Monday, August 27, 2012

Herbal steamboat anyone?

B1 complains that I do not better his body with healthful food. So one day while waiting for him to fetch me, I popped over at a nearby medicinal shop and bought some ready-packed herbs and other dried goods. There was one specific for steamboat which I found intriguing, since we used to eat steamboat at the Chinese-run establishment next to my violin class, and they offered herbal soup as one of the soup stocks.

Since Mutter gave us so much (perishable) vegetables the other day, they had to be gotten rid of the fastest way possible in vast quantity via steamboat, which also gave me a chance to try out the soup pack. The supermarket was offering a deal of frozen scallops (apparently known as Jacob's mussels?) so I used those as the soup base with the herbs. Pretty luxurious huh?

I also made my own dumplings. 2 kinds. I shaped store-bought fish paste (tastes like dory, never buy again) and flavored it before mixing it with corn kernels and shaping it around asparagus stalks. I fried them so that they would retain shape and attain a kick to the flavor from the olive oil.
The other is minced meat which I mixed with endamame before fryng. All this took me 2 hours of effort. Sigh. Put in so much effort for the unappreciative B1. He didn't say anything except the soup was too sweet (I might have put in too much scallops, because we could eat them after all)

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Braised Pork Belly

I am really turning Auntie. 

Case in point, today I was supposed to be buying fish cakes for my spicy Korean rice cakes but ended up chatting with a middle-aged auntie at the freezer compartment about whether I should buy chicken, and from there, we went on to chat about making double-boiled soup. In the end I didn't buy any. *face2palm*

2nd case in point, I couldn't resist the frozen pork belly when it went on sale. So I bought some to boil for soup. However as I stood in front of the crockpot, I thought to myself, boiled pork is tasteless and really gross in texture. B1 definitely won't eat it. So what should I do?

Braised pork is the answer.

Taking the pork from the pot, I fried some slices of garlic, which I then set aside for wrapping with the pork in lettuce. I then poured some stock and the meat, before adding dark soy sauce for color and flavored with light soy sauce, sugar, and five spice. 30 minutes later, the meat totally soaked in all that flavor and taste and was totally yummy while the skin and fat were QQ.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Veggies from Mutter's Garden

Mutter popped by last week, bringing with her loads of veggies in ugly ass plastic bags (recycled from grocery shopping)  from her garden. As I mentioned before, Mutter's friend rents a plot of land where all the auntie friends can set up their own little subplots and grow whatever they want.

Pouring everything out onto the table, I was delighted to find around six kinds of vegetables. Edamame (I was so excited, I drove to the plot and stole one of the plants), kangkong (well, I only found one thick old stalk), lady fingers, sweet potato leaves, baby caixin (so badly starved that they were as thin as sticks) and red spinach (or I hope it is)
There were so much of some of the vegetables, that it took me two hours to wash off the dirt and sort them out. We had to get rid of most of them in 2 steamboat meals, where B1 later complained that the vegetables were so tough and indigestible that he was passing them in their original form (TMI, so have to hide). 
I have no idea what this is, I just pray it is not a weed
Kangkong - one lone stalk

Monday, August 13, 2012

Grapes @ HM's Garten

I guess the most awesome thing about Germany's weather is that you can find grapes, apples, cherries and strawberries in gardens *envious*. This photo was taken with my new Nikon V1. Nice?
Which I especially bought for Germany =D.

Champignon Suppe

Coming home from Germany, I recalled the zwiebel suppe we had at Cafe Gerlinde, the restaurant run by the Beh family within their picturesque B&B. So I made Champignon Suppe (otherwise unglamorously known as button mushroom soup) *haha*.

Baking in the oven... for once it didn't burn
Just like how Gerlinde does it, I added white wine to the soup (but I was too lazy to use stock, and too health-conscious to use artificial flavorings) made from frying the sliced mushrooms, garlic, onions in butter then dumping water...Then I sealed the soup with some ready-made pastry skin and happily painted it with egg yolk which is why it is so pretty. 

We had it with some tough ass striploin I bought at Shop & Save (this is why you must marinate your cheap meat for days). I was too lazy to make a sauce, so we had it with some garlic sauce we bought back from Germany (mercifully no stomachache, despite carting that and curry sauce all over Germany and back).