Thursday, 25 June 2009

Tomato Beef

I realised that we can find a lot of tomato dishes in HK. They have tomato egg, tomato beef, tomato noodles, tomato 拉面… etc. Tomatoes are very healthy food. They can help improve skin texture and colour. They can also help to reduce blood cholestrol. Tomatoes also contain lycopene (the red pigment in tomato) and this is a powerful antioxidant that can help fight cancer cells.

This tomato beef dish is easy to make and it can store for a few days. It can be eaten with rice, instant noodles or spaghetti.


Minced Beef


Carrot (Optional)

Celery (Optional)

Frozen Vegetables (Carrot, Corn, Peas)

Minced Garlic

Onion (Roughly chopped)


Tomato Sauce


Soy Sauce


Sesame oil


1. Marinade the beef with salt, sugar and sesame oil for at least 10 mins.

2. You can add some water to the beef to prevent it from clumping during frying.

3. Thinly make a cross in the skin at the bottom of each tomato.
4. Boil the tomatoes for about 5 mins until the skins are separated.
5. Cool the tomatoes in cold water, remove the skins and chopped them into small cubes.
6. Add oil to the wok and add in the onions.
7. Add in the garlic and stir fry till fragrant.
8. Add in the minced beef and stir fry till about 80% cooked.
9. Add in the chopped tomatoes, vegetables and water.

10. Add Tomato Sauce, Sugar and Soy Sauce.

11. Simmer the beef till the sauce thickens.

This is my lunch box with eggs, vegetables and tomato beef :) The rice is at the bottom of the tomato beef.

Isn't this breakfast pretty? :p

Goodbye Gold Coast

We have finally completed the move to our new place :) The other day, when I was buying MacDonald for dinner at our old place – Gold Coast, I happened to be impressed by the views and took a couple of pictures.

When we first moved in, we were wowed by the beautiful views and relaxing environment. But honestly, I didn’t pay much attention to the views in the 1.5 years that we stayed there.

Monday, 15 June 2009

Prima Taste - Laksa

As I said before, the quality of food in HK is better than Singapore. For example, there are branches of Tonkichi in Singapore and in HK. I have tried both before and the one in HK is really fantastic!

However, I still miss a lot of Singapore’s local food. That’s when I discovered Prima Taste! Prima Taste has a lot of Singapore's Favourites in Ready-to-Cook Pastes. They are simple to use and really taste very much like the original. I especially love their Laksa and Curry. They only take less than half an hour to prepare.

Friday, 12 June 2009

Beautiful Wedding

I attended a beautiful wedding last weekend. It was my sister-in-law’s wedding :) The wedding was held at a restaurant in Rochester Park, Singapore. They had a very beautiful wedding cake.

It was a sweet and simple affair, which celebrated the union of two wonderful persons.

Talking about weddings, I wished that I had a garden wedding instead of the normal oriental-style wedding dinners. Hmmm…. Maybe I can persuade my hubby to have a garden ceremony when we re-new our vows probably 10 years later! Hee… Something to dream about…

Fried Rice

Fried Rice with Char Siew

Fried Rice with Chicken

Cooking fried rice is both easy and difficult. Easy, because it is just one dish, you do not have to think of other dishes to go with it. Difficult, because it is very tedious work to cook it. You have to slice all the ingredients to tiny pieces, then you have to fry each of the ingredients separately first, before combining them together.

The most important thing is the rice has to be quite dry. You can put the rice uncovered in the refrigerator for at least 5 hours, or cook it with less water. If the rice is wet, it will become “mashed” fried rice, you can’t see the rice 一粒粒. To prevent the rice from sticking to the wok, we need to heat up the oil and “spread” it around the wok.

I have not figured out which is the correct way to “coat” the rice with egg:

  • Pour the egg into the wok first and quickly put in the rice and stir so that all the grains are covered with egg OR
  • Pour the rice first and then pour the egg over the rice and stir
Please let me know if you know which way is correct or if there are other ways! :)


Oil, Rice
Garlic (chopped)
Chicken thigh / char siew
Chinese Dried Mushroom
Dried Chinese sausages (La Cheong)
Frozen Vegetables (Peas, Corns and Carrots)
Egg (Shredded and also some for “coating” the rice)


1. If using chicken thighs, remove the skin and rub with salt. Then, blanched it in hot water and marinate with soy sauce, cornflour, sesame oil, Chinese cooking wine for at least 30 mins.

2. Soak the Chinese mushrooms in hot water to soften, then remove the stem and cut the rest of the mushrooms into cubes.

3. To make the prawns more crunchy, first remove the shells and veins, then rub it with salt and cornflour to try and remove their skins. Then, put under running water for 10 mins.

4. Soak the sausages in hot water and then remove the outer skin and cut them into cubes.

5. For 2 cups of rice, normally I will use 4 eggs. Beat the eggs and pour half to make the omelette. Then, shred them.

6. Fry each of the ingredients separately with oil, adding some garlic when frying the prawns and chicken.

7. Oil the wok again and pour in the rest of the eggs, then the rice.

8. Stir well to evenly distribute the eggs.

9. When the rice is golden, pour in the other ingredients and continue stirring to mix the ingredients. Add seasonings - salt and pepper to taste.

Thursday, 11 June 2009

Vin’s Fav – Black Pepper Honey Grilled Wings

When I saw the white plate at a departmental store, I knew it would be perfect for chicken wings... Hee... One of the first things I tried cooking was chicken wings, as it is Vin’s favourite :) I tried frying chicken wings before but found that it will get burnt outside easily and the inside will still remain uncooked. Deep frying is too messy and unhealthy. Hence, I settled for grilled as my oven can support grill functions. Also, the chicken will be tender and juicy inside after grilling.


Soya sauce
Black pepper

For glazing:
Honey with Black pepper

1. Wash the chicken wings and rub them with salt
2. Blanched them in hot water
3. Marinate them with the ingredients shown above for at least 30 mins
4. I usually cover the tray with an aluminium foil for grilling. Oil it.
5. Place the chicken wings in and grill them.
6. Every 10 mins, turn the wings over and glaze them until they are cooked (Takes about 30 to 40 mins)

Moving House

Introducing my sis's dog... Minnie!!! Haha... She looks so adorable with this expression. She loves eating toothpicks, tissues and chewing walls!

In case you are wondering why there are no food posts yet, well… it is because I am too busy with packing house to consolidate all the food pictures. We are moving house on the 19 June and the current house is in a mess now.

When you first moved into a new house, it seems like there are some procedures to follow. I have compiled the following to be done:

- Bring over salt, rice and sugar, bottle of cooking oil and vinegar

- Boil water and turn on all lights
Besides the above, water is boiled immediately after entering the home and all lights in the home are turned on for at least 15 minutes. If one is staying in the house, turn on the `balcony' light or if there is no balcony, the living room light for that night.

- Red Packets
Red Hong Bao packets are also placed on the kitchen stove and keep a Red Hong Bao in each bedroom's cupboard drawer. The money should be even numbers. For example, it can be 6 cents. For the Hokkien, 6 sounds like luck. For the Cantonese, they may use 8 cents for luck.

- Rice
Since the stable food of the Chinese is rice, than it is natural to go into the home and sprinkle (scatter) rice all around the various rooms of the home. (REMEMBER: Don't spill it out of the window).

- Green Beans
Green symbolise the East or rising sun. And again scattering green beans in the home is symbolic of seeding the home (with children). Just imagine - the hope is that green beans sprout in the home and this symbolic gesture has to do with this.

- Salt
Especially if the house is a second-hand one, often, salt is sprinkled around the home to supposedly cleanse away bad qi or old qi. And it is also sprinkled in the toilet.

Getting a new home is really something exciting, especially since we are very much involved in the renovations and decorations. I will definitely take some nice photos to show you our sweet home after we have moved in :p

Wednesday, 10 June 2009

Living in HK...

My husband and I are Singaporeans. We were married for a year, before he had a job posting in HK. So, we packed our bags and moved to HK about 1.5 years ago. When we first came, I was jobless and had a lot of free time to explore how to cook and do housework.

I can’t even fry an egg, can’t even iron a single cloth, etc. However, after 3 months, I was able to do all these and much more… My daily routine as a housewife (not Tai Tai! Tai Tai doesn’t need to perform any household chores) was to wake up early, prepare breakfast for my hubby. Then, clean up the whole house – Clean furniture, vacuum and mop the floor. I will then go explore HK supermarkets, shopping centers and wet markets. After that, I will prepare dinner. Sometimes, I will try out the dinner dishes by preparing them for lunch.

After some time, I grew bored and became very obsessed in maintaining a clean home. I can’t stand a single strand of hair or even a speck of dust. It got so bad that my hubby says I got 洁癖. Finally, I found a project and it doesn’t matter now if my house has 100 strands of hair :p

At first glance, HK is actually quite similar to Singapore… Same tall buildings, same shopping centers, same workaholics. However, after some time, you will notice some distinct differences. The language is mainly Cantonese. However, they are more proficient in Mandarin recently.

The maids in HK have defined working hours and they have their own free time on Sundays and public holidays. The rich/poor gap is larger in HK. And HK is really a shopping haven! There are so many varieties of brands and they are so much cheaper in HK. There are some things that you can’t even buy in Singapore, even when you have money, as the brands are not available in Singapore.

As for food, the quality in HK is much better. However, I still miss Singapore local fare – Laksa, Roti Prata, Curry, Hokkien Mee etc…

Tuesday, 9 June 2009

At the Beginning...

This blog is set up with the sole intention of revealing what my hubby, Vin, is having for dinners. When I started cooking, I was not even able to fry an egg. The first egg I attempted was when I was staying at a service apartment. It was an electric stove and the level was from 1 to 10. I tried the number 5 setting. I poured olive oil onto a saucepan and it immediately turned black... I should say that the saucepot looked like it has a black coating! Well... I thought it was "normal" behaviour and broke an egg into it.

The whole thing turned black and the whole room was filled with smoke. By then, I knew... that this was not normal behaviour and turned off the stove. I was so worried that the smoke detector would go off. So, I used the main door as fan and hoped that the smoke will dissipate soon! After that, I’m left with just a black-coated saucepan that no amount of scrubbing can remove. I was too embarrassed to call the staff for help. (After that, a friend of mine said that I could have easily asked for a change in saucepan from the hotel staff.)

I had to source for help from my aunt who taught me the power of WHITE VINEGAR! All you need to do is pour in white vinegar with some water and boil it. After some time, it can be scrubbed off easily. And white vinegar is very useful in getting rid of oily stuff, especially useful for cleaning kitchen walls and cabinets.

Lessons learnt in frying an egg: Use number 1 or 2 setting for cooking on electric stove; white vinegar is very powerful in the kitchen; consult Aunt when in doubt :p

Well… As time passes, I learned how to cook edible dinners and have become very interested in cooking. As how Vin puts it, it is one of the rare tasks that I can spend a long time doing QUIETLY, and not bother him at all. So, it proves that a pampered girl can still become a cook. Hope this will be an inspiration to the rest of the pampered girls out there!