Saturday, September 22, 2012

Teriyaki Chicken Rice Burgers (Sliders)


There are people who don't like Vegemite, a minority of the population detest peas, and then there are those (like me, or is it just me?) who aren't particularly fond of beetroot. But I bet everyone (by that, I mean most people in general) loves teriyaki sauce. It's like a sweet soy-based barbecue sauce that goes with almost anything. The kids in particular enjoy having it with either grilled salmon or chicken, served with steamed rice. This time, I decided to make mini teriyaki chicken burgers (sliders) using round dinner rolls that I bought from the Vietnamese bakery. The size of these rolls are ideal for little hands and it makes me beam with joy when the kids ask for seconds (they love 'em!). These buns are actually really good, because they are similar to the ones used for Vietnamese pork rolls, which have a thin and flaky crust on the outside, with a light and fluffy interior.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Crispy Polenta Chips with Parmesan and Rosemary Salt

Ever since Jamie's Italian opened a branch in Sydney, I've only been there once, with three other friends. I had the Buffalo Ricotta ravioli with lemon and mint, which in all honesty, I thought was a rather confusing dish because as I was eating it, I kept tasting Lemon Curd Tart, and wished it was served as a dessert instead. If it was intended to be a main-and-dessert all in one, it certainly achieved its purpose. I suppose we had higher expectations for the food, as we found that the other mains were either underseasoned or lacking in flavour (we must have caught the chef on a bad day). That explains why I never went back again. Well, not until Ms L told me that the crispy polenta chips at Jamie's Italian were very, very good. I did want to go back just to try them, but the rest of the girls weren't really keen on going back just to have a small bowl of overpriced chips.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Kanitama-don (Crab Omelette on Rice)

Kanitama-don is basically a Japanese-style "egg fuyong", comprising an omelette of crab meat served on a bed of rice, and topped with a soy-based gravy. I first tried this dish in a Japanese restaurant a few years ago, and was taken by surprise by what was a huge mound of an omelette sitting in a pool of gravy on a large plate. I suppose I was expecting it to be a little more colourful and artistic in presentation, like typical Japanese cuisine. For a moment there, I thought they got my order wrong! Well, never mind that I was  having "egg fuyung" while my lunch partner enjoyed her steaming hot bowl of ramen. I LOVE eggs, and I do love a good omelette, especially when it comes with gravy, and so I was quite happy and contented with my meal that day and was already thinking of ordering it again next time. Well, except that I didn't see it on the menu anymore after that, and that meant only one thing - I have to make it if I want to eat it.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Deep-fried Snapper with 3 Flavour Sauce (Thai-style)

If you've been following my recent posts, you'll know that I've been coming up with "copycat" recipes for some of dishes served at Sailors Thai. This time, I attempted to prepare the deep-fried snapper with three flavour sauce that everyone at our table of ten was raving about. As we ordered only one of each item from the menu, by the time it was passed down to our end of the table, the fish was almost mangled beyond recognition. Okay, perhaps that's an overstatement. Fortunately though, the fish head appeared to be intact, and surprisingly, nobody took the best part - the cheek! If I was having fish with my family (or relatives), the cheek would definitely be the first thing to disappear.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Snow Peas and Asparagus in Oyster Sauce

In my previous post (Grilled Beef with Charred Tomato and Chilli Sauce), I wrote about my visit to Sailors Thai where I had the luxury of savouring an array of creative and exotic Thai dishes and was simply enamoured by the overall gastronomic experience. I attempted to make a mental note of how each dish tasted so that I could recreate the same at home if I ever had a craving for it. And so, this post features a very simple recipe for delicious stir-fried vegetables in oyster sauce. In the menu, it was actually stated as "stir fried broccolini and sugar snap peas with oyster sauce", but they looked more like asparagus than broccolini, and so I've used asparagus in my recipe here. How timely it was that Ms AC received a bag of snow peas from her neighbour who just harvested them from the backyard, and she brought some to the office for me!

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Thai-style Grilled Beef with Charred Tomato and Chilli Dipping Sauce

The inspiration for this dish came from the fabulous dinner I enjoyed at Sailors Thai a few nights ago. There were ten of us and we must have ordered about half of the entire menu. Everyone was ooh-ing and aah-ing over the myriad of dishes that were a fusion of contemporary cuisine with traditional Thai-style flavours, served in a fine dining setting. I loved every single dish we ordered, with the exception of the dessert platter which was quite a let-down considering that there are so many other Thai desserts I can think of that should have made the menu. Anyway, that was soon forgotten by everyone after a few glasses (and bottles) of dessert wine (we had the Botrytis Semillon which was wonderfully sweet and intense with a pleasant finish).