Monday, June 6, 2016

[Recipe] Spaghetti Tossed with Roast Chicken Shreds

I have always been a fan of easy one dish meals - unless there are specific requests to satisfy cravings. Bee hoon, pork teppenyaki, "claypot" chicken rice, chicken chop hor fun, chicken stew, hokkien mee, oyaku don and the usual fried rice are just my kind of typical one dish meals that I cook frequently.

I roasted a chicken just the other day, typically to shred it and pair it with spaghetti in tomato based sauce. Instead, I decided to try using the juices left from roasting the chicken and toss it with spaghetti. It turned out to be a very hearty and savoury one dish meal!

Preparation time : 15 minutes  Cooking time : 1 hour 30 mins  Serves : 4

Ingredients :
- 1 whole chicken, halved for easier handling when roasting
- 1 large carrot, sliced
- 2 medium sized onions
- 4 tomatoes, sliced
- 1 packet shitake mushrooms, sliced
- 1 cup fresh milk (this is an important ingredient to ensure the chicken doesn't dry out while roasting and it aids with a flavorful, caramelized sauce)
- 1/2 a bottle of Red wine and garlic marinade (see picture below)
- Mixed dried herbs (optional)
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 3/4 packet of spaghetti

Method :

  • set oven temperature to 180 degree celcius.
  • Slice all the vegetables and place them in a deep oven pan.
  • Then marinade the chicken and leave it for about half and hour to absorb the flavors, before putting it on top of the vegetables. Add milk in the tray. At this point, I also added the mixed herbs for extra fragrance.
  • Place the tray in the middle tier of your oven and start roasting it for about 1 hour 15 minutes.

  • When it's done, take it out and place the chicken on a separate plate so that you can use the juices from the roasted chicken.
  • When the chicken has cooled down, hand shred the chicken meat. (And keep the bones for cooking soup the next time!)
  • Cook the spaghetti, as you would and then placed it into the tray and toss it well with the vegetables.  If you are not serving it straight away, make sure you heat up the vegetables and it's juices before tossing the spaghetti in.
  • Serve it hot and enjoy a simple and very heart-warming dish.

Till the next post, have a wonderful day!

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Crepe Paper Flower Craft

I have been an avid follower of Julie from Paper Play Design on instagram for quite a while. She is a very friendly, talented paper artist who makes super-duper-awesome-pretty paper flowers. Such are the instagrammers I follow that make my day even more beautiful and inspiring every time they post a photo. Check out her recent feed!

So gorgeous, isn't it?

Needless to say, she inspired me to try my hands on making paper flowers for myself since I am quite impossible with managing real plants at home. I felt it would be most ideal to "grow" paper flowers from scratch and gather myself a nice pot of mixed flowers for home decor. And better still that it's absolutely allergen free!

Here's my very first trial flower. 

Then I got a little bit more confident and painted the petals on my second stalk. The reason why I paint them instead of getting ready made colored crepe papers is because I prefer to make it look more natural. Moreover, I cannot afford to store so many colored crepe papers in my limited crafting space! So I figured the best is to get white and I can paint whatever color I want. A little tedious but it's all worth it in the end.

Subsequently, I made a tiny bunch of flowers to brighten up my father's niche and a bigger bunch of flowers that was meant for a gift. But I was too pai-seh (embarrassed) to gift it in the end because I didn't know how my friend would react to receiving paper flowers. I think it may be a little bit odd in our Asian culture.

What would you think if you received a bouquet like this?

I spent about 6 hours over a span of 3 days to get this bouquet of flowers made.

Just a few days ago, my daughter asked me to make a a flower wreath that she can paste on her room door. (I think its just the sweetest thing she has ever asked me to make for her!) So I obliged!

I am still "growing" my flowers whenever I find the time away from jewelry work to make them. I never would have realized that making flowers would be very therapeutic and inspiring for me. So when the time comes, I hope to show a very beautiful pot of flowers that will enhance my home decor. 

If you too, are keen to try out making paper flowers, you may like to check out several tutorials I have pinned on my pinterest feed. Give it a go... maybe?

Till the next post, have a wonderful day!

Absolutely Me, 

Thursday, April 21, 2016

[Recipe] Steam Herbal Prawns

Traditionally, many would identify this dish as drunken prawns. But this applies at restaurants where live prawns are being tossed in chinese wine and cooked straight away. This is certainly unthinkable when cooking at home. In my home, at least!

One of the best ways to replicate drunken prawns is by steaming. This is the easiest and fastest dish to prepare, may I add, a healthy and impressive one too! Just make sure that the prawns are really really fresh.

I've tweaked the soup base a little by adding some chicken stock, instead of just 100% chinese wine (Shaoxing wine or hua tiao chiew), so that my daughter can enjoy the soup. She's a soup fanatic!

Preparation time : 5-10 mins  |  Cooking time : 10 mins  |  Serves : 2-3

Ingredients :
- 8 to 10 medium/large fresh prawns
- 1/4 cup hua tiao chiew (or make it 1/2 cup if you are not adding chicken stock)
- 1/2 cup chicken stock (optional)
- 1 medium slice dang gui a.k.a. angelica root*
- 1/2 a tbsp of goji berries or wolfberries

*If you like a stronger herbal flavor, you can add another slice of dang gui. May get a little bitter though!

Method :
- in a small bowl, soak the angelica root and goji berries in chinese wine, so that the herbal flavor will be infused in the wine. 5 - 10 minutes would do.
- wash the prawns and trim the tip of the heads and legs.
- lay the prawns in a shallow plate, without overlapping each other.
- In a wok, bring the water to a boil, then reduce to simmer before placing the plate of prawns in.
- Pour the bowl of wine on top of the prawns, together with the chicken stock, then cover to steam for 10 minutes.
- Serve and enjoy!

Till the next post, have a wonderful day!

Absolutely Me,


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