Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Chinese Soup for noodles

My latest interest is back to making soups. But it's more about east meets west in developing flavors. I got some pork bones and roasted them in the oven. Instead of just soaking the dried scallops and mushrooms, I squeezed all the water out and fried it before putting in the soup. Interesting - the soup does taste more intense than making it traditionally.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Marinated tomatoes

One of the more interesting appetizers I've creating is marinating tomatoes. The idea first came from Thomas Keller's book - Under Pressure where they made tomatoes sweeter by infusing a sugar solution into cherry tomatoes. I tried but didn't like it and so do my first version - edible bloody Mary. A cherry tomato infused with the vodka, tabasco,lemon juice, Lea Perkins. Fabulous but some didn't like the vodka. So I tried infusing a vinegarette. Worked perfectly but then discovered that the concentration of the solution was extremely important in controlling bursting effect of the liquid when tomato was teen. Too high concentration and the tomato goes soggy. Too low concentration, no bursting effect.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011


I've always liked making abalone.  Dried abalone has never been a challenge as a good abalone is always easy to cook.  However, fresh, live or frozen abalone is a different story.  Abalone has a very bland taste and a chewy texture.  It's very hard infuse flavour into abalone.  A friend gave me this simple recipe where the abalone was soaked in a rich sauce for 3 days, only to bring the abalone to a slight boil for 10 minutes a day.  It was good but the abalone shrinkage was extremely high.  So I got hold of a bunch of fresh abalone, seasoned it with scallop sauce, oyster sauce, sesame oil and vacuumed sealed and threw them in the thermo circulator.   After cooking for 24 hours, took them out and they were spectacular. 

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Yogurt Eggs

It seemed so hard to play with molecular cooking that I simply shoved my molecluar kits in the closet until recently.  Yogurt seemed like an interesting ingredient to play with as it was rich in calcium and could form a film easily.  A bit of honey was added into plain yougurt to make it tastier and then a ravioli was made by placing a tablespoon of yogurt into the setting bath.  The ravioli was cooked for 3 minutes and rinsed in cold water.   I accompanied it with some fresh orange segments and drizzled some honey over it. 

Friday, August 5, 2011

Chinese Salmon vs Western Salmon

At the restaurant, we initially cooked the salmon at 38 degrees but customers kept complaining that it was cold and the fish was raw.  At last, we found that at 10 degrees higher, customers liked the dish a lot and found the salmon very silky.  From time to time, my home guests enjoy this simple dish of slow cooked salmon with olive oil and a lemon zest cooked at 38 degrees and it doesnt feel raw or cold when served as a western dish

Chinese Sous Vide

We've all read a lot about sous viding in western cooking.  So why not try it with Chinese cooking?  I got a hold of a really nice piece of pork belly the other day and marinated it with some five spice powder, soy sauce, sesame oil, garlic and ginger.  After a night of marination, it was slow cooked for 9 hours.  We used the juices to cook it with chinese radishes and chinese bean curd sheet.  The result was an amazing succulent tender pork belly that melted in our mouths.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

My first creations

Perfect eggs for Simon's breakfast.  The eggesd were cooked at 63 degrees for an hour.  Having tried many different sauces for perfect eggs, I finally find that simple is best.  Simple stir fried aspargus with a lightly seared parma ham with the perfectly cooked eggs sitting on top. 

Monday, August 1, 2011

At last a blog for my food

I never thought of creating a blog for my cooking creations until Yim gave me this thought.  Cooking has also been one of my favourite passions and I've always enjoyed creating interesting dishes.  One of my very first experiments was abalone.  It seemed so difficult to cook dried abalones and so I started cooking South African abalones which were affordable a few years ago.  I then took the challenge to make Japanese abalone and the conclusion to a good abalone was simple.  A good quality abalone is fail proof.  And so it's simple - good quality food always create great dishe!