Thursday, March 6, 2014 // 1:30 PM
Poached eggs probably go well with so many ingredients - asparagus, smoked salmon, cheese, salads, bacon, spinach, mushrooms, avocado, pesto, potatoes, noodles, rice, toast and the list goes on. Usually I like my poached eggs on a cheesy toast with some avocado and crispy bacon.
poached egg on and bacon on toast:
This is a simple recipe for lazy people such as myself. Instead of using a frying pan, I baked my bacon instead so that I wouldn't have to wash too many pots and pans later.
Recipe: Poached Egg and Bacon on Toast
- a poached egg
- a clove of garlic
- slice of bread
- a rasher of bacon (or more if you like)
- butter to spread on your toast (optional)
- a slice of cheddar cheese (optional)
- chopped chives (optional)
- pinch of salt
- pinch of pepper
What to do:
- Preheat oven to 210°C.
- Line a baking tray with aluminium foil.
- Slice bacon into about 3cm x 1.5cm strips and mince the garlic.
- Place your bacon strips on to the foil, making sure they aren't overlapping each other and evenly sprinkle garlic over them.
- Take your slice of bread spread a thin layer of butter on one side and place the slice of cheese over it. Place on baking tray with bacon and bake until the slice of bread is golden brown or to your liking. Remove the slice of toast from the oven and allow the bacon strips to continue baking until crisp or to your liking.
- Once bacon strips are done, arrange it on the toast and place the poached egg on top.
- Garnish with chives, spring onions or parsley.
- Add a pinch of salt and pepper before serving.
Instead of butter, I usually prefer some avocado (with a tiny squeeze of lemon) or a few roasted asparagus on my toast. When there are some cherry tomatoes, button or portobello mushrooms around, I bake that with the bacon and add it onto my toast.
A very simple and perfect start on gloomy days.
Labels: 5 minute snack, breakfast, homely eats, quick and easy, recipe
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Wednesday, March 5, 2014 // 11:01 PM
Any catch-up with a friend is an excuse for food. Like me, I'm sure many of you have walked past Kura Kura a hundred times and never even thought of trying it out. For me, this was until today when a friend and I walked out of market city for dinner and it started pouring like crazy. We just wanted to get out of the rain as soon as possible and settled on Kura Kura because it was just across the road.
We went in at 5PM without any high expectations of the food or service. We were just hungry and wet. Once we were seated, the waitress handed us an ipad for us to order our dishes. The self-ordering service on the ipad was pretty impressive. Everything was categorized and really simple to use. But even with the technology, the staff were still quick and really friendly.
nankotsu karaage ($5.00):
Deep fried cartilage chicken bones. We saw the golden brown and mouthwatering picture on the ipad so we were thinking - "Why not? Let's try something different" Well, here's why not: it was dry, the batter looked and tasted under-cooked, it didn't resemble anything of that featured in the picture. The only crunch from this entree was from the cartilage itself. I think it would have been better just to have stuck with the normal karaage chicken.
main sushi ($19.80):
The main sushi consisted of 8 pieces of nigiri, 6 pieces of small sushi rolls and 2 pieces of large sushi rolls.
They were extremely generous with the amount of salmon in our small sushi rolls. Whoever thought of the salmon and avocado combination, I can't thank you enough. Every mouthful haad smooth smelt in your mouth salmon in it. I didn't want it to end.
The sashimi (and egg) on the nigiri were simply lovely. The flesh was plump, the cut was thick and super fresh and there wasn't too much or too little rice. You just couldn't get enough of it - it was that good.
gomajiru udon ($10.50):
The gomajiru udon was a dish with home-made cold udon noodles served with a spicy sesame dipping sauce with steamed chicken. I also really liked this dish! The noodles were bouncy and the dipping sauce had a really nice tang to it. Suited the humid weather perfectly.
After doing some research on Kura Kura, I think I'll be back to try more of their dishes (especially their okonomiyaki and other cold noodle dishes!). The prices aren't bad at all. I'm also glad that unlike Kura I at the storefront, Kura Kura is a much more established restaurant with space to dine without feeling like you're on the Japanese subway during peak hours.
Kura Kura Japanese Casual Dining
Shop 3, 76 Ultimo Rd
Sydney NSW 2000
t: (02) 9212 5661
Labels: haymarket, japanese, kura kura japanese casual dining
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Monday, March 3, 2014 // 10:40 PM
Ippudo has long been the talk of the town since its opening with branches in New York, Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Taipei, Seoul, Shanghai, Hong Kong and now Sydney. The adventure to Ippudo had been delayed a couple of times simply because the weather was too hot and bit too humid for a hot steaming bowl of ramen. Now that Summer is coming to an end with rain for the past week or two, I managed to gather two friends to have ramen with me.
We arrived at 6:30 on a Monday night and were almost immediately seated. Once we stepped into the restaurant, all the staff welcomed us!
We were extremely hungry and decided to order two entrees to start the meal off.
ippudo karaage chicken ($4.00)
Three pieces of deep fried soy marinated chicken arrived on a bed of salads and was served with a wedge of lemon and some mayonnaise. The skin was so nice and crispy. Our second entree was the famous Ippudo pork buns. How could we not order them?
pork buns ($4.00):
Sandwiched between the fluffy steamed bun is a thick slice of braised pork belly, iceberg lettuce and Ippudo's original sauce. Loved it - the pork belly was just so smooth and literally melted in your mouth. The fresh iceberg lettuce made the bun look better, taste somewhat lighter from the Japanese kewpie mayo and adds a different texture to the soft pillowiness of the whole bun.
karaka men ($17.00):
The Karaka Men is noodle soup with very thin noodles and contains Ippudo's original tonkotsu broth with special spicy miso and ground pork. The spicy miso isn't too overpowering but still adds that extra spicy kick to the lovely tonkotsu broth.
akamaru shinaji tamago ($19.00):
The Akamaru Shinaji includes miso, garlic oil, pork belly, black mushrooms, bean sprouts and shallots with a rich tonkotsu broth. I loved the rich broth, fragant garlic oil and black mushrooms. These noodles felt thicker compared to the Karaka men and the broth was thick but not sickeningly rich.
I decide to go with the onsen egg instead of the flavoured egg today which is kind of like a reversed half - boiled egg. The yolk is cooked and the white is slippery and runny. The slightly cold, silky smooth eggs with a gooey yolk threatening to ooze out taste divine with the hot bowl of ramen.
I quite enjoyed the ambience and the super friendly staff of the restaurant. Although the menu is not cheap, it is definitely a worthwhile experience! I definitely want to come back and try their Shiomaru Motoaji, unagi stone pot rice and goma q.
Level 5 Westfield
Sydney 188 Pitt St
Sydney NSW 2000
t: (02) 8078 7020
Labels: ippudo, japanese, ramen, sydney cbd, westfields
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Sunday, February 23, 2014 // 9:40 PM
I'm not a big fan of shortbread cookies. I prefer having the soft and chewy type of cookies rather than the crumby sort. This was until a friend of mine introduced me to the combination of white chocolate and pistachio shortbread cookies! They were so good I had to try the recipe for myself.
I love salted pistachios! I love the taste and I love the green colour. I thought the cookies would feel really heavy and sweet with the white chocolate but the saltiness of the pistachios really pair well with the creamy white chocolate.
It's also pretty easy to make with only 4 main ingredients. You don't have to chill them either. They taste great even without the white chocolate and pistachios crumbs. I had heaps of trouble with the dough being too moist and sticky but added a few more spoonfuls of flour and they turned out fine!
They're perfect for a late afternoon or night time snack accompanied with a cup of milk.
Recipe: Pistachio and White Chocolate Shortbread Cookies
what to do:
- 125 grams unsalted butter
- 1/4 cup confectioner's sugar (you can have a little less if you don't want it to be too sweet)
- 1 1/4 cup all purpose flour (some more just in case)
- 1/3 cup white chocolate chips
- a handful of coarsely chopped pistachios.
- a small pinch of salt (if you have salted butter it's okay to leave this out)
- Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius.
- Beat the butter and sifted confectioner's sugar until well combined.
- Slowly add sifted flour to your batter till it is just combined.
- Optional: Lightly roll the dough into a ball on a well floured surfaced. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for about half an hour or until it isn't that sticky and is ready to roll).
- Otherwise; Roll out the dough on a well floured surface to about half a centimeter in thickness.
- Cut out your desired cookie shapes from the dough and evenly place them on a tray lined with baking paper.
- Bake for about 12 minutes or when the cookie edges begin to turn brown.
- Let the cookies cool on a cooling rack.
- While they are being cooled, melt your white chocolate chips in a heat resistant bowl over a small pot of boiling water.
- Once they have melted, spoon a small teaspoon of the white chocolate onto the surface of your shortbread cookies.
- While the chocolate has not set, sprinkle the pistachios over the chocolate.
- Let the chocolate set before storing them away.
I ended up making about 25 cookies with a 4.5cm diameter cookie cutter when I had only intended to make 11 or 12 cookies with half of my friend's recipe. I'll remember to use a bigger cookie cutter next time.
Labels: home made, homely eats, pistachio and white chocolate, recipe, shortbread cookies
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Wednesday, February 19, 2014 // 11:01 PM
I don't know many people who like lemon curd and I've also never been attracted to the title 'lemon curd'. Probably because of the curd part. When I think curd I picture coagulated milk in my head and that isn't pretty. It's not right at all.
You can get lemon curd at the supermarket but with just a few lemons, sugar, eggs and butter you can make a homemade version which is just as good - if not even better! I enjoy my lemon curd with a few toasted bread sticks but you can also have it with some plain pancakes or waffles.
This recipe isn't too sweet so the tangy and citrusy taste of the fresh lemons is still there.
Recipe: Lemon Curd Bread Sticks
1/3 cup brown sugar (you can add a little more if you like)
4 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice (1 or 2 lemons)
2 teaspoons of finely grated lemon zest
2 large eggs
4 slices of toast to serve with the lemon curd
what to do:
- Mix together all the ingredients in a heat resistant bowl over a pot of simmering water.
- On a medium low heat, whisk constantly until the mixture thickens.
- Remove from heat and refrigerate until cool.
- Slice each slice of toast into 4 bread sticks.
- Coat each bread stick with lemon curd to eat.
Labels: homely eats, lemon curd bread sticks, quick and easy, recipe, snacks
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