Monday, January 9, 2012

Sunday Cooking Dash: Toast Bread, Coconut Rice, Baked Mac-n-Cheese, Tom Yum Fried Rice

First week of January 2012 had gone by. My brain is like a German diesel, slowly increasing its cycle. How's your first week of 2012?

My wife reserves Sunday for her personal Cooking Dash session. 

No, she doesn't play games, but the way she cooks is probably faster than I can write a "Hello, World" program in Java (considering Java is... verbose).

What do you do with an almost expired loaf of bread? Do you

  • Throw it away?
  • Eat them all?
  • ... or something else?
If you were like us, we opted for the last option: toast the bread to extend its expiry date. It's pretty simple, spread a little bit of butter and sprinkle some sugar on top of those slice of breads and toast them.
A simple, cheap, and good snack
Note: we didn't use regular white bread, instead the whole-wheat multi-grain ones. 

First on the list had been crossed. Onto the next one: coconut rice. This one will be for Sunday's dinner and Monday's lunch.

Wife starts the coconut rice dish by preparing the eggs first. Cook em omelette style (with no additional ingredients, just eggs, salt, and pepper). We like them very thin for the coconut rice dish.

Not done yet here
Slice them eggs into a noodle-like shaped
Now, onto the secret ingredient for the coconut rice! Well, it's not really a secret. It's just coconut milk, bay leaves, and lemongrass. 

Preparing for the base
Steam the rice with the above base (and spices)
Don't forget to throw away the bay leaves and lemongrasses. You're not supposed to eat them.

Omelette? Done. Coconut Rice? Done. Next is the deep-fried chicken (marinated with 7 secret spices). This is not the typical KFC-style deep-fry by the way.

We try to live healthy thus we have a mandate to have vegetable dish along with the main dish. Wife stir-fried long beans with chili and garlic as the veggie option.

So far she has completed 2 dishes and 1 snack and it's not even 2 PM. 

Guess what my duty was? ... sweep the whole house with a very annoying broom. And don't forget to vacuum all the carpets and hard-to-reach-spots. 

At least I was lucky enough not to have to sweep and mop. 

Next on her to-do list was baked mac-n-cheese baby! 

Boiled the water and throw those cute macaronis in.
We like ours in between al dente and tender.
Let's prepare the mixed eggs, milk, and cheese.

Gratted Cheese
4 Big Giant (Organic) Eggs

We've been buying Avalon Dairy milk for a while. Supporting local organic produce.

Mixed them all to bind the macaroni.

Macaroni binder
Add your favourite choice of meat: smoke beef, ham, anything other than brocoli
Once it's ready, baked it in the oven at 350F for more or less one hour.

... and voila! Baked Mac-n-Cheese ready to be consumed for afternoon snack.

By the way, since baking the Mac-n-Cheese took a while, wife decided to cook for Mondays dinner/Tuesday lunch as well. It made sense for us to stack the tasks on Sunday so we don't have to rush Monday after work.

Monday/Tuesday menu had been decided to be Tom Yum fried-rice. Yup, sounds a bit off the field wasn't it?

Ingredients: Tom-Yum paste (we're too lazy to come up with original seasoning), squid, prawns, chicken, fish cake, cilantro, green onion.

Monday Dinner/Tuesday Lunch menu
This is the first time we cooked this dish and we love it. We can taste the Tom Yum in the fried-rice! two awesome taste merged in one dish.

Dishes completed, washing was left to the assistant chef, a.k.a me.

Yep, pretty crowded
Next we prepared Monday lunch and set aside the Tom Yum fried-rice for Tuesday lunch.

For Tuesday lunch, we added Ngo Hiang and Roulade. Wife made them a few days before and froze them.

Once all the actions were completed, it's time to enjoy the rest of the day tasting our earlier effort.

... with the coconut we cracked open yesterday.

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