Wednesday, January 20, 2010 ;
I posted on the cooker hob not done yet earlier.
Once it was done, we couldn't wait to start cooking our own meals. Here's the very first meal cooked on the gas hob. :-)
I tried the Boeuf Bourguignon (adapted from Mastering the art of French cooking) recipe made famous by the movie Julie and Julia. Dh and I caught the movie together, and after watching Julie try Julia Child's recipe 2x, I was so tempted to try it myself. It looked so mouth-wateringly good.
But oh my, it was soooooo time consuming and requires so much effort. Furthermore it is expensive to assemble all those ingredients here. After doing it once and trying it, I think that'll be my only attempt for a long time to come. Already, with 2 kids, I found it such a hassle to get it out in time for dinner, and was losing my temper with the boys for "disturbing" me while I needed to concentrate on getting it done... Cannot imagine when the 3rd one arrives...
Dh also felt that the beef stews I made before this are comparable in taste anyway, and they require much less effort and time.
Ok, so the pic shows the beef dish on the left. Ladies' fingers with ikan bilis on the right. That was our one dinner. In contrast, the veggie dish took several minutes to put together compared to the few hours of the beef one!!
I have been slowly adding to my kitchen "collection". I love to bake, so I grabbed a good deal when Mayer at Jurong Point was having the year-end sales, and was throwing in many freebies and cooking classes to boot... Got a Kitchenaid Artisan Mixer. So happy with it.
Then when Courts and Harvey Norman were having a sale for steamers (both Philips and Tefal brands were on sale, thanks Phebe for alerting me!), I rushed and got myself the Tefal steamer at a steal! I don't have a microwave oven and don't intend to get one since I have read many articles warning about its use, so I needed something to heat up soups and dishes. A steamer works well in addition to the stove and oven (depending on whether it is a dry or liquid food).
And I was also inspired by Phebe's blog where she steamed many different dishes.
This is one of the first things I tried: steam fish.
Yummy... Clean and fast. Really easy. So we are very very satisfied with our buy. (only thing, I have to chop up my fish into 2 portions to fit the steamer tiers, so you see half of a pomfret here, hee).
So far, I have tried 2 kinds of pomfrets with it. The silver pomfret was really good.
I have since also cooked rice in it (for fun, cos mainly we use the rice cooker), steamed hard boiled and half boiled eggs, sweet potatoes, potatoes (for mashing), xiaobaicai, broccoli... and used it to heat up many things.
It is so wonderful to have my own kitchen!!!
Then the oven. I began baking my banana cakes, and various breads. Since breads are what we eat very often and what the kids love, I have mainly been making various kinds of breads, the most common of which is just the plain white variety we use for breakfast each morning.
Here's one early morning before the kids head off for school. They usually have bread with peanut butter, cheese or kaya or buttered toast.
Then I also made some milk bread and cheese bread. The cheese bread was so cheesy.... the kids loved it a lot but it was really too rich for frequent consumption: see the amount of cheese I had to put in it (foreground, compared to the milk bread in the background).... So I didn't bake it daily, so far, only once.
Oh yes, forgot, the steamer can be used to steam pumpkin also. Here's another meal, I think it was the 2nd or 3rd one. After taking the pic, I forgot. French beans with mushrooms, pumpkin and pork rib with carrot soup. My mom stir fried the pumpkin first and then I steamed it. ds1 loves pumpkin, but ds2 hates it. They are soooooo different.
These few days, I have slowed down my baking and cooking already. On one hand, I feel as if the birth is imminent so I shouldn't buy too much at the wet market, and hence I don't cook so much. And then, I feel very tired after all the wash up, so I cook less to minimise wash up.
Final reason is, I got a strong nesting instinct now to clear up stuff, and wash all the baby clothes and nappies. And I keep being irritated by mess and dust, so I spend a lot of time cleaning the house these few days. That means I should be birthing within 2 weeks, I guess.... haha
rainbows every day, do not worry for the morrow