Monday, 22 April 2013

Vegetarian Kunyit Curry


Yes, same set of vegetables from yesterday's Wholewheat Spaghetti & Vegetable Stir-Fry. Only this time they're in an Indonesian Kunyit Curry. 

I received a packet of wet 'rempah' from Lady C before she went away and this is my lunch for tomorrow. Yay!

VEGETARIAN KUNYIT CURRY

Carrots, sliced
Sweet Peas, de-veined
Baby Corn, sliced
Chinese ready-fried Tofu, sliced
Potatoes, cubed
1 packet Kunyit Curry paste
Salt to taste
A little Water

Put a little Water in a wok. Add in the Kunyit Curry paste and fry the spice mix for a few minutes.

Add in Potates and a little more Water. Cover the wok. Add in Water if needed, a little at a time until the Potatoes are cooked through.

Add in the rest of the vegetables and Salt to taste. Stir a few minutes until the vegetables just get tender. Take it off the heat, divide into bowls and serve with rice.





Sunday, 21 April 2013

Is this the start of a healthy diet?


So... my doctor says I'm not so well and need to lose some weight. I have been on a diet of sorts to help me but after I fell sick last week and as a consequence couldn't eat properly for days, I've since yo-yoed back towards my old faithfuls i.e. sweet biscuits, chocolate and rice. 

Yesterday, I decided enough was enough. You see... during the yo-yo period I stuffed myself silly, yet found myself feeling unsatisfied, tired, too full, etc. All the things I had left behind while I was consciously watching my food previously. I didn't want this to go on, so I'm back to watching what I eat. 

I had my swim this morning, which was great but left me hungry. Scoffed two Hazelnut-Nutella Biscuits. Bad bad bad. So for dinner today, I cooked-up some vegetables to (hopefully) off-set the sweeties from this morning. 

WHOLEWHEAT SPAGHETTI & VEGETABLE STIR-FRY

Carrots, sliced
Sweet peas, de-veined
Baby corn, sliced
Chinese ready-fried tofu, sliced
A handful of wholewheat Spaghetti, cooked al dente and drained
Garlic, chopped
Red Onions, sliced
Oyster Sauce
Light Soya Sauce
Sesame Seed Oil
Peanut Oil
Almonds, toasted

First, toast the Almonds in a dry wok. Once done, remove and set aside.

Heat a little Oil in the same wok. Once the Oil is hot and shimmering, saute Onions and Garlic in it for a few seconds.

Add in all the vegetables and Tofu. Stir-fry until for a few minutes. Add a little water every now and then to prevent sticking to the wok. The water will evaporate quickly due to the high heat you're stir-frying on.

Add in Spaghetti and stir through. Again, add a little water to prevent sticking if needed. Add lashings of Oyster Sauce and Light Soya Sauce to taste. Stir through. Lastly, drizzle in a little Sesame Oil, stir through and take the wok of the fire. 

Divide into serving bowls, sprinkle on the toasted Almonds and eat while hot. 



Hazelnut-Nutella Biscuits


I've been ill... and these are my redemption biscuits. The ones to make me feel better after a bout of flu, sore throat and fever. I miss my mother very much during these times and wish she were still around to nurse me to health like in the old days. 

These are not fancy biscuits. They're homey and hit the sweet spot. They may look dry but they're actually the perfect combination of sturdy, crumbly biscuit and ooey gooey Nutella. What can go wrong with Nutella anyway? It is after all the chocolate-hazelnut butter of the gods! 

HAZELNUT-NUTELLA BISCUITS

80g organic unbleached Plain Flour
40g organic wholemeal Plain Flour
30g Ground Hazelnuts
125g Butter, softened
50g Caster Sugar
Pinch of Salt

Preheat the oven to 160 Celsius. Line a tray with baking paper and set aside.

Cream Butter, Sugar and Salt till light and fluffy. Fold in both the Flours and Ground Hazelnuts with a spatula until just combined. The dough will look crumbly, so with clean hands bring the dough together into a ball.

Divide the dough into 16 balls and place on the prepared baking tray. Make indents into the balls by pressing them down with your thumb. The dough may crack at the sides but it's okay.

Bake for 10 minutes and then rotate the trays back to front and bake another 10 minutes for even baking. Remove from the oven and with the handle of a wooden spoon press down gently on the indents again. Put back into the oven for another 5 minutes to set, remove from oven and cool completely on the baking tray.

Once cool, fill with as much Nutella as it will hold. Store in an airtight container on a single level. Do not pile them on each other as the Nutella will not set hard. 

Sunday, 7 April 2013

Happy Easter!


Well, technically it's still Easter-tide until Ascension Day, so I think it's okay to wish everyone a Happy Easter a week late. 

So I am sitting here on my bed at the end of a long day trying to make myself feel great that it's 'Yay' Monday around the corner again and failing miserably. Still, it should be a time for celebration methinks since it's the first time I've done my tax e-filing before the eleventh hour!!

What have I done this weekend? Had a lovely brunch/lunch with some lovely friends at Plan B in Paradigm Mall; signed-up for facials after such a long time; slept, slept and slept; and discovered that I hate using bicarbonate of soda in baking because I can smell it from miles away and it tastes soapy on my tongue. A pity really, because I have a batch of chocolate chip cookies bars which I cannot bear to eat! 

However, I seem to be the only one at home with an aversion to the taste of bicarbonate of soda, so some lucky people in the office will benefit from the chocolate chip cookie bars tomorrow.  

I never thought I'd say this but I think I'm all chocolate chip cookie-ed out! From trying to make small batch chocolate chip cookies, to making the one from Alice Medrich's famous Chewy Gooey Crispy Crunchy Melt-In-Your-Mouth Cookies book, I think I am. From all this I have learnt that bicarbonate of soda is not my friend and I much prefer baking powder as a rising agent as it doesn't seem to leave a soapy aftertaste.

Nutella Chocolate Chip Cookies which didn't quite hit the sweet spot

America's Test Kitchen Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies which DID hit
the sweet spot but didn't look so appealing

I've never had a failed Alice Medrich recipe, and yet her chocolate chip cookie recipe didn't quite hit the spot and they spread like crazy on the baking sheet! I think it's something to do with the temperature here. Next time, I'll have to try them with less butter, more flour and baking powder. Still... there was redemption in her Coffee Walnut Biscuits. They're oh-my-lovely! 

Coffee Walnut Biscuits