Posts RSS Subscribe to Feed
Sign Up for Latest Recipes!

Chawan Mushi Recipe (Japanese Steamed Egg Custard - 茶碗蒸し)

Sunday, May 24, 2009 | Labels: , , , , | 12 Comments »

I have always been a huge fan of 'chawan mushi', which literally translates to 'tea cup steam' - the egg custard is savoury instead of sweet and is traditionally served as an appetizer at Japanese meals. The texture of the egg custard is much lighter than that of its' Western counterparts due to the absence of heavy cream and milk.


For an 'ideal' cup or bowl of chawan mushi, the custard has to just barely be set, and should be silky and light in texture, a 'holey' appearance is a definite faux pas. The egg custard is simply a mixture of lightly beaten eggs and bonito stock seasoned with some soy and sake. The ingredients used in the custard allows for a lot of creativity, this time I merely used crabsticks, mushrooms and green onions. It is customary to have chicken, shrimp, mushrooms and gingko nuts in the chawan mushi - however, as always, do improvise and tweak the recipe to your liking.


This is a very easy dish to make at home, this was my first attempt as well and you just have to remember not to overcook the steamed egg (much like Chinese steamed egg), do not overload the cups or bowls with ingredients (no more than 1/3 of cup/bowl) and to beat the eggs lightly so as to lessen the bubbles in the mixture. The silky smooth and flavourful egg custard was a delight to my senses - try it at home, it's not difficult I promise!

Cod Fish Soup Recipe

Saturday, May 23, 2009 | Labels: , , , , | 2 Comments »

Being a huge fan of soups, I felt like having a piping how bowl today but did not have the patience for my usual slow-boiled soups that require a boiling time of at least 4 hours. I decided to make fish soup - most of the time fish used in Chinese soups is first fried with ginger to eradicate the 'fishy' smell in the soup. This soup is a result of my experiment today and I am quite pleased with the results, easy and definitely tasty.


The soup only required about 1 hour of boiling and I just used ingredients that were available in my fridge, it's always fun to experiment with cooking when you have the inclination and always good too to use up ingredients in your fridge. I have to say that my fish soup did not taste 'fishy' at all, the taste of the fresh cod married well with the onion, corn and shitake mushrooms. Do give this a try when you feel like having a different and less cooking time kind of soup. This soup will be perfect served with rice.

Luncheon Meat (Chinese spam) Fried Rice Recipe

Tuesday, May 19, 2009 | Labels: , , , , , | 8 Comments »

What do I cook when I want to have something quick, satisfying, easy and most importantly, delicious? I know that not everyone is a fan of spam - but the tins of spam found in regular i.e American grocery stores are quite different from its Chinese counterparts. I prefer to refer to spam as luncheon meat - this is what it is usually called in Chinese. The word spam just does not conjure up appetizing images and is very misleading as luncheon meat is very tasty and is used all the time in authentic Chinese cooking, in sandwiches, noodles, rice and more.


So, although luncheon meat is extremely tasty, I still limit my intake due to obviously the high level of preservatives involved. Today I feature my quick recipe of luncheon meat fried rice especially for those of you who don't have that much time in the kitchen (or just the plain lazy ones! hehe - I am guilty of this too, time to time!). You can opt to replace the luncheon meat bits with bacon or ham bits if you so prefer.

Tip: For fried rice, it is better to use Jasmine long grain rice - the short grains like Japanese rice gets a little too smushy.


Chinese Periwinkle (Snail) Soup Recipe

Saturday, May 16, 2009 | Labels: , , , | 7 Comments »

I have been planning to make some slow-boiled Cantonese soups for a while, and I initially decided to feature winter-melon soup today, however when I checked the melon today, it had already gone bad. So what was I to do, as I already had the spare ribs boiling away merrily on the stove? I remembered that I bought some cooked periwinkle meat and had them in the freezer, so I decided to use that instead and added some wolfberries (gei zi) and threw in some honey dates that I had handy.

Periwinkle is actually a species of snails and are a group of marine snails. Periwinkle meat is very chewy in texture, not too unlike abalone and clams. The periwinkle meat provided a sweet and briny taste to the soup - perfectly complemented with more 'regular' Cantonese soup ingredients like the honey dates and the wolfberries. I am so glad that I did not give up and just threw away my whole pot of spare ribs soup.


The Cantonese also love to stir-fry periwinkle meat with black bean sauce and red chilli peppers which is a popular fiery dish especially in Hong Kong where these snails are cooked on high heat with the shell intact. One has to dig the meat out with either toothpicks and other more inclined diners will suck the meat out of the shells.

Being a huge fan of Cantonese slow-boiled soups, I am ecstatic that I 'discovered' a new soup recipe for myself. As always, do not add water during the boiling process as the resulting watery taste will be impossible to eradicate even with copious amounts of salt - you will just end up with some tasteful salt water!

Braised Chicken Feet with Mushrooms and Ginger Recipe

Saturday, May 09, 2009 | Labels: , , | 11 Comments »

I have always been a huge fan of chicken feet dishes - I did hesitate to feature these as I know the sight of chicken feet may be rather too 'exotic', Asians included. I succumbed finally today to my cravings for a good dish of braised chicken feet however with mushrooms following my trip to San Francisco last weekend. I have to thank my lovely girlfriends, C, K and W in San Francisco for making my stay as seamless as possible! When we visited the dim sum restaurants in San Fran, I did sample one of my must-order dishes, 'phoenix claws' or simply chicken feet braised in red sauce - after sampling this, it reignited my craving for another great chicken feet dish that is today's feature.


Chicken feet are actually very high in protein and really taste sumptious if you can get over your 'ewww' factor. I have always loved eating chicken feet since I was a child so this is not a factor for me obviously - but preparing chicken feet is altogether a different feat (pun intended!). Unluckily for me, I bought some chicken feet without their claws chopped off, so if you decide to be adventurous and try this dish, do try to search for those with the claws already chopped off - makes the preparation much easier!


Ginger and mushrooms are the perfect complements to this dish and the chicken feet are first deep-fried, then cooked slowly i.e. braised in a claypot until soft allowing all the sumptious flavours of the seasonings to seep into them. I did not add star anise to my recipe as I am not a big fan of the flavour but if you like the flavour, you can add 1 or 2 to the dish. The secret to softening the chicken feet is to add a little rock sugar (pictured below) into the mix. This is an easy home style Chinese cooking dish that you should sample at least once!

Noodles with Spicy Ground Pork Recipe

Thursday, May 07, 2009 | Labels: , , , | 8 Comments »

ese noodles are delicious and extremely easy to whip up in your kitchen. I used whole grain udon noodles in the interests of lower calories - ground pork is very versatile and I would always have some in my freezer. You can 'dress' the ground pork up or down with some different twists in ingredients. Today I chose to add a bit of spice to my ground pork and so I added some bird's eye chilli peppers and a small dash of curry powder to the mix.

TIP: I always have ginger, garlic, shallots and green onions in my fridge at all times. You can also chop up a lot of green onions and freeze them and use when required since green onions tend to go bad quite fast.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
Creative Commons Licence
Smoky Wok by Smoky Wok is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License.
Based on a work at
No content from this website including images, recipes, writings may be reproduced without prior consent from the author.

Smoky Wok

Smoky Wok

Smoky Wok