Hi guys, it has been forever since I last wrote a post in English, but now since I have slept for a bit and completely awake now, and to the fact that I suddenly have this dose of inspiration to write for Phoholic that I have been searching for few weeks. In total, I feel that this is a good time I started writing about reflection in foods this week. It may sound random since it is the first week I have done this, but I hope it might be more interesting and personal than restaurant review posts. 

SKILL OF THE WEEK: MAKING MATCHA LATTE

Sorry to all the matcha-addicts out there, I am not one of you. However, whenever I walk in Seoul Plaza (an Asian supermarket near my university), I always stop and pick the matcha powder can up. I am not so sure whether I should spend 9 pounds in a tiny can of matcha powder when I am not that religious about matcha. But guess what, I have finally bought it, tried to make matcha latte after browsing through a dozen recipes on Youtube. So here is my second attempt made with rice milk.

VEGETARIAN MEAL OF THE WEEK

Last week, my flatmates and I cooked dinners with all vegetarian foods. We all decided that we would do this every Thursday, except one flatmate who cannot give up his carnivore nature. It was not that difficult for me to not eat meat, because I love eating veggies, and it is great for me to learn new recipes from all my friends, as well as online. Also, the lovely bit of all of this is I feel that I can have a better digestion system, and not having to harm any animals. Last week, I cooked Pineapple fried rice with scorch rice (I fried a "fillet" of rice in a pan both sides for around 7 minutes until it was crispy on both sides) which I copied from a dish I ate in Ưu Đàm Chay Restaurant in Hanoi. Ingredients that I have used for this dish are rice, pineapple, carrot, courgette, shallot, green onion, soy sauce, turmeric powder (to make the rice yellow) and salt. While I can easily give up meat for a day, I feel cooking savory Asian dishes without using fish sauce is such a challenge, because I have to use so much soy sauce to bring out the flavor.

I also can't help eating so much of my friends' dishes which are Stir-fried Aubergine (lovely flavor), Braised Tofu with Mushroom and Korean potato salad (with cucumber, boiled egg and mayonnaise). All sound so exciting and meat-free. I am thinking of making Vegetarian Spring roll this week, but let's see how my friends surprise me with their own creations?

So this week, I actually made Vegetarian spring roll this week with my flatmates, with fillings including green beans, carrot, cabbage, pho (because I ran out of glass noodles and the Asian shop was closed), egg, mushroom, green onion, coriander, soy sauce, salt, and vegetable seasonings. Of course it was not as good as the meaty one but I think it was pretty good for the first time making. 

Oh one thing I find quite interesting is that in many Asian countries, people normally order few dishes and share them, while in the West, people usually order their own dish and just eat it. Is it because of the culture of individualism versus collectivism of Confucian? Any ideas?

"WHAT I MISS" OF THE WEEK

Since I can cook most of the Vietnamese dishes I crave at my current home, I find myself silently craving for Pizza 4Ps's pizza with that thin crust, the creamy cheese and fresh ingredients on top, and that Crab spaghetti. I can now here my belly protesting now. And I miss Julie Nguyen's cheese tart, actually I just made it myself last week which was pretty good, but now I just want somebody to do it for me. 

"WHAT I WANT TO TRY" OF THE WEEK

Do you know that Dominique Ansel Bakery has just been opened in London? I can't wait to try their Cronut (it is a marriage of croissant and donut, so it is like a donut with a lot of thin pastry layers), cookie shot (a chocolate cookie cup filled with vanilla milk), and of course frozen s'more. One of my foodie friend just went to this bakery (I think she came in the afternoon to avoid queueing) and had a lot of positive comments for this bakery. I will write more about this when I finally have the chance to eat it. 

"NEW FOODS I AM INTRODUCED" OF THE WEEK

I just had a coffee date with a Korean friend of mine, and I asked her what Koreans normally eat when they go out, and she introduced me to her favorite dish: Raw crab in soy sauce (Ganjang-gejang). It is that the raw crab is marinated in soy sauce for three weeks. I read on Maangchi about how to do it but it looks quite complicated and it does not take as long as three weeks to be edible, so I may need to research more about this. Also, I found out that in every Korean household, they have a fridge for just storing kimchi, because they need to store an enormous amount of kimchi for their winter. How cute it is right?

Admittedly, I just made a big jar of napa cabbage kimchi, and I cannot wait to make soup with it after a few days of fermentation. I also just tried to make Salted egg one hour ago, so I guess I can make "bông lan trứng muối" (salted egg yolk cup cake) in 3 week time. So many goods things to be excited at. 

Also, my flatmate just made us Cao lầu (a Hoian specialty noodle, eaten with charsiew pork), and here is the photo. (Disclaimer: I wrote this post for a few days, so the timing looks a bit out of order)

 

"RECIPE I WANT TO TRY" OF THE WEEK

I am addicted to cheese naan in Dishoom in London, I cannot count how many naan I eat when I come there. I just found a recipe for their Garlic Naan, maybe I will try it this week but will try my best to somehow incorporate cheese in it. So here is the recipe for anyone who want to try. This is also a super duper lovely website for recipes, please check it out, you'll surely be amazed. Or maybe I will try this recipe, because the video looks so attractive, and it is CHEESE NAAN.

 

Thank you for spending so much time reading about my week, and I hope that you had an amazing week with wise things realized and good foods enjoyed. See you next week with more stories told. And I would love to hear about your week too, so please share your thoughts with me. 

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