Ingredients

Kaffir Lime Leaves & Powder

Kaffir Lime Leaves & Powder

Kaffir lime leaves are easily recognisable. The leaves are dark green in colour and have a unique double-segmented leaves. Its hour glass shape and deep emerald green leaves adorn dull, brown curries beautifully. I’ll garnish curry with the whole leaf or sprinkle long and thinly slices […]

Common Chinese Herbs in English and Chinese

Common Chinese Herbs in English and Chinese

I grew up drinking herbal soup and tonics with a lot of unidentifiable things in it. There were sweet red rounded things (goji berries) and what look like thick tree barks (codonopsis root). While I could name some of them by their Chinese names, I […]

Hyacinth Bean (Pang Pei Dau/ 彭皮豆)

Hyacinth Bean (Pang Pei Dau/ 彭皮豆)

Hyacinth bean, or better known as ‘Pang Pei Dau/ 彭皮豆’ in Cantonese, or Avarakkai in Tamil. There are a few varieties of this bean – some have purple edges and others are completely purple in colour. Young beans are used in curries and stir-fry. However, my […]

Curry Leaves

Curry Leaves

In Malaysia, curry leaves are available in the gardens of many households. I live in the surburb where you can easily find this plant growing by the roadside. As my neighbour has a huge and healthy curry leaves tree (which she generously offer us to […]

Mixed Fenugreek Spice/ Talipu

Mixed Fenugreek Spice/ Talipu

Mixed Fenugreek is a mix of fenugreek, fennel, mustard seed, cumin and urad dal. I first learned of this spice mix when I learned to make dhal curry from Aunty Clara, an Indian mother who cooks for her family. If you’re a fan of dhal, […]

Kombu (Kelp)

Kombu (Kelp)

Kelp, or known as kombu/ konbu in Japanese, is a type of seaweed. Its widely used in Japan to make a soup base called dashi (Recipe: Japanese Dashi Stock). Taste & smell Seaweed has the basic salty-savoury taste thanks to concentrated minerals and amino acid, […]

Flower Crab (Ketam Bunga/ 花蟹)

Flower Crab (Ketam Bunga/ 花蟹)

Flower crab are not as fleshy as mud crab. However, I find that the flesh in larger flower crab is tolerable; I can still find substantial meat. I buy this crab a lot more than mud crab  because it’s not alive when sold, making it […]

Dried Chinese Mushrooms (Shiitake Mushrooms)

Dried Chinese Mushrooms (Shiitake Mushrooms)

Mushroom is considered a medicinal food in Traditional Chinese Medicine. Dried mushrooms are hard and they need to be soaked in water to softened. When I first started cooking and had very little time, I rarely use dried mushroom in my cooking as it takes […]

Salted Egg (Ham Dan/ 咸蛋)

Salted Egg (Ham Dan/ 咸蛋)

Salted egg is a  popular preserved Chinese food. Fresh duck eggs are soaked in brine (salty water) for about 20 to 30 days, or packing each egg in damp, salted charcoal. This method draws water out of bacteria and mold, hence stop their growth. It […]

Pandan leaves

Pandan leaves

Pandan leaves is Malaysian favourite natural flavouring. It is used to impart fragrance into dessert and rice. Other names English name: Pandan leaves Malay name: Daun pandan Chinese name: Pan Dan Yip (班兰叶)/ 七葉蘭 How to use Tear the leaves to allow more aroma to be released […]

Salted Dried Sour Plum (Asam boi/ 酸梅)

Salted Dried Sour Plum (Asam boi/ 酸梅)

I always have a stash of sour plum in my kitchen. It’s like a habit; my mother always have a stash hidden in the kitchen and I felt it’s something I must keep. It’s much like a Firstaid kit; a must-have at home. She would […]

Passion fruit

Passion fruit

Passionfruit are rather small. When cut open, it reveal only small amount of pulpy seeds. But despite its small size, the fruit is concentrated in flavour and too sour to eat it on its own. I love to make juices with it and top it […]