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Boiled Chicken with Ginger Scallion Sauce

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Most of you must know that to cook a good Hainanese Chicken Rice (海南雞飯) or White Cut Chicken (白斬雞) involves a lot of work. These are the dishes that we can easily order in a Chinese restaurant but not to cook by yourself. This  is why we haven’t had a chance to make the Hainanese Chicken Rice yet. But to satisfy the craving for Chicken Rice, this is a trick that we learn to do. We only buy the chicken breast and thighs, not the whole chicken, then just steam or boil the chicken parts. Cool down in a icy bath and chop up the chicken into pieces.

You can either choose to steam the chicken or boil the chicken. The appearance might not be as nice as what you can get from the restaurant, however this is definitely an easy chicken dish that you want to learn. The most important thing is to make a dipping sauce to go with it. You can serve the chicken with chicken flavored rice or plain white rice.

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Yellow Curry

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Yellow curry is another kind of Thai curry, commonly found in the Thai restaurants in Los Angeles here. Comparing with other Thai curries, yellow curry is normally creamier and richer. This is because coconut cream is being used instead of coconut milk. However, I preferred watery curry instead of a creamy one, so I used the coconut milk this time.

Potato is a must-have ingredient to be added in the yellow curry as I heart potato for life. Who doesn’t? Other than potato, I put in okra (lady’s fingers), carrot and red chili peppers as well to give it a more colorful version.

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Boiled Eggplant with Sauce

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I like eggplant. We often pick up eggplants from the market for cooking. Many times we ended upcooking our own recipe of Szechuan Spicy Eggplant with Minced Pork , or omitted the spiciness for a simple version of Stir Fry Eggplant with Minced Pork. However I know not many people like eggplant maybe because of its texture, it will get mushy if it is overcooked. Or maybe they just don’t know how to handle eggplant.

Eggplant is really weird kind of vegetable or fruit. It has spongy texture and slight bitterness when raw. What I normally will do to prep the eggplant is cut it into pieces then soak and rinse with salt water. This will soften the texture for faster cooking and also help to reduce the amount of oil that absorbs in the eggplant when cooking.

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Hakka Stir Fry Taro Dumpling “Suan Pan Zi” (客家炒算盤子)

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We love taro a lot and we were thinking to make the Pork Belly with Taro which Eric wanted to eat all these while. But it requires too much of work and then it was often put aside. While I was researching about the dish, I stumbled across this long forgotten Hakka recipe Stir Fry Taro Dumpling or Abacus Beads “Suan Pan Zi”(客家炒算盤子). I was so excited as I didn’t have this for years. So I have decided to give the recipe a try. Obviously Pork Belly with Taro was put aside again.

Since my father side is Hakka, that’s why I know of and have tried this dish. We often get to eat various traditional Hakka dishes whenever we go back to “Semenyih”, our old home town (老家) in Malaysia. My uncle is a great cook and he will always prepare a big meal, like 8-10 dishes sometimes double the dishes because we have so many relatives visiting.

In Chinese the dish is called 炒算盤子 “Chao Suan Pan Zi”, literally means Stir Fry Abacus Beads. The taro is steamed and prepared into dough form then shaped into round balls resembling the beads on the Chinese Abacus, an old calculating tool before calculator.

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Green Curry

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If you’re not tired of Thai curries, here is another one for you – green curry. I am so into the Thai curries lately after I started off with panang curry and then red curry. The green curry is hotter than panang curry and it tends to be as hot as red curry. The names of most Thai curries are derived by their colors such as red curry and yellow curry. So does the green curry.

The cooking method of green curry is similar as the previous Thai curries. No fancy skills are needed for this dish. You might need to know the right ingredients to go well with the curry. Eggplant is always a good ingredient to go with Thai curries or some Asian curries. I used it in the green curry this time together with green bean. The result was great and it was cooked as yummy as those in Thailand.

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Lama Kitchen is a food and cooking blog fills with savory food with great cooking recipes and ideas for those of you who love food and home cooked meals. Read more