Sous-Vide your pork belly for the perfect texture

sousvidepork

Weekdays can be tough for us amateur cooks. As much as we’d like to spend the day prepping something fresh and wonderful to serve one’s family for dinner, the reality is our jobs kind of get in the way. That’s why I do a lot of cooking on weekends, making things that I know won’t lose any flavour or freshness when frozen and defrosted several days later. One of the best methods for cooking this way is sous-vide. Continue Reading →

The Best Steamboat I have Ever Eaten, Man Fu Yuan

MFY-flambe

There are some friends who you simply trust explicitly when it comes to food recommendations. My friend L is one such person. So when she raved about the best steamboat meal she’d ever had, and added the caveat that she had been introduced to this gastronomic revelation by none other than Wong Ah Yoke, chief food critic of The Straits Times, the main English newspaper here in Singapore, I knew it was something I had to try for myself. And soon. Continue Reading →

Our lovely contributors & hello to Lizzie Loel

montage

As the editor of Aun’s fantastic blog here at Chubby Hubby, one of the things I enjoy doing most is getting to know our fabulous contributors. Our contributors come from all walks of life – including marketing and creative folks, working mums (including S, Aun’s wife) who juggle a full time work schedule and still manage to turn out restaurant quality meals, as well as people who work in the corporate sector – all of whom take time out from their busy schedules (no doubt eating all the way) to share their eating and travel experiences, varied recipes and life in general with us and our readers.

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choPSuey cafe, cool, kitsch Chinesey food in Singapore

chopsuey-orange-beef

To be honest, I had kind of avoided Chopsuey Cafe when it first opened. Early reviews by both press and bloggers weren’t entirely favorable. But, a few months ago, my sister-in-law J, who has impeccable taste, recommended that we go there for brunch. And I’m so glad she did. Since then, I’ve been back several times, each time becoming more and more enamored with this elegant yet oh-so-kitschy restaurant tucked away in a corner in Dempsey Hill. In the end, I’ve come to the conclusion that all of those critics who pooh-poohed this marvelous little Chinesey eatery, well, just simply didn’t get it. Continue Reading →

Wines to go with Chinese New Year feasts

Chinese Roast Duck

As we usher in the year of the snake, the most important event for many of us is the reunion dinner. In Singapore, where families are typically small, most people would be spending their Chinese (or Lunar) New Year’s eve dinner at home with a home-cooked spread. That usually works for me too. But this year, to spare our homemakers from pre and post meal slaving over the kitchen stoves, we have included our extended families to come together for an eight course feast. I believe a bottle of wine ought to be in order.

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A homage to Xiao Long Bao – Chinese soup dumplings

Like many people, I first discovered xiao long bao in a famous Taiwanese restaurant called Din Tai Fung. I don’t usually eat in chain restaurants, but I do make an exception for this New York Times rated, Michelin starred eatery which is famous for its xiao long bao. And so after first experiencing the steamy, soupy, pork-filled wonders of xiao long bao for the first time, I became obsessed. Now, it is one of those things I must have weekly or somehow I feel deprived.Xiao long bao means “small steaming purse or basket” in Mandarin, which is a very factual description of a magical dish. These dumplings are traditionally filled with small pork meatballs (although you can find chicken, vegetable and seafood nowadays), and are encased in a thin, translucent dumpling shell with a savory broth within. Continue Reading →

Pantry Basics: Homemade XO Sauce

Homemade XO sauce

I’d never really thought about making XO sauce—a deliciously spicy and umami condiment that first gained popularity in Hong Kong in the Eighties—in the past because the process seemed mysteriously complex. Generally consisting of dried scallops and shrimp paired with chillies, and a blend of shallots and garlic, the recipe for most signature XO sauces served at famous Chinese restaurants are closely guarded. Continue Reading →

Family Food: Steamed Savoury Custard Master Recipe

zheng shui dan

Whether I’m making chawanmushi (茶碗蒸しwhich broadly means ‘steamed in a teacup’ but specifically refers to Japanese steamed savoury custard), zheng shui dan (蒸水蛋 or steamed eggs), egg tofu or a savoury custard of my own invention, my base ratio for the custard ingredients is 1 egg to 100ml liquid. With this master recipe, the custard consistently retains a meltingly delicate quiver that possibly accounts for its comforting, nursery-food like qualities. And it takes just 20 minutes to steam. Continue Reading →