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Saturday, January 22, 2011

Ice Ice Baby.. Green Tea Ice Ice Baby

@Sin Ming Cook House / Bakery / Whateva

Truth be told I love ice cream, the smooth soft velvety texture of it sliding down the back of your throat.. ah pure bliss!

I had a container of whipping cream lying unused in the fridge, and with the chili padi not around I decided to make full use of the cream and whip up a batch of some Matcha Ice Cream with the Chili Padi’s xmas present.. the Taurus Ice 1518 my flavor: Matcha (Green Tea).

TaurusIcecreammakerIt looks like a Cylon.. Kinda..

So here’s the recipe for my Matcha Ice Cream:

Matcha (Green Tea) Ice Cream

IMG_0209 

Ingredients

  • 300mL whipping cream
  • 100mL condensed milk
  • 20 grams matcha powder (or as much or as little as you would like)
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla essence

Directions

  1. Whisk the cream with an electric mixer while slowly incorporating the matcha powder*
    • When I made mine I didn’t have matcha powder on hand so I used 4 green tea bags and infused them with the whipping cream over a hot stove
    • Allow the cream to cool and whip until soft peaks form
  2. Stir in the condensed milk and vanilla essence with a spoon.
  3. If you are using tea bags you may want to add some additional food coloring to get your ice cream that soft green that you know and love when you get the green tea in a store.
  4. Freeze in a container for 12 hours or if you have an ice cream maker place mixture into machine and follow your machines recommended instructions

And so there you have it.. Since I didn’t have any mochi on hand I used marshmallows and chocolate bits for my garnish!

IMG_0207Green Tea Heaven 

Bon Appétit – Sidney

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Bulalo – Bone Marrow Soup

@Sin Ming Cook House / Bakery / Whateva

It’s been a while since I got back to my roots and cooked some Filipino food.  One of my favorite dishes when I was growing up with marrow bone soup or bulalo (thanks Anne Nolasco for helping me find the recipe name).  I used to remember mom making this on a cold winters day; armed with a 1/2 filled bowl of rice I’d make them all swim in a sea of sweet marrow bone soup!

Anyways here’s the soup for the Bulao. Unfortunately at the time of me cooking the recipe I forgot to get myself some corn and choko (you can also use potato as my mom does if the chokos are not available).

Bulalo

IMG_0203Bulalo – Comfort Food 

Ingredients

  • 2 Osso bucco pieces (add more if you like)
  • 4-5 Meat Soup Bones
  • 1 onion quartered
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 5 cloves of garlic
  • 1 teaspoon black peppercorns
  • 2 Tablespoon patis (fish sauce)
  • 1 Tomato (chopped)
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 cobs of corn cut into 4 segments
  • 1 choko (chayote) peeled and cubed
  • 3 baby bok choy, leaves separated
  • 5 leaves of Chinese Wong Bok sliced
  • Handful of beans

Directions

  1. In a pot of boiling water place soup bones and osso bucco for 10 mins, drain and remove scum that rises to the surface, then rinse with cold water
  2. Place the quartered onion, tomato, pepper, 3 cloves of garlic,  soup bones and osso bucco in a slow cooker and fill with water.  Simmer on low for 6-8 hours
  3. Add salt to season
  4. Dice and sauté remaining 2 cloves of garlic with 2 table spoons of olive oil in a medium to large soup pot
  5. Add osso bucco and sear
  6. Carefully gradually pour stock from the slow cooker into the soup pot, add corn and potatoes and simmer for 20 minutes
  7. Season soup with salt/patis to taste
  8. 5 minutes to serving add remaining vegetables

IMG_0204  Bone Marrow – Yum Yum Yum!

Of course, sadly it’s not the same as my mom’s but well its good enough to make me smile thinking of my childhood back in Sydney; especially since it’s been raining of late here in Singapore!

IMG_0205Meat so tender, it’s falling off the bone

Bon Appétit – Sidney

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

I Come From a Land Down Under! – Part 2

Various Eats in and Around Sydney, Australia

This is the second installment of my various eating places in and around Sydney.  If you haven’t guessed it by now I’m really into all things good to eat around my home town.. much of which I’ve rediscovered since spending most of my time living in Singapore.

Oh before I forget; I have consolidated most of the places I have eaten to a micro blogging site: Foodspotting.com (http://www.foodspotting.com/lycheeboy) you can revert to my profile and guides for the locations of where and what I’ve eaten.

We were fortunate enough to be joined in Sydney for the second of our trip by two Anne’s from Singapore.  While they were here we made sure we stuffed their mouths with as much Sydney food as we could!

Harry’s Cafe de Wheels – Woolloomooloo Bay Warf

You can’t get anything more “Sydney” than Harry’s Cafe de Wheels.  Ordering gourmet meat pies from a trailer and eating said pie by a wharf overlooking the harbor is indeed priceless!

Harrys Cafe de Wheels

Coupled with the fact that it rained in the area just a few hours before, biting into a warm gooey meat pie topped with chili con carne or mashed peas and potatoes with a flock of greedy sea gulls circling it was the perfect setting to be eating pies!

Bills – Darlinghurst

I’m that last person you would call a cafe person, on most occasions I spend my mornings cooking up a storm in the kitchen.  But when I’m back home in Sydney a visit to Bills is yet another ‘must-do’.  Yes it’s a long drive into the city and parking can be somewhat of an issue but when you’re there, seated inside waiting for your food; the worries of the world pass you by!

Bills - Entrance

Bills food is pure and unabashed goodness.  It’s that simplicity that I believe makes people want to come back again and again but hey I should stop writing and let you see for yourself why I’m so into Bills..

Bills - Drinks

First up we ordered drinks: bills hot chocolate made with Callebaut and a Sunrise drink of orange juice, banana, yoghurt and berries, what a way to start the day.. the chocolate was soft and velvety while the Sunrise drink was a great way to wake up the senses for what was to follow!

Bills - Sweet Corn Fritters

These little puppies (a signature dish at Bills) were something that I’ve not tried before, I was expecting the corn to be soft and over cooked, instead they were still very crunchy and full of flavor, in with the mix of the spinach, tomato and bacon and you had yourself a corn bread type sandwich; yums!

Bills - Ricotta HotcakesI guess you could say the Ricotta Hotcakes is Bills personified, the simplicity of this dish fools you into not expecting much, one bite and you’re taken to somewhere different.  Add the honeycomb butter to the light tasting yet extremely dense hotcake and you’ve got sweet crunchy buttery goodness.

The Australian Hotel – The Rocks

The two Anne’s finally arrived to join us, the first stop was a trip to the Australian hotel at The Rocks for pizza.  Pizza I hear you say.. what’s so unique about the pizzas at this place is that they use meats such as Crocodile, Emu and one of Australia’s national icons: Kangaroo.

Australian Hotel - EatsSitting at the pub on a hot summer day sipping beer on-tap and eating these fantastic pizzas with friends; life doesn’t get too much better than that.

Windsor Seafoods – Windsor

Can you imagine one of the best places I’ve even had fish and chips in Sydney was at least 40km from the sea?  I happened to find out about this place from a good friend of mine here in Singapore.

Windsor Fish n Chips

So there we were waiting for our number to be called and seeing tray after tray of what looked like golden fried goodness my mouth began to water and my heart quickened!

Windsor Fish n Chips - Food And then there they were, battered fish, calamari,pineapple, prawns and of course the chips!  Each piece was fried to perfection, accompany that with a few bottles of moscato and we were in fish and chip heaven!

Aquabar – Bondi Beach

What does one do after a morning of fun filled surfing action at one of Australia’s most iconic beaches?  Why replenish ones stomach by the beach.. well not exactly by the beach, more like across the road.

Bondi - Aquabar

Since arriving back in Sydney this time around I hadn’t quite satisfied my craving for a steak sandwich, so when one of the Annes asked if i wanted to try a piece of theirs I said “sure”!  The chili padi had one of the nicest angel hair pastas accompany that with some hot chocolate and a delicious vanilla milkshake it was the perfect way to spend the day at (and by) the beach.

On a side note.. the surf class was a bundle of fun!

Passionflower – Sydney City

Where do you go when it’s late at night and you have a craving for some weird yet wonderful flavors of ice-cream?  Passionflower of course.  The original outlet was opened at the capitol theatre in Sydney over 10 years ago; testament to the number of loyal followers that it has!

Passionflower

The clientele is predominately Asian; I would take a wild stab that as opposed to their western counterparts their ideal of a night out on the town would be sitting here chilling with friends instead of in club drinking and dancing the night away.

We ordered a mini mountain of 4 scoops, doesn’t sound like much but after a very filling dinner of sad to say ordinary Thai food we were struggling to finish.  As you can see from the picture they’ve got plenty of ice cream to try; things like wasabi and black sesame, all good mind you!

New Years Eve Countdown – Operabar, Opera House Sydney

This was the highlight of my trip to Sydney this time around; for obvious reasons: New Years Eve Fireworks at the foot of the Sydney Opera House and the fact that proposed to the chili padi!

NYE @ the Operabar

The count down at the Operabar is fast becoming one of the ‘must-do’ things in Sydney if you have the money to splurge!  In a nutshell it’s a private party where they serve tray after tray of delicious canapés from the Operabar kitchen and the theme of the party is disco!  You’ve go servers all dressed up in retro, entertainers, it’s just a whole bunch of fun!

NYE @ The Operabar - Food 

Oh did I mention the amount of food that they served?  Although the price of the ticket was a little steep, it’s really worth it going at least once in your life.  You’re at the steps of one the worlds most recognizable structures, looking at another one of the worlds most recognizable structures counting down to the new year while watching the sky illuminated by  by 15 minutes with of fireworks, all while sipping champagne and eating some fantastic canapés.  What more could you wish for?

Chat Thai – Randwick

Time again to visit my favorite Thai restaurant in Sydney: Chat Thai.  I was introduced to this place by some friends of mine, since then I’ve never looked back.  This time around I decided to let the two Annes on the little secret that is good, decently priced authentic Thai food!

Chat Thai - Inside 

Chat Thai’s first shop was set up in an old fish and chips/milk bar, it’s an open concept kitchen that serves some delicious Thai food.  The staff and the cooks are all Thai which i guess is why there a little bit of Thailand in every bite.

Chat Thai - Food

From Chai Yen, Tom Yum, Pad Thai, Roasted Pork, Minced Chicken and Red Duck Curry there was an abundance of food.  Seriously the servings where HUGE, we were all actually struggling to finish what was already on the table.. there was however one last dish to come!

Chat Thai - Lemongrass Snapper

The highlight dish for me has always (and for the meantime, shall remain) the Lemongrass Snapper.  Picture a deep fried fishy in lemongrass with a spicy sweet sauce!  Heaven on a plate is all that I can say, I’ll always make extra room just for this dish!

Bak Pho Hai Duong – Marrickville, Sydney

Psst! Want to know where supposedly one of the best places to eat Pho (beef noodles) in Sydney is?  Apparently Bak Pho Hai Duong is one of them, so following our salivating mouths to Marrickville we went!

Pho Back - Entrance

We were not to be disappointed!  Pho Bac Hai Duong is one of several Vietnamese restaurants nestled within Asian grocery and bread stores that adorn the Marrickville map, the restaurant itself looks a little dodgy, but once you smell the aroma of the Pho you let all you inhibitions aside for you know you’re stumbled upon a great find!

Pho Bac - Rice Paper Rolls

We started off proceedings with some rice paper rolls.  The rolls were fantastic, the skin was firm yet not too thick the prawns cooked just nicely and the sauce to accompany the sauce divine!

Pho Bac - Pho 

And now for the start of the show: The Pho!  Words cannot describe the aroma and the intensity of the beef broth!  the beef balls were tender, very tasty and most importantly very springy.  The slices of beef melted in our mouth; I honestly couldn’t get enough of the stuff.  Honestly this is one place I would not mind driving to again and again to eat!

Kingsleys Schnitzel and Alehouse - The Woolloomooloo Bay Hotel, Sydney

If you’re looking for a place to have some decent schnitzel (breaded pork or chicken) in Sydney, then a trip down to the Woolloomooloo bay wharf is in order!  Across the road from another famous eating place Harry’s Cafe de Wheels lies the Woollomolloo Bay Hotel.

Woolloomooloo Bay Hotel - Chicken Schnitzel

Kingsleys aside from the varieties of beer on tap do mean pub grub, and through recommendation of Ben (my brother in law) this is the place to get some good tasting, no fuss schnitzel!  He wasn’t wrong!  The pork was breaded and cooked to perfection, the meat still juicy and succulent with every bite!  Oh by the way they also do a mean cut of steak if the schnitzel ain’t your cup tea.  All that washed down with a pint or two of beer and well you could almost be mistaken for seeing a Fräulein and an oompa band in the background!

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