Thursday, April 28, 2011

火雞魚片粥/Turkey and Fish Congee

 I made this congee last week while I was making the Broccolini and Smoked Salmon Salad in Ginger Dressing.  Congee is a perfect comfort food when you are not feeling well and it always goes well with Chinese salad.  Congee is also very easy to make, that's why I did a video about it - just so you know how simple it is.  A lot of people emailed me asking what congee is.  I guess it's not that common in the western world.  To make Cantonese congee, white rice is boiled in many times its weight in water for a long time until the rice breaks down and becomes a fairly thick white porridge.  Congee can be made in a pot or in a rice cooker.  Some rice cookers have a "congee" setting, allowing congee to be cooked overnight.  In my video, I prepared about 3 bowls of plain congee and if you follow my instructions you will be able to enjoy a very comforting meal within 20 minutes.  If you have trouble making plain congee you can just make some really soft rice instead.  So what are you waiting for?  Give it a try!


  • 3 bowls of plain congee
  • 3 oz ground turkey meat
  • 4 oz white fish
  • 1 tsp chopped green onion
  • Half tsp salt

To marinate the fish:

  • Half tsp salt
  • 1 egg white
  • 1 tsp cornstarch
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • Half tsp cooking wine

To Marinate the turkey meat:

  • 1 tsp cornstarch
  • Half tsp salt
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp chopped green onion


  1. Marinate the turkey meat.
  2. Slice the fish, make sure not to slice it too thin.  Marinate the fish.
  3. In a non-stick medium pot, add all the plain congee and 2 - 3 cups of hot water.  Stir evenly and then cover, bring to a boil.  After about 2 minutes, add the marinated turkey meat.  Cover, about 2 minutes, add the fish slices.  Make sure to add the slices one by one.  Stir everything evenly, add salt.  Cover, let it cook for 4 - 5 minutes.  Now transfer to serving bowls.  Enjoy!

    Wednesday, April 27, 2011

    三文魚小西蘭花沙拉/Broccolini and Smoked Salmon Salad in Ginger Dressing

     I made a Broccolini Salad in Sesame Dressing in my previous recipe, and it was delicious.  So I wanted to make broccolini salad again but with different ingredients.  I used smoked salmon to add a westcoast flavor and make this dish more tasty and nutritious.  This dish can be a full meal and it's very healthy.  Smoked salmon is always my favourite and I'm very lucky because the westcoast has the best smoked salmon.  Since I'm using salmon I picked a ginger dressing because ginger always goes well with any seafood.  I bought this Japanese ginger dressing from a local grocery store, and it is a very common staple at Asian grocery stores if you can't find it at a local store.  I also made a video for this recipe, please enjoy!


    • 10 oz Broccolini
    • 3 oz salmon
    • 1 tsp olive oil
    • ½ tsp salt

    For the dressing:

    • 1 tsp ground garlic
    • 1 tsp ground ginger
    • 1 tbsp chopped green onion
    • 2 chopped red chili peppers
    • 2 - 3 tbsp ginger Dressing
    • 1 tsp sesame oil
    • Half tsp roasted sesame seeds
    • 1 tsp cilantro


    1. Bring half a medium pot of water to a boil.  Add oil and salt to the water - this will help to keep the broccolini green.
    2. Blanche the broccolini in boiling water for 1 - 2 minutes.  Don't cook it for too long or the stalks will get soft and limp.  Transfer broccolini to a plate, let cool.
    3. In a mixing bowl, mix all the ingredients for the dressing and broccolini evenly.  Transfer the salad to a serving plate and pour all the dressing from the mixing bowl on top of the salad.  Add the smoked salmon to the salad and garnish with cilantro.  Now enjoy your delicious salad.

    Tuesday, April 26, 2011

    蜜汁葡萄烤雞/Honey Raisin Baked Chicken Wings

    It was not fun being sick at home and taking care of my sick baby over the Eastern long weekend while the weather outside was so beautiful.  Just as I started feeling better, the weekend was over and then it started raining.  After all that congee, soup, tea and plain food, I decided to spoil myself and nothing is more indulgent than baked chicken wings!  I already marinated these chicken wings last week before I got sick and kept them in the freezer so these babies should have absorbed all the flavours by now.  Normally I like to keep my marinated BBQ/baked meat in the fridge over night before I put them on the grill or in the oven.  If I have a big BBQ party coming then I will marinate my food a few days early and keep them in the freezer.  That way they will stay fresh when it comes time to bake or grill them.  

    Oh boy!  These chicken wings were so delicious!  I wish you can smell it from the pictures!  I will definitely make it again and next time I will be sure to do a video recipe.  These chicken wings absorb all the delicious flavours from the various ingredients and taste slightly sweet from the honey and raisin.  You can also BBQ them as well but I think they taste even better when you bake them.  After baking, there is still a lot of sauce in the baking pan.  I always save the sauce to pour over the wings making them even juicer!  


    • 1 lb chicken wings
    • 2 tbsp honey
    • Half cup raisin
    • 1 tsp dried cumin
    • 1 tsp roasted sesame seeds
    • 1 tsp caraway seeds
    • 1 tbsp oyster sauce
    • 1 tsp ground black pepper
    • 1 tsp dried red chili flakes
    • 1 tbsp sesame oil
    • 4 tbsp soy sauce
    • 1 tbsp Satay sauce
    • 1 tbsp ground peanut paste
    • 1 tbsp chopped green onion


    1. In a medium baking pan, add all ingredients and mix everything by hand evenly.  
    2. Cover the pan with plastic wrap or a lid and keep in the fridge over night or in the freezer until you are ready to bake.
    3. When you are ready to bake, transfer the pan to the oven.  Bake uncovered, to make the chicken wings even more crispy.  
    4. Set the oven to 400 degrees and bake for 25 minutes.  Flip all the wings over and bake for another 15 - 20 minutes.  Transfer the wings to a serving plate and pour the sauce on top of the wings.  Enjoy!

    Thursday, April 21, 2011

    鮮蝦蘑菇粥/Prawn and Mushroom Congee

    Ok, enough soup postings.  I think I should make something else besides soups and stews.   Ever since we had the lobster congee, I have been craving the fresh taste of congee every day.  We have been eating out this week and both my husband and I were feeling so greasy.  So I thought that tonight is perfect for congee!  On top of that, I feel like I'm coming down with a cold because my nose has started running.  I think it's because I kissed Valentina when she was really sick.  It's hard to resist!  When I'm feeling sick, nothing is better than congee!

    Unlike the lobster congee, I didn't use soup to make it and just cooked the mushrooms and prawns in the congee directly.  This way the congee tastes lighter but still refreshing which is perfect for someone who doesn't have much appetite.  I also made a video for this recipe so that you can see the whole process.


    • 3 bowls of plain congee
    • 6 prawns
    • 4 oz white mushrooms
    • 4 oz pea sprouts
    • 1 tbsp julienned ginger
    • 1 tsp chopped green onion
    • Half tsp salt

    To marinate the prawns:

    • Half tsp salt
    • 1 egg white
    • 1 tsp cornstarch


    1. Cut the prawns down the center of the back and take out the vein.  Marinate the prawns.
    2. Peel the skin off the mushrooms and cut them into small cubes.
    3. In a non-stick medium pot, add all the plain congee and 2 cups of hot water.  Stir evenly and then cover, bring to a boil.  Add julienned ginger, stir and cover.  About 2 minutes, add prawns.  About 1 - 2 minutes, add mushrooms.  Stir everything evenly, add salt.  Cover, let it cook for 2 minutes.  Add pea sprouts and mix everything evenly.  Now transfer to serving bowls.  Enjoy! 

    Wednesday, April 20, 2011

    Yeung Chow Fried Rice Video

    I posted the Yeung Chow Fried Rice recipe a while ago.  I made this video while I was cooking it again last week, hope it helps if you want to try to make this dish.  Enjoy!

    玉米胡萝卜燉雞湯/Chinese Chicken Stock

    Recently, all I have been cooking are soups and stews because I am want fresh soup and stew for my sick baby so she can recover soon.  Chicken soup is always recommended when people get sick.  I remember I once got sick during pregnancy.  I drank 4 - 5 bowls of this chicken soup everyday and the cold was gone so fast.  This soup makes a great chicken stock for soup noodles or other dishes that requires some chicken stock.  This soup tastes a little bit sweet so it's great to use for Cantonese food.  Babies always love sweet foods so it encourages them to drink more and flush out their system when they are not feeling well.


    • 1 lb chicken
    • 5 oz pork back bone 
    • ½ oz sliced ginger
    • 2 honey dates
    • 3 oz carrots
    • 1 corn on the cob
    • 3 quarter tsp salt
    • 2 litres water (about half large pot)


    1. Peel the carrots and cut them into small cubes.  Cut the corn into 2 - 3 pieces.  Peel the skin off the chicken.
    2. In a large soup pot, add pork back bone, chicken, ginger, carrots, honey dates, corn and water.  Bring to a boil.  Reduce the heat, and then use a soup strainer to strain all the dark bubbles on top of the water.  Reduce the heat to the lowest and cook for 2 - 3 hours.  Add salt.  Now you are done!  

    Tuesday, April 19, 2011

    銀耳蒸雪梨/Pear and Sliver Ear Mushroom Stew

    My baby girl Valentina is still not feeling well and has now started coughing.  Taking care of a sick baby is not easy at all!  It breaks my heart seeing my baby suffer.  After becoming a mother, I have a new degree of appreciation for my own mother.  I now understand how much sacrifice my parents made to raise my brother and I.  I remember when I was a kid I got sick all the time and whenever I started coughing my mom always made this Pear and Sliver Ear Mushroom Stew for me.  I have been making this stew for Valentina for a couple of days now, and I feed her a bowl every day after her afternoon nap.  She is slowly getting better and has been coughing less everyday.  Last night she didn't cough at all during sleep.  I just hope she doesn't cough or wake up tonight too!

    Pears are an excellent source of dietary fiber and a good source of Vitamin C.  They are less allergenic than many other fruits which is why pear juice is often the first fruit juice introduced to infants.  Pears are also cool food according to the Chinese Diet Philosophy, and stewing pear to help prevent coughing is a very common homemade remedy in China.   You need to add all the ingredients in a double covered cup and then steam it for a long time in order to get all the nutritions out.  I like to serve it chilled. It tastes better and can be a great snack/drink even for healthy people.


    • A few piece of dried  sliver ear mushroom
    • 1 pear
    • 1 tsp honey
    • 1 tbsp apricot kernels
    • 2 cups of fresh water 


    1. Soak sliver ear mushroom and apricot kernels for 30 minutes before cooking.  Make sure to clean them afterwards.
    2. Core and cut apple into quarters.
    3. In a medium double covered cup, add sliver ear mushroom, pear,  apricot kernels and water (fill up this cup).
    4. Cover the cup and transfer to a steamer.  Once it starts steaming, turn the heat to lower-high and keep steaming for 2 hours.  Then take out from the steamer, let cool for 30 minutes.  Add honey and mix it.  Lastly keep the stew in the fridge and let it chill. 

    Sunday, April 17, 2011

    西洋菜胡萝卜排骨湯/Watercress, Carrot and Pork Rib Soup

    I have been swamped this week because my poor little baby is sick.  She caught a really bad cold at the playground and on the first day she started getting a mild fever.  The doctor doesn't recommend any medication for this age, so I have to help her fight the virus using natural and traditional home remedies.  When a baby is sick, the most important thing is fluids.  I have been feeding her pear juice as a snack and a small bowl of homemade soup after every meal. When she was running a mild fever, I made her this Watercress, Carrot and Pork Rib Soup.  Every time she has this soup she always sweats a lot and the fever usually passes after a day without any medication.

    This soup is similar to my another recipe - Watercress and Pork Rib Soup.  Watercress is categorized as a cold food in Chinese Diet Philosophy and it is very good for people who are running a fever.  Some cold/cool food has a naturally bitter taste.  Watercress usually doesn't taste bitter however if you cook too much of it for too long then it can be slightly bitter.  Adults may not taste the bitterness but babies are very sensitive eaters.  That's why I added carrots and honey dates to bring out the sweetness balance out the watercress perfectly.  Babies always love sweet foods so it encourages them to eat more and flush out their system.


    • 2 bunches of watercress (About 10 oz)
    • 1 lb fresh chopped pork ribs 
    • ½ oz sliced ginger
    • 2 honey dates
    • 3 oz carrots
    • 3 quarter tsp salt
    • 2 liter water (About half large pot)


    1. Peel the carrots and cut them in small cubes.  Clean the watercress.
    2. In a large soup pot, add ribs, ginger, carrots, honey dates and water.  Bring to a boil.  Reduce the heat, and then use a soup strainer to strain all the dark bubbles on top of the water.  Reduce the heat to the lowest and cook for 2 hours then add watercress.  Cook for half an hour, add salt.  Now you are done!  

    Friday, April 15, 2011

    Chinese Diet Philosophy

    Based on the theory of Chinese traditional medicine, all food has a different taste and role in balancing the Yin and Yang.  Foods are divided into cool, cold, warm, hot and natural.

    Hot food makes your body stronger but also makes your body hot so if you eat too much of it you are likely to get pimples.  Cold food calms your body down and helps with digestion and removing toxins from the body, but on the other hand, if you eat too much you may feel less energy.  Cool and warm food are not as strong as cold and hot and they can be categorized similar to natural.  However, it's best to eat warm food in fall and winter, and cool food in spring and summer.  In Chinese cooking it's important to balance out hot and cold ingredients.

    In cases of fever, choose food with a cold nature. For example, use wax gourd, balsam pear and mung bean to in cases of heatstroke.  In cases of colds or flu, select food with warm and hot nature.  For example, use cassia bark and fennel when there is cold and pain in the abdomen.  The idea is to build up one's health through a balanced diet so that your body can be strong while fighting off and preventing infection or colds.  The philosophy behind the Chinese Diet emphasizes prevention and not cure.

    Hot food

    Mustard, trout, cinnamon, cilantro, pepper, chili pepper, peppercorn, lamb, longan, black-bone chicken, coffee, wine, hard alcohol, smoked sausage

    Warm food

    Sticky rice, sorghum, chestnut, jujube, walnut, almonds, chives, fennel, coriander, pumpkin, ginger, garlic, lycheechayote, papaya, mandarin, cherry, pomegranate, plum, pineapple, lime, bergamot orangesilver carp, shrimp, squidsea cucumber, chicken, turkey, octopusbuffalo, durian, crab, dates, lotus, milk

    Natural Food

    Rice, corn, peanuts, soybeans, broad beans, red beans, black beans, peas, lentils, sweet potatoes, potatoes, taros, hazelnuts, sliver ear mushroom, wood ear mushroom, Chinese cabbage, shepherd's-pursekohlrabi, carrots, onions, lemon, plums, figs, grapes, river fish, pomfret, mackerel, carp, crucian carp, abalone, eel fish, loach, eggs, milk, beef, pork, turtle meat, turtle meat, duck.

    Cool Food

    Quinoa, lotus seeds, Chinese apricot kernel, barleywatercress, romainewheat, buckwheat, barley, mung beans, bean sprouts, tofu, water chestnuts, mushrooms, strawberry, eggplant, radish, cantaloupes, luffa, spinach, amaranth, celery, corn, oranges, apples, pears, duck eggs, sesame oil, coix seed, soy milk, beer

    Cold Food

    Bittermelon, tomatoes, cucumber, fern, bamboo shoots, wild rice, sugarcane, persimmon, banana, mulberry, watermelon, Chinese Silk Squash, honeydew, seaweed, clam meat, snail, kiwifruit, aloe

    Thursday, April 14, 2011

    木瓜椰奶雞湯/Red Papaya Coconut Chicken Soup

    This Red Papaya Coconut Chicken Soup is a very well known Chinese beauty soup.  It's so refreshing and delicious!  This soup has a tropical taste and natural sweetness from the papaya coconut milk and it makes a great appetizer before a big meal.  This soup is easy to make and the same as other slow cooked Chinese soups.  It can be stored at room temperature for up to 3 days.  Just make sure to boil it for a few minutes before eating or every 24 hour period.


    • 2 red papaya 
    • About 1 lb chicken (I use a whole chicken)
    • 8 oz pork back bone
    • 1 can of coconut milk
    • 1 oz sliced ginger
    • 1 tbsp salt
    • 2.5 liter water (about half of a large soup pot)


    1. Take off the skin and fat from the chicken.  Peel the skin from the papaya, take out the seeds, and cut the papaya into medium sized cubes.
    2. In a large soup pot, add papaya, chicken, pork back bones, ginger, coconut milk and water. Bring to a boil.  Reduce the heat to the lowest, use a soup strainer to strain all the dark bubbles on top of the water.  Cook for 3 hours, add salt.  Now enjoy your soup!

    Wednesday, April 13, 2011

    My Cooking Channel

    I have been working on my cooking channel recently and have released some videos of my previous recipes because of requests I got from my readers.  If you are also on YouTube, please feel free to subscribe to my cooking channel.  In my upcoming videos, I will show you more recipes, grocery shopping for Chinese ingredients and food adventures.  Please stay tuned and enjoy!

    Saturday, April 9, 2011

    紅油抄手/Wonton Soup in Spicy Sauce

    I love wonton soup.  I watched my mom make wontons when I was a kid and I thought it was the coolest thing ever.  I would choose to eat wonton soup over anything.  After I moved to Hong Kong for University and began living by myself, I found that almost every street corner had a food stand that sold their own version of wonton soup with slight variations on the soup base or the wonton.  However, there was one particular street food stand that I always returned to because their wonton reminded me of my mom's homemade wonton in Chongqing.  Although I had to stand on the street corner while eating it, I still went there at least twice a week for a quick meal.   Every time I went back home to Chongqing to visit my family, my first meal was always a bowl of wonton soup made by my mom.  

    After I moved to Vancouver, Canada, I was really craving my mom's homemade wonton soup.  I went to so many Chinese restaurants just trying to find one that's similar to my mom's but no luck.  So I decided to make it myself.  It's not hard at all!  With my mom's secret ingredients, the wonton will stay soft even if you keep them in the freezer so it's very convenient if you have a family.  We eat homemade wonton soup whenever we are in a hurry and need a quick, comforting and energizing meal.  I made videos about how to make/fold wontons and how to make Chinese wonton soup, and I'm sharing my family secret ingredients with you.  Enjoy!


    • 1 package of wonton wraps
    • 2 oz spinach
    • 1 tbsp chopped green onion
    • 1 cup of duck soup (or any homemade soup)

    For the filling:

    • Half pound ground pork (or ground turkey for Thanksgiving)
    • 4 oz small shrimp
    • 2 green onion
    • Half package of soft tofu
    • 6 water chestnuts
    • 1 tsp cornstarch
    • 1 quarter tsp salt
    • 1 egg white

    For the soup sauce:


      1. Mix all the filling ingredients in a bowl.  Take the wonton wraps and fold the wontons in your favourite style (See the video).
      2. Mix all the soup sauce ingredients in a bowl.
      3. Bring half a medium pot of water to a boil.  Add the wontons to the boiling water and cook for about 4 -  5 minutes.  When the wontons are floating on top of the water they are ready.  Add 1 cup of cold water to cool down the wonton skins so they don't get soft.  Bring to a boil again, blanche spinach and transfer everything to the bowl where you have the soup sauce.  Add 1 cup of homemade soup to the bowl.  Garnish with chopped green onion.  Mix everything in the bowl evenly.  Now enjoy!

      Episode I

      Episode II

      This is the another version of wonton soup I made in Chinese Silk Squash soup.  It was so delicious!

      Thursday, April 7, 2011

      紅燒芋兒雞/Szechuan Braised Chicken and Small Taro

      I am a big fan of braised chicken especially when the chicken is braised with taro in a Szechuan style!  It is so delicious!  Just like my other dish - Curry Coconut Chicken, this dish also requires about an hour and half slow cooking.  The taros I cooked are small taros which you can buy at any Chinese supermarket or Chinatown.  That's why after simmering the taro tastes so soft, tender and juicy.  Since they are small they absorb all the delicious flavours from just one hour of slow cooking.  I only used 1 tbsp cooking oil and cooked the chicken with the skin on so it produces natural oil and doesn't taste very heavy.  I used just the chicken wings, however you can use any part of chicken to make this dish.

      This Szechuan Braised Chicken and Small Taro is a well known Szechuan cuisine dish in China.  This dish is especially popular in Chongqing - where I was born.  I remember there is an area called Nanshan in Chongqing where more than 30 restaurants serve this dish as their house special.

      (Makes 4+ servings)

      • 1 tbsp olive oil
      • 1 lb chicken wings
      • 1 lb small taro
      • 6 green onion
      • Half cup garlic
      • 2 tbsp sliced ginger
      • 1 oz fresh basil
      • 2 tbsp crystal sugar
      • A few cilantro
      • 4 cups of water

      Cooking sauce:

      • 5 pcs star anise
      • 1 tbsp dried cumin
      • 1 pc dried cinnamon
      • ½ tbsp dried clove
      • 2 dried bay leaves
      • ½ tbsp caraway seeds
      • 1½ tbsp chili broad bean sauce
      • 1 tbsp low-sodium soy sauce


      1. Peel and wash the small taro.  Cut the pieces that are bigger then the chicken wings into smaller cubes.  Chop the green onion.
      2. In a bowl, mix all the cooking sauce evenly.
      3. In a large non-stick saucepan, heat oil over medium heat.  Add green onion, garlic and ginger to cook.  After about 2 minutes, add chicken wings and cooking sauce.  Mix everything evenly and stir until the chicken is no longer pink.  Add water, basil and crystal sugar.  Cover, bring to a boil.  Add all the taro.  Stir everything evenly and make sure the chicken or taro are not sticking to the bottom.  Cover and let it simmer for one hour, then transfer to a serving plate.  Garnish with cilantro, now enjoy!