Sunday, September 30, 2007

Beef Pie and Pepperoni Salami

We had beef pies (of course) while watching the Grand Final last Saturday. IMHO, it wasn't really a good game, what with the record-breaking point margin and all. *shrugs*

Back to the pie, it was a Sargeant's Premium Beef Pie as was clearly shown on the top of the pastry. It was tasty and meaty with lots of delish gravy, but I think it will do better with more salt. Great with beer though!

We also nibbled salamis with olives and brie cheese, very very scrummy and moreish!

Yum, I love the chilli flakes on them. Though I must say that this is only an occasional snack due to its high fat content. Lol!

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Recipe: Lou Shu Fan (Rat Tail Noodles)

Lou Shu Fan

Lou shu fan are translated into 'rat tail noodles' because the shape of the noodles resemble the tails of rats. Sounds icky, doesn't it? But don't be put off by the name, as the noodles are truly tasty - chewy and gelatinous in texture.

I was taught on how to prepare this dish by my mother, many years ago while I was young. It reminds me of home now that I'm in a foreign country. I was thrilled to come across this noodles in Footscray Market. Although it cost approximately 20 times than the ones sold in Malaysia, I bought the noodles without thinking twice. It paid off in the end, as the result was a comforting and satisfying dish that brings back flashes of sweet memories.

This is my mom's recipe:


400g lou shu fan/rat tail noodles
100g minced pork
150g choy sum - cut into 3 inches length
3 cloves of garlic - chopped finely
1 tbsp of dark soya sauce
1.5 tbsp of soya sauce
1/2 tbsp of oil
1/4 cup of water
1/4 tsp of sugar
salt to taste


1. Saute garlic in oil until dark golden in color.
2. Add minced pork and stir well for few minutes until the pork is cooked.
3. Add the noodles and the sauces, salt and sugar and stir well until combined. Add water and
let it simmer for 3 minutes.
4. Add the choy sum and stir well. Leave it until the vegetables are wilted and cooked.
5. Serve immediately.

Rat tail noodles

The Royal Melbourne Show

This is the 3rd time I've been to the Royal Melbourne Show, and probably the last time, too, since I'll be heading back to Malaysia for good at the end of the year. Sigh. Oh well, J and I had a marvelous time yesterday and it will be one of our sweet memories of Melbourne.

Ferris Wheel

Even though it's a Tuesday, there's still a big crowd, particularly when the school's holidays are here. There were plenty of rides to keep the adrenaline rushing.


The first stop for me would be the food and wine display, of course. There were about 30-40 food exhibitionists in there, some with free tastings. I had a field day trying out the cheeses, crackers and the memorable fiery chilly sauce which was rated 10/10. Dear god, I was gasping around for air I thought I was chilly-tolerant. Boy, that chilly sauce put me straight up that day.

Wines from the Yarra Valley

The Australian Apiarists

Multi-colored fudge

Next up was the trip to the Arts and Crafts show where they displayed the wide range of cakes, jams and cake decorations from competitors (mostly housewives) around Australia. It was a simply breathtaking sight to behold.


The winner of all cupcakes has got to be g-ood

Jams and Jellies

There were plenty of audible oohs and ahhs at the cake-decorations display area. I was one of the louder ones. *grins* Those were the most amazing piece of arts that I have ever seen, and to think they are going to be eaten! My heart goes out to all of them.

Sugared teddies

SO CUTE. Love the cow.

Outside in the open air, there were plenty of activities and games to keep the public entertained. I walked down a path and saw kids had their face painted using vibrant colors.

Spiderman in the making, hooray!

Cheer up, boy. There's nothing wrong with Cicakman.

Then there were the farm animals in the Animal Pavilion and the show dogs at the Dog Shows.

Cute kids

I let you touch me while I'm sleeping only because you are pretty.

Friendly neighbours

There was also an entertaining circus show in the middle of the showground complete with trapeze, balancing act and acrobatic stunts.

Flying trapeze

And monster trucks and free style stunt bikes in the Coca-cola Arena, which was the best show of the day, I reckon.

Monster truck

And in every nook and corner, there were eye-catching stalls selling showbags - which is the main attractions for the Royal Melbourne Show.

Showbags selling like hotcakes

I noticed that everyone had showbags in their hands, some with trolleys full of showbags. It's like going to the markets - instead of shopping for meat and vegetables, they shop for showbags!

I must say we were one of them - we bought 10 Pedigree showbags for our dogs. There were Schmackos and Denta Sticks which we thought were very good for value. We love our dogs more than ourselves. Lol.

Soft toys

There were lots of soft toys around - some bigger than the kids themselves. You play games or join a lucky draw to win them. I got a Care Bear, yippee!

And after all the hours of walking and shopping, we were hungry and started to look for food. We don't have to look for long though, there were food stalls dotted all around the showground. Throughout the day, we had fish and chips, pancakes with icing sugar and maple syrup, a dagwood dog and soft drinks. Fried food with show just go hand-in-hand together.

I'd be happy too if I'm surrounded by fairy floss all day

Food stall

Best pancakes, ever.

We had a great time and the total damages for that day was $180 for the both of us. Not cheap, but still, another great memory with lots of photographs that comes with it.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Roast Duck with Fragrant Garlic Rice

Home made garlic and ginger rice with roast duck

You didn't think that I made that roast duck, did you? Of course not! Lol. I felt like having roast duck today, but I was feeling really reluctant to venture out of my warm home into the dark and freezing night. And so, I asked J to buy roast duck from our favourite suburb Hong Kong restaurant and I made our own fragrant special rice to go with it.

While he was away buying the duck, I prepared the rice. To make the rice extra special, I made ginger and garlic oil. I simply minced 4 cloves of garlic and a small knob of ginger finely and microwave it in the oven with a little bit of oil until crispy. Before cooking the rice, I simply mix in the fragrant mixture of garlic and ginger with a little bit of salt. (Btw, I normally cook my rice in the microwave, it is really easy and simple to wash up later)

By the time J got back, the kitchen smelled wonderfully of the rice and we were ready to tuck in!

Half of a roasted duck for $11. A bargain, I must say.

Succulent and juicy

There's a little container of sweetish salty sauce that came with the roast duck. It went marvelously well with the fragrant rice and the delicious duck. I also chopped up some fiery red chillies to go with it as being the Malaysian I am, I need heat in my food. Hah!

Our dinner with white wine

That's the sweetish savory sauce in the green bowl. It was quite mild in taste and went really well the the duck and rice.

Pardon the laptop. We were eating and watching TVB series in our living room with the heater on. I must add that the wine kept me warm, too, though it did not really have any impact on J. I am kinda alcohol-intolerant. Haha!

Can you already tell that it was a really enjoyable dinner even though how simple it was? I am a happy gal today.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Recipe: Pasta Carbonara

Penne Carbonara

We had friends over at our home today. And what is a good way to impress your friends at dinner yet not spending hours in the kitchen while missing out having fun and socializing with your guests? Pasta carbonara, of course. It is easy to make, delicious to eat and filling to the tummy.

I know that there are several ways of preparing pasta carbonara. My method is cooking it all under the stove - while watching the heat carefully. You have to be careful when you add the eggs (make sure you turn off the fire first!) as you do not want to end up having lumps of scrambled eggs in your pasta. Yikes!


Recipe (for 4):

300g penne
3 cloves garlic
1.5 cup bacon - chopped into squares
1 cup cream
2 egg yolks
1/2 cup parmesan cheese
1 cup white wine
1 tbsp oil
salt and black pepper to taste


1. Boil the penne following the instructions on the packet.
Meanwhile, fry garlic in oil until golden in colour.

2. Add bacon and fry for a couple of minutes.

3. Pour white wine into the garlic and bacon mixture. Let it simmer for a minute.

4. Add the cream and bring it to a boil.

5. Once it boiled, add the pasta.
Stir well to thoroughly coat the pasta with the cream mixture.

6. Add the cheese, salt and pepper to taste. Stir well. Turn off the fire and add the egg yolks. Stir vigorously to ensure that the yolks do not turn into lumps. You should achieve a creamy texture in the end.

Serve warm

Pasta, anyone?

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Recipe: Grilled Tomato with Bacon on Toast

With a sprinkling of parsley

I love tomato. But I don't like them raw. I like cooked tomato in soups, stews and stir-fries, but I will not eat raw sliced tomato in salads. I find that cooked tomato give so much more depth in taste and flavor compared to the uncooked ones, they are often much sweeter and milder to the palate. Or maybe I am just a weird person. Hah!

Grilled tomato worked out just the way I want it. Juicy, sweet and tangy. Even J who doesn't like tomato raved about it. I think it was the effect from the grill and also the parsley which made it so tasty. It had such a refreshing and cleansing taste to the palate.

Add a rasher of bacon along with a warm toast and you end up having a wholesome and tasty breakfast treat. Yummy!


This is my recipe ( for 2)


2 tomato - sliced about 1/2 cm
2 slices of bread - toasted
2 rashers of bacon
1/2 teaspoon of parsley
1/4 teaspoon of black pepper
salt to taste


1. Place sliced tomato on a tray. Season generously with salt and pepper. Place the bacon on the other side of the tray

2. Grill under High Mode for 4-5 minutes until the tomato and bacon are slightly browned on the edges

3. Place a rasher of bacon on each toast. Arrange grilled tomato on top of the bacon. Sprinkle with parsley. Enjoy them right away.

So good

Monday, September 17, 2007

Premium Rump Steak - Juicy and Meaty

Medium rare premium rump steak


(Coles Supermarket, Meat Aisle)

Bf : What are we having for dinner tomorrow?

Me : Well, we have some beef rendang in the freezer. We could have that. I could prepare
some vege to go with it.

Bf : *looking at steaks longingly* Could we have steaks instead?

Me : But you just had steaks last month!

Bf : Yeah, but that was ages ago. It was 2 weeks since I had one.

Me : Oh, all right. *reach out for premium rump steaks from the shelf*

Bf : *Grins widely*


(The next day at 7pm, kitchen)

Seasoned lightly with cracked black pepper and rosemary

***After 6 minutes on a stove***

Glistening juices

We like ours medium rare

Yummy with buttery potato


A looong time ago, I must have my steaks well-cooked. Wrong move. The consequences are dry and tough steaks resulting me in asking for more gravy to sort of compensate the lack of juices, which did not help, of course. I remember needing to chew a small piece of meat for about 2 minutes and then forcibly swallow with gulps of water in between *shudders*

However, once I try a medium rare steak, I never looked back since. The result is an extremely juicy and succulent piece of meat. And gravy is never needed. In fact, it's best to eliminate strong sauces as the taste of the steak might be overpowered by the gravy.