Monday, January 11, 2010

Yikes!! Oh and Beef Stew too...

Gorgeous Photo by my colleague Ebee

I have been sooo very bad and I'm ashamed to admit that my blog has been so neglected that I even forgot to pay for my domain on time and I've kinda lost it...well apparently I can get it back but by paying waaaay more than I paid for it in the first place and I'm currently not in the position to do so which sucks!

I hope everyone has had a good start to the new year...if there are any of you still out there reading my blog here is a beef stew recipe for you...I usually make boeuf bourguignon but since my colleagues are muslim I had to omit the wine and the bacon so I did a regular hearty stew instead. My secret ingredient came about by accident...I had forgotten to buy tomato paste and didn't have anything tomato like in the kitchen apart from I tried it out and it was yummy!! This is just such a satisfying dish especially when paired with a crusty baguette. 

This is one of those dishes where measurements don't matter much and it depends on how many you're cooking for. 

Beef Stew

Beef Chunks
Chopped Carrots
Chopped Celery
Chopped Mushrooms
Chopped Onions
Chopped Garlic
1 Bouquet Garni spice bag (For meat)
Beef Stock to cover meat and vegetables
3 Tbs Ketchup
Salt and Pepper to taste

Brown the meat in a large pan. Take the meat out and leave the heat on. Add in the onions and garlic and let them sweat. Add in the carrots, celery, and onions till they soften. Then you can add the meat back in and cover with chicken stock. Add the ketchup and the bouquet garni. Cover and let this simmer for 3hours and then add salt and pepper to taste. 

Monday, November 16, 2009

Yet another update...

I'm terrible I know! No excuses either...I would say that Sophia from Burp & Slurp has put it perfectly:

burpandslurp said...

Update, update, update~ 
Me thinks you are having too much fun in your new job! ;-)

To be honest this is entirely true. I have been having way too much fun at my new job and with all the cooking and eating I do here and the posting I do on my work site I kind of forget that I need to do some writing here too!

I know it's way past Halloween...but do check out the cute diorama and recipes I did for work. This was extremely fun to come up with and the story was something different to write.

So you see I have no excuses but I do admit I have been distracted by my dream job! And it's not often that people get to say that and so I'm thankful that I am one of the few who can say it.

In addition to all the excitement in the FriedChillies kitchen I've also been busy with the Malaysia ASEAN Heritage Trail event. This is where Master Chefs from all over the region do cooking demos over the span of a month. I got to try out something really different and actually interview them on camera. Wanna see me on camera? Check out this teaser video! It was my first time doing anything like this and I was super nervous. There are also videos of the chef demos and some of the interviews I did with them on here. More to come over the next week.

This is what has been keeping me busy and I haven't forgotten you guys! I shall try to post a recipe soon.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Blog Love...

I was recently given this award from The Rockgarden. It's a nice feeling when you get these awards here and there...first of all because you become aware of people who are reading your blog...and second it's great to know you're not just rambling on to yourself!

So, here's how it works: Accept the award, post it on your blog together with the name of the person who has granted the award, and his or her blog link. Pass the award to 15 other blogs. Remember to contact the bloggers to let them know they have been chosen for this award.
And now to share the love:

Alexandra from Alexandra's Kitchen : Gorgeous photos and beautiful couldn't ask for more!

Sophia from Burp and Slurp : I love how honest and open she is about her ED and it's wonderful to see her overcome her fears one by one as she gets stronger each day. What an inspiration!

Jessica from Apples and Butter : Another blog with phenomenal photos and fun recipes...with a very nicely done 'how to' section for certain things.

Dharm from Dad ~ Baker & Chef : He is always taking on baking challenges and succeeding...always a pleasure to read!

Shauna from Gluten-Free Girl : She eats amazing meals despite being gluten-free and her zest for life is intoxicating!

Arwen from Hoglet K : Not only does she cook...she has a green thumb too! Imagine cooking food fresh from the garden.

Lorraine from Not Quite Nigella : This Sydneysider is brilliant...she's creative in the things that she makes and also in the way she decorates/styles her food.

Carol from Alinea at Home : This trooper is cooking recipes from the Alinea cookbook one by one...enough said!

Becky from TheNomadGourmand : She is adventurous and always up for meeting up with new people to eat...I just wonder where she puts it all!!

Boo from Masak-Masak : This blog is a combination of great photography and delectable local Malaysian places to eat. I'm hungry every time I click on!

Anita from Leave Room for Dessert : Her desserts are to die for! And she makes it all look so simple.

Meena from A Whiff of Lemongrass : She sure does know her way around a camera...stunning photography!

Seb from Colliding Continents : He's an old school friend who now has a cool travel blog that is up to date with the latest information. Check it out for tips and more.

FBB from Fat Boy Bakes :  I love his wit and humor!

Pamela from In My Shoes : This uber creative mom does all kinds of amazing projects with her children...I love reading her blog and getting ideas(I'm going to be an aunt in can never be too prepared!)

Speaking of being sister baked these cookies recently as her trial attempt for when the baby her own words she needed to 'practice being a good mother'. This is the same sister who doesn't cook at all but she now has motivation to learn!

These cookies rose somewhat and became kinda cake-like...but you know what? They were still delicious despite the appearance and texture! I think she's well on her way to being a good mother!

Steak Wrap

Yesterday was the first day I got to properly cook in my new home kitchen...and what did I decide to make? A simple but oh so yummy steak wrap! 

I've been on a bit of a meat binge lately...last week at work my project was to create 3 burgers from around the world...Greek, Mexican, and Korean. If you've been reading my blog you know that I am a to be paid to develop burgers and taste them...why it's as if this job was tailor made just for can imagine the sheer excitement! I would love to share the recipes with you now but I think it's best if you check them out on my company's site once we post them up. I'll be sure to include the link here!

Which brings me to dinner last night...I wasn't thinking of meat...but then at the grocery store I came across a package of minute steaks for only RM6....and it's not everyday that you find meat that cheap!! So I picked it up and decided right away that dinner was going to be a simple yet satisfying wrap.

It was delicious...the meat had a good bite to it without being chewy...and the flavours of the creamy avocado, fragrant cilantro, peppery rocket, tangy tomatoes, zingy onions, and spicy mustard worked together beautifully!

Steak Wrap

(As for the amounts this is totally up to you...this is a rough guide of the ingredients but you can put more or less of each thing according to your taste preference)

- Strips of Minute Steak
- Diced Avocado
- Diced Tomatoes
- Diced Onions
- Chopped Cilantro
- Rocket Leaves
- Spicy Dijon Mustard
- Tortilla Wraps
- Salt and Pepper to taste

Grill the steaks on high for a minute on each side just to get a nice coloring and sear the surface. Season with salt and pepper and set aside covered in foil to rest. After a few minutes slice the steak into little pieces. Combine the avocado, tomatoes, onion, and cilantro in a bowl and add salt and pepper. 

To assemble spread some dijon mustard on the tortilla wrap, top with rocket leaves, meat slices, and the veggie mixture. Fold and seal shut on a hot skillet or on a sandwich toaster.  Enjoy!

Friday, October 09, 2009

An Update

I've been busy settling in to the new office and I just wanted to give you guys a glimpse of what I've cooked up in the kitchen...the wonderful photos were taken by my arty design colleague...

This is a very simple olive and onion pizza...I decided to make this because I wanted to try out a recipe for a thin crust pizza base that doesn't need to proof...this is a dough that you can just mix and roll out right away and pop in the oven...this is done faster than the time it takes for you to pick up the phone and call Domino's pizza...and homemade is always much better!

All you need is 2cups of flour, 3/4 cup water, 2tsp yeast, 1tsp sugar, a pinch of salt and 2tbs olive oil...mix it all up...knead and roll out as thin as you can get it...add toppings of your choice...pop in the oven at 180C and cook till the crust browns slightly. This recipe makes 2 pizzas.

With this recipe I don't think I'll ever call for a pizza again!

We've also had a lot of filo pastry lying round the office which we've been meaning to use I stewed some fresh nectarine slices in a grapefruit cranberry juice with some sugar...and then I put this together baklava style...a few slices of pastry brushed with butter...then I layered on the nectarines...and then layered on more slices of pastry followed with a ricotta, nutella, nut mixture...this was interesting and tasted like a fruit pie...

I also made spinach, ricotta, walnut rolls...those were delicious!!

This is what I've been busy doing in the kitchen at work over the past few week I'm cooking up a series of burgers from around the world...and also some ghoulish halloween treats!

Friday, October 02, 2009

My New Office

Ok so I've told you that there's been all these changes lately...well now it's time for me to let you know more! 

I am the new Food Editor for all food media company here. They do everything from food reviews to food shows to recipe development and more! 

This is the lovely kitchen at the office that I get to work in and create all sorts of delectable goodies!

A gorgeous cosy kitchen like this can only inspire...and I am certainly inspired to work here!

Friday, September 25, 2009

Multi Grain Chocolate Chip Pancakes

There have been a lot of changes around here lately...for starters I've got a new job which is more food focused! I'll be doing food writing, recipe development and much much more. I took a week off inbetween jobs and I've spent my time off mainly away from my computer but I thought I would just write a little note to say hi.

R and I have also found our new place and are moving next weekend...finally we'll be settled in a place of our own where I will be more inspired to cook and create! We've lived with housemates for the past few years and so I'm looking forward to having a place to own little haven to retreat to.

And now onto food...since I've had a whole week off I've had lazy mornings...and with lazy mornings comes breakfast! I made these delicious fluffy pancakes the other day with a bag of Bob's Red Mill organic 7 grain pancake mix. These were delicious and so easy to make...I'll even go as far as to say that they could be kinda healthy too since they're filled with all sorts of hearty grains.

1 Cup Bob's Red Mill Pancake Mix
1 Egg
1 Tbs Oil
3/4 Cup Cold Milk
1/2 Cup Chocolate Chips

Mix all the ingredients until just blended

and drop by spoonful on a preheated pan

Cook on the first side till the edges start to firm up and then flip. Serve hot with syrup....or as I like to have my pancakes...with peanutbutter! Yum!

Friday, September 11, 2009

Vegetable Tart with Crispy Bacon

I feel a pang of guilt every time my blog is neglected...I feel bad that there are super bloggers out there who are somehow able to maintain a busy life while still cooking or visiting new restaurants...those bloggers are a joy to follow especially when I'm in need of something inspiring to read...but those bloggers make bloggers like me feel terrible!

Sigh...but I guess we all do the best we can...and that's the same with cooking. The food we cook...especially new recipes don't always turn out as perfect as imagined...I tend to be a perfectionist in the kitchen and I get quite upset when things don't work out...take this tart for example...I saw it on Apples and Butter's blog and was immediately inspired...I could see all sorts of flavours playing together on a light buttery puff pasty...and to tell you the truth it did turn out quite well and my dinner companions loved it...but there were a few glitches that irked me...for starters the crust was gorgeous but the centre was all soggy and didn't cook very well...and the bottom stuck to the pan so getting it out was quite a task...but all in all it was delicious if you could get past the aesthetics of it all! I did the best I could...

Vegetable Tart with Crispy Bacon

1 Handful sliced leek
1 Handful eggplant slices
1 Red pepper cubed
1 Handful fried bacon, chopped in pieces
1 Handful sliced mushrooms
2 T olive oil
1 Sheet puff pastry
1/2 Cup tomato sauce (I used a sauce with ricotta cheese, you can also choose to use pesto or any other spread to liven this up)
Egg wash
Salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 200C. Toss the vegetables with the olive oil and spread out on a roasting pan. Roast until beginning to soften and slightly brown on some edges (about 30 minutes). Leave the oven on at 200C.

Score the puff pastry with a pairing knife to create a 1 inch border. Spread the sauce of choice inside the border and use a pastry brush to apply the egg wash to the border area. Spread the roasted vegetables over the sauce, sprinkle the crispy bacon on and bake the tart for 20 minutes or until the crust is golden brown.

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Yoghurt Coleslaw with Grated Apple

This was a cat that took a nap in my lap when I was at the beach bar in Penang over the holiday weekend...just too adorable to not post!

I am back! Well sort of...I'm still at my sister's place...but my cousin who was visiting from France has gone back home and so now I have more time on my hands to cook and blog!

Last night I decided to try a little something different than the usual dinner repertoire...I was craving something with smoky Cajun spices...something low in fat but packed with flavour! I ended up cooking blackened Cajun chicken breasts and serving it up with a side of coleslaw and spiced kidney beans...

Now I generally don't like coleslaw...the creamy awful kind that they serve in fast food restaurants like KFC...the ones laden with so much mayo that you can't even distinguish the crisp slivers of cabbage…I’m not a fan of mayo so that alone is a turn off...

So when I was thinking of the best match for my spicy Cajun chicken it was weird that a cold light creamy coleslaw popped into my head…of all things! Gosh…sometimes I have cravings that I just cannot explain…In my mind though this coleslaw was not going to be made with mayo…I decided to make it with yoghurt instead…and to give it a little juicy sweetness I also grated apples into the mix.

It was the perfect match for the hot spicy chicken…cooling and refreshing with a slight tangy creaminess…the added bite of cilantro was the cherry on the cake! After having this for dinner…I think coleslaw might make regular appearances at my dinner table!

Yoghurt Coleslaw with Grated Apple

1/2 Head of Cabbage, shredded
2 Spring onions, sliced thinly
2 Apples, grated(squeeze a little lemon to keep these from turning brown)
Handful of chopped cilantro
1/2 Cup plain yoghurt
1 tsp Salt
1/8 tsp Cayenne pepper

Toss the shredded cabbage with the salt and let it sit for 30mins. This draws some of the juices out. Toss in the spring onions, grated apples, and cilantro and mix well. Add in the yoghurt and cayenne pepper and mix till everything is coated.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

It's Been A While...

Dear Readers...I have not gone off in search for the rarest food item known to mankind and disappeared in the process...I have not been asked to host a new show on the food network thus leaving me no time to blog...I have not been whisked away on a romantic journey with a celebrity nearly as exciting has happened...I am currently in between homes...R and I moved out from our condo but don't have a new one yet and so we're living at my sister's place in the meantime...this has been a bit hectic and to top it off my cousin Aurelia from France has been visiting and so we've been showing her know how these things mean try to muster up some energy to blog...but it just doesn't happen...other things take up your time and energy and before you know it days have gone past in a blur...

I am sorry to have left you hanging...and I don't have anything to put up on here relating to food...but I do want to introduce you to my current adorable sister's 3 cats:

The beautiful Souk...this photo does not do her any justice...she's gorgeous and has such a soft coat...

And the sweet playful Tigger (who has an obsession with feet!) and good looking Mika (who comes running from a mile away the minute he smells what I'm cooking)...

Aren't they just the cutest?