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Satay Prawns

Satay Prawns (Prawns/Shrimps with Spicy Peanut Sauce)1/2 pound head-on & shell-on medium size shrimps (deveined)
3 tablespoons peanut sauce
Some corn starch (to lightly coat the shrimps)
Oil for deep frying
1 garlic (finely chopped)
3-5 bird’s eye chilies (lightly crushed with a cleaver) – Optional

Ingredients:

 

Method:Lightly coat the shrimps with corn starch and deep fry them until golden and well done. Dish out and set aside on a plate with paper towels (to absorb the excess oil).

 

Heat up a wok and saute the garlic until light brown. Add in the satay peanut sauce and stir a few times. Toss in the fried shrimps and blend them well with the satay peanute sauce. Dish out and serve immediately.

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Satay Peanut SauceIngredients:

 

1 1/2 cup dry roasted peanuts (unsalted)
1 cup water
1 tablespoon sweet soy sauce (Kecap Manis)
1 1/2 tablespoon sugar (palm sugar preferred)
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup oil
1 heaped tamarind pulp (soaked in 1/4 cup water for 15 minutes, squeeze the tamarind pulp for juice and discard the pulp)

Spice Paste:

6-8 dried red chilies (seeded and soaked in warm water)
3 cloves garlic
3 shallots
2 lemon grass (white parts only)
1 inch ginger (galangal preferred)
1 tablespoon coriander powder (optional)

Method:

Crush the peanuts coursely with mortar and pestle or mini food processor and set aside.

Chop the spice paste ingredients and blend until fine. Heat oil and fry the spice paste until aromatic and smell spicy. Add the peanuts, tamarind juice, water, sugar, sweet soy sauce and stir thoroughly. Simmer in low heat while continue stirring for about 3 minutes until the peanut sauce turns smooth. Serve at room temperature with the satay.

Chili Crab

Chili Crab

Ingredients:

1 Dungeness Crab (about 2 lb size)
1 sprig of coriander (chopped for garnishing only)
1 tablespoon of sugar
2 tablespoons of tamarind juice
Salt to taste
2 tablespoons of cooking oil
1/4 cup of water

Spice Paste:

8 dried red chilies (soaked in hot water and deseeded)
1 tablespoon of taucheo (fermented yellow bean sauce)
3 cloves of garlic
1 inch of fresh ginger
2 inches of lemon grass (the white part only)

Tamarind Juice:

5 seeds of tamarind
Water

Method:

  1. Clean the crab and chop it into pieces. Save the green and juicy stuff inside the shell and set aside.
  2. Pound the spice paste with a mortar and pestle or grind them using a food processor. Make sure that the spice paste is finely blended or pounded.
  3. Soak the tamarind seeds in some warm water for 15 minutes. Extract the juice and discard the seeds.
  4. Heat up your wok and add cooking oil.
  5. Stir fry the spice paste until fragant and spicy.
  6. Add the crab and 1/4 cup of water and do a quick stir. Cover the wok with its cover for 3 minutes.
  7. Add the green and juicy stuff from the shell and stir well.
  8. Add in sugar, tamarind juice, a little salt to taste and continue stirring for about 2 minutes or until all crab pieces turned red.
  9. Dish up, garnish with chopped scallions and serve hot.

Cook’s Notes:

  1. If you are not sure how to clean the crab, you should get the Dungeness crab in Asian stores. They usually provide the cleaning and chopping services.
  2. Use a mortar (or other similar kitchen tools) to crack the shells of the crab before cooking.
  3. You can also use this recipe for cooking crab claws. If you do, make sure you crack the claws before cooking so the spices infuse the meat.

Chinese Greens with Oyster Sauce

Restaurant-style Chinese Greens with Oyster Sauce

Ingredients:

Your favorite Chinese greens (I used 6 baby bok choy for my dish)
1 tablespoon oyster sauce (Lee Kum Kee brand preferred)
1 tablespoon water
1/4 teaspoon cooking oil
1/2 teaspoon sugar
2 dashes of white pepper powder

Garlic Oil:

2 cloves garlic (finely chopped)
1 teaspoon oil

Method:

Prepare the garlic oil first by heating up your wok and stir fry the minced garlic until they turn light brown. Dish out and set aside.

Heat up a pot of water and bring it to boil. Add two small drops of cooking oil into the water. Drop your vegetables into the boiling water and quickly blanch them for about 20-30 seconds (depends on the quantity). As soon as they turn slightly wilted, transfer them out and drain the excess water off the vegetables. Arrange the vegetables on a plate.

In a wok, heat up the cooking oil, and then add the oyster sauce, water, sugar, and white pepper powder. As soon as the sauce heats up and blends well, transfer and drench it over the blanced vegetables. Top the vegetables with the garlic oil and serve immediately.

Cook’s Note:

For the garlic oil, the garlic will continue to cook in the oil so as soon as they turn light brown in the wok, you should dish it out. Eventually, they will turn golden brown.

Pan-fried Prawns

Pan-fried Prawns (Fresh Water Prawns)

Ingredients:

6 fresh water prawns (or jumbo prawns or big prawns)
1 clove garlic (finely chopped)
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon rice wine or shaoxing wine
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon chopped scallions
1 teaspoon cooking oil

Method:

Heat up a wok with cooking oil. Drop in the chopped garlic and lightly saute till light brown. Add in the fresh water prawns, soy sauce, wine, sugar and do a few quick stir. Use the wok turner to press each prawn down (pan-frying) for both sides of the prawn. Add in the chopped scallions and serve hot.

Cook’s Note:

1. The wok will get really dry and the prawns might appear burned but it’s fine as it will add that “charred” flavor to the prawns.

Ginger and Black Fungus Chicken

Ginger and Black Fungus Chicken


Ingredients:

1 skinless & boneless chicken breast (cut into strips)
2 inches ginger (peeled and cut into thin strips)
1 teaspoon oyster sauce
1 1/2 teaspoon kecap manis (sweet soy sauce)
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon fermented soy beans (taucheo)
4 pieces dried black fungus (pre-softened in warm water for 30 minutes, then cut into bite-size pieces)
1 1/2 tablespoons cooking oil
1 small red onion (quartered)
2 tablespoons water
1 stalk scallion (cut into 1 inch length)

Method:

Heat up the cooking oil in a wok and stir fry the ginger strips until aromatic. Add in the onions and black fungus and do a few quick stirs. Add the fermented soy bean before adding the chicken strips into the wok. Stir-fry the chicken meat until the color changes, then add in oyster sauce, kecap manis, and sugar. Stir all ingredients together before adding in the water. Add the scallions, do a few quick stirs, dish out and serve hot with steamed rice.

Cook’s Notes:

  1. Black fungus is also called “cloud ear” (云耳) or “wood ear” (木耳).

Rendang (Beef/Mutton)

Beef/Mutton Rendang

Ingredients:

1 1/2 pound boneless beef/mutton (cut into cubes)
5 tablespoons cooking oil
1 cinnamon stick (about 2-inch long)
3 cloves
3 star anise
3 cardamom pods
1 lemongrass (cut into 4-inch length and pounded)
1 cup thick coconut milk
1 cup water
2 teaspoons tamarind pulp (soaked in some warm water for the juice and discard the seeds )
6 kaffir lime leaves (very finely sliced)
6 tablespoons kerisik (toasted coconut)
1 tablespoon sugar/palm sugar or to taste
Salt to taste

Spice Paste:

5 shallots
1 inch galangal
3 lemongrass (white part only)
5 cloves garlic
1 inch ginger
10-12 dried chilies (soaked in warm water and seeded)

Method:

  1. Chop the spice paste ingredients and then blend it in a food processor until fine.
  2. Heat the oil in a stew pot, add the spice paste, cinnamon, cloves, star anise, and cardamom and stir-fry them until aromatic.
  3. Add the /mutton and the pounded lemongrass and stir for 1 minute.
  4. Add the coconut milk, tamarind juice and simmer on medium theat, stirring frequently until the meat is almost cooked.
  5. Add the kaffir lime leaves, kerisik (toasted coconut), sugar/palm sugar, stirring to blend well with the meat.
  6. Lower the heat to low, cover the lid, and simmer for 1 – 1 1/2 hours or until the meat is really tender and the gravy has dried up.
  7. Add salt to taste. If not sweet enough, add more sugar to taste.
  8. Serve immediately with steamed rice and save some for overnight.

Cook’s Notes:

  1. To prepare the kerisik or toasted coconut, just add the grated coconut to a dry wok and stir continuosly until they turn golden brown.