Coffee Pork Ribs – serves 4

28 03 2006

1 cup strong coffee
1 tsp cornstarch
1 egg white
1 head garlic, minced
3 tbsp dark soy sauce
1 tbsp light soy sauce
2 tbsp sugar
1/3 cup white or shaoxing wine
1/2 kg pork ribs (preferably with some fat)
2 tbsp oil

Pinch of toasted almond flakes
Pinch of toasted sesame seeds

1. Combine all ingredients, except pork and oil, to form marinade
2. Marinate pork overnight, turning every six hours
3. In a large wok, heat oil. Meanwhile, take the pork out of the marinade
4. Fry pork till cooked. Add some marinade for sauce.
5. Garnish with toasted almond flakes and sesame seeds. Serve with white rice.


Tiramisu – serves 4

27 03 2006

120g ladyfinger sponge
80g icing sugar
30g cocoa powder

Coffee syrup:
40g coffee powder
490ml water
140ml sugar syrup
14g instant coffee powder
40g coffee liqeur

Tiramisu cream:
8 egg yolks
40g icing sugar
500g mascarpone cheese
3 egg whites
25g sugar

1. Fill a pot with coffee syrup ingredients and bring to boil. Leave to cool then refrigerate until well-chilled.
2. Soak ladyfinger sponges in coffee syrup till fully absorbed.
3. For the tiramisu cream: combine egg yolks and icing sugar and whip till foamy. Mix well with mascarpone till smooth.
4. Whip egg white and sugar until peaks form. Carefully fold into cheese mixture.
5. Layer tiramisu cream and ladyfinger sponge alternately in 4 coffee cups. Combine icing sugar with cocoa powder and sift over the top of each filled cup. Refrigerate until well-chilled and serve.

Time: 25 mins, excluding refrigeration

Taiwan Mee Sua – serves 8 to 10

27 03 2006

2 litres chicken stock, double boiled
80g braising herb packet
1 tbsp dark soy sauce
40g rock sugar
25g dried shrimp, toasted

600g red mee sua
1/2 cup cornstarch

25g coriander leaf
2 tbsp black vinegar
1 tbsp sesame oil
1 tbsp minced garlic
2 tsp chilli oil

1. Combine all stock ingredients and bring to boil.
2. Simmer stock for 5 minutes.
3. Add mee sua and cook for another 4-6 minutes.
4. Thicken with corn starch and serve with garnishes.

Helpful tips:
1. Braising herb packets can be purchased at Chinese medicinal halls. Ask for herbs to braise duck or pork. Instant braising packets are also available at selected supermarkets.
2. This recipe can be served with oysters, prawns or sliced chicken.

Deep-Fried Calamari with Warm Tomato Butter Salsa – serves 2

27 03 2006

80g calamari, cleaned and scored, then cut into bite-sized pieces
Pinch of salt
2 tbsp plain flour
1/2 cup eggwash
1 cup Japanese egg crumbs
1/2 litre oil

2 tbsp butter
1 tbsp lime juice
1 tsp Tabasco sauce
Pinch of sugar
50g mixed greens

1. Season calamari with salt. Lightly dust with plain flour and dip into eggwash before coating with breadcrumbs.
2. Heat oil in a wok and fry calamari for 3-4 minutes. Set aside to drain off excess oil.
3. Combine butter, lime juice, Tabasco sauce and sugar. Braise for 2 minutes.
4. Serve with mixed greens.

Chocolate Cherry Cookies – makes 3 dozens

11 03 2006

2 cups unbleached or whole wheat pastry flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 1/2 cups organic sugar
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/2 cup nondairy trans-fat-free margarine or vegetable shortening
1/2 cup sunflower oil
1/2 cup canned coconut milk
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3/4 cup pecan or walnut pieces
3/4 cup chocolate chips
1/2 cup dried sweet cherries (chopped if large)

1. Preheat oven to 300F. In a mixing bow, combine flour, baking soda, and sea salt.

2. In a separate bowl, cream sugar, maple syrup, margarine, oil, coconut milk, and vanilla. Gradually mix in dry ingredients. Stir in pecans, chocolate chips, and dried cherries.

3. Drop in spoonfuls on cookie sheet and bake for 20 minutes.

Roasted Vegetables and Creamy Cheese Pasta – serves 4 to 6

11 03 2006

6 cups winter squash, such as acorn or butternut, cut into 1-inch chunks
3 cups cauliflower or broccoli, cut into bite-size florets
1 1/2 cup onions, cut in largish chunks
1 cup red or green bell peppers, sliced into 1-inch wide strips
8 garlic cloves, sliced thickly
5 tablespoons olive oil
3 tablespoons fresh rosemary leaves (or 1 1/2 tablespoons dried)
Sea salt, to taste
1 pound penne pasta
One 6-ounce log goat cheese, cut into chunks (or you could substitute fresh mozzarella)

1. Preheat oven to 400F.

2. In a large mixing bowl, place squash, cauliflower or broccoli, onions, peppers, garlic, oil, and rosemary, stirring well to mix.

3. Place vegetables in a baking dish and cover. Bake 45 minutes, or until vegetables are tender.

4. As vegetables bake, bring a large pot of salted water to a rolling boil and add pasta, cooking until barely al dente according to package directions. Drain and transfer to a large serving bowl.

5. Add roasted vegetables to pasta and toss to combine. Top with chunks of goat cheese or mozzarella and serve.

Garlicky Bread Soup – serves 4

11 03 2006

2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cups chopped onions
16 garlic cloves, finely minced
2 quarts water
1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary
1 teaspoon dried thyme
2 medium russet potatoes, peeled and diced
2 carrots, peeled and sliced thinly into rounds
1/2 cup sherry
Salt and freshly-ground black pepper, to taste
4 thick slices of good-quality bread
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese (optional)

1. Heat the olive oil over medium heat in a large soup pot. Add onions and saute, stirring frequently, for 10 minutes, until softened. Add garlic and saute 5 minutes more.

2. Add water and herbs, bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer soup for 15 minutes. Add potatoes and carrots and simmer for another 15 minutes, or until potatoes are tender. Add sherry and continue to simmer an additional 5 minutes.

3. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Place a bread slice in the bottom of each soup bowl, ladle the soup over the bread, and serve hot, garnished with the cheese, if desired.