Sunday, February 28, 2010

Linguine With Artichoke Hearts And Olives

If you like artichokes and olives, then try this Linguine With Artichoke Hearts And Olives. This is one of my favorite pasta to serve if I am having a light and easy weekday dinner. I had some cherry tomatoes in the fridge and decided to add some into the pasta. Certainly made the pasta looked more appetizing with the vibrant colors. Agree?

Recipe adapted from Patsy's Cookbook-Classic Italian Recipes

Linguine With Artichoke Hearts And Olives
(Printable Recipe)


¼ Cup Olive Oil
8 Garlic Cloves, thinly sliced
8 Artichoke Hearts (canned in water), drained and quartered
¼ Cup Kalamata Olives, pitted and chopped
1 ¼ Cup Chicken Broth
4 Plum Tomatoes, coarsely chopped
8 Basil Leaves
Sea Salt and Black Pepper, to taste
1 lb Linguine, cooked al dente
2 Tbsp Freshly Grated Parmigiano-Reggiano


Heat the oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add the garlic and sauté for 1 to 2 minutes, until golden. Add the quartered artichoke hearts, the olives, and the broth and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and allow the liquid to simmer for about 5 minutes, or until reduced by half.

Add the tomatoes and basil, and cook an additional 2 to 3 minutes. Season the mixture with sea salt and pepper.

Place the cooked linguine in a serving bowl. Spoon the sauce over the pasta to combine. Sprinkle with grated Parmigiano-Reggiano.

Serves 4

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Fresh Mango Bread

I had made this Fresh Mango Bread a couple of weeks back. The fresh mangoes used here provided lots of great tasting natural sweetness and the hint of cinnamon was just perfect for us. (I had to omit the ground ginger because I knew my kids wouldn’t like it.) Anyway, I will be making my way back to Vancouver soon and will resume to posting more new recipes soon. Have a good week ahead :)

Recipe adapted from Baking: From My Home To Yours by Dorie Greenspan

Fresh Mango Bread
(Printable Recipe)

3 Large Eggs
¾ Cup Canola or Safflower Oil
2 ½ Cups All-Purpose Flour
1 Cup Sugar
1 tsp Baking Powder
1 tsp Baking Soda
1 ½ tsp Ground Ginger
1 tsp Ground Cinnamon
¼ tsp Sea Salt
½ Cup (packed) Light Brown Sugar
2 Cups Diced Mango (from 1 large peeled and pitted mango)
¾ Cup Moist, plump Golden Raisins
Grated Zest of ½ Lime


Preheat the oven to 350˚F.

Butter an 8 ½ x 4 ½-inch loaf pan, dust the inside with flour and tap out the excess. Put the pan on an insulated baking sheet or on two regular baking sheets stacked one on top of the other. (This extra insulation will keep the bottom of the bread from overbaking.)

Whisk the eggs and oil together.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, spices and salt. Rub the brown sugar between your palms into the bowl, breaking up any lumps, and then stir it in. Pour the wet ingredients over the dry, switch to a sturdy rubber spatula or wooden spoon and mix until blended-the batter will be very thick (really more like a dough than a batter) and not easily mixed, but persevere, it will soon come together. Stir in the mango, raisins and zest. Scrape the batter into the pan and smooth the top with a rubber spatula.

Bake the bread for 1-½ hours, or until it is golden brown and a thin knife inserted into the center comes out clean. (If the bread looks as if it’s getting too brown as it bakes, cover it loosely with a foil tent.) Transfer the pan to a rack and cool for 5 minutes before running a knife around the sides of the pan and unmolding. Invert and cool to room temperature right side up on the rack.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Fried Chickpea Patties With Sesame Seed Sauce – Revithokeftedes me Tahini Saltsa

This is Fried Chickpea Patties with Sesame Seed Sauce or Revithokeftedes me Tahini Saltsa in Greek. According to my son, having the patties with the sauce reminds him of Hummus! To a large extent, his assessment is correct, as all the ingredients used are identical. It is sort of like eating a deconstructed Hummus. The patties do taste really good with the sesame seed sauce. Try it!

Recipe adapted from The Complete Book Of Greek Cooking

Fried Chickpea Patties With Sesame Seed Sauce – Revithokeftedes me Tahini Saltsa
(Printable Recipe)


Sesame Seed Sauce
(Yield: 1 ½ Cups)
1 Tbsp Minced Garlic
½ Cup Tahini (sesame seed paste)
6 Tbsp Fresh Lemon Juice
1/3 Cup Cold Water (approximately)
½ tsp Ground Cumin
Sea Salt to taste

Combine garlic and tahini in a work bowl. Pulse briefly. Add remaining ingredients and blend quickly.

Chickpea Patties
(Yield: About 24 Patties)
One 20 oz Can Chickpeas
½ Cup Minced Onion
2 Tbsp Butter
1 Egg, beaten
2 Tbsp Minced Parsley
Sea Salt and Pepper to taste
Dash of Dried Oregano
2 Tbsp Grated Sharp Cheeses
1 to 2 Tbsp Water (if needed)
Flour for rolling
Vegetable Oil for frying


Drain and rinse the chickpeas with cold water. Mash with a fork or in a blender or food processor. Sauté onion in butter until soft and golden; remove from the heat.

Add chickpeas, beaten egg, parsley, salt, pepper, oregano, and grated cheese. Add 1 to 2 Tbsp water, if necessary, to form a soft mixture. Shape into 2-inch patties. Roll in flour and fry in oil until golden. Serve with Sesame Seed Sauce.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Spinach Balls-Spanakokeftedes

I decided to get away from Vancouver BC for a couple of weeks or so to avoid the throng of Winter Olympics visitors and to celebrate the Chinese Lunar New Year in Malaysia this year. During this period, please note that I will not be posting new recipes regularly.

Here, I have two delicious and healthy appetizers to share with you this week. This is Greek Spinach Balls or Spanakokeftedes. These spinach balls are crunchy on the outside and soft in the inside. The recipe had called for Kefalotiri cheese. But, I had to substitute it with Parmigiano-Reggiano instead as I was unable to find any at my local grocers. Using regular Parmesan cheese for this recipe will also be fine.

Recipe adapted from The Complete Book Of Greek Cooking

Spinach Balls-Spanakokeftedes
(Printable Recipe)


2 lbs Fresh Spinach
3 Eggs
3 Tbsp Melted Butter
1 Cup Grated Kefalotiri or Parmesan Cheese
½ Cup Crumbled Feta Cheese
½ Cup Minced Dill
Sea Salt and Black Pepper to taste
1 Cup Breadcrumbs
Vegetable Oil for frying


Wash and clean the spinach, removing the stems. Do not drain. Place in a large saucepan, cover, and steam over high heat until wilted, about 3 minutes. Drain and chop.

Mix all ingredients except breadcrumbs and oil. Shape the mixture into 1-inch balls. Roll in breadcrumbs and deep-fry in hot oil. Drain on paper towels and serve warm.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Kampar Chicken Biscuit Crisps-Kai Chai Paeng

This is a rather unique biscuit, which apparently originated from Kampar, Perak. Kampar is the name of a town in the northern state of Perak in Malaysia. So, here is the strange thing, the Kampar Chicken Biscuit does not have any chicken in it at all! Irrespective of the rationale behind the name, I just simply enjoy them (which, I refer to as sesame seed biscuits with my kids). There are two versions of this biscuit, one is thick with doughy texture and the other is what I have here, the thin and crispy version. Needless to say, I like the latter which is why I made them.. :)

Recipe adapted from Flavours by Debbie Teoh

Kampar Chicken Biscuit Crisps (Kai Chai Paeng)
(Printable Recipe)

Ingredients A
30 g Fermented Red Bean Curd (nam yue)
1 Large Egg
50 ml Milk
60 ml Cooking Oil
1 tsp Sesame Oil
½ tsp Sea Salt
30 g Confectioners Sugar
30 g Maltose

100 g Candied Melon (tung kwa), chopped
80 g Sesame Seeds

Ingredients B
300 g All-Purpose Flour, sifted
½ tsp Ground Cinnamon
2 tsp Five-Spice Powder
½ tsp Ground White Pepper
1 tsp Baking Powder
¼ tsp Ammonia Powder


Place ingredients A into a large mixing bowl and stir to mix until salt dissolves. Add the candied melon and sesame seeds.

Sift together the remaining ingredients B and add to the bowl; mix to form a dough. Rest the dough, covered with cling film, for 30 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 170˚C and grease baking trays. Divide the dough into 15 g balls. Place the dough balls, well spaced out, between two plastic sheets. Roll out thinly into 7 cm discs with a rolling pin and place onto the trays.

Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until brown and crispy. Do not over bake, or it will taste bitter. Cool completely before storing in airtight containers.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Peanut Cookies

I think Peanut Cookies must be one of the easiest cookies to make. All you need is roasted peanuts, sugar, flour, peanut oil, a pinch of salt, and a couple of egg yolks to glaze the cookies. Sounds simple, right? Well, it is and I do hope you will give this recipe a try.

Peanut Cookies
(Printable Recipe)


300 g Roasted Peanuts, ground finely
150 g Sugar
350 g All-Purpose Flour
A pinch of Sea Salt
200 ml Peanut Oil
2 Egg Yolks, beaten (for glazing)


Preheat the oven to 325˚F.

In a large mixing bowl, combine the ground peanut, sugar, flour and salt.

Add the oil to the dry mixture and mix well with a wooden spoon. Then combine the mixture with fingers to form crumbly dough.

Pinch about 15g of the dough and shape into cherry-sized balls. Then use a chopstick to make a shallow dent. Brush the dough with the beaten egg yolks.

Bake the cookies for about 22 to 25 minutes. Let cool completely before storing in an airtight container.

Makes about 90 pcs.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Spicy Pork Ribs-Dwaeji Galbi

As it’s SuperBowl weekend, I thought I’d share an “easylicious” recipe with you to enjoy with your family and friends. I will get back to cookies next.. So, this is Korean Spicy Ribs, a recipe that I adapted from the Eating Korean cookbook. I had to make two changes to the recipes i.e. substitute Korean malt syrup with honey, and roast the ribs in the oven instead of barbeque grilling them. However, if your weather permits, do fire up that grill of course. In any case, the end result was fantastic! Not overly spicy even with the amount of chili paste called for in the recipe. It will go well with your game beverage of choice. So, do consider trying this Korean style ribs for a change.

Recipe adapted from Eating Korean by Cecilia Hae-Jin Lee

Spicy Pork Ribs-Dwaeji Galbi
(Printable Recipe)


2 ½ lbs Pork Back Ribs
1 (1/2-inch) Piece Ginger Root, minced
1 Small Garlic Clove, finely chopped
½ Cup Chili Paste (Korean)
¼ Cup Korean Malt Syrup (mool yut)/(Substitute with Honey)
¼ Sugar
1 Tbsp Soy Sauce
1 ½ Tbsp Sesame Oil
½ tsp Black Pepper


Separate the ribs by cutting meat between the bones. Place in a large bowl.

Combine ginger, garlic, chili paste, malt syrup (or honey), sugar, soy sauce, sesame oil, and black pepper in a large bowl. Rub marinate generously over the meat. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

Preheat oven to 350˚F. Place the spare ribs on a large roasting tray and reserve the marinate sauce. Boil the marinate sauce and let simmer for about 5 minutes, or until the sauce has thicken slightly.

Roast the ribs for about 30 minutes and baste the meat with marinate sauce. Continue to roast for about 15 minutes. Serve warm.

Serves 5 to 6

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Pineapple Tarts-Pictorial & Video Guide-Bloggers Dinner at East Is East

Recently, I attended a bloggers dinner gathering organized by Sherman of Sherman’s Food Adventures. The gathering was pretty well received, more than 20 bloggers attended the dinner which was held at East Is East restaurant. Well done Sherman! Appreciate your invitation to join the event. I did not take any pictures that evening; but, if you are interested, please feel free to view some of the photos and a write-up about the event from Victoria (Victoria's Food Secrets), Kim ( I'm Only Here For The Food) , Jessica & Mark (Yum-O-Rama), Wilson (La Petite Vancouver), Kevin (604 Foodtography), Darina (Gratinee), Melody (Gourmet Fury), TS ([eatingclub] Vancouver), Joyce & Frank (Van Foodies), Anita (La Petite Foodie), Jenny (My Secret Garden), Jonathan (Food and Tell), and Mijune (Follow Me Foodie)

Well, the winter Olympic is just around the corner and if you are coming over to Vancouver, do consider checking out all the above bloggers’ blogs as they will definitely provide you with some great ideas to dining out in Vancouver. They have diligently scout through and reviewed all of the restaurants and eateries here in Vancouver!

Anyway, back to my Pineapple Tarts post. I posted this recipe about a year ago and received many emails asking me about the technique used to wrap and shape the tart into little pineapples. Well, here is the pictorial guide and for the first time, I am also including a video guide as well to guide you through this easy process.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Chocolate Mousse

My family enjoyed this decadent Chocolate Mousse very much. I like how the flavors from the Cointreau, espresso, and chocolate comes together. I really can’t think of a word to describe the taste of this mousse, so, I guess you simply have to make it yourself to know what I mean. :-) Do try the recipe.

Recipe adapted from Patsy's Cookbook-Classic Italian Recipes

Chocolate Mousse
(Printable Recipe)


1 ¾ Cups Heavy Cream
½ tsp Vanilla Extract
2 Tbsp Confectioners’ Sugar
1 ¼ Cups (10 oz) Semisweet Chocolate Morsels
2 Tbsp Coffee-Flavored Liqueur (such as Kahlua, Tia Maria, Marnier or Cointreau
2 Tbsp Brewed Espresso
1 Tbsp Unsalted Butter, softened at room temperature
1 Tbsp Granulated Sugar
1 Extra-Large Egg


Combine the cream, vanilla, and sugar in a large, deep bowl. Using an electric mixer or a hand beater, whip until soft peaks are formed. Refrigerate and reserve.

In the top of a double boiler, combine the chocolate morsels, coffee-flavored liqueur, espresso, butter, and granulated sugar. Cook over gently simmering hot water, stirring, just until the chocolate has melted and all the ingredients are combined. Remove from the heat.

Whip the egg in the top of a double boiler until foamy and fold into the chocolate mixture. Gently fold the reserved whipped cream into the mixture. Spoon into a serving bowl, or dessert dishes, and refrigerate for 4 hours, or until chilled and set.

Serves 4 to 6