Monday, 24 November 2014

Thai Green Papaya Salad

Oh my goodness, so we clearly didn't think that clearly when we had a BBQ the weekend just gone in this 30 degree weather. Heat from the BBQ + heat from the weather? With little to no shade, it wasn't the brightest of ideas, but we coped! Luckily for me, I had this dish on the table to offset the heat.  

Friday, 21 November 2014

Longan with Silky Soft Soybean Milk Agar

I'm probably waxing on about the fact its SO hot, and that it is muggy, and the heat, and how hot it is, and it's gross, and hot, and sticky, and goodness, someone throw me in the nearest pool already! As you may know, it is technically classified as SPRING here in the sunshine state called Queensland. But as someone said to me once, there is no Spring or Winter - just Summer and Autumn! Which in all fairness, is a fairly accurate representation of the weather behaviour here.  

So here we are, in Spring, with temperatures soaring to 35 degree averages already, and I am in a corner sweating like the proverbial pig. The mere thought of stepping out to hang out my laundry, or the 10 metres it takes me to walk to my car when I need to pick up the kids, puts the fear of men into me. In short, the smallest things that require me to be subjected to the direct heat makes me run for the hills! As a result, I've been hunting down for a treat to cool myself off with.  

Thursday, 20 November 2014

Thai influenced Pineapple salad

Summer has well and truly plonked its big, fat, stinkin' hot bum smack bang in the middle of Queensland. It's only November you say? Summer can't be here yet you say? Don't get me wrong, I prefer the heat over the cold, but goodness, when you stand in the open hoping a gentle cooling breeze will waft over you, and you get a suffocating warm wind instead, I feel like I've been duped! 

Nevertheless, summer does bring great tans, amazing moods, and the opportunity to not think too hard about what to wear, because no one is going to judge you when you wear next to nothing in 35 degree weather! Another great thing is salads. SO obsessed with salads during summer. It's like the perfect accompaniment to summer I think.  

Often during summer, I don't feel like having any kind of heavy meal (let alone cooking it in a hot kitchen...) and all I want to do after a hard day at work is to sink into the couch and snack on something cold and refreshing while perusing TV or a trashy magazine (don't judge, I know you do it too!). Sadly that scenario has been left far behind in my single hey days, and nowadays, I have to be the good role-model and have dinner at the dining table.  But, but, but! That doesn't mean I have to forget about my beloved salads. This is where this Thai influenced pineapple salad enters.

Sunday, 9 November 2014

Sweet Potato Jelly

You might have seen these little golden balls floating around in some of my dessert soups as of late.  They're certainly a little different, but very tasty.  My sister-in-law introduced me to these sweet, chewy balls of jelly when we visited Kuching last year. They are originally from Taiwan and usually served with their sweet desserts.  

Since coming home from Kuching, I thought I would try and make some as my boys are quite partial to them (and secretly, me too!!). I would normally add these to Bubur Cha Cha or White Fungus Sweet Soup just to give some added texture and colour.

Tuesday, 4 November 2014

Steamed NZ Hoki Fillets

Nothing screams Asian than fresh fish, steamed to perfection, flaking perfectly and drizzled with fresh fragrant herbs.  Steamed fish is usually a whole fish of some sort, bone and all. There are only a few type of fish that my two boys will eat - predominantly NZ fish like snapper and hoki. As much as I would like to broaden their horizon in terms of fish, it is hard to come by fresh whole fish here in Brisbane. Trying the local fish store has left me disappointed with their lack of freshness, and even those that are swimming around in tanks seem to impart a strong muddy taste, which if I can taste, the boys will surely taste too. So alas, my fresh whole fish is very far and few in between. I've now resorted to either buying frozen fillets or trek out to the markets and hope that one of the stalls have caught some fresh NZ fish.