Italian Breakfast Banana Bread

I absolutely adore banana bread! I was delighted when I found a banana bread recipe while I was flipping through Nigella’s recipe book (thank you Goon!). Initially, I was a bit concern that Nigella added a few teaspoons of instant espresso powder in the banana bread ingredients. I was afraid that the coffee would overwhelm the banana taste but luckily it didn’t. The espresso gives the bread a nice aroma yet not too overpowering and complements really well with the banana taste.

After letting it cool for 30 minute, I couldn’t resist and took a slice. I was so disappointed with it as I couldn’t taste any banana flavor. I was thinking to myself who is going to finish the rest as I don’t like to waste my stomach space on something that taste bad. The following day, I couldn’t find anything in the house for breakfast except for the banana bread that I baked the day before. I was hungry so I forcefully took a slice for breakfast and was glad that I did as it was surprisingly good. The banana flavor intensified over night and it was super moist. I brought some to my workplace to share with my colleagues and they loved it. So, it is important to follow Nigella’s advise, let the banana bread stand for a day after baking! IMG_7638 Continue reading

Advertisements

Salmon Fish Head Bee Hoon (Rice Vermicelli in Fish Head Soup)

In Malaysia, fish heads are frequently used in curries and in stock for noodle soup. I know, some of you would probably feel squeamish about eating fish heads but according to the Chinese elderly, fish heads are actually very nutritious, especially the eyeballs. They believe that eating the fish eyeball will improve one’s vision. I’m not sure how true is that but it doesn’t matter to me. It being nutritious is not the reason I like it. I enjoy fish heads mainly because they are so flavorful. This is especially true for salmon fish head due to its high fat content. Malaysians love their fish head and this is why it is super expensive back home. Fortunately for us, not many people in Australia knows how to appreciate fish head and therefore it is quite cheap here.

Fish head bee hoon is a very comforting dish and it is great in cold weather. The soup is extremely appetizing with slight sourish taste from the pickled mustard green and tomato. The stock has a really nice aroma as the fish head pieces are deep fried first before they are boiled in the water.

IMG_7575Slurp!~

Continue reading

Profiteroles with Lemon Cream Filling

Profiteroles/cream puffs are the perfect finger food for any parties or any functions as they are simple to make, use simple ingredients (doesn’t require anything fancy) but taste amazingly delicious. I love making these crowd-pleaser dessert whenever I have pot luck or gathering with my friends. The addition of lemon zest into the cream mixture exudes nice zingy lemon aromas that fill your mouth. It is crucial to cook the cream filling mixture until the right consistency is achieved. You can test the mixture consistency by lifting up the whisk over the bowl and the cream should flow down in a continuous ribbon fashion. Mixture that is too runny will make the puffs soggy and if it’s too thick, it’s difficult to pipe into the puffs and. it is also important to take note of the heat when cooking your cream mixture. To obtain silky smooth cream and to avoid curdle, always cook the pastry cream over low heat and stir constantly.

6480_103610963982_3966370_n

Continue reading

Ku Lo Yuk (Sweet and Sour Pork)

I have not been updating PonPeKo ever since I started work in February. I truly wanted to keep PonPeKo alive but my tiredness and laziness got best of me. Truth be told, we still haven’t finish unpacking the boxes in our kitchen. Most of my baking utensils are still sitting in the boxes and hence I do not have any dessert materials to post lately. Moreover, since moving up here, it’s really easy to find places with excellent food and desserts which leads to more procrastination from my side. Hmm, I really need to stop procrastinating and get everything unpacked as soon as possible. Be more disciplined, Yang!

Today, I would like to share my favorite economy rice dish with you. If you’re not familiar with the term “economy rice”, it’s basically a food stall that sells a selection of dishes ranging from various meat, vegetables, fish, and curries. You can pick any dish and as many dishes as you like to have them as accompaniment to rice. Economy rice is very popular in Malaysia as it’s cheap and good. Ku Lo Yuk is one of the popular dish and it is sold in every economy rice stall. It’s not too difficult to make, just make sure that you don’t add in too much cornflour to avoid the coating of the pork becoming too floury. Try to avoid using canned pineapples in syrup as they are overly sweet. Canned pineapples in natural juices are better as they have the slight tanginess which complements the sauce in this dish.

IMG_7491

Continue reading

Gaijin

Address: 135 Commercial Road, South Yarra VIC 3141 Australia.

Opening hours: Mon – Sun (6pm – 10pm)

IMG_1053

First of all, sorry for being absent from my blog for the past four weeks. I was extremely busy with my job and house hunting. It’s not easy to find a rental place in suburbs closer to Melbourne compared to regional areas like Geelong. It was a very frustrating experience as I found that most of the photos posted didn’t represent the current state of the house accurately when I went to inspect. It’s such a waste of my time. Anyways, fortunately now everything had been resolved and I can finally continue sharing my foodie stories with you.

IMG_1058

Today, I would like to introduce you to a Japanese fusion restaurant called Gaijin. My friends Mei & Sheng brought me here for dinner and I had a ball at the restaurant. Our dinner started with seaweed salad and adegashi tofu. The seaweed salad is just my type of food, sourish and sweetish which is the perfect appetizer dish. This dish may look simple but contains great flavors and texture which made it my favorite dish of the night. Adegashi tofu was good as well with its crunchy skin and fragrant broth. The ahi tuna tartare (raw tuna cubes marinated in special sauce served with mango salsas and mango on nori tempura chips) was quite an interesting concept but somehow the taste was just average for me.

Continue reading

Guotie (Pot sticker)

Jiaozi is a Chinese dumpling and it is a hot favorite among Chinese households. Jiaozi can be steamed, boiled, or pan fried. The pan fried version is known as guotie (pot stickers) or gyoza in Japan. As the name implies, the dumpling stuck slightly to the wok at the end of cooking but it could be easily removed by nudging it using a spatula.

While jiaozi filling commonly consists of meat and/or vegetables, there’s no limit to what you can add in it. You can make the filling with the ingredients you like/have on hand. Both taste and textures are very important in dumpling making. For me, I love to add shitake mushrooms, carrots, and wombok leaves together with the mince pork to produce different textures (bitey and crunchy). The filling smells and taste wonderful with the addition of seasonings such as sesame oil, shaoxing wine, good quality soy sauce, grated ginger, and garlic. The wrapper and wrapping style for guotie is different from deep fried wontons. Guotie wrappers are white in color, round-shaped, and thicker compared to wonton wrappers. My first jiaozi attempt which was 3 years ago was unsuccessful and I ended up with disintegrated dumplings as I did not seal the dumpling properly. Make sure you pinch the edges of the dumpling firmly so that they won’t break apart when cooking.

IMG_7277

Crispy skin on the bottom and tenderly soft skin on the top.

Continue reading

Seddon Deadly Sins Cafe

Address: 148 Victoria Street, Seddon VIC 3011 Australia.

Opening hours: Tues – Sun (8 am – 5 pm), Mon (closed)

IMG_7282

We were up in Melbourne last Saturday to do a bit of shopping. On the way there, we stopped by Seddon Deadly Sins cafe in Footscray for our brekkie. Finding a parking space was easy as there are plenty of free 2P parking lots around the area. As soon as we walked into the cafe, we were greeted by a friendly waiter, he ushered us to our table, and took our drinks order. We were then given a menu and it took me quite a while to decide what I wanted to eat as every item on the menu sounds very interesting and yummy. In the end, I decided to go with the Spanish eggs while Mr. D ordered the croquettes from the specials.

IMG_7280

Continue reading