Crispy Crunchy Roasted Chickpeas

Ben found a bag of dried chickpeas in the pantry. He decided to make some chickpea snacks that he used to have in his childhood. In the old days in Kuala Lumpur, we had mobile Indian snacks trader who sell peanuts, chickpeas, etc. They used old newspapers or magazine to roll into a cone as the packaging material for the products.

Photo credited to pinosy.com

We called them “kacang puteh man” because when they come to a residential area, they will shout “kacang puteh” to promote their presence. They are often found outside the cinemas, school, wet market, etc.


Ingredients

  • 20 ounces dried chickpeas or a large can chickpeas
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3/4 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

Source: this recipe is adapted from itdoesnttastelikechicken.com

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Braised Pork Hock

Ben and the boys like fatty pork. Me, not so much.

Ben made the above Braised Pork Hock in a pressure cooker.

Ingredients

  • 2 pieces of cinnamon bark
  • 2 pieces of star anise
  • 1 teaspoon of white pepper corn
  • 1/2 teaspoon of cloves
  • 1 bulb garlic with skin on
  • 4 slices ginger
  • 10g of rock sugar
  • 1 piece of bay leaf
  • 2 cups of Chinese white rice wine
  • 1/2 cup light soy sauce
  • 1 cup dark soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons cooking oil
  • 2 pork hocks, hair removed

Source: this recipe is from spicenpans.com

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Pork Belly and Mushroom Rice

Here is another recipe from The Woks of Life, one of Ben’s favourite following.

We made this for one of the Christmas potluck gathering.

Ingredients

  • 6 dried shiitake mushrooms, reconstituted for 2 hours, squeezed dry (saving the soaking liquid), diced
  • 1/2 pound pork belly, diced
  • 1 piece of spiced tofu, diced
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 3 slices ginger, minced
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons Shaoxing wine
  • 3 tablespoons light soy sauce
  • 3/4 teaspoon dark soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1/2 to 3/4 cup mushroom soaking liquid
  • 4 cups cooked rice
  • 1 scallion, finely chopped

Source: this recipe is adapted from The Woks of Life

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Spicy Black Bean Twice Cooked Potatoes

We bought a bag of very cheap white potatoes from a grocery store along Fraser St, something like $1.49 for a bag. It was on sale because some of the bags were wet. I found one bag that was not wet and I made sure I pad dry the potatoes with paper towel when I got home.

Ingredients

  • 4 to 5 medium yellow or white potaotoes, scrubbed and cut into bite-sized chunks
  • salt to taste
  • 1/8 teaspoon white pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon five-spice powder
  • canola oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, smashed and coarsely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon chili flakes (depending on your tolerance for heat)
  • 2 tablespoons black beans
  • 1 tablespoon shaoxing wine or rice wine
  • 1 teaspoon light soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon dark soy sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 bunch of green onions, sliced diagonally

Source: this recipe is adapted from The Woks of Life

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Daikon and Carrot Pickles

Ben made some daikon and carrot pickles as appetizer at home. I’m impressed by his patience in cutting the daikon and carrot into the match stick size.

These daikon and carrot refrigerator pickles are found in Vietnamese banh mi sandwiches and is known as “do chua”. Some Chinese restaurants also serve this as appetizers along with fried peanuts.

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds of daikon, peeled (we used 1 large daikon)
  • 2 pounds of carrots, peeled (we used 1 large Asian style carrot)
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 4 teaspoons sugar
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 1/2 cups white vinegar
  • 2 cups warm water (warm enough to dissolve the sugar)

Source: this recipe is adapted from simplyrecipes.com

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Stir Fried Pork Belly with Garlic Stem

Garlic stem is in season. It is 99cents for a bunch.

We cooked this Stir Fried Pork Belly with Garlic Stem as a side dish to go with steamed rice.

Ingredients

  • a bunch of garlic stem, cut into 1 inch pieces
  • half a pound of pork belly, thinly sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon mushroom seasonings
  • 1 teaspoon soy sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar

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Stir Fried Chicken with Ginger and Green Onion

Ben cooked this homey dish for dinner as we bought a lot of chicken legs which was on sale, something like $1.06 per pound.

Ingredients

  • 4 chicken legs cut into small pieces
  • 3 inches of ginger knob, cut into thin slices
  • 4 cloves of garlic, peeled, smashed lightly
  • a bunch of green onions, cut into 1 inch pieces, white and green parts separated
  • 2 teaspoons Shaoxing wine, divided
  • 2 tablespoons light soy sauce, divided
  • 2 tablespoons oyster sauce, divided
  • 1 teaspoon dark soy sauce
  • white pepper to taste
  • a few drops of sesame oil
  • a dash of sugar

Marinate the chicken pieces with a tablespoon of oyster sauce, a tablespoon of light soy sauce and a teaspoon of Shaoxing wine for at least 30 minutes in the refrigerator.

P/S: You can adjust the seasonings to your preference

This recipe is from Cooking Ah Pa.

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Cinnamon Star

Ben surprised me one day with this Cinnamon Star bread. I was totally amazed that for someone who has no experience in baking can make something so awesome on his first attempt.

Ingredients

For the bread:

  • 2 cups unbleached all purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup potato flour
  • 1/4 cup milk powder
  • 3/4 cup to 1 cup lukewarm water, enough to make a soft, smooth dough
  • 1/4 cup (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons instant yeast
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt

For the filing:

  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon powder

Source: blog.kingarthurflour.com

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Ants Climbing Tree

I love this dish called Ants Climbing Tree. So, Ben made it for me one day.

Ingredients

  • 4 oz mung bean noodle/glass noodle
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1 tablespoon finely minced ginger
  • 1 tablespoon spicy fermented bean sauce
  • 4 oz ground pork
  • 1 can (398ml) chicken broth
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon dark soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons light soy sauce
  • 2 stalks green onion, chopped
  • 2 Thai chili, finely chopped (optional)

Source: The woks of Life

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Candied Ginger

Ben made some candied ginger for snacking in the wintery cold weather.

Ginger is a common kitchen spice which has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. It is commonly used to treat nausea and morning sickness.

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 pounds ginger (We started off with 2 pounds of ginger, but after removing skins and small pieces that is not usable, we were left with 1 1/2 pounds)
  • pinch of salt
  • 3 cups white caned sugar
  • extra sugar for coating

Yield: 1 pound candied ginger

Source: Kimberly Killebrew, www.daringgourmet.com

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