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Chinese Steamed Tofu with Dried Shrimp Recipe

Saturday, March 31, 2012 | Labels: , , | 9 Comments »

Silky tofu steamed and then topped with a savoury and fragrant topping of sauteed dried shrimp and crispily golden idea of a perfectly simple dish that goes so well with a bowl of hot steamed rice.  Sometimes, I think eschewing more luxurious ingredients is the way to go - today's feature is a relatively healthy dish with tofu as the star.  Do note though that the dish will not be complete without the crunchy and savoury toppings.  With such simple dishes that calls for such humble ingredients, the quality of the soy sauce used is extremely important and if you have been following this blog for awhile, you may notice that my preference for most of my cooking sauces are from Yuen Chun, a favourite brand of my late grandmother.

Chinese Steamed Tofu

Anyway, back to the dish - for this easy steamed dish, I suggest for you to use the plain tofu i.e. the ones without egg and although I am a huge fan of egg tofu, the latter will cause the flavours to get a little too complicated.  The silky and rather bland tasting tofu is the perfect backdrop for the rather pungent dried shrimp topping and provides a good contrast in texture with every bite.  I do hope you give this a try soon - the ingredients can be found easily in all Asian grocery stores if you live outside of Asia and I hope you'll enjoy this simple dish that is a household favourite of mine.

Chinese Steamed Tofu

Have a good weekend everyone!

This recipe is a feature in my Yuen Chun Recipes, an ongoing project on this blog.

Chinese Leeks with Waxed Duck Stir-fry Recipe

Saturday, March 17, 2012 | Labels: , , , | 7 Comments »

I hope you've all had a good week!  Today's feature is yet another simply stir-fry from my kitchen - Chinese leeks (suin) with savoury waxed duck.  Another extremely easy yet a little different dish perhaps.  Waxed duck is a Chinese delicacy popular during the Lunar New Year and has deep slightly smoky and savoury flavours.  It has been a rather hectic week and as I'm feeling a little under the weather, do excuse the extreme brevity of this post.

Chinese Leeks & Waxed Duck Stir-fry

Remember to use a Chinese steel wok if you can as the wok hei (wok breath) is extremely important for stir-fries especially such a simple one as this.  If you find waxed duck a little too 'exotic' for your liking, do susbtitute with either chicken or pork.

Chinese Leeks & Waxed Duck Stir-fry

Have a good weekend! :)

Soy Sauce Udon Noodles with Pumpkin (Vegetarian)

Sunday, March 11, 2012 | Labels: , | 4 Comments »

It's no secret that I love noodles - seriously I find it hard to live without noodles at least when it comes to food.  Today's feature is a vegetarian version where I used some pumpkin, spinach and enoki mushrooms to some easy soy sauce tossed udon noodles.  I sauteed the vegetables separately with a tiny bit of salt and simply tossed the noodles in some garlic oil, sesame oil and thick caramel sauce.  Add light soy sauce to taste and you've got yourself a bowl of delicious, quick and (relatively) healthy noodles.

Vegetarian Soy Sauce Udon

I recall writing in a previous blog post that I will be going through some changes in my life and tomorrow is the first day of the (positive) change!  I am quite excited yet nervous at the same time but of course I am very thankful that things have worked out well.  I apologise if I sound cryptic but I just wanted to thank all of you for your kind words of support and hopefully you all continue to enjoy my blog.  Have a great week ahead!

Vegetarian Soy Sauce Udon

This post is part of my series in the Yuen Chun Recipes, an ongoing project on this blog.

Popular Chinese Dishes and Food Photography...

Thursday, March 08, 2012 | Labels: , | 8 Comments »

You know what, sometimes I really don't know what to type for a blog post so I think I'm beginning to understand the beauty of Wordless Wednesdays and the like! :O.  Anyhow, I digress - for today I want to share some of my latest food photos with you and also perhaps share my opinion (I won't say advice or tips) on food photography.  If you told me a year ago that I will be so passionate about food photography/ styling I would say that you must be joking.  This blog has opened up a whole new world for me which I am most grateful for and being a Getty Images Artist has also spurred my passion for photography. 

Please see below for my thought process for some of my latest photos:

Cantonese roast duck, I wanted a very old-style rustic Chinese presentation for this so I chose a dark theme and used my trusty bottle of Wujiapi (Chinese wine) as a prop.

Cantonese Roast Duck

 Teochew Style Steamed Dumplings - I wanted to use a Chinese tea pot in the back as I thought the photo needed a bit of height in the background but I could not find my tea pot quickly so I used a steel canister for keeping tea leaves instead.
Teochew Chinese Steamed Dumplings

Traditional Chinese breakfast of you tiao and dried scallop congee - again an old-style traditional Chinese setting I was going for.  The photo did not look right at first without the little piece of you tiao you see in the bowl of congee in the foreground.  I thought the composition came together better with that little touch.
Traditional Chinese Breakfast - You Tiao and Dried Scallop Congee 油条和瑤柱粥

Here's my summary of what I have learnt on food photography from the day I started this blog (oooh, totally cringe-inducing when I see my old photos now) until this point.  I hope you will find my experience useful and the best thing about styling and shooting food (when it's not a product shoot) is that you can let your creativity take free rein and have so much fun!

Stir-fried Water Spinach (Kangkung) with Fu Yu (Fermented Beancurd)

Sunday, March 04, 2012 | Labels: , , , | 8 Comments »

Water spinach or better known as kangkung in South East Asia is a kind of swamp vegetable with a hollow stalk and is popularly cooked either with fu yu (Chinese fermented beancurd) or belacan (shrimp paste).  The trick to cooking these vegetables is to make it quick and do not stir-fry the vegetable for too long in the wok as these vegetables turn yellowish pretty quickly.  Fermented beancurd or 'fu yu' is popularly referred to as Chinese cheese where the texture is slightly softer and the pungency may be overwhelming for first-time tasters.  However, once you get used to it - this savoury and flavourful condiment will be a constant fixture in your kitchen.  Nevertheless, do note that as the level of salt is very high in this, a little bit goes a long way.

Stir-fried Water Spinach (Kangkung) with Fermented Bean Curd

For added heat, I added some bird's eye chilli peppers but you can tone down the heat by using red chili peppers instead.  The vegetables are first blanched quickly until wilted to minimise their time in the wok and do note that these vegetables are best served hot.

Stir-fried Water Spinach (Kangkung) with Fermented Bean Curd

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