Tomato ketchup omelette? What’s that?!

“You’re making tomato ketchup omelette?” …. long pause … “What’s that?” That was our reaction when we found out what’s for dinner.

My dear friend J invited us over to her flat for a girlie evening in. She made some simple home cooked meal. Simple but delicious. She introduced us to what she calls it ‘tomato ketchup omelette’. That’s right! It’s not just omelette with tomatoes, but there’s tomato ketchup in it as well! None of us has any idea what it is. But it turned out to be my favourite dish of the night. It was pretty easy to make. So I watched and learn. We were just standing and watching while she prepares everything. The only thing I helped out was to cook the lettuce then add in some oyster sauce and sesame oil. That was pretty easy compared to her, cooking four dishes for just the three of us. It was a really good night with loads of food, watched six continuous episodes of Gossip Girls and having a laugh. That’s not it, we are girls who eat a lot. After that mountain of food we had with rice, honey melon followed then came the cracker steamed cake I made. I will share recipes of the cake later. For now, make some omelette and hope you like it as much as I do.

Tomato ketchup omelette and stir fried British sweetheart cabbage

TOMATO KETCHUP OMELETTE RECIPE

I would now like to share this special recipe of my first attempt to make J’s tomato ketchup omelette with you. The measurements of ingredients aren’t critical. It is just a rough guide. So cook it to your taste. Cook and taste, cook and taste.

  • 3 large tomatoes (quartered)
  • 3 large eggs
  • a pinch of ground white pepper
  • 3 tbs tomato ketchup
  • 4 tbs water
  • 1 tbs sugar
  1. Heat a tablespoon of oil on the pan.
  2. Put the tomatoes in the pan until they soften a little.
  3. While the tomatoes are in the pan, beat the eggs with a pinch of ground white pepper.
  4. Pour in the beaten eggs. Wait until it is half cooked then flip to cook the other side.
  5. Add in the tomato ketchup, sugar and water.
  6. Let it simmer for a little while and plate up.

Note : The beauty of this dish is that it does not have to be a perfectly round omelette. In fact, it’s better that you break them up so the eggs are coated with sweet sauce.

———-

STIR FIRED CABBAGE RECIPE

  • 4 leaves of British sweetheart cabbage (finely sliced)
  • 3 cloves garlic (chopped)
  • 1 carrot (sliced)
  • ground white pepper
  • light soy sauce
  1. Heat the pan with some oil. Fry the garlic until fragrant.
  2. Add in the sliced carrots then the cabbage.
  3. Add in a pinch of ground white pepper and some light soy sauce to taste.

Note : You can use any cabbage of your choice.

Tip : If you’re not having this dish with the omelette above, cook an egg with the cabbage. They go well together. Step 4: Push the cabbage to the side of the pan. Break an egg in the middle. Fold in the cabbage when egg is almost done. mix them all together and serve.

Pleasure induced sunday

For any of you who love chocolate, you must have checked out Chocolate Unwrapped at Vinopolis in London last weekend. I’m no chocolate connoisseur but I love my chocolates! So I was there for some amazing chocolate experience. What is better than spending the whole of Sunday tasting chocolates from the few top chocolatiers, all under one roof!

Chocolate Unwrapped’ by Chocolate Week

The minute we enter, there’s a section about cacao beans and then the many chocolatiers showcasing their chocolates. We were so distracted by the beautiful displays of chocolates. In no time, all three of us girlies started tasting chocolates. We were obviously too engrossed with the many chocolates we were surrounded by that we missed the scheduled ‘Chocolate Tasting’ talk by Seventypercent. But we managed to catch the last bit of the session and learn a little something.

The three important steps for when you taste chocolates.

  1. Smell – Always smell before tasting. It smells different from the taste.
  2. Melt – Let it melt on your tongue and identify the flavour.
  3. Length – The better the chocolate the longer it lingers in your mouth. The taste changes through time.

There were a few chocolate brands that I would like to mention. I was so happy that Cacao Sampaka was here. I was looking for the main shop the second time I was in Barcelona but could not find it. I was probably distracted by the other activity my dear friend had in place for me. And my excitement still remains after tasting their chocolates; chocolate coated raspberry, blackberry chocolate bar and ‘gin & tonic’ chocolate bar. All were wonderful.

Melt‘s ‘smoke’ chocolate bar is worth mentioning. They are made from cacao beans grown near a volconic region. It has a subtle smokiness with a little hint of bacon. Bacon tasting chocolate? Try it and you’ll know what I meant.

Then there is Nicky Grant’s pretty and skilfully decorated cake. I want that cake!! It’ll be perfect for a wedding. It is the sort of cake any girl would want to have for their wedding.

For those of you with bumps on your tummy, there is also something for a baby shower. Patchi does the cutest little boxed chocolates. Of course, they don’t only do that for baby showers. They are perfect for all sorts of events as thank you gifts; boxed and adorned with any flower or deco you wish.

For baby girl

For baby boy

Too much of writing about chocolate is making me feel like going for a chocolate spa. That’ll be bliss!! In the mean time, I’m set to finding my favourite chocolate bar; ‘THE ONE’. Going to stock up some good chocolates soon.

Abundance of strawberries

The abundance of strawberries calls for strawberry sorbet! Or anything refreshing with strawberries in them. Even my nails are painted red, strawberry red! The first strawberry treat I made this season is the strawberry sorbet. It’s definitely refreshing for such warm days. Cool you down to your ends. If you do not have time to make sorbet, have the strawberries with some champagne. That’ll do the trick! And if alcohol isn’t your cup of tea, have them with cream! Enjoy the strawberry filled summer!
STRAWBERRY SORBET
  • 450g hulled strawberries
  • 4 tbsp sugar syrup
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
Method:
  1. Make some sugar syrup with 1/3 cup sugar and 1/2 cup water. Heat until sugar melts and thicken. Leave to cool and then chill in the fridge.
  2. Blend the strawberries, sieve and put them in a countainer to chill in the fridge.
  3. When both sugar syrup and strawberries are chilled, take them out of the refrigerator.
  4. Add 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar into the chilled blended strawberries.
  5. Add in 4 tbsp of sugar syrup into the mixture and mix well. (The amount of syrup depends on your sweetness preference. Make sure it’s slightly sweeter than the optimum as it reduces sweetness once frozen)
  6. Pour the mixture into a container and leave it in the freezer for 3 hours.
  7. Then take them out and blend it well to get rid of the ice crystals for a smooth sorbet.
  8. Put it back into the freezer until it’s well frozen.

Chocolate cupcake surprise with rose chantilly

This cupcake was initially made as a surprise birthday treat for a dear friend but I ended up being ill. So it wasn’t much of a surprise anymore when we had it. But it was still as yummy as ever. I’ve named it a cupcake surprise not because it was made as a surprise gesture. There is actually lychee in the middle of the cupcake, well hidden for a surprise bite. This was inspired by my favourite Ispahan from Ladurée. The heavenly Ispahan was initially created by Pierre Hermé for Ladurée. It is a perfect combination of rose, raspberries and lychee. I have yet to taste the Ispahan from Pierre Hermé so you would have guessed where my first stop will be when I am in Paris next.

These are the photos I’ve got for this batch. I forgot to cut up the cupcake for a picture revealing that hidden surprise, but will definitely add on that missing picture the next time I make this again.

CHOCOLATE CUPCAKE SURPRISE WITH ROSE CHANTILLY

adapated from Béa’s Cupcakes au chocolat, à la lavande

For the rose chantilly

  • 2 tbsp rose flavouring (i used..)
  • 240ml (1 cup) double cream
  • a tiny drop of red colouring (optional to give it a light pink colour)
  • icing sugar (added to your sweetness preference)

Method:

  1. Add the rose flavouring and colouring into the double cream
  2. Whip the double cream while slowly adding some icing sugar to your sweetness preference until it reaches soft peak

For the cupcakes

(makes 12 medium sizes)

  • 57g (2oz) dark chocolate (70% cocoa)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 82g (6tbp) butter
  • 98g (1/2 cup) sugar
  • 30g (1/4 cup) flour
  • 1 tbsp cocoa powder, unsweetened
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • a pinch of salt
  • 3 large lychees cut into quarters
  • 12 raspberries to decorate

Method:

  1. Preheat oven at 180°C (350°F)
  2. Cut the butter in small pieces and chop the chocolates coarsely. Place them in a bowl and melt them in a bain marie
  3. Put the bowl away from heat once melted. Add sugar and mix gently until dissolve. Let rest for few minutes
  4. Continue to mix for about 5 minutes
  5. Add one egg at a time and mix until well blended
  6. Sift flour, cocoa powder and baking powder and add them into the mixture with the salt
  7. Mix well but not too much
  8. Take cupcake moulds (paper or silicone) and fill them 3/4 to the top.
  9. Add a quarter of lycee and push it in to the centre, making sure the mixture covers the lychee.
  10. Cook for about 25 minutes (the cupcakes are cooked when the blade of a sharp knife comes out clean)
  11. Remove from the oven and let cool down.
  12. Decorate cupcakes with the rose chantilly. Use a piping bag. If you don’t have one, just carefully scoop them onto the cupcakes.
  13. Finally, top the chantilly with raspberries.

NOTE:

Keep these cupcakes well hidden as one will not be enough. I had my friend bring some home and he finished all three of them in one go. For that reason, I was accused of making him fat! =)

Cupcakes au chocolat, chantilly à la lavande

Mee rebus & sambal aubergine

One fine Sunday I invited a couple of friends over, and decided to make some Malaysian food that is easy and yummy. The first thing I did was to look for recipes; and which is a better blog for good Malaysian food recipes than my favourite site, ‘rasamalaysia’. Off I go, and found one of the easiest recipe, also the food I miss. MEE REBUS!! Wonderful! Best of all, the method of making this is so brief, I looked at it again to make sure i did not misread it.

Mee rebus. Click here for the recipe.

Look at the picture! Doesn’t it look authentic? It tastes good as well, even without the prawn fritters. I was too lazy to deep fry anything so left that out =P.  I cooked sambal aubergine instead. Cut the aubergines and put them in salted water so they don’t turn brown. Heat the wok with some oil and fry some chopped onions and dried shrimps until fragrant, then add in the sambal made earlier for the mee rebus. Add in the aubergines and cook until they soak in the juices but not too soft. Voila! Done! Sprinkle some chopped spring onions to serve.

Sambal aubergine

Long weekend with ‘peach & chamomile mousse cake’

The long awaited bank holiday weekend has finally arrived. Most people will be out of town or be doing something more interesting. But I’ve opted for a quieter day in. No alarm clock! Just wake up whenever I’m all charged up, be a total slop wearing my pjs most of the day until I sink into a warm fruity bubble bath. But of course with clean teeth. Can’t have my lovely hot choc in my morning breath. =) Took out my well loved Bodum milk frother to froth hot milk for a thick cuppa hot chocolate! Yumm…

…reading on my balcony in the perfect weather of blue sky with white fluffy clouds and a good view

This is a very special bank holiday weekend! My dear flatmate has guestSss over at ours for more than a month. It is as if, they’ve taken over my flat, with fully stocked up fridge with little space left for my food and kitchen top filled with food as well. There’s so much food, you’d think they are planning to hibernate for a quarter of a year! And I don’t even have space and tele to wind down after work. Guess who’s been hogging the tele! So this particular weekend is when all of them including my flatmate are out of town!! How lovely! I finally have the place to myself and relax all I want. But before I start doing all that, a thorough cleaning was needed!

It felt more like home after some cleaning and tidying! Time for brunch then!! Big fat juicy mushrooms with scrambled eggs and toast with butter…  forgot baked beans but it doesn’t matter. The main ingredients were all present. Once I was well fed, it was time to make some indulgent dessert, the ‘Peach and camomile mousse cake’! It’s a recipe I got from the lovely blog, Tartelette with her ever so attractive photos.

…my attempt of the peach and chamomile mousse cake…

My mousse cake turned out quite well although it didn’t set as well as I’d like them to. I used gelatin sheets instead of the powdered form she used so maybe four films wasn’t enough. The mousse layers on hers is more differentiated whereas the peach colour on mine was a little lighter so I’ve added a drop of red colouring to make it more vibrant. What’s most important, it looks lovely and tastes heavenly. My dear friend who was lucky enough to try this cake went mmmmm…. mmmmm… and more mmmm…. finished with a big smile on the face! That makes me happy!

…bliss.. does include sinking in to a warm cranberry bubble bath.. =) would be even better if the bathroom has a lovely view instead of just 4 blocks of walls..

I was thinking of bringing some of these mousse cakes to work but one of my colleague is a vegetarian. So she won’t be able to have anything with gelatin. Since there were extra lemon olive oil cake that was yielded from the cake recipe, I’ve created something out of it. I  sandwiched it with strawberry jam and topped with slices of peach. It was a lovely combination. The peach slices bring out the olive oil flavour.

Benihana

We were very well greeted at the King’s Road branch of Benihana. The staff were friendly and showed us to a very spacious waiting area with a bar to wait for the rest of our mates to arrive. The initial vibe was good until we were served the onion soup. It was so salty, it tasted like MSG soup and when the chef came to the table to cook our food, I was initially slightly taken away by the fire spectacle but later found it overly fussed. Too much drama.

For the price you pay, even with the toptable promotion, I wouldn’t recommend this place for the food but I would understand how some people might like this restaurant for the entertainment sake. If you you are a group who likes some food tossed into your mouth, you’ll most likely like it here.  Just be prepared to come out of the restaurant smelling like food.

The fire spectacle on the hibachi grill