have you ever had this nagging feeling of what to cook whenever a festive season is around the corner? what mood do i want to create? i want it to be different but not too overwhelming for my guests....who am i inviting? what is the occasion? are they adults or children? big eaters or mousy eaters? well there is room for everyone... read on.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

A Regular Home-cooked Chinese Meal

Occassionally, I get this strange nagging feeling that I should be using chopsticks and rice bowls for a nice warm comfortable sit down meal instead of the regular one pot, one plate or even the economy rice-styled kind of 'everything on a plate thingy'. Life can be so hectic at times until there is no time to savour the lovely dishes cooked.
Today is not that type of day, I simply won't allow it! A little chinese setting dinner seems so invitingly heart warming with a pot of hot chinese oolong tea warming up the dining table corner. Just 3 simple dishes cooked with love and placed attractively on the table, surrounded by a few well decorated bowls of steaming white fluffy basmathi rice and dark elegant chopsticks purchased directly from Shanghai, China.
Five-Spice Pork Strip 600 gm pork shoulder (usually sold cut in a 4' round slab) 3 cloves garlic (smashed) 5 slices of ginger 2 star anise 1 cinnamon stick 2 Tbsp chinese five spice powder Dark soya sauce Light soya sauce white pepper and sea salt to taste
  1. Marinate the pork shoulder slabs with chinese five spice powder overnite in the refrigerator.
  2. Drizzle a heated non-stick pan with some grapeseed oil and throw in the garlic, ginger, cinnamon stick and star anise.
  3. Fry till fragrant.
  4. Put in all the marinated pork shoulder and sear the slabs till lightly browned.
  5. Drizzle in some dark and light soya sauce.
  6. Add a little hot water and allow it to simmer on low fire for 40 minutes or until pork slabs are tender and can easily be pierce through with a paring knife.
  7. Add white pepper and salt to taste.
  8. Cut pork shoulders into bite-size strips and garnish with some coriander leaves.
Baby Bok Choy with Garlic Oil 500 gm of baby bok choy (rinse well and drained - peeled off some leaves and leave the heart intact) Olive oil 2 cloves garlic (chopped)
  1. Blanche baby bok choy in hot boiling water for 20 seconds and rinse under cold running water.
  2. Drain and set aside in the serving plate.
  3. Heat olive oil in a small saucepan and put in chopped garlic. Stir until they turn slighly light brown, cut off fire and remove from hob.
  4. Pour over baby bok choy and drizzle a little light soya sauce over it and serve.


  • Audrey - all your home-cooked dishes look very homey and delish. Can I eat at your place the next time I go back to Malaysia? ;)

  • Bee Yinn, shall correspond with u once my e-mail get sorted out ... when are u back again?

  • I can eat two bowl of rice with these delicious dishes..Yummy.


  • MmmmMmmm...yummy! Your five-spice pork strip looks so good. Love your blog and beautiful pictures! :)

  • Hey Audrey,

    I don't know yet but I am always very ready to just hop on a flight and go back.

    Yes, do drop me a line when you have your email access. I know it must be frustrating, the last two days had been exceedingly frustrating to me and my Previous Posts is still messed up!

  • Audrey, I have a bag of basmathi rice but guess what, I don't know how to cook it. Do I do the same with normal rice? Don't ask me why I buy it though. Can't imagine pairing up with your five spice pork dish. Awesome.

  • Hi Tehsee, do try these recipes and let me know your results!

    Thanks Little Corner, your blog is pretty interesting too.

    Bee Yinn, Hope your mess is sorted out already.

    Edith, basmathi rice is cooked the same way as normal fragrant rice but is more nutritious and has more bite. It's not as soft as normal rice. If it gets too hard, just add a little hot water into the rice cooker and press the on button again if you are using the normal rice cooker. Pairs up great with curries! btw... have u tried the five spice pork dish? if yes, did u like it?

  • OH JOY!!! I thought I was quite a hopeless cook when it comes to veg. I've been boiling them, then only putting fried garlic with soysauce over them!

    Y'see, my stir-frying of green veg is truly truly bad..I tend to overcook them..whereelse, with boiling, I always take them out, before they overcook!

    Thank you thank you thank you! I'm gonna link you up to my blog..it's ok?

    I'm desperately looking for things to cook at my impromptu xmas party!!


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I'm Audrey from Somewhere in my kitchen, Malaysia.

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