This site will be migrating to a new address.
Please visit me at @Køkken and change your subscription to this blog to my RSS Feed

You Will Be Redirected!

Please do not leave any more messages on this blog. I will not be publishing or responding to any more comments left here. You will be automatically redirected to All posts have been migrated. You will be able to locate any posts by performing a quick search at my new site. Thank you.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Hong Kong Soya Sauce Fried Noodles - 豉油王炒面

Fried Noodles6

Fried Noodles4

Fried Noodles7

One of the dishes which I simply cannot resist when I am in Hong Kong, is a good plate of the plain, simple Soya Sauce Fried Noodles. Totally simplistic in its make up and yet so flavourful and satisfying. This is somewhat similar to our morning breakfast favourite, the economy Fried Beehoon/ Fried Noodles. These are commonly fried in big herd-feeding batches with just soya sauce and a little bean sprouts and are usually sold in a good fulfilling portion for a humble 80 cents to a dollar - hence the word Economy. We have since then turned affluent and started to add a myriad of side dishes (the likes of fried egg, Luncheon meat, chicken wings, curry vegetables etc...)  to make this into quite a yummilicious  feast. However, as delicious as the Economy Fried Noodles could be, one will never find it on the menu of a Chinese restaurant. The Hong Kong Soya Sauce Fried noodle, however, often comfortably shares a place in the menu with fancy dim sums and gourmet abalones...

The critical component to a great Soya Sauce Fried Noodles is a good soya sauce. A premium grade soya sauce lends nuances of delicate flavour and fragrance to the dish which instantly elevates this otherwise simple, no frills dish to its classic, evergreen status.
After the soya sauce, the choice of noodle would understandably be another important component for this dish. Dried egg noodles are usually quickly blanched in hot water to soften the noodles before they are fried to a dry, glossy consistency. The other accompaniments cooked together with the noodles are as humble as they come - bean sprouts and a little Chinese Chives are the staple fare. Sprinkle on a handful of toasted sesame seeds and this proudly becomes restaurant worthy. Enjoy!

Fried Noodles4(250)
Recipe :
Dried Egg Noodle               200g (blanched quickly in hot water to soften. Drain and set aside)
Premium light soya sauce     2 tbsp (生抽王)
Premium dark soya sauce    1 tbsp (老抽王)
Oyster sauce                       1/2 tbsp
Sugar                                  1/8 tsp
Pepper                                Generous dash

Bean sprouts                       1 loose cup
Chinese Chives                    1/2 loose cup ( I didn't have this with me so I omitted this)
Toasted Seseame seeds       Generous sprinkle.

Method :
1. Heat 1 tbsp of oil in a heated wok.
2. Add bean sprouts and fry for 1 minute over medium heat. Add softened noodles and fry for 1/2 minute over high heat.
3. Add all seasoning and continue to fry noodles over high heat for about 2-3 minutes.
4. Add in Chinese chives and fry for another 1/2 minute. Sprinkle on toasted sesame seeds and dish out. Serve with chilli sauce.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Traditional Baked Mooncake




When I went to get my mooncake ingredients at Kwong Cheong Thye 2 weekends ago, I was suprised to see the little alley way along Geylang Lorong 27 jammed with vehicles and the shop house corridor blocked by a long queue leading to a traditional Teochew pastry shop. The shop, Thye Moh Chan Cake House has been selling traditional Teochew pastry and mooncake for almost 70 years and they have decided to close down the business as no one in the family was interested to inherit and continue with this traditional craft.

I have never eaten any pastry from Thye Moh Chan so I have little attachment to the shop. Nevertheless, it was still sad to see something so steep in heritage die in our fast paced, modern world. I had mentioned before how I hope our younger generation will not grow up only knowing how to make muffins, macarons and cupcakes. With pretty images of these western treats galore on the internet, everyone dreams of creating treats ala Pierre Herme, Adriano Zumbo.... However,I believe the internet can still cast its influences in many ways. Take for example, I would never ever have dreamt of making my own mooncake last year, if not for this little space which I call my food blog. Just like what I had mentioned in my last Durian Snowskin Mooncake post, baking these pastries is not as difficult as what it seems. True, we don't take the trouble to cook the lotus paste from scratch nowadays but if that is the little compromise we choose to make to connect with our heritage, it is, in my opinion, a harmless little indulgence.

So I promise you that you will continue to see my mooncake features for the many many Mid Autumn Festivals (mooncake festival) to come.  Happy Mid Autumn Festival to all Asians who will be celebrating this day of reunion.


I am submitting this entry to Aspiring Bakers #11: Mid-Autumn Treats (September 2011) hosted by Happy Home Baker.
Recipe :
Dough (from Kowng Cheong Thye)
300g             Hong Kong Flour
180g             Golden syrup
60g               Peanut Oil
1 tbs             Alkaline Water

For rest of ingredients and method, please refer here.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Durian Snowskin Mooncake



Making mooncakes, contrary to what most people think, is not difficult. The pretty, exotic molds lend a wow factor which belies the simplicity of the modern day process of making this traditional celebratory pastry. Modern day accessibility allows one to purchase a myriad of ready made lotus paste in a wide array of exotic flavours. I don't believe I know of anyone who would cook their own lotus paste from scratch, a process that entails long arduous  continuous stirring over a boiling cauldron....

Compared to the traditional baked mooncake, the Snow Skin Mooncake is even more beginner friendly. Not requiring baking of any sort, the process only involves mixing of cooked glutinous flour (store bought), sugar and shortening before wrapping this dough with the ready made filling. To be honest, I have never been a big fan of the Snow Skin Mooncake and am even a lesser fan of it now that I realise that it involves the mixing of uncooked shortening.... However, the snow skin wrapping does open up  possibilities for more intriguing flavour combination, something that is less rich. I have always for example wondered about the Mango Pomelo mousse like filling in Goodwood Park Hotel's creation. This year, they have even introduced a new Lychee With Lime Marshmallow flavour.

For me, the Durian Mooncake will always be associated with Goodwood Park Hotel.  They have made it wildly popular more than 10 years ago. Though some better ones have been offered by other bakeries, the Goodwood Park durian mooncake will always have a special position among the durian mooncake lovers.


I have no idea how the durian mooncake is being made but was game to give it a go. Working with 100% pure durian pulp, I cooked this first over fire to remove as much moisture as possible.  Next, I tried to semi freeze the portioned durian pulp in the fridge before wrapping them. I have to concede, this is not easy. I had trouble with the degree of firmness of the frozen pulp - it can neither be too hard nor too soft. Then the snow skin poses another problem - it has to be just malleable enough to ensure that the skin does not break or crack during the wrapping process. I made a batch of dough but was only able to get 4-5 decent looking mooncakes. (the recipe should yield 20!)  I doubt that I am doing it right but at least I have a couple to show off...  So if you have any good tips to make these, please do share.

I am submitting this entry to Aspiring Bakers #11: Mid-Autumn Treats (September 2011) hosted by Happy Home Baker.

Recipe :
150g         Fried glutinous rice flour
200g         Icing sugar
65g           Shortening
150g         Cold Drinking water

250g         100% Durian Pulp
7g             Sugar

Method :
1. Cook durian pulp in a heavy bottom saucepan until boiling. Add sugar and stir until it is completely dissolved and relatively dry.
Cool down to room temperature. Portion into 50g portions and freeze.

1. Sift all dry ingredients together. Add shortening and mix well with the dry ingredients.
2. Add water gradually to the flour and mix to form a dough.
3. Leave the dough to 'proof' for 20mins.
4. Portion out the dough into 30g portion. Flatten and wrap a 50g portion of the durian pulp. Press with mooncake mold and store in freezer.
5. Defrost before consuming.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Nagaimo Soy Pudding : 山药豆乳布丁



When I was in Taiwan a few weeks ago, my favourite cold appetizer dish at meal time was the Nagaimo. (山药/淮山) Prepared and served in a variety of ways, they were crunchy and totally refreshing. Long known for its medicinal values, the Chinese have always used them to balance the yin and yang energy in the body. It has been used to treat digestive, repiratory and diabetes problems ... in short, this is  a healthy root vegetable and is often featured in macrobiotics diet.

I have not exactly been a big fan of this root until recently. I recall my first encounter with it was at a Japanese restaurant almost 20 years ago. My Japanese boss had ordered a Chirashi Sushi topped with a white gooey blob- the musilaginous consistency of which was not appetising at all. Then many years later, my Taiwanese colleague invited me to his house for dinner. His wife prepared a bland looking porridge with sliced Nagaimo-it was dull and tasteless. I recall her raving about the nutritious value of the root but I was not quite impressed.

When I was in Taiwan a few weeks back, the Nagaimo was in season and we practically had it for every meal as a cold starter. Usually prepared simply by chilling the cut roots, they were served like a salad drizzled with a fruity, tangy plum sauce. With a pear like crunch, it was absolutely delicious. This time round, I became truly hooked. When I got back, I started to look for recipes that feature the Nagaimo. I found a couple in my Japanese cookbook (Delicious Macrobiotic Meals) and I couldn't wait to experiment with them.

The first recipe I have chosen to work on is a dessert dish where the Nagaimo is grated and cooked with soy milk and agar powder. Very low in calorie, this dense, mousse-like dessert is delicious when eaten with a drizzle of maple syrup. 0% guilt and 100% goodness - I have just found a new favourite addition to my diet plan!
nagaimopudding4 (250)
Recipe :

Nagaimo                 50g
Powder agar           1 tsp
Soy Milk                1/2 cup
Maple syrup           To serve

Method :
1. Peel the skin of nagaimo. (Wear gloves as you do this as the sap on the skin will cause skin irritation) Wrap peeled nagaimo in plastic wrap and microwave for 3-4 mins.
2. Mash (1) while still hot with a fork.
3. In a saucepan, add (2), soy milk and powder agar. Cook over low heat until mixture is smooth and thickened.
4. Pour (4) into molds and chill in refrigerator until set.
5. Demold and serve with maple syrup.


Related Posts with Thumbnails