One-pot pasta – with sausage and caramelised onions


Source: domestic goddess wannabe

Minced garlic
Minced onions
Sausages/luncheon meat
Red peppers (omitted this)
Cream (I used butter and milk instead)
Chicken stock

Heat up pot, add some oil and fry the meat till fragrant. Remove and set aside.
Fry garlic and onion till soft. Add the peppers and fry.
return the meat to the pot. Add in the stock, deglaze the pan, bring to a boil.
Add the milk/butter
Add the pasta and boil till al dente.
Stir in the caramelised onions.

Season with some black pepper, shaved cheese, chilli flakes. Serve!

-Use some bacon instead of sausages/luncheon meat so that there is still some smoked flavour. Substitute the main meat with chicken
-use fresh mushrooms instead of peppers. Or maybe yellow capsicums as those are sweet? Stir in halved cherry tomatoes just as the pasta is done? Add broccoli florets in the later half as the pasta boils?
– use seafood stock for a seafood version, but the meat has to be added back only towards the end.
– time taken to cook the pasta is about right to cook the caramelised onions on the side.


Caramelised onions

Onions sliced thinly
Sugar 1 tbsp

Cook on med-low heat till onions are soft and brown, about 15-20 mins.

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Braised pork rib noodle


Serves 4

1kg pork ribs
1 carrot
Shanghai greens

Coriander root, a few stalks of coriander
Spring onions

Chu hou paste
Chinese cooking wine
Dark soy sauce
Light soy sauce
Sesame oil
White pepper
Cinnamon stick (1 inch long)
Star anise
Rock sugar

Noodles (mee soya is nice)
Chilli sauce
Fresh coriander for garnishing

Season the pork ribs and set aside.
Heat up pan, add cooking oil, add in the aromatics and fry till fragrant.
Add in the pork ribs and sear, till it turns a nice golden brown (need not be cooked thoroughly)
Deglaze the pan with some water.
Line the bottom of a clay pot with the carrot pieces, and the green parts of the spring onion and any excess coriander leaves
Transfer to clay pot for braising. Add the rock sugar to taste.
Braise for about 40min to an hour


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Paper wrapped chicken


This is another dish that can be prepared in advance, which makes it ideal for weekday dinners. I’ll marinade and wrap up the chicken pieces on Sunday, in preparation for Monday’s dinner where I’d just need to pop it into the oven while I get the other dishes ready.

– The parchment paper helps the chicken to retain its moisture as it cooks.
– This dish is typically fried but grilling it in the oven works as well.
– I like to add mushrooms to the chicken as an extra tasty treat. The mushrooms add some depth to the flavour while soaking up the marinade beautifully.
– Grated ginger can be added to the marinade too!

Chicken pieces
Soy sauce
Dark sauce
Oyster sauce
Sesame oil
Five spice powder
Maggi seasoning
Tapioca flour
Dried shitake mushrooms
Parchment paper (to wrap up the chicken pieces)

Soak the mushrooms to rehydrate them, then cut them up into thin slices. Add them to the chicken pieces (I usually use midjoint wings but bone-in pieces or cut up pieces of deboned chicken legs work well too) and add the seasonings. Mix well and leave the chicken to marinade overnight in the fridge.

Cut parchment paper into pieces. On each piece of parchment paper, place a piece of chicken and a few mushroom slices, then wrap it up into a little parcel.

Bake in oven at 200c for about 20 mins.

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Potato patties

Was looking for recipes for potato dishes cos the little one loves potato, so tried making potato patties (bergedil). They were relatively easy to do, just 4 ingredients – potato, shallots, Chinese celery and egg. 3 medium sized potatoes yielded 8 of these little babies.

Some recipes called for deep frying the potato before mashing, which was what I did. I think boiling the potatoes would have been fine too. I’d just stick to boiling the potatoes the next time I make them.

The patties are tasty and delicious, and can be made ahead of time. Recipe is a keeper!

Holland potatoes
Fried shallots
Chinese celery, minced
Salt and pepper, to taste
1 egg, beaten (to coat the potato patties before frying)

Boil the potatoes, mash them up and mix in the shallots and minced Chinese celery. Add salt and pepper to taste. Form into little patties, coat with egg and fry.

The little babies before frying:


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Tish Boyle’s hot milk sponge cake

The light airy crumb of this cake caught my eye when I first saw it. And the name… a hot milk sponge? Mmm… That conjures up thoughts of a sweet, milky cake, something like the condensed milk cake by Pichet Ong, but with a soft light texture. I bookmarked the recipe immediately.

I had some reservations when I went through the recipe, and was wondering if it would turn out something like a genoise sponge although the addition of milk may moisten and lighten the cake crumb a little. So I decided to scale the recipe down by a third, and make it in my 6 inch round cake pan.


Hot milk sponge cake
Adapted from recipe by Tish Boyle

90g cake flour
3/4 tsp baking powder
50g salted butter
80ml milk
2 eggs
80g sugar
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 175deg. Grease and flour a 6 inch round cake pan and set aside.

Sift flour and baking powder together, twice. Set aside.

In a saucepan, warm up the milk and butter, until the butter has just melted. Turn off the heat.

In a mixing bowl, whisk the eggs till foamy, then add half the sugar and turn up the mixing speed to high. After whisking for about 2-3 minutes, add the remaining sugar and vanilla extract and continue whisking until the egg mixture is pale coloured and leaves a thick ribbon when the whisk is lifted.

With a spatula, fold in one third of the flour mixture into the egg mixture. Fold in the remaining flour in two additions.

Heat up the milk/butter mixture, until it barely reaches a boil and pour it all at once into the flour and egg batter, fold in until just incorporated.

Transfer to cake pan and bake for 20-25 mins, or until cake tester comes out clean.


My thoughts on the cake
– the texture was indeed soft and moist, my reservations that it may turn out dry were unfounded. However, mine turned out a little gummy at the bottom, though the top half of the cake was alright. it also had this crease around the middle of the cake. It has happened with my chiffon cakes before, when I baked them entirely on top/bottom heat with no fan. What I’d do if I were to bake this cake again would be to start baking with fan assist for the first 10 minutes, then switch to top/bottom heat for the next 10 minutes, and perhaps back to fan assist in last 10 minutes of baking so as to dry the cake out a little.

– I added vanilla extract generously, and there wasn’t any eggy taste to the cake. Perhaps I could consider adding some grand marnier or orange zest to the cake the next time.

– this is a really simple, fuss free sponge cake that is good to eat on its own with a nice cup of tea. If desired, it could be dressed up with some whipped cream and fresh fruit slices.

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Take #2: Pandan chiffon cake


After the Frankenstein-y green pandan cake the last time, I bought some pandan leaves and made a pandan cake again. This time, with fresh pandan juice.

To extract the pandan juice, cut the pandan leaves up finely into a bowl and add some water. I used just about enough water to cover the leaves because I wanted a very thick juice. Blend the leaf and juice mixture.

To extract a concentrated juice, squeeze the pulp into a bowl. As for the remaining water from the blended mixture, you can strain it separately and use it too.

As for the coconut milk to be used, my favorite brand is a Thai brand called Chao Koh. I always stock up on a few packets of it every time I visit the supermarket at Golden Mile.

With fresh pandan juice, the cake turned out a lovely light green hue. I wanted a slightly darker green, so i added just a smudge of pandan essense for the colour. Combined with my favorite chiffon cake recipe from Keiko Ishida’s book, the cake had the lightest, fluffiest texture. It was like eating a pandan cloud. 🙂

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Eats #2 – Chicken Rice

One of the foods I love to have when I travel to Bangkok is the Chicken Rice that can be found at the street stalls. There is a stall along Convent Soi near the Saladaeng area which I’d go to if I’m around the area.

Thai style chicken rice is quite similar to the hainanese chicken rice we have, but it seems a little less oily to me. The accompanying chilli sauce is also different.

Saw this recipe on for Khao Man Gai, which is Thai chicken rice and it seemed simple enough, so I decided to cook my own chicken rice one weekend.


Hainanese chicken rice

For the chicken broth
1 chicken
2-3 thick slices of ginger, lightly smashed
3-4 cloves garlic
Small bunch of spring onions
2-3 cilantro roots
Ice cold water, for cooling down the cooked chicken later on

Clean the chicken well on the outside as well as inside the cavity of the bird. I’ll always use some salt to give the skin and cavity a good rub before rinsing off. If you want, you can trim off the excess fat before cooking. But it’s okay if you choose to leave more or most of the fat behind, for chicken rice, because its the chicken fat that is rendered into the broth after cooking that helps to make the rice even more flavorful!

Put the cleaned chicken into a large pot, and put in just enough water to cover the bird. Add in the ginger, garlic, spring onions and cilantro roots and bring it to a boil. The aromatics can be stuffed into the cavity of the bird prior to boiling, if you wish.


Once it comes to a boil, turn the fire down so that it stays as a simmer. The cooking time would vary with the size of the chicken. i used a small chicken (<1kg) so mine was done in about fifteen minutes. Be careful not to overcook the chicken, especially if you are using a small bird.

Once the chicken is done, remove it from the pot and plunge it into a big bowl filled with icy cold water, so that the residual heat doesn't continue to cook the chicken.

After the chicken has cooled, remove from the bowl, let the excess water drip off and let the chicken rest on a plate.

The chicken broth can be used to cook the rice, and also to prepare a clear soup. For the soup, I cut up some winter melon and after a quick boil in the chicken broth, a simple tasty soup is ready!


For the rice
4-5 cloves of garlic
4-5 slices of ginger
7-8 stalks of pandan leaves, washed and cut into 3-4 inch pieces
Chicken fat reserved from the chicken stock from poaching the chicken
Approx 2.5 cups of Chicken stock/water
Approx 2 cups of rice


Put into the rice cooker and mix well. Set the rice cooker to cook!

For the chilli sauce
60g chilli
40g ginger
20g garlic
Salt, sesame oil and white vinegar

Blend till fine in a food processor. For the chillis, you can use a mix of large red chillis and chilli padi, depending on your spice tolerance. I used 1 chilli padi for every one large red chilli.

When the above has been blended, stir in some salt, sesame oil and white vinegar to taste.

If you wish, you can prepare a ginger sauce to go with the chicken too. Simply grate some fresh ginger and mix in some salt and sesame oil.


For the garnish
2 tbsp soya sauce
1 tbsp sesame oil
A dash of gin (optional)
Coriander leaves

Slice up some cucumber and line them up on the serving plate for the chicken. I like to use the Japanese variety as I find them more tasty and crunchy compared to the local variety.

Chop up the chicken and arrange the pieces nicely on top of the bed of cucumber slices. Garnish with the sesame oil and soy sauce mixture, and coriander leaves.

Serve with the rice, chilli and ginger sauce, and winter melon soup. A simple, tasty meal is ready!


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