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.
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.
Address: 135 Commercial Road, South Yarra VIC 3141 Australia.
Opening hours: Mon – Sun (6pm – 10pm)
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.
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.
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.
Crispy skin on the bottom and tenderly soft skin on the top.
Address: 148 Victoria Street, Seddon VIC 3011 Australia.
Opening hours: Tues – Sun (8 am – 5 pm), Mon (closed)
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.
Roasting a duck is a little trickier than roasting a chicken or pork belly due to the thick layer of fat underneath the duck skin. In order to obtain crispy duck skin, it is crucial to drain all the fat. Various methods have been employed to achieve thin and crispy skin duck and these includes steaming the duck over boiling water, air dry the duck for a few hours before roasting, using an air pump to separate the skin from the fat layer or pierce the skin of the duck to render all the fat. I opted for the piercing method as it is the simplest approach. The whole duck roasting and resting process took about 4 1/2 hours but I can assure you that it’s all worthwhile. The duck meat was so GOOD, moist and tender and the skin, although I would prefer it to be a tad crispier, it’s still delicious. Next time, I’ll bake it at 400 °F for 12 min instead of only 7 min for extra crispy skin.
4 hr roast duck. Extremely succulent meat.
Address: 119 – 121 Little Malop Street, Geelong VIC 3220, Australia.
Opening hours: Mon-Fri (8.30 am – 4 pm), Sat (8.30 am – 3 pm) & Sun (closed)
It’s not difficult to find a good coffee spot in Melbourne city. In fact, there are plentiful scattered around the city. I couldn’t say the same for Geelong but fortunately we have Lavish Specialty Coffee Cafe in the city. Yesterday Mr. D craved for a cup of good coffee hence we decided to drop by the cafe to fulfill his caffeine needs. The staff here are very committed and passionate in their coffee and I really enjoy watching the baristas working behind the counter, looking so engrossed in making the perfect cup of coffee for each and every one of their customers. The coffee here is strong and aromatic with just the right creaminess. When I was at the cashier paying for our drinks, I noticed a tray of fantastic looking banana and raspberry muffin on the counter. They looked too good to pass up so I ordered one to try. The muffin was so delightfully soft and paired very well with the cream and drizzles of raspberry sauce.
Mocha and banana & raspberry muffin.