Monday, 30 August 2010

Chilli Crab

This is the last bank holiday weekend for 2010, therefore no more holidays till Christmas period. One have to make full use of the long weekend to get outdoor especially now we're approaching the late summer. I joined an outing to Great Yarmouth, a typical British seaside town with my friends and colleagues. Even though it's just an hour and a half away, I have yet to explore this seaside town by myself. So it's a good opportunity to join in the fun and if courage took hold of me, I might try to swim in the North Sea ( brrrr...... even the thought of it, send chill into my bone ... hehehehe).
We're given good weather to start with (sunny blue sky and slightly on the chilly side-but hey I can't's typical of North Sea climate this time of the year). This seaside town is quite quaint, dotted with lots of fish and chip shops, restaurants, shops, market etc etc. Too bad I didn't bring my DSLR with me, as I don't want to risk my camera when I have a friend who wanted to push me into North Sea :-) .
I ventured to the town market to see what they've over here especially the fresh seafood. I saw plenty of Cromer crabs on sale, an usual treat during summer months. Of course I prefer the mud crabs, but here they do Cromer crab at a fraction of price compared to supermarket and it's pretty fresh (over here they normally sell crabs which has been pre-cooked, you hardly ever find live crab in the market over here). So I decided to buy 4 whole crabs. Singapore Chilli crab or black pepper crab? ........ scratching my head..... :-)
I decided it shall be the famed Singapore chilli crab .....

Singapore Chilli Crab
Ingredients (serves 2)

  • 2 whole crabs - washed, cleaned and chopped to different segments
  • 2 tbsp of chopped ginger
  • 3 cloves of chopped garlic
  • 1 shallot finely chopped
  • 5 red chillis- finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp of sambal (optional)
  • 1 cup of chicken stock
  • Sauce-4 tbsp of tomato ketchup, 2 tbsp chilli sauce, 1 tbsp sugar, 1 tbsp oyster sauce, 1 tbsp lemon juice, salt to taste, mixed well
  • 1 egg lightly beaten
  • Spring onion or corriander for garnishing
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  1. If you're using fresh crab, wipe dry, coat it with some corn flour and quickly deep fry for 30 seconds on high heat. Removed. For me my crab has been pre-cooked therefore I skipped this step.
  2. In a wok, heat the vegetable oil. Once it's hot, fry the shallots, garlic and ginger until fragant-take care not to burnt them. Add the chopped chilli and sambal to sizzle.
  3. Add the crab and stir fry for around 2-3 minutes on high heat. Then add in the sauce and continue to stir fry. Add the stock too. close the lid and let it simmer for 2 minutes. Then add in the eggs and continue to stir until the egg set. Off the heat. Garnish with spring onion/corriander.
  4. Dish out onto plate, served with rice or Chinese bun.

Monday, 23 August 2010

Summer Salad : Grilled Nectarines

There are so much to buy from the market, I couldn't resist to buy back some juicy plump nectarines. One of my favorite fruits, so juicy, sweet and taste a bit like mango, well almost.
So I thought of grilling the fruit and mix them with some homegrown salad, dress with balsamic vinegar. There you go a healthy lunch, simple and refreshing.

Summer Salad : Grilled Nectarines
Ingredients (serves 2)
  • 2 nectarines - ripe and still firm
  • handful of lollo rosa salad leaves
  • some cherry tomatoes
  • some fresh mint leaves
  • some grated lemon zest
  • some grated parmesan cheese
  • dash of black peppercorn
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • dash of sea salt
  • 3 tbsp balsamic vinegar + 1 tsp sugar- boil over hob to reduce the amount by half as it thickens.
  1. Slice the nectarines. Place over grill pan and grill about 4-5 minutes on each side on high heat. You'll have nicely grill mark on nectarines. Remove and set aside.
  2. Place the nectarine, tomatoes, salad leave, chopped mint leaves in a mixing bowl.
  3. Add all the other ingredients and mixed well with your hand. Set aside.
  4. Serve on plate as starter with toast or baguette.
Simple and nice.....

Tuesday, 17 August 2010

Cheese stuffed burger

I've been counting that this summer, I have attended quite a few BBQ summer party over at friends. Indeed I've shy away from the fast food burger chain like Mc Donalds, Burger King during this summer as I realized homemade burger tasted so good, better still if you could grill it over the BBQ. As I'm hoping for Weber BBQ gas grill to be presented to me , I can only be contended grilling it with my lovely cast iron grill and my Neff oven, result is still good :-)
So I decided to make do with the leftover minced beef and some gorgonzola cheese hoping it will turn out lovely. Cheese stuffed burger.....anyone interested out there?

Cheese stuffed burger
Ingredients (make 2 burgers)
  • 330-350 gm minced beef 9preferably with 80% lean and 20% fat)
  • 60 gm Gorgonzola cheese
  • 1/2 tsp grated nutmeg
  • 1-2 tsp of salt-or to taste
  • 1 medium white onion-finely chopped
  • 1 egg
  • 2-3 tbsp bread crumbs
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • dash of black pepper
  1. In a mixing bowl, add all the ingredients except gorgonzola cheese and give a good mix with your hands. Form 2 patties.
  2. Shape the Gorgonzola into 2 balls.
  3. Wrap the patties over the cheese ball. If you prefer you can coat the burger patties with chopped taragon leaves.
  4. Set the burger to rest in the fridge for at least an hour before you grill them.
  5. You can use oven at 160C to cook for 30minutes or over the grill pan for 20minutes or so. Please note that the cheese might leak out during grilling. Therefore I prefer to oven baked them for 25minutes, and finally subjected them to grill pan for 2 minutes each side.
  6. Serve with salad, cucumber, onion and tomato over white bun. If you prefer you could actually add guacamole as sauce over the burger......rather than the usual tomato sauce.
One bite and the runny cheese oozing out ............. Burger will never be the same ..... :-)
Delicious..... and I throw in some homegrown salad/tomato too.

Pictures from my garden as usual.....

Monday, 2 August 2010

Sit down and relax with egg sandwich

I have not been able to blog for the last 3 days. Quite frustrated when one's computer been infected by viruses and worms. Luckily, I have a good friend whom I can rely upon to be the worm-buster. Thanks to my techie and not so nerdy friend, my computer is up and running again.
As a keen gardener, July onwards is time to sit down and relax and enjoy the spectacular display of beautiful summer flowers in the garden. And those days of hard labor in the garden in the early months had been handsomely rewarded.

Yes, it's also time for afternoon tea party in the garden or in the conservatory. I must say a tradition that is truly English and one could easily embrace especially in the summer months. I've few friends over last Saturday [quoted: they cycle a long way to my house] for this delightful tea party in my little conservatory that overlook the little back garden. I hosted a full tea party where the menu consist of finger food that is savory, sweet and desserts. Sit down and relax over some egg sandwiches, cooling cucumber sandwiches, freshly baked mini sausage rolls and not forgetting the delightful summer fruit tarts over a nice cup of freshly brew tea plus some gossips. I will post here the simple to make egg sandwich recipes.

Egg sandwich
Salad cress
  • 3 hardboiled large eggs
  • 1.5 tbsp mayonnaise (I use Hellmans brand)
  • sprinkle of freshly ground black peppercorn
  • handful of salad cress
  • 6 slices of bread of your choice
  • vegetable spread/margarine
  1. Mashed the eggs with fork. Add in mayonnaise, black peppercorn. Mixed well and set aside.
  2. Take 3 slices of bread and stacked them up, remove the crust. Repeat for the next 3 slices.
  3. Spread margarine on the bread.
  4. Add the salad cress into the egg and mix. Divide the egg fillings into 4 portions.
  5. Spread one portion on every 2 slices to form 3 tier sandwiches.
  6. Use a bread knife to slice the sandwich into 4 finger size bites.
  7. Arrange nicely onto a plate and decorate with some salad cress.
And indeed it was a delightful thing to enjoy on a nice afternoon............

Enjoy the nice pictures from my garden with it's fair share of lovely butterfly and bumble bees

Cone flower or enchinachea