Fruit and Yoghurt Parfait

Monday, November 30, 2009

Fruit and Yoghurt Parfait Top View


Recently, my brother and sister-in-law have both gone healthy and all in their eating habits. An answered prayer of my mother’s I must say. So in honour of their renewed decision for healthy living, this concoction is dedicated to them.


Fruit and Yoghurt Parfait


I have used kiwis, strawberries and mangoes for their mutually contrasting colours but the choice of fruits is of naturally not limited to these. However, in order for the different fruits to stand out, select fruits of different contrasting colours. The portions below are sufficient for 8 huge servings so do make adjustments as necessary.



Fruit and Yoghurt Parfait


Ingredients

4 green kiwis
12 red strawberries
2 ripe mangoes
1 huge tub plain yoghurt


Method

1) Wash and dice all fruits into cubes. Set aside.

2) Form a bottom layer with strawberries, put 3 tablespoons of yoghurt over them. Form the middle layer of kiwis followed with 3 tablespoons of yoghurt. Repeat for the top layer of mangoes.

3) Leave in refrigerator to chill before serving.

Sweet and Sour Pork

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Sweet and Sour Pork


The past few weeks have been spent busy perfecting some Christmas recipes for cakes and cookies and other preparations for our Christmas parties. I had hardly any time left to spend experimenting new dishes for dinner.

My father loves sweet and sour pork and sometime ago, I had promised to cook that for him. So I guess, this long weekend was as good a time as any to make good on that promise.

I had noticed that NTUC Fairprice sells cubed pork sold in trays and neatly labeled as sweet and sour pork. And so for convenience, I decided to get this and since it was already all cut to size, I only had to trim off some fatty bits. (NTUC Fairprice has, in recent years, proven themselves to be widely-stocked with a wide-range of fresh produce. With a large branch located nearby, it has been a pretty useful place to run to for any item left out from the family’s weekly market trip.)

The pork cubes were prepared and left to marinate for 5 hours. Each bite yielded tender meat and most importantly, no ‘porky’ smell. We found the dish a little too sweet for our liking and so I have reflected a reduced amount of sugar in the reproduced recipe below. Other than that, the family gave it a thumbs up and every single morsel was polished off.

This recipe is a keeper!



Sweet and Sour Pork


Ingredients

500 gm lean pork (shoulder part), cut into cube-sized
1 green bell pepper, cut into small pieces
1 red bell pepper, cut into small pieces
3 wedges of honey pineapple, cut into small pieces
1 medium onion, cut into small pieces
2 cloves of garlic, chopped
Some cornflour

Marinate:
3 tbsp light soy sauce
1½ tsp of Hua Diao Jiu (花雕酒)
1 large egg

Sauce:
12 tbsp of tomato sauce
3 tbsp of sugar (reduced amount)
8 tbsp water
2 tsp of white vinegar
Pinch of salt


Method

1. Season pork cubes with light soy sauce and Hua Diao Jiu. Add in egg and combine well. Keep in the refrigerator and leave to marinate for at least 1 hour.

2. Add all sauce ingredients in a separate bowl. Stir to mix well and set aside.

3. When ready to cook, coat marinated pork cubes with cornflour. Make sure all sides of pork cubes are well covered with thick flour.

4. Heat wok with oil over high heat or use deep-fryer. Deep-fry pork for 5 min, or until crisp and golden brown. Remove from wok and drain on kitchen towel.

5. Clean wok. Heat wok with 1 teaspoon of oil, stir-fry chopped garlic till fragrant. Add bell peppers and pineapples, stir-fry for 3 min.

6. Return fried pork cubes to the wok and pour in sauce mixture. Stir-fry to combine well. Fry all ingredients briefly over high heat for 1 min and dish onto serving plate.



Reference : My Wok Life

Book Review : Fame

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Fame



Most people tend to view Christian literature as well…boring, dry and functions best as a sleep-inducing tool. Reading has always a favourite hobby of mine, as far back as I can remember, and I enjoy books of various genres. The one thing that I had always wondered is why there is an absence of books written for a widely secular audience but yet loaded with Christian values and presented in a manner that paints Christianity in a positive and appealing light. It would be a perfect way of sharing Christ and His values in a most non-threatening manner.

Over the years, I had concluded that it is probably a case of sensibility – dollars and cents just do not marry seemingly lofty heavenly morals. It would be hard to create a riveting storyline with God lurking between the lines, most people would have turned away. Thus, most Christian authors of secular fiction books will just mention God in their foreword or acknowledgment page.

Imagine my delight when I found Karen Kingsbury’s series of books. If you have not read any of her books, you would have missed out on powerful stories beautifully crafted to illustrate God’s blessings and ways in the lives of ordinary families and people. It is totally refreshing to see how ordinary people struggle with and live out kingdom values. Her stories touch on themes of love, loss, death, forgiveness, fame, acceptance, loyalty, trust, etc. Kingsbury effectively portrays Christianity not as a religion but for what it is – real relationship with God.

God comes through so strongly through her books that as I followed the story, I found myself tearing at times and stopping now and then to pray for myself or my family. You know it is a good Christian book when you feel motivated to do something for God. But you know it is a fantastic Christian book when you are compelled to immediately stop reading to respond to the message God is bringing you through the book. And only after you have responded then you are able to pick the book up to continue reading.

God bless Kingsbury for being a literary agent of God’s message to the world. She is also involved in various ministries ministering to different groups!

Verdict : 10/10. I love all her books!