Long weekend food
All I wanted was to have my say, and I’ve done that. So let’s move on to nicer things, shall we? :)
Here are some of the meals I ate recently, on the long weekend. By coincidence, guess what food item is featured?
You guessed it! SPAM!
But I’ll start with something a little more wholesome. Stir-fried pak choy with mushrooms, onion and garlic in oyster sauce. I fried the onions and garlic first, then added the mushrooms. I only added the pak choy at the end when the mushrooms were pretty much done – to make sure I didn’t overcook the pak choy stems, which I wanted nice and crunchy.
I ate the vegetables with freshly cooked rice and my “chicken dish with no name”. It’s become somewhat of a tradition for me to cook this dish whenever I find myself home alone for a weekend or longer. It’s very simple: I marinate boneless skinless chicken thigh pieces in a mixture of dark soy sauce, white pepper, a teaspoon or so of raw sugar, a drizzle of sesame oil and a little cornstarch. Usually I use my hands and rub the flavours into the chicken, then leave it to soak in overnight, or at least for a few hours, so the chicken’s nice and brown when I’m ready to cook it. I fry up some onion, garlic and sliced green beans in the wok, then add the chicken and whatever is left of the marinade. When the chicken’s about half-cooked, I add tomatoes that I’ve sliced roughly into wedges. I add a little more dark soy and a little water and let it all simmer for a little while so the chicken is fully cooked and the tomatoes soften and start falling apart. I love this combination of flavours – the salty soy sauce, the fragrant sesame oil and the sweetness from the tomatoes, and of course the tender chicken pieces. It is so tasty eating the rice soaked with the dark gravy.
On the weekend I went to the shops briefly and stopped for a quick lunch at Hungry Jack’s – a Whopper meal with fries. I don’t normally pay much attention to the raw onion in the burger, but for some reason this time it tasted absolutely amazing. I enjoyed every single bite, really tasting and relishing the onion, and I just couldn’t seem to get enough. I’m still wondering why I had this Amazing Onion Moment – was it me, or has HJ’s done something (for the better) to the onion they put in their Whoppers? I must have another Whopper soon and see if I have the same experience. :) And no, while it may sound like I had some trippy moment there, I assure you, I wasn’t on any mood-altering substances. Well, apart from that amazing onion, that is! Heheheheh.
On the Monday public holiday, I made myself a quick breakfast of fried SPAM cubes, cherry tomatoes, beans, mushrooms and corn kernels on rice. I made sure the SPAM cubes were nicely browned – with slightly crisp edges, yet still bouncy to the bite. It was a great way to start the day… before I launched into a quick tidy-up so the house would look immaculate when Jac returned.
Jac got home on Monday arvo. As dinner time drew closer, neither of us felt like cooking (she was tired from her trip, I was in pain from my first couple of sessions on the Wii :)). It seemed an ideal time to order some Chinese home delivery. Our usual place was closed, so we ordered from a different place. This was the deep-fried hors d’oeuvres selection, called Four Seasons, because you get four kinds of deep-fried goodies – mini spring rolls, wantan, fried dim sum and prawn toast. All terribly bad and greasy of course, but so very delicious too. The wantan had barely any filling in them, but I still devoured the crispy deep-fried pastry. I liked the prawn toast best of all – the toast itself was a little overdone, but it was a real pleasure sinking my teeth into the chewy layer of prawn meat beneath the sesame seeds.
Here’s my plate. Starting from the prawns, moving clockwise: king prawn and broccoli, combination fried rice, salt and pepper pork ribs, vegetable chow mein and boneless duck in plum sauce. The prawns were bursty and garlicky and delicious. The salt and pepper pork ribs would’ve been delicious if there’d been more meat in that salt and pepper-laced batter. The vegetable chow mein was surprisingly good – it’s just stir-fried vegetables, but I was really in the mood for it. It was the first time we tried the boneless duck in plum sauce. I know this, because I’d have remembered to never order it again! It was terrible – although the plum sauce was nice, the boneless duck barely made an appearance. We’re talking bits of duck – not pieces – bits, like specks of duck! $13 or $14 for a box of deep-fried batter in plum sauce is not my idea of value! :) Thank goodness the fried rice was good. Good old fried rice!