Dear Baby

Dear baby,
The day that daddy and mummy found out that we were expecting you, we were so happily surprised that we jumped for joy. You see, daddy and mummy were once told that it could be difficult for us to have children. But God gave us a little miracle, and this little miracle is you.
You were still very tiny. But when you were week 6, you gave mummy a lot of new experiences. Something call nausea/morning sickness. Oh, and the burger craving? I bet you just needed that carbs and protein to build your nerves and cells. We saw you when you were only 7 weeks old in vitro, and saw your heartbeat. The feelings of relief washed over me. Then it’s joy, and a slight increased in belief that you are going to be ok. 
By week 12, Mummy spent more time in the loo than she had ever before. Each time it happened, while it was awful, it also was an reassurance that perhaps hormones were doing its job to keep you safe and healthy. Oh, and a new found respect for all mums out there, especially working mums and mums with few kids having to juggle feeling sick and getting work done. Oh the exhaustion. Mummy wasn’t able to cook as much as she loved to before.. and daddy fed her junk! But it’s ok, he learned how to brew many kinds of soups later on which was nutritious and heart warming. 
I guess I was blessed with a very very understanding boss, who calmed me down when mummy was crying in her office as I was afraid I was not able to do my work properly and have you at the same time. Blame it on hormones, but it was my first taste of the feeling that my identity is going to change. Thankfully, the feeling of sickness passed and I was able to continue to do my best and help other families out there. 
The highlight is our most recent scan. Mummy and Daddy were really excited because we found out that you are… a BOY! We are having a son. How exciting! Much as Mummy love pink and purple cute girl clothing, Mummy is sure we can find you some adorable items as well. 
So baby. You are well loved. Thank you for reminding me how well you are growing with your little kicks, hand gestures and nudges-sorry that I’m not sure which is which yet. Yes, we appreciate it even MORE of all the little things and how such a miracle you are. You are a blessing and a gift. Hopefully, as parents we will be able to grow your potential. 
Love,
Your mummy. 
Ps- I’m so sorry that I have been out of action lately… But I have started cooking again and will return with some posts 😉
xx

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Nonya Chicken Curry

I have grown to really like Poh’s Kitchen. I like how she showcase the beauty of Malaysian and Chinese food to Australia. I like how ABC has all her shows on internet TV (means I can watch it anytime!)

It is also one of the most tedious curries I have made. Woah, the steps! It is actually very easy, but it does takes patience. I took a few short cuts-such as using ground spices instead of whole. Simply because I have some ground spices on hand and that I didn’t want to purchase new whole spices again.

If you are wondering… why am I serving this with Thosai- wrong curry! I had a friend came over to teach me how to make thosai on the day I made the curry! oops. Oh well, I learned how to flip thosai (FINALLY!)

At least the curry was good.

Nonya Chicken Curry


    Rempah/Spice Paste

  • 3 tbs coriander powder
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • 1 tsp fennel powder 

  • 15 dried chillies, deseeded, soaked in hot water, drained and chopped
  • 270g red eschallots, roughly chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 20g belachan, toasted* (place it in the oven with foil for 5-10 minutes till it becomes crumby) 
  • 25g fresh turmeric root

  • 3 tbs coconut cream
  • 6 – 7 sprigs of curry leaves
  • 4 tbs veg oil

  • 1 star anise
  • 2 whole cloves
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 kg chicken thigh fillets
  • 3 potatoes peeled and chopped 
  • 4-5 birds eye chillies, de-seeded and halved lengthways
  • 400ml coconut milk
  • 1 tbs salt
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 100ml coconut cream
1) Toast the ground spices

2) To make the rempah, Slowy grind the shallots, dried chill, garlic, belachan, turmeric root together. Add the spices as well.

3) Heat oil in pot. Sizzle star anise, cloves and cinnamon stick. Add the rempah. Cook it till it smells wonderful and the oil seems to have separated.Add a little coconut milk to make into a gravy. 

4) Add chicken, potatoes and the rest of the coconut milk. Cover and simmer.

5) Taste and add seasoning. Slowly add in coconut cream. Then add the chopped birds eye chills. 


Happy Valentine’s Day to everyone! xx 

I’m submitting my post to Aspiring Bakers #28: Chicken Feast (February 2013) hosted by SSB of Small Small Baker. I have always wanted to join in and this is my chance!!!!


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Bacon Egg Breakfast Wrap

I was watching my colleague having her breakfast one morning. It was a very expensive $15 breakfast wrap. One that she was not very impressed with. Searching for a quick sunday lunch idea, I thought of making a similar version at home.

We do our weekly shopping at Subiaco Station Street Markets. More recently, there was an addition of a travelling butcher from down south. Organic, grass fed and free range meats fresh from the farm! How cool is that. We bought a packet of bacon there for $15- huge! and honestly, once we went organic and grass fed meats, it is hard to go back.

Grilling some bacon, an egg and fresh tomato on hand, I wrapped all the goodies up with some cheese, and drizzle with some mayo and bbq sauce. I had mine “naked” without the wrap and loved it nevertheless.

Bacon Egg Breakfast Wrap 
2 slices of free range wood smoked bacon- grilled
2 eggs fried
1 tomato sliced
2-3 slivers of cheddar cheese
drizzle of mayo and bbq sauce
2 tortilla wraps

Wrapped it all up. Place under the toasted for a few minutes. Enjoy a quick and easy breakfast/brunch/lunch!

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Summer Lemon Lemonade

This actually isn’t my recipe. It’s my hubby. We were hosting a bbq lunch one afternoon and he came out with a drink. Well, actually, it was because our friends gave us a HUGE bag of lemons and we have to use it all up pretty soon.

I love the mix of lime and lemon plus the carbonated feel of the soda water. Thankfully, we bought one without sugar so really, it’s just gas and water. Shessh. We used honey to sweeten the drink.

Summer Lemon Limenade 
2 lemons juiced
1 lemon sliced
4 limes juiced
1 lime sliced
1 litre of soda water
3 tablespoon of honey diluted with a little warm water
Ice
some water

Mix all up. Drink!

To everyone who celebrate Chinese New Year- Happy Happy Year ahead for everyone with blessings and prosperity! 

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Pork Jerky/Bak Kwa

My only preparation for CNY this year. I like to think that I have grand plans every year. This year, I confess that it creeped up on me and I found myself short of time to do much.

This has always been one of my favourite snack on CNY- I love the sweet and savoury aspect of it, the meaty texture, the crisp of the slightly charred bits. At every home visit, people would sometimes exchanged stories about how long they queue up to purchase the best bak kwa (My hubby calls it Long Yok). I think Bak Kwa is in hokkien dialect and Long Yok is cantonese.

I bookmarked a few recipes to reference to. My favourite is still Sonia’s. I reduced the sugar to 50 grams and think the sweetness is just right. However, I think the meat wasn’t pressed thinly enough. While it did have a crisp texture, I felt that it was too thick. Nevertheless, we loved it!

Not without a mini incident…

I was chatting with my grandma on the phone while it was it the oven. I set it to high on grill (which is around 250C), took it out to turn it around and my baking paper caught fire. Lucky for me, hubby was there to save the day, but my grandma found it amusing. I could literally feel her glare on me- just like the first time I cooked in her kitchen. So another lesson learned… concentrate when doing something new!

Using my chopsticks, marinating the meat was easy. Turning it round and round, making sure the meat was all gluey. Thanks to Sonia’s pictures, I knew what to look out for. That’s the reason why I love blogging. It allowed me to learn more about my own culture, food that I grew up loving- I never wish to forget my roots.

And hopefully, this compensate for my lack of preparation (which is what a good Chinese wife should do) for CNY.

Pork Jerky/Bak Kwa
480 grams of pork mince
50 grams of sugar
1 tablespoon of soy sauce
1/2 tsp of fish sauce
1/2 tsp of chinese wine
1 tablespoon of dark caramel sauce
1/4 tsp of 5 spice powder
1/4 tsp of salt
2 tablespoon of honey

Marinate meat with all ingredients with a pair of chopsticks. Turning it till it turns gluey. Place in fridge for a few hours (mine was around 4 hours).

Pre heat oven to 160C. Prepare baking tray- Sonia didn’t use any baking paper. I did. Press meat into tray as thinly as possible. Bake for 15-20 mins. Remove from oven.

Change oven function to grill high or 240C. Snip meat by using a scissors, knife or pizza cutter into pieces. Place it back under the grill. I find that it is charred within 3-4 mins. Turn pieces and place in oven again.

Cool and eat (if you can wait that long).

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