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Simple illustrated recipes
By: smamat smamat

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Friday, 1-Dec-2006 22:48 Email | Share | | Bookmark
Couscous and pepper pilaff

Some of the ingredients
Sitr fry the onions etc
Add couscous
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Friday, 1-Dec-2006 22:37 Email | Share | | Bookmark
Lamb and apricot tagine

Some of the ingredients
Soaked dry apricots
Quality Spanish saffron
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Sunday, 26-Nov-2006 22:14 Email | Share | | Bookmark
Blueberry soup (blåbärssoppa)

Simmering blueberries
Serve with double cream
Dinner: rice, chicken black pepper and mixed pickle
This is a Swedish recipe that can be had hot or cold, depending on the season. Here goes:

250 ml blueberry, fresh or frozen
250 ml water
1 tbsp potato starch or conrflour, mixed with half cup of cold water
half cup sugar

mix all ingredients and simmer but not too long as the cornflour mix will become grainy.

This is a very basic recipe, there's loads more better recipes elsewhere on the Net.

Sunday, 26-Nov-2006 22:09 Email | Share | | Bookmark
Malaysian Mixed Pickle (Acar Rampai)

Stir fry ingredients and rice vinegar
Cut the shallots and onions so
Vege mix
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Here is the recipe for the mixed pickle (see a note on it in my previous post), I got this one from

half a cucumber (remove the soft middle part with a spoon and cut julienne, 1 inch length)
1 carrot (cut into matchstick size)
1 red chillies (cut into rings)
1 green chillies (cut into rings)
half tsp turmeric powder
half tsp sesame seeds (toasted preferred)
5 tbsp rice vinegar
4 tbsp sugar
3 tbsp vegetable oil
salt for seasoning

10 asian shallots, or 5 common shallots (good substitute), or 2 red onions (least preferred)
0.5 cm ginger (finely chopped)
1 onion

1. Chop the shallots, ginger and onion (see pictures)
2. Heat the oil and on medium heat, fry the stir-fry ingredients until soft.
3. Add the carrot, cucumber and chillies and fry for a couple of minutes
4. Add vinegar, sugar, and turmeric powder, stir well.
5. Leave on for a while but remove from heat before the cucumber turns soft.
6. Add sesame seeds and season with a little salt.

As a rule, the pickle will come to its full taste after a few hours and it's cooled down. You can store it in an airtight container in the fridge for some time, don't know how long but I think it keeps well for a couple of weeks due to the vinegar's preserving properties.

A note on the vinegar; rice vinegar can be found in good Asian stores but sometimes on the supermarket shelf when you're lucky. Otherwise clear distilled vinegar or Japanese sushi vinegar can be used. Forget malt or red wine vinegar.

Vary the vinegar/sugar amount to your taste as some people like their pickles sweet/sour. I use 8 tbsp vinegar and 5 tbsp sugar.

You may add canned pineapple pieces as well. Some cooks grate the carrots coarsely as they don't like them too hard. It depends, matchstick size is good for me.

Pickle away!

Sunday, 26-Nov-2006 21:06 Email | Share | | Bookmark
Chicken Black Pepper (Ayam Lada Hitam)

Stir fry ingredients
Stir it, baby!
Chicken and carrot
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Today I cooked three things: Chicken Black Pepper, Mixed Pickle and Blueberry Soup.

An unlikely combination, I know, since the first two is Malaysian and Bluberry Soup is the Swedish blåbärsoppa!

You'll love the combination of sweet and peppery taste of the Ayam Masak Lada Hitam (Chicken Black Pepper). You can use readily ground black pepper but it's best if you mill it fresh.

The mixed pickle (Acar Rampai) is normally made for special occasions such as weddings; perhaps because the pickle is normally eaten to accompany food that is made for these occasions such as nasi minyak (aromatic yellow rice) and nasi dagang (steamed purple rice). I will put up the recipe for these dishes later.

Anyway on to the Chicken Black Pepper recipe:

500g chicken pieces (any part will do)
1 carrot (julienne cut)
1 tbsp thick soya sauce
2 tbsp oyster sause
1 tbsp cornflour (mixed into paste with half cup cold water)
2 tbsp whole black pepper (milled or finely crushed) - 1 tbsp if using ready-ground
3 tbsp vegetable oil
salt to taste

[stir-fry ingredients]
5 purple Asian shallots (or 3 normal shallots, or 1 red onions)
2 cloves garlic
1 inch ginger
1 onion

[garnish - optional]
2 spring onions - cut into 1 inch pieces
1 tomatoes - cut into 6 wedges
2 red chillies - cut into rings

1. Clean and cut the chicken (I prefer leaving it on the bone).
2. On medium heat, heat the oil and fry the stir-fry ingredients until soft.
3. Add chicken and carrot, and leave on medium heat until chicken flesh turns white.
4. Add soy sauce, oyster sauce and cornflour paste, stir in the ground pepper and mix well.
5. Cook until the chicken is tender and the sauce reduced.
6. Season to taste with salt (don't need more pepper!), add the garnishing and serve with rice.

Note: it's best if you can find purple Asian shallots, any good Asian grocers stock them. But failing that, you can substitute them with the common shallots and these tend to be larger in size than their Asian counterparts, so 5 Asian shallots will be equivalent to 3 normal shallots. Otherwise, you can use one red onion instead but it won't be as good.


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