Early last month, Sarah of Fantastical Sharing of Recipes, who happens to be our SRC boss lady 😉 called out to all the club members and announced an SRC reunion event. Of course, I signed up for it and for this event, I was assigned Micha’s blog, Cooking Mimi. Micha’s blog is packed with great recipes. I had an absolute blast going through her blog and picking a recipe for today. After a lot of looking around I narrowed my choices down to this Hawaiian Pork, Potstickers (she even makes her own potsticker wrappers), Quick and Crispy Pork Cutlets and her Sweet Chili Pork. Have you spotted the trend here? I somehow happened to be zeroing in on Pork recipes. So this much was clear, I knew I was making Pork. When I saw her recipe for Sweet Chili Pork my mind was made up. This is what I was going to make.
Before we move on to the recipe, let’s talk about this Sweet Chili Pork, shall we? This dish has it all with juicy little pieces of pork tossed in a sweet sauce with mild heat from the Sweet Chili sauce and the crunch of the onion and capsicum just rounds it off beautifully. I could not believe how easy this recipe was. I wanted to try it just to see if a recipe this minimal would hit the spot. And hit the spot it did. I am so glad I tried this out. My husband is not a fussy eater but he is my biggest critic and helps me work on recipes and tweak them. He was floored by this recipe. And I agree with him 100%. This recipe is very similar to the kind of takeaway meals we got back in Bombay, albeit not with pork, but with chicken. Thank you Micha, for an absolute stunner.
I only made a couple of minor additions to the original recipe. I added some finely chopped ginger and garlic and some pieces of capsicum (green peppers) to the recipe. We served this up with some fried rice, but this would work very well with some noodles too.
Sweet Chili Pork
1/4 kg boneless pork
1/3 cup flour
1/4 cup cornstarch
1/2 cup + 1 tbsp vegetable oil
1 large onion, cut into cubes
1 /2 green capsicum, cut into cubes (similar in size to the onion cubes)
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/2″ ginger, finely chopped
1/2 cup sweet chilli sauce
Salt, to taste
1 tbsp lime juice
Heat 1/2 cup of oil in a skillet over moderate heat.
Crack the egg into a small bowl, whisk it and set it aside.
In another bowl, mix the flour and cornstarch.
Cut the pork into bite sized pieces. Toss the pieces in a little salt and lime juice. Toss the pork pieces in the flour mix. Then dip them in the egg and in the flour mix again .
Fry the pieces of pork in batches for about 3-4 minutes a side or until golden brown and crispy. Drain and set aside.
Heat 1 tbsp of oil in another pan.
When the oil is hot, add the onion and capsicum and stir fry till the pieces have just started to soften. I like mine a little crunchy. Cook it to your desired level of doneness.
Add the finely chopped ginger and garlic and stir it around.
Add the sweet chilly sauce and the fried pork pieces. Stir to coat everything in the sweet chili sauce. At this point, if you want a little more sauce in the dish, add some more. Toss well.
Here’s a peek at all my previous SRC posts.
Don’t forget to see what the others have whipped up for our 2018 reunion –
So, a while ago, when I saw this episode of Poh & Co, where Poh (one of my favorite TV chefs) whipped up a Nonya (a type of Malaysian) Chicken Curry, both, my husband and I knew we had to try the recipe out. The recipe does call for a few specialty ingredients, but the first time I made this curry, I didn’t have them and so I left them out. Even then the curry was a great one. But I knew I wanted to try the recipe with all of the ingredients. So I picked up the Pandan leaves and the Shrimp Belachan at a local Asian grocery store and made the curry again. This time with all the ingredients. The result was a mind-blowing curry. Now I don’t often refer to a curry as mind-blowing. A cake, maybe, but never a curry. But this curry is all that, and then some. It is one of my favorite chicken curries. And today I’m going to show you how I make mine. I have altered the method a tiny bit, to make the recipe more convenient and I hope you try this out the next time you want to make a chicken curry.
If you’ve never made a curry before, don’t let the idea scare you. It is easier than you think. I’ve put together a video to walk you through the process.
Let’s move on the the detailed recipe for this Nonya Chicken Curry.
Nonya Chicken Curry
Recipe from: Poh Ling Yeow
3 tbsp Coriander seeds
1 tsp Cumin seeds
1 tsp Fennel seeds
15 dried red chillies
2 onions, roughly chopped
4 cloves garlic
20g toasted Belachan
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
8-10 curry leaves
2 tbsp oil (I use olive oil for all my cooking. You can use whatever oil you normally cook with.)
1 star anise
1 inch cinnamon
1 1/2 kilo chicken pieces
2 potatoes, cut into large cubes
2 birdseye chillies, slit lengthways
1 can coconut cream (400 ml can)
2 pandan leaves
Take the skin off the chicken, cut into pieces, trim the fat off and set aside.
Deseed the dried chillies and soak them in hot water till they’ve rehydrated and softened.
In a dry pan, on medium heat, roast the coriander, cumin and fennel seeds till fragrant. Take them off the pan and set aside to cool.
Using a blender or food processor (you can also use a mortar and pestle if you dont have one), grind the roasted coriander-fennel-cumin seeds mix, drained red chillies, onion, garlic, belachan and turmeric to a fine paste, adding a little water as needed.
Heat oil in a large pot / pan over medium heat. Add the star anise, cinnamon and cloves and let them fry till fragrant about 20-30 seconds.
Add the spice paste (rempah) to the pan and saute for 6-8 minutes till the sauce is very fragrant.
Tear the pandan leaves into 3 strips lengthways and knot them together. Add the pandan and curry leaves to the spice mix.
Add the chicken to the pan and stir to coat with the spice paste. Saute for 1-2 minutes or till the chicken pieces start to look opaque.
Add the coconut cream and stir well.
Add the potatoes, salt and sugar. Add a little water to thin down the sauce a little to reach the desired consistency. Let it come to a boil.
Add the slit birdseye chillies, lower the heat, cover the pot and simmer till tender. Check after 5-7 minutes, add more water if needed, stir to make sure the curry doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pan. Cover the pot and continue cooking till the chicken and potatoes are cooked.
Serve hot with rice. I tried to serve it up like a Nasi Lemak, but with plain rice instead of coconut rice. I added some fried baby anchovies, peanuts, boiled egg and some cucumber slices.
This curry also goes really well with roti or even bread. If you can get on hands on some Roti Canai, even better.
I hope you’re having a great week. I am super excited today. Yes, partly because it is Friday and that is one of favorite days of the week. It is also because, today in a first of many (hopefully), I’ve made a video for this recipe. I have wanted to do this for the longest time, but I’ve been putting it off because I thought I needed to have the perfect kitchen, the perfect cookware and so on. But I have come to realize that not everyone has the perfect kitchen, but we still love to cook up great food and learn new recipes. So instead of waiting for the perfect kitchen stars to align, I was going to start sharing my videos with you to show you that you can cook great food no matter how small or dated your kitchen may be. Since we’re renting at the moment, there’s not much we can do about the situation at the moment, but the focus will always be on delicious food.
In the last few years I’ve cooked on gas stoves, hot plates and ceramic cooktops. All of them have their own set of quirks. Like they say every oven is different, I think every cooktop is different too and you just need to spend some time getting to know it.
On to today’s recipe. This cashew chicken is a quick and easy recipe. You can get it on the table in under 20 minutes. This is the perfect low carb meal when served on a bed of lettuce. You could, however, also serve it up with some fried rice or noodles too. I love it with lettuce and it makes a perfect summer’s meal.
Here’s the video. Let me know what you think. I sure hope you will like and share the video and Subscribe to my channel too. This is my first cooking video, so it’s not perfect and I’ve learnt a lot from this experience. The detailed recipe will also be listed below.
Cashew Chicken on Lettuce
Recipe from: As Easy As Apple Pie
250g boneless, skinless chicken
2 tbsp low sodium soy sauce (Use a little lesser if you’re using regular soy sauce)
2 tbsp oyster sauce
1/2 – 1 tsp red chilly paste
1/2 tbsp olive oil (cooking oil of your choice)
1/2 tbsp sesame oil
1 large clove garlic, finely chopped
1/2 tsp ginger, finely chopped (fresh ginger is best but you can also use lightly dried ginger like I did here)
1/2 cup raw cashew seeds
Iceberg lettuce leaves (or any lettuce of your choice)
Sesame seeds, to garnish
Cut the chicken to bite size pieces.
In a bowl, mix the chicken, soy sauce, oyster sauce and chilly paste and toss well. Set this aside for about 10 minutes to marinade.
While that is happening, chop the ginger and garlic. (Fresh ginger is best, but I didn’t have any so I used some from Gourmet Garden.)
Chop the lettuce leaves into bite size pieces and place them on serving plates.
Now, heat the olive oil in a pan over medium heat. Add the ginger and garlic and saute for about 30 seconds or till they release a lovely aroma and are gently sizzling.
Turn the heat up to medium high and add the chicken and the marinade liquids. Add the sesame oil to the pan.
Stir fry for about 4-5 minutes or till the chicken has cooked through. (Please note, the cook time will depend on the size of the chicken pieces, so watch the pan and make sure the chicken pieces are cooked on all sides and have cooked through.) Stir the contents of the pan frequently, so ensure they don’t burn.
When the chicken is cooked, add the cashew seeds and stir through for about a minute or till they’ve heated through.
And that’s it. Your cashew chicken is ready to serve.
Spoon some of the chicken on the bed of lettuce. Make sure you have a few cashew seeds on each plate.
Sprinkle some sesame seeds on top and serve.
NOTE: This is NOT a sponsored post.
Pin now for later –
When its this hot, all cooking and baking activity in my kitchen drastically falls. We mostly have salads, some sandwiches and any cooked dishes are usually quick and easy ones. I’ve been eager to increase my repertoire of such dishes and after some searching online, I came across this amazing Satay Chicken Noodle Stir Fry recipe. There are a few stages in the recipe, but they’re all really easy and come together very quickly. The beauty of this recipe is that you can serve this either cold as a salad or like I did, slightly warm as a Stir Fry. I can’t tell you how immensely flavorsome and delicious it turned out. You get the nuttiness from the peanuts, the flavor from the curried chicken pieces, the tang from the fresh lime juice, the creaminess from the coconut milk and the freshness from the fresh coriander. In all, it is a beautifully balanced dish. I am so very glad I tried out this recipe and it sure is a keeper.
Satay Chicken Noodle Stir Fry
Adapted from: Recipe Tin Eats
For the dressing –
1/3 cup roasted peanuts (you could also use 1/4 cup peanut butter instead)
1 garlic clove, peeled
1 tbsp sesame oil
2 tbsp soy sauce
2 tsp palm sugar
1 1/2 tbsp Sriracha sauce
2 tbsp sour lime juice
6 tbsp coconut milk
2 tbsp water
1/4 tsp salt, or to taste
For the Satay chicken –
350g chicken breast, cut in half lengthwise and then slice thinly
Salt, to taste
Freshly cracked black pepper, to taste
1 1/2 tsp curry powder
1 tbsp soy sauce
1 1/2 tsp palm sugar
1 tbsp peanut oil (You can use any cooking oil you have)
For the Stir Fry –
1 pack flat dried rice noodles (I used a 200g packet of Pad Thai rice noodles)
1 large or 2 small carrots, julienned
12-15 green beans / french beans, edges trimmed and thinly sliced on the diagonal (Use this only if you are serving this as a stir fry. If you are serving it as a salad, leave it out and just use carrots, cabbage and spring onions)
2 spring onions, finely sliced on the diagonal
(You can use 1 cup of finely sliced green / red cabbage or a combination of both. I didn’t have any, so I left it out this time.)
To serve –
1 red Birdseye chilly, finely sliced on the diagonal (optional)
3 tbsp roasted peanuts, roughly chopped
2 tbsp fresh coriander stalks and leaves, finely chopped
A wedge of sour lime
In a bowl, place the sliced chicken and all the satay chicken ingredients except the oil. Toss well and set aside for about 10-15 minutes to marinade.
While the chicken is marinading, make the dressing. Place all the dressing ingredients into a blender or food processor and blitz till you are left with a smooth dressing.
If it is too dry, add a tiny splash of water (1-2 tbsp of water) and heat through and toss well. (I didn’t need to do this.)
Anyway, I wanted to try making something different and when I came across this recipe, it was a no brainer. I mean it has a concoction called Angry Sauce. How cool is that! I was really excited to try it out. The recipe seemed fairly simple. What I really loved about it is that the wings are baked. There is no frying involved. Yet, you are left with a beautiful crispy skin on the wings and that is just how I like it. It does make this recipe healthier. They are then dunked in a flavorful sauce and tossed. What you end up with is a really tasty, sticky plate of wings that is bound to be a hit at your next party or gathering. There is hardly any hands on time required for this recipe which makes it perfect for a party. And that Angry sauce is so good, a little spicy, tangy and sweet all at the same time. Yummmm. I do hope you try this recipe out. And if you do, I’d love to hear what you think of it.
Chicken Wings in Angry Sauce
Adapted from: Food & Wine
2 pounds chicken wings (split the wings and either set the tips aside for a stock or discard. I bought Marco’s Wing Nibbles from Woolworths that has this stage dealt with so you use the wings as is.)
1 – 1 1/2 tbsp olive oil
Salt, to taste
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 – 2 tbsp gochujang (Korean red chilly paste) (depending on how hot you want the sauce)
1 tsp tabasco sauce
1 tsp red chilly powder
1-2 tbsp water
1 tbsp sugar
2 tsp rice wine vinegar
2 tsp soy sauce
1 spring onion, thinly sliced
1 tsp sesame seeds
Preheat the oven to 180ºC.
Line a large baking sheet with foil and spray with cooking spray. (I just used a Pyrex baking dish and lightly sprayed with olive oil.)
Toss the wings in the olive oil and sprinkle salt and pepper. Toss well to make sure all the wings are well coated.
Place the wings skin side up on the prepared baking tray and bake for about 40-45 minutes until they are cooked through and the skin is crisp.
While the wings are baking, in a small bowl, mix the rest of the ingredients for the sauce, except the spring onion and sesame seeds. If the sauce is too thick, add a little more water to thin it down a little.
Taste the sauce and adjust the spice, salt, sweetness or sourness, as needed.
Drain off any fat that has rendered from the wings while baking, and toss the wings in the sauce till it is well coated.
Sprinkle with the spring onion and sesame seeds.
*** This post is not a sponsored post and I haven’t received any compensation from either Marco’s or Woolworths.
What I also like about this fried rice is you can pretty much use whatever you have on hand. You can switch up the veggies. I almost always use onion, spring onion, capsicum and carrot. I also add zucchini, snow peas, cabbage and baby corn if I have any of them on hand. The same is the case with the protein. Almost always I use a little bacon for flavour and some egg. Then I either use prawns, shredded chicken and sometimes even ham depending on what I have available at the time. So like you see, this fried rice is one of those meals you can put together almost any day of the week, even when your grocery run is due the next day. Apart from cooking the rice, it comes together in one pan – I now use my wok and love it.
This is the quickest way I find to get this on the plate. Soak my rice and when the rice is soaking and cooking, I prep my protien and veggies. When everything is ready, the final dish takes about 10 minutes tops to put together. Its one of my favourite quick and easy weeknight meal options. I tend to add a lot of vegetables and I like it that way, you could drop the quantity of vegetables to suit your liking. This is just a guide to making this fried rice and the quantities are suggestions. Go with what you think you’ll enjoy and adjust to your liking.
Chicken Fried Rice
Serves 3 (as mains)
1 cup basmati rice
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 birdseye chilly (optional – we enjoy hot food but you can leave it out if you dont)
3 spring onions
1 red pepper
6-8 green beans
A handful of finely sliced cabbage (about a cups worth)
3 rashers of bacon (I used streaky bacon)
A cup of shredded chicken (you could used poached, roast, or rotisserie chicken)
A couple of tablespoons of oil (vegetable, olive or sunflower or any other cooking oil of your choice)
1 tsp sesame oil
Salt, to taste
Freshly cracked black pepper, to taste
Approx. 1 tbsp soy sauce (I use salt reduced soy)
1 tsp rice wine vinegar
Rinse the rice a couple of times and drain. Soak in fresh water at room temperature for about 20-30 minutes.
Bring a pot of water to the boil (just like you would for pasta). Add a spoon of salt to the water and carefully add the rice. Cook the rice till almost done (al dente). Don’t cook the rice through as it will turn mushy once you add it to the wok.
Drain the cook rice and using a fork lightly loosen the grains and leave to cool.
In the meanwhile, clean and chop all your vegetables. I like to chop mine in like sized pieces. You could julienne everything or slice it on the diagonal into little chunks. (I will try and get a picture of the chopped up veggies when I make this next, I was in a hurry this time and forgot.)
Dice the bacon rashers and keep aside.
Keep all your ingredients handy. The trick to cooking a delicious fried rice is to cook it on a high heat and cook it quickly.
Heat your wok or pan. Add a little cooking oil to the pan. Crack 2 eggs in a bowl, add a little salt and lightly whisk. Now either make a plain omlette and cut into chunks or a plain scramble. Take the egg off the pan and keep aside.
Next step is to fry off the bacon. Add a little oil if needed and tip the cut bacon into the work and let it cook a little and add some flavor to the pan. Dont cook till crisp. You just want the ends to start changing to a light brown. Now add the garlic and chilly and saute till it gets fragrant.
Add the sesame oil and then tip in the diced pepper and the rest of the veggies and stir fry on high heat till they cook off a little. You still want them to have a little bite.
Add the chopped spring onions.
Add a light sprinkle of salt and some freshly cracked black pepper.
Add the soy sauce and rice wine vinegar and stir to let it coat the veggies. Please adjust the sauce to suit your liking.
Tip in the chicken and egg and stir well to incorporate.
At this stage add the rice to the wok and gently mix everything but mix thoroughly. I use a spatula and a pair of chopsticks to do this.
Once the rice has warmed through, serve hot and top with finely sliced spring onion greens to garnish and if you’re feeling particularly adventurous, some finely sliced fresh chilly.
Enjoy piping hot.
**Leftovers warm up really well the next day too.
The drive to Melbourne from Rye in the Peninsular was smooth. We hit a little traffic once we got closer to Brighton and St. Kilda, but made it in good time. After wandering around the streets of Melbourne, it was time to pick out a spot to have lunch. There are so many options, it is hard to choose. Initially we were in a part of town which had options, but weren’t to interesting. Just when we were ready to settle, we stumbled onto gold, better know as Swanston Street. After checking out the options on the street, which seemed endless, we settled on Rice Paper, specialising in Vietnamese street food. It was a great choice, because my husband and I both love Asian flavours. Oh and this time I remembered to take a few pictures.
Its was really crowded even though we got there at about 2 in the afternoon, but we got seated immediately. The staff were really friendly and on the job. The place seemed very open and airy and I liked that. We were starving after all that walking around, so we decided to try out a few menu options. That wasn’t easy. There were so many things I wanted to try.
We simply had to try the rice paper rolls. I mean, come on! that’s what they’re called! How could we not try them. So we got a couple of prawn rice paper rolls with the spicy hoisin sauce.
The rolls were fresh and tightly packed with succulent prawns, rice vermicelli noodles and fresh greens. We loved the mint leaves in there, it lightened and freshened the rolls up. I would have liked a little more acidity in the sauce though. It was a good thing then that we had also ordered the crab claws.
Now the crab claws themselves, we just okay. I have had better at a takeaway joint on the Gold Coast, QLD (unfortunately I cannot remember the name). But these were crunchy and more importantly came on a bed of gloriously pickled veggies, namely carrot and daikon radish. I absolutely loved the pickled veggies. They were more than just basic pickled vegetables. There was an unmistakable hint of garlic too, which I loved. The dipping sauce was sweet chilly sauce. I preferred this sauce with the rice paper rolls too. But that’s probably just me.
For mains, we called for the Saigon Curry Chicken on rice and the Crispy Skin Chicken on rice.
The Saigon Curry Chicken on rice was this big bowl of Chicken curry with succulent pieces of chicken and this was served with some coconut rice. A beautiful combination, one that any curry lover would be very happy with. The curry was also coconut based and perfectly spiced and flavourful.
The Crispy Skin Chicken on rice came with some fresh salad greens, the pickled veggies (Yay!) some sweet chilly dipping sauce and a huge portion of coconut rice topped with some tiny dried, roasted shrimp (I’m pretty sure that’s what it was). I personally found the rice a little dry to be eaten just as is. It’s a good thing the Saigon Curry Chicken was a generous portion. But that Crispy Skin Chicken was fantastic. Crispy skin as promised with some nice charred, smokey flavour and the meat inside was still moist and flavourful.
We washed all this wonderful food down with a tall glass of Tropical Iced Lychee …
… and a Tropical Iced Longan
The whole meal cost us $44 bucks. However, I think we overdid it and if we had to opportunity to eat here regularly, we’d probably pace ourselves. That being said, I think it was good value for money. The portions were generous, the food flavourful and the ambience was relaxed. I know I’d go back for sure.
Disclaimer: This post is not a sponsored post. I haven’t been compensated for it in cash or kind. This is just a meal we really enjoyed, and all of the comments above, my humble opinion.