Tuesday, October 28, 2014

SC's Birthday Dinner at the Principal, Hong Kong

SC's birthday is our annual splurge.
(Wow, that's in August!!! That's one hell of a blogpostcrastination, you lazy bum!
Please excuse me. I rant to myself a lot here)
And this one's worth every penny. Thank you for the recommendation, e_ting!
Naturally, I don't remember what these are, but I remember that we love almost everything, including the concrete sofa in front of the restaurant.
No need to thank me for this non-review. 
I really should not call myself a blogger.

We had quite an expedition that night. The birthday boy was really pleased. Phew!

Another thing that I love: I didn't have to make a phone call for booking (I HATE voice calls with a passion). Click here to book online.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

The Grilled Pork Neck Dish That I Bring To All Potluck Parties

I don't know how to call this dish... I used to call it sate (or satay - I am not a big fan of this word, Indonesians say SATE!) grilled pork neck because I make it how I make sate, but nobody's convinced because there is no skewering involved, there is no peanut sauce and the end product doesn't look anywhere within 100m radius of sate. So, I see how sate or satay might not be a great name for it :)

So let's just call this the Grilled Pork Neck Dish That Rita Brings To All Potluck Parties. BecauseI really brought this dish to almost every potluck party I attended. People love it (or at least they pretend to), and even if people don't love it - I have no issues finishing it myself. Hehehheh. 

It's very easy to make. Idiot-proof level.
I can't think of easy ways to ruin this dish... except maybe if you're bringing this dish to a party naked, and it is not a nudist party. That will ruin the dish. Sorry - I tend to go off topic like that.

Now, to make this dish.
- Pork neck meat (I usually buy frozen ones from Kai Bo. You can buy fresh if you want), or you can substitute this with thigh chicken fillet with skin on.
(Quantity recommendation: if this is one of the many dishes of a potluck party, 1 big slice of pork neck meat that's available in Kai Bo frozen food shop should be ok for 4 people. If you're treating this as one of the main dishes, then 1 slice serves 2. If you're serving this to a crazy greedy pork-lover, allow 1 per person)

- Shallot, thinly sliced (1/2 shallot per 1 slice pork neck)
- Kecap manis (Indonesian sweet soy sauce)
- Soy sauce 
(Ratio of soy sauce : sweet soy sauce = 1 : 3)
- ground nutmeg, ground coriander seeds, cumin

Dipping sauce
- Kecap manis
- Fish sauce (just a dash)
- Lime juice (or lemon juice)  
- Lime wedges or lemon wedges
- A bit of ground nutmeg
- Thinly sliced shallot (just a bit - you can set aside some when slicing shallot for the marinade)
- Chopped fresh chillies (preferably the green birds eye chilli - cabe rawit ftw! or omit if you can't handle the heat)
Mix well & serve in small bowls with the lime or lemon wedges 

How to do
(Ideally prepare the night before serving)
Defrost meat if you bought frozen. Pat dry, po ke the meat all over with fork (or meat poke...r?). Place meat in container, add marinade, massage the marinate all over the meat and refrigerate overnight (or a couple hours).

Preheat oven to 250C, grill meat until the surface gets nicely caramelized. You can baste with the marinade or make more of the dipping sauce for basting. This normally takes about 40 minutes in my oven.
Charcoal grilling would be awesome too.
When done, slice diagonally and thinly, squeeze lime juice all over it and serve with dipping sauce.

And wait for the crowd to ask you for the recipe ;) 

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Dinner at Kee Club - Delish Red Prawn Linguine

SC and I had a nice dinner date at Kee Club (thanks for inviting us, Kee Club!), and the dinner started with this dish.
Very simple, fresh. Classic Italian flavors.
And we had a chance to taste this rare olive oil, Chef Roland Schuller personally brought the bottle to most tables to taste. A nice personal touch!
I had the night's special as starter - the langoustine! Fresh, nicely cooked, well seasoned. I enjoyed it.
SC had the fresh quail. Served with ham, zucchini flower, ricotta and melon soup. The quail's nicely cooked. Personally, I'd prefer the dish to have not as many elements, to let the quail shine :)

Our favorite dish of the night. Kee Club's famous linguine with red prawn. We love it!
Perfectly cooked pasta, fresh red prawn, tasty sauce.
SC could not hold back and went rather barbaric during dinner. Hehehe. We'll definitely go back for this dish again.
I had the veal milanese as my main. the meat's nice and tender but the portion is way too big for me.

SC had the Pluma Iberico. The meat's nicely cooked and I enjoyed the creamy and smooth mash.
For dessert, I had the apple tart with vanilla ice cream.
SC had the chocolate fondant with mango sorbet.
And this is the ending to our meal :)
Thanks again for dinner, Kee Club.

Kee Club is an exclusive member's club. 
To dine there, there are a few ways: be a member, or get a member to help you with booking, or book through 5-star hotel concierge (Four Seasons, Mandarin, Shangri-La, the Peninsula, Upper House), and American Express Black Centurion Cardholders can access Kee through the concierge. 
Wanna to try applying for a membership? Click here.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Budget Dinner: Beef & Radish in Chu Hou Sauce Recipe

Fresh beef meat is getting really expensive these days. In Hong Kong, always eating at home does not always mean that you'll spend a lot less! 
Here's how to make the most out of HK$20 beef for dinner. My mil's recipe ;)

- HK$20 beef meat, sliced thinly just like for stir frying. This saves cooking time too.
- half a medium radish, skin peeled off & cut into chunks
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed
- 1 cm ginger, crushed
- 1 tbsp Chu Hou sauce (we use Lee Kum Kee)
- a bit of cooking oil
- just enough water to cook the beef & radish

Saute garlic & ginger until fragrant. Add beef, add radish, add sauce, add water, cook until radish chunks are soft.

There's so little beef in this dish but it feels so... hearty :)
Enjoy it with 2 bowls of steamed rice or use it as noodles/pasta sauce.

Save the money for your next fancy restaurant meal... or shoes :)

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Nicholini's, Conrad Hotel, Hong Kong

A lovely dinner by Chef Luca de Berardinis at Nicholini's. Love many of the dishes & the romantic setting. Considering bringing SC here for a major romantic date ;)

It all started with this yummy parmesan amouse bouche. 

Pan fried scallop lentil soup with chestnuts and Montepulciano reduction.
Succulent scallop, tasty everything else. I tilted my plate to clean everything up :)

A lovely little drama involving fennel flowers...

Salted cod with red vinegar flavored potatoes, roasted peppers & black olives. Very yummy. I especially adore the potatoes :)

Beef tartar with crunchy egg yolk, baby salad & black summer truffle.

OMG. The egg yolk has a thin crunchy exterior and then it oozes beautifully onto the beef. YUMMY MAX!

Cream of green beans with egg pasta, pennyroyal and bottarga. Everything's perfect together. LOVE.

Fried smoked eggplants with ricotta ravioli and octopus in pizzaiola style. I love the ravioli, but the flavor combination could have been a little better...

Meditteranean tuna in potato crust with chard, fava beans and mango mayonnaise. I love how each potato "dome" is meant to be different instead of uniform. Flavor wise, my favorite part of this dish is the veggie. Nicely cooked and well seasoned.

Traditional Italian sorbet. Very tangy & refreshing! However, I wish that the green juice wasn't for aesthetics only..

Warm chocolate olive oil cake with strawberry sorbet and balsamic vinegar.

My, oh my! Very yummy!

The petit four, those babies in tiny cute glasses are yummy creamy milky treats with a punch of chilli! I love love love it!
I ended my epic meal with a cup of hot mint tea :)

I'm so going back for more! 

Thank you Chef Luca, Nicholini's and Conrad Hotel for the lovely dinner.

Wanna know more?
Here's the Openrice link.
My friend Gary's review.