My improvised herb-stuffed tomatoes

Herb stuffed tomatoes

When I first started cooking, I would follow recipes to a tee. I would make sure I have all the ingredients, measure them carefully and read the cooking steps over and over again. Over time, as I gained confidence (and laziness) in the kitchen, I almost never use the exact ingredients and steps stated in a recipe. Continue Reading →

Spiced brown sugar cookies

inside spiced caramelised cookies

I’ve been grumpier than usual for the past two months, since my trusty coffee machine (an 8-year old De’Longhi Magnifica) broke. But I trudge along wearily and while the (painfully indecisive) hubby and I are still trying to figure out which is to be our new coffee machine, I have reverted to my tea-drinking ways.

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Crunchy cucumber and sesame salad

cucumber and sesame salad

My kids love cucumbers. My little cucumber-eating champ of a 21-month old daughter, who still only has barely ten teeth (why?!), always impresses me with the alarming amount of cuke she manages to put away at each sitting. Although it’s super easy to just thinly slice up a cucumber and feed it to them, I am always keen on introducing exciting textures and tastes to their budding palates. Using the vegetable peeler to create long ribbons of cucumber not only makes it more delicate and tender for the little ones, but the salad also looks elegant enough to serve as a starter or side at a dinner party. The children had this crisp salad for lunch today with fluffy Japanese rice and a simple steamed egg custard, but it would be equally great as a refreshing accompaniment to a fillet of spicy grilled fish. Continue Reading →

DIY snack: vegan summer rolls with mango dipping sauce

Vegan summer rolls

I have been contributing to Chubby Hubby for almost a year. During this time, I have been secretly and subtly trying to introduce the wonderful world of vegetables to you. And I really thought no one would notice. Recently I met up with Charmaine, our incredible editor at Chubby Hubby and she mentioned that almost all the recipes that I contributed are vegetarian or vegan. Busted. Continue Reading →

Orangette’s seriously chocolatey chocolate cake

chocolate cake

I picked up Molly Wizenberg (of Orangette)’s book over a year ago when I was preggers, following J around on his work trips and doing nothing very much apart from putting away spectacular amounts of food (especially cakes and sweets) and devouring large quantities of food narratives, which often come with lovely recipes. Continue Reading →

Strawberry bread that’s also a cake

strawberry bread

My darling aunt celebrated her 50th birthday recently. I understand that women generally prefer to not discuss their age, much less have it revealed to the world via a blog post. For this disservice, I’m prepared to receive a phone call from her right about now, to holler threats about cutting me out of her will. But hey, she looks better than most women a decade younger, so where’s the shame? If I turn out half as good as her when I reach this milestone, I’d be unabashedly shouting my age from rooftops. Anyhow, me being her favourite (read: only) niece, I decided that she deserves a splendid dinner and of course, a brilliant cake. Continue Reading →

Packed lunch – open-faced egg sandwich

Open-face-egg-sandwich1

During my recent trip to Norway and Denmark, I discover the Scandinavians consume a lot of open-faced sandwiches for their lunches. One of the Danish cafés, Aamanns, that I visited specialises in open-faced sandwiches or what the Danish called smørrebrød. They simply take a plain piece of rye bread and pimp it up by topping it with seasonal produce and make it delicious. The combination of the fillings is genius yet uncomplicated. Continue Reading →

A fun and happy meal: coconut buns with hoisin mushrooms and vegetables

Coconut buns, hoisin mushroom and vegetablesAs a home cook who cooks almost every day, thinking about what to prepare for lunch or dinner can sometimes be a tiresome affair. Though I have a mini repertoire of dishes that I have on rotation, I know that sooner or later, I will get bored, frustrated and give up cooking (okay, maybe not that serious). Continue Reading →

World Peace cookies

cookie stack

I’ve found a new pen pal in my editor, Charmaine, who’s based in Hong Kong. We write each other about once a week, mostly just girl/mommy talk, but discussions inadvertently find their way back to food. One of our latest topics has been what we bake when we need a little pick-me-up, something that lifts our spirits on a dowdy day, or a sweet treat when we are simply in a gluttonous mood. Continue Reading →

One-pot wonder: cauliflower and red lentil soup

chunky cauliflower soup

The hubby and I are hoping to lose a few, seeing as we basically haven’t stopped eating since the Christmas season last year. Soups have been our go-to lunches since the amount of liquid in them deceive us into thinking we are full just after one big bowl. To my surprise one day, the hubby requested for cauliflower soup. Some time back, I cooked a roasted garlic and cauliflower dish with cheddar cheese melted over. It got him loving the veg, and he has since been on kind of a cauliflower bender. Continue Reading →

A crowd pleaser – Nids de tartiflette – cheese and potato nests

Nids de tartiflette_2Whenever I plan a meal, I will usually look at what happens to be available in my fridge or pantry, and cook up the meal from what’s already there. I rarely buy a truckload of ingredients to make that one dish. However, if I happen to chance upon an ingredient that I have been dying to try, I will make that effort. This time, I got my hands on a stinky French cheese, Reblochon* and I am certainly super excited about using it. Continue Reading →