Monday, September 22, 2014

VeganMofo 2014: #6 Mee Pok Tah

Mee Pok Tah is a common dish found in the Singapore hawker centers. Mee Pok is a flat egg noodle and Tah means dry (there's also a soup version). You can find egg-free version in Asian supermarkets. They cook really fast so don't idle too long when you're boiling them. 

I used vegan "fish" balls and shredded soy meat. For the sauce, I used:
1 tsp vegan fish sauce
2 tsp black vinegar
2 tbsp ketchup or chili

Place sauce on the bottom of the bowl, then bean sprouts, then noodle, vegan fish balls, and soy meat. Garnish with green onion. The person will then proceed to mix the noodle with the sauce (it's part of the fun). Or at least that's how they served it in the hawker center!

These dishes do seem devoid of vegetables so I usually add bok choy or other Asian greens to the dish to be more nutritionally complete.

Emma wants to know what you're eating today!

VeganMoFo 2014: #5 Radish Cake (Chai tao kway)

Radish/turnip cake is a common dim sum dish. In Singapore, they eat a plainer version with dark soy sauce seasoning. (Pretty much all their food uses dark soy sauce it seems.) I was pleased with my first try at though it came out a little stiffer than what I remembered eating in the restaurants. It's pretty labor & time intensive with the grating and steaming but well worth it in the end! I used this recipe from Rasa Malaysia:

Bunny was caught digging a hole in the sofa again. My sofa cover is no use!

Sunday, September 7, 2014

VeganMoFo 2014: #4 Nasi Lemak

Nasi Lemak is a coconut rice dish that's usually served on a huge banana leaf. The meat version has shrimp and eggs. I served with vegan battered fish instead. Cucumbers and roasted peanuts are customary. 

I've spent more time in the bathroom these past few months than I have in my whole life combined (I think). Just to keep this quarantined cat company. :)

Friday, September 5, 2014

VeganMoFo 2014: #3 Mee Goreng

Mee Goreng was another dish I tried in Singapore. I found an already vegan recipe from
Go make it, it's so simple and good!

My version didn't have potatoes (I was in a hurry). I added yu choy vegetables for some greens and the last half of the shrimp bites to finish it off. Don't do that though as the taste was overpowering in this dish. 

The beauty of mee goreng is in the sauce. "Ketchup in stir fry noodle?!?" you might say skeptically. Just give it a try and let me know what you think!

Today's dish is brought to you by:

She's a stray kitty we found in the bushes. She's currently quarantined in the bathroom due to ringworms but we bring her to the yard for some exercise and fresh air every day. She loves it!

VeganMoFo 2014: #2 Pineapple Fried Rice

Ever since I ate pineapple rice in a restaurant served in a carved out pineapple, I've never forgotten it. Here is my vegan interpretation with help of mock shrimp bites that add color and a fun chewy texture to the dish. 

I eyeballed the recipe and it goes something like this:

3 cloves garlic, minced
1 small shallot, minced
1 can pineapple chunks, or freshly cut
Half bag of shrimp bites
1 cup cashew, toasted
4 cups cooked rice
1 tsp tumeric
spring onion for garnishing

2 tbsp soy sauce
4 tbsp pineapple sauce

It's best to use day old rice but I made mine a couple of hours before cooking and stuck it in the fridge to cool and dry out a bit. 

Heat a bit of oil in a large pan then add garlic and shallot. Fry until lightly golden. 

Add the vegan shrimp bites and cook until it's heated through, 1-2 min.

Add the cooked rice, using hand to unclump it if necessary. Add tumeric and toss around to distribute yellow coloring evenly. 

Add sauce, pineapple, and cashew. Mix well. Add spring onion when just about done. 

Authentic recipes add raisins but I don't like raisins in my rice so I left it out!

Please note I made four cups of rice so that we could eat it for two meals. Saves time and effort!

These are the bunny residents. They too wish you bon appetite! Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, September 1, 2014

VeganMoFo 2014: #1 Char Kway Teow

"Oh wow, Em, look at all these new visitors. They look hungry -- I'm scared."

"Don't worry, Lu. They're just people from VeganMoFo. Put your best face forward, maybe they'll throw us some veggie scraps."

For my first VeganMoFo post, I'll share my favorite stir fry noodle. Char Kway Teow is a popular dish in Singapore. It uses flat rice noodle, which you can buy fresh in Asian markets or you can buy dry and boil it. Fresh is better of course!

Don't let the dark color turn you off. The sauces used give it a very robust taste. The meat version usually has some sort of seafood and eggs. In this vegan version, we omit the seafood and use tofu to substitute the egg.

Flat rice noodle
a block of tofu, pressed & crumbled 
Asian greens 
handful of bean sprout
1 tbsp garlic 
1 tbsp shallot 
1 green onion
oil for frying

2 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp dark soy sauce 
1 tbsp kecap manis (sweet soy sauce)
1 tbsp vegetarian oyster mushroom sauce
1 tsp sugar 
5 tbsp water

1. Mix together the sauce.
2. Heat oil in large pan or wok. Add garlic and shallot and stir until golden. 
3. Add noodle and sauce. Stir for a minute. 
4. Push noodle to one side of pan and add crumbled tofu. Fry 1-2 min. 
5. Add vegetable and bean sprout, cook another minute. 
6. Add green onion. Mix well. 

For an authentic taste, serve with vegan belachan (a chili paste) if you can find it. A friend brought us some from Singapore. I can't take spice and this dish tastes just as delicious without! 

VeganMofo 2014

Hallo, dear readers! Welcome back to the VeganWheekers for VeganMofo 2014. 

My reasons for joining this year are threefold:
1. To get back into writing
2. To develop the habit of planning meals
3. To cook recipes I've saved but never got around to (you can relate, right?)

My theme this year is vegan ethnic Asian food. For most of the dishes, I've never eaten the meat version before so the authenticity is up for debate. I welcome your tips and suggestions to improve them.

I'll also introduce my new four legged family members throughout the month. Life is never dull with two guinea pigs, two bunnies, and a currently quarantined kitty. 

Let the games begin!