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A couple weekends ago I had an epiphany. I had garupa fish fillet in the fridge, and a pack of curry powder, so why not put them together and see what happens, right?

Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you – fried fish fillet with curry powder.

cover the fish with a layer of curry powder before frying
cover the fish with a layer of curry powder before frying

This dish is so easy to make you could  do it in kemahiran hidup and not mess it up.

Ingredients:

  • fish fillet (any type of fish)
  • curry powder
  • salt
  • cooking oil for frying
  • 1 bulb of garlic
  • petai (optional)

some garlic and petai for garnish
some garlic and petai for garnish

Cooking instructions:

  • apply salt and curry powder to fish fillet (must be dry)
  • fry fish in medium heat for 7-10 mins each side depending on thickness
  • separately, fry chopped garlic to golden brown
  • fry petai for 2 mintues
  • serve while hot!

fried curry fish fillet with petai and garlic
fried curry fish fillet with petai and garlic

So there you go, a simple recipe anyone can try. Fried curry fish fillet with petai. For more simple home-cook recipes, check the KY cooks section.

A couple weekends ago Haze and I spent a better part of our afternoon reorganising the kitchen, throwing out expired stuff, rearranging condiments, sauces, and figuring out where is the optimum places to put pots and pans.

After all the hard work, I had to test run the new and improved cooking environment, so I thought I’d try my hands on a homemade roast chicken.

This recipe is inspired by the version of roast chicken at Graze KL Hilton I tried last year.

the ingredients - chicken, root vegetables, thyme & rosemary
the ingredients – chicken, root vegetables, thyme & rosemary

The three basic ingredients are chicken, root vegetables, and herbs. You also need an oven, and I strongly recommend having a thermometer to check if the chicken’s cooked too.

Ingredients (for 2 pax):

  • half chicken, leave the skin on
  • potato, carrot, leek, mushroom (you can mix and match, chop to bite size)
  • garlic (cut off the top or bottom)
  • fresh thyme and rosemary
  • salt and pepper for seasoning
  • half a cup of olive oil
  • 2 cups of stock or broth (water is a viable option too, I used leftover soup)

cut vege, arrange chicken, simple
cut vege, arrange chicken, simple

preparation:

  • pre-heat oven to 175 Celcius
  • apply generous amount of salt and pepper on both sides of chicken
  • pour some olive oil baking pan (or in my case, an oven safe pan)
  • put herbs on both sides of chicken
  • arrange vegetable and garlic bulb around the chicken
  • pour the remaining olive oil on chicken and vegetable
  • pour 1 cup of stock/broth in the mix

internal temperature of 77 Celsius is just nice
internal temperature must be over 75 Celsius

baking/roasting instructions:

  • place the chicken in oven for a total of 50 minutes (70-80 minutes for whole chicken)
  • after 20 minutes, baste the chicken and vegetable with remaining broth at every 10 minute interval
  • chicken is done after 50 minutes, internal temperature of meat should exceed 75 Celsius
  • Carve the chicken and serve!

the result is a success, might try crispy skin style next time
the result is a success, might try crispy skin style next time

The result is a pretty delicious roast chicken that’s rather tender, there are also enough side dishes to make a complete meal as well. If you include leek in the mix, consider putting it under the chicken to prevent them being burnt.

Oh, the garlic turned out great, if you love garlic, consider putting more than one bulb.

Try it yourself at home, bon appétit! Click for more simple recipes from yours truly.

It’s going to be the year of Horse in a few more days, and like so many Chinese families, reunion dinner is on the menu. So are you going to just watch your mom prepare everything? or are you going to be contributing at the kitchen and come up with at least a dish like a good filial son or daughter should?

Well, if you’re the latter and lacks in the finer skills in front of the stove, here’s a simple lala recipe you can follow that just might make your mom proud.

ingredients are lala, garlic, ginger, chili padi
ingredients are lala, garlic, ginger, chili padi

This is a lala (or any clams) dish with garlic, ginger, and chili padi. Takes less than 20 minutes from start to finish, and is also one of the cheapest seafood dishes you can come up with especially during CNY season.

Here are the ingredients:

  • 1 big bowl of lala/clams
  • 1 clove garlic, chopped
  • 1 inch ginger, stripes
  • 6-10 chili padi, chopped
  • 5 tablespoon cooking oil

fry till the shells are opened, wise to steam it a bit too
fry till the shells are opened, wise to steam it a bit too

cooking instructions:

  • soak lala/clam in salt water for 30 minutes, rinse
  • heat up cooking oil and fry ginger & garlic till fragrant
  • add in lala/clam
  • add chili padi
  • fry till all shellfish are opened, you can use a lid to cover the pot for steaming effect
  • ready to serve

lala with chili padi and garlic
lala with chili padi and garlic

This is a rather simple and fail proof dish, you can also spice it up by adding some Chinese cooking wine or soup stock to give it a more fragrant flavor.

Click for simple recipes from yours truly, and Happy CNY.

During my stay in the US of A for more than 4 years, I’ve came across a few local dishes that were new to me. While there are many famous American dishes such as steak sandwich, clam chowder, good old fashion hot dogs and such that you can find in many restaurants, there are some that for all practical reasons, you hardly get them outside the country unless you make them yourself.

One of these dishes is a party snack called devil’s egg, and I’m going to show you how to make them.

first, make some hard boiled eggs
first, make some hard boiled eggs

I made these for a home BBQ session with the Maldives diving friends and some colleagues a few weeks ago and the reception was pretty good. It would have been better if I didn’t have to substitute paprika with curry powder, but sometimes you have to make do with what’s available in the kitchen.

Anyway, here goes.

Ingredients:

  • chicken eggs (I made 14)
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoon mustard
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • paprika for garnishing
  • 2 tablespoon sweet pickle relish (optional)

remove egg yolk & mix with seasoning
remove egg yolk & mix with seasoning

Instructions for hard boiled eggs:

  • put eggs in a pot of cold water (cover up the eggs by 2 cm), this prevents egg from cracking
  • adding a pinch of salt will allow easier peeling of egg shell later
  • bring to boil
  • cover the pot and turn off heat wait for 12 minutes
  • remove egg and peel the egg shell under cold running water

Instructions for devil’s egg:

  • cut eggs in halves
  • remove egg yolks and place in mixing bowl
  • add mayonnaise, mustard, and pickled radish (optional) to egg yolk, and mix with a fork
  • add salt & pepper to taste
  • carefully fill egg whites evenly with mixture
  • garnish with paprika, and you’re done

mix it back and sprinkle some paprika, serve!
mix it back and sprinkle some paprika, serve!

As this is not a hot dish, you can keep it in the fridge and prepare it earlier before the party starts, best consume within the same evening though.

Enjoy! Check the category list under “cooks” for more easy cooking recipes from yours truly.

One of the activities we participated in while at The Datai Langkawi (see blog post) was a fun session on cooking conducted by the two chefs who are specialized in Thai cuisine at the beautiful hotel.

The session took place at the Thai Pavilion, a semi-open air restaurant that’s built on stilts and situated by the main swimming pool.

learning some tricks from the chef
learning some tricks from the chef

Here are the two recipes you might fine useful to add to your cooking repertoire.

Our first dish was goong phad keemao, or fried drunken prawn. While the name might suggest that this dish involves alcohol, it actually wasn’t the case. Here goes:

Ingredients:

  • prawn (250 gram)
  • fresh cili padi (8 gram)
  • onion (20 gram)
  • tomatoes (20 gram)
  • galangal (20 gram)
  • lemongrass (10 gram)
  • cooking oil (30 ml)
  • garlic (10 gram)
  • kaffir lime leaf (2 gram)
  • thai basil leaf (5 gram)
  • oyster sauce (30ml)
  • fish sauce (15ml)
  • pepper powder to taste

the drunken prawn doesn't use any alcohol, halal version
the drunken prawn doesn’t use any alcohol, halal version

Cooking instructions:

  • heat oil in wok, then add garlic, chili, onion, and stir together
  • add prawn, galangal, lemongrass, pepper, stir till prawn is half cooked
  • add oyster sauce, kaffir lime leaf
  • add chicken stock (or plain water if you don’t have chicken stock) and Thai sweet basil
  • adjust saltiness with fish sauce
  • serve while hot

you can cook the tomyam in either clear or "red" version
you can cook the tomyam in either clear or “red” version

Next is arguably the most famous Thai dish of all time – tomyam gai. We made the chicken version here, but you can substitute with prawn, squid, or other seafood as well.

Ingredients:

  • chicken breast sliced (60 gram)
  • galangal (10 gram)
  • lemongrass (10 gram)
  • kafir lime leaf (5 gram)
  • abalone mushroom (20 gram)
  • tomyam paste (10 gram)
  • fish sauce (10 ml)
  • lime juice (10 ml)
  • chicken stock (150 gram)
  • coriander leaf (5 gram)

Haze, KY, and WeiZhi showcasing our dishes
Haze, KY, and WeiZhi showcasing our dishes at The Datai Langkawi

Cooking Instruction:

  • boil chicken stock with galangal, lemongrass and tomyam paste in small pot (leave out tomyam paste if you want clear version)
  • let the ingredients reduce a little, then add chicken, abalone mushroom, and kaffir lime leaf
  • let cook for another 3-4 minutes
  • season with fish sauce and lime juice
  • add coriander leaf before serving

After the cooking session, we sat down and had our dishes with some steamed rice. There was also some Thai dessert and white wine to complete the course. It was pretty fun and now I do think I should slot in cooking classes whenever I travel to other places. These recipes are pretty easy to follow, I’m pretty sure I’ll make them at home.

Datai was such an awesome experience, I miss it already.

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