Taiwanese Beef Noodles made with Dutch oven

My go-to recipe for a hearty meal full of braised tender beef, vegetables and plenty of carbssss!

Sluuuurp~


Ingredients:

  • 2 pounds meaty beef short ribs
  • 2 onions
  • 2 tomatoes
  • 3 slices of peeled fresh ginger, smashed
  • 1 bunch scallions, white parts smashed with flat side of a large knife and green parts chopped
  • 1.5 cup Chinese rice wine
  • ¾ cup soy sauce
  • 1 fresh red chile
  • 3 tablespoons of Doubanjiang
  • 3 cups of water
  • 1 teaspoon of freshly grinded pepper
  • 2-3 cubes of rock sugar
  • 10 ounces dried Chinese wheat noodles
  • Bok Choy for garnishing

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 180 deg C.
  2. Cut onions and tomatoes into wedges, scallions into sections.
  3. Chop short ribs into 3-inch cubes.
  4. Heat the olive oil in a large Dutch oven. Add the onions, tomatoes, scallions and ginger slices and cook over medium heat for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onion is lightly browned.
  5. Dry the beef cubes with paper towels. Toss into the Dutch oven, sear the beef in the hot oil for 3 to 5 minutes, turning to brown on all sides.
  6. Add the soya sauce, water plus Chinese rice wine, just enough to almost cover the meat.
  7. Add the rock sugar, pepper and Doubanjiang , toss in red chili. Bring to a simmer.
  8. Cover the pot with a tight-fitting lid and place it in the oven for about 2.5 hours or until the meat and vegetables are very tender when pierced with a fork.
  9. Serve with noodles and bok choy!

 

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A woman’s love affair with doughnuts

There is no doubt that Bostonians love doughnuts. After all, there’s a Dunkin’ Donuts on every other block. The city even has a doughnut named after it (Boston Creme, anyone?). I mean, who can blame them? There’s something special about that fluffy, sugary, fried dough. I am not from Boston, but I’m in no way above the temptation of fried dough goodness. When Krispy Kreme closed all its stores in Hong Kong overnight ten years ago, a part of me was taken away…  Since then I go on a doughnut hunt whenever I’m out of town, independent joints or big chains, I visit them piously, almost like pilgrims.

These local doughnut places in Boston have survived the turf wars with Dunkin’ Donuts, many supported for years by a fiercely loyal clientele… and it’s not hard to tell why!


Union Square Donuts

20 Bow St, Somerville, MA 02143

Brown Butter Hazelnut Crunch is a real show stealer

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Kane’s Donuts

90 Oliver St, Two International Pl, Boston, MA 02110

Great selection of fancy donuts. Go for glazed and creme brûlée if you’re committed to an ultimate sweet tooth experience.

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Twin Donuts

501 Cambridge St, Allston, MA 02134

Highlight is definitely the inviting neon sign!

Blackbird Doughnuts

South End, 492 Tremont St, Boston, MA 02116

We all need a confetti doughnut from time to time to celebrate life!

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Red Apple Farm

100 Hanover St, The Boston Public Market, Bostom, MA 02108

An apple a day keeps the doctor away…
So, why not eat your apple in donuts form?

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Flour Bakery

12 Farnsworth St, Boston, MA 02210

Not really a doughnut shop, but the bakery’s renowned sticky sticky bun, especially when fresh out of the oven, mimics the flavours of  a doughnut.

 

Under the Tassie Sun

Happy year of the rooster everyone!

After the non-stop family gatherings and reunion meals over the past three days, my life seemed to go back to normal. I finally have time to sort out all the photos from my Tasmania trip. I feel a growling rumble in my stomach while going through the films, and it wasn’t because I haven’t had enough of turnips cakes, my all-time favourite…

Just like any other wanderluster, I have an constant yearning for new tastes and discoveries. “Under the Tassie Sun” summarized my adventure from the North to the South of Tasmania. Starting in Launceston, Tasmania’s second’s city that has forever been locked in rivalry with Hobart, but to me somehow has the zestier food scene, to the humble but charming seafood shack in Freycinet. Up long winding roads and down farm tracks, through blazing sun and misty rain, I visited producers and local shops that are fighting the big corporations and creating artisanal products to sell with pride. I fell in love with the delicious giant oysters and all the colourful dishes that radiated the true spirits of summer (and don’t get me started on the affordable but very flavoursome wine).

At the end of the trip, I returned home with my suitcase laden with all the edible souvenirs like jasmine infused honey, whisky marmalade, but most importantly a grateful heart to all the people who welcomed me into their farms and shops, shared with me their passion for food. I hope u like my photos and enjoy Tasmania as much as I did. Bon Voyage!

Fantastic sauces to sample that have been made on site using only fresh local ingredients. I’m amazed by all kinds of sauces they came up with, an excellent variety from sweet to savoury, with Whisky Seville Marmalade being my personal favourite.

You can buy their products in HK at Feather & Bone.

Tasmanian Gourmet Sauce Company: 174 Leighlands Rd, Evandale TAS 7212

Longford- a country town full of colonial charm.

Evandale’s Sunday market is one of the highlights of the trip. Unlike most food markets in the states or in Europe, where the selection is excellent, but resellers run most stands. In Evandale the producers (farmers) run the majority, you really get to interact with each and everyone of them and listen to all their stories about starting up a local business.

Breakfasts on the road usually means a cup of black coffee plus a flaky croissant at best. In Evandale’s Sunday Market I enjoyed some extremely scrumptious homemade baked goods thanks to Anabel! I’m already missing her orange loaf cake which had an unapologetic burst of citrus flavour.

Evandale Sunday Market: Falls Park, Logan Road, 7212 Evandale                                              (open every Sunday from 8am to 1:30pm)

A charming restaurant with an interesting fusion menu. I seldom go to the same restaurant twice when I travel but I made an exception for this one. With great expectations when i returned for breakfast and it didn’t disappoint. Loved the rye waffles and the omelette made with slow cooked pork and kimchi!

Stillwater: 2 Bridge Rd, Launceston TAS 7250

Highly recommend Black Cow Bistro, another establishment by the Stillwater team, which serves some pretty solid steaks. My wagyu filet was melt-in-the-mouth perfection!

Black Cow Bistro: 70 George St, Launceston TAS 7250

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All things lavender from the jam to the scones to the cookies! Since when did I become so girly?!

Bridestowe Lavender Estate: 296 Gillespies Rd, Nabowla TAS 7260

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Sheffield- a picturesque town, in literal sense, is effectively Tasmania’s outdoor art gallery. There are more than 80 murals adorning its buildings.

Situated on the Main St of Ross, the Ross bakery Inn, is a heritage building from the early 1800’s which was once a horse-drawn carriage stop. Along side the Inn is the famous Ross Village Bakery. By all means try their vanilla slice and scallop pie, totally worth a detour!

Ross Bakery: 15 Church St, Ross TAS 720

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A nice joint to stop by for a quick seafood taste before heading to the wineglass bay. Highly recommend the oyster trio as you get to eat them in various ways instead of just having them with lemon.

Freycinet Marine Farm: 1784 Coles Bay Rd, Coles Bay TAS 7215

Love everything about this modern farm! Tim and Jane and their family dogs, Billy and Sandy are super friendly. As weird as it sounds, I had the best scones in my life there… The clotted cream made by Jane gives an unique decadent consistency and a wonderful flavor.  It’s quite thick and spreadable, and when you slather it on a freshly baked scone there is no better thing in the world.

Curringa Farm: 5831 Lyell Hwy, Hamilton TAS 7140

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Fruit always tastes better when you pick it yourself!!

Sorell Fruit Farm: 174 Pawleena Rd, Sorell TAS 7172

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See you soon Tassie! ❤

Whirlwind to Sydney in 36 hours

Question: What do you do when you are in Sydney?

Answer: EAT, visit some friends, go to the Sydney harbor, Bondi Beach…

Question: What do you do when you are in Sydney, and you have been there a few times before?

Answer:  EAT, you can still visit your friends, I guess…

Question: What do you do when you are in Sydney, you have been there a few times before and this time you are there for 36 hours only?

Answer: Oh, that leaves only eating!

Question: Where then can I find something good to eat in Sydney?

Answer: Go to these places!!


The first thing to draw your eyes in this patisserie is the trays of delicately constructed slices of cakes- watermelon cakes in particular. Topped with strawberries and edible flowers this dessert is just heavenly freshness! There is a generous slice of watermelon in the middle, but the layers of evenly spread almond meal help to absorb the moisture and stop the watermelon from making the whole cake soggy.

Newtown is an interesting neighbourhoods, the beating heart of Sydney’s bohemian arts scene. Do spend some time exploring the local art galleries and street art murals afterwards.

Black Star Pastry Newtown: 277 Australia St, Newtown NSW 2042

A must-go whenever I’m in town! While oyster is a popular choice for many, I had my heart stolen by the scampi sashimi long ago. Originated from NZ, the scampi is slit down the center which allows you to easily split the crustacean into halves and pull out the sweet and buttery flesh that literally melts away in one’s mouth. Absolutely divine!

Sydney Fish Market: Bank St & Pyrmont Bridge Road, Sydney NSW 2009

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My favorite hotcakes in the whole wide world. Period.

bills: 359 Crown St, Surry Hills NSW 2010

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Instead of macarons, these colorful babies are called zumbarons here. The name may be different but they taste as good- light and crisp with a gooey center, just the way they should be.

p.s. glad to see more and more zumbo stores, not just in Sydney, but across the entire Australia!

Zumbo Patisserie: 296 Darling St, Balmain NSW 2041

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Warning: Contains Outrageously Good Doughnuts

A rapidly growing doughnut chain, Australians’ equivalent of Krispy Kreme that sells yummy, funky and not so little doughnuts!! I love the quirky little names they give to each of them. Love At First Bite is my personal favorite — a doughnut covered in cinnamon sugar and filled with half a bottle of Nutella.

Doughnut Time: 500 George St, Sydney NSW 2000

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A rarity: Sydney when it drizzles. The city keeps surprising me in one way or the other.

An Edible Roadtrip in California Part II- SF and its excursions

Set along the ocean, with compact network of steep rolling hills and the iconic cable cars, San Francisco is one the most beautiful cities in the United States and the jewel of Northern California. The city is full of history, hip neighbourhoods and a whole lot of eateries…

My heart swoons every time when I see this photo ♥

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San Francisco has long been famous for its sourdough bread, but in the past few years, the city’s more innovative and eclectic bakeries have stolen the spotlight…The trendy white-tiled sweet shop serves up traditional pastries with a twist. They have recently opened their second location in Seoul.

Mr. Holmes Bakehouse: 1042 Larkin St, San Francisco, CA 94109

The restaurant offers amazing view of the Bay Bridge but most importantly the food and service do not disappoint too. The sides (mac and cheese!!) are good and not of the usual Titanic size that you encounter at other American steakhouses.

EPIC Steak: 369 The Embarcadero San Francisco, CA 94105

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The food truck is very easy to miss and trust me, you don’t want to miss this! Hilarious name and even better food. Yum!

The Codmother Fish and Chips: 496 Beach St, San Francisco, CA 94133

Sausalito

Half an hour’s ferry trip from San Francisco, just over the Golden Gate Bridge, is the quiet, scenic city of Sausalito. A popular residential area, this waterside city famously has a large number of striking houseboats.

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Founded in 1937 by Valeriano Jacuzzi, patriarch of the famous hot tub and spa manufacturing family, the winery is one of the largest in the Sonoma Valley, covering several hundred acres. Remember to stop by the Olive Press at the grounds of the vineyard, where you can sample locally pressed oil in interesting flavours, from lime to jalapeño.

Jacuzzi Family Vineyards: 24724 Arnold Dr, Sonoma, CA 95476

 

A grape that produces one of my favoritefood-friendly wines.

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Californians’ favorite burger. One of the fun things about eating there is that you get to order custom-made food, often at no additional cost! Try out the fries in animal style and the neapolitan shake (mixture of chocolate, vanilla and strawberry flavored shakes)!

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California is home to some of the most protected, untouched coastlines in America. Pacific Coast Highway is rated as one of the most beautiful drives in the world.


 

La MaisonTroisgros- Un Jour de Septembre

It’s been 8 months since my visit to Maison Troisgros. The restaurant has been running since 1930, with three generations of the family as chef. It is the only Michelin 3 star restaurant situated in the unlikely setting of Roanne, a town with glorious history as a trading centre due to its situation on the Loire, but now a rather quiet and modest place. The restaurant is truly an oasis amongst such blandness.

I had chosen the menu ” A day of September” and every dish was a delight…

The precision and ease with which Michel Troisgros uses and judges flavors in his dishes is in my experience second to none, the chef is clearly at the peak of his powers. Delicious flavors, elegant presentation and innovative combination of flavors. Troisgros is a culinary dynasty run entirely by family, where tradition is in the making, and perhaps one of the last of its kind in France!

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A gemstone amongst the granite

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Tomato caramelised with sesame and ginger, Puff pastry with fresh white cheese and Egg with safron jelly

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Laminated cornbread with Salted butter from Normandy

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Artichoke pasta, Smoked Mackerel with Orange Zest and Nut Oil

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Oyster, Apricot and Rice, beautifully seasoned with warm Soy Sauce

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Monkfish loin, Sakura blossom, White wine cream sauce with dashi

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Lobster, Coriander, Carrot and Red fruit sauce with Beefheart cabbage

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Cheese served with fruit bread, Tomato jam and Orange marmalade

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Almond and Sabayon Ice Cream

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Shortbread, Rhubarb, Cardamom, Celery ice cream

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Strawberry and fennel arlette, Meringue with coacoa and ginger and Lemon sesame tart

 

La Maison Troisgros

Address: 1 Place Jean Troisgros, 42300 Roanne

Tel: +33 4 77 71 66 97


Taiwan- Yilan

Cycling on the farm roads of Yilan, fringed with healthy looking weeds, feeling the air- light and crisp on my skin, there seemed to be so much space to breathe in. Coming from Hong Kong, where everything is so tightly cramped in, the streets so suffocating in comparison. I couldn’t help but smile, feeling as though I’d climbed from a dim basement to a spacious garden.

Sanshing (Three Stars) town is famous for its spring onion. Unlike our local spring onion with flat stalk/leaf, spring onion in Sanshing has giant round stalk and it’s extra fragrant and flavorful. The restaurants in Yilan take great pride in this local produce; it is commonly incorporated in dishes to add a note of crunchiness and green freshness. Have you ever felt stalked by certain food? Ok, it may sound delusional but this was exactly how I felt when I kept seeing spring onion all over the place… in pancakes, dumplings, or cooked with chicken as skewers… showing the sincerest respect for locally grown ingredients from the Yilan people.