Sunday, September 30, 2012

Japanese Carbonara

Craving for some Japanese carbonara! The first time I tried it was at my friend's birthday party. This a really addictive dish that needs to be served hot!

This is Runnyrunny999's Japanese carbonara (2 servings)

150ml Heavy cream
150g grated cheese
100g bacon
2 eggs

This is my version: (3 servings)
200ml heavy cream
50g grated cheese (intuitive)
150g~ bacon
1 egg
4 small cloves of garlic

Why the alternative version:
1) I was an idiot who forgot to check if I still got eggs at home. In the end, I decided to make do with the only egg left because I am too lazy to go out again.

2) I can't find heavy cream nor italian parsley in Fairprice so I had to head to cold storage to look for them. Thanks to the awesome cold storage guy who'd been a great help to locate the italian parsley.

3) I can't find heavy cream so I googled for substitutes in Cold Storage. I later found out that heavy cream is also known as whipping cream so I bought the 200ml pack. (explains why I choose to use 200ml)

4) I love bacon.

5) I follow my intuition. Whatever that feels right while I'm cooking.

Sliced Bacon and finely chopped garlic.

I used to hate garlic when I was a kid and my mum would chop them so finely that I will eat it which out noticing. One day I discovered a visible chopped garlic and made a huge fuss out of it. I don't know when but I slowly learnt to eat garlic. For all the mum out there, it takes time for your kid to learn to eat the veggies. Don't rush. Haha.

Egg, heavy cream and grated, pepper and cheese mixture.

Tip: Remember to mix them really well for a smoother texture.

Tip: Heat Olive oil up (for a while) before adding in garlic, followed by bacon. Fry till the bacon turns slightly brown. Look at the fats bubbling!

Pour in the spaghetti into the pan.

Tip: Always boil the spaghetti two minutes shorter than the required time. For example, if the pack says cook for 13minutes, cook it for 11minutes. (The pasta will still cook in the pan, so take it out earlier to not overcook the pasta)

Next, give the carbonara sauce mixture a stir before pouring it into the pan as well.

Tip: Remember not to add too much salt because the bacon and grated cheese are very salty. I didn't add any for my carbonara.

This is so heavenly! However, carbonara has always been cloying for me after 5-6 bites so having a cup of green tea is good. Very sinful treat that clots the arteries. A dish to die for! Haha. I think this is a pretty manageable dish since I'm able to make it.

Give it a try and let me know your results!

Back to recipes

I'll make it myself

I'm starting a section in this blog called I'll make it myself!

Things I want to cook in 2012

Aglio Olio
Potato Salad
Apple pie
Mango Sago Pomelo

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Korea treats: Lotte + Crown

Lotte is a well known manfacturer in South Korea but not so much in Singapore unless you're into Japanese/ South Korea culture.

My friend visited South Korea and brought back some nice snacks I thought I would review them.

The first one is the Margeret. I think it cost around 3500won since it is written on the box. There are 12 packs in it with 2 cookies in each pack. The box looks pretty classy like those cookies you would have for high tea in Europe.

The sweet almond butter smell is very appetizing and they are actually soft cookies that crumbles easily.Although it is pretty soft, it still has a crust of butter cookies with almond bread-like crumbs filling. It adds kinda of like layers to the cookies that makes it really interesting.These is pretty addictive and I can have like 4-5 packs at one go.

The next one is the Lotte Kancho (Honeydew flavor) The packaging is really cute. This cost 1000 won per pack. The Kancho looks kinda of the the Meiji's Hello Panda but it taste really different. Unlike the Hello Pandas, the Kancho have a rough-textured cookie.

If you look at the cross section, the cookie is pretty uneven on the inside so it makes it really crunchy. The melon cream tasted like vanilla mixed with honeydew and there is a light sweet smell of honeydew. Pretty nice if you like a rough textured cookie.

Crown Couque D'asse White. This box comes with 12 packs of cookies in it. I like the product design of the Crown cookie box alot. It comes with a easy tear V-shape line that creates sort of like a lid to open the box. The next one is the zipper-line to open the pack of the cookie rectangles. Just tear along the zipper line and it makes it really neat and clean.

The is a fragrant butter smell. This is made out of two really thin soft buttermilk cookie with vanilla cream sandwiched between. It is really creamy and I love the buttermilk taste. There are like chocolate pattern on the cookie it doesn't really a chocolate taste to it. 

Sunday, September 16, 2012

King's Cookie Monster

Location: Fairprice
Price: $3.90 per box (5's)

I'm looking for cheap treats once again. I love the cookie monster that pretends to eat cookie at Sesame street and wonder if I like this ice cream too.

The outer coating is milk chocolate that is thicker than the usual ice cream with rice crisps on it. The crisps are still crispy (I thought it will be soft)

The core is pretty amazing. I thought the middle will be liquid chocolate, once again, it is a thick chunk of milk chocolate in the middle. (It is kinda of like the chocolate you get to the bottom of the cone.)

I love the layering, sweet milk chocolate coating that wraps the slightly bitter and soft chocolate ice cream with a sweet milk chocolate core.

I finished all 5 by myself in a day. Shucks.

Rating: 4/5

Cheap treats for craving.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Carl's Jr. @ Vivocity

Quick bite with my friend before catching a movie! I have only eaten at Carl's Jr once or twice and I can barely remember the taste.

Charbroiled BBQ chicken combo at $10.80. I love the wholemeal bun with smoked chicken, tomatoes and lettuce. It is a little dry though. A healthier alternative than the usual bun. The burger is kinda smaller than what I expect because my friend said that Carl's Jr serves really huge burgers. I guess this is not one of them though.

Self-made ice lemon tea! This is pretty cool, getting to make my own tea to my preference. I thought I added a lot of sugar water but in the end it is not as sweet as I thought it will be. Imagine how much sugar they must have added to the can of Seasons ice lemon tea I usually drink.

Crispy fries with skin. Pretty good golden fries.

Rating: 3.5/5

This will be a very healthy meal without the fries. Pretty good fast food.

Softie in My Lolly @ VivoCity

Softie in My Lolly, located at level 2, outside the Golden Village. I would say this is a good strategic spot, to get some long liquorice strips before entering the cinema. I like how they give out free samples to try and the staff is really friendly.

I had never tried the traditional liquorice before but I heard it is a love/hate candy. You either love it or hate it to the core.

The liquorice when consumed at a larger amount (than the portion of the candy) , is beneficial for the health. One of benefits is that it facilitates removal of mucus from the lungs by coughing but it has a mild laxative effect.

Each strip selling at $3.50, 3 strips at $10. My friend and I prefer the sour range so we mixed the two flavour and got them cut into two packs. We got the sour apple and sour lime-lemon strips.

The apple flavour has a sweet chewy tube like coating (liquorice) with sour powder sprinkled on it. The core is soft sour candy.

The sour lime one isn't as sour as the apple ones though. There is a mild lemon, lime taste liquorice but the middle soft candy is sweet.

Rating: 4/5

Overall, the candy is pretty addictive but a little pricey. If you had never tried candy like these before, you should! For full range of flavours, visit  Softie in My Lolly website.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Eat At Taipei (吃在台北) @ Jcube

Location: 2 Jurong East Central 1, #03-03/18

I was pretty curious about Eat At Taipei because of the super long queue every time I visit Jcube but the recommendation rating at is the lowest I had ever seen, at 17%. Why the contrast? Why the rating is so low, yet so many people are queuing for it? I decide to bust this strange phenomenon and do a review on the food. I visited the outlet around 630pm on a Sunday with my bro and mum. The place is really striking, the first thing you will see when you take the escalator to the third level.

There wasn't much of a queue (like 5-6 people in front of us) Wait time was around 5 mins. The dishes are served pretty quickly, around 5 mins as well.

Chinese tea - $1.50 per cup (free flow) The first cup tea is pretty good with Jasmine fragrance. However, like all tea in teapot, the second and third cups gets pretty bitter after the tea leaves sit in the hot water for some time.

The first dish - Spring onion pancake (葱油饼) - $3.90 What you see is what you get. This pancake tasted like crispy roti prata. There is no onion fragrance/ seriously mild onion taste. If you have tasted good spring onion pancake/ a big fan of spring onion pancake, this will be a disappointment. Not saying this is a bad dish, it is just that it isn't the taste I am looking for.

I believe that they cooked many pancakes at one go as this dish is only slightly warm, perhaps sitting at the kitchen for a while. People who dislike onions probably will like this dish.

Rock salt crispy chicken (盐酥鸡) - $6.90 I have never been to Taiwan so I really do not know how the "authentic" fried chicken taste like. However, this tasted like the usual fried chicken chunks you can buy at Shilin eatery in Singapore. Crispy skin with the rock salt seasoning. Tender chicken pieces with fats. I was really hungry so this crispy chicken tasted pretty savory.

Vermicelli with oysters (大肠蚵仔面线) - $6.90 The vermicelli contains pig intestines. As you all know, when the pig intestine is not handled well, it leaves a foul pig smell which is what this vermicelli taste like. I hate that foul smell. The vermicelli tasted more like beehoon and there is only a couple of oysters to be found. If you are like me who can't stand the pig smell, don't order this.

I prefer the Shilin oyster vermicelli (with no pig intestines) over this.

Out of curiosity, we decided to try  the Taiwan coffin bread (棺材板)- $8.90  I find the name pretty attractive and I think it is a cool concept that the Taiwanese came up with.

The broth in the bread is basically creamy sweet corn with prawns, squid rings and fish. The seafood is really fresh and very well cooked. Squid is not too chewy, springy prawn and tender pieces of fish. However, after several spoons of it, the sweet creamy broth can be a little too cloying so you might want to share this toast with a couple of friends. I love the crispy thick bread that is deep fried. Very fluffy and slightly crispy, like those good fried buns that the western store serves.

Crisp fried oysters - $9.90 Tiny plate of oysters. I heard that the oysters in Taiwan are big and fresh. This one is pretty small, like twenty cents coin. The crispy skin is similar to the skin of the rock salt crispy chicken.

Assorted Ice - $6.90 I think I expected too much out of the Taiwan shaved ice. I used to watch on TV those large bowl of delectable treats and when this small bowl of dessert is served, I was really disappointed with the portion. I think even the ice kachang I get for $2 the hawker centre has a larger portion than this.

The taste of this is pretty good though. The toppings are strawberry burst, strawberries, mangoes and jelly with nata de coco. The shaved ice taste like milk shaved ice which is slightly sweet and goes well with the fresh and slightly sour fruit and strawberry burst. I love the balance in sweet and sour. I will definitely love this more if they were to give a bigger portion.

Rating: 3/5

Overall, the food is pretty average, not as bad as what I heard. I think the reason why it received very low rating is due to it's comparison with the authentic Taiwanese food. When people cannot get the same taste as what they get in Taiwan, it can be a little disappointing. It is sort of pricey for the average tasting food though. Service is hard to gauge. One of the servers that served us was pretty friendly and the other is pretty cold and kinda rude. It really depends on your luck.

As the eatery is located beside the ice skating rink, it can get pretty cold after a while. The music at the rink is always Bruno Mars songs. I hope that change the track because feels kind of repetitive after going there several times.