or need?... My 'Want' list can go on and on and on... but 'Need'?... yeah Mr 'Need' always stop me in my track ... I have to be practical ...  living with pragmatic man ... as well as to set a good example to the kids, so they can be more prudent in digging the coffers...*cough*... our coffers hee hee... and weigh their needs and wants too!!!

This is what I requested for my Mother's Day treat.... Pan (pronounce as Pun..) mee or tearaway /pullapart noodle. A meal to be shared by all...


I missed having this noodle... the last time I had it was 5 years ago...there are many versions and variety...  the best Pan Mee, that I have tasted so far is in Oasis Food Court in Megamall Midvalley, Kuala Lumpur...

Note from H ~ there are a lot of ingredients... a lot of preparation... but in the end ... seeing the smiles of satisfaction on everyone's face... worth the while...

I am participating in Muhibbah Malaysian Monday hosted by Suresh Chong of 3 Hungry tummies. and I am sending off this post to the event... See you there..

Recipe
Noodle
300g flour
2 teaspoon cornflour
2 eggs
1 tablespoon oil
2 tablespoon water
Meat toppings
250g mince chicken
4 garlic - chopped
3 tablespoon oyster sauce
1/2 teaspoon dark caramel sauce
1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon sugar
200ml water
2 teaspoon corn starch
white pepper and salt to taste.
Garnishing
Crispy fried anchovies or ikan bilis
Cloud ear mushroom - soaked and thinly sliced
thinly sliced spring onions
Crispy fried shallots
Choy Sum ~ give a quick blanch
Chillies
Juice of 2 limes
light soy sauce
chopped garlic
cut up chillies
Soup
3 liter water
200g anchovies
2 cm ginger -bruised
salt
pepper
garlic
  1. Prepare Noodle ~Place the dry ingredients in a mixing bowl and add the wet ingredients. Knead into a dough. Set aside to rest for at least 30 minutes. 
  2. Prepare Meat Toppings ~Saute chopped garlic till fragrant. Add in mince chicken. Cook until the chicken turn slightly opaque. Add in sauces, sugar, and sesame oil. Keep stirring until chicken mince is cooked through. Mix corn starch with water and add onto the mince mix. Cook until the sauce thicken. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside.
  3. Prepare the garnshings and set aside.
  4. Mix the cut up chillies with lime juice, light soy sauce with chopped garlic in a bowl and set aside.
  5. Prepare Soup ~Mix everything in a medium size pot and bring to boil. and leave it to simmer with its lid on.
  6. To serve~ Bring a pot of water to boil, flatten and tearway or pull-apart the dough into the size of 50 cents coin, and drop it in the boiling water. The tearaway noddle is ready when it floats up. Scoop up with slotted laddle and into serving bowls.
  7. Top with meat toppings, garnish and ladle some soup into the serving bowl.
  8. Serve hot with some cut up chillies.
Thanks my darling... for the wonderful Mother's Day meal... thumbs up

Friday, June 3, 2011

Granola


Yay... Winter is here!!!!
Its a nice change to wake up to a less than 10 degree Celcius every morning... I can tolerate cold days but not the hot sweltering heat.
The lawn and garden are greener... beautiful... Days like these makes me want to go out and soak in the winter sun with a cup of tea and a book or magazine in hand, or just potter around the vegetable patch... do some weeding...

Not only winter sun in Perth is gorgeous and beautiful... but the cold weather tend to make me go lurking in my larder, looking for my 'Comfort Food' too... I would snack a lot in winter.... Larder is my best friend when I am feeling peckish...my worst enemy to my waistline... sigh


See what I found... while rummaging through my larder...  a packet of sunflower seeds, pepitas, hazelnuts, almond, unfinished packet of dried cranberries and some oats. Looking at all the ingredients ...  homemade granola seems like a brilliant idea!!
It is so easy to make granola... measured everything by the cup... mix everything in a mixing bowl. Microwave honey and oil.... and pour into the raw ingredients... good to go into the oven...set the timer and voila...
I thought that I was doing OK with time... so I ventured out into my garden... with my ears trained to listen out to the oven's beep...
And the oven did beep... but....

I burnt my granola... what a bummer!!!frustrated
If only I'd listened to my mom's advice... to stay put in the kitchen, whenever I am cooking....

Tipped the whole pan into the rubbish bin.... quickly onto making my second batch... This time I stay put in my kitchen... eyes practically glued to the oven...
And the second batch turned out nice... golden, crunchy GRANOLA... healthy winter breakfast... as well as Healthy SNACK for me...


Recipe (adapted from Healthy Cooking ~ Fiona Hunter)
1 cup rolled oats
1/4 cup hazelnuts
1/2 cup almonds
1/4 cup sunflower seeds
1/4 cup pumpkin seeds
1/4 cup canola oil
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup cranberries
1/4 cup sultanas
  1. Pre heat the oven to 140C.
  2. Roughly chopped almonds and hazelnut.
  3. Mix seeds, oats and nuts in a mixing bowl. 
  4. Add canola oil and honey in a bowl. Microwave on HIGH for 20 seconds.
  5. Pour the honey mixture into the seeds mixture.
  6. Stir and mix well.
  7. Bake the granola for 20 minutes until its golden. Keep a close eye on your granola in the oven...
  8. Mix in cranberries and sultanahs (optional).
  9. Leave it to cool.
  10. Store in an airtight container.