Napa cabbage roll

I got a big beautiful napa cabbage sitting in my fridge for weeks and still doesn’t know what to do with it. Usually, I will easily make it into  kimchi during winter or gyoza but I’ve too many of them sitting my fridge and freezer; it is such a waste to do stir-fry since it has a big leaves. I googled and found the idea of using it as a wrap, just like wonton or stuffed vegetables.

NapaCabbageWrap

Here is how I do it for this recipe.
Fillings:

  • Chicken breast – minced
  • Prawn – minced
  • Shitake mushroom – I always used fresh one and diced it.
  • Water chestnut – diced it
  • Ginger – grated
  • 1 clove of Garlic – chopped it fine
  • Spring onion/scallion – chopped
  • Carrot(s) – diced
  • 1 tbsp Oyster sauce
  • 1 tbsp Soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • 1 large Egg – lightly beaten
  • 1 tsp Cornstarch

Mix the ingredients of the fillings together in a bowl and then put it into fridge for at least 1-2 hours.
*The above ingredients can be used for wonton, stuffed vegetables, spring roll or dim sum.
Napa Cabbage

  • Remove each leaf carefully and trim a little bit at the bottom.
  • Use a pan that can fit the leaf.
  • Bring the water to boil with the seleccted pan and blanch the cabbage leaves until it turn soft.
  • Take the leaves out from the hot/warm water and give it a quick cold bath.
  • Try to drain as much water out from the cabbage leaves as possible and be careful not to break it.

Now, it is ready to use for rolling or wrapping.

Sauce:

  • Chicken broth
  • 1 tbsp oyster sauce
  • 1 tsp cornstarch

Method:

  1. Lay the soft cabbage leave gently and flat.
  2. Put a tablespoon or teaspoon of fillings that fit to the size of each cabbage leaf.
  3. Roll it gently and push each end to cover the mince nicely.
  4. Put them into a steamer.
  5. Steam them for approximately 20 minutes.
  6. When it is done,  remove it from the steamer and place them on serving plate.
  7. Pour the sauce over and then garnish with spring onion.

Home-made Calpis drink

Calpis1If you’ve been to Japan or die-hard Japanese product fan, then you most probably have seen Calpis drink or consume it before. It is a popular non-carbonated soft-drink in Japan or among the Japanese. We’ve tried it during our holidays trip in Japan and love it. A few months ago, I found it in the Asian store in Holland and it was pretty pricy. Unfortunately, it is sold out everywhere now. I was searching desperately on the internet where I can buy it online, then came across this site showing how to make it at home. So I gave it a try with the ingredients specified on the web site without following the measurement.
Ingredients: Yogurt, sugar and lime.
I used a non-fat/non-full yogurt, cane sugar and a lime.
Methods:

  • Add the yogurt and sugar into a heat proved bowl.
  • Place the bowl over simmering water.
  • Stir the yogurt and sugar until smooth.
  • When it is ready, remove the bowl from the simmering water.
  • Squeeze the lime juice into the yogurt mixture. Mix well.

When the mixture has cool down, you can chilled it in the fridge and then add your favorite drink to it. If you can’t wait like me and like the one similar to the bottle, then add water to dilute the yogurt mixture and it taste almost the same.Calpis

Home made teriyaki sauce

Most of the time, people will wonder why should we waste time to make a sauce when you can buy them from a store. When you are serious into cooking, then you don’t buy it. Most of the professional chef doesn’t use ready-made sauce, they make it themselves. This is to understand the basic taste of each ingredients use for a dish. Same for Japanese cooking, teriyaki sauce is one of the very good example. I started to make the teriyaki sauce myself after seriously getting into Japanese cooking. It is pretty simple.

  • Sake
  • Mirin (Hon-mirin)
  • Soy Sauce
  • Sugar (small amount)
  • corn starch (to thicken the sauce) – optional

There is no measurement provided for each ingredients because it goes according to the amount of sauce that you intend to make. For a start, use 1 tablespoon of each (sake, mirin, soy sauce) for experimenting; use 1 teaspoon of cornstarch to thicken the sauce (depends on situation).
Have fun in sauce making!!!

Three-cups chicken (三杯鸡)

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三杯鸡 = 3-cups chicken (literally translate), one of the popular Taiwanese dish.
What does the 3 cups means?
3-cups = soy sauce, sesame oil and Chinese cooking wine/rice wine. The selection of this 3 ingredients are important for the delicious taste. Soy sauce must not be too salty or else it will over-power the others. Sesame oil has to be fragrance, rice wine must not be too mild and it must have a good percentage of alcohol. The ratio used from this 3 ingredients must be equal or else they will over-power each other. This means 2 tablespoon of soy sauce, 2 tablespoon of sesame oil and 2 tablespoon of rice wine.3cup1
Apart from the 3-cups ingredient, there is 2 more: ginger and garlic.
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This recipe is chicken (鸡), you can used others like mushroom, seafood or whatever you can think of, be creative.
Here is how I made my 3-cups chicken.
Methods:

  1. Cut the ginger in slices and smash the garlic.
  2. Heat the oil, add few drops of sesame oil and fry ginger until fragrance.
  3. Add in the garlic, make sure not to burn it.
  4. Add in chicken and cook it (turning it if necessary)
  5. When the chicken is almost done, add in the soy sauce, sesame oil and rice wine.
  6. Add in shimeji mushroom and sweet pepper (punt paprika) – optional
  7. Garnish with Chinese coriander – optional