Friday, 24 October 2014

Nasi Kuning Goreng (Fried Yellow Rice)

I prepared a new fried rice recipe using yellow rice and minced beef for lunch today. Of course if one prefers white rice, it can be used instead.  To enhance the taste, kurma and curry powders were added along with diced carrot and red capsicum. Best eaten with a sunny-side-up egg (telur mata lembu) and a dash of kicap asin or manis (salty or sweet soy sauce).

Ingredients (serves 4):
350 g basmati rice
2 tsp turmeric powder
about 450 to 500 ml water (depending on rice)
1 tsp instant beef stock granules
1 tsp cooking oil

250 g minced beef
1 capsicum (red bell pepper), to be deseeded and finely diced
1 carrot, to be peeled and finely diced
1 cinnamon stick
3 cloves
3 cardamom
2 petals of star anise
1 medium-size onion, to be peeled and finely sliced
2 pips garlic, to be peeled and finely sliced
1.5 cm ginger, to be peeled and sliced into sticks
1 tbsp curry powder
1 tbsp kurma powder
2 tbsp cooking oil
2 tbsp ghee
salt to taste

fried shallots, for garnishing
sunny-side-up eggs, for garnishing

Wash basmati rice and transfer to a bowl.  Add a little water to just cover the rice. Then, add turmeric powder and leave aside for about half an hour to an hour.

Pass through a sieve and transfer to a pot.  Add water, instant beef stock and cooking oil.  Cook over medium heat until all liquid has been absorbed.  Stir well before putting on the lid.  Reduce heat to low and cook for another 30 minutes.

Prepare all other ingredients.

In a wok, heat oil and ghee over medium heat.  Stir-fry dry cinnamon stick, cloves, cardamom and star anise until fragrant.  Then, add sliced onion, garlic, ginger, kurma and curry powders.  Stir-fry until the oil/ghee are infused into the spices.

Add diced carrots and stir-fry for about 5 minutes or until almost cooked.  Then, add minced beef and cook until it changes colour.  Lastly, add diced capsicum and cook further for about two minutes.

Finally, add cooked yellow rice and salt to taste.  Mix thoroughly.

Serve sprinkled with fried shallots, a sunny-side-up egg on top with a dash of sweet or salty soy sauce and cucumber slices.

Bon Appetit!

Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Salmon & Spinach Lasagna

I prepared this dish for tonight's dinner to please my two boys who requested for both salmon and spinach.  Both fresh or frozen spinach may be used in the recipe.  I would recommend not to use any instant bechamel sauce.  Just follow the simple instructions on how to make your own delicious sauce.

1 kg fresh spinach (or frozen)
400 g salmon filet (skinless), to be cut into 4 pieces
salt & pepper
lasagna sheets
60 g grated parmesan cheese

1 medium-size onion, to be peeled and finely diced
2 tbsp plain flour
2 heaped tsp instant vegetable stock granules
500 ml milk
salt & pepper to taste
1 tbsp lemon juice (optional)

a 30 cm x 30 cm (or 30 cm x 25 cm) baking dish

If you are using fresh spinach, remove the hard stems.  Then, immerse in water to remove all sand particles and transfer to a colander.  In a big pot, bring water to boil and add a little salt.  Blanch spinach for about 2 minutes.  It is better to blanch in two portions.  Once done, remove and immerse immediately in ice cold water. Then, squeeze to remove excess water and transfer to a bowl.

If you are using frozen spinach, add them to a medium-size pot and heat over low heat until thawed and warmed.  This procedure will take more than half an hour.  Do not add water.  Once thawed, stir gently and add a pinch of salt.  Transfer to a colander and squeeze excess water.  Leave aside in a separate bowl.

In a saucepan, heat butter over medium heat.  Add diced onion and stir-fry until transparent.  Then, add flour and cook for about 2 minutes.  Stir well by using a small whisk.  Add milk a little at a time and keep stirring in order that no lumps are formed. Then, add instant granules and season with salt & pepper to taste.

Season salmon with salt and pepper.  Leave aside.

Spread about 3 - 4 tbsp of bechamel sauce on the base of baking dish.  Add 2 - 3 lasagna sheets on top and spread bechamel sauce on lasagna sheets, making sure that all surfaces are covered.  Then, add half quantity of spinach and spread all over before adding two salmon filets on top.

Arrange another layer of lasagna sheets on top and spread bechamel sauce all over, followed by remaining spinach and salmon filets.  Then, sprinkle about 2 - 3 tbsp grated parmesan cheese before adding the last layer of lasagna sheets.  Spread the remaining bechamel sauce all over and sprinkle with parmesan cheese.

Bake in a preheated fan oven at a temperature of 180° C for about 35 minutes or until golden brown. Serve warm.

Bon Appetit!

Baked Salami & Capsicum Bread Snack

If you are short of time and in a hurry to prepare something quick for your kids, try this simple snack. Just halve the bread rolls and spread cream cheese (herbs flavour).  Then, sprinkle some diced salami and red bell pepper.  Season with salt and pepper before sprinkling some grated Emmental cheese and then, bake in a moderate hot oven for about 15 minutes.  The taste is delicious and our son thought that I baked the frozen Bistro Mini Baguette from Dr. Oetker!

Ingredients (serves 2):
4 bread rolls, to be halved
any cream cheese spread (herbs flavour)
8 slices of turkey or chicken salami, to be diced
1 red capsicum (bell pepper), to be washed, deseeded & diced
salt & ground black pepper to taste
grated Emmental cheese

Spread cream cheese on bread rolls halves.  Sprinkle some diced salami and red bell pepper on top. Then, season with salt and pepper before sprinkling some grated Emmental cheese.

Bake in a preheated fan oven at a temperature of 180° C for about 15 minutes.

Serve immediately.

Bon Appetit!

Monday, 20 October 2014


Laugenbrezel is a kind of speciality bread in South Germany.  Made of yeast dough, the Brezeln are dipped in Natron (bicarbonate of soda) mixture and sprinkled with coarse salt before baking.  As the Bavarian saying "Ruck zuck a schnelle Suppen" (soup in a flash) goes, it is true that the preparation of this soup does not take more than 20 minutes.  A wonderful idea to use up day old Brezeln, of course you may use any kind of bread of your preference.  This soup is very tasty and will fill up any hungry tummy in no time!

Ingredients (serves 2 - 3 persons):
1 "old" Brezel from the day before
100 g Butterschmalz or butter or ghee
1 medium-sized onion, to be peeled and finely diced
2 pips of garlic, to be peeled and finely minced
1 litre instant beef stock
1 egg, to be beaten lightly
salt & ground black pepper to taste
chopped chives for garnishing (optional)

Slice the Brezel into thin slices.

In a saucepan, heat butter over medium heat.  Stir-fry Brezel slices until golden brown.  Then, add diced onion and stir-fry until transparent.

Add minced garlic and beef stock.  Bring to a slight simmer before adding the beaten egg.  Bring soup to a boil, do not stir in order that the egg solidifies.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Serve hot garnished with chopped chives.

Bon Appetit!

Sunday, 19 October 2014


I prepared some pancakes for afternoon tea today.  The recipe is very simple and can be multiplied to your needs.  Following recipe yields about 24 pancakes of 12 cm in diameter.  Taste delicious when served warm with honey.  They are also great for breakfast!

3 cups plain flour
6 tsp baking powder (for thicker pancakes) - I used less today i.e. 3 tsp
1/2 tsp salt or to taste
3 tbsp sugar
6 tbsp cooking oil or olive oil
3 cups milk
3 eggs

some cooking oil to grease the pan

Note:  I used a 250 ml capacity cup.

In a large bowl, add all ingredients together and mix thoroughly until there are no lumps.

Heat a small pan over medium heat and brush with some oil.  Pour a ladleful of batter in pan.  Once bubbles appear on the surface, turn over the pancake and cook the other side until golden brown. Once done, transfer to a serving plate and repeat procedure until batter is used up.

Serve warm with honey!

Happy Baking!