Saturday, November 22, 2008

My Birthday Trip to JB :)

We decided to go to JB for my birthday. Since I've not got a chance to try vege food in JB, we took this as an opportunity to try some places. We went to JB City Square and tried the 'Delicious Cafeteria.' I had the assam laksa while hubby had chicken rice. The assam laksa was the most delicious I've ever had. It was as equally good as the non-veg version. Very aromatic and full of spices. Hubby's chicken rice dish's rice itself was fragrant with ginger but we were not pleased with the mock meat 'chicken' which is the standard fare.  

Alien Green Mee Goreng

I had some purple cabbage left after making the white-purple cabbage stir fry. So I decided to use it in a yellow noodles stir fry. Unfortunately, the purple cabbage leached colour which made the noodles turn an unusual green. So, I decided to call it Alien Mee Goreng!

Quinoa Stuffed Bell Peppers

During our trip to Pasir Panjang Wholesale Centre, we bought quite a lot of bell peppers of various colours. Since I wanted to make something different, I decided to make some stuffed peppers for dinner. This is the first time I was making it and usually the recipes asked for long grain rice to be used as the stuffing. For a change, I decided to go for quinoa which is high in protein. I put a tiny bit of cheese on top and grilled it in the oven. I also made a simple side of broccoli and grilled some tofu with soy sauce and sprinkled some sesame seeds. 

Traditional Indian Rice Meal

I love rasam and so I made this Indian spicy sour soup with some curried potatoes, purple and white cabbage stir fry and turmeric okra. Of course, an Indian meal is not complete without some crunchy papaddam. 

Breakfast Boost

This is a simple breakfast drink I had recently. Banana (soy)milkshake topped with some fresh passionfruit pulp. High in potassium for the morning brain boost and high in Vitamin C to perk up your skin :)

 I love passionfruit, it is really so beautiful tasting and the aroma really evokes the passion in u :) How aptly named! 

Friday, November 21, 2008

Tom Yum Noodle Soup

A couple of weeks ago, hubby and I went to Pasir Panjang Wholesale Centre to buy some vegetables. I also wanted to check out the Friendly Vegetarian Food Supplier. It was a good trip cos' the veg food supplier had a very good range of food products. I bought some fish slices, tom yum paste, vegetarian belachan and some fruit rojak sauce. 

Since I've always loved tom yum, I decided to have a go at it using the paste. I used laksa noodles and the paste with lots of veges. I also added more lime zest for the extra kick! In all, it was quite good but I wasn't quite satisfied with it. I need to tweak the vegetables and make my own paste! :) 

Noodles on Banana Leaf

Hubby has a thing for noodles served on leaves like the traditional hokkien noodles. So we were in Sheng Siong and came across some banana leaves at 50 cents for 4 pieces. :) We decided to indulge ourselves in some banana leaves and I made some noodles and served it on the banana leaves. My preference would be hot pipping rice on banana leaf though.. It imparts a very lovely flavour that adds an interesting dimension to the food :)

Bell Peppers Feel too :O

I was cutting some bell peppers when I came across this. :) So, do plants feel too?

In all fairness, I first came across such a post at forum. Since then I have been on the lookout for such a similar occurrence :) 

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Can Food... and some Mashed Potatoes

It was one of those days when I did not have much groceries at home. I had to turn to can food for salvation which I'm not particularly proud off! However, I managed to make it 'mine' by adding in some stuff. For the baked beans, I sauteed some garlic and onion in the oil and added a good pinch of dried basil and pepper to the baked beans. I had the odd head of broccoli, so I decided to open up a can of straw mushrooms with that. I just simply sauteed it with some garlic and crushed dried chilli. The only seasoning was salt. 

I also had about 5 potatoes which were starting to grow shoots, so I decided to put them into good use by steaming them and mashed them into a smooth paste. I sneaked in about a tbsp of nutritional yeast, garlic powder, salt, black pepper and some water (I was out of all sorts of milk!) Then I layered it with some cheese slices and baked in the oven until the top browned. Somehow the combination of potato, nutritional yeast and garlic powder evoked a very chicken stock flavour. It was the hit among the 3 dishes :) 

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Not-so-Vegan but Awesome Spinach Pizza

My brother had been bugging me to make pizza for him and I was tired of the same old topping of green peppers, mushrooms, olives and tomatoes. After looking up vegetarian pizza online, I came across this recipe. I used the topping suggestion with my standard pizza crust recipe which is to me fail-proof if you are using yeast that is alive! 

Unfortunately, since I picked up the ingredients at the neighbourhood NTUC, I could not find soy cheese, so had to end up with Mozzarella. Just as luck would have it, I also had sun-dried tomatoes at home that I bought from Mustafa, so I pretty much had all the ingredients. After a quick par-bake of the crust, the topping was piled on and it looked so beautiful with the green spinach leaves acting as a bed for the topping of sunny yellow peppers, sliced broccoli, olives and tomatoes. I just had to snap a couple of pictures, for it felt that I was in some country home baking wholesome pizza for my family! Needless to say, everyone at home loved it and the three of us polished off a pan of wholesome goodness with delicious vegetables!

Fractal Food - Romanesco Brocolli

Hubby and I made a trip to Seng Siong to grab some vegetables. We came across this interesting vegetable that was called the Pagoda Flower. The first time I saw it, I was wondering what on earth it was. It looked so weird and even scary that I felt that it came from outer space! Haha!

Later when we were measuring out some of the vegetables, I asked the sales staff about it and they told me it is something like broccoli and can be cooked normally. Even though it was costly,  I purchased a small one as she told me that the pagoda flower is seasonal. 

After doing an online search, I found out from good ol' Wiki that this is vegetable belongs to the same family as broccoli and cauliflower. It is called fractal food because of its beautiful swirls that end up in a pyramidal shape. One of nature's example of self-similar patterns. It was first grown in Italy but guess where this came from - China! Some of the suggested recipes included steaming it to retain its high Vitamin C content, so that is what I did.

After steaming it for about 10 mins (it was still crunchy), the colour turned from a golden yellow green to a beautiful jade green. It was so pretty and amazing that I started to munch on it. In terms of taste, after steaming it imparted a lovely sweet, delicate flavour very much like cauliflower! I made a sauce for it with oyster sauce, some seasame oil, minced garlic and crushed dried red chilli. I warmed it over the stove and pour it over the broccoli. Yum!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Guest Chef at World Vegan Day

Food #03, a vegetarian eatery has a guest chef programme. I was invited on the 1st of November to be a guest chef to commemorate World Vegan Day. I made green tea, mango, choc-vanilla and coconut-lime cupcakes for this event. However, I did experience a series of kitchen disasters! The first batch of green tea deflated on me! And by the time I finished doing the mango cupcakes it was four in the morning. Since it was made with a pudding centre I wanted to keep it in the fridge. Guess what! In the process I toppled the entire thing and it was four in the morning! I screamed so loud that my hubby woke up. In the end, he cleaned up the huge frosting mess and I sat there stoned and stunned! Without knowing what to do, I decided to sleep and do another batch in the morning! However, it was a fantastic opportunity to meet up with friends and make new friends as well! Thanks peep for coming down to support!

Strawberry Cupcakes with a dash of colour to the frosting (for an earlier order by Food #03)
Vanilla-Choc Marble Cupcake with V-C frosting
Mango Cupcakes again but with a slight variation to the frosting (contains mango pudding)
Green Tea Cupcake with Green Tea Frosting
Coconut Cupcakes with Lime Frosting

Customer enjoying the cupcake
Me (with barely four hours of sleep) with customer
My Lunch - Laksa Pesto Linguine 
My hubby's lunch - Black Pepper Linguine
Some of my amazing friends!
More of my amazing friends! I'm so blessed to have met them :)

Rasam and Rice Lunch

Every South Indian loves rasam. It is a simple, hearty soup that is amazing flavourful and addictive. It is made with spices and tamarind which imparts a distinctive spicy sour taste that is simply awesome. Here I served it with ponni rice (parboiled rice), stir fried soya beansprouts with tempeh, stir fried turmeric french beans and curried potatoes. Of course, an Indian meal is not complete with papadam. I have had request for this recipe from friends of kitchen capers. I'll do it again and measure out the ingredients and post the recipe soon!

Cupcake Order - Oreos, Strawberry and Mango

My friend from VSS, XY was finishing her internship, so she ordered 45 cupcakes for her colleagues. Since she liked fruit based cupcakes, she requested, strawberry, mango and oreos. It was nice baking for her cos' she's a supportive and wonderful person :)

Oreos Cupcake

Mango cupcakes with mango pudding in the centre and mango frosting
Vanilla Cupcakes stuffed with strawberries and a dollop of vanilla frosting

ST Interview Article!

For those who did not get your hands on the article, this is the tiny version of it! Hugely embarrassing un-photoshop picture of me!

Indian Rojak - Vegan Style

I was running out of ideas for dinner and decided to do an Indian rojak for a change. Well basically it was just fried tofu, dough fritters and cucumbers since I did not have the time do other stuff. I think adding steamed potatoes, blanched kangkong and beansprouts will up the nutritional value. I made the peanut/cashew sauce based on estimation and guess work. In all, it was pretty tasty though not high on the nutritional scale!

Cinnamon Rolls

This was for an order that I had on Deepavali. Even though I'm not confident of baking cinnamon rolls, N wanted to try them. After baking the cinnamon rolls, I glazed it cinnamon flavoured sauce. I also made another batch for hubby and myself which was demolished by the next day :) I realised I enjoyed working with dough. It just feels right! 

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Deepavali Cupcakes

I made some cupcakes for MIL for deepavali. I wanted it to reflect the deepavali mood, so I tinted the frosting yellow and sprinkled some hundreds and thousands. The picture above is my favorite. So delicate and pretty :)

Fried Rice - From Grandma to Mum to Me

There is a certain Fried Rice dish that my mum makes with either chilli paste or chilli powder. It contains very tiny chopped potatoes, chopped green vege, tomato and ikan billis. The seasoning is just purely salt. She told me she learnt it from my grandma. So, it is quite special to me. Ever since my parents went to overseas, I have yet to have this dish. So, I decided to do it for lunch one day. I veganised it by adding some tofu for additional protein and just omitted the ikan billis. It tasted as good as the one my mum makes except for the ikan billis taste. Yummy and nostalgic!