I’ve been missing in action for almost 4 months. Busyness and laziness got the better of me but more on the former. Happy to be back (although I don’t know for how long).
While away, I thought about ending Messy Witchen. But, when I read back what I wrote here, it has imprints from moments and times that I will never get back. So precious. No worry. I’m keeping this preciousss. 💝
In my opinion, sweet potatoes are a tricky thing. No two types are alike. And, they come in different colors, flavors and textures. Some sweet potatoes are perfect for steaming and not frying and vice versa. I’ve tried many sweet potatoes in recent times and the one that I like the best is honey sweet potato which has a beautiful sweetness, is orange in color and has the right kind of texture that’s perfect for both steaming and frying. Ironically it’s from an online grocery delivery platform. I could never find one that’s similar to this one yet. Oh so perfect!
Enough about my favorite sweet potato. I’m sharing this extremely simple sweet potato with butter recipe which I’ve tried with my favorite sweet potato and others. In this recipe, I’m using a yellow sweet potato that I bought from a supermarket. This simple dish makes a beautiful appetizer and snack. Who knew sweet potato and butter (salted) are magic when brought together? I found this combination by accident one day when I was out of bread to accompany my butter. So, why not put it on steamed sweet potato?
Looks like artwork on a plate except it can be eaten. Yes, you need thick butter and it must be more or less as thick as the sweet potato!!! 🧈🤤
I’ve been wanting to try chocolat chaud or French hot chocolate for a while now. Since I won’t be going to France anytime soon, the best solution is to make my own right in the comfort of my home. Making chocolat chaud is as simple as melting chocolate in warm milk. Outrageously easy that there’s no reason not to try and indulge in a cuppa. ☕️
A very decadent chocolat chaud that’s worthy of my mom’s China!
I always wonder how come I don’t encounter more dishes that use the super addictive crispy pork lard aka chu yau char 猪油渣. I mean besides adding to char kuey teow, tai chow, noodle dishes (dried & soup) and eating it as is, what else can we use it for? Well, I found a stir-fried cabbage with crispy pork lard side dish from Yunnan, China. Do you know who is Dianxi Xiaoge? This dish was presented as one of the Chinese New Year (CNY) dishes by her and I thought it was so apt.
She didn’t share a recipe in the video, so I adapted from what I saw and present you with my version of stir-fried cabbage with crispy pork lard. Btw, don’t you think these moreish crispy pork lard, also known as crispy pork cracklings look like gold nuggets? That’s why I think it suits CNY very well. As CNY is not over yet, why not whip this up and surprise your family?
Stir-fried cabbage with crispy gold nuggets… err I mean crispy pork lard. Quick, grab as much gold as you can! And, don’t forget the cabbage. Hahaha
Bakkwa 肉乾 or ròu qián (pronounced as rou gan) or Chinese dried meat is ohhh so lip-smacking good. 👍😋🤤❤️ Once you tried it you will love it for life! This smoky, salty and sweet dried jerky meat is usually made from pork because Chinese loves pork! There are also bakkwa made from chicken, beef and yup, turkey and ostrich. Bakkwa is thin and square in shape but in recent years you can also find bakkwa in a thin round shape symbolizing coin aka money and then there’s also bacon bakkwa. Bakkwa is available all year round but very popular during Chinese New Year (CNY) and there are usually long queues outside those famous bakkwa shops a few weeks before CNY.
I remember being basked in the wonderful bakkwa smokes whenever we pass by bakkwa shops at Chinatown aka Petaling Street, Kuala Lumpur during CNY preparation years back. Our clothes would smell like bakkwa long after! These shops would charcoal grill the bakkwa just outside their shops and direct the smoke with a few fans towards the main road. In a way, yes it’s hazardous but it’s a wonderful marketing tactic to draw potential customers (like me) into their shops with their addictive and fragrant bakkwa aromas. You can’t find this experience any more at Petaling Street.
I wanted to make bakkwa for a while now because I found out we can actually make bakkwa at home. Besides, the prices of bakkwa have been steadily rising year after year. In another word, it’s expensive yo! So, I finally made bakkwa… woohoo BUT buttttttt I don’t have soy sauce on hand, one of the main ingredients to make bakkwa. I used shoyu koji 醤油糀 instead and thus 🤩🌟 shoyu koji bakkwa 🌟🤩 was born.
Shoyu koji bakkwa 醤油糀肉乾 is a fusion bakkwa where China meets Japan. The enzymes in shoyu koji tenderize the meat and as well as adding more oomph!
p/s: Noticed the uneven thickness? I’ll talk about it more below.
Hmmm… fermented chili bean curd needs to be used up before they start disintegrating (as a result of keeping it for too long). And, I have green dragon vegetables and king oyster mushrooms in the fridge. Let’s pair them up! 😍 And, that’s how this stir-fried green dragon vegetables and king oyster mushrooms with fermented chili bean curd dish was born. Phew, what a mouthful! I wonder if this is the longest recipe title in Messy Witchen? 🤔
This stir-fried green dragon vegetables and king oyster mushrooms with fermented chili bean curd dish may look simple but it sure packs a punch! 🥊
Does anyone have unfed/discard sourdough starter on hand? I highly recommend using ’em in this sourdough date cranberry walnut muffins recipe. Why? Because it’s so yummy! And yes, you can make muffins using sourdough. I was just as bewildered as some of you now when I found out we can use unfed/discard sourdough starter to make many things.
Initially, I thought unfed/discard sourdough starter can only be used in a few things such as sourdough pancakes and sourdough crackers as I always hear sourdough bakers talk about them. Turns out they can be repurposed for practically any recipe as long as the recipe contains flour and liquid.
These sourdough date cranberry walnut muffins light up my life. 😍😋 They’re not loud or cranky but right at home!