Hi guys !
After months of disappearing and then re-appearing again, I can say, finally, definitively that I’m back and will be blogging more often.
This time, however, my blog and its content will be quite different. I think I’ve travelled quite enough for the past two years and it’s time (in more ways than one) for me to settle down – so the next six months will hardly see me going anywhere at all except shuffling between Singapore and HKG to spend time with my family.
I do have news! But I’m not ready to talk about it here, but I will when I can! The outcome of a huge, huge change I’ve made in my life is this – I now have time to focus 100 per cent on my health and on just being happy and doing the things I haven’t gotten to do in my past 3 years as part of the rat race.
Of course, I have deeply mixed feelings about this. But one thing I’ve started to do, is to eat well – and after toying around with takeaways (too much MSG, not enough veg, ending up spending too much on mediocre food), catered dinners (I won’t always be home to pick up the food and what if they serve stuff I don’t like), K and I have decided that the most economical, sensible, and healthy thing to do would be to simply try to cook more ourselves !
Today, we made our first “couple dinner” together in ages and it was good – and simple. Together in our tiny shoebox kitchen, me stirring a pan of seasoned beef, him gingerly mixing our pasta salad over the sink and then crowing in triumph when it turned out pretty yummy, and Benjy begging for scraps and winding his furry, narrow body around my legs – it was pretty close to perfect and I didn’t even have to go anywhere special to feel that way 🙂
Here’s our recipe for tonight’s dinner, and we’re going to be disciplined about putting up recipes and documenting our cooking journey together !
Beef Shepherd’s Pie (modified from my Mum’s recipe, which in turn is modified from a Violet Oon recipe)
Ingredients (serves two meals for 2 people or one meal for 3 hungry people)
Lean Beef Mince 300 gm
2 medium sized carrots, chopped fine
1 purple onion, diced or sliced fine
3 medium sized-to-large Russet Potatoes, washed
- Marinate lean beef mince with 2 tbsp Chinese wine, 1 tbsp Light Soy Sauce, 1 tbsp Worchestershire sauce, generous amount of black pepper, sprinkle of sea salt flakes for at least 15-20 minutes.
- Boil water with salt, add potatoes and cook for 30 minutes or until tender.
- Heat olive oil on medium heat in a saucepan, when hot, saute onions still limp and a little golden brown, then add chopped carrots.
- When carrots and onions start becoming fragrant, add 1 cup chicken stock (broth, or chicken granules mixed with water works)
- When carrots and onions have absorbed all the stock, add 1 tbsp Dark Soy Sauce and simmer.
- Add beef to carrots and onions, cook until mixture is fragrant – about 3 minutes on medium heat.
- When potatoes are boiled, remove skin and mash with butter, milk and salt until smooth (not chunky, and falls from spoon when upside down)
- Put a layer of beef about 2.5 inches high into the ramekins, and top with mash until full. Sprinkle with mozzarella cheese or any kind of tasty cheese.
- Bake ramekins in pre-heated oven at 180 degrees celsius for 15 minutes.
For veg we had my Korean pasta fruit salad, which is sweet, savoury and creamy in the best way. I first tried Korean pasta salad in Seoul about five years ago and consequently came up with my own version which has less mayonnaise and a lot more fruit (so I feel more virtuous too). K can eat buckets of this – and the great thing is, you can use almost any crunchy fruit you have on hand !
It’s healthy, delicious, addictive and just bursting with freshness. I can eat it at any time of the day !
Libby’s Korean Pasta Fruit Salad
1 cup boiled and cooled pasta (farfalle, macaroni, elbows, all small pasta are good for this!)
1 Korean Pear, sliced and chopped into 2 cm pieces
1 Fuji Apple, sliced and chopped into 2 cm pieces
5 large strawberries, washed, de-stemmed and sliced into 2 cm pieces
Handful of blueberries
Japanese Kyuuri cucumber, roughly peeled (keep some green bits on for color) and sliced fine
5 sticks of imitation crabmeat, chopped
2-3 tablespoons of Kewpie Mayo
- Combine all ingredients in a large mixing bowl, then top with Mayo
- Toss lightly and gently to avoid breaking fruit and coat evenly
- Grate fresh black pepper before serving.
Phewf just typing that all out felt like a lot of work ! Will be back soon with more 🙂 And if you girls need any help with the recipes or suggestions at all, just drop me a comment or ask.fm and I’ll be more than happy to help as I fumble through my own un-domestic goddesshood !
Libby (maybe Nigella soon sans the domestic abuse)