Ingredients Archives: Salt

White Turnip Cake

When I was small, my grandma used to make a lot of Chinese traditional snacks and sweets during Chinese New Year. Fried dumplings and fried Chinese sweets balls are the most popular in our family.

There are many snacks that are only available during Chinese New Year. When I was a kid, I would eat until I could not eat anymore. And all of my family members would gather to have a big dinner filled with our favourite food. My memories of Chinese New Year have always been very sweet: Something that I would cherish forever. Now that Chinese New Year is approaching even though I am not in Hong Kong, I am trying to make some of these snacks to recreate the festive atmosphere.

Since I don’t have a sweet tooth, I tend to make savoury snacks. White Turnip Cake is a popular choice. I started to make my own Turnip Cake since last Chinese New Year. Before that, I helped my mum and grandma to make the Turnip Cake for the family. We would always make extra and give it to other family members, especially to the elderly to show our love and respect. I decided to carry on this beautiful tradition and made extra cakes and sent them to some of my friends and aunties here in London.

We use loads of the preserved ingredients to add the flavour to the cake, this includes: dried scallop, shittake mushroom, black fungus, shrimp, sausage and duck. It is not necessary to include every single one of them, but more the merrier. As it is extremely difficult to get halal preserved sausage and duck. So I am using minced lamb or beef as replacement.

Try to get fatter parts of the meat which brings a richer taste to the cake. The water content in the turnips varies so the amount of water you need to add to the cake will be different each time. I suggest you to start with adding a small amount of water and gradually adding more into it when needed. The same goes with the flour. The ratio that I use for turnip to flour is 5:1 but you can certainly add more flour if the result is too watery. Different turnip to flour ratio creates different consistencies and textures of the cake so it is worth experimenting it. Most people use 6:1, 5:1 or 4:1. I prefer 5:1 but of course it depends on how you like it.

White Turnip Cake
Print Recipe
Prep Time
30 minutes
Cook Time
1.5 hour
Prep Time
30 minutes
Cook Time
1.5 hour
White Turnip Cake
Print Recipe
Prep Time
30 minutes
Cook Time
1.5 hour
Prep Time
30 minutes
Cook Time
1.5 hour
Ingredients
Servings:
Instructions
  1. Wash and soak all the dried ingredients for 2 hours. Keep the soaked water.
  2. Divide the white turnip into half. Grind half of it and cut into small pieces for the other half.
  3. Heat the oil into wok, add the minced meat and onion until aromatic.
  4. Add the dried shiitake mushroom, shrimp, scallop and fungus and stir fly until aromatic.
  5. Add the white turnip into the wok until half cooked. Turn to low heat.
  6. Mix the water with the rice powder and corn flour and add into the wok. Add all the seasonings and mix well. It should become a thick dough. If it is too dried, add more water (the water from the soaked dried ingredients) . If it is too watery, add more rice flour and mix well.
  7. Transfer to the containers and steam for 1 hour in high heat. (First time my new steam oven contributes on CamelMirror!)
  8. Take the turnip cake out to cool down and transfer to fridge afterwards.
  9. Before serving, cut into small pieces (with at least 1.5 cm thickness). Heat the oil in a pan and pan fry it until golden.
  10. Serve hot!
Recipe Notes

1. the cake will look watery straight after steaming but don’t worry it will look beautiful after cooled down.
2. It is easier to pan fry it after it is chilled in the fridge.
3. turnip : flour : 5:1
4. rice flour : corn flour : 3:1

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Burger

Everybody loves their burger. This is my take on a home-made burger. It is simple and delicious, and makes for a nice comfort meal. This recipe has been inspired by a Japanese chef/blogger and I have modified his recipe a little bit. You may find his blog here:http://www.masa.tw/
The golden proportion of lean and fat meat that I have been told is 7:3. This ratio will result in the most perfect, juicy and succulent burger. I use lamb mince as the fat cut because it has a high fat content. You may also substitute it with another fat cut. I put a small piece of mozzarella cheese inside the burger to create a secret surprise when they are bitten into! I love cheese in almost any food! My choices of veggie toppings are just the classic: tomato, lettuce, onion, cheese and most importantly, a sunny sided up with a melted yolk on top of the burger! A melted yolk with a burger is absolutely divine!

Burger
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
4 people 20 minutes
Cook Time
20 minutes
Servings Prep Time
4 people 20 minutes
Cook Time
20 minutes
Burger
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
4 people 20 minutes
Cook Time
20 minutes
Servings Prep Time
4 people 20 minutes
Cook Time
20 minutes
Ingredients
Servings: people
Instructions
  1. Finely dice the onion and stir fry it until it slightly turns brown. Set aside and leave it to cool.
  2. Mix the beef, lamb mince and salt and keep mixing it until it becomes sticky.
  3. Mix the milk and breadcrumb separately in another bowl.
  4. Add the milk and breadcrumb mixture, egg, pepper, Worchester sauce, mustard and onion with the meat mince. Mix them well.
  5. Divide the mixture into four portion equally.
  6. Take one portion and pat it between two hands 10 times. Put one(or two!) dice of mozzarella in the center and cover it. Flatten and mould it into rounded shape.
  7. Add the oil on the grill pan, grill it on both sides to seal it.
  8. Preheat the oven and bake it for 180 C for 6-8 minutes depending on how you like them. Alternatively, u may turn to medium heat and leave it on the grill pan and grill it for 6-7 minutes for each side. Again, depending on how you like them!
  9. Add any veggies toppings and sauces that u may like with the burger bun! I personally like to add a sunny side up on top of the burger meat! The egg yolk would melt on the burger meat, Gorgeous!
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Braised Seafood and Vegetables with Rice

I love dishes with a rich, thick sauce packed with flavour from the ingredients after you stew them. For me, this is a perfect combination with plain boiled rice. Unlike some other cultures, which prefers flavoured rice, we usually have plain boiled rice. Therefore, the sauce is a very important element in our dishes. We can mix this sauce with plain rice. My favourite braised dish is sliced beef and egg with rice, the beef and egg are so tender but full of flavour. Yesterday, I wanted to have a similar dish and found some frozen mixed seafood in the freezer, so I quickly went the Tesco nearby and grabbed some mixed vegetables, the Braised Seafood and Vegetables with Rice is quick and easy to make! The rich and thick sauce from the dish is from the large amount of water-corn starch mixture. I made it at the ratio of 2:1 which gives the right consistency. Feel free to use any other ingredients you may like. This is super simple and easy dish to make.

Braised Seafood and Vegetables with Rice
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
2 people 5 Minutes
Cook Time
15 Minutes
Servings Prep Time
2 people 5 Minutes
Cook Time
15 Minutes
Braised Seafood and Vegetables with Rice
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
2 people 5 Minutes
Cook Time
15 Minutes
Servings Prep Time
2 people 5 Minutes
Cook Time
15 Minutes
Ingredients
Servings: people
Instructions
  1. Heat oil in a pan, cook the seafood. Set aside.
  2. Heat oil in a pan. Add garlic and ginger until you can smell the aroma. Add all other ingredients and seasoning and mix well until half cooked.
  3. Mix the water and corn flour. Add the mixture and the cooked seafood together. Turn to low heat and simmer for 5 minutes until the mixture is thick. Best served hot with boiled rice.
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Rice Roll

It has been a month since I came back from Hajj. Things are slowly getting back to normal. I will post my Hajj reflection shortly. This recipe was written before I travel but did not have the chance to post it until now. Rice Roll is a all-time favourite dish in Hong Kong Cha Chan Ten and Mr. Camel’s favourite. This is not a traditional method of making it but I have adapted it to suit our domestic kitchen. You can also make a vegetarian version, simply leave out the meat and add chopped spring onion only. The vegetarian rice roll is also very delicious with sweetened soy sauce, chili sauce and peanut butter. I know the sauce combination sounds strange. But trust me, it matches perfectly well with the rice roll.

Rice Roll (appox 10-12 rolls depending on size and thickness)
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
2-6 people 15 minutes
Cook Time
20 minutes
Servings Prep Time
2-6 people 15 minutes
Cook Time
20 minutes
Rice Roll (appox 10-12 rolls depending on size and thickness)
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
2-6 people 15 minutes
Cook Time
20 minutes
Servings Prep Time
2-6 people 15 minutes
Cook Time
20 minutes
Ingredients
Rice Roll
Filling
Servings: people
Instructions
  1. Sleeve all the flour in a mixing bowl.
  2. Add 250ml water into the mixing bowl until dissolved.
  3. Add the remaining water and mix well.
  4. Sleeve the mixture twice to three times.
  5. Rub the oil (not included in the ingredients) on the container you will use to steam with and the spatula.
  6. Add the mixture on the container in a thin layer. If using spring onion only, just spread it evenly on the layer.
  7. Add the filing at the bottom of 1/3 portion of the layer.
  8. Steam for 4 minutes.
  9. Wait till it is slightly cooled and use a spatula to roll it slowly from the side of the filling.
  10. Add sweetened soy sauce, chili sauce etc to taste, serve hot.
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Vegetables Soup

This soup is inspired by the New Covent Garden vegetables soup. When I traveled in Edinburgh recently, I tried this soup and I was very impressed by its richness. I used the ingredients as a reference and made my version of this vegetables soup. This is my first time I’ve use swede. It is not common in Asia so I was not sure if I would like its flavour. To my surprise, the taste was great and it worked well with other vegetables. Feel free to use different combination of vegetables such as sweet corn, turnip, etc to make your very own version of this vegetable soup!

Vegetables Soup
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
4 people 15 minutes
Cook Time
45 minutes
Servings Prep Time
4 people 15 minutes
Cook Time
45 minutes
Vegetables Soup
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
4 people 15 minutes
Cook Time
45 minutes
Servings Prep Time
4 people 15 minutes
Cook Time
45 minutes
Ingredients
Servings: people
Instructions
  1. Cut all ingredients into small pieces.
  2. Heat the oil in a pan, stir fry the onion until you can smell the aroma.
  3. Add the tomato, swede, celery, carrot, cabbage and lentil and stir fry them for 5 minutes in medium heat.
  4. Add water, salt and sugar until it boils.
  5. Add milk until it boils.
  6. Simmer for 45 minutes in low heat. Serve hot.
Recipe Notes

I use a vaccum cooker, simmer for 15 minutes and put it into the vaccum container.

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Beef Cake (Pan-fried Dumpling)

I know my blog haven’t been updated for quite a while. I was very busy (and frankly a little bit lazy). But there will be two more recipes on the way so hopefully it won’t be take too long before the next update.

You may not have seen this beef cake before as this is rarely available. This beef cake was first introduced by a Muslim restaurant so we all call it “Halal Beef Cake” in Hong Kong. It is very popular with many locals as they visit the restaurant regularly just for this. To my content, my Halal Beef Cake is very similar to the actual thing. I reduced the size of the beef cake as I find them less messy to eat and more suitable for people who have smaller apetite.

Beef Cake (Pan-fried Dumpling)
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
4 people 1 hour
Cook Time
10 minutes
Servings Prep Time
4 people 1 hour
Cook Time
10 minutes
Beef Cake (Pan-fried Dumpling)
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
4 people 1 hour
Cook Time
10 minutes
Servings Prep Time
4 people 1 hour
Cook Time
10 minutes
Ingredients
Dough
Filling
Servings: people
Instructions
  1. 1. Heat the water until it reaches 65℃
  2. 2. Sieve the plain flour and mix it with the salt.
  3. 3. Add the water in the plain flour for 3 times.
  4. 4. Mix the flour and water well until it becomes a dough.
  5. 5. Use a wet towel or cling film to cover it and let it rest for 45 mins.
  6. 6. In the meantime, we will make the filling. Add the beef mince with salt. Keep mixing and stirring until it becomes sticky. Add the water, 1Tbsp at a time.
  7. 7. Add all other ingredients in the filling and mix well.
  8. 8. Chill the filling in the fridge.
  9. 9. Knead the dough for 5 minutes. Divide the dough into 16 pieces, each one should be appox 30g.
  10. 10. Roll each into a ball and use a rolling pin to flatten it into a 12 cm wide circle. Make sure you roll the side a bit thinner.
  11. 11. Place 1 Tbsp or more filling at the center of the circle. Gently pinch the side in one direction with 2 fingers and seal the dumpling. Place it upside down (ie. The sealed side should face downward.) Use your palm to gently flatten it a little bit and it should be appox 7 cm.
  12. 12. When you have fit all the fillings in the dumplings. Heat oil in a frying pan. Place the dumplings on the pan in medium high heat (the sealed side should face down). When it turns golden, turn to the other side. When the other side is golden, turn to the other side and add some water in the pan. The water should reach a quarter height of the dumplings. Turn to medium heat. Place the lid on and cook until the water is evaporated. It should be approximately 4-5 minutes. The mince cake should be hot and crispy. Take it out, serve hot.
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Wonton (Meat and Prawns Dumpling)

Wonton is a popular Hong Kong street food and my favourite type of dumpling. The skin of Wonton is very thin which means you can get a richer flavour and texture. You can easily get wonton skin in Chinese supermarkets. It is usually eaten with soup, vegetables and sometimes noodles. As this takes some effort to make, I usually make a large batch and frozen it for lunches later. The fillings of wontons varies. The meat and prawns filling is most to my liking. The golden ratio of meat and prawns is 1:1. You may add mushrooms, vegetables, basically anything you like in the filling. I hope to post other dumplings recipe with different fillings later, so watch this space!

Wonton (Meat and Prawns Dumpling)
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
4 people 45 minutes
Cook Time
15 minutes
Servings Prep Time
4 people 45 minutes
Cook Time
15 minutes
Wonton (Meat and Prawns Dumpling)
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
4 people 45 minutes
Cook Time
15 minutes
Servings Prep Time
4 people 45 minutes
Cook Time
15 minutes
Ingredients
Servings: people
Instructions
  1. Mix the beef mince with salt and mix it clockwise until it is sticky.
  2. Add in soy sauce, corn flour, sesame oil and white pepper powder and mix well.
  3. Remove the vein of the prawns. I am using frozen prawns of which the shell and veins have already been removed. Cut them into small pieces. If you are using small sized prawns, you may not need to cut it into pieces
  4. Add the prawns, white pepper powder, sesame oil, sugar, grated ginger in the beef mince and mix well.
  5. Add 1 chopped spring onion and coriander in the meat mixture. Mix well.
  6. Use the wonton skin to wrap it. Use a finger to put some water on the edge of wonton skin and seal the wonton.
  7. Add the Pak Choi into the boiled stock and cook for 2-3 minutes. Turn off heat, add a pinch of chopped spring onion.
  8. In a separate bowl, boil the water. After the water is boiled, add the wontons and a cup of cold water. Boil for 2-3 minutes.
  9. Add some soup, Pak Choi and wonton in the bowl. Serve hot.
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Portuguese Style Coconut Chicken (Galinha à portuguesa)

My mum used to make this dish during gatherings and special occasions. I would look forward to such a special occasion because I love this dish so much. Now, I can make it myself whenever I want 🙂 Interestingly, despite with the name “Portuguese style”, this dish is originate from Macao. You will never find anything similar in Portugal. This is very easy to make and the flavor is richer if you let it rest overnight and save it for next day’s meals.

Portuguese Style Coconut Chicken
Print Recipe
Servings
4 people
Cook Time
1 hour
Servings
4 people
Cook Time
1 hour
Portuguese Style Coconut Chicken
Print Recipe
Servings
4 people
Cook Time
1 hour
Servings
4 people
Cook Time
1 hour
Ingredients
Servings: people
Instructions
  1. Heat oil in the pan, add the onion until golden.
  2. Add the potato, chicken, turmeric, cumin and salt pan fry it for 5 minutes.
  3. Add the coconut milk, water and pepper. Cook in medium high heat until boil.
  4. After boiling for 5 minutes, turn to medium low heat and simmer for 45 minutes to 1 hour, stir occasionally. Serve hot.
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Seafood Spaghetti with Pesto Sauce

I love using the pesto sauce for pasta dishes.  Mr Camel used to buy ready-made pesto sauce. Last week, I decided to make it from scratch myself. It turned out to be very easy to make! There are only three ingredients needed, plus a blender to mix everything together. Alternatively, you can use a pastel and mortar which will just yield a coarser result. Unfortunately, I did not take photos when I made the sauce. Nonetheless, this is super easy and delicious sauce, so when I make it again I shall put the photos up here. Until then, this is the recipe for seafood spaghetti with pesto sauce.

Seafood Spaghetti with Pesto Sauce
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
2 people 15 minutes
Cook Time
30 minutes
Servings Prep Time
2 people 15 minutes
Cook Time
30 minutes
Seafood Spaghetti with Pesto Sauce
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
2 people 15 minutes
Cook Time
30 minutes
Servings Prep Time
2 people 15 minutes
Cook Time
30 minutes
Ingredients
Pesto Sauce
Seafood Spaghetti
Servings: people
Instructions
Seafood Spaghetti with Pesto Sauce
  1. Cook the spaghetti according to the package instruction, drain well and set aside.
  2. Marinate the chicken with soy sauce and pepper.
  3. Heat oil in the pan, add chicken and pan fry it until it is half cooked.
  4. Heat oil in a separate pan, pan fry the onion and garlic until you can smell the aroma.
  5. Add the mushrooms and baby corns into the pan and salt and pepper.
  6. Add the half-cooked chicken and cook thoroughly. Mixthe cooked spaghetti into the chicken. Add several table spoons of milk in the mixture if it is too dry.
  7. Pan fry the prawn and squid in a separate pan until cooked and add into the mixture with spaghetti and pesto.
  8. Turn off heat, mix all ingredients and 4 Tbsp of Pesto sauce well and serve.
Pesto Sauce
  1. Use a pan to bake the pine nut until golden. Set aside until cooled.
  2. Mix all the ingredients in a blender. Store it into a jar and cover with 1Tbps of extra virgin olive oil on top to seal the sauce between air.
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Fillet of Fish in Sweet Corn Sauce

This is a very common dish in Chinese restaurants and my most ordered dish in Cha Chan Teng when I was in Hong Kong. The combination of sweet corn and fish is a perfect match. It is suitable for both adults and children as there is no bones in cod fillets. In fact, any white fish fillet is suitable to make this dish. It is super easy to make and taste exactly the same as what you get in the restaurants. I usually avoid cooking deep fried food at home. Not only it is not healthy, it is also a headache to deal with any leftover oil. This time I used a ‘semi-fried’ method using my newly bought cast iron pan, which is to use more oil than pan fry but less oil than deep fry. The result is very good. It is a very good alternative to deep fry.

Fillet of Fish in Sweet Corn Sauce
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
2 peope 15 minutes
Cook Time
15 minutes
Servings Prep Time
2 peope 15 minutes
Cook Time
15 minutes
Fillet of Fish in Sweet Corn Sauce
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
2 peope 15 minutes
Cook Time
15 minutes
Servings Prep Time
2 peope 15 minutes
Cook Time
15 minutes
Ingredients
Servings: peope
Instructions
  1. Dry the cod fillet with kitchen towel. Cut it into small pieces and marinate with salt and pepper for 15 minutes.
  2. Use a blender to blend 2/3 of the corn into puree.
  3. Beat the egg in a bowl. Dip the cod into the egg to coat. Coat it with another layer of corn flour.
  4. Heat the oil into pan. The oil should be 1.5cm height. When oil becomes hot, gently put the cod into the hot oil. Cook for 2 minutes per side or until cooked. Transfer it onto a kitchen towel to remove any excess oil.
  5. Heat a small amount of oil in a pan, add the corn puree, corn in the pan and water. Season with salt and sugar. Cook it until boiling.
  6. Add the remaining beaten egg. Cook for further 1/2 minute.
  7. Pour it on the cod. Serve hot.
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